Thursday, August 11, 2011

Crisis of the Political Order

America’s government institutions and the political establishment that operates them are in a crisis of legitimacy.

The left believes the system is immoral due to its failure to promote its vision of redistributive social justice. The right believes the system is abandoning the Constitution and strangling liberty. And, the average citizen believes the American political system simply doesn’t work. It no longer provides prosperity and, more importantly, younger people are losing hope for a better future for themselves and their children, and among baby boomers a secure retirement is.

The debt ceiling crisis may have been the breaking point in public trust in the system. Poll after poll shows the public has lost patience with Washington.

• The country is on the wrong track.
• Major institutions, Congress, the presidency and parties hold little public confidence.
• Congressional leaders and the president have low approval – and their behavior in debt crisis was called “ridiculous,” “disgusting” and “stupid.”
• Public confidence in the recovery and the economy is dropping. Democracy is still valued, but losing support as it is now operating – partisanship, polarization, gridlock.
• Conflicts, such as over the debt ceiling, are interpreted as failures of the system and the results not supported by any faction.

When a system in crisis is about to renew its political mandate in a general election, expect volatile politics, colorful characters and extreme positions. 2012 should be unpredictable and probably scary.

Also read:
Washington Post/PewJuly 28 to 31, 2011
Huffington PostDebt deal reaction: New polls from CNN and SurveyUSA
Washington PostPoll: Majority of public has lost faith in government ability to fix economy

1 comment:

Kubikhan said...

A "Machiavellian Moment" for the Republic, to quote JGA Pocock, eh?

I think it may even be worse than you suggest, as I would add that the Right ALSO believes the government no longer promotes its version of a just social order (one Nation, under God), and the Left is ALSO quite convinced that the Constitution is not being followed, at least since the 2000 elections.

"Scary" will be the driving force, you're right. the 2012 slogan, "Fear we can believe in?"