This post is an open letter to President Obama and all Washington elected policy makers. Beyond that, it is an ‘open letter’ to anyone. Its tone is blunt. I would much prefer a pleasant, conversational, shared problem solving, tone. I ask readers to ‘sense’ that I am not angry so much as I believe the words NO MORE are now in order, and perhaps can only be heard if stripped of all “pleasantries”.
President Obama, Senators and Congressman:
I appreciate how busy you can be. I’ve only just heard how many average hours are devoted by each elected official (esp. Senators, Congressmen), to confirm campaign funds. (Did not write number down – wish I had, it was ‘a lot’!) Scrambling toward re-election is common it seems. Absurd and counter-productive to getting nation’s business done. I know you know this! “But what can we do” is a possible response, along with “realities are…”
I suggest: forget “re-election”; if you are re-elected, great and fine, if you are not, someone will be elected, and that someone may/may not have newer, more creative and productive, more “true change” orientation. Outcome will either be ‘same old, same old’ with same faces, or ‘same old, same old’ with new faces, OR will be something leading the way to true changes, genuine correction, toward our highest human principles and highest national aims.
I am not a ‘tea-bagger’ by a long shot. I find it ironic that I have little in common with proposals from the extreme ‘conservative’ view, yet consider myself ultra-conservative in the sense of being a “conservationist” of ALL resources – human capacity and creativity, and earth-provided capacity and creativity.
KEY WORDS, in no ‘weighted’ order:
STEWARDSHIP. Acceptance of responsibility of stewardship leads to support of well-being of full citizen body, leads to fiscal appreciation of non-profit universal health care, leads to strong intent to protect earth capacity to provide for us, leads to understanding inter-connectedness of ALL life, leads to SERVICE over personal gain in power/wealth.
SERVICE. Requires appreciation of ‘stewardship’ . IS ONLY GENUINELY PRACTICED by willingness to examine one’s views for biases that prevent one from apprehending (bias usually acquired through life and educational experience but absorbed into belief systems as “true of all”). Service to stewardship requires CONSCIOUSLY RECOGNIZING a much LARGER PICTURE.
CONSCIOUSNESS requires recognition of human susceptibility to pursuit of “wants over needs”, along with other susceptibilities to “believe” biases as “truths”. Humans, even the most highly educated, are emotionally driven. WATCH BBC’S “Century of Self”. Appreciate how much you do to ‘persuade’; appreciate how much is done to persuade YOU. Understand manipulative persuasion comes from ‘less than fully conscious’ human behavior. FURTHER APPRECIATE, and get honest, that “socialism” is used as a manipulative to scare, a practice begun decades ago so most adults in America don’t know they’ve been manipulated but believe they know some “truth” – this includes many of you! (See Century of Self!)
INTEGRITY: Requires “attention to, and conscious steering from, hypocrisy”.
INTELLIGENT CRITICAL AND CREATIVE THINKING honors human capacity to find our way to a better time. This means willingness to EXAMINE power in-balances between “CORPORATISM” and individual citizen power. YOU KNOW, and YOU KNOW YOU KNOW, that average citizens have no resources to effectively “coerce” policy direction, even if they were rascal enough to want to use coercive means! Repeated bowing to large corporate “persuasion” and belief that power represents “human success” for benefit of all, is SELF-MANIPULATION, as well as RUINOUS TO BEST OUTCOME.
I’m sure there are more ‘key words’. I’m also sure I’ve made my point. I am not optimistic at human future, in our nation or elsewhere, if more are not “tuned into” the above.
We’ve practiced intentional manipulation of self, of others, for sake of power, glory, and grabbing essential resources, for at least 10,000 years – more or less. We say we want a better world but tell ourselves “same old same old” will get us there: sending our own to kill/maim others and be killed/maimed, (worse! setting up our own to deliver death and misery while not in personal danger – ‘out of sight, out of mind’ new killing devices, “justified” by use of emotionalized argument – “ours” don’t die so it’s an ‘improvement’!)!
We rationalize and justify our own corruption; we take pleasure by emotional enthrallment with “wealth/power” while lying to ourselves, and to those who would object, that our enthusiasm for wealth/power results from “studied opinion”.
Corruption – we’re shot through with it. This is not the worst. The worst is when we accept this and carry on with justification, cronyism, “tribalism” (seeking input only from those of background, experience and perspective similar to our own,), mis-information, shallow and “convenient” commitment to “high sounding” pronouncements.
It’s no secret that the entire globe, (all nations, all citizens, all life), is at risk at a level not known in the whole of recorded human history.
Time we “grow up”, lower our enthusiasm for value of competition and conquering – time we raise our enthusiasm for value of cooperation and mutual support.
I should not have to identify specific issues. All issues are inter-connected in that all issues contribute to our perilous situation. But, for what value it may have to help you identify “issues” here is a list.
Some are state issues, but they feed into our national reality: 1- re-writing history away from greater truth, (Texas); 2- willingness to demonize living breathing humans, to foster blame, (Arizona); 3- “soft response” to documented life-endangering, environmental endangering practices (Massey Mines; BP Oil); 4- power-plays and intentional obstruction by one part of Congress toward resolving issues; 5- refusal to seriously examine outcomes of “corporatism”, (military industrial corporate complex, now well entrenched); 6- refusal to quickly resolve campaign cost issues and involvement of powerful interests; 7- constant “game-playing strategic” approach to re-election and power building rather than adherence to genuine principles of key words above; 8- “schmoozing” the public, offering pablum level reassurances (manipulation); 9- enthusiasm for war as solution to global issues; 10- refusal to attend to American prison numbers and societal cost of incarceration for minor offenses; 11- refusal to get profit out of basic health care delivery (and you say you’re watching ‘bottom line’??); 12- disregard for loss of American practice of analytical critical thinking (including persistent adherence to a shallow view that education is about ’employment’); 13- cowardice in facing your electorate with a view to fostering their capacity to support ALL community member needs; 14- ignorance, (non-application), of full scope of human history and its implications; 15- hypocritical speech favoring ‘life’ while supporting war, ‘for-profit’ HC, and inappropriate incarceration; 16- use of manipulative language on self, other, and constituents to “emotionalize” “national pride, patriotism” instead of actually challenging self, others, and constituents to in-depth critical analysis. A patriot examines, questions, challenges by means of critical thinking.; 17- lack of imaginative capacity and will to re-think economic “rules of conduct”; 18- fear of significant change in status-quo; 19- ignorance that human social and economic structures spring from purposeful need to address COMMUNITY, including those who contribute in small ways, are not fame/career oriented, and may even be deeply impoverished.
I am not an alarmist; am not “frightened”! I will do what I do toward practicing the above identified key concepts, re-doubling my effort when I find myself ‘off course’, even while recognizing, because I am a realist with a pretty large view of humanity and our American way, that unless we have ‘critical mass’ attention to these, we are headed for worse than we presently experience.
We do not have time to tolerate and cater to divisive, blaming, demonizing practices. We do not have time to wait for the next generation to decide to be the ones who will practice integrity.
We DO have time, (NOW), to begin a shift in our personal commitment to above key principles. We do not need to condemn those who do not yet have this commitment, but we MUST LOOK ANY BROTHER, SISTER STRAIGHT IN THE EYES and SPEAK TRUTH TO POWER.
I do not call for “Sister Carrie” style behaviors. I call for behaviors more akin to any “whole mind trained”, principled, martial arts master: Non-judgmental, non-vindictive, CLARITY – out of which springs the word NO when a brother or sister attempts ‘power-over’ or sneaky manipulation.
In a real sense, that is the spirit in which I write this open letter: I am “looking you straight in the eyes” and telling you NO! No more same-old, same-old. I am telling you to do what we all need to do: GROW UP!
I do not envy you the confusion of these times and your role toward creating real and lasting improvement. You may/may not have my vote when the time comes. You will always have my well-wishes.
–My Best! –MaggieAnn