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Thanksgiving, Moderate Style

November 25, 2010

It’s not just the U.S. any more: the world is a mess, and it seems to be crumbling faster than we can count the ways. Economic dominoes in Europe… cholera in Haiti… resurgent Taliban forces in Afghanistan… a major-league pissing contest in Korea… the spiritual head of the Catholic Church endorsing the use of latex by the faithful (well, faithful prostitutes)… the current state of the world would have been unimaginable in my youth, when our only worries were our report cards and the prospect of atomic annihilation.

On the home front, I’ve never known a time when so many intelligent individuals have found themselves in such desperate financial straits. I suppose we can thank the big-hearted Democrats who pushed the subprime lending folly a decade ago, along with all those clever Wall Street manipulators who made off with billions while we lost half our nest eggs. Yes, we can thank them for the Great Recession that, according to a handful of well-compensated experts, officially ended in the summer of 2009.

So what do we have to be thankful about? Most of us are still alive, which is usually a good thing. Most of us still have our original body parts, and our minds have mostly survived the battering. If we still have our friends — even if they’re just phantom images on Facebook — so much the better.

As moderates, we can celebrate the tomfoolery of the recent election campaign, in which both the far right and the far left, candidates and pundits alike, exposed themselves in their glorious derangement for all the world to see. Call me a clueless optimist, but I suspect that come the next election we’ll witness a gravitational pull back toward the center. If The New Moderate has anything to do with it, we’ll also see the left and right joining forces with us to boot the special interests out of Washington and restore our corrupted democracy to something that Jefferson and Lincoln might recognize.

Yes, it’s good to be a moderate writing a political blog in these most interesting times. I’m grateful. I really am.

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