Having been asked to briefly identify the main factors which shape the modern American political discourse, I wish to make this writing pithy. It must be noted that the factors which find mention here are not all the factors, nor are these explained in the depth of their deserved length. It would be more appropriate with regards to thoroughness to write extensively on such an issue. And yet, this will have to do. To start, then, we must recognize that politics is not a snobbish term; viz. we are wholly unconcerned of whether one career liar gets elected over another, whether one endlessly confusing law gets passed over another. Instead, we are discussing here the politics that is informed directly by the culture, and that culture by philosophy, and philosophy by religion, and the religion by God. In light of this, it is warranted that politics, as it really is, be taken seriously.
The factors which shape the current political discourse are vastly complex. However, I believe that they can be distilled into two more easily grasped aspects. We shall call these the aspects of Subjectivity and Power. Identifying these factors is of towering importance. They dictate, direct, and determine how people see politics; how people see the world.
First, there is the aspect of Subjectivity. The world has traditionally been constructed on the basis of a value system. Although copious value structures have been adhered to, the Christian values system dominated the Western World for the majority of the first two millennia after Christ. Humanity has used this structure to form more and more accurate views of the world; and, originally, these pursuits were to glorify God Himself. But, as man’s understanding extended, he began to convince himself that he was a better savior for himself than was God. Man no longer believed he needed God. Shortly following this the value system crashed tumultuously. Man was his own god. Problems started to occur, nonetheless, when it was realized that the value system was gone. No longer was one individual more right than another, for there was no standard to be right against. Each man could measure himself howsoever he fancied. This led to Subjectivity. It was not up to God, society, or even a complex pagan religion to decide what was right and wrong, good and evil. No, it was up to each individual to decide for themselves what was right and wrong, good and evil. Subjectivity, therefore, is the first pillar that holds up modern political discourse: “I can define the world as I see fit.”
Upon the falling of objectivity and the rise of Subjectivism, thinkers and society began to realize that nothing could be constructed on such shaky ground. There had to be something on which to base Subjectivity lest it collapse. The filler for this void was Power, the second aspect which shapes modern political discourse. We would be mistaken if we said that the Power being spoken of here is not married to Marxism. Karl Marx was a philosopher thinking on the back of Subjectivism. He believed that there were two classes of people in the world, the oppressors and the oppressed. Marx himself did not synthesize Power and his own philosophy in the way in which it is understood today; the Subjectivists took Marx’s idea of oppressor and oppressed and applied it to their void. Thus, the foundation which Subjectivism found was Power. Anyone who thought that another’s view of the world was incorrect now had to be silenced for two reasons: first, because they were being the oppressor, and, second, because any view not worshipping Marxism was false.
Although this seems implausibly paradoxical, that does not stop it from being a reality. These two aspects, that of Subjectivity and Marxist Power are what rule political discourse. When Power came into Subjectivity, it was no longer that there was an overall truth guiding everyone, it was now that those with the most Power and force made the truth for all others. If you were to tell me that I am incorrect about something and I am in agreement with the Marxists, then you are being an oppressor. However, if I tell you that you are wrong because you do not agree with the Marxist idea, then I am saving the world. Objective truth no longer matters, and neither does sincerity or decency. Only the truth of the Powerful matters. Everything that should concern a person is their own truth and if that truth fits in the Marxist cog. If it does not fit, then you are an oppressor. Power will be wielded against you to make you silenced. Furthermore, if you do not want to advance the Marxist agenda, then you are also an oppressor because you are not actively furthering the vision.
You can see these things, Subjectivity and Power, at work every day. Can a person change their biological gender? Can we spend trillions of useless dollars and say that we are trying to get out of national debt? Can we destroy and burn and kill cities and people and culture? Do the laws of mathematics and science apply? Does two added two equal four? Should people be silent if they say the wrong thing? Can I lie and cheat and steal to get myself to power? Can you kill an innocent baby? Can you tarnish the greatest culture on Earth? Must I worship my fellow man because he has been oppressed? Is there any real truth? Can I lie to your face? What are the limits if there are any? Can I get rid of you because you don’t agree with me? The answer to all these questions is: if it is your Subjective truth and if it aligns with those Marxists in Power, then go right ahead.
This is the sad reality of modern politics. When nothing matters except Subjectivity, then anyone can get away with anything if it in agreement with the Powerful. What is at work in politics is not some petty law or silly order. What is at work in politics is the battle, fundamentally, for what is True and what is Right. So then, I close this short writing leaving much unsaid. However, the weight of such issues as these are difficult to overestimate. The world is fallen and broken but the soul of man is eternal. What shapes the modern political discourse is fallen and broken and the ones who follow Subjectivity and Power are sadly lost. We have substituted Truth for Subjectivity; we have substituted God for idols; we have become our own failing savior;--and that is what shapes the political discourse.
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