Maybe I’ve been following the news too closely lately, but I am tired of hearing every event in Washington, D.C., being described as political theater.
When President Obama tries to get a bill passed and republicans fight him, it’s called political theater. When democrats talk about the need for universal health care and republicans complain about spending, it’s called political theater. When republicans talk about the need to lower taxes during this crisis and democrats counter by saying that’s how we got into this mess, it’s called political theater.
It’s not political theater; it’s politics. Sadly, much of politics, by nature, is theater. Politics is often dramatic performance after dramatic performance, often by players that we’ve been watching on the stage for years or even decades. The performers are often more interested in how they look rather than the quality of the script, which are policies that will set the path for the country for decades or generations to follow. Instead of the dramatic performance being for a rapt audience in an auditorium, it’s for an apathetic country that spreads from the Atlantic to the Pacific.
Politics is not theater, and we’d be better served if we focused less on theater and more on policy.