More Partisanship, Please…

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… ’cause the Council on Foreign Relations says it’s bad:

Rising Partisanship Weakening U.S. Role in the World

Council Study Recommends Steps to Reduce Partisan Divide

October 5, 2005 — The current climate of partisan politics is weakening U.S. primacy and American leadership, concludes a new report from the Council on Foreign Relations. The jam-packed Tuesday-through-Thursday schedule for members of Congress means that fewer Democrats and Republicans actually know and relate to one another in Washington. Thus, foreign policy is often conceived and hatched on one side of the aisle, without the constructive, honing fire of a truly deliberative, non-ideological process, argues the report.

“People naturally disagree about who is responsible for the partisan tone and tactics in Washington, DC, these days, but most agree on this: It’s worse, it’s more intense, and it’s nastier,” says report author Nancy E. Roman, vice president and director of the Council’s Washington Program. The report, Both Sides of the Aisle: A Call for Bipartisan Foreign Policy, says the United States should work with all—not half—of its collective foreign policy brain and talent if it is to maintain primacy in today’s globalized world.

A bipartisan deliberative process matters because it produces better and less ideological policy that is more often perceived as American policy—not just Democratic or Republican. It also makes it more likely that policy will remain relatively consistent as administrations change hands and will be perceived as credible from abroad.

The “constructive, honing fire of a truly deliberative, non-ideological process,” that’s a real gut-buster! A side-splitter! I haven’t had a laugh like this in a long, long time.

As someone who is not committed to American “primacy in today’s globalized world” and hopes that, someday soon, we Americans can live in a normal country (i.e., the kind of country that doesn’t deploy most of its army abroad, that doesn’t depose governments or fantasize about it, and doesn’t assume that God or history gave it “global responsibilities”), I’m for just about anything that reduces the US “role in the world.” So please, more ugly partisanship, more ideological polarization, more grandstanding for the teevee cameras, less time for contemplation and deliberation.

9:06 am on October 5, 2005