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The Political, The Personal and Philosophy


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John Schroeder

July 9 2017


If you are not watching the host’s new TV show, at least recording it and watching it at a more convenient time, you are missing something extraordinary.  This is an unsolicited and uncompensated plug for good television in the midst of a sea of garbage.  The one-on-one’s are typically great Hewitt interviews.  Yesterday’s Daniel Silva interview demonstrated how great authors give great insight into our world.  But yesterday’s panel was one of the most insightful television segments I have seen in quite some time.

The discussion surrounded what they came to describe as the “internet civil war.”  They were quick to point out that the nation seems to be functioning reasonably well, but that on the internet it does appear to be in complete turmoil.  They noted the unbridgeable political divide that defines the debate.  As they discussed it it became apparent that, at least when it comes to internet debate, everything, I repeat everything, is personal – and it goes no further.  If you are personally repulsed by the president then he can do no good.  Similarly, if you find him suitable, he can do no wrong.  It is a personal evaluation based on a personal response – it’s not just personal, it in personal-squared.

As I thought about the very interesting discussion, it dawned on me that much of this can be laid at Obama’s feet.  During his administration everything was viewed through the lens of race.  Race is a personal characteristic – not a political one, not an ideological one and certainly not a religious one.  Therefore, because everything was about race, everything was about Obama, not his ideas, his governance or his ideology.  It began even before he took office.  Any disagreement with Obama was immediately cast as racist and therefore became personal.  Looked at this way, it is not terribly surprising that we find ourselves in this mess.

But there is something even deeper at play.

The personalization phenomena also reflects the self-esteem phenomena that has swept the nation in the last 50 years or so.....(Snip)

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