OPINION – Nothing invites a more certain outburst of mindless anger than to invite people to see something they don’t want to see.
It’s human nature to actively resist those things which push against our mental boundaries.
Case in point, how would the most vocal supporters of Cruz, Trump, Clinton, Rubio or Sanders react if one were to suggest that none of these candidates will save our nation?
What would they say if they were informed that the ritual of voting will not affect the unelected bureaucracies that seek to rule the tiniest details of our lives?
Few of the masses currently caught up in the campaign fervor would be willing to entertain the notion that each of these candidates are simply telling their followers precisely what they want to hear.
Fewer still dare to entertain the notion that the solutions to the greatest problems confronting America today are found in we the people and not in our politicians.
All the campaign promises and patriotic fluff that excite the crowds at various political rallies are a smokescreen to prevent the public from recognizing how the system abuses them.
John Whitehead of the Rutherford Institute nails it when he writes:
Politics today is about one thing and one thing only: maintaining the status quo between the Controllers (the politicians, the bureaucrats, and the corporate elite) and the Controlled (the taxpayers).
individuals who are pleading to be chosen as their party’s presidential nominee are using a lot of buzzwords that resonate with their intended audiences. Why don’t they talk about the issues that are transforming what used to be the freest nation on earth into a police state?
For instance, how many candidates would dare mention the scientific study by Princeton researchers showing how elite corporate and monied special interests have far greater effect on public policy than the voters do?
Why don’t they mention the fact that despite violent crime being at its lowest rate in the past four decades, the number of Americans being imprisoned for nonviolent crimes has gone through the roof?
Why don’t these candidates discuss the enormous amounts of money being spent around the clock to fund military occupations or to arm other nations at the expense of the U.S. taxpayer?
Where is the courage to question extrajudicial drone strikes like the one that killed 150 people in Somalia last week? Or do they assume, as we’re supposed to, that anyone killed by our government must have deserved it?
Do they have concerns about the 30,000 government drones that are expected to be operation in U.S. airspace by 2020 and how they’ll be used? Might that affect the privacy and safety of the citizenry, or is our government’s security always the highest priority?
This is only a partial list of issues that are not being addressed by any of the candidates seeking the presidency.
The fact that these topics are not within the realm of allowable opinion should be a strong indicator to the rest of us that no matter who is inaugurated in 2017, the bureaucracy will remain unchanged.
None of these observations should be construed as an excuse to simply give up. They are simply the recognition that, of all the things we could be doing to improve the world around us, the promises of politicians amount to very little.
The mindless sloganeering of this election year has little appeal to those who recognize the incorrigibility of our political system. It’s tempting to withdraw from civic engagement and let the partisans tear each other to pieces.
However, for those who believe that there are absolute principles upon which freedom and happiness are predicated, there is a lot of work to do.
Voting alone cannot induce change. This is true even when we carefully cast our votes only for good, wise and honest candidates.
Outside of voting, there are at least four areas in which we can exert undeniable influence for good.
The first is found in how we develop our personal character. Truly good people tend to become a source of illumination for those around them through quiet service to others.
Next, we can emancipate ourselves from the chains of ignorance through thoughtful and regular study. The brilliance of the founding generation was obtained in this way.
Third, we can become more involved in civic affairs through regular communication with elected leaders at every level. Obviously this is most productive at the municipal or county level.
Attending public meetings on a regular basis gives us a real edge in understanding what is going on around us.
There is also real power in your elected officials knowing you by name and by your principles. Persistence is essential.
Finally, we can make our influence felt by sharing our counsel on the issues affecting us. This can be done by vote or by letter, by speaking, teaching and informing those around us.
When you find that you are being regularly sought out for your advice, that’s a good sign you’re doing it right.
Given the opportunity to move beyond the reactionary election year hype and into making a tangible difference in the lives of those around us, why wouldn’t we choose the better way?
Bryan Hyde is a news commentator, radio host and opinion columnist in Southern Utah. The opinions stated in this article are his and not representative of St. George News.
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