Given our two major parties either are in alignment on major policies or in silent agreement to keep certain hot button issues at the boiling point, a little competition might be expected to come in to take advantage of an under served market. There actually are people who have noticed continuing down our present fiscal path can only end in disaster. The only question is when. Maybe they’ve noticed our rapidly aging population and realize it is also on the verge of declining. Just to keep our social programs going we need more not fewer people. Free markets have raised millions and millions of people out of grinding poverty and some recognize this and fear the effects of a reversal. We live in a shrinking world and it’s unreasonable to think we can be a walled off “Big Switzerland.” Most don’t want to be asked if they’re pro-life or pro-choice when they’re actually somewhere in the middle. Instead of endless fruitless fighting about guns many are asking if all these people knew the perpetrators of these mass murders were disturbed or had mental problems why was d nothing was done? All these people just might be asking “where do I go to find somebody to represent my views?”
Progressives may feel they have won the culture wars, but the backlash has contributed mightily to the fact Democrats control very little that matters. Further it has greatly contributed to the nations ugly divide. An update of William Graham Sumner’s “Forgotten Man” might be illuminating. In his 1876 essay he put it in algebraic terms,
As soon as A observes something which seems to him wrong, from which X is suffering, A talks it over with B, and A and B then propose to get a law passed to remedy the evil and help X. Their law always proposes to determine what C shall do for X, or, in better case, what A, B, and C shall do for X… What I want to do is to look up C. I want to show you what manner of man he is. I call him the Forgotten Man. perhaps the appellation is not strictly correct. he is the man who never is thought of…. I call him the forgotten man… He works, he votes, generally he prays—but he always pays…”
How this works in today’s world, A and B are elites who see X’s plight. A and B have determine much of X’s problems is due to “White Privilege.” X is anyone not a the middle class white male C. The remedy out of fairness is to put X above C in college admissions, jobs and well, any position in the community where X is perceived not to be represented in adequate numbers. C who often lives on the edge himself feels anything but privileged. In most cases he believes he personally has never done any harm to X. His family never owned slaves many having come to this country well after the civil war from a place where they were oppressed. In his mind he has treated everyone well, yet feels he is the only one paying a price. That price isn’t only monetary but culturally. C often is religious and on things such as gay weddings is adapting to change Apparently this isn’t good enough for the A & B elites. They demand you must custom design and bake the cake for ta gay wedding. Since nobody in their right mind would actually eat such a cake at the wedding, this can only be seen a cruel and vindictive by C. Artist Jon McNaughton captured this sense of abandonment in his painting the “Forgotten Man” (one of a series),
You might not think much of the subject or the painting as a work of art but you have to see it illustrates the feelings of the great numbers of white males.. Remember these white men have wives and children and as a block they form Trump’s base. By putting the burden of X’s problems squarely on C, the elites A & B created Trumpism and further divided the nation. This is a formula for disaster.
Having reduced their politics to appealing to the electorate only as aggrieved angry groups, our major parties have created a split nation. A nation where we no longer watch the same TV programs or movies. Over the years the Academy Awards has been one of the most watched annual programs but this year how many Trump supporters tuned in to be berated from the Oscar stage. Trump voters or not, few saw the movies nominated. Judging from their box offices they only appealed to elites rather than the masses. Elites control literally all the major awards in every area. How else do you explain the 9 year TV ratings and critical success “the Middle” won only one minor Emmy while the progressive fantasy Modern Family bathed in them. After all, who cares about Middle America? Fox news and talk radio rose out of a segment of the America no one cared to acknowledge. Whether in entertainment or news we have retreated to places where we are reinforced in our attitudes. No wonder our politicians can’t take care of the nation’s business.
When the products dominating any market fail to deliver, the door is open to a new entrant. The minor parties in 2016 failed to offer a better mix of candidates and policies than the two majors even though the Democrats and Republicans put forth the least appealing candidates in our history. They had their chance and failed miserably. The only viable answer going forward is a new party. One first of all that eschews past group animosities and grievances. Rather than focusing on groups, the emphasis has to be on the individual going forward. Simply all the people who vote a group identity have already been appealed to and enlisted by the two major parties. From black to white and from female to male there just isn’t room for a new party making its appeal on tribal identities . A “Future Party” less concerned with past blame for poor education and lack of economic success among the certain segments of our populous instead concentrating on how to actually improve their prospects.. Instead of pointing fingers for our unsustainable national debt, one offering real plans to put us a solid fiscal footing. Focus on how to make lives better. The appeal has to be on how we’re going to open the way moving forward for you to have a better life no matter who you are. The focus has to be on the future hence the party name.
Emphasizing the future will allow us to take a fresh look at our problems. For instance, should K-12 education continue to be based primarily on a German system from the 1800s in the digital age? Talking about the best way forward on our pressing problems is far more likely to bring people together than endlessly replaying animosities of the past. Instead of “my tribe good and your tribe bad” let’s assume good faith and intentions on the part of all until proven otherwise. That in turn may actually lead to positive solutions.
In any case the future will make changes in our tribes. For instance, it’s doing away of group racial and ethnic identities at an ever-increasing pace. Presently 1 in every 6 newlyweds are marring someone of a different race or ethnicity. Sorting out our family trees and DNA’s will definitely growth industries. It will be interesting to see how many people check the Multiracial box in the 2020 census. It could easily show this group is the fastest growing group in America. As more and more people are thrown together in our ever-growing urban areas differences in race, ethnicity and sexual preference that seemed so large a few decades ago just won’t be seen that way in the future. The upcoming Royal wedding should be seen as a window into a very blended future.
A party embracing this “Future” could have great success especially when contrasted to our present two-party ugliness. Our next post will show how this can be accomplished.
Ffrom black to white and from female to male A “Future Party” less concerned with past blame for poor education and economic success among the poorer segment of our populous than how to actually improve their prospects.. Instead of pointing fingers for our unsustainable national debt, one offering real plans to put us a solid fiscal footing.