Nancy Pelosi, Pragmatist

by Jonah Goldberg

A major premise of my book, The Tyranny of Clichés, was that liberals pretend that “ideology” is really only something conservatives are burdened with. Sometimes they will concede that crazy Marxists are ideological too. But what is almost invariably the case is that whatever liberals believe today isn’t ideological, it’s just good sense, or pragmatism, optimal policymaking or the right thing to do. 

Now it may simply be because the paperback of Tyranny is coming out at the end of the month that my antennae are once again twitching for examples of my thesis (hint, hint). But I still think this is a pretty good illustration of my point. Obama was in San Francisco yesterday for a fundraiser, according to CNN:

 Rep. Nancy Pelosi is a “visionary” leader who “never lets ideology cloud her judgment,” President Barack Obama told a crowd of donors in San Francisco Wednesday evening.

Ah yes, Nancy Pelosi always keeps ideology out of her careful deliberations of the pros and cons of public policy. What I particularly like is the contrast between being “visionary” and not being ideological. What on earth is the difference? Can you have a meaningful vision for the country, never mind Pelosi’s vision, without having an ideology?

(Hat tip to the blog “Two Heads are Better than One” which has more to say). 

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