Divided States of America

, San Diego

In the aftermath of the Inauguration weekend, one of the ongoing issues is how societal polarization in the USA is going to resolve. Eventually, it must. The question is: how? It could persist for a long time. It could have a cathartic and possibly violent release. Or, it could be gradually dissipated, starting tomorrow. (The last path looks unlikely, right now).

The PBS TV channel in the US just put out an interesting two-part documentary on the ‘Divided States’ …

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/frontline/film/divided-states-of-america/

… reviewed here:

http://www.vox.com/culture/2017/1/17/14292544/divided-states-of-america-review-frontline-pbs

Of course, the division in US politics isn’t a surprise to anyone who’s been paying attention for the past ten years. But what leaped out at me [italics added] from the review were these phrases:

“…both parties believing the other might bring about the literal apocalypse …”

“… It’s clear they [Republicans] were trying to hamper his [Obama’s] every move, but every potential explanation for their intransigence — racial, political, social, even cultural — falls short …”

“…two completely different countries, sharing the same borders but very divergent understandings of reality, elected two very different men …”

You can find one explanation of societal polarization – an explanation that speaks directly to ‘apocalyptic imaginings’ and ‘divergent realities’ – in this recent EFI article:

https://emergingfuture.com/consciousnesseconomyearth2/

Benjamin J Butler will provide ongoing commentary on how EFI sees the polarization of society playing out, in the US and elsewhere, in his newsletter ‘Adventures of a Futurist’:

https://emergingfuture.com/membership/

Nicholas Wright
Nicholas Wright
Economist

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