Commentary – A meeting in Old Town


It is no secret that for many of us in Old Town national politics is much more than a pastime involving cheering for (or yelling at) Bill OReilly on Fox, and/or yelling at (or cheering for) Keith Olbermann on MSNBC.

If you need to find someone involved in national politics in Old Town Republican or Democrat all you need to do is sit in Landinis for a couple of nights and the chances are pretty good the person you are looking for will stroll in.

This happens in some of the well-known power spots in The District, of course.  The difference is no one actually plants themselves at Landinis as they do at Oceannaire or Mortons or The Palm.

I am a paid consultant to the campaign of Sen. Fred Thompson.  The other night my wife and I went to Ls for dinner.  Already there were political media maven Alex Castellanos and his wife.  I went over.  He stood up and we greeted each other with a hug. 

Whats odd about that?  Alex is a senior consultant to the campaign of Mitt Romney.  It did not happen on the night in question, but it would not have seemed odd to anyone had James Carville and Mary Matalin walked in and chatted with us about what is going on in this very confused election cycle.

That meeting in a place like Old Town gives you an insight into the way political professionals deal with politics:  Professionally.

We dont try to convince each other than one candidate is better than the other, or one party is correct and the other is wrong; nor to we draw lines in the sand on policy issues.

When political pros get together it is more like professional football players getting together off the field.  We talk about games (elections) we have played (run) against each other in technical terms, not because we believe that, for instance, the Redskins are always the good guys and the Cowboys are inherently bad.

Not the fans, though.  Football fans and political fans are alike in this regard:  The game is always on and opponents are always enemies.

Thus, does talk radio thrive.