traditional thought with a contemporary twist
Election Fallout: An Old Familer Tune
Published on January 21, 2017 By Joan of Arc In Current Events

The antics of the last few months have caused this relic to come out of hiding.  The deep distrust between political parties and vast difference of opinion are NOT new---consider the following.

Boiling frog. The boiling frog is an anecdote describing a frog slowly being boiled alive. The premise is that if a frog is put suddenly into boiling water, it will jump out, but if the frog is put in cold water which is then brought to a boil slowly, it will not perceive the danger and will be cooked to death.

Perhaps a fresher.  The following is an excerpt from Chapter 1 of Teaching American History


Occasionally political parties in democratic regimes become deeply and bitterly opposed to each other because the parties are convinced that their opponents threaten to abandon the country’s most fundamental principles.

When political parties have these extreme differences, how can civil war be avoided? Can we reasonably expect those in power before the elections peacefully to surrender their offices to opponents who they know will pursue policies that are not only unwise or unjust but also wholly destructive of the very ends of the political community? Should the government of the day respect the election results, and quietly hand over power to such traitors? Or, if it is the challenging party that has lost the election, should it be content to leave peacefully in office people who are not just partisan opponents with disagreeable policies, but dangerous enemies of the country who do not deserve to be considered as legitimate governing officials? And what if the election result was very close, and perhaps also included (as is generally the way with close elections) some very contestable counting of the votes? Why should either a governing or a challenging party accept an unfavorable election outcome determined by a few doubtfully legitimate vote counts, when such important principles are at stake?

The first ever peaceful transition of power after bitterly contested popular elections fought by principled partisans occurred in America, in the “Revolution of 1800,” after elections that gave the Republican party led by Thomas Jefferson control over both the presidency and congress. Both the Republicans and their opponents, the Federalist party, believed that the fundamental principles of democracy were at stake in the conflict between the two parties.

Today it is widely recognized that the political experience of the United States in the 1770s and 1780s– the winning of independence, the writing of constitutions in each of the new states, and the establishment of the new federal Constitution of 1787– provides useful lessons about constructing liberal democracies. It is less widely recognized but no less true that the American political experience of the 1790s offers useful lessons about setting democracy into motion by developing a publicly respectable role for modern political parties. Without this, democracy is incomplete. The American republic was the first “new nation” and the first “emerging democracy” in the modern world. Its experiences resemble those of later-emerging democracies. The electoral Revolution of 1800 shows how even political parties that deeply distrust each other’s character and policies can nevertheless accept the outcome of an election that replaces one of these parties by the other. This American experience is the first example of a peaceful liberal democratic transfer of political power. Even if studying that experience cannot supply solutions that can be directly applied to later experiences in other times and places, it does tell us much about the kinds of problems that citizens and politicians must expect to have to deal with in contested and divisive transfers. We can also learn much about the kinds of principles that can be at stake in democratic partisan conflicts.


Here are my points -

The popular belief that the horrendous antics surrounding the 2016 Presidential Election including the lack of acceptance of the winning candidate are the result of the unprecedented circumstances of this election or the candidates is just plain ignorant.  The commitment to the peaceful transition of power is essential to our survival as a county and those state threatening like spoiled children to disconnect had better think again.  

History shows us that all of the great nations of the world have never lived much more than 200 years, and there has been sequential stages in every case. 

The first stage moves from bondage to spiritual faith
The second from spiritual faith to great courage.
The third stage moves from great courage to liberty.
The fourth stage moves from liberty to abundance
The fifth stage moves from abundance to selfishness
The sixth stage moves from selfishness to complacency.
The seventh stage moves from complacency to apathy
The eighth stage moves from apathy to moral decay
The ninth stage moves from moral decay to dependence.
And the tenth and last stage moves from dependence to bondage

Americans Wake up!  It was just 250 years ago our government was born.  If we think civil war can't happen here, we have become like the frog acclimating to the subtle change in temperature that does not perceive the danger or his eventual demise. 


on Jan 22, 2017

That is the best sequential stages I've ever read.  Hope you don't mind but I'm going to use that!

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