Newt Gingrich's 21st-century contract with America begins with this:
"The dogmas of the quiet past are inadequate to the stormy present. The occasion is piled high with difficulty, and we must rise with the occasion. As our case is now, so we must think anew, and act anew. We must disenthrall ourselves, and then we shall save our country." (Abraham Lincoln, 1862 message to Congress)
I have read the entire message, and I would add this sentence, from Lincoln's 1863 Gettysburg Address to emphasize the period Gingrich evoked:
"Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure."
Gingrich's comparing our current situation with that of the most precarious period in American history, the Civil War, is unjustified.
Therefore, his solutions are unwarranted.
There are many present-day problems, but none that cannot be overcome with patience and perseverance. I'm optimistic about our problem-solving Americans.
Hilton Head Island