It’s going to be a while before I overcome the deep feelings of depression induced by the results of the election this year. Having read Jay Nordlinger’s electoral edition of Impromptus this morning, however, I feel a little better. Jay calls it “Bitterfest 2012” and fills it up with anger modulated by his wry sense of humor.
I know am not alone in my feelings of depression. In this case, depression is anger turned inward. Dear readers, let’s get in touch with our anger and turn it outward. Jay’s column is cheaper than a trip to the therapist and might even be more effective. Dr. Nordlinger is in the house:
The American public took a look at Obama and his record. They took a look at Mitt and his. And they said, “Four more years!” Four more years of Obama, and all he represents.
You might say they were snookered the first time, in ’08. This time they knew what they were getting — and asked for it. Demanded it.
After he was defeated for reelection in 1989, New York Mayor Ed Koch was asked if he would ever run for office again. “No,” Koch replied. “The people have spoken — and they must be punished.” Indeed. (Looking for this quote on the Web, I found it in Marc Thiessen’s excellent post-election notes.)
Dr. Nordlinger (as I’ll call him this morning) counsels us against blaming our champion in the election:
Every time a Republican presidential nominee loses, I hear the same thing, from Republicans, and especially from movement-conservative types: “The candidate wasn’t good enough. He should have done this, that, or the other thing. Or he should have been someone else. Then the people would have voted for us. Our standard-bearer was defective.”
I think this is baloney, particularly in 2012. The voters had a clear choice. Each presidential nominee was a good — very good — representative of his point of view. The voters had plenty of information, no matter how biased the media are. They had plenty of good, solid information. Conventions, debates, etc.
And they chose.
The Left is winning, in more than the electoral sense. The Left is winning culturally — psychologically, spiritually, if you will. They control education, the entertainment industry . . . need I give the whole list?
We are talking about some deep matters here, not about simple electioneering. I trust you know what I mean.
Dr. Nordlinger has a bit more on this later in the column:
I believe this about the election: that we gave it our best shot. That we “put it all on the field,” leaving “nothing in the locker room,” as Romney said. I think he was an excellent nominee. He made some mistakes — but anyone would. We worked hard. We had plenty of money. We offered a clear choice. Romney was a first-class alternative to Obama.
And the people said no. “Four more years!”
The thing is, in a democracy, the people decide. It’s their responsibility. They determine what kind of country we’ll be. All you can do is offer them an honest choice. They do the rest.
We may need another visit to take up this issue and explore our anger with our candidate, but we’ve got a lot of ground to cover this morning. Let’s get in touch with our anger about our fellow citizens:
Some of my colleagues are almost comically incapable of blaming the people — of holding them responsible for their votes. This is charming, in a way, in addition to comical. Some political version of “The customer is always right.”
I don’t have this problem, thank heaven. I think the people are in fact responsible. And often wrong.
As might doesn’t make right, neither does a majority.
I think the people — the holy, sacred people — are wrong about movies, music, morality. A whole range of things. But they’re supposed to be brimming with wisdom when they enter the voting booths on Election Day?
That would be strange.
To say the least. That’s why the Constitution is designed to protect our rights against the mob. That’s why we have three branches of government. That’s where the Supreme Court comes in. Oh, yeah:
Well, we won’t have to worry about the integrity of the Constitution. Because, no matter what the administration does, John Roberts will be there to stop what is unconstitutional. Yessiree, that’s our chief: caring not a fig about political pressures . . .
Last Inauguration Day, Roberts messed up Obama’s presidential oath. This Inauguration Day, things should be pretty chummy between the two.
Dr. Nordlinger has some parting advice that strikes a chord with me:
The temptation, for some of us, is to retreat from politics. To give up, essentially. To cede the field to the Left. I mean, just give it to them: socialism, abortion on demand, the whole nine yards. It’s their world. They own it. The rest of us live in a kind of dhimmitude. We should just tend to our families, our churches, our friends — cling to our guns and religion.
That’s the temptation. But as David Pryce-Jones put it to me, in his wise and stirring way, the temptation is to be resisted. Hardly any good would come from giving in. Not even peace of mind, probably.
You may want to check in with Dr. Nordlinger yourself this morning for the full session.