Reviving Liberal Republicanism in America

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"Is It Six O'Clock Yet?"

“Is It Six O’Clock Yet?”

Politics has never been “beanbag.” Progressive Democratic Speaker of the House of Representatives Tip O’Neill and conservative Republican President Ronald Reagan fought their partisan battles passionately.

Check out this book by Chris Matthews called  Tip and the Gipper: When Politics Worked  about their relationship before and after six p.m

Check out this book by Chris Matthews called Tip and the Gipper: When Politics Worked about their relationship before and after six p.m

O’Neill said of Reagan: “The evil is in the White House at the present time. And that evil is a man who has no care and no concern for the working class of America and the future generations of America... He's cold. He's mean. He's got ice water for blood.' Reagan in turn referred to O’Neill as the character in the video game Pac-Man — “a round thing that gobbles up money.”

Yet... there are stories about them asking each other “Is it six o'clock yet?” At six o'clock ‎they ceased to be adversaries. They drank together and socialized. And this from O’Neill’s son: “What both men deplored more than the other’s political philosophy was stalemate, and a country that was so polarized by ideology and party politics that it could not move forward. There were tough words and important disagreements over everything from taxation to Medicare and military spending. But there was yet a stronger commitment to getting things done.” ‎

We need at least to get back to there. And if you think politics has always been uncivil‎, and the above story doesn't convince you of how far we have fallen, then watch this one minute video.

Arthur WinterComment