Tuesday, November 22, 2011

How Washington Works

Facts and Comments:

  1. Political parties have a social impact: most politicians fraternize mainly with colleagues from within their own party.
  2. Very few politicians go home to retire or make money. Most stay in Washington and become lawyers, lobbyists, or consultants. 
  3. The city and its suburbs are encircled by a 64-mile freeway loop known as the beltway. The political community of Washington talks as if that beltway formed a most separating the capital from the country.
  4. Each city has variety, while Washington in spite of its growing world of art, theaters, opera, and symphony has only one passion: politics.
  5. Very few politicians admit in print how much they really want public recognition.
  6. Washington gives politicians a feeling of being at the center of things, therefore making them feel powerful.
  7. Practically everyone in political Washington has come from somewhere else.
  8. "Potomac fever" = the incurable addiction of wielding political power of feeling at the political center.
  9. Washington is very open to newcomers.
  10. Political Washington is a special community with a culture all its own, its own established rituals and folkways, its tokens of status and influence, its rules and conventions, its tribal rivalries and personal animosities. 
  1. Because Washington isn't represented in Congress, do the people feel disconnected from the rest of the country or left out of decisions?
  2. Is Washington different than other cities or is it merely isolated?
  3. How many people living in Washington do not work in politics at all?
  4. Do politicians get along outside of work? Are they friends even if they are from different ends of the political spectrum? 
  5. Do citizens of Washington feel excluded from the country?
  6. Do families of politicians make sacrifices to live in Washington and to be a part of the limelight?
  7. What about Washington causes narcissism? 
  8. Does the author suggest that politicians join the government for the wrong reasons?
  9. Do political titles bring power or do they just suggest an idea of power?
  10. Do politicians come to Washington already with the narcissistic attitude, or does such a trait develop as one becomes an insider?

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