Looking Forward, Looking Back

Time was, all manner of people would get involved in politics. Politics was about the polis, about all citizens being able to relate to the state and the instruments of policy and government.

Sure, it was never really like that, quite, but it's a beautiful thought, and a wonderful idea that our representatives be the best and the brightest among us, not lifetime schemers and climbers.

Which is why this story makes me smile, and gives me some hope:
A Russian citizen, Kasparov has emerged as an outspoken critic of President Vladimir Putin and is playing a leading role in the Committee 2008: Free Choice, a group formed by liberal opposition leaders.
"As a chess player, I did everything I could, even more. Now, I want to use my intellect and strategic thinking in Russian politics," Kasparov said Friday in a statement cited by the Interfax news agency."I will do everything in my power to resist Putin's dictatorship," he said. "My opinion is that the country is headed down the wrong path now."
I like that. I like that a lot. Putin can't just kill Kasparov, or destroy him, like some other liberal politician. He's already a larger-than-life personality, known for his specific kind of genius. And it's a kind of genius (chess-playing) that is more trenchant and respected in Russia than here.

Some hope.

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