Insight

The Radical Middle: Whitley Reveals His Agenda

This website is politically neutral. In fact, it isn't a political website at all. It's primary mission is to publish news, without filtering out legitimate news of the strange. In fact, we search for such news, because we want to enable our readers to know and understand the edge of reality and experience.

Whitley and Anne Strieber are not politically netural, however. We are also not in political agreement about everything, so an opinion expressed by one of us in our personal areas, Whitley's Journal and Anne's Diary, may or may not be shared by the other.

We live in an increasingly polarized society. Much of the media is also polarized. Talk radio is overwhelmingly dominated by fringe elements of the far right. Now there is a new far left network starting up. There is, however, no network that serves the vast American center, which still dominates our political life to a much greater extent than either extreme would like us to believe.

This country was not designed by its founding fathers to be ruled by consensus. Our government is structured to enable negotiation, to allow many different opinions, but still function efficiently.

Although we do not agree with one another politically in every way, in general, Anne and I are both part of that center. Because our website does not identify itself with either pole, we get outraged comment from both extremes every day. It's perfectly possible to open one e-mail and be accused of being a 'liberal,' then find the next accusing us of being Nazis.

The media is so polarizing our country that the center is now coming to seem more radical than the extremes. "You're with us or you're against us" is the modern byword. But that isn't America. No indeed, America is about balance, not consensus.

For example, I believe in a free market system. That makes me a right wing fanatic to a fair number of people. But I think it should be balanced by appropriate regulation that prevents the big guy from stepping on the face of the little man. That makes me a liberal to others.

Both extremes oversimplify us as individuals and as a country. The United States of America is one of the greatest of all human achievements. It is not that way because its political system encourages domination by whatever the popular ideology happens to be. It is that way because the system enforces balance.

I often have conspiracy theorists on my radio program, because I feel that there has been a lot of collusion and conspiratorial activity against the American people, by those who do not trust our intelligence--or, perhaps, fear it. We are cursed by an outrageous system of classification that, with the end of the cold war, has been continued anyway, not only to protect necessary secrets, but to hide mistakes and retain power.

Knowledge is power, and all ideologues know that, if you control knowledge, you control the people. Secrecy is the thief of freedom.

Secrecy is routinely and outrageously abused by government, and this has been going on too long. I think that, even now, the murders of John and Robert Kennedy are unsolved because of the misapplication of secrecy laws. I think that a great deal of cold war abuse of innocent civilians remains hidden. I think that the value of the UFO phenomenon, whatever it may have to offer us, has been sacrificed on the altar of secrecy.

The abuses continue. I think that Flight 800, for example, was shot down by terrorists, and that the Clinton administration intentionally covered this up. I believe that 911 would not have happened if the FBI had acted properly prior to the attack, and I think that elements within the government who do not trust us with our freedom looked the other way and let it happen.

I have friends who are close to the president. I do not know him personally, but I am aware of his personal struggle. I see him as a man of courage and I am quite certain that he does as he thinks right. He is farther to the right than I am, just as Clinton was farther to the left.

I think that there is substantial evidence that the last election was flawed, but that does not make him, to me, a bad president. All presidents are good and bad. Under Clinton, we enjoyed peace and prosperity. But he besmirched the office through grotesque personal weakness. Under Bush, the dogs of war have been unleashed and we are in a state of economic depression. He has been, to a great extent, diminished as a president by his need to service the various far-right constituencies that elected him.

Like President Truman, however, he has risen above many of the impediments placed before him and touched presidential greatness. For this reason, he is beginning to be hated by both extremes. To a man like me, in the center, I am grateful that, at a time when decisive action was needed, we had a president in office who was willing to dare the storm. But I wish that he had been able to do it more from the political center. If he had, his would be a better presidency. Ours would be a better country.

I think that its unfortunate that the media has found it profitable to foster an atmosphere of ideological extremism. The reason is that they can gain access to large groups of viewers and listeners by appealing to extremes that are dominated by organizationschurches, political action groups, whatever. In their eagerness to draw listeners, they give their airspace to whoever gathers the highest ratings.

This is polarizing our country. Moderation is the oil that lubricates the wheels of a free society. Ideology, ultimately, fails all societies it seeks to dominate, for the simple reason that it can never be comprehensive enough to accommodate all human needs. This is true of both the ideology of the left and the right. A moderate seeks to modify ideas to fit needs. An ideologue seeks to suppress needs that dont fit his ideas. Thus the left suppresses the need of a business to enjoy a free market. Thus the right suppresses the need of the individual to be protected from the excesses of that market.

On my radio program and on our website, there will be some political discussion, and it will be open to authors from the left, the right and the center. For example, weve just had leftist Greg Palast. Soon we will have another commentator from the right, and he will be treated with the same respect that Mr. Palast received.

But, in general, politics is not the thrust of our programming. What were interested in is the edge of science, the spirit and reality, and this is where we will continue to concentrate our efforts.

I just want you to know where we stand, though, because this is a very political era, and the extremists have the high ground. Those of us who seek to take the best from both sides must declare ourselves, also. Ironic, these days, that those of us who adhere to the wisdom of balance must, because of the moderation in our hearts, be thrust into the center of the whirlwind.

NOTE: This Insight, previously published on our old site, will have any links removed.


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