Reaching the Limits of Passionate Defense: Time to Turn Back

Ben Brown confronts the politics of NO and finds -- spoiler alert(!) -- "to score, you need to shoot, and to shoot, you need the puck." Welcome to the waning days of Passionate D.

1 minute read

December 22, 2013, 5:00 AM PST

By Hazel Borys


"When House Speaker John Boehner, indulging his inner Howard Beale, launched a Republican counterattack against the party’s far right wing, it seemed to me the GOP was finally rubbing up against the same rough edges of reality that have become apparent in big-time sports. And the lessons apply as much to civic life in towns and regions as to Washington politics.

"Here’s what the life lab of sports tells us: Stressing defensive disruption over offensive accountability is a losing proposition."

Ben Brown goes on with an interesting analysis of sports offensive and defensive strategies, and ties it back to planning and urban design. Quantifiable results should be planners' primary goal, he argues, even if those results at times require "embracing the suck."

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