Anyone who believes in democracy should be appalled by the use of the word politics in this New York Times headline:
“Congestion Pricing Plan for Manhattan Ran Into Politics. Politics Won.”
Who is this “politics” that is capable of fighting battles, and winning or losing them?
Elected officials make decisions. People who make decisions should take responsibility for those decisions. This is why being an elected official is much less fun than it looks.
When we say that “politics” made a decision, we’re implying that the actual deciders aren’t responsible. Some elected officials like it when we talk this way, because it helps them avoid responsibility for their choices. But that’s not how a healthy democracy works, and if we accept that “politics” is a political actor, we are surrendering an important part of our right to democracy.