Monday, February 12, 2007

Can you reason your way out of partisan gridlock?

Is There Power in a Unity 08? Send in the centrists? Don't bother, they're here. Brian Doherty (reason magazine) --Even if we could assume that the overall result of 2006’s election was an accurate reflection of most voters' overall wishes rather than an emergent pattern above and beyond their control, that result—GOP executive, Democratic congress—is the best guarantee we could have of “partisan gridlock.” And those, such as Unity 08, who link big money corruption with partisanship should note that it was only partisanship—a Democratic desire to differentiate themselves from their sleazy colleagues across the aisle—that led to the recent anti-lobbyist action we’ve seen. Partisanship is the one thing that makes the bastards go against their larger interests as politicians....

I'm not a fan of Reason magazine, although I have some good libertarian friends who tend more in the grassroots tradition. I dont see any reason to posit a centrist politic in favor of issue-oriented appeals, or vice versa. The issue for independents is that partisan gridlock won't be broken except by a concerted effort on the ground by independent thinkers. We won't think our way out of this. That's the worst kind of conscienceness-raising.

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