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The Age of Innocence
New York Times ^ | May 18, 2012 | David Brooks

Posted on 05/18/2012 7:13:48 AM PDT by C19fan

The people who pioneered democracy in Europe and the United States had a low but pretty accurate view of human nature. They knew that if we get the chance, most of us will try to get something for nothing. They knew that people generally prize short-term goodies over long-term prosperity. So, in centuries past, the democratic pioneers built a series of checks to make sure their nations wouldn’t be ruined by their own frailties.

(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com ...


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Culture/Society; Government
KEYWORDS: conservatism
David Brooks channeling the Founders and Burke.
1 posted on 05/18/2012 7:13:50 AM PDT by C19fan
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To: C19fan

I’m not sure it is true to say the ‘pioneers of democracy’ where the ones who introduced checks and balances. In my view, they were always there as a compromise with the landed oligarchs who where always reluctant to give the hoi polloi the vote for the very reasons given....


2 posted on 05/18/2012 7:17:56 AM PDT by sinsofsolarempirefan
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To: C19fan
"David Brooks channeling the Founders and Burke."
Wow! That would be a new experience for him. He left the "conservative" reservation a long time ago for the bright lights and notoriety of being an establishment "moderate."
3 posted on 05/18/2012 7:25:09 AM PDT by Sudetenland (Anybody but Obama!!!!)
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To: C19fan

I no longer think people can handle democracy. It requires too much work and too many people just want to sit on the fat butts and have “free” stuff handed to them. And the producers can’t keep dragging them along forever. This grand experiment is failing IMO.


4 posted on 05/18/2012 7:41:09 AM PDT by Clock King (Ellisworth Toohey was right: My head's gonna explode.)
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To: C19fan
American and European capitals still have the structures inherited from the past, but without the self-restraining ethos that made them function.

There is one group of voters that is calling for the self-restraint Brooks says is missing from the equation: the Tea Party conservatives.

But would Brooks -- the high-minded moderate -- ever deign to recognize that? Much less applaud us?

5 posted on 05/18/2012 7:45:34 AM PDT by okie01
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To: Clock King

>>>I no longer think people can handle democracy. It requires too much work and too many people just want to sit on the fat butts and have “free” stuff handed to them. And the producers can’t keep dragging them along forever. This grand experiment is failing IMO.>>>

If the grand experiment is failing, it’s because Welfare was established to provide for those who COULD NOT work, not for those sitting in an apartment which YOU paid for, watching a TV which YOU paid for on a sofa YOU paid for, even though they’re able to work for a living. Stop the money for those who refuse to get a doctor’s exam to find out who can work and who can’t.


6 posted on 05/18/2012 8:23:31 AM PDT by kitkat (Obama, ROPE and CHAINS.)
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To: C19fan

Of course as a liberal POS he left out the most efffective protection our democracy had: namely laws designed to prevent the parasites from voting. By limiting the vote to land owning white males they hoped to restrict voting to those who actually had the welfare of the country as their guiding interest. When we allowed all to vote we condemned the United States to the same path all democracies throughout history have followed: Bankruptcy due to the masses continually voting themselves bread and circuses out of the public coffers.


7 posted on 05/18/2012 9:23:45 AM PDT by MtBaldy (If Obama is the answer, it must have been a really stupid question)
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To: C19fan

“The Age of Innocence” is a novel by Edith Wharton which was made into a lavish movie directed by Martin Scorcese that stars Michelle Pfeiffer, Daniel Day-Lewis and Winona Ryder.

A good story (Pulitzer prize winner) and a well done movie.

I mention these things so you know that David Brooks didn’t originate the phrase ‘The Age of Innocence’.


8 posted on 05/18/2012 10:07:20 AM PDT by cymbeline
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