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I am becoming convinced that those of us that wish to return to a more normal existence for society are going to have to learn to scare everybody on the right. The right-wing in the U.S. has done an excellent job of scaring the crap out of everybody with mostly nonsense and made-up scare tactics these past 50 years.

And the U.S. exported that fear, far and wide to the rest of the world it seems. Granted there is always a willing insecure group seeking authoritarianism as well as daddy-governments that sell them simple solutions instead of needed complex adjustments to government.

What Is This Normal Society I Speak Of?

In this history of modern man that dates from some 200,000 plus years, it could be argued that what we have is normal, best, or desired society except for one thing. You can argue with only those that are alive or knew someone personally. The rest is just speculation which diminishes its accuracy, like the telephone game, with each passing generation. And then again, best is in the eye of the beholder. I will simply define that "normal society" as one that offers freedom from abuse versus the freedom to abuse.

From the end of World War II in 1945 until a period roughly coinciding with the aftermath of the Arab oil embargo effects in 1973-74, American society made great strides to that ideal society that offered freedom from abuse. It was a period of great progress where soldiers returned to society and were offered, for their service, the opportunity to leave the farms and the factories and educate themselves at the public's expense.

In my family this policy led to a lawyer, two accountants, a pharmacist, and a leading OB/GYN doctor for 50 years. It didn't end with them. I myself attended 7 years of college in which 5 years were at the public's expense for my service in the Viet Nam war era. There was one thing that drove my immediate ancestors and my generation and this was upward mobility. The knowledge that if we worked hard and followed the rules we would prosper and be free from abuse. That promise of America is quickly being snatched away by tax cuts for the wealthy.

The first tuition-free college was established in 1847 in New York. President Lincoln signed the Land Grant College Act, which established public colleges in each state including my Alma mater The University of Florida.  In the 1960s Gov. Ronald Reagan cut finding to California universities. Thus began the decline of tuition-free universities and ushered in the era against upward mobility for all. and the end of freedom from abuse for many.

While we are making progress, as Martin Luther King and others outlined in their arch of history reference, we have passed the tipping point and luxury of taking our time with two steps forward and one step back due to our changing climate. We are in the middle of that one step back with the extremely corrupt behavior of republicans. Not only is democracy on the table but our mere human existence may as well be in danger if republicans are allowed to pretend to rule for four more years much less eight in 2024. This election in 2022 will determine if we mark time and allow some rouge states to change the election rules so voting for president is beside the point. - Robert Jennings

 Saving Democracy Takes Everyone


There is a bright side though as it appears that some in world-wide money class have now come to the realization that neoliberalism as ushered in by economic supply-siders and ignoring big issues like climate change and wealth and income inequality can have big economic downsides. Realization may be the wrong word. Perhaps it is a mere dollar and cents calculation. For instance, the cost of climate disruption is now exceeding the economic benefits of fossil fuel dependent industries. Just look at what happened in Britain. Short-term Prime Minister Liz Trus went to that Reagan/Thatcher tax cut for the rich well once too often and the financial markets called her on it. It's a very positive outcome. However I doubt that the right-wing boneheads in the U.S. will learn from her fall from grace and pocket their hubris. It will likely take an economic collapse to put them back in our proton pack.

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The United States was the first of the modern democratic countries that was ruled by popular mandate of the people being governed. At first it was not all the people, but we have made immense progress where theoretically all can participate. Yet after 250 years we are still not completely there. The right-wing, since Ronald Reagan turned Southern Democrats to the republican* party, have done their best to restrict voters that will not vote for them.

Power seekers without a conscience, media whores and republican voting canon fodder that claim Biden is illegitimate and the 2020 election was stolen, are merely greasing the slippery slope of authoritarian rule. They are not content with the theft as we know it but one to come where they will rule a public that has little choice. Call it simply "a society with freedom to abuse". - Robert Jennings

About the Author

jenningsRobert Jennings is co-publisher of with his wife Marie T Russell. He attended the University of Florida, Southern Technical Institute, and the University of Central Florida with studies in real estate, urban development, finance, architectural engineering, and elementary education. He was a member of the US Marine Corps and The US Army having commanded a field artillery battery in Germany. He worked in real estate finance, construction and development for 25 years before starting in 1996.

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