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The Problem with American Politics, in Two Parts

You can't be post-partisan without the other side's cooperation. (White House photo)

Part One:

The body of Mr. Obama’s writing and experiences before he became a presidential candidate would suggest that he is instinctively pragmatic, typical of an emerging generation that sees all political dogma — be it ’60s liberalism or ’80s conservatism — as anachronistic. Privately, Mr. Obama has described himself, at times, as essentially a Blue Dog Democrat, referring to the shrinking caucus of fiscally conservative members of the party.

Part Two:

In past nominating contests, electability was a chief argument on the part of establishment candidates like Romney. In the current tea-party-influenced GOP, electability means different things to different voters. “People are enthusiastic about saying, ‘Let’s nominate the person who’s closest to our values,'” Reed said, “‘because we’re no longer buying into the argument that a centrist-moderate candidate is,ipso facto, more viable.'”

So to summarize, the current leader of the “left” is a Blue Dog who thinks partisan politics are a quaint relic of a bygone era, while the entire right has been brewing up a noxious new 130-proof conservatism, and is about to nominate the wingnuttiest presidential candidate, ever.

Meanwhile, the legacy media continue to cast the Blue Dog Obama as the “liberal” and these Teabirchers as “conservative” — and lament the fact that “extremists on both sides” are making it impossible for the parties to find a way to “compromise.”

Is it any wonder we are where we are?

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