Friday, December 17, 2010

A holiday gift: principled civility?

This holiday season, there’s a special feeling in the air — acrimony.

It radiates from Washington, where almost everyone seems to feel betrayed by the tax deal or the angry reaction to it. Liberal Democrats complain loudest, but clearly, President Barack Obama is irritated by the left’s furious second-guessing. Republicans have also found a way to take offense — certainly at the president’s analogy of negotiating with hostage takers. If they are kidnappers, what are the House Democrats?
We are a long way from the new Washington that both Obama and his predecessor promised. But perhaps this is a gift of the lame-duck Congress: the reminder that all should abandon dreams of post-partisan politics and return to the core values of his or her party. Civility is important, but in politics — as in life — it is no substitute for a political party’s fidelity to its core ideals.

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