President Reagan is not remembered for the initial confusions as he first began to set the pace. In fact, the first year of the contrarian Reagan revolution was anything but seamless. Reagan is remembered for his effective policies — tax reform, deregulation, reinvigorating our military, bringing down the Berlin Wall — accomplishments which were not achieved in his first year and in fact, were the result of a lengthy processes requiring significant time in the saddle, and incredible perseverance in the face of opposition.
The bottom line is the debate, the dialogue, the concern, the bickering, the parrying and thrusting all contribute to the process of American democracy. The institutional press is doing its job in bringing to light all sides of the Rubik’s cube.
Journalism has dramatically changed over the last decade. Everyone has instantaneous access to data. Walter Cronkite’s “And that’s the way it is” no longer holds relevance to a viewer who can access information in an instant. The art of journalism is now about adding perspective and point of view to widely available facts that were once scarce and only disseminated to mainstream media. This, ultimately, is a good thing, and through adversity produces prolific dialogue and greater understanding of all points of view to a broader audience.
The results will always appear unsatisfactory to varying constituencies. What makes America work is the process that allows us all to express our dissatisfaction, not necessarily bask in the results of unquestioned splendor.