The ghost story

Boston Globe
by James Carroll

02/25/08

The unfolding political contest is a window into America’s soul. The nation is arguing with itself. The candidates embody separate impulses. As voters choose sides, a red state-blue state polarity again takes shape. Within the Democratic Party, the dispute is narrower, but still sharp. Yet in truth, each citizen carries within herself or himself the structure of the conflict: hard versus soft, experience versus change, programmed versus spontaneous, self-interest versus empathy, hope in an open future versus lessons from the past. Politics, by isolating these positions and attributing them to one candidate over against another, parodies the interior struggle of every American...

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Informant: Thomas L. Knapp



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