Highlights of @TomFreidman’s “Who Are We?” Op-Ed from NYT

As usually happens when I read Tom Freidman’s Op-Ed pieces in the New York Time, I found myself thinking that I want him for President.  His “Who Are We?” piece is a masterpiece, though I note he did not speak poorly of all candidates.  I have highlighted some of my favorite parts of his piece below.  To read the entire piece, click here.

TF: If I were given a blank sheet of paper and told to write down America’s three greatest sources of strength, they would be “a culture of entrepreneurship,” “an ethic of pluralism” and the “quality of our governing institutions.”   Me: Very few nations on Earth have all three of these qualities.  And the few that do generally have much more socialistic societies.

TF: Trump’s famous hat says “Make America great again.” You can’t do that if your message to Hispanics and Muslims is: Get out or stay away. We have an immigration problem.  Me: America was founded on shared ideas and ideals.  Race and religion are not supposed to be reasons for judging “Americans”.  I do wish that there was more focus on assimilation to existing cultural norms by recent immigrants, and less building of sub-cultures.  But banning immigration will not make America great.

TF: I’d take Sanders more seriously if he would stop bleating about breaking up the big banks and instead breathed life into what really matters for jobs: nurturing more entrepreneurs and starter-uppers. I never hear Sanders talk about where employees come from. They come from employers — risk-takers, people ready to take a second mortgage to start a business. If you want more employees, you need more employers, not just government stimulus.  Me: Yep

TF: Unlike Sanders, Ted Cruz does not have a good soul. He brims with hate, and his trashing of Washington, D.C., is despicable. I can’t defend every government regulation. But I know this: As the world gets faster and more interdependent, the quality of your governing institutions will matter more than ever, and ours are still pretty good. I wonder how much the average Russian would pay to have our F.B.I. or Justice Department for a day, or how much a Chinese city dweller would pay for a day of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission or Environmental Protection Agency? Cruz wraps himself in an American flag and spits on all the institutions that it represents.  Me: Cruz seems like a truly unhappy person who views the world as filled with Evil.  I believe the world has some Evil, but that Good dominates.

TF: “E Pluribus Unum” — Out of Many, One.  Our forefathers so cherished that motto they didn’t put it on a hat. They put it on coins and then on the dollar bill.  Me: Out of Many, One.  Maybe the best tagline ever.


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