Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Government working as designed

(My Clovis News Journal column for June 10, 2016)

I'm sure you've noticed, but this seems to be an exceptionally angry presidential election cycle. More than usual, those who hate the candidates are setting the tone, rather than those who support them. Just about everyone who cares passionately for one or the other seems to be behaving like a rabid animal.

People don't simply have a preference; they may like their candidate- or not- but they hate or fear the other candidates beyond all reason. Some then act on this hatred and fear.

Is this how elections are going to be from now on?

If you don't agree with the other candidate, use logic and reason to counter his (or her) claims. Or if that's too hard, use simplistic emotion to manipulate agreement. Whatever you do, don't use aggression. If you attack his supporters with fists, rocks, or eggs, you're admitting you can't come up with anything rational, so you are striking out like an impulsive child.

When the best advertisement for a candidate is those who oppose her (or him), perhaps it's time to look in a mirror. It's self-defeating behavior. It would be discouraging if I expected better of those who play politics.

Presidents are largely figureheads. If you look to them as role models, you are grasping at straws. No one who seeks political office-- the power to rule others-- should be your hero, ever. The particular person in office matters less than does the existence of the dangerous office.

I oppose all candidates and the offices they seek, on principle, so I don't have a horse in this race. If I did, seeing how voters act would put me off of elections for at least this year, and probably drive me away from them forever. Why would I want to be associated with a ritual which inspires such behavior?

But this is what you get when you allow someone power which was never meant for a person-- the power to tell others how they are permitted to live, and what they are required to do with their life and property. Only bad people will seek that kind of power, so only bad people will gain it.

Don't be surprised or disappointed at the outcome. The system is working just as it was designed to work; the only possible way it can work. In every election, only government wins. It's nothing to get angry about. It's something to recognize and refuse to be a part of. Are you brave enough?

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1 comment:

  1. ".....so you are striking out like an impulsive child." I think Fred Reed might have topped that accurate description. He refers to them as the "feral underclass."