Some news folks are analyzing the Kavanaugh/Ford hearing and its intensity as a single isolated event in politics. Some are linking it to the broader phenomenon of Trump era republicans. But It is so much more.
There has been a swift and distinct change in American politics, although it can be claimed that the grand plan for the change was laid out long ago.
Populism and nationalism and America First… These are nothing more than a collection of slogans that are used to manipulate the people. If society continues along this path, globalization will still continue. But rather than being a coalition of nations developing and embracing human rights along with a growing economy, we are turning towards a coalition of strong authoritarian leaders with a citizenry that are little more than modern day serfs.
The great American experiment and our ideals of freedom and equality became a light to the world. Even with all of our flaws and injustices America is where so many have dreamed of coming. Many world nations have successfully adopted our values of freedom and equality. But there is a shift happening.
For 230 years America had depended upon our constitution and the separation of powers with checks and balances to help keep us on the path of freedom and keep authoritarians from gaining and holding power in government. Now we have seen our institutions degraded. The rule of law is being challenged at the highest levels. Every one of the 3 branches of government has been corrupted. Only one more justice on the Supreme Court is needed to secure the rise of an authoritarian leader.
Of course this has been developing over a long period, decades. The wealthy and powerful have become masterful manipulators and peddlers of propaganda. They laid out a rough draft for a long game to transform the government to be more favorable to business. In just a few decades we have flat lined middle class income and expanded the wealth of the 1% to astronomical levels. The powerful, individuals, corporations and special interest groups, have used their wealth to influence government to allow them to increase profits with no regard for people or environment.
Without Trump we would still be on this path to exalt the wealthy to even higher levels. But the unstable genius of Trump is that he is so outrageous that he has accelerated the process. Trump has longingly set his sights on the power and control enjoyed by authoritarians around the world. Trump does not have the vision to see past his regime, but now that the light has been turned on for them, it will be easy for other power mongers to take the next step and join forces with other authoritarians to insure that no one is a threat to them.
This is one scenario in the realm of possibilities. The stage is set for this scenario. Can we change direction? Can we reach out to each other and be reminded of the strength of our common ideals and the brilliance in the structure of our government? If we focus on our differences, if we fret over freedoms that one thinks the other should not have, and allow that to overpower our common values, we will lose all.
But… people are suffering. Too many live pay check to pay check. Too many cannot make the pay check last. This is why I see the New Deal as a restorative. We absolutely must rebuild our infrastructure to withstand our new climate. We must provide homes and medical care to our citizens. There is enough work to employ everyone with a bit of education and training.
These times are too critical. The flash points are too volatile. We cannot survive a gradual change. We need a radical new idea. A New Deal for the 21st Century.