Anytime government becomes the source by which problems are solved it can be said with the greatest degree of certainty that the ultimate solution will not be derived from an approach which encompasses logic and reason; but from one whose basis is wholly political. Government action always entails the use of force. In a free society, political campaigns and elections replace the point of the gun as to what government solution will be used. However as in the case of the gun, the goal of political fights is and always will be “winner takes all”. Politics is all about winning.
With stakes so high, the political process is less about the discovery of truth and fact through intellectually honest debate; but is instead bound by the individual’s desire to win which leads to a Machiavellian path of discourse and actions. Politics is inherently dirty because there can be no true compromise between opposing forces at the ballot box. Honest discovery would be the instant demise of one of these forces. Therefore, political survival by at least one faction, if not both, is dependent upon the ability to blur the truth and to mire in deceit. The history of this country’s political campaigns, even among its most honored and righteous individuals, is filled with volumes of lies, smears, slander, and violence. A “clean political” campaign can be regarded as the quintessential oxymoron. The true nature of politics holds true whether you are characterizing a national campaign for President or the election of local school board candidates.
Armed with content which is less than truthful, the political animal is on the constant prowl for more and more power. Power is the only means of survival for the political animal. What was witnessed yesterday is, in context, just merely a pause in the debate. I would dare say the majority of victories by the Democrats were simply because of anti sentiments towards the Iraq war, not minimum wage, taxes, nor the economy. This savage political animal was fueled by the left leaning press and was a lot to overcome.
What to do now. The first step is to take a short break, and rethink matters. Take stock of the positive aspects or underlying trends that may be found in the election results. Is your cause or the candidate(s) you voted for showing potential for future elections? Was the message acceptable, but not the messenger? Was the candidate wrongfully characterized? Can this be rectified.. Or, was the message flawed, and the messenger inextricably tied to it? How bad (or good) are the implications to you for the passage of a particular referendum? Basically, what worked in the campaign, and what did not. Accessing these aspects is important because you then can get re-energized and begin thinking about how to help candidates that represent your views in future elections. Point being here is that you have to take a little time and review matters in a rational and clear headed way.
Second option would be an outgrowth of point one above. This option is the “all is lost, screw it” option - without any action. What you do here is to basically give up and concede that those opposed to your views are too many in number and that unless something dramatic happens your positions will never prevail. There could be a host of reasons, but the fact is your ideas are not resonating with enough people. Consequently, you throw up the white flag and depart from the debate going about your daily life by ignoring such political matters entirely.
Third option is to vote with your feet. You see the writing on the wall and you no longer wish to live in an area of the country whereby the prevailing attitudes and political perspectives are so skewed towards a vision that you simply cannot live with that you pull up stakes and sell the farm. We have this choice, and it is the red states getting redder scenario. You search out a part of the country where your views are prevalent, and move.
The fourth option is the “help let Rome burn” option. What happens here is that you see clearly that the prevailing views will result in some disastrous effects. Voter participation is such that the vast majority do not take certain elections seriously enough to vote (generally local elections), but the impact of those elections have tremendous potential to cause serious problems - such as dramatic increases in taxation. So, you throw up your arms and say, “OK, let’s actually aid and abett the other side’s agenda.” We know what the outcome will be, so let’s jump start the process - in other words, in the case of a school district, you would actively support and promote the passage of any referendums, the state would be to support minimum wage, and the federal level, universal health care, etc., etc. The idea here is to push the agenda of the other side, with the obvious result of substantially higher taxes on those very people who did not participate in the elections that cause the rise in taxation. In short, you help light the fuse that will cause Rome to burn. One caveat, make sure you sell your house with plenty of lead time!
The last (fifth) option would be the “if you can’t beat em, join em” approach. .Errrgh! Or, the “I guess I am going to give up my core beliefs and moral perspective and fundamentally change my world view.” Under this option, you become one of them…. We have choices and options; the question remains as to what direction, or which options, will those for whom the election did not come out their way go?
All of members of OnTheBorderLine