“The attempt to politicize everything is the destruction of politics. When everything is seen as relevant to politics, than politics has in fact become totalitarian.”
– Bernard Crick
Bernard Crick is a conceptual thinker. This is an all encompassing statement of the concept making what is complex simple. However, it is not a simplistic statement and I do not believe its author intends it to be simplistic. He understands the complexity in the simplicity of the statement.
The other side of the argument is that America is based upon politics. We were established by a political revolution. We threw out King George totalitarianism. That is a highly liberal idea made practical reality by revolution. That is what democracy is, freedom from totalitarianism. All in a democracy is political and politics define our values, ethics and morality. The danger is that freedom in democracy is the freedom to define our values, ethics and morality different from each other and that can lead to polarization by politics and that polarization pits ideological sides against each other in an attempt to gain power and control by politics. It is like dueling dictators vying for power and control when freedom basically goes out of control. Freedom is not the freedom to go out control. That only create chaos.
Our country is now highly chaotic. It is divided. We are no longer one nation UNDER God. We are over God in many respects. Freedom is the freedom to become little individualism gods when it goes out of control. We have to lose God to become our own gods. We become our own form of individual totalitarianism. Turn that into political ideology and we destroy ourselves. God is about individual freedom with limits and boundaries. When we lose God we go out of control with our freedom.
Totalitarianism is totalism and totalism is a form of mind control. Once mind control is established all is centered on and focused on what it is the source cause of the totalitarianism. That totalitarianism is self centered and self protective of what it is self centered upon. Totalitarianism is about being in absolute power and control and what is in absolute power and control can only exercise its power by mind control. Mind control is not freedom of mind. This is the destruction of political democracy, the destruction of the Constitution. Freedom, the freedom of mind, is when everything is not seen in relationship to the single dimension of politics. Yet, at the same time how can we escape the reality that politics are what lead us and therefore we center on politics? This is a complex issue and democracy is complex and it is MESSY because it is complex. What is freedom to you may not be freedom to me. There in lays the rub.
Without an objective moral and ethical standard freedom can go out of control. At the same time some would argue that the objective standard is totalitarian, that it violates the freedom of others to not have a different set of ethics and morality. We have all heard it said that we in America are in a culture war, an ideological war. It is a war over values, ethics and morality. It is a war and war is designed to kill and destroy. The question is, will this war kill our freedom and destroy our democracy? Personally, I believe it will.
Freedom is a two edged sword. It can cut a path to true freedom of mind with limits and boundaries in values, ethics and morality or it can cut a path of self centeredness that wants its own way by defining values, ethics and morality to suit its me,myself and I. That self centered understanding of freedom can turn us into situational ethics and a relativistic morality and that is a wrong understanding of freedom. Freedom can be turned into self centered totalitarianism and it will use the freedom of democracy to do that with by way of politics. All the while that we are doing this we believe we are making ourselves more free and in reality we are making ourselves less free.
I am not a political ideologue. I am not conservative, progressive, libertarian, etc.
I am independent. I hold both liberal and conservative views and my own views. I don’t drink tea or Kool Aide.
My conservative friends believe I am a liberal and my liberal friends believe I am a conservative and those who cannot figure me out say I must be libertarian. Perfect. Exactly what I want. In my experience ideologues do not really understand what a true independent is. You must have a label. Sides must be chosen. After all, this is political ideological war. Whose side are you really on? Are you friend or enemy? I have never passed anyone’s ideological litmus test.
I suppose the independent could be seen as being the self centered ideology that I speak to. That the independent decides his or her ideology or position on issues. At the same time the ideal of the independent is to think for him or her self without a single dimension ideology knee jerk thinking for him or her. All I really know is that political ideology is centered upon itself. The more right that ideology believes itself to be the more centered upon itself that it is. We cannot escape that reality. There in lays the rub.
I will make one controversial independent statement. I believe God is an independent. (That does not mean He is a Tea Party independent which is nothing more than pissed off republicans with libertarians and some conservative democrats mixed in – if they are a PARTY they are ideological in basis just like the democrats, etc.) Of course, then there are those who would argue that God is totalitarianism. Personally, I believe anyone who would say that does not know God or understand what Gods freedom truly is. They do not understand what one nation under God really is. Then again, freedom is the freedom of religion that defines who God is differently from each other. Here is the problem, do you see God through your political ideology and on your side or do you see God as He is?
One nation under God has a lot to do with what Mr. Crick is stating. One nation under God means God is our ultimate authority that is to guide us. Each ideology has a different viewpoint of who God is and they use God for their political purposes. That is just one reason why I believe God is really an independent. He stands outside of it all. By the way, I do not believe the Christian right has it all right. No one has it all right. Only God has it all right. Does freedom of religion then define who the right God is? Welcome to democracy based upon freedom of religion, freedom of thought. All I know is if we lose who God really is we become totalitarian. We become chaos. The downside to freedom in our democracy is the freedom to change or deny who God really is or not believe in Him at all. There in lays the rub.
Our country is not a Christian church/state. It is freedom of religion which is freedom from church/state. Freedom of religion is not based in the power and control of the church/state. Church/state is totalitarian. Freedom of religion is liberal far left compared to church/state. That is, if you look at that politically. We are not theocratic based. We are freedom of religion based. Both of these political systems have their upside and downside. Both can destroy themselves by totalitarianism, by how they define God. Just look at the Russian Orthodox Church as a church/state circa 1917. Probably the largest church collapse in the history of the church since Christ. Now look at us circa today with freedom away from the church/state. Is this just different means to the same collapse end? Food for critical thinking thought.
I am not objective rational independent completely. I have bias. I believe in God. None of us can escape our bias. No one is truly 100% independent. Not really. One nation under God is not independent from God. However God is independent. He is stand alone God. One nation under God is a nation dependent upon God. Therefore, you can still be independent and still believe in God at the same time in our political system. When political ideology defines God around its ideology that ideology is not being defined by God, it is not under God and that is totalitarianism. The more we define God by a political ideology the more we lose one nation under God and that leads to dictatorship by political ideologies. Our political ideology becomes our God and that is totalitarian. That is polarization, that is ideological war.
I believe in the end it all boils down to freedom of religion in our democracy that is really based upon one nation under God. Freedom of religion does not define who God is. So is who God is assumed by freedom of religion? That would be a contradiction by the assumed being a de facto definition of who God is. Not all of our founding fathers were Christians. I believe a lot of idealistic Christians would like to believe that they were.
Freedom of religion and one nation under God can at times be a contradiction and they also can conflict with each other.
I believe our nation is headed towards another revolution. Another civil war is coming if the polarization does not stop. If that civil war comes it will be all about totalitarianism. Freedom of religion and one nation under God will be in the middle of it. Our basis will be at the center of it. Both sides will claim that God is on their side. The south during the civil war believed God was on their side and so did the north. Time will tell how this all unfolds.
I can make an argument against the positions I take here. That is an independent. I do not at all have it all figured out. That would be ideological if I had it all figured out. So does that mean I am relativistic and situational? I will tell you, lol, when I get it all figured out. It really only means that I am processed based, that I am on a journey. The journey has not ended. At the same time since I believe in God I believe in absolutes. To say there are not absolutes is an absolute statement. A contradiction. However, under freedom of religion my idea of Gods absolutes and another persons ideas of Gods absolutes can be radically different. There in lays the rub. So are we really one nation under the same God? No. Is that a contradiction? Yes. Welcome to democracy.
Again, Mr. Cricks statement is not simplistic. It is complex and he knows that it is. It is also brilliant. It is a statement that requires itself to be fleshed out. I believe it is a warning to us all no matter what your politics may be. It is a provocative statement that makes you think it through. Excellent work, Mr. Crick.
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