Monday, October 11, 2010

Jerry Brown's Empty Blackboard

The Tea Party notwithstanding, Jerry Brown may be the year's true revolutionary. His moderate Republican opponent, Meg Whitman, is spending a large fortune on elaborate plans and advance men with ear plugs without offering any real hope of being able to do anything to fix California's broken government that wasn't available to the moderate Republican incumbent. According to this Joe Hagan account in "New York" magazine, Brown improvises, stumbles, and promises almost nothing. No more likely to fix the state, probably, but his no-plan plan is somehow refreshing:
Brown’s campaign strategy appears to be, let Whitman spend all her money while Brown leans back and declares her a spendthrift and a dilettante.

Kevin Starr, the USC historian, who went to high school with Brown, calls Brown’s non-efforts a “Zen campaign,” which seems to acknowledge that politics itself, the function and purpose of it, has “been erased in California.” Or, put another way, why have a plan if plans aren’t going to work?

“It’s an empty blackboard,” Starr says.

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