No inferior thing depraves the will, but the will depraves itself by following inferior things inordinately.

St. Augustine, in City of God

+ + +

I am routinely amazed at the poor quality of commentary and conversation brought to us by politicians, academics, those who purport to lead us, the media and their pundits – even clerics.  With but a few exceptions, they are devoid of insight.  It is as if they have never read a thing, had an education, thought much at all about life, about human nature, the evidence of man in human history.

They fail to see the “big picture.”  Nor do they see patterns that might be present.  It is as if they do not experience what they live.  Or perhaps live very little – closed by fear and preconceptions.

People, groups and cultures self-report.  Their conversation and actions tell you who they are socially, emotionally, psychologically.  Yet, this