My take on race, Reid, and the politics of meaning is up now at the Guardian. Snip:
In a panic over the chance to unseat Senator Reid, the GOP is in danger of making permanent our misbegotten descent into the crackpot belief that racial symbolism is more real than our actual race relations. Inherited from deconstructionist academics whose postmodern school of thought had already become fatuous in the 1990s, the idea that inequalities of power institutionalised into our language were the key to social change has metastasized into our whole society. It is a sad, but not surprising, turn: when real change seems to become impossible, we strain to lose ourselves in the therapeutic shadowplay of change theatre. Our obsession with “changing the tone” belies our lost hopes of ever changing the substance, either of Washington politics or of race relations.