Posts Tagged '1%'

To Increase Social Cooperation Speak to the Best Values of the 99%

I just read an interesting article regarding how to create an Empathic (i.e., Cooperative) Civilization.

How will the 99% Deal with the World’s 70 Million Psychopaths?

A lot of the world’s misery can be traced to people who lack the wiring for empathy. What can we do to contain the damage they cause?

July 26  Joe Brewer

This article suggests (not too surprisingly) that the 1% who control World power structures, mostly for their own benefit, are highly non-emphathic.   That is, the real 1% are not simply the richest 1%, but rather the most powerful non-empaths.  Not all wealthy people are non-empathic.  But our economic system is especially tuned to reward non-empaths in their struggle to the top.   In addition, our legal and regulatory structures favor the creation of extremely powerful corporations who by the predominant definition of “business” and “competition” are at the top of the heap of non-empathic “individuals.”  (Fortunately many corporations are socially responsible.  However, by their nature, corporations are expected to make a profit for shareholders and to obey the law, rather than to create the greatest good for all.)

We knew all of this of course, but the analysis in this article makes the situation clearer.    The author also makes good suggestions on what to do.  But all of his suggestions require the 99% who are empathic to take back control of society (that is, for the ‘meek’ to inherit the Earth).

For me a key question is – how do we break the unholy connection between the powerful non-empaths and the millions of ordinary ‘conservative voters’ who admire  powerful non-empaths and swallow their messages?   The non-empaths are able to put their messages into frames that conservative voters resonate with, even though most of those voters are actually empathic.

Some of best ideas that I’ve seen about how to counter this are in Lakoff’s new book:  The Little Blue Book:  The Essential Guide to Thinking and Talking Democratic.  Lakoff’s premis is not that progressives must take over the “rulership” of the country from conservatives — who currently worship the private sector and denigrate the public sector.   But rather that progressives must stop using the frames developed by the 1% to gain the admiration and votes of conservative and independent voters.  Progressives must instead use frames that truly resonate with the empathic and democratic nature of all people among the 99%.   Our only way forward is to build true democratic partnership between progressives and conservatives to shape a better society that is good for all, rather than one that mainly benefits the 1%.

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Radical Middle

True, sustainable social transformation will never occur by one side, party, perspective defeating and dominating the others.

Sustainable social transformation will occur when people and groups with different perspectives learn to listen to each other and dialogue.

Dialogue is not about compromise that leads to the mediocre middle.

It is about constructively engaging with the “other” to come up with truly better solutions.  That is not mediocrity.  It is radical and creative.

Arriving at better solutions includes a creative process of agreeing on reasonable solutions, giving those solutions a legitimate chance, and evaluating the effects based on evidence that can be accepted by a majority of both sides.

A solution with a reasonable chance of success that will be supported by a significant majority of the population is always going to be better than a solution bitterly opposed by significant factions.  And a widely accepted solution will always be better than a situation of stalemate where no meaningful solutions can ever be given enough of a chance to succeed.

If we’re all heading for the precipice together, then we need to take action together; and that means that we have to figure out a way to agree very, very soon.

In my case, I believe especially strongly in progressive ideas and solutions.   On the other hand, there are conservative thinkers whom I respect; and I believe that conservative ideas and solutions have value and need to be seriously considered in coming up with any solution.

The Whole is greater than the sum of the parts.

However, I only accept ideas and solutions that I feel have been formulated to help all of us, and not just to benefit 50%, 10%, or 1%.

I am committed to do all I can to rid our society of anti-democratic rhetoric and unrestricted funding of media manipulations and outright lies.   So I look for progressives, conservatives, and any others who are equally committed to that goal.  It is definitely a goal that can be supported by all who love our whole community.

Changing the way elections and media influence are funded is critical.  Yet, even when that happens, we will still need to learn how to constructively think and make decisions together.   Making progress on one front will support progress on the other.


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