October 03, 2004


The issues don't change much from decade to decade, and it's fascinating to watch how arguments pro or con a particular point go back and forth between parties depending upon the current occupant of the White House. One thing that has changed between those halcyon pre-chad, pre-9/11 days and our Fahrenheit 911/527's/MoveOn, campaign-finance-reform-loophole era is the tenor of the debate. C-Span rebroadcast Cheney's and Lieberman's oh-so-civilized and -- in Donald Rumsfeld's term -- helpful debate last night. Low key, measured and rational.

Things aren't really that way now. Campaign finance "reform" has been enormously destructive to civil society, in my opinion.