How Can Western Civilization Survive with Reviled Institutions? – The Gatestone Institute - 15.07.22

Article by J.B. Shurk who writes about politics and society for the Federalist.


A Monmouth University poll released on July 5 reveals that 57% of Americans believe that U.S. federal government actions over the last six months have directly hurt their families. In that same poll, Monmouth compiles the 22 most important priorities of the American people. Neither Russia's war in Ukraine nor Congress's January 6 Committee hearings appear anywhere on the list; instead, the top four issues all deal with skyrocketing inflation and economic uncertainty.


A new Gallup poll documents a precipitous drop in Americans' confidence across 16 major institutions, including historic lows for confidence in newspapers, the criminal justice system, big business, police, and all three branches of the federal government. The survey's results represent the lowest overall institutional confidence ever recorded in its decades-long survey history, and not a single institution reflected an increase in confidence over last year's measures. Only 7% of Americans have a "Great deal / Quite a lot" of confidence in Congress, while only 11% feel similarly about television news.


Only adding to Westerners' perception of widespread institutional corruption, an investigation by the British Medical Journal recently documented pervasive conflicts of interest within Western drug and health regulatory agencies whose budgets are funded primarily by monetary gifts from major pharmaceutical companies, the very industry players whose products the government agencies are charged with regulating.


Westerners increasingly do not trust their governments or their major news media to report accurate and reliable information. They increasingly view government actors as perpetuating two standards of justice and economic security — one for those at the very top of society's pyramid of wealth and power and one for everyone else.


Surely Western authorities cannot expect to maintain long-term legitimacy if their populations judge governing institutions as irredeemably marred by corruption and political leaders as indifferent, if not downright hostile, to ordinary citizens' wants and needs.


It has become fashionable for Western politicians to divide up the global chessboard between virtuous "democracies" struggling for world peace and threatening "dictatorships" causing hardship and chaos. Whatever the West's "democracies" are today, however, they are not bastions for representing honestly their peoples' most dire concerns, nor are they above doling out to their citizenries hefty portions of hardship and chaos.


Institutions can be broadly categorized as those that are created and maintained through human cooperation and consent and those that require force and coercion to endure. In a "democratic" society, cooperation and consent are the principal building blocks, as well as tools, for fashioning strong institutions capable of surviving unknown threats and unexpected emergencies.


What happens when consent is replaced by government force and coercion? Laws lose legitimacy. News sources are reduced to pure propaganda. Political disagreement turns to bloodshed and murder. It is as if society's cement has instead been replaced by strongmen trying to squeeze humanity's discreet blocks together with sheer muscle...


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How Can Western Civilization Survive with Reviled Institutions – by J.B
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https://www.gatestoneinstitute.org/18711/reviled-institutions


JB. Shurk writes for the Federalist about politics and society and is a freedom-minded, anti-establishment, sometimes unorthodox, committed generalist and a proud American from Daniel Boone country.


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What happens when consent is replaced by government force and coercion? Laws lose legitimacy. News sources are reduced to pure propaganda. Political disagreement turns to bloodshed and murder. It is as if society's cement has instead been replaced by strongmen trying to squeeze humanity's discreet blocks together with sheer muscle... (Image source: iStock)

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