By Mike Lofgren,
Washington Post, March 1, 2013
Politics in Washington has become far worse than the traditional partisan to-and-fro inherent in any democracy. It now presents a danger to orderly day-to-day governance of the country. Politics is no longer the art of the possible; it is bad theater. We are lurching perilously close to becoming Italy, where citizens appear to have given up on being self-governing citizens and instead have cynically chosen reality TV. Criminally implicated tycoons and comedians vie for the presidency; these candidates appeal to many Italians because they provide a diversion from a government in perpetual crisis.