But it is not necessary.
Let's review the last four crises of America's political history.
- The 1860 crisis was based on a single idea, slavery. The political Thesis which emerged was not that of Lincoln, but those of Gilded Age multi-millionaires on Wall Street. And this thesis did not become apparent until long after the war.
- The 1896 crisis rejected the animating idea of the day, Populism. The actual Thesis which emerged, the Progressive movement, came into power by accident, the 1901 assassination of McKinley and Theodore Roosevelt's ascension to power.
- The 1932 crisis was caused by the Great Depression. The New Deal Thesis was not, at first, a promise of action, but of the appearance of action. Deficits remained low until World War II made them necessary. That's when Keynsianism was seen to work.
- The 1968 crisis did not bring the conservative movement to power, except rhetorically. In fact, the Nixon years represented a height for liberal government. New agencies were created, liberal precedents were set. The Thesis did not really obtain power until 1980.
See a pattern?
Despite apparent early failure, each new Thesis did in time come to power. So it will likely be this time.
Open source is an approach to governance that is based, like the original New Deal, on an attitude. It's not a set of policies, but a method for finding policies and bringing them forward.
As with the Internet, it's based on some simple ideas that work:
- Open communication
- Transparent consensus
- International cooperation
This is where the rest of the world is moving. With a politics of open source, we're just starting to catch up.