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Mount Orégano
Sue Burke
Another difference between Spanish and US politics 
27th-Oct-2008 09:20 pm

Earlier this month, New York Times op-ed columnist Roger Cohen talked with Spain's prime minister, José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero. The article is here: http://www.nytimes.com/2008/10/09/opinion/09Cohen.html Among other interesting comments, Zapatero said that the United States was a "diverse, creative, dynamic" country, but "it does not need to have a mission."

Cohen strongly disagreed, and so do I. Moreover, I think that if you asked Biden, Palen, McCain or Obama if the United States has a mission, each one would not hesitate to say yes and could easily and sincerely explain what they think that mission is.

That's hard to explain to people overseas: America has a purpose beyond merely continuing to exist, and if we lose sight of that mission, if we are false to our ideals, we stop being America. And this makes our politics, at times, not just a question of who wins, but what wins — what vision, what mission. The United States is not a historical people, it is a living idea.

28th-Oct-2008 09:51 pm (UTC)
Bravo. Very well said.
29th-Oct-2008 02:21 am (UTC)

It's been a long time since I've heard anyone refer to "the American Experiment." That's what this country is. I don't know when the experiment will be finished. But it isn't finished yet.

The US Constitution is unique, and just short of miraculous. That it has survived so many attempts to overturn it says something about the brilliance of those who wrote it.

Thanks for this. It made me realize that, despite my depression the last 8 years, this country can survive the latest attempts against the Constitution -- if we want to.

I want to.
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