WaPo: Fewer dinners mean meaner politics

…the problem of which, of course, is that the machines the politicians (and the media — Washington Post included) have spun up around themselves make this sort of “civility” an impossible task:

Today, however, political purists from both sides openly sneer at the idea of going to a dinner party. Who wants to risk hearing a viewpoint different from his own or be forced to defend her beliefs without the benefit of talking points? Politicians say they’re too busy to socialize, citing the demands of travel to their districts, the increasing unpredictability of the congressional calendar and the absence of their spouses. The last is a particular blow: That fewer government spouses live in Washington means another source of political friend-making is lost, and it’s a loss as well for the city charities that traditionally relied on congressional spouses for fundraising leadership (in return for providing venues for gracious bipartisan mingling).

Thus cries for such civil conversation tend to fall of deaf ears, especially when this sort of eavesdropping tends to be the result from an overeager reporter or blogger bottomfeeding for news.

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