The conditions that have resulted in 200-odd years of relative peace and prosperity for the American people are not normal. The normal state of mankind of a lot more like Mubarak’s Egypt than Reagan’s America, or Obama’s. Institutions matter, and one of the institutions that matters is sober, responsible government. Drawing a line forward from 2011 into the future, which does the American government more closely resemble? The one that helped make this nation great by allowing liberty to thrive, or one of the ones that used to be a punchline until such jokes stopped being very funny?