Democracy’s Assassin

The Battle For Democracy Enters Kinetic Phase

The smart money is betting that Elon Musk will not succeed in his bid to buy Twitter, but that’s not stopping Tesla’s chief from trying, as he announces a new round of $7 Billion in debt financing,

(Narativ explores the latest Musk moves and his business partners in our latest After Show with Keri Kukral (in for Rachel Bitecofer) and Eric Garland.

Over at the Supreme Court, another titanic battle over rights has spilled over into the public. According to a leaked draft opinion scrapping Roe V Wade, a half-century-long plan by conservative forces to stack the court to end abortion rights appears to have succeeded.

These things (Twitter and Roe v Wade) appear to be disconnected, but when you consider their intention is – it’s easy to see why they connect. The attempted purchase of Twitter is a death knell for free speech in America and the world. Should it become an actual judgment, the SCOTUS draft decision will end abortion in half the country and establish a predicate to dissolve all such privacy rights in America.

The right to free speech and privacy is what America is all about. The land of the free could not be without these fundamental rights.

And of course, these are not the first signs of an assault on democratic norms we’ve seen in the last few years but what’s different now is that the battle for democracy has gone from a build-up or planning phase into a kinetic one.

The word kinetic is from physics. It’s the energy that an object has by virtue of its mass and speed of motion. Think of an assassin shooting a gun – The act of pulling the trigger transfers energy into the bullet. This energy becomes the kinetic energy that propels the bullet out of the chamber and en route to its target.

In the initial phase of the Battle for Democracy, the Enemies of Democracy (EOD) created a series of news events, organizations, and structures designed to set up several political and social movements. The 2016 election, Charlottesville, Kenosha, the pandemic, Stop The Steal, and Jan 6 attempted to create enough energy around different social movements that would propel it into the end of democracy as we know it. Let’s call this the “planning phase.” While this felt chaotic, the Enemies of Democracy (EOD) didn’t directly challenge our system’s structures and democratic norms, with the possible exception of Jan 6 (but many believe that was a rehearsal).

With Twitter and Roe v Wade, we are witnessing a very different series of events where the Enemies of Democracy (EOD) are directly assaulting or attempting to alter our democratic norms and institutions fundamentally. These new direct assaults are a part of what I’d describe as the ‘kinetic phase.’

Add to this, a world war like the one the Enemies of Democracy (EOD) expected would follow Russia’s attack on Ukraine, and one can see how we’ve moved from an initial ‘set-up’ or ‘planning phase’ into a ‘kinetic phase.’ Things are no longer theoretical. The threats to our system and norms are direct, in-motion, and self-propelling.

We are all riding slingshot on a bullet heading towards a potentially catastrophic event where the US and democracy may be casualties.

The good news is that it appears like the enemies of democracy (EOD) are off to a poor start in this kinetic phase. And while it’s too soon to tell, the laws of politics and physics favor the side of democracies. In terms of physics – kinetic energy can be diffused, redirected, or disrupted – i.e.; the right actions can stop our assassin’s bullet from hitting the target (democracy).

In political terms, it means staying focused on the actual events attempting to destroy democracies and electing leaders who can react in real-time.

This first step is identifying where the assaults are originating. You can’t disrupt a moving bullet if you don’t know it’s there, and it’s the responsibility of every citizen to be on the lookout and be well-versed in our global dynamics to protect it better.

The second step is electing leaders who have the proven knowledge and means to react in real-time – like Joe Biden, whose experience informs him of the right levers to pull at just the right time.

And the third step is to have an engaged electorate smart enough to understand that a leader without a legislature is a leader operating with his hands tied behind his back. Biden and the democrats need to remain in power until the task of defeating the enemies of democracy (EOD) is complete.

In the battle between democracies and autocracies, the US is winning, but this war is far from over.

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