Zakaria Quote Of The Day

the American system … proved to be flexible, resourceful, and resilient, able to correct mistakes and shift its attention. A focus on American economic decline prevented it. The problem today is that the American political system seems to have lost its ability to create broad coalitions that solve complex issues.

This struck me as eerily similar to Thomas Friedman’s quote of Goldman’s Robert Hormats in his excellent op-ed in today’s NY TImes:

We used to try harder and do better. After Sputnik, we came together
as a nation and responded with a technology, infrastructure and
education surge, notes Robert Hormats, vice chairman of Goldman Sachs
International. After the 1973 oil crisis, we came together and made
dramatic improvements in energy efficiency. After Social Security
became imperiled in the early 1980s, we came together and fixed it for
that moment. “But today,” added Hormats, “the political system seems
incapable of producing a critical mass to support any kind of serious
long-term reform.”

The optimist in me sees the emergence of consensus on at least one issue – our political system is messed up and needs a sharp kick in the butt.