The debate is between those who think the job of the government is to make the already rich and powerful more rich and powerful, the Republicans, and those who think the job of the government is to make more of us rich and powerful. It's between those who think the job of government is to serve the interests and protect the money of rich businessmen and those who think it is the job of government to increase the odds of more of us who want to wheel and deal, buy and sell, becoming rich businesspersons. It's between those who think that the government shouldn't get involved with the business of buying and selling except in the cases when it's to save the money and privileges of those who've already made their wads from buying and selling and those who think that the government should always be working to increase the buying and selling of everything and anything because that's the way to spread the money around.
Read, as they say, the Whole Thing.
It's beyond my poor power to add anything, but, then, that's never stopped me before. Reagan won by hanging around long enough that his natural entourage of True Believers, snake-oil manufacturers, bloodthirsty draft dodgers, and business executives (that is, various combinations of the first three) were joined by sufficient numbers of Americans fed up that it was no longer 1951. And he succeeded, or "succeeded", as is absolutely clear in retrospect, by convincing large numbers of voters that sugar-coated dog turds were in fact the delicious Tootsie Rolls of their youth.
And he could not have succeeded if the opposition party pushed back.
I'm not saying that Mammon Rapine Quisling Bigot and Cheney, LLC, wouldn't have won out in the end, anyway. Or that it hadn't actually won the war during the Truman administration. I'm saying that perhaps, today, 1 in 3 or 1 in 5 Teabaggers might be more concerned about their health, and their futures, and their children's health and futures, being stolen by Wall Street sharpers than they are about the President's birth certificate. Democrats didn't simply avoid making forceful arguments to counter Reaganism. They adjured. They ran screaming from the potential loss of campaign contributions and sinecured seats, and cosy franking and banking privileges, and they lost them anyway. For twenty-five years. And at the same time they lost the ability to make an argument and have a wide swatch of what came to be known as Red State America take it seriously.
Y'know, a handful of international traders nearly (or maybe not nearly) wrecked the global economy, in large measure because we took our hands off the wheel, and because we considered enforcing what was left of our sensible, hard-earned regulation of such shenanigans little more than a leg-pull (and because of forward-thinking, eh, Governor?). And we promptly bailed them out under threat of exponential disaster. If this is not being gobsmacked, what is? Democrats should have established a fifty-year reign atop it, or at least until a future generation willfully blinded itself to the reality. Instead they run in terror of being called Socialists--or they conveniently go through the motions. Tough guys. Like Rahm Emanuel.
You're in politics. How'd you get bamboozled by a faux-genial GE spokesmodel like The Gipper unless you agreed to? How do you get shouted down today by a "minority" party? I'll grant you that the Republican trick of getting absolute adherence from the very people whose gold teeth it was swiping is less likely with Democrats. But it's Scissors, Rock, and Paper. If True Belief took every pot we'd all be facing Mecca five times a day.
This may, by the way, explain my obsession with local news, assuming "obsession" and "American age-group record for indolence" go together. It's like tuning in a gaggle of Reagans every night, cheerleaders for a vast system of mutual swindling based on no one mentioning the Grift. There are still three or four holdovers from the Seventies around, people I personally remember as having come on in their youth like little Woodsteins (or Jeff Greenfields), friends of the Little Guy, speaking the Truth to You Know Who, who are now contented aluminum siding pitchmen. Today two African-American women occupy 25% of the main anchor slots on Indianapolis' two top channels; an African-American male is half the team at the also-ran. It's a city which is 25% African-American only because it annexed the white suburbs to the county line in 1969 in order to dilute the voting bloc. It's a city that was once run by the Klan. And listening to the publicly-licensed users of the public airwaves you're about as likely to hear anything approaching a minority take on the "news" as you are to hear any of 'em slagging their network's prime-time lineup. It's as though the whole point of diversity is increasing visual interest. Not to mention that the Pom-Pom routine is now marrow deep; having spent the gubernatorial election year praising Indiana's relative (and fabulous) economic miracle they've been mostly at a loss on how to cover its skyrocketing unemployment (and how to sham empathy), and have settled on just assuming everyone knows so they can get to the Economic Bright Spot corner (really; 8 has a graphic), where they tout a potential forty new jobs in Muncie, with a long-term prospect of forty more.
You'd worry about the hidden costs to everyone's colon health, except that 8 has a nice series of promos about their new iPhone ap. Another reason to treat yourself once you land that telemarking job in Terre Haute.