. . . Tuesday September 28, 2004

Meanwhile, Back in America

Mathew Gross points out that during this election cycle, there has been almost no public discourse about the fact that the next president may make at least one new pick for the Supreme Court or the fact that oil prices are going through the roof.

These are just two of the issues that have been lost in the all Iraq all the time public debate. Actually, it’s not all Iraq and the war on terrorism. It’s also about Vietnam and Alabama in the 70s.

This is by design. It’s not a coincidence that the Bushies pushed to have foreign policy headline the first (and therefore the most watched) debate session. For several years we’ve been fixated on the war on terror and the war in Iraq. Meanwhile, a rather one-sided cultural war has been taking place.

This cultural divide (Church/State issues, stem cells, gay marriage, Janet Jackson’s knocker, etc) rarely even comes up on the campaign trail. And think of some of the issues that often dominate a presidential election. The economy. Healthcare. Crime. Jails. Judges.

These issues and more are largely off the table in this election. Instead its all about war and perceptions of personal values and character. That is partially a result of the times in which we live. But it’s also a result of one side framing the election around the issues where they think they will win and the other side letting the frame stay there.

Concentration is important!