Been a rough week on the Hill, and for those who live there. The rescue/bailout/whatever-it’s-called has left America wondering what good could possibly remain in her Capitol. The pandering & the pork, the self-congratulation over the oversight of the demise of commercial lending, it leaves America with a bitter taste in her mouth.
But then comes Len Downie Jr, former editor of the Post, with an editorial to prop us back up again, despite what all the media says. A taste:
For all its partisanship and jockeying for power and influence, Washington’s culture — with roots in the New Deal, World War II, Lyndon Johnson’s Great Society and the Reagan Revolution — is receptive to new ideas and new people. It is steadily refreshed by idealistic young professionals who come here to work and learn for low wages in the backrooms of power. And it readily assimilates waves of older hands who arrive with each new administration and member of Congress, and then stay in the public arena here.
“The truth is that many newcomers stay forever, secretly at home in the city everyone loves to hate,” [Marjorie] Williams has written. “As each administration departs, it leaves behind a layer of flotsam on the shore — lobbyists, lawyers, public relations people — all too smitten or too connected to ever move away. The city happily absorbs its quadrennial infusions of new blood. But Washington always does more to change its newcomers than the newcomers do to change it.”
Thank you, Mr. Downie. We needed that.