I Got Your Center Right Here

Look. I don’t condemn all corporations. The profit motive is a good thing, so is competition. Making an honest dime is not evil. Power can certainly corrupt, though. There are bad guys, and people make mistakes, and some people are victims. And there is a role for government; defense, public works, education, protection from crime, and promotion of general welfare.

The middle is not simply splitting the difference. Nor is it an effort to tick off equal numbers of people on both sides. There is a very real philosophy in centrism. It includes all sorts of ideals, most of which are clichés, about honesty, hard work, and reward for effort and the need for consequences for bad behavior. Oddballs and radicals are odd for a reason, on either far end. Listening to others from either position is good practice, it’s educational, and leaves us all better off. I would remind you that extremism in defense of moderation is no vice!

Now, a comment on polls. I am noticing more and more that the public mood seems to be determined by the media in the public sphere. There are some long-term polls that appear to be reliable, about what people really believe. However, in general, I don’t back polls that feel like the flavor or the issue of the month. Too many people use polls to make their point.

The point I want to make revolves around common sense, good listening, being well educated before finding a conclusion, and being slow to idolize an ideology. It’s also entertaining to watch the extremists!

About Jim

I've been leading outdoor environmental education in the YMCA since the 1970s. I love teaching nature, history, current events, being a dad, fixing stuff, groups, and general thinking.
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