Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Orson Scott Card

Would the Last Honest Reporter Please Turn On the Lights?

3 comments:

dcat said...

The facts are that the loan crisis was the result of bad decisions by avaricious private lenders. Fannie/Freddie deserve their blame, but only after we recognize the actual chronology of events in which fannie/freddie followed and did not lead. Let's not construct a false narrative. Unless, of course, creating a false narrative is our goal.

dcat

Stephen said...

Certainly he is correct about how this story would be spun if it had been Republicans instead of Democrats defending fannie/freddie.

liberal said...

As someone who studies the "wilderness years" of the Democratic Party and liberalism, most of what I read today from Republicans leaves me with a feeling of deja vu.

Steve, with all due respect, the point isn't whether the GOP is getting treated differently than the Dems would regarding Fannie Mae. Conservatives have been in power and controlled all branches of government for 6 years--and have generally set the political agenda for a generation. Like it or not, the GOP is responsible for the financial crisis. Did they have help? Yes. But so what? Governing is about accepting responsibility for results, whether you control what happens or not.

I don't expect talking heads to accept blame but I would sure hope that conservative intellectuals would be honest enough with themselves (see Alan Greenspan on this count) to admit that their ideology is not foolproof.

I have no idea if Obama will be an effective president or if he will govern from the center (as I hope and suspect he will). But I sure can tell that conservativism would benefit from some time in the political wilderness. By just about every metric that matters the Bush administration has performed poorly. If Bush were a Democrat, I sure hope that I would be secretly hoping to lose so we could figure out just who and what we were.

The first thing that conservatives have to do--before they can come back--is accept responsibility for that. The country is in terrible shape (is this all Bush's fault? no. but you guys have been in charge).

Dems learned this lesson the very very hard way over the last 40 years. Just as New Deal liberalism ran its course by the mid 1960s, so has Goldwater conservativism. It no longer responds to the big issues of the day, as it once did. Rather than pointing fingers at the media it is time retool. Does all of this mean that Obama will lead a liberal resurgence? No. But just like the 1970s the country is up for grabs, realignment is afoot, and which party/ideology that offers a coherent set of ideas that respond to the issues of the day will assume power for the upcoming political age.

For whatever it is worth, my advice to you and other conservatives is to admit your shortcomings and failures and then get to work on developing new ideas for this novel era. If the past is prologue, however, I suspect many of you guys will behave like liberals of yesteryear and remain in the wilderness for some time to come.