Open Letter to the People of the United States: A Call for Unity


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Our Goal: To End Divisiveness by Disempowering Those Who Seek to Divide

Two-hundred and forty-four years ago, the founders of this nation decided that a break from England was necessary for the good of the people in the colonies that would become the United States of America. This break was plausible not only due to the cultural differences in priorities between the colonies and England, but also due to geography.

Today, many in the US perceive growing escalation of differences in culture between evidently divergent if not opposite poles of the political spectrum. Unlike the founders of this country, we do not have the convenience of distance to allow the resolution of differences by fission, and many of those divisions are artificial, or exaggerated, amplified by those who benefit from creating them.

This letter, therefore, is being addressed to the entire population of the United States of America as an appeal toward contributing together toward a future in which we can all see – and solve – the real problem. The real problem is that current differences believed by many to make us fundamentally incompatible with each other are in fact the result of manipulations and are made prominent precisely because they are most divisive. We are being alienated from one another. Those making the divisive issues so prominent are individuals – enemies, foreign and domestic – with interests served by the fractionation of the peoples of the United States against each other. Knowledge of how these individuals have positioned and structured power dynamics among the tools of governance and agents of our economy renders insight into the grave harms being visited upon the people of the United States daily. The same knowledge defines the solutions necessary to orient our country on paths toward healing, with mutual support in valued relationships with individuals who may be outside of what we are told are our immediate cultural comfort zones.

Our Greatest Common Goal

Our greatest possible common goal is to produce a viable society in which the needs of the individuals of a group are in balance with the interests of the group.

This is particularly important, so we repeat it. Please notice carefully how this is worded:

Our greatest possible common goal is to produce a viable society in which the needs of the individuals of a group are in balance with the interests of the group.

We are not saying that the greatest common goal is to put the needs of the many ahead of the needs of the few, or vice versawe seek to promote awareness of the importance of individual wellness inherent to group wellness, in order to resist the polarizing effects of the influences of those who could benefit from fractionation of our collective psyche. Like a family unit, trying to heal, who are beset upon by polarizing family members or divorce lawyers, the people of the United States are plagued by influences who seek to maintain and promote their own positions of influence and power. We see these influences are the greatest threat to our domestic peace and security.

What We Should Start Doing

Our priority message is not one of which activities we should not undertake; they are, instead, prescriptions for activities that we consider necessary for national health and wellness.

First, we collectively must recognize that party politics has, throughout the history of nations, placed party priorities ahead of the well-being of the nations in which the parties emerge. Political parties serve and preserve themselves.

As a direct result of the US Supreme Court’s landmark Citizens United ruling in 2010 which overturned restrictions on independent expenditures from corporations and labor unions, corporations can spend unlimited funds on super political action committees (PACs). While PACs cannot contribute directly to a politician or political party, they can campaign directly for or against candidates. This financial shell game means that major shareholders and owners of corporations can donate heavily to PACs, which can then hand the funds over to political parties. This set-up inevitably endows power and influence to those who amass wealth in a manner that is disproportionately far beyond the power and influence of their fellow citizens.

As currently structured, the political system is inherently based on the sustained illusions that the belief systems of individual party members are in fact diametrically opposed to those of the opposing party. Individual citizens instinctively know that they themselves are not, and collectively are not, the most powerful influencers of their party’s platforms.

Currently, in the US, those who sustain these illusions work continuously to keep the people of the United States divided against themselves using divisive proxy issues to maintain the current power structure to serve the immediate and direct interests of any corporations affiliated with the party and major donors. The perpetuation of false dichotomies are derived from the principle stated by Patrick Buchanan who, as a speech writer, advised President Richard M. Nixon’s campaign to provoke discord on issues such as race to divide the public so the party could take the bigger half. Both parties make use of expensive and extensive polling to identify the most divisive issues to define their respective platforms. This practice is now literally tearing the people of the United States apart.

The US public should recognize the employment of divisive proxy issues being routinely conducted in service of the major shareholders of each party. These issues hack our evolutionary legacy of ingroup/outgroup psychology, feeding a false certainty of our “core beliefs”, which we then falsely marry to our sense of personal identity. In reality we are constantly and chronically manipulated to work in service of the major shareholders of our respective parties.

The parties stand up temporary “rulers” who now understand themselves as such, as opposed to providing representatives of the people acting as “servants” of the interests of all of the citizens of the United States.

The Hegelian Dialectic

In the constant emotional battery and manipulations setting the people of the United States against each other, it is difficult to recognize the establishment of relationships known as the Hegelian dialectic, in which those the most powerful, if abusive, are seen by the oppressed as being of lower moral virtue than the oppressed, and, vice versa, leading to a degradation of the relationship until the oppressed become sufficiently aware that by serving the oppressor, they themselves can maintain an illusion of moral superiority. Whilst this is a potentially stable relationship, it also means (to Hegel) that neither the oppressor nor the oppressed are fully conscious of the influences upon their actions and decisions until the oppressed rises above the master in virtue by continuing in servitude and providing services and labor well beyond the realization of the disparity in equanimity of the relationship. In the current chronically coapted two-party system, members of neither party can ever truly become enlightened and learn of even their own humanity; the master/slave dialectic is, instead, a Sisyphean effort with massive amounts of wealth wasted on determining who, for a short time, will become the ineffectual and abusive master, and who, during that time, will plot for the next transfer of “power”.

