06/21/2009 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

Watch Out -- It's Going Around

I have been a Democrat all of my life. As a young man I remained faithful to my party despite the disgusting antics of Senators Bilbo, Rankin, Thurman and their like. These scurvy fools were larger than life -- perhaps they all seemed that way before television shrunk them -- but they stood out starkly from the general run of congressional Democrats like lipstick on a donkey, the symbol of our party. Their diseased minds didn't seem to have infected our Democrat body politic. And so I could remain a solid, often prideful Democrat.

I find myself struggling to feel that way today. I worry that my party could be coming down with a kind of political swine flu. It's new to our politicos and spin doctors but known to be lethal; resembles what we've experienced, yet we are totally unprepared for it. Its symptoms among congressional Democrats are a failing strength of conviction; a sudden shift in attitude; capricious and/or unpredictable voting patterns and feverish explanations for same.

I am not identifying the congressional pol swine flu carriers as I see them so as to concentrate on the disease. Pick the carriers as you see them before this illness becomes systemic in our progressive body politic.

The only known antidote is WE, the people who continue to call ourselves Democrats.