Thursday, January 10, 2008

A Positive Reading of American History

From an Economist review of Morton Keller's new book on American history, an encouraging conclusion for a populace suffering from a Presidential campaign that has gone on too long and with too little civility...

His conclusion is that: “This is still a Republic worth keeping, with a polity capable of doing the job.” Despite the waste and folly of its bureaucracy, despite the slander and polarisation of its election campaigns, America's system of government is extraordinarily robust and flexible. Though everyone grumbles that politicians are out of touch, both Republicans and Democrats in fact respond swiftly to shifts in the national mood. Mr Keller reckons that the biggest challenge facing the two parties is that young voters no longer inherit their parents' political loyalties. In 1984 voters under 30 were the most Republican age group; in 2004 they were the most Democratic. This is surely good: each generation should decide for itself.

No comments: