Paul Krugman gives the argument – advanced most recently by his newest fellow columnist – that the problem with political discourse today is the rudeness and meanness of the left exactly the response it deserves:
But there’s more going on than a simple attempt to impose a double standard. All this fuss about the rudeness of the Bush administration’s critics is an attempt to preclude serious discussion of that administration’s policies. For there is no way to be both honest and polite about what has happened in these past three years.
The problem with political discourse in this country, as far as I’m concerned, has everything to do with what issues are and are not on the radar screen, who gets a voice in the discourse, and what the assumptions are which undergird the discourse – and nothing to do with the civility of the diction.