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It Takes a Village

Spencer Ackerman says he “came away from hanging out on the MSNBC soundstage behind Union Station convinced that [Rachel Maddow’s] TV show will be a watershed moment for liberalism in this country.” I don’t know about that, but as I’ve said before I think it’s a significant development:

But this reminds me of something that’s been bugging me. Over the past two weeks I’ve been somewhat immersing myself in the “will/could Barack Obama be a transformative president” literature that was mostly written back six or more weeks ago when it looked to many that Obama was going to coast to victory in November. One flaw running through this entire genre, in my view, is that it just puts way too much emphasis on Obama and less on everyone else. Transforming the country would take a president committed to transformation, yes. But also a House Majority Leader and a Senate Finance Chair also committed to transformation wouldn’t hurt. And, yeah, it’ll probably also take a TV host. And an audience of viewers and readers who support progressive media and write letters asking for more Krugman & Meyerson & Dionne and less Richard Cohen. And people who donate and volunteer for downballot races and talk to their not-so-politically engaged coworkers and cousins about the election.

None of which is anything that people don’t already know. But sometimes I’m not sure if they quite act like they know it. I wish sometimes that important people would spend a little less time talking about what other, even more important should be doing to change the country, and a little more time just doing what they can. And, of course, to some extent that same critique could be applied to this post so I’ll stop writing and get on with things.

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