The People’s Intention Must Change For New Leaders to Emerge

The People’s Intention Must Change For New Leaders to Emerge

 Part 4 from … “Have We Chosen the Wrong Type of People to Govern Ourselves?” 

Uplifting America Series  by Michael Krajovic 

          In the previous three articles, several points were made to try to get others to think more about the type of people they elect to public office.  Countries around the world are beginning to go through a period of great transition.  Real and honest leadership is needed to lead humanity beyond the primitive behaviors and social programs it has been stuck with for decades.  It is time for America to step up if it is going to lead the world into a new era of human advancement with greater peace and prosperity for all of the world’s people in a sustainable way that supports all life on the planet for countless future generations. 

        For society to change course, we must be clearer on the type of persons we consider to be a successful government leader.  We could look to the past for guidance because there have been politicians who are considered to have served well.   Of course, this all depends upon how “served well” is defined.  This is an important point because just as society has been looking towards the wrong type of people for leadership, their expectations and definitions of successful leadership are just as off target.  Too often success in political leadership is measured by the ability to bring “the bacon back home.”  Many politicians believe their job is to financially support their constituents by using their influence to shift public dollars into their districts.  It has been the most effective way for incumbents to stay in office.  As long as they get their picture in the paper passing out checks or at ground breaking and ribbon cutting ceremonies, the constituents believe that they are doing their job.  And the professional politician truly believes that he or she is doing their job. After all with billions and trillions of dollars to decide how to divide up, it is only fair that some of those dollars are brought back home to benefit local taxpayers.

             Unfortunately this expectation of constituents to expect money back for local, high profile projects, distract politicians from addressing the very real and serious problems that threaten the entire society.  As they fight over which political party gets to steer the ship, the idea of compromise and leadership has been “dumbed down” to just getting a piece of government’s budget pie to bring home to the local constituents, and to benefit the bottom line of their financial contributors.   This dominates the culture in state and federal government because it is their constituents’ and supporters’ expectations.  When politicians are being publicly commended and buildings and highways are being named after them, it is easy to understand how they can believe they are doing the right thing.  More quietly, regulatory or contract favors for private corporations go publicly unnoticed, but the financial contributions pile as rewards for making the “right” business decisions.  As a result the core systemic problems based on entrenched ideologies, institutionalized bureaucracies, special interests and corporate influence, go unaddressed.  It is like rearranging the chairs on the Titanic.  It will keep you busy, but it won’t prevent the impending disaster where everyone loses, dramatically going down with the ship.  And judging from their actions, our politicians and their constituents don’t even realize that they are on the same ship together.  

         I have personally experienced the local expectation for politicians to “bring home the bacon” coming from an area that can best be described politically as being “libertarian democratic socialists.”  While this political oxymoron may sound quite strange, I feel it is quite common.  The difference in political philosophy depends upon the level of government.  For many local public officials, they act as ultra conservatives or libertarians, who run and stay in office on the platform of promising to never raise local taxes.  Whether it is a city, county or township, they won’t raise taxes to invest in their own community.   But when it comes from getting handouts from either the state or federal government, they become ultra liberal supporting every social grant program their state and federal representatives can bring to their towns.  They elect people to state and federal government who will every once in a while get them “free” grant monies.  Everyone is trying to use government to benefit themselves.  Whether it is a multinational corporation or a constituent, the primary motivating force in the current election process is self interests.  Very few are truly working to use government to serve others or to pull collective resources to solve societal problems.  Very few are willing to make sacrifices for the collective good.  And very few of this very few, are engaged in redefining government’s purpose to address the systemic problems.  For example, no one is working on how government can help others, without creating permanent dependency.  Help when needed needs to be provided efficiently and in a way that leads to self empowerment, not ongoing dependency on public assistance.  Even those that want to cut national government programs will only pass the problem on to the states and local communities.  The problems will not be addressed, but only be passed down to someone else to solve.  A primary reason why the federal government has grown so large is because local and state governments have failed to take care of their own needs, passing the problem on to the federal government.  This seesaw of back and forth between the levels of government does little to address the core systemic challenges facing society which must be addressed by considering the common interests with serious and meaningful deliberation.  At the current elementary level of cultural understanding, society needs to redefine what “common interests” means, something that sadly has been forgotten.

             At the core of the problem lies the will of the average voter who has given away their power to those that tell them what they want to hear rather than what they need to hear.  This is true for all levels of government.  Leaders who are willing to stand up and take on serious issues have become a rarity.  Leaders with the combination of courage and humility with a deep desire to serve and improve life for all human beings are rare.  It is almost impossible for them to get elected to office.  Thus, avoiding controversy, learning to speak without saying anything substantial or making commitments to keep people confused, has become the political norm of the day.  Politics has become the art of speaking without saying anything or convincing others that the hidden self interests of the politician and their financial backers are in the self interests of the people.

             The type of people in office is only the symptom of a much deeper problem.  The crisis in electing the right people to office is a crisis of the will of the people. It is a crisis of intention.  Society has lost its sense of purpose.  People have lost their sense of community.  They have lost their sense of government which was once a place to come together to address common interests rather than pursue self interests. They do not know how to blend individuality and its freedoms together with unity and acting for the common good.  They have forgotten that freedom and rugged individualism came with a responsibility to others, through a pledge of allegiance to the republic with liberty and justice for all.  And true justice comes from creating a just society, not from seeking justice after an offense.  Without a higher intention of what the purpose of living together is meant achieve, civil society will fail, as it is now beginning.

           We must revisit our common goals and the principles by which we want to live our lives and operate our government.  Government after all is simply a process that we use to operate our society.  Over 200 year ago, America was a new process of government that broke from the tradition of people being governed by a select few like the kings and queens of Europe.  It was formed as the government of the governed, or for people to govern themselves.   Right now as a government and as a people, America, the leader of the free world, is struggling, as are many other democratic governments.  If we are not clear as a people on the type of society that we want to create in any country, then we will be unclear on the type of leaders we seek.  We will continue to flounder, pulling ourselves apart, regardless of who we elect to operate our government.  How our government runs is a reflection on the collective intention of the people.  What we intend to create is a reflection on our values, our beliefs, our consciousness or in other words, our level of spirituality.  Government is the physical manifestation of our spirituality.  It determines how we care for our children, our elderly and our poor.  It determines how we resolve conflicts, what laws we pass, how we divide up resources, how we care for the environment, etc.  All of this is a demonstration of how our beliefs allow us to see or not see each other as fellow human beings. 

          This series of four articles started with the idea of how our beliefs are formed from our experiences.  It is time for us as a society to examine our past experiences and determine if this is type of life in our country and around the world that we want to create.  After all it is our collective thoughts, ideas and intentions that have created the current condition of the world.  In it, there are two golden rules, the one we are using now where gold (money) rules, and the one taught by our religions, that we have forgotten.  Our society and governments and our individual lives are now mostly influenced and controlled by our pursuit of money, (gold) profit.  If this is our collective intention, to compete for more gold and power, then we will continue to create more of the same and compete against each other to liquidate the world’s resources to where we will eventually consume ourselves as a species out of existence, if we don’t destroy ourselves sooner with our misuse of technology as the divisions between the Haves and Have Nots increases human desperation and conflict.  We as divine beings of human free will must decide which Golden Rule we will follow as a society.  This will determine the type of persons we choose to serve as our representatives in our own government.  Our collective intention, and the attention we give it through our thoughts, words and actions will determine our future.  Everything, everything hinges on this one decision.

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