I adore Andy Sullivan – from a distance. His luminescent idealism glows with just the right tint of irritable and it catches my eye every day when I peruse the days blogs. We need more people like Andrew who never accept “as is” if “might become” is only a “just do this” away.
Almost daily Andy asks the GOP Vice-presidential nominee to submit to the press. When the McCain campaign bans the press Andy wonders if this is happening in America .
This is America, Andrew, where we do not let facts obscure our vision.
Idealism of the Sullivan variety is like most idealism. It sometimes forgets where it is when it chases “ought.” Mr. Sullivan looks down on Sarah Palin like a helicopter pilot spotting a pack of wolves from the air who hollers at the armed guys in the passenger seats to shoot while they can, and he is flummoxed when they only stare.
Idealism amuses us Americans. Sure, we are an exceptional lot. Yet, just because we Americans know what we “ought” to do does not mean we are inclined to do it. For that sort of dish we need to be hungry. But hungry we rarely are, because we constantly stuff ourselves with snacks and almost always spoil our dinner.
We snack on simple characterizations, slogans, and tasty fear. A real meal? We do not have the patience and will to prepare lasting nourishment for ourselves, nor do we have the determination to hunt down and kill the beast that might starve our freedom. Here, have another snack, instead.
There is something superhero-like in Sarah’s schtick. Never mind that she would gleefully shoot your dog if, in crossing her path to progress, the animal might delay her journey. Because superheros know what they are doing we accept the destruction their actions create, all the while hoping Bowser and the rest of what makes life good survives.
Americans value superheros because superheros do what needs to be done. So, why question them? They do our work so we can eat more snacks.
So when Mr. Sullivan idealistically demands Ms. Palin cast herself at the feet of the infotainment pool of what is left of American journalism so they might accurately take measure, he misses the fact that we Americans just do not scrutinize our superheroes. No. We just believe in them while we can. And, who wants to change America?