Historically, the American public -- confident, independent and undemanding-has not expected much out of Washington. Live your silver lives of limousines, private jets, power and celebrity; just do no permanent damage to the nation.
But in the last two years our Babylon on the Potomac -- with its irrational and unconscionable saddling of our grandchildren with multi trillion dollar debt (and its bizarre foreign policy of loathing our friends and ourselves, and loving our enemies)-- has vexed the public into a state of deep fear and anguish.
However, Americans don't stay scared long -- we quickly convert fear to anger and anger to action. And so, now, two years of national panic and fear are being returned to sender in Washington. Now it is the ruling elite who find their daytime thoughts fretful and their night time sleep fitful. Welcome to the troubled mind of Washington in Spring 2010.
Democrats look fearfully westward across the Potomac River, wondering how harsh will be the people's judgment against them for their disgraceful behavior.
Republicans look fearfully inward, wondering whether our own inadequate performance in the preceding decade entitles us to the public trust. (The answers are: To the Democrats: very harsh; and to the Republicans: no we are not entitled to the trust.)
These justified moods of Democratic Party fear of public wrath and Republican Party indulgence in self-loathing caused a particularly silly reaction to last week's elections in Pennsylvania, Arkansas and Kentucky.
The 8 percent victory edge of the late John Murtha's staffer in Pennsylvania's 12th congressional district drove the Democrats manically to the conclusion that they are almost home and dry in the November elections. While that same election depressed the GOP into thinking that they are unworthy and have blown a sure, dominating victory in November.
Likewise, Democrats are thrilled that the philosophically eccentric Rand Paul's win in Kentucky means the public will turn against strange outsiders in November. And Republicans worry that if tea party-supported candidates don't behave like good little housebroken Washington Republicans -- all is lost.
Blankley, who had been suffering from stomach cancer, died Saturday night at Sibley Memorial Hospital in Washington, his wife, Lynda Davis, said Sunday.
In his long career as a political operative and pundit, his most visible role was as a spokesman for and adviser to Gingrich from 1990 to 1997. Gingrich became House Speaker when Republicans took control of the U.S. House of Representatives following the 1994 midterm elections.
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