The Real Competing Ideologies – There are only two

It seems to me there are only two ideologies in the world when you strip away all the stuff that is designed to make them look new, fresh, or interesting (which has been piled on them for thousands of years and so, can get pretty deep).

The ideologies come down to (drum roll)

1)The ends justify the means
2)The means justify the end

As an example – the current Supreme Court of the United States vacancy
The Republicans clearly abandoned their duty of filling a vacancy with the best possible candidate by refusing to hold confirmation hearings under Obama. This and other actions have consistently painted them as the ‘end justify the means’ party. They (presumably) have a vision of what the United States looks like and they are willing to do whatever they have to do to get there – whether it be obstructionism or the abandonment of justice (literally, a supreme court justice seat left vacant is exactly that).

The left is supposed to be the ideological side of things, but obviously there are many in the Democratic party who play the same ‘ends justify the means game’ as those on the right. The unfair treatment of Bernie Sanders as a candidate is one example, and those calling for tit for tat obstructionism are another. These groups also are playing on the side of the ends justify the means party – albeit with different ends in mind.

Then, there is the second party, the party of the means justifies the ends. This is where the people I would classify as the good guys stand. These are the people who understand that it’s not about the destination but about how you get there. It’s not about winning or losing but about playing the game the best you can. It’s not about some imaginary endgame (that will never come to pass, because the ends that we get are never the ends that the hardliners are shooting for, never, not once in the entire history of mankind – not a single time)- it is about how we live, how we conduct ourselves, how we treat each other and by the same measure, how we treat ourselves.

The United States was not created with an ends in mind. There was no grand vision of a workers utopia or any other kind of utopia – it was an experiment unlike any other, designed to give us the means to reach a destiny that no one could foretell. It was the path laid out for the United States that made it special – not some imaginary end game.

It is sad to see that our country, the noblest experiment in the history of humankind, has fallen to those who clearly feel the ends justify the means. This is my warning note – it may seem like the only way to defeat them is with the same sort of tactics – the playing dirty for a desired positive outcome – but when you start playing dirty there is no going back. The outcome stops being positive. You change the future and make it darker.

Let us go back to our roots and stop thinking about the ends while we focus on the means we use to get to wherever the future may take us.