MONDAY, JULY 25, 2022
Our own possible plans: We're inclined to agree with the sentiments expressed in Max Boot's latest column.
We've been expressing such sentiments for a long time. We're tired of hearing ourselves do it.
Boot is offering gloomy thoughts about this nation's future. "I used to be an optimist," he says. But, he says, "Not anymore."
BOOT (7/25/22): I used to be an optimist about America’s future. Not anymore. There’s a good reason that so many people I know are acquiring foreign passports and talking about moving somewhere else: The prognosis is grim.
As political scientist Brian Klaas just wrote in the Atlantic, given that the GOP has become “authoritarian to its core,” there are two main ways to save America: Either reform the Republican Party or ensure that it never wields power again. But a MAGA-fied GOP is likely to gain control of at least one chamber of Congress in the fall and could win complete power in 2024.
We seem to be sleepwalking to disaster. If we don’t wake up in time, we could lose our democracy. Just because we’ve avoided a breakdown in the past doesn’t mean we will stave it off in the future.
"We seem to be sleepwalking to disaster," Boot gloomily says. We've been expressing that view for quite some time. Here's one major difference:
Quite correctly, Boot notes the gruesome state of the red tribe's party. He's quite correct about that—or at least, he's quite correct about that party's officials.
We'd always draw a sharp distinction between that party's officials and its rank and file. You can't walk away from your fellow citizens.
Quite plainly, they aren't as brilliant or as perfect as we are. But they're still right here, in our cities and towns, and yes, they do belong.
Boot is appalled by the GOP's officials; we might almost agree with him there. Beyond that, we've been concerned, for at least thirty years, about the way our own blue tribe—including the bulk of the upper-end press—has persistently chosen to perform.
That said, we're tired of hearing ourselves say it—and plainly, it's pointless to do so.
We'll continue to say it this week. Plainly, though, it does no good, and it may be time, in some way, for us to trundle along.
We want to discuss The Liar's Paradox, which is (absurdly) said to make the minds of academics crash. We want to discuss the way Bertrand Russell devoted those 700 pages to the task of proving that 1 + 1 = 2, in the book which was so huge he had to truck it around in a wheelbarrow.
We regard it as a beautiful, wonderfully comical story. We want to scale the slopes of Olympus and laugh right along with the gods.
We want to share that laughter with you. In our view, it's a big, good-hearted tale! People in red states could laugh at this tale, along with the people in blue.
A minor quibble RE Boot: "If we don’t wake up in time, we could lose our democracy?"
"We could lose our democracy." That's the semantic framework our tribe has chosen to employ in the current non-discussion discussion. To our ear, it doesn't sound like the way we the American people have traditionally talked.
Is that the language with which us the bulk of the regular people actually speak and think? In our view, you have to know how to talk pork to the people or the people will mosey along.
Our tribe is disinclined to care about that. In truth, we don't seem to like large swaths of the regular people. We've been signaling that fact in various ways for well over fifty years, dating back to the street-fighting 1960s.
That doesn't mean that we're bad people. It could mean that we're not perfectly super-sharp—and given the way the modern world works, we have little room for arrogance, ego or error.
Good people live in our red and blue states. Barack Obama first said that! It's a good point to keep in mind.