TED Conversations

Roger Farinha

Founder, New American Spring

This conversation is closed.

Is the United States ripe for a new populist awakening?

The Tea Party, The Coffee Party, Occupy Wall Street: Our united states is evidencing (presently amorphous) populist convulsions--a seeming awakening of the people to the need to reclaim the reigns of democratic power. What might a mature populist awakening look like?


Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.

  • thumb

    Gail . 50+

    • +1
    Nov 15 2012: The riff between the two predominant political views (progressive conservatives v. progressive liberals) is too great at present. There is too much disrespect and neither side is a majority.

    Wait until the economy fails. Then people can come together in the name of survival, if they are able to set aside their ideological blinders.

    My preferred populist awakening is very different from any mainstream idea.
    • thumb
      Nov 15 2012: Gee I hope we don't have to wait for economic collapse to get there, but you are right-- this can be the motivator. In fact, all these present populist stirrings are related to our economic strife. But I am calling for us to wise up and preempt such an eventuality. What do you think of this message of mine?

      • thumb
        Nov 16 2012: I tend to agree with your web site, but I don’t think that you have taken it far enough.

        During Occupy, I tried to bring Occupiers and Tea Partiers together because they ARE working on the same problem. The problem I faced was lack of functional education combined with lack of willingness to educate themselves or trust one another.

        I can tell you the day that America was set up for the economic collapse of 2008 (and the Great Depression and other great tragedies) and our current fiscal/social/political woes. I can give you a plethora of documentary evidence for my view. Knowing about these documents, I know how to take back America. The problem was that no one was willing to listen.

        The conservative progressive theocrats terrify the liberal progressive extremists and vice versa. These two groups will never come together. Their fear prevents it. Their fear is understandable.

        Americans have been LIED TO about their own history. Because of this, they do not know that the two sides are vehemently opposed to the only rational solution that they both really want.

        Christians have been LIED TO about church history and the teachings of Jesus. Because of this, they do not know that Christianity and a proper Constitutional Republic are not mutually exclusive.

        Americans think that they are educated, and they do not know that they are (again) provably indoctrinated. This leaves them unable to think rationally and leaves them distrustful of actual documentation that disturbs their entrenched worldviews. Fear interferes.

        George Orwell’s dystopia, as outline in “1984” is upon us. The problem must be addressed from this level. How would you suggest that we do that? How many Americans are willing to admit that they have been programmed to fear rational thought, and they do not even know what rational thought looks like.

        Americans have been TAUGHT to confuse emotions with thought, thus they are slaves to their fears.
        • thumb
          Nov 16 2012: Shrinking government and education, the key is to change the culture from one of dependency on the government.

          Is it likely to happen? Nope

          Is it going to be a Dystopia or Mad Max?
        • thumb
          Nov 16 2012: The answer to getting Americans on the right page is not so much research and education in the beginning, as it is setting the example with a movement of the rational remnant, as it were. This is why I title my piece "a call to independent mobilization." You can say this is similar to what is needed in the Arab world too-- the moderate middle should get a movement going, so that everyone can see that there is an option to the extreme. Once people see and feel and touch a rational middle, then they can begin to open their minds to the rational content behind the movement.
        • thumb
          Nov 16 2012: Can you point to an example of this?
      • thumb
        Nov 16 2012: I don't see the path and you haven't yet articulated it. I think that you underestimate the power of the pulpit and Fox news - both of which have become tyrannical hate organizations in the last 20 years. (After many conversations with them, I can tell you that they really do not know how hateful and cruel they have become)

        You also underestimate the power of diseducation, where people have no idea how an effective government is supposed to work. And you can't articulate that until you understand basic economics that drive our politics and every aspect of our culture, and then link them together.

        Your suggestion that the moderate middle should mobilize is just as threatening to me as mobilization of the right or left wingnuts. The moderate middle are no more rational than the two extremes. Their views are just different but their core drive is the same.

        I'll repeat, "Americans have been TAUGHT to confuse emotions with thought, thus they are slaves to their fears." Few Americans have ever thought a rational thought.

        Perhaps if you were to offer a rational vision to a solution, you could gain followers, but I am not going to work against my own interests by being a sheeple to another organization that does not have a clue as to how to fix what is broken.

        Don't mean to sound mean here, but I don't know how to answer your post without addressing the point that what you call rational and what I call rational are two very different things. So please don't take offense, OK? :-)

Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.