Wednesday, April 25, 2007
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The Jonathan Rauch interview
Let me join Andrew Sullivan and Virginia Postrel in linking to this Reason interview with National Jounal columnist Jonathan Rauch. Uneknownst to him, Rauch is partly responsible for the creation of this blog.
Two parts of the interview that stand out. The first reflects Rauch's spot-on take on government:
[R]ight-sizing government, if you mean imposing some preconceived size that you or I or someone else might have, is impossible. Impossible, probably inconceivable and simply not going to happen ever.The second reflects Rauch's wariness of blog triumphalism:
I'm not a fan of the idea that the journalist and the journalist's attitude should be front and center. I think that a good journalist's duty is to get out of the way. The hardest thing about journalism--the hardest thing, a much higher art than being clever--is just to get out of the way, to show the leader of the world as the reader would see it if the reader were there. Just to be eyes and ears. Calvin Trillin, another writer I greatly admired who steered me towards journalism, once said that getting himself out of his stories was like taking off a very tight shirt in a very small phone booth. He's right.Read the whole thing. posted by Dan on 04.25.07 at 03:20 PM
Unfortunately we've got a ticking timebomb in entitlements that is going to make it impossible to ignore the size of government. Either the holiest of the holy, social security gets mucked with significantly, or the house of cards tumbles down. And it will happen in the most prolonged and destructive way- raising taxes enormously which will push us into a spiral of negative growth and recession.
If it wasnt so serious, i'd be fascinated just to see how the next 20 years are going to play out. Western style governments always gravitate towards redistributing wealth from the rich to the middle class- with occasional corruption ridden projects getting to the poor, and even more rarely a truly effective program to benefit the people its billed to benefit. There is going to be a political civil war between middle class baby boomers who want to glom their 30 year retirements on the golf course and in Florida condos against everybody with a job. We are about to see the absurd situation where the young and struggling trying to start families are drowned in debt by the old and relatively wealthy.posted by: Mark Buehner on 04.25.07 at 03:20 PM [permalink]
"The second reflects Dowd's wariness of blog triumphalism"
You mean Rauch's.posted by: Pejman Yousefzadeh on 04.25.07 at 03:20 PM [permalink]
Dowd is good at what she does? Then what she does isn't good.posted by: huggy on 04.25.07 at 03:20 PM [permalink]
"Dowd is good at what she does? Then what she does isn't good."
That was exactly the point I took away from this statement.posted by: arr-squared on 04.25.07 at 03:20 PM [permalink]
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