That's the quote from "Atlas Shrugged" that Ted Cruz read on the Senate floor during his (it's not a) filibuster. We talked about it here, and it sprang to mind this morning as I was reading Rich Lowry's column "Stubborn democrats escaping all the blame in shutdown":
Refusing to negotiate is the new reasonableness.Appreciation for standing on principle depends on whether your principle is appreciated. It's right there in the Ayn Rand quote: There is food and poison, good and evil. We've got to believe you're the food, the good, before we admire your refusal to compromise.
After years of agonized media commentary about the failure of key players in Washington to sit down and work out their differences, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid plans to win the fight over the government shutdown by rejecting all compromise, calling his opponents names and escaping blame in the press.
Eric Cantor, do not try this at home. It is a gambit available only to Democrats, who are presumed, almost by definition, to be free of any responsibility for a shutdown....
The media aren't going to see the Republicans as serving the food and the Democrats as serving the poison, so in the media, the refusal to compromise is always going to be bad for Republicans and good for Democrats. As usual, the conservatives have to fight against the media, and of course, Lowry knows that.
It's possible to use media opposition in a positive way, some jujitsu move. It needs to be something better than the usual whining that the media is against you. But what?