Letters at 3AM
The Election That Refused to Die
Since Election Day developments here and abroad have both raised the stakes and highlighted what the stakes really are:
Any one of these situations would have made for banner headlines in a normal month; but the headlines have all been about W. and Gore, so even most thinking Americans remain unaware of the conjunction of crises that have reached, or are near, the boiling point. As killjoys and die-hards have been reminding us, the new millennium mathematically begins one moment after midnight on January 1, 2001. Even Shakespeare could not have written it more tellingly: The collapse of the American political process in Election Year 2000 is both an event in itself and a world-class metaphor: The American Century is over.
No matter who becomes the president-elect, America will not be able to deal from strength with this storm of a world. We will deal, if we deal at all, from weakness, and in desperation to prove ourselves and to hold on to what we have. It won't work. It never has. Empires don't fall, they crumble. During the second debate, George W. Bush said, "A great nation should be humble." Expect to be humbled.