Rick Moran writes in Pajamas Media, The Death of Pragmatism, 1/27/12
In his article about the evisceration of centrism he quotes from the movie, The American President:
We have serious problems to solve, and we need serious people to solve them. And whatever your particular problem is, I promise you, Bob Rumson is not the least bit interested in solving it. He is interested in two things and two things only: making you afraid of it and telling you who’s to blame for it. That, ladies and gentlemen, is how you win elections. You gather a group of middle-aged, middle-class, middle-income voters who remember with longing an easier time, and you talk to them about family and American values and character.
For a large number of conservatives and many liberals who are being taunted with the epithet “RINO” or “DINO,” the fact remains that they have not left their party. Their party has left them. Those who can’t stomach the extremism, the obstructionism, the radicalism of the neo-liberals and Tea Party conservatives who both seek to hammer each other into the ground on a daily basis are largely left on the outside, viewing the slow-motion train wreck that politics has become with a feeling of abject helplessness.
It’s not a question of “moderates” not holding power. One can be liberal or conservative and be pragmatic enough to work with the other side on the big issues of the day. The problem is, pragmatism is dead — killed by the excessively ideological base of both parties who view compromise as treason, and comity as cowardice. Both sides are so besotted with a warped and tangled view of each other that they occasionally — unintentionally — provide comic relief for our political culture.
I confess that the primary has left me feeling a need for political detox. The debate seems to shift from the wildly theoretical to the totally irrelevant. We must eventually select the best of less than perfect choices. But we still have a choice.