Thinking about Tomorrow Worriedly:
The Election of 1992
And all the unsettled humours of the land . . . Have sold their fortunes at their native homes, Bearing their birthrights proudly on their backs, To make a hazard of new fortunes here.
-- The Life and Death of King John ( II, i)
Half a millennium ago, Columbus, unwitting, landed in a new world, and Americans in 1992 suspected that, like him, they had arrived at some unexpected place, full of unfamiliar shadows.* In the election, most Americans allowed themselves to be drawn by hope, but they went wistfully, driven by worries and without much confidence, convinced that they had more to fear than fear itself.
Change was in the air: for the first time in more than half a century, a presidential election was not framed by war, present or rumored; voters were restless; new concerns and constituencies made themselves felt; and the victorious Democrats pro____________________