Being political is cool, as long as it’s progressive. Conservatives by nature hate politics and politicians. Liberals love it, because it makes them feel cool. Talk to any liberal friend, and they’re running for office when they’re running their mouth. “I must tell you about the bake sale we had for the Guatemalan water snake.” No you don’t, but you will. Shut up.

Immigration as an idea is cool neutral. But discussing the definition of a border? Uncool, dude. Sure, other countries have them (the ones people are fleeing from); but discussing the possibility of an American border is smeared as racist in origin — the ultimate in uncool. I’m probably racist for writing that.

Who pushes the cool? The media, of course, who seeks to portray anything traditional as silly, dorky, and outmoded. The stuff that worked, apparently, is stupid, because it worked. Witness how the media mocked a gentle mess like the Tea Party but embraced the soiled rag of Occupy Wall Street. To the network and newspaper hacks, one was simply way cooler than the other. One reminded them of their parents, the other reminded them of themselves. Without a bath.

Why is this duopoly, the cool vs. the uncool, so important? It won an election. Showbiz beat substance. Style creamed success. This happens in a culture that salivates over youth, glamour, and glibness. Fashion has no use for Mitts.