Compromise & Politics

In his first inaugural, Abraham Lincoln talked about the preservation of the union…

I am loath to close. We are not enemies, but friends. We must not be enemies. Though passion may have strained it must not break our bonds of affection. The mystic chords of memory, stretching from every battlefield and patriot grave to every living heart and hearthstone all over this broad land, will yet swell the chorus of the Union, when again touched, as surely they will be, by the better angels of our nature.

Success in politics isn’t about getting everything you want. It’s about being able to work with those different than us to ensure our joint success.  It’s about appealing to “the better angels of our nature.”

NY Times columnist Thomas Friedman has a great column about the communities that are coming together, setting aside their differences, for their joint success.

Our country is actually a checkerboard of cities and communities — some that are forming what I call “complex adaptive coalitions” and are thriving from the bottom up, and others that can’t build such adaptive coalitions and are rapidly deteriorating. You can find both on the coasts and both in the interior — and you can find both in just one little corner of south-central Pennsylvania.

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