Everybody should win something
By Dr. Larry Fedewa (February 10, 2019)
The soaring rhetoric with which President Donald J. Trump concluded his 2019 State of the Union address was totally unexpected, but as uplifting in its own way as that of Ronald Reagan and John F. Kennedy. And we need to be lifted up – from the pettiness and willful blindness which have characterized much of our political discourse as our loyalties and pronouncements have descended into a cauldron of partisan gamesmanship.
As author John Daly observed on “The Dr. Larry Show” last week, the American public has taken to looking at politics as a competitive sport where there must be winners and losers. This perspective has been both led and followed by the news media. Smaller and ever smaller incidents, actions and words are being analyzed in terms of who won and who lost. Fox News has even scheduled an end-of-week quiz every Friday night called “Winners and Losers”.
Games have winning as the goal of the exercise. The goal of American politics is not winning, it is compromise. Politics is part of a larger process called governing. Governing well requires the more elusive quality of wisdom. To achieve wise laws and regulations which serve our citizens well and justly, the various parties in our system of government bring each their own perspectives into the search. Negotiations should include all the goals put forth by the parties, each to be considered carefully. Thus new solutions will be created to meet as many of the goals sought by all sides as is possible. The final product is a law which should therefore serve the people more inclusively and wisely for having been subjected to this type of analysis and debate.
To introduce a “winner take all” mentality into this process is to reduce it to a pure display of power. The goal is thus changed from a wise solution based on what is best for all the people — in other words, a wise and creative compromise. The entire framework of the government system devised by America’s Founders and written into the Constitution is based on a distribution of power and the resulting compromises. To proceed otherwise is to defeat the Constitution itself — which is, of course, a stated goal of the Far Left today.
These people lust for the power to dictate the behavior of all the rest of us. The distributed power model of the Constitution stands in the way. Therefore they campaign to get rid of the Constitution and leave the field inevitably to the likes of Hitler, Stalin, and Maduro.
The Constitution says in effect, “Everybody wins a lot – and everybody loses a little”. That is still a better idea than “winner take all”! The Constitution, like President Trump, calls us to greatness, to the wisdom of compromise.
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