Victor Davis Hanson discusses the Boxer-Rice exchange as symbolic of a new reality:
Reflect for a moment. The first African-American woman to be nominated as Secretary-of -State was called a veritable liar on global television by Senator Boxer, with the sort of withering invective that was never unleashed against Madeline Albright, Warren Christopher, or any recent previous nominee for Secretary-of-State of the past century—or Boxer’s own colleagues who drafted and passed the resolution for war. Yet while Rice was calm for hours and relied on her ample memory, Boxer was abrasive in her few minutes of prepared attack and misled despite her voluminous notes.
This is all haywire. According to the 1950s Democratic mythology that we all grew up with, the stereotypical aggressor in such an unfair exchange should have been a senior Southern reactionary male, replete with drawl and barely contained racist anger, who ambushes the upstart and distorts the record in an act of name-calling—before hitting the airwaves to besmirch her further and, finally, to cut and paste the exchange into crass political ads to raise money for his own entrenched sinecure.
What in the world has happened to us?
VDH then answers his own question:
The former idealists and reformers have become backward-looking. Like most reactionaries whose comfortable world is vanishing, they are frustrated, looking for scapegoats—and acting very, very bizarrely.
Read the entire article. Of course I like it because it says what I've been saying all along: Something strange is happening here. The so-called "progressives" are now the reactionaries, looking backward and yearning for the good old days of the past; and the "conservatives" are forward-thinking and advancing to meet the challenges of the new century.
When did this remarkable role-reversal come into being? Well, I propose that it began with the intense disappointment felt by Democrats after the 2000 election did not go their way. But focal point of the change occurred on September 11, 2001; and after that the slope of the change increased dramatically.
When you speak to a Democrat or someone from the Left, just notice the barely (if at all) concealed rage and loathing. Notice the overidealization of Clinton and how "wonderful" it was back then when we were significantly less aware of the international terrorist threat. Notice the harping about Vietnam and the constant use of analogies and memes from that era. And then notice that the things they once fought for (minority/women's rights, freedom, equality) are nothing to them now.
Psychologically it is well-known that the true character of a person (and in this case a movement) may be easily hidden and covered up under most circumstances. But the character will shine through no matter how much a person might like to suppress it--when there is a crisis or an emergency. The response to 9/11 and its aftermath has shown that the true colors of many Democrats--especially the more Left-leaning ones.
And it ain't a pretty sight.