What is the biggest challenge facing the democrats?

Matt Bai: Well I think the greatest challenge facing both parties is change – it’s fundamental change. Look you can live in a lot of moments in American history where the world you’re born into and the world you govern are not that vastly different. They’re always different. Thirty or 40 years pass, you know things are gonna change in a country. But . . . but that said, you know you can . . . if you were . . . If you were born at a certain point in the 20th century after . . . after the Great Depression and you were governing in the 1960s or 1970s, you know the world was . . . The economy was pretty much the economy it was supposed to be. It was run by an industrial engine. The world was still divvied up among states who did menace to each other only. Or you know signed treaties and didn’t menace each other. I mean the world was pretty much the one . . . You had telephones, and you had televisions. You had nicer televisions and you had cable TV; but people were still communicating with one another in much the same way. And they were still posting letters by hand and sending them in a mailbox, you know. And then you have a moment like this where . . . where the world is just vastly different than it was 30, 40 years ago. And in a sense we’re caught between moments, right? We’re caught between what was an industrial age and what comes next, because we still have vestiges – one foot in the past . . . one foot in the past . . . one foot there and one foot in the future. So the challenge for the Democratic party or any party is to lead the way into that future; it’s to articulate what . . . what government . . . what . . . and the economic engine, and foreign policy of a country are gonna look like in the era when none of those things are operable anymore; when the economy is not industrial driven; where people communicate with each other all over the world in a flash, right? Where people expect to have options and choices in their lives. Where the threats that affect the world are not necessarily states to states, but a bunch of people who can communicate on the Internet and do a great deal more damage than a general in some country can. You know this is a whole new landscape. And I’m coming around to the view that it’s too much to ask. It’s just too much to ask of a generation born into a different world to govern in this one. I think the baby boom generation has done what it can. I don’t . . . I don’t indict them as selfish, worthless people. I just think it’s too . . . It may have been just too much to ask a generation born in the 1950s to figure out how to govern in the year 2007 or 2008. And I’m not . . . I’m coming around to the view that leadership . . . real leadership, and real change, and real evolution of government will . . . will have to wait for another generation.

Recorded on: 12/13/07

 

Fundamental changes will challenge both parties.

Scientists claim the Bible is written in code that predicts future events

The controversy around the Torah codes gets a new life.

Michael Drosnin
Surprising Science
  • Mathematicians claim to see a predictive pattern in the ancient Torah texts.
  • The code is revealed by a method found with special computer software.
  • Some events described by reading the code took place after the code was written.
Keep reading Show less

5 of the worst inventions in modern history

Be glad your name isn't attached to any of these bad ideas.

Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images
Technology & Innovation
  • Some inventions can be celebrated during their time, but are proven to be devastating in the long run.
  • The inventions doesn't have to be physical. Complex mathematical creations that create money for Wall Street can do as much damage, in theory, as a gas that destroys the ozone layer.
  • Inventors can even see their creations be used for purposes far different than they had intended.
Keep reading Show less

Orangutans exhibit awareness of the past

Orangutans join humans and bees in a very exclusive club

(Eugene Sim/Shutterstock)
Surprising Science
  • Orangutan mothers wait to sound a danger alarm to avoid tipping off predators to their location
  • It took a couple of researchers crawling around the Sumatran jungle to discover the phenomenon
  • This ability may come from a common ancestor
Keep reading Show less