In Search of a New Balance

Niskanen Center

Aurelian Craiutu, Constantine Vassiliou
Publication Date
February 3, 2021
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Hyperpolarization in American politics is not without precedent, but the toxic level of the current social-media-fueled partisanship is a relatively novel phenomenon that poses a great threat to our democracy. The crisis we are facing today goes far beyond the political sphere; it is also economic, social, cultural, and demographic. We seem to live in parallel universes and can hardly agree on the same set of facts. Addressing all these challenges will require complex policies, significant resources, and innovative strategies.
Building upon the work of scholars affiliated with the Niskanen Center, Aurelian Craiutu and Constantine Vassiliou reflect on what might be done to recalibrate our politics using the principles of moderation, which have kept America on an even keel during previous crisis points in its history. This task, they argue, requires a bold balancing act and a novel form of political eclecticism as an alternative to the present ideological style of politics. The moderation and eclecticism we discuss in this essay do not preclude, when necessary, bold responses proportionate to the daunting challenges we face today.