Demonization of Dissent: A Discourse

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In the lead up to an election, candidates provide their constituents with a manifesto, attempt to secure mandate of their constituency. Holding manifestos equal, manifestos that are backed by a philosophy are more believable than those that seem not to be bonded with a philosophy. In the last elections, say what you want about how much you like or hate Donald Trump, only the President and Bernie Sanders had well bonded philosophies behind their manifestos.

Bernie wanted to and still wants to socialize capitalism — he means well, but attempting to socialize capitalism is akin to pretending that wearing a large shirt means your abs are flat. Socialism and Capitalism are like oil and water, you can put them together, but they never will become one new substance, always will be no more than a mixture.

With respect to Donald Trump, there was a manifesto, and the philosophy was capitalism rounded out with a commitment to bringing back lost jobs, or creation of new jobs, particularly blue collar jobs. Never mind that white collar jobs are not in quite as much supply as could be assumed.

The President has attempted to fulfill his manifesto, albeit using strategies I personally very much disagree with. I felt tax cuts were not the most effective strategy for bringing back jobs or creating new jobs because they were not targeted, with outcome firms could deploy the monetary largesse towards other objectives.

With respect to the North Korea thing, Trump was belligerent enough to get Kim to have new found respect for America, with outcome Kim was willing to come to the negotiation table. But then Trump would not let go of the process, would not let the process proceed down the path with highest likelihood of success.

Whenever negotiations are handled by career diplomats, diplomats on both sides of the aisle know they will be assessed on basis of capacity for finding a deal their bosses can find acceptable. In presence of this incentive, negotiations handled by career diplomats have greatest chances of success. On the contrary, with egos of Trump and Kim at the negotiation table, talks faltered, and the initiative Trump had begotten he himself ended up short circuiting.

In so far as the whole ‘wall’ thing was concerned, I never did believe in that project, but then neither did many Republican senators, and just about all of Democratic senators. I had thought, however, that Trump would get his way through the Senate, but was I wrong.

In order for Senator Clinton to win the Democratic ticket, she had to convince voters not that her philosophy was best, but that she stood the best chance of besting Donald Trump at the polls. In context of party primaries, the probability of besting the other party at the polls always is more important than the philosophy at play. So then, the compromise always is that the candidate considered to have the best chance of winning borrows something from any other strong candidate.

So then Senator Clinton adopted Bernie’s socialist philosophy of free college education.

It worked like a charm.

Democrats felt her mix of socialism, which would be restricted to mixing in of free college education into capitalism, had a better chance of beating Trump than Bernie’s all out socialist capitalism philosophy. So then, Bernie’s supporters became the dissenters within the Democratic party, Clinton’s the voices of the Democratic party.

On the Republican side of the equation, it pretty much was Donald Trump that distinguished himself with a philosophy. So then Donald Trump and his supporters became the voices of the Republican party, supporters of his opponents became dissenters.

Suppose, however, that Bernie did not initially dissent with Clinton over free college education. We would have that no matter how bad an idea I believe free college education to be for an innovation driven economy, that free college education never would have become part of Senator Clinton’s manifesto.

On the Republican side of things, the fight against the wall, and willingness to dissent with a white supremacist ideology within the Republican party reveals voices of dissenters within the party.

Consider, however, that absent presence of dissenters within either of the Republican party, or the Democratic party, or within the larger body polity, Democracy would lack credibility.

It is presence of dissent, acceptance of right to dissent, and willingness to engage with dissent that distinguishes democracies from autocracies. We have then that for any elected official to demonize dissenters implies he or she does not understand that dissent and all that surrounds dissent are essence of well functioning democracies.

In presence of normativeness of dissent for credibility of a democracy, dissenters never should be demonized, are essential to well functioning of any democracy.

While dissent merely for the sake of dissent does not augur well for democracies, dissent that is rooted in well founded opinions always is good for well functioning of democracies. In the engagement that occurs around dissent, ideally a country arrives at the best solutions to it’s varied challenges.

If the United States of America is to become great again, it must once again be a country within which within the Senate or the House, or in the larger body polity, dissent and willingness to negotiate dissent are seen for what they are, which is, evidence for credibility of a democracy.

Educator and Researcher, Believer in Spirituality, Life is serious business, but we all are pilgrims so I write about important stuff with empathy and ethos

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