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Irresponsible generation?

August 19, 2016

We are in the final days leading to one of the most important political decisions that Americans will make this century, and commentators and candidates are, simply, irresponsible.

Let’s dispose, first, of the irresponsibility of both candidates.

Hillary is incapable of telling the truth, used her office to benefit her husband’s “charitable” foundation and demonstrated that, even as Secretary of State, she had bad judgment and is not suited to be an “administrator.”

The Donald is impulsive on principle and impulsively decided to run for President of the United States with little knowledge of political campaigns and without preparing to wage a campaign that would, ultimately, get out the vote. He assumed that running a country is like running a business and is too new at the game of public policy that he makes it up as he goes along.

Both HIllary and Trump are representative of a generation of Americans–the post World War II generation–who enjoyed the benefits of a world at peace, world leadership and economic prosperity. Yet, this generation did not do the hard work to understand forces in the world that wanted to destroy the United States, nor to prepare to sustain that world leadership.

That is evident in a common use of the world “dictator” to describe Saddam Hussein, Vladimir Putin, Bashar al-Assad or Robert Mugabe and any or all the authoritarian leaders that populate Third World countries and now post-Soviet Russia.

Misuse of words is something that occurs when knowledge and understanding are corrupted. Confucius saw that in 6th Century China when he called for the “rectification of names.” When we use the word “dictator” to describe authoritarians we ignore that this word is a pejorative used to describe persons who do not govern by democratic rules.

But, the more accurate word to describe how most nations are governed is “authoritarian.”  The opposite, more dangerous form of authoritarian rule, is not “dictator” but “totalitarian.”

Soviet Russia was a totalitarian regime. Fidel Castro is a totalitarian ruler, the current and immediate past Presidents of Venezuela were totalitarians leaders and most important, the supreme leader of Iran, Sayyed Ali Khamenei, is a totalitarian.

Totalitarian describes a leader with a political ideology or religion that seeks to replace normal life or reality with something better that is solely made up and willed to be true. Marxism, Leninism, Communism, Socialism, Nazism,  Fascism and Islamic radicalism are totalitarian ideologies.

Making distinctions, or not making them, affects public policy.

President Obama, himself trained in totalitarian Marxism, has made overtures to Fidel Castro and Ali Khamenei that are not in the national interest of the United States. He does that because he sympathizes with those regimes.  Our irresponsible generation twice failed to understand the character of this young community organizer from Chicago and a disastrous course of the United States is now set for at least a generation.

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