Wednesday, December 15, 2010

You Labeled Me

David Harsanyi says "Feel free to label me":

So unless human nature drastically changes, No Labels is unneeded and inconsequential. Yet, it's doing no one any favors by feeding the myth that we're a country teetering on the edge of catastrophe.

Haven't we been saddled with politics ever since Cain filibustered Abel? Pharisees and Sadducees? Patriots and Tories? Bolsheviks and the dead? In a historical context, aren't these mildly contentious, non-violent debates we're having about as stable as politics can get in a democracy? We've had two landslides, for two sides, in two cycles, lest anyone believe Americans are ideologically rigid.

Do we not already have a significantly moderated political system? Two parties representing a general left/right divide? If one party isn't restrained from within, typically the other party will create balance by taking power. What sort of political system would we have if the out-of-touch insiders of No Labels persuaded us to cede debate without making our ideological case? Is "moving forward" for the sake of moving forward a virtue?

Finally, No Labels also claims that, "The consequences of inaction have never been greater, because the issues we face have never been more serious, more complicated, or more dangerous."

Really. Never?

Admittedly, I'm no Will Durant, but I find dust bowls or tens of thousands of corpses on the beaches of Europe to be as complex and dangerous as controlling debt. Actually, a lot more complex.

Not to mention, most of that debt was the result of the wonders of bipartisanship.

When has bipartisanship or "coming together to get thing done" or "moving forward" ever resulted in less government and more individual liberty? The alleged "consensus" and moderation that groups like No Labels purports to seek always seems to come down on the same side of the philosophical divide over the proper role of government in our lives. No one needs a label to recognize that.