As I made clear on the show over the weekend, I was and remain overjoyed that Governor Romney selected Paul Ryan as his running mate.
It was a huge move, for reasons I expressed in my partly-tongue-in-cheek open letter to Governor Romney last week; it wasn’t the “safe” move, but it was the right move, for the future of this country.
Every talking head in the country spent the weekend solemnly intoning that “this choice changes the conversation”, which proves only that the the barriers for entry into the “Talking Head” business aren’t nearly high enough.
Democrat talking heads giggle their smug giggles and chortle “this changes the conversation away from the economy – the last four years – and changes it to entitlement reform, the next four years!”.
Let’s forget for a moment that Obama and the Dems have not the faintest hint of a plan for reforming entitlements, much less recovering the economy. Beyond that – do Democrats think the long-term economy is in any way extricable from reforming entitlements? They think entitlements can ever be reformed without a vigorous and growing economy?
But the talking heads have a point; this election offers this country a choice. This election is a battle between Silly America and Serious America. Silly America believes that if you just demigog issues long and hard enough, and focus obsessively on contraceptives and tax returns, and ignore the real issues facing this society.
And there really are two outcomes.
If Serious America wins, and Romney and Ryan win, and they dig in and engage the economy and face the entitlement cliff, a lot of long, hard, non-sexy work will follow. The nation will have a chance – provided the people stay serious, and keep serious governments in office – to avoid becoming a cold Greece with a more vapid celebrity class.
If Silly America wins, Obama carries on in office. This nation runs up to the cliff smiling one of those smug, NPR-audience smiles as we sail off into oblivion.
And America will deserve to fly off that cliff, with all that that entails.
And then we’ll need a new conversation. It’s hard one to describe; thinik of the one an oncologist has with someone with Stage IV cancer.