J. Andrew Zalucky
Found on FEE
Politics isn’t everything. Though everything has a political dimension, it is never the only dimension. The state, with its monopoly on coercion through physical violence, is the everyday arbiter of politics. Therefore, when people in power convince a population that every problem requires a political solution, that population is primed for authoritarianism. In other words, the population has adopted “The Dictatorship Mindset.” While political engagement is crucial to a functioning civil society, the politicization of every facet of life will eventually crush that society.
For example, Americans have a nasty habit of overstating the importance of the President. Important as the President is to signing/vetoing legislation and commanding the armed forces, he or she does not represent “who we are as a people” in any romantic sense. The media’s pathetic narrative of the President embodying our “hopes and dreams” is the modern equivalent of “Hail Caesar!” dressed up in insipid PR-speak. This is dangerous for two reasons.