October 07, 2003

The New Jackson

Andrew Sullivan observes that Arnold Schwarzenegger is deeply threatening to a lot of people on both the left and the right because he is culturally different, a new phenomenon. This isn't something new in American politics. Every once in awhile a new cultural wave rolls onto the political scene and the forces of the establishment have always been scandalized. The first figure to represent this kind of turnover was Andrew Jackson. After his inauguration (which his predecessor refused to attend), he invited the 20,000 odd spectators to the White House. The resultant party was so wild, President Jackson had to crawl out of the White House to escape. The disaster did have one lasting effect, the creation of an 'inaugural parade'.

So will Arnold shake up Sacramento the way Jackson shook up the Capitol? We'll all see but nobody should have any illusions that this kind of shift is anything new.

Posted by TMLutas at October 7, 2003 02:40 PM