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Opportunity of 1996

Nov 06, 1996 08:14 AM
by K. Paul Johnson

Kym expresses her feelings about the election.  While not
wanting to be off-topic for the list, I have some ideas to
share on it that are at least quasi-theosophical.  It seems to
me that the voters have expressed a will that at some level
reflects a spiritual maturation process.  (My own bias is that
of a yellow-dog Democrat, but I think this observation holds
across party lines.)  Although we didn't get the kind of
substantive discussion of issues we wanted, at least we didn't
get the kind of personal vituperation that prevailed in the
last two national elections.  The ads were less nasty, the
candidates generally more conciliatory, and the electorate was
less responsive to appeals to party loyalty than ever before.
(At the congressional level as well this was true.)
The concession speech by Dole indicated a willingness to serve
in any capacity that would help the country, and I'm inclined
to trust the scuttlebutt that says Clinton will invite him
(maybe already has) to head a commission to study entitlements.

The next four years of divided government can go two ways,
basically the Gingrich way or the Clinton way.  Congress can
attack the President at every opportunity, renew its rightwing
agenda, launch scores of investigations, and try to position itself
for major Republican gains in 1998.  But they risk driving up their
own negatives in the process, and should have learned something from the
government shutdown.  Or they can focus on trying to govern as
centrists, to solve problems, to blur party distinctions, to be pragmatists
rather than ideologues.  Not having my crystal ball at hand, I can't
predict the outcome.  But what I can predict is that if the polarization
and confrontation option is chosen, public opinion will be
strong opposed to it and the result will be to punish those
perceived as least conciliatory.

The thing that as a theosophist I take on faith is that there
is an evolutionary dialectic going on here, with a potential
for breakthroughs to new levels of political maturity.

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