Brother Terry Patten and I have been hanging together in Boulder the last week talking a lot of politics. Yesterday we turned on the recorder as we had a breakfast discussion about the presidential election. Here’s an excerpt (the full dialog is posted on Integral Life, link below).
If we’re truly integral practitioners we don’t have the luxury to just lay back and take meta-perspectives. Stuff is happening, it’s gonna be affected by money…and we can pool what we contribute. We should be trying to make a difference. It’s a moral imperative that I can’t ignore. ~Terry
Terry and I are both strong supporters of President Obama. Terry has even opened IntegralObama.com, a website that provides an integral case for the President’s reelection, as well as a a means of aggregating contributions from integralists in a way that may increase our impact in the next Obama term. It’s shameless influence peddling, but, hey it’s for our side!
Being integralists, Terry and I both want to practice taking perspectives that are not native to our being, so in this dialog you’ll hear us attempt an integral case for Mitt Romney as well.
A better case could no doubt be made by someone who actually believes it, but it’s good practice to try! Part of integral practice is noticing how integral consciousness is evolutionarily distinct from post-modern consciousness. As we examine the post-modern meme we see that it is busy turning Romney into an evil caricature. My liberal friends fear and loathe Mitt Romney, and see him not as a worthy opponent or as the loyal opposition, but as a bad guy. The conservatives are busy doing the same to Obama of course.
When you consider the stagnation of middle class wages and take-home pay versus the distribution of wealth in the hands of less than one percent of the people, it’s just time for a readjustment, that’s all. And that’s the role of government. These elections are consequential in these ways. It’s like what Warren Buffet said, “yes we’ve had class warfare over the last twenty years, and my side won”. ~Jeff
I think integral consciousness calls us to something more. It certainly calls me, not least because I find the standard tribal political positioning of, say, a Chris Matthews or a Sean Hannity to be boring. Integral theory helps us to see the piece of the truth that is carried by every perspective. It helps me to see my own propensity to absolutize this election into a contest between good and evil, and to feel how constricting that is.
And yet we must take a stand. Terry and I do that, ticking off the main reasons why we support a second term for Obama. We also explain how to join us by supporting IntegralObama.com. Oh, and in the sprit of half-hearted fairness, Terry started IntegralRomney.com as well (though we both secretly hope no one goes there).
Listen to an excerpt below. The full audio is here on integrallife.com [FREE].