Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Start Real Conversations

Hat tip to another Eau Claire community member:

He's got a post right now highlighting the basic political playbook we can look forward to in Wisconsin this year. Money quote: both parties have agendas? Yes. But we have to understand that the Democrats fight for the rights of the poor, disenfranchised, and the underprivileged. The Republicans fight for corporate power, wealth, and the overprivileged.
It should be noted that a lot of folks are convinced that a system that favors individual gain over collective gain actually leads to eventual collective gain. That's my basic understanding of the Ayn Rand philosophy. A whole lot of people share that mindset. Unfortunately, the act of actually saying you want the collective society to improve is somehow too much to admit for a lot of people with this individualistic attitude. Does admitting that break the cycle?

I think, deep down, we live in compassionate communities, and we really do want to take care of each other on a basic level. This stretches across humanity. Look no further than the heroes in Japan right now, fighting to keep that nuclear reactor under control. These men and women face certain death, but there they are, working to do what they can protect their neighbors. I probably seem a bit like a Pollyanna here, but I think in our heart of hearts, we are compassionate and empathetic. The shame of all of this is the way we've been turned against each other with divide-and-conquer politics.

The only thing we need to succeed is the ear of our elected officials. That doesn't seem like too much to ask, does it? We will continue to make ourselves heard with the recall this spring. We will elect people that value our communities. We need folks in Madison who will find a way to hear us when we speak. Listen to our words: Wisconsin will be ours!