The pundits are saying this week that progressives are experiencing “Perry Panic”.
I say bring it on.
Bring on this culture war to end all culture wars. We need a real clear decision. Do we (all the people, not some of the people) want to move towards Rick Perry’s vision on the future or Barack Obama’s vision of the future. Down Perry’s road lies a world where gays stay in the closet, women are submissive, where Social Security is abandoned to the care of Wall Street (for a big fee), and where we keep trying to play the role of policeman of the world.
Pretty much the opposite would be what Obama believes. So let’s choose as a country
As Dana Milbank has pointed out, in another time, Rick Perry would be thought of as a nut case.
But we are not in a normal time, we are in an interregnum, “where the old is dying and the new cannot yet be born”. The only way to get out of the political quicksand we find ourselves in as a country is to have a knock down drag out election about the direction of America. It’s not like this hasn’t happened before. In 1800 with Jefferson’s Democratic victory over the Federalists, the lines for the American story were set, as the great historian Joseph Ellis noted.
“The main story line of American History, cast Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton in the lead roles of a dramatic contest between the forces of Democracy and the forces of Aristocracy.”
For most of our country’s history the Hamilton forces have won; money = power. But in the elections of 1828, 1860, 1896, 1932, 1960 the country underwent a complete political realignment with the forces of democracy breaking through and Capital losing control.
So I’m looking forward to the first Obama-Perry Debate because it will distill the choice for America. Do you want to go back to Rick Perry’s imaginary 1950’s world or do you want to take a chance on real future where American entrepreneurs can win around the world because we have our priorities straight.
We educate our citizens to world class standards, we create world class intellectual property, we support freedom movements in various ways in various regions, but we don’t consider ourselves the unpaid cop of the world.
I think Obama can deliver on those priorities and the mix of these three elements can create an innovation movement of extraordinary power. I understand there is a lot of cynicism around in the liberal community, but I have thought since I started this blog in December of 2007, that Obama was an extraordinary politician. Go with me here. Case in point.
Today Obama announces he wants to do a speech before Congress at the exact time of the Republican debate on MSNBC. He accomplishes two wonderful objectives in the same move.
- He brings attention to a Republican Debate that no independent was planning to watch. Now they may observe at first hand the Chamber of Horrors that is the Republican Field, all battling to get to the right of eachother. But Good Ole Rick is gonna win that battle because he’s put 234 people to death by injection since he has been governor.
- If the Republican’s Chicken out, (NBC is willing to move the Debate back an hour) then they will look like they don’t want a direct comparison with Obama’s speech to Congress. And if Obama accedes he looks like a reasonable man.
This is gonna be a fun election. For those of us who enjoyed 2008, 2012 is gonna be a blast.