Saturday, March 13, 2010

Coffee House Collectivists VS Tea Party Individualists, and the Middle Ground

Coffee vs. Tea: A political movement is brewing
Washington (CNN) -- Is the Coffee Party on the scale of the Tea Party movement? Saturday is the first big test in attempting to answer that question.

Leaders of the fledgling movement say they plan to hold 350 to 400 events at coffeehouses across the country. While the Coffee Party has become an instant hit online, gauging the success of Saturday's coast-to-coast events could be an indicator of the group's strength.

"We need to wake up and work hard to get our government to represent us," says Annabel Park, the movement's founder.


Park, who worked as a volunteer for then-Sen. Barack Obama's presidential campaign and Democratic Sen. Jim Webb of Virginia's 2006 campaign, says the Coffee Party is not aligned with any party. She calls the two-party system out of date.

"It encourages people to think of politics as a kind of game, like a football game, in which there are two sides, and it's a zero sum situation. If one person wins, the other person loses. That's really not a healthy way to conduct collective decision-making. That's not a democracy."

Park said the bitter battle over health care is an example of how government is not working.

"We feel like the health care debate showed not only that we are a very divided country, but there's something really wrong with our political process. We kind of got to see the innards of the political process and realize there's something very broken. I think that's what we're responding to." [...]

What "health care debate" is she talking about? One side dictating to the rest of us, is not a "debate".

The two party system is out of date? Really? What do we replace it with? Seriously?

When I've talked to Leftists about this, the answer I usually get is that we need a one-party state, in order to "avoid divisiveness and conflict, to make sure that we all agree. It's VERY IMPORTANT that we ALL AGREE".

That's been tried before. It's called totalitarianism. Or fascism. Nazism. Communism. Whatever the name, it's absolute power, corrupting absolutely.

A Multi-party system is messy and contentious, to be sure. But adversarial, multi-party democracy is the only way prevent absolute power, and to fight the corruption that always goes along with wielding power. It's not perfect, but it beats the alternatives.

In my experience, when collectivists talk about "collective decision making", that means agreeing with them. Period. When they say we have to avoid having winners and losers, they mean we should have only one party so there is no "opposition", no competition in the market place of ideas.

Collectivists are always saying "we need more democracy". That's because a 100% pure democracy is the same as mob-rule. That can sweep the collectivists to power, but pure democracies always destroy themselves, only to be replaced with some sort of totalitarian system. That's fine with many collectivists, because they don't want to compete; a totalitarian system that does what they want, is what they want.

The only thing wrong with our political process is, that it's not being respected.

The US Constitution is there to limit the powers of Government, so that no one political party can trample all others; to ensure that there is a middle ground on which we can meet, and stand and govern from. We need to respect that middle ground.

Something about our system is "broken"? Well, yeah; Our political system can't "work" if it's not followed. Duh. Unfortunately, we have politicians in our system who are deliberately working to break it, so they can then replace it with something else; yet another power grab, mob rule degenerating into totalitarianism, as history attempts to repeat itself. Same old story. We've managed to avoid that for over 200 years. Are we going to give in to it now?

When we no longer respect the Constitution and it's roll in our government, then our Republic cannot last. Will we only appreciate it when it's gone?

Our country has always had both collectivist and individualist traditions. I don't say that we need to discard one for the other; we can keep having both! We just need to preserve the middle ground on which we can all stand. We can do that by respecting and following the US Constitution, which will continue to serve us well, if only we let it. If we actively support it and not allow it to be subverted. It's ours to hold or lose. Use it, or lose it.

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