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Sinners in the Eyes of an Angry Pragmatist

Before you read my opinion, I’d like to have a quick aside. In this piece I talk a lot about the negative consequences of “heat.” I spend a lot of time in the article criticising the institutions of the US, and thus I worry about contributing to this heat. I have no intention of blaming any single individual or group for the sorry state of US politics. I don’t desire to contribute to this heat. Instead, I hope to provide a dramatic warning and analysis of the ills that face our system. By defining our problems, and knowing how they function, I believe policymakers, civil society, and the US people at large can make sincere and effective reforms to heal and improve our political system.

The US political system is at war with itself. If one can imagine US politics as a body, then it is a person surrounded by a swarm of hungry mosquitos while suffering from a temperature of 104 ℉. Has the US ever been given a clean bill of health? No. But it’s rarely been this sick, both figuratively and—at the time of publication—literally. These pestilences, originating from a host of foreign and domestic streams, are of the body’s own creation. The US has failed to effectively address the heat created by ideological pundits, and is unable to fend off the bloodsucking mosquitos of zero-sum partisanship.

These attacks on the body are only symptoms of corrupted institutions. The US has failed to deal with the heat source that turned on the temperature, and the still waters which gave birth to the mosquitos. A gridlocked duopoly, unsustainable income inequality, unaddressed cultural conflict, perverse m