Ads are being run against de Santis; he voted, they claim, to increase the retirement age amidst other possible solutions. He, like Ryan, are youngsters pushing their elders off cliffs; of course, some might see politicians manfully taking on a long term problem.
These ads may be effective but with them mere discussions become toxic – the opposite of a statesman’s approach Bush began with a high-powered, sensible committee; 9/11 intervened. Maybe they would have come up with nothing but it remains the problem it was well over twenty years ago. How many policy debates follow the same pattern?
The problem is the context as well. Trump is pursued by truly demonic (and unconstitutional) opponents. Ones who have sold us out for a few gold pieces to the environmentalists, the communists, the totalitarians, the. . . While they take pleasure in making our futures carless, gasless, air conditionless, they embrace nihilism. Indeed, half the country seems in an intense sado/masochistic relation with their overlords.
In a petty way, this ad poses a dilemma. Our positions imply to the simple minded that either
a) we buy into the least statesman-like and most perilous of positions about our future in that policy area,
b) we buy into the most aggressive, constitution-be-damned, politically motivated of our opponents clown shows.
Neither has our long-run interests in mind; both personalize and trivialize policy in an increasingly serious world.
I had hoped de Santis would run and Trump wouldn’t: I’d assumed Trump wouldn’t naturally take a statesman’s approach, more likely a pugilist’s, during the fallow period. There was hope: once elected he sometimes made good choices not traditionally considered winners. But this toxic perspective that will affect him as well as de Santis, making a good solution less likely. Surely no solution leaves the system untouched. Well, probably the Democrats have one – print more money.