Philosophy Friday


Politics is the art of controlling your environment.
— Hunter S. Thompson

While the term politics has an origin in the philosophy of humanity and the control of ethics, its modern connotation in today’s culture is synonymous with government, talking heads, big egos, false promises, and small hope.  The fact is, despite the myriad opinion regarding politicians as individuals, politics itself is an ancient practice of philosophy and the desire to define something so abstract, from a multitude of perspectives.  Perhaps that is the biggest flaw of all: the human will to extract and control the abstraction of the mind, in the form of thought, which over time becomes jargon, policies, doctrines, and legislation.

In political philosophy years back, I learned about the foundations of society and government, focusing on topics like freedom and liberty, law and order, the idea of property, and the belief in justice.   The term itself often refers to a general perception of the people (wherever that me be in time or place) or may be a specific ethical viewpoint.  This is very similar to the term political ideology. Political science is the technical side of this, while political philosophy is considered to be a humanities discipline in academia.  The more typical name is political theory, a discipline which is closer to the social sciences. 

These labels within the actual category of politics take away from the essence of its being.  Being raised in a country that is very proud, boasting politics and government as good and superior, it is engrained in our counter culture to have an aversion to it, as it is engrained in the mainstream’s mind to vote and take part in your patriotism.  As a result, there is negativity streaming in from all sides.  The media propaganda and the political debates full of hate are shouting at us all the time.  It deafens us to the truth of the matter as we tune it out or take drastic sides to retaliate.  We are unable to see things as they are when we are rushed into choosing a side, unsure of what our own beliefs truly are. 

This proves to me that politics has morphed into a business.  It is a funding of national dichotomy, to keep us at each other’s throats, bickering over the miniscule things that don’t really matter in the grand scheme of this beautiful life.  Politics thrives off of our fear to survive and our need to belong.  If we could only see for one moment that we are brothers and sisters and we can rise up to the challenge of a new world, not necessarily of order, but of peace.  If we could all agree to disagree, keeping hateful politics out of the heart and the home.  That may be a farfetched unthinkable idea, but all ideas eventually lead somewhere.  That—at least—is my philosophy, my hope, my personal politics.