The Strib editorial board, in so many words
by Steve Timmer
Nov 6, 2016, 6:30 PM

This is why you can’t get a majority opinion out of the Supreme Court

In the Op Ex section of the Strib on today, rather than trying to write a single editorial about What the Hell is Going On, they gave everybody some ink in signed pieces. They called it What, us worry?

It was pretty good, really. I can only imagine the editorial board meeting leading up to the decision to do this. I can see Scott Gillespie, like Chief Justice Roberts, throwing up his hands and saying, “Okay, enough! Write what you want! Screw it!”

I think that Scott Gillespie has the best take on the election, though: This too, will pass. I’ve said the same thing to a number of my lefty friends who believe that the end of the Republic is near:

Spare us, please, from the incessant fearmongering over possible outcomes of the 2016 presidential election.

Paul Waldeman (well, and a couple of Strib writers, too, in their pieces today) at the Washington Post probably provided one of the best pearl-clutching performances of the cycle.

Gillespie’s reasoning, though?

Let’s take a breath. The U.S. has endured a Civil War, the Great Depression, the Cuban missile crisis, the Cold War, Watergate, Bush v. Gore and 9/11, not to mention two world wars, Vietnam, Afghanistan and Iraq (twice). Oh, and don’t forget disco.

I thought the disco reference was especially trenchant. I mean, seriously, who wasn’t scared of John Travolta?

Really, though, the Republic is resilient, which was Gillespie’s point.

Doug Tice, touching the same elephant, so to speak, blindfolded, opined that the problem was just too much democracy:

This year, the symptoms of hyper-democracy [?] struck. Radicalism and circus showmanship hijacked the 2016 election. Trump is in the center ring, of course, but the near-takeover of the Democrat[ic; don’t be a shlub, Doug] nomination by an avowed socialist is also a warning.

We need to restore our political parties’ ability to govern themselves, shape the choice of candidates and steer clear of the worst mistakes possible in pure, unfiltered popularity contests.

Doug doesn’t like populism; he reminds me of a quote attributed to Jesse Helms: Democracy was great until it fell into the wrong hands. But Doug seems like David Brooks, denying being there at the conception (I especially like that word here) of the right wing populist movement known as the Tea Party. They were all for it until it became an effective political force.

I do agree with Doug, though, that the parties have been marginalized in a post-Citizens United world, and not exactly for the better.

The other writers were variously dire, but I did appreciate John Rash and his shout out to the Prince of Social Media, Anthony Weiner.

Where am I going with this? I’m not sure, really, except to commend What, us worry? to you if you haven’t read it. It was fun to read all of the voices that go into the Institutional Voice of the Star Tribune. If nothing else, you will appreciate Gillespie’s job in trying to get this group to speak with a single voice every day.

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