On education, Obama showed a path out of gridlock that could work as well in solving other entrenched problems. "For decades, Washington has been trapped in the same stale debates that have paralyzed progress and perpetuated our educational decline," he said Tuesday. "Too many supporters of my party have resisted the idea of rewarding excellence in teaching with extra pay, even though it can make a difference in the classroom. Too many in the Republican Party have opposed new investments in early education, despite compelling evidence of its importance."
The tectonic plates on which the 20th century was built are shifting in the 21st. In the 1930s, New Dealers like FDR had to save capitalism from itself. In the 1990s, New Democrats like Bill Clinton had to modernize progressive government. Over the next few years, Barack Obama has to do both at the same time. For that, as Obama made clear again yesterday, a new president with a new approach is exactly what we need.
TODAY IN SLATE
The Irritating Confidante
John Dickerson on Ben Bradlee’s fascinating relationship with John F. Kennedy.
My Father Invented Social Networking at a Girls’ Reform School in the 1930s
Renée Zellweger’s New Face Is Too Real
Sleater-Kinney Was Once America’s Best Rock Band
Can it be again?
The All The President’s Men Scene That Captured Ben Bradlee
Is It Better to Be a Hero Like Batman?
Or an altruist like Bruce Wayne?
Driving in Circles
The autonomous Google car may never actually happen.