If freedom of human beings from covert manipulations and misdirection is a general good, then we have sufficient motivation toward intrinsic good to move in the direction of awareness and change. There are additional intrinsic goods, such as stability, that may be more immediately attractive, however, and thus we also recommend awareness that the servitude provided to the party obtained under manipulative false pretenses is leading to the rending of the fabric of our society, straining the United States socially to its breaking point. This servitude also serves the interests of our enemies, whether we know (and agree) who they are, or not.

Empathy is Required for Reconciliation

What steps can be undertaken to reduce the influence of these aberrations of history who have a stranglehold on our collective and national psyche?

  1. A first necessary step in reconciliation and healing of any relationship is a shared desire. Rising above the foray we recall the manipulations and exaggerations of the issues that are keeping us artificially apart while simultaneously making us unwitting agents of the enemies of the United States. We do not advocate nationalism; we merely recognize that as a major superpower, a healthy United States is part of a healthier world.
  2. Understanding the reasoning (however flawed) behind the alternative viewpoints to which we are opposed is also required, even if we cannot personally adopt a particular position on any given divisive issue. Through empathy we learn to see, address and engage with the full person, not the dehumanizing caricature of those persons the divisive forces chronically thrust upon us.
  3. Empathy also allows apparent opponents to begin to be able to see the pieces of the puzzle left out by their own respective parties’ manipulative narratives, and people can then begin to see the problems that plague society from a common/shared point of view.
  4. Those who choose to remain aligned with their parties should see themselves as emissaries and ambassadors of their party and open dialogs with others beginning with these common and shared points of view.
  5. Moderates from all parties should come together – physically, face-to-face, at the local, state and national level – and engage with each other not as a new political party per se but instead in the role as well-placed proponents of the search for common solutions to our nations’ problems.
  6. We need a full accounting of costs and benefits of all public health measures. The self-inflicted injuries from our nation’s response to COVID19 are the result of policies and politicians exaggerating- or minimizing- the severity of the threat posed by the circulation of SARS-CoV-2, some fixated on a single “savior” solution, others opposed to the same solution, with only one certainty: The outcome of the politicization of the issue will determine whether certain corporations will enjoy trillions of dollars of profits, while the US economy suffers permanent and long-lasting damage to the tune of hundreds of billions of dollars.
  7. We must learn to Count Using All of Our Fingers. To find ways to balance the interests of the individuals in the American family with the interests of the entire population, we must begin to consider factors and consequences in a manner consistent with awareness and compassion at five levels: the influence of policies upon (a) Individual/Family unit; (b) State populations; (c) the National population; (d) Regional populations, and (e) the World population.
  8. If party politics are to survive and become healthy, all members of any political party must see themselves as agents of change toward reforming their party such that the party works to seek a balance between the interest of the party and the interests of the (a) Individual/Family unit; (b) State populations; (c) the National population; (d) Regional populations, and (e) the World population.
  9. Professionals who choose to serve a particular political party are in fact serving the major shareholders of their party, and not the interests of the people, and they will soon, or will already have found themselves unable to influence their respective party to the end of producing a viable society. Under these conditions, given the value and ideals of democracy, their continued support of the party cannot be justified. To change this, they must assert a meta-party political realm in which the five levels of concern are given overt consideration on each party’s position on each issue, even if they strike against the grain of the party’s major shareholders.
  10. By seeing the full picture of the full set of factors we have outlined, people in different parties can begin to see the factors undermining their relationships with their neighbors and loved ones. Those who are wise will understand that this awakened realization will tend to lead naturally to anger and outrage as the liability for the distortions and harms in individuals’ lives become apparent. The energy of this response must be channeled away from destructive responses toward productive solutions.

We therefore urge unity across the US against these divisive influences, and encourage every American to channel their energy directly into a reform movement, with the following aims:

  1. Minimize corporate influence in politics.
  2. End Regulatory Capture. Reduce the influence of the corporations on state agencies to zero.
  3. Create a new national ethos that values one’s ability to create jobs more than one’s ability to procure and sequester personal wealth, and one’s ability to work with people from different walks of life over one’s ability to perpetuate any single historical culture.
  4. Decentralize and restructure public health infrastructure to be 100% apolitical.
  5. Return the medical profession to work under a model of public good and end – forever – the commoditization of health.
  6. Find ways to energize our economy using regional blends of cleaner energy.
  7. Identify the means to produce jobs with meaning.
  8. Extract pollutants from ourselves, our way of life and the ecosystem.

Our collective well-being depends on balance, steady and consistent work and progress towards building processes that can bring out homeostasis in the interplay between people, corporations, government and our shared economy.

Most fundamentally, if we are to the end the cycle of manipulation and servitude of interests of corporatist regimes, we must learn ways to identify positions and policies that truly balance the interest of the individuals in this large family with the interest of the family itself without pitting the individual against the many, or vice versa. Any person, policy or program that pits the interests of the individual against the interests of the many manifests alienation and disenfranchisement of the many against itself, a paradox that can be resolved only by engendering programs of balance, kindness, and wisdom.

James Lyons-Weiler, Allison Park, PA, 1/17/2021

This article first appeared on jameslyonsweiler.com.

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