When I first saw Matt Zeitlin getting upset that there’s a debate over Caroline Kennedy becoming a senator, I thought “don’t worry, this isn’t really a debate, per se.” Confirmation comes via Ross Douthat:
Let’s face it, all rich, well-connected, powerful people kinda think they’re entitled to whatever they want. Michael Bloomberg wanted to be Mayor of New York. Jon Corzine wanted to be a Senator–then governor. Perennial failure George W. Bush wanted to be governor, then President. Arnold and Jesse wanted to be governors. Life is just more fun and opportunity-filled when you’re rich and famous. Deal with it. (–Michelle Cottle)
If you look carefully, this isn’t an argument. There’s not a word to the effect that Caroline Kennedy would be a good senator. All she’s saying is that people should calm down about Kennedy. And they should! But in a debate, I think you’re supposed to claim your ideas are good, not just that people shouldn’t be outraged.
If this isn’t a debate, we should just resign ourselves to the fact that the way things work is that someone proposes the idea, everyone self-respecting complains, and then the people in charge do what they were going to anyway. Then all of us who complained go out for a beer and wade further into cynicism.