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April 14, 2011

In which Joan Didion articulates my lack of interest in federal politics

“When we talk about the process, then, we are talking, increasingly, not about “the democratic process,” or the general mechanism affording the citizens of a state a voice in its affairs, but the reverse: a mechanism seen as so specialized that access to it is correctly limited to its own professionals, to those who manage policy and those who report on it, to those who run the polls and those who quote them, to those who ask and those who answer the questions on the Sunday shows, to the media consultants, to the columnists, to the issues advisers, to those who give the off-the-record breakfasts and to those who attend them; to that handful of insiders who invent, year in and year out, the narrative of public life. “I didn’t realize you were a political junkie,” Marty Kaplan, the former Washington Post reporter and Mondale speechwriter who is now married to Susan Estrich, the manager of the Dukakis campaign, said when I mentioned that I planned to write about the campaign; the assumption here, that the narrative should be not just written only by its own specialists but also legible only to its own specialists, is why, finally, an American presidential campaign raises questions that go so vertiginously to the heart of the structure.” –from “Insider Baseball” (which I’m reading in After Henry).

2 thoughts on “In which Joan Didion articulates my lack of interest in federal politics”

  1. “You may not care about politics, but politics cares about you.” – Lenin (supposedly)

    1. Kerry says:

      Well, it’s nice to know that someone does. And oh, I actually do care about politics, which is why I find the Federal election so incredibly depressing.

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