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The New War

Howell Hurst 2020 Presidential Election, Defense vs Diplomacy, Defining Trump, People, People Politics, Presidential Election, Trump


The inconsistencies of this president and his cartwheeling politics of palace intrigue are enough to drive one to despair.

A good old boy right-wing acquaintance of mine still sees Mr. Trump as the savior of our country. He, like Trump, is a basher of media, sees conspiracies in every shadowy corner, and blames everything that does not fit into his worldview on “The Democrats.”

He and others loyal to the president are not stupid. They are, however, ignorant. Instead of reading, Mr. Trump and my acquaintance remain addicted to intellectually conservative cable TV and radio talk show babblers.

There is only one Hannity, thank the stars. And there is only one multimillionaire Rush Limbaugh, the original petrified thinker, who lately– after saying Hurricane Irma is “Fake” – finally ran out of town to save his life.

What can one say about such intellectually stagnant people? We must admit that their thinking is cohesive: they all religiously worship corporations and their headlong jousting of their hero Knight: Profits.

John Steinbeck pointed out years ago that the modern corporation is the most highly adept invention man has ever devised to make one thing: Money. But, as he emphasized, when it comes to creating “greatness:” it is helpless.

You cannot create greatness with money. You cannot make a nation great with money. A nation does not operate like a corporation. A nation is not a business. A nation is a people dealing in ideas. A people who develop and live by a set of agreed-upon values derived from wise ideas.

Americans today have not agreed on a set of wise ideas. Many Americans concern themselves with the idea of money. Some concern themselves with the idea of the human race: with homo sapiens and our future in a unique universe.

In this battle of ideas one thing has become clearly apparent. The battle occurs on the field of worldwide media; the entire world is watching itself. From Madrid to Moscow, from New York to Nice, from Bangor to Beijing, we are all observing ourselves and our ideas via various media.

The human race is conducting this battle of ideas on a truly planetary scale for the first time. It is seeking a common planetary vision. This is no game. This intellectual media battle is deciding the future of humanity for decades to come.

Our challenge today is to engage seriously in this battle of ideas. This absolutely requires we each think deeply about the political ideas being presented on TV, Internet, radio, and print media.

A president is a point man for a nation’s ideas. We still largely consider presidents to be people of power: those able to amass financial fortunes and to literally lead us in military battle.

But, this is a dubious illusion. Money and military power are not the sole foundations for a nation. A nation must be based on its wise ideas, on a sound, functional philosophy.

For America to remain “great” all its citizens must absorb and foster the concept that ideas are the World War of our times. And that those ideas are being primarily fought planetarially on the battleground of media.

We all know in the deepest recesses of our minds that the human race can never define a rational future by the wastefully expensive conduct of military battle. That is a futile future. Wars may be necessary short-term expedients. But they are long-term disasters.

Clearly redefining what our ideas are, what America should be about, is the priority issue of our time. Ideas are the new politics. Brilliant ideas must combat the near-sighted nationalistic ideas being promoted on the world’s media stage by unimaginative, narrow-minded people

Ideas are infinitely more powerful than money. But paradoxically ideas must attract money to become seen on the world media stage. And new ideas being seen wordwide is vital. Those able to understand this point will help lead America in the right direction.

Those missing it will remain in the shadows unseen, unheard, unheeded. Lost far from the field of battle.

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