David Brooks, who sometimes writes columns as if he were employed by the Onion and not the New York Times, whines:
I’ll be writing a lot about the presidential election over the next 16 months, but at the outset I would just like to remark that I’m opining on this whole campaign under protest. I’m registering a protest because for someone of my Hamiltonian/National Greatness perspective, the two parties contesting this election are unusually pathetic. Their programs are unusually unimaginative. Their policies are unusually incommensurate to the problem at hand.
Really, all these pols are slumming it while Brooks and others who inhabit elite digs are the ones who really care about the fate of the country and are sophisticated enough to know the pols deserve our contempt. (And, by the way, doesn’t he have enough clout to write on topics that interest him?)
Covering this upcoming election is like covering a competition between two Soviet refrigerator companies, cold-war relics offering products that never change.
What is worthy of a great country? Why, a party that has a platform completely in sync with David Brooks! He explains the Brooks Party:
If there were a Hamiltonian Party, it would be offering a multifaceted reinvigoration agenda. It would grab growth ideas from all spots on the political spectrum and blend them together. Its program would be based on the essential political logic: If you want to get anything passed, you have to offer an intertwined package that smashes the Big Government vs. Small Government orthodoxies and gives everybody something they want.
If that sounds like mush, self-contradictory and lacking in appeal to both liberals and conservatives, you’ve figured out why there is no Brooks, er, Hamiltonian Party. In politics, the market (of ideas) actually does work. So far there’s no demand for a program that oddly lacks any mention of the debt or even awareness of the debt.
It’s really not a good idea to frequent those who don’t want to do their jobs. Do you go to a doctor who thinks medicine is mere quackery? Do you visit a restaurant whose owner finds the public insufferable? Maybe Brooks should do something else other than cover people for whom he has nothing but contempt. And maybe readers would prefer the work of those who at the very least enjoy what they do.