The Electric Commentary

Wednesday, November 03, 2004

Looking in the mirror.

Apropos of my post below (and Ahren's post here), Megan McArdle had this to say:

I SEE SOMETHING VERY HEALTHY ON THE LEFT-WING BLOGS: commenters who are looking at themselves, rather than blaming Karl Rove, the supreme court, or [cough] conservative media bias for their loss. The most destructive trend of the last four years has been the left's resort to ever-more-tenuous conspiracy theories to explain their political failures.

This is certainly not a unique vice of the left. Libertarians have it in spades. I've sat through aproximately 8 zillion heated conversations about how the reason libertarians don't have more power is that the electoral system is stacked against us, when it's crystal clear to me that the reason we don't have more power is that a clear majority of Americans don't agree with us. They like middle-class entitlements, drug laws, mortgage tax deductions, farm subsidies, and most of the rest of it. If we want to see our programmes enacted, it won't help us to change the system (proportional representation is the usual magic bullet of choice for libertarians) if we don't first change America -- at which point we won't need to change the system.

Though of course I'm not exactly rooting for it to happen, I firmly believe that the left can stage a convincing political comeback, if they'll stop looking for a scapegoat and start looking for some new ideas. I think we may be witnessing the beginning of that change.

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