Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Centrism In America: Dead On Arrival

by S. Paul Forrest

As a writer aware of our political and economic struggles here in America, I have tried to point out the corporatist state affecting We the People and how our government has overtaken our lives.  I have tried to make clear that the extremist views of our current system are detrimental to progress as more and more politicians attempt to debase the middle class in order to back their campaign donors and special interest pocket liners.  What I have experienced though, is how some of my articles which have attempted to approach the middle of the aisle, have been denied publish by some sites because they do not contain absolutes in the obsessive practices of partisan politics.

When did centrism become a thing of evil exactly? When did compromise and cooperation become taboo? When the people come to believe that extremism is the only solution and the only real source of truth, we surely have reached the precipice of our Social Armageddon.  I believe there is a center in this politically confused cluster #%$@ we call America and if we are to move forward to better it, we must all begin to embrace this reality.  

The continued attack against centrism is readily seen in our presidential election campaign saga.  Mitt Romney is being attacked by his own party as too "Obama like" with his health care plan for Massachusetts and likewise, as our current President tries to straddle the center to achieve compromise, he is attacked by his. What is at the center of this (pun intended), is the realization that most Americans only react to the extremism of drama wrapped politics. 

What is incredibly astounding is how many so called "liberal" news sites have debunked centrism as a baseless stance.  Liberal in its essential meaning stands for openness to change. In a recent article on Daily Kos however (a well known Liberal site), the following was stated about what centrism is:

“It has no heart, no soul, no convictions, no principles, no ideology. It’s a blank slate, a void. It sits there waiting to be coopted by whoever shouts the loudest, bullies the meanest or spends the most money. And that’s always the far right. So in reality, "centrism" is always nothing more than a hazy mirror of the far right. Much of the time, "centrism" is simply the lipstick label on the pig of being a corporate tool.”

Really? The idea that we can never occupy the middle aisle of our nation is just lipstick on a pig?  This belief is not only inane; it is detrimental to American progress.  We can not stand together for a better America if we can't in some way find common ground between the right wing and left wing chasm of ideological radicalism infecting every aspect of this nation's political workings.  

It is because the middle ground cannot be traversed that we in this country are quickly approaching a point of no return.  The social divide created by media and Washington's political clownery, has taken us to such a state of hatred of the “other side” that solutions to our current troubles have become impossible to render.  On the Left, a total socialist system has been advocated; on the Right, a total corporatist state and neo-Christian faux ideology.  These totalitarian ideals are anti-growth, anti-progress but even worse; they are Anti-American.

Recently, I was told by a popular left wing leaning site to rewrite an article because it included remarks about the socialist system pushed by the left.  When I first saw this remark, I was stunned.  To further my writing I have been told to rewrite my opinion else not be published. This is responsible journalism?  I have time and time again stated that the truth is out there if one looks hard enough but considering my latest experience, I am quickly realizing that is not as true as I had hoped.

The movement toward extremism in this country advocated by both sides of the aisle is also proving to be effective in one very important realm; it is dividing us so derisively that we cannot possibly form a unified fight against a degrading governmental system which has all but left us to our own devices. As Abraham Lincoln once said: "A house divided against itself cannot stand."  Though this excerpt was taken from a speech on slavery, the same applies today in this, our separated nation delineated not by the Mason Dixon line but by a divide of ideological extremism covered with carpet.

We the people must come together and stand as one.  Despite the efforts by both left and right wing inspired media, We the People need to stand hand in hand in a united front against the people who thrive off of the corporate and private media practicing of yellow journalism only to sell more material items during commercial break or in the margins of their websites. This type of demagoguery will not take us forward to the revitalization of this nation, it will only serve to create more problems and widen the divide between our respective classes, races and religious beliefs.  Centrism is not an evil, it is the anti-virus for the treatment of radicalism.

I am still in awe that I was asked to rewrite or rather, reconsider my stance.  What makes me an individual is my ability to think for myself and desire to relay to other people, my thoughts.  If I give that up for the sake of adhering to the sensationalism of modern journalism, I give up part of my soul and myself to those who only want to profit from reactionary journalism in lieu of its reasoned counterpart.  To those who would ask this of me I can only say; I will not comply.

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