An Election Day Reminder: Vote Like Your Life Depends On It

Most people think that they know themselves

Most people think that they know themselves and what they are capable of. Nothing could be further from the truth. They are unaware of the real psychologic facts. They think that they are incapable of monstrous acts, other people do those things. I wouldn’t do that. My family wouldn’t do that. “They” do that.

Jung’s Undiscovered Self

Jung applied all of these ideas to politics in his book, “The Undiscovered Self”. He says that democracy depends on the power of reason found in a single intelligent, educated, mentally stable layer of the population. But the layer is not very thick and includes, at most, 40 percent of eligible voters.

Disinformation

A persistent disinformation campaign is the mark of authoritarian rule. Slogans and fantasies replace reason and the truth. Jung goes as far as this: “a sort of collective possession results which rapidly develops into a psychic epidemic.” Dysfunctional individuals with strong resentments are especially vulnerable to these emotional appeals. There are thousands of people with latent psychoses that politicians can activate with extreme rhetoric. Last weeks’ two assailants are perfect examples.

The dangers of party

Responsible people need to understand both the Republican and Democratic parties are in the hands of extremists. If you are too far to the right or to the left you have no place. George Washington himself warned us about the dangers of party and faction in his farewell address at the end of his service:

We are reaping the whirlwind

We have ignored warnings from George Washington and Carl Jung and we are reaping the whirlwind. The extreme right-wing demonstrators in Charlottesville chanted “Jews will not replace us”, and our failure to confront those chants has now borne its horrible fruit. It is no coincidence that the attacks on Trump critics and the murders in Pittsburgh come right before an election. We have endured dysfunctional government for years and now the terror begins.

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