Sunday, May 29, 2005

Topic of the Week - America's Focus

The last few weeks I have been very sharp in my rhetoric on The Christian Right (their brain, political correctness, evolution vs. intelligent design...). Whenever Extremism rears its ugly head, I have a tendency to attack it head on. That being said, I do believe views on the extreme left and extreme right need to be heard and there is a political forum for this dialogue. However, when one tries to incorporate religion into our political system, there should be no political forum - period. If one cares to debate this, please go ahead and post your comments on this blog.

Continuing on this theme of a political forum for discussion and debate, it occurs to me we should frame the debate in a way that keeps us focused. That is, frame the political debate on issues, values and actions that are about politics, not about religion. The religious "noise" has no room in our political system, but our focus has been primarily on these issues. I, for one, have been guilty of this lack of focus. I think we need to frame reality in our political system to what the intent has always been...let me explain.

Approximately 30 years ago, the Religious Right was making noise politically through Jerry Falwell, Jim & Tammy Baker and others....their religious beliefs were so conservative most educated people did not give them credence politically...but the birth of Evangelism, through mass media, had begun. At this time, the Republican Party was struggling to define their identity with the masses and their elitism was hurting its efforts at a grass roots level. Therein the birth of The Christian Coalition in 1987 and its mission to bring politics and religious beliefs together at the grass roots level to persuade (and manipulate) the conservative Christians by aligning with the Republican party. And money...a lot of money was allocated to fund Republicans across the spectrum.

If you question the political aim and funding behind The Christian Coalition, which extends to today's Christian Right into organizations we know as Focus on the Family, Family Research Council, etc. Think about this for a moment...can anyone name one Democrat that is funded by a Christian organization, specifically The Christian Coalition or any other Christian organization that is active in politics? No, I doubt you can. So, the Republican Party and the Christian Coalition aligned together to meld the Republican Party (or a significant part of the Republican Party) to what we know currently...a party that is actually funded and is incorporating religion into our political system. Don't act too surprised, it has been the intent all along, and we have silently allowed this to happen.

So unfortunately, the noise we hear daily made by Christian organizations and Republican politicians on stem cell research, gay marriage, 'culture of life,' the liberal media, etc, etc., is actually a very organized coalition attempting to transform public policy in manipulating a significant percentage of the populace who are focused on incorporating religious beliefs within our political system...all the while these 'Christians' are voting and supporting politicians who are affecting themselves adversely...through economic policy, domestic policy and foreign policy.

Where is the focus? Take a hard look at our country today. Where are we? Our national debt is at catastrophic levels where top tier nations are reducing their investment in America. Our "brand," meaning our standing in the world, is at an all time low which trickles down to American made goods & services realizing more buying resistance than ever before. The amount of personal debt is at an all time high. The gap between the elite wealthy (top one percent) and the rest of the populace is at an all time high. Our educational system continues to fall in quality each year when compared to other first world nations. The American worker is not has hungry (motivated) as our counterparts in Asia and other emerging countries throughout the world. Our military is so depleted...spread so thin that the active, reserves and guard are continually being shipped back to Iraq and other parts of the world after completing their military service time...and the military is now consistently missing their recruiting goals (in March, the Army missed its goal by 27 percent).

We are focused on cultural issues while the world is passing us by...actually worse. The World is beginning to look down on America and see our country as vulnerable in the industries we used to dominate (technology, auto, telecommunications...) You don't believe it? Read the Wall Street Journal, the top business magazines (especially The Economist), the New York Times, CNBC, FOX news and begin to pay attention to those people whose job it is to evaluate, study, report and assess our standing in the world economically, culturally and militarily. In short five years, our country has gone from Super Power with good standing across the world, to vulnerable, arrogant, distrustful...with an approval rating, both domestically and with foreign nations as the lowest of any regime in recent history.

It seems to me that we, the American people, need to get focused on the real issues...immediately.

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