The Spectacle Blog

Civility, People!

By on 2.21.11 | 12:53PM

This reads like something out of the Onion.

Former presidents Bill Clinton and George H.W. Bush, who have joined forces in the past to head disaster relief efforts, are uniting again as honorary chairmen of a new National Institute for Civil Discourse....

Besides the two former presidents, other honorary chairmen of the institute are former senator and Democratic majority leader Tom Daschle and former Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor. Board members include former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, former Rep. Jim Kolbe of Arizona; Ronald Reagan adviser Ken Duberstein; Fox News host Greta Van Susteren; and Trey Grayson, head of the Institute of Politics at Harvard University.

If you look at what these people have in common, it isn't civility as much as a commitment to a political spectrum that stretches all the way from mushy centrism to liberalism. That kind of political discourse, more than genuine civility, is what the Giffords shooting is being exploited to promote.

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