In Praise of Moderation

Last week, I was sitting on the couch, goofing around on the computer, watching the primary results come in. Trump won Florida handily. Sanders wasn’t threatening to win this time, but the fact that we are even worried about this guy really speaks to the state of politics in 2016.
I’m going to roll back the clock to 1986, 30 years ago, when American politics was completely different. Remember? We used to complain that Democrats and Republicans were essentially indistinguishable. After all, they used to cross the aisle frequently to vote in favor of the other party’s legislation. I would characterize both parties in 1986 as fairly centrist.
I am a little bit nostalgic for those days.
The cool thing about the Internet is that you get to find out that most people are basically out of their minds. Spend much time on Facebook? You get political opinions on Facebook, for sure – extreme right and extreme left. The vast majority of my Facebook friends are either closet communists or nativist Trumpkins. Nobody, and I mean absolutely nobody in between.
When I was in my twenties, I thought being in between meant that you were a sellout, that if you really had any principles you would occupy an extreme position. For a period in my life, you could have called me a pretty extreme libertarian. I’ve come to view political polarization as not being a very good thing.

This post was published at Mauldin Economics on MARCH 24, 2016.

 

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