Tuesday, February 12, 2008

A Tale of two Americas

John Edwards used to rail at the "Two Americas." Right, one where people have a house with more square footage than my block. And one where he would put on his pedestrian Levi shirt and his plain front Dockers and would walk around nodding his head knowingly, while listening to all of the woes and laments of being victims of hedge funds.
But I am beginning to think that there may be Two Americas, just not the ones that Edwards envisioned.
In one America, I see a people who are optimistic, hopeful and happy.
In the other, I see a people who are pessimistic, dour and angry.
In one America, I see people who value achievement and accomplishment.
In the other, I see people who rage in jealousy at the fact that they have not achieved or accomplished anything, and want the other group to pay for their failures.
One group that thinks that all people are intelligent individuals who can exercise smart choices.
Another who think that we can't be trusted to make choices for our own benefit, and that those choices should be transferred to some higher power of their choosing.
One America that sees 9-11 as part of a continuum of attacks by Islamic terrorists.
The other that sees 9-11 as either a criminal conspiracy by the Bush administration, or a minor blip that needs to be disregarded at the earliest opportunity.
One that sees Iraq as in the process of transformation, and hopefully the model for the future of a dysfunctional Middle East.
The other that sees Iraq as impossible to change, and that sees the Iraq war as a political tool with which to seize power.

My fear is that the second America will be in the ascendancy. The one hope that I have is that the Republic has been through tough times before and emerged stronger than those who would have pulled it down. Unfortunately, a smart man I know added the comment after the above: "I am sure that is what the Romans thought too."


Anonymous said...

I wish you had given some names to your two Americas. My brother Wulfgar wants to buy a ticket to the first America, but he doesn’t know what to type in at Travelocity.

Anonymous said...

I think yer deluded. That little essay is about as far from reality as anything I have ever seen, anywhere. And I do think I've seen things like it elsewhere.

Anonymous said...

"That little essay is about as far from reality as anything I have ever seen..."

And Mark has gone far. Lord knows, Mark has gone VERY far.