The single greatest statement to the Democratic Party’s current political and intellectual bankruptcy is that after three years of failures, half-measures, and reversals, there is no credible Democratic primary challenger to President Obama from the left. Meanwhile, the single greatest statement to the Republican Party’s current political and intellectual bankruptcy is that after three years of President Obama’s failures, half-measures, and reversals, the most credible candidate they can offer is Gov. Mitt Romney.
Even the most democratic of democracies need leaders; figures who personify ideological positions and enable a broad spectrum of people to coalesce around them into groups capable of political action. The American democracy is in woeful lack of such figures these days, with such potential leaders having found more rewarding work elsewhere than politics. This sad fact gives the current activist movements in the United States (on both the Left and the Right) the character of giants without heads; stumbling in the direction they hopefully want to go, causing some damage as they lurch, but mostly just creating a frightening spectacle.