Archive for July, 2021

Lesson 601 It’s All About Power

Digital media enabled politics to become a power game.

Social media gave us new and powerful tools to communicate directly with individuals and specific groups.

Extremists used these tools to dominate politics. Legislatures became polarized and lost touch with their constituents.

Many hard working Americans were already feeling that Washington was no longer in touch with their needs.

This new media environment enabled a reality-show host to run for president.

He chose to run as a Republican… and promised his audiences everything, but delivered nothing but entertainment.

Additional right wing extremist groups saw opportunities for themselves and soon joined in.

The Republican Party itself stopped competing on issues… and began to concentrate on power-focused tactics.

Today’s politics has become a game of getting and holding on to power. At least for now, there is no good place for those primarily interested in policies and ideas.

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Lesson 600 Free Press Expectations

The Constitution guarantees the freedom of the press…

Beyond the press, balancing civil liberties and human rights for everyone was clearly on the minds of our founders.

They put their ideas about what America could become in the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution.

From what they wrote, they simply had to know they were leaving slavery and inequality for others to deal with.

They established values they thought would prevent future autocrats from destroying their grand experiment.

And there also was no way they could ever have anticipated the Internet, television, and social media.

We therefore recently have become overwhelmed by an unanticipated misinformation environment.

As a result, journalists must now leave behind traditional issues reporting practices… and focus only on finding and reporting truth and facts. America always has been a work in progress, and now journalists have a new role to play.

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Lesson 599 The Problem With Democrats

Too many voices get lost in the new media swamp.

Biden’s priority to eliminate COVID is fine, but other issues are requiring immediate action.

Simple talking points should be prepared on voter laws, the border, guns, infrastructure, climate, and democracy.

Every democrat in the nation should use them as news headlines appear each day.

The most urgent talking points should be shouted daily from the White House on multiple media platforms.

Democrats need a billionaire-funded super PAC to add intensity.

Texas democrats mean well…but to be effective they simply must practice “talking-point discipline.”

Media revolutions changed the game, and the opposition is winning. It’s long past time for the Democrats to join the social media shaped world and get “talking point” disciplined, focused, and tough!

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Lesson 598 Cruelty Politics

In his 2016 campaign, without a strategy or plan, Trump fell back on his past practice of attacking adversaries.

The reality show host simply stumbled into using cruel remarks to entertain people attending his rallies.

He quickly found that his bold remarks would produce news headlines, and live cable TV coverage would follow.

He also found that yelling “build a border wall” and “make America great again” would bring a rousing applause.

Twitter rants and mean-spirited attacks resulted in daily news headlines and increased visibility.

Ideology lost its political appeal, extremists took over, and social media became their weapons of choice

Eventually, attacking adversaries became the best pathway to power.

Voting these extremists out of office now seems to be the only sure way to save democracy

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Lesson 597 Bipartisanship Is Dead

Both parties have been far too partisan for far too long.

Democrats are split between too many single-minded liberals and middle-of-the-road centrists.

Republicans are too focused on their ” I’m in it for me” primary election survival.

The possibility of a dictatorship is not frightening enough for far too many Americans.

There seems to be a widespread almost paralyzing fear of Trump’s most extreme supporters.

There is too much easy rejection of environmental science and the clear evidence supporting climate change.

There is too little appreciation of the precious individual freedom promises of a democracy.

The ‘what’s in it for me” culture needs to end, and we need to get back to the “it’s really about us” culture.

Bipartisan governance will very likely need to wait for a total House and Senate political housecleaning.

All this is to say… we need to make sure we elect a democracy-committed and science-supporting presidential candidate in 2024!

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