Judgement of America

The Holy Bible is a fount of knowledge as well as being the foundation of western civilization. The trick, as always, is to interpret passages correctly and apply them appropriately. The difficulty of this task is always increased by the more arcane and recondite passages. Here YPC wants to talk about the transition to a new president, especially after the SEN Sessions confirmation hearings in which the Senator behaved admirably but his Democrat critics did not.

The Judgement of Solomon (1 Kings 3:16-28) might help to provide some clarity into the mindset and motivations of those involved. This Old Testament passage recounts when two mothers living in the same house, each the mother of an infant son, came to Solomon. One of the babies had died, and each claimed the remaining boy as her own. Calling for a sword, Solomon declared his judgment: the baby would be cut in two and each woman would receive half. One mother accepted the ruling, but the other begged, “Give the baby to her, just don’t kill him!”. Solomon declared the second woman the true mother as she would even give up her baby to save its life.

In light of this passage, and in light of the recent presidential election, it would be facile and doubtless incorrect to claim that Republicans care about America while Democrats do not. And YPC is truly trying to walk a mile in the Democrats’ shoes, and not just because he would be a mile away from with Democrats with their shoes. Instead, the passage reveals something timeless about human nature that provides insight into the matter at hand. The tenor of the post-election debate is revealing with Republicans saying “Make America great again” and Democrats asking, “What was so great about America?” At the very least, there is an implied temporal directionality with Republicans looking at “golden ages” and Democrats at a utopian future. Nevertheless, there is something tangible worth in golden ages, while the attractions of utopias that require “starting from zero” have been proven problematic.

Extending these insights allow for the creation of a 21st century working definition of right-wing, Republican conservatism and left-wing, Democrat liberalism / progressivism / socialism that I find helpful because it actually maps to something in the real world that is tangible. Conservatism is based on long-term complex reality, while liberalism is based on short-term simplistic narrative. The conservative position is not being reified here because 21st century politics is dominated by the media, which intermediates people’s experience with reality. In fact, at times media appears to dominate reality. One need only consider the experience of people with movie stars, the loyalty they inspire as well as the compensation they receive, to appreciate the power of media. However, the naive allegiance the media are used to enjoying is slipping as people experience the disappointment of being manipulated and lied to repeatedly. The media establishment however will not allow their high-status positions to be taken away without a fight, and this conflict may dominate the politics during the upcoming years and perhaps even longer.

 

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