Frank said liberals must address Middle America if they ever want to win it back. That's where What's the Matter With Kansas? ends, leaving its readers to answer the question: What can we do about Kansas? Or, more precisely, what can we do about Rush Limbaugh's Middle America—that ocean of pop-con devotees stretching from sea to shining sea, echoing the language of the great backlash in San Bernardino, California; Council Bluffs, Iowa; Lynchburg, Virginia; Missoula, Montana; and everywhere in between?
Do we play them for suckers like the pop-cons did?
Do we promise them tax breaks and give them wars?
Do we look them in the eyes and tell them they're being had?
Do we abolish gay marriage and embrace SUVs?
Do we hire a new public-relations firm?
Do we stop drinking lattes and start hating controversial art?
Do we start a revolution?
Do we hire more focus groups?
Do we search for the liberal Limbaugh?
Or do we stay the course, keep the faith and pray that the winds of change are soon upon us?
What's the matter with Kansas? How conservatives won the Heart of America By Thomas Frank; Henry Holt & Co. Hardcover, 306 Pages, $24.