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Roman Fever

3
The Ghost of a Flea1/04/2014 8:22:30 pm PST

At the tail of the piece:

In all, it has become the background drone of our politics, the dull hum of impending doom. Let’s understand why this thinking appeals. Envisioning decline is addictive. It offers us the chance to imagine our times as extraordinary and to cast ourselves in heroic roles to meet them. And the thrill demands a higher dose of doom each year.

But let’s also understand what this thinking does. If our republic is at stake, then it’s reasonable to treat an elected president as illegitimate. If our republic is at stake, then it’s fair to nullify laws that offend us. If our republic is really at stake, then defaulting on our debts to save it—paying any price at all—is a bargain.