Friday, November 9, 2012

The Habits of the American Heart

What happened on Tuesday?

I sincerely doubt a more reasonable, unloaded explanation than this one by the National Review's Jonah Goldberg is possible.  He contrasts our Founders' vision for the country with that of the Progressives.  On Tuesday, the Progressives won.

Please read it...and weep.

I'm only half joking.

Along with frustration and anger, another very important part of what we conservatives are experiencing in the wake of the election results is sadness.  Leave aside for a moment any debate about which vision is superior, at a much more basic level we fear we are witnessing the passing of an older understanding, the end of an old and trusted way, the death of an exceptional friend.  Our hearts are broken.


  1. Don't despair just yet. I, along with you, felt the disappointment of Tuesday night on a level I thought I had never felt before. In fact a good friend sent me a text right after the race was called to tell me that he was "sick to his stomach" and that he guessed that the takers now outnumbered the givers. I quickly identified with that feeling and it reminded me of a time in my youth, when someone we both knew very well and whom I considered to be apolitical made a comment that made me feel the same way. It was during the Watergate hearings. We were walking through the woods and he said to his brother, “I’m not sure the country can survive this”. I was shocked. This man’s view of politics was that it was all “bigger than him”. He seldom spoke of it, at least not with me and here he was expressing a genuine fear for the future. Being young enough to be unnerved by the comment but old enough to realize the significance of it I indeed felt, “sick to my stomach” and bordered on despair. Over the next five years the country suffered thought the impeachment of Mr. Nixon, an impotent Ford Administration and the colossal failure of the Carter Administration. And then, when I was finally of age to vote I cast a vote for President Reagan. (My kids will tell you that I often tell them my first vote was my best and it’s been down hill ever since, except for my second vote for the same man that is.) Even at eighteen what most drew me to President Reagan was his unwavering optimism. In spite of everything that happened he believed, genuinely believed, that America’s best years lay ahead. He was criticized for it, even ridiculed but he never quit believing. While there are many reasons I admired Reagan, it was his optimism that caused me to love that man. While many would say that it was his policies that changed America, I would argue that his policies separated from his optimism would not have been successful. We must take heart, all is not lost, we may be outnumbered, even though deep in my heart I doubt it, I am still convinced that our best days are ahead and we must not, we cannot, give up. After all, our children are depending on it.

  2. Thanks M...and Amen! You're right, it ain't over 'til it's over and it ain't over yet.