Democrats must learn some respect (Clive Crook, writing in The Financial Times, 7 September 2008)If only the Democrats could contain their sense of entitlement to govern in a rational world, and their consequent distaste for wide swathes of the US electorate, they might gain the unshakeable grip on power they feel they deserve. Winning elections would certainly be easier – and Republicans would have to address themselves more seriously to economic insecurity. But the fathomless cultural complacency of the metropolitan liberal rules this out.The attitude that expressed itself in response to the Palin nomination is the best weapon in the Republican armoury. Rely on the Democrats to keep it primed. You just have to laugh.The Palin nomination could still misfire for Mr McCain, but the liberal reaction has made it a huge success so far. To avoid endlessly repeating this mistake, Democrats need to learn some respect.It will be hard. They will have to develop some regard for the values that the middle of the country expresses when it votes Republican. Religion. Unembarrassed flag-waving patriotism. Freedom to succeed or fail through one’s own efforts. Refusal to be pitied, bossed around or talked down to. And all those other laughable redneck notions that made the United States what it is.
When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson