David Brooks is a conservative op-ed columnist for The New York Times. Tuesday night he was also the featured speaker at the Baltimore Speaker Series. David described that being a conservative political writer at the generally more liberal newspaper was sort of “like being a rabbi in Mecca.”
It probably isn’t accurate to label David Brooks as an ideologue conservative. His politics tend more towards the center right. For instance, he said he thought that President Obama was “the most reasonable person in Washington right now.”
At the same time he criticized the president for trying to do too much too soon, and for spending too much money. He said Obama is addicted to hitting home runs when he might be better off trying for a few singles and doubles. He said the president is “very perceptive, intelligent and calm”
David feels that the problem with Congress is bourbon. It wasn’t that long ago, he explained, that members of both parties would meet for drinks after work and get to know each other as individuals. That doesn’t happen much anymore. He said they barely know each other now and that the emotional anger and bitterness is at the highest level he’s ever seen. He believes our governing culture has changed a bit for the worse on the past ten years.
After listening to his talk I also became convinced that the current health care reform bill that Obama is trying to ram through Congress is a bad bill that will do little if anything to reign in escalating health care costs.
I’m disappointed in both parties for their inability to deliver comprehensive health care reform. As far as I’m concerned both parties have failed the American people.
Maybe it’s time for them to try and meet for drinks again.