If it is one thing that this election has taught me its the value of compromise. In recent years our country has been plagued by the sentiment that extremism is a virtue. Nowadays wherever you look in America it is always the person willing to go to the extreme that gets the press coverage, that becomes the icon. To borrow a phrase from President Obama “That’s not who we are.”
America has in years past condemned extremism and celebrated the spirit of compromise. Wherein people of different backgrounds, ideologies, and socioeconomic persuasions can come together and reach an accommodation for the greater good. Today unfortunately, extremism has become a big part of American culture and infiltrated American politics. There is plenty of blame to go around for this, not the least of which is the commercialization of politics by various media outlets, this is because extremism not compromise brings in the ratings. But if we waste valuable energy finding a source for the asinine extremism that has weaved its way into our political discourse we will invariably play into the accusatory nature that characterizes the extremist, and frankly, we cannot afford to do this anymore!
The bulk of the huddled masses are being drowned out by the zealotry of the extremists on the left and right. The moderates are now required to be as infantile, uncompromising, and impossible to work with just to secure campaign funding and the all important sound bite. This is not how our system is intended to operate and the proof of that is in the manner it has been “operating” as of late. We desperately require the spirit of commonality and compromise to be embraced again, and for the extremist to be shunned and ridiculed for their stubbornness and inability to just get the job done.
As it pertains to our current economic woes we require the Republican party to abandon their trickle down economic religion and begin to accept that in order to stabilize our bludgeoned economy we need to raise taxes on some “job-creators.” Which is something that should have been done long before the massive expenditures of the Bush administration were approved. With respect to the Democrats they need to come to terms with the fact that we cannot dig ourselves out of the fiscal hole without cutting some social programs and the need to accept that economic reality. The problem is that both of these realities mean one thing “compromise.” Although compromise is what a functioning republic is all about it is not the least bit entertaining enough for a populous who loves a good street fight.
Not everything vital to survival is entertaining or fun. Politics at its core can be rather boring but that by no means makes it unnecessary. America needs to take a long hard look at itself and its extremist culture and see the results or lack there of that it has brought. It needs to once again champion the virtues of compromise and accept the fact that while we possess different ideas we also possess a common American identity. It need to turn back to a time where progress is not measure by the loudness of your rhetoric but by the content of your ideas.