Tuesday, September 04, 2012

Anti-Political Politics

TAC Rod Dreher - Anti-Political Politics
On the one hand, it’s hard to imagine a moment in our nation’s history where the two parties were worse. We’ve had lots of ugly moments in our nation’s political history, but even at our low points you could pick out reasons for hope, reasons to think that the status quo would change. I don’t see any reason for hope in the mainstream of either party right now. Both sides do have dissident voices that independents can rally to, but there’s little reason to think that non-statist communitarians will gain any traction with the Democrats or that the localist/traditionalist faction will gain much ground in the GOP. But the second layer to this is that there isn’t a way to live apolitically. What’s needed, then, is a new way of approaching politics. And that way won’t preclude supporting one of the two main parties when those parties deserve to be supported, but neither will it be defined by a default posture of acceptance and sympathy to one party or the other.
The difficulty here is that we struggle to imagine non-partisan forms of community involvement. I’ve quoted it before, but Barney Frank’s quotation cited in a Ross Douthat column earlier this year should give you a migraine: “Government is simply the name we give to the things we’ve chosen to do together.” You won’t find a more devastating indictment of our nation’s lack of communal imagination than that...
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