This week, I decided to take a shot at backing away from the day-to-day din of vitriolic activity going on in our country these days to see if I could discern the “root” of it all. As I got into that thought process, I’ll have to admit that my disdain for those pushing us toward liberalism as a thing in itself probably affected any objectivity I might otherwise have brought to the table. Given that admission up front, though, I do think there is merit in at least considering something I came up with.
I follow quite a bit of opinion expressions in the media, and I have not heard what I’ll be expressing here from any of the sources I monitor — so if I’m repeating a concept somebody more famous than I am has already promulgated, it’s not plagiarism, it’s just ignorance.
What — and/or who— is driving this rapidly-accelerating move toward liberal interpretations of almost everything — the Constitution [including, perhaps especially, the 1st and 10th Amendments], human sexuality, religious liberty, even the Bible [i.e., whether it’s relevant anymore, and if so, its interpretation] …? My career experience taught me that consistent movement in a direction over time isn’t something that “just happens”. Such movement is the result of conceptualizing what that direction should be, developing a plan for converting that concept to reality, and effectively managing the execution of that plan.
Who’s At The Helm?
Although they might argue with use of the label “Liberal” [preferring labels with less potential for negative connotation, like “Progressive”], I doubt that most Democrats would argue that they clearly fit into this ideological category [their Party Platform document would certainly support that characterization]. However, at the risk of sounding a bit sarcastic, maybe even crass, I honestly don’t think that our current elected Legislators [by and large, with some exceptions, of course] are the “sharpest knives in the drawer”, capable of effectively performing the requisite components mentioned above to produce movement in a direction over time. I’d even go so far as to say that an alarming number of them are “a couple of bricks shy of a load”, “a few French fries short of a Happy Meal”, … well, you get the picture.
So if Democrats are not driving the movement, what — or who — is? I took to heart and have always considered very wise something one of my college professors said — “If you want to figure out how things work and who the movers and shakers are, draw a diagram of the ‘system’, and follow the money” [“system” in this context means people and entities involved, and interactions / transactions that take place among them; a popular methodology for depicting “systems” this way is to draw Entity Relationship Diagrams].
I mentioned in a post last February [Fake News Or Just Meaningless News?] that 90 percent of U.S. media is controlled by six corporations [see this Link to the Source of information referenced in that post]. We can logically assume that they are driven by at least two factors that bring into question their objectivity: 1) their responsibility to their shareholders to maximize profits; and 2) the worldview of their top leadership [i.e., the context within which these leaders make decisions about what does and does not make it into their publications and broadcasts]. Could it be that the media is driving this liberal agenda, and that Democrats — as well as scores, maybe hundreds, of well-funded advocacy organizations — are simply pawns [operatives]? [The “follow the money” train of thought would suggest that the actions of most Legislators are driven by two things: lobbyists pushing the interests of businesses and other organizations (including advocacy organizations); and donors who can provide the funds to get them re-elected.]
The Bigger Question
That liberal media moguls are driving movement in their preferred direction may seem far-fetched, particularly to people [like me] who want this country to operate in the way envisioned by our Founding Fathers. Realistically, though, how else could even a hint of activity [particularly in confrontational situations that make for good headlines and “breaking news”] on some particular issue [gay marriage, transgender “rights”, “discrimination” against LGBT citizens, police “brutality”, a $15 minimum wage, tearing down monuments that some people consider offensive, sanctuary cities …] almost instantly flood the media on any given day — maybe for days or even weeks? One could argue that the issue itself doesn’t matter. It’s the liberal agenda, as a thing in itself, that matters — i.e., any “hot button” event du jour on which well-known people whose livelihoods depend on controversy and media visibility can capitalize.
The Even Bigger Question
A fourth element I would add to the requisite components mentioned above to produce movement in a direction over time is a Project Manager — sort of a CEO of the process. The space program of the 1960s, brought about by John Kennedy’s bold 1961 charge to “put a man on the moon by the end of this decade”, was successful because of the efforts of many highly intelligent people in multiple disciplines — Engineering, Physics, Chemistry, Materials Science, Mathematics, Astronomy, Medicine, Psychology, … . However, without the organizational and management skills [in addition to his substantial technical skills as an Aerospace Engineer] of Dr. Werner Von Braun [1912-1977], that success would not have been possible [Von Braun was Center Director at NASA’s facility in Huntsville, Alabama, where he headed the Apollo Applications Program that NASA had established in 1968 to develop manned space missions].
So the even bigger question, if the basic premise of what I’m postulating here is valid, is “Who is the Werner Von Braun of the Liberal movement?”. I didn’t get into that phase of this thought process before reaching my self-imposed length limit in this post, but it’s an intriguing question. I may pick up on this theme in a future post.
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Charles M. Jones