DC's Moods: Excitement, Audacity, Anxiety

Brooks sees three themes in the capital
By Gabriel Winant,  Newser User
Posted Dec 12, 2008 8:43 AM CST
Solar-powered homes built and designed by colleges and universities at the "Powered by the Sun 2007 Solar Decathlon" on the National Mall in Washington, Saturday, Oct. 13, 2007.   (AP Photo/Lawrence Jackson)
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(Newser) – David Brooks "has been working tirelessly to understand the spirit of the American capital," and he lays out three main themes in the New York Times:

  • This isn't so much a transition as a "season of rebirth.” The impending inauguration feels like an "ancient tribal rite—the purging of sin, the elevation of the pure, the moral regeneration of the nation’s soul." Maybe they’ll sacrifice a goat.

  • “Second, there is a feeling of audacity sweeping the ruling circles.” America’s powerful treat $300 billion as they once did $3 billion. Health care and energy reform, once giant obstacles, are now mere "subplots" folded in to the economic stimulus.
  • “And this leads, sad to say, to the third layer of emotion: anxiety.” No really knows if the premises of such dramatic action are sound, and perhaps “some unholiness is being unwittingly and rashly created.”