Got an email yesterday from a political group reminding me to vote in the primary! Thought I had more time…I was planning to actually research the candidates, but it was too late. I filled out the ballot, sealed it up, and took it downtown to deposit it in a metal drop box near City Hall.
Sending a message
You can participate in a democratic process for at least two reasons: To help someone get elected or to send a message to the “front runners.” Though using voting for the second reason is not an organized activity at this point, it well could become so. I am not happy with either of the major parties. But I found out there are a lot of candidates for state offices who identify with alternative parties like the Libertarians or the Independents. I don’t know if any of these parties ever get their people elected. But by organizing and running they are trying to send a message to the major parties that there is a section of the population which is not happy with the Republicans or the Democrats. So by voting for candidates from alternative parties, you help them send this message.
Aren’t the Asses and the Dumbos actually opposing each other?
The media and the candidates themselves try to portray themselves as political opponents. But that’s not what I see. In 1963 the Democrats lost a president under mysterious circumstances. Why haven’t they ever gone after that issue? Or the 9/11 loss, which happened while a Republican President was in office?
Ike, upon retiring from the Presidency, warned us about the “military-industrial complex.” It is very real. Why don’t the politicians or the press ever mention it? Could it be that it rose to become all their masters, as Ike warned it might? That’s the theory most of us in the “alternative community” now operate on.
So by “sending a message” of non-support through the voting process, this is the power group we are ultimately communicating to.
Are politicians really necessary?
Many in my circles have argued that the importance of politics in life – especially in modern life – is extremely over-stated by the media and the politicians. Ultimately, I think that’s true.
But it would be unwise to think that just because most people, most communities, are perfectly able to take care of themselves and make their own best decisions, that this leaves no place for politics or politicians. The problem is to find that place and put those people in that place, and keep them there. In other words, government has a purpose. Most people just don’t know what it is.
Awareness of what is
The essence of politics is probably leadership. It’s secondary purpose is management. When an individual in a group rises to help that group through some challenge, and is successful at that, the group tends to look at that individual as “powerful.” The truth is that we are all powerful, but under those circumstances that individual was more aware of something than the others, and was able to communicate it in a way that got the group to work together to get something done that needed to be accomplished.
Probably that leader’s ideal scene would be to bring everyone in the group up to his own level of awareness, so they could all share equally in the responsibilities that accompany being more aware. But most leaders don’t know how to do that, or see their “power” as something they can use to their own personal advantage.
We should never forget, though, that “power” derives from an awareness of what is – some more basic truth of existence – and concentrates into the hands of a few individuals only when they are successful in keeping those awarenesses a secret from everyone else. If you can learn to become more aware of what is, you will become more free from the control of powerful elites, but you will also carry the responsibility of that increased awareness with you and feel the need to act on it, first by sharing that awareness, or that ability to be aware, as broadly as you can. You either join one of the power elites, or you “fight” them in that manner.