Whom to vote for today? We have here two New York Times columnists, both writing on the elections. Here's Brooks:
There are moments when I think, These are exactly the sorts of mistakes that administrations should be thrown out of office for.
Then other considerations come into play. The first is Kerry. He's been attacked for being a flip-flopper, but his core trait is that he is monumentally selfish. Since joining the Senate, he has never attached himself to an idea or movement larger than his own career advancement.
I doubt that this is true, but even if it were, I'd rather have an ordinary egotist in the White House than someone who believes that God speaks through him. Well, you know that Brooks is not going to vote for Kerry, though he admits that Bush has done a crappy job. He's too scared of terrorism and he wants to get rid of Social Security and Medicare, because they're "asphyxiating" the government. Better have the elderly asphyxiated by untreated disease and hunger, at least if one is called David Brooks and has a nice, fat paycheck.
Then here's Krugman:
Here's what a correspondent from Florida wrote to Joshua Marshall, of talkingpointsmemo.com: "To see people coming out - elderly, disabled, blind, poor; people who have to hitch rides, take buses, etc. - and then staying in line for hours and hours and hours ... Well, it's humbling. And it's awesome. And it's kind of beautiful."
Yes, it is. I always get a little choked up when I go to the local school to cast my vote. The humbleness of the surroundings only emphasizes the majesty of the process: this is democracy, America's great gift to the world, in action.
He is going to vote for Kerry, but he isn't giving us a last minute shopping list of reasons. Instead, he is celebrating the right to vote and the seriousness with which ordinary citizens take it.
I think that I'm going to vote for Krugman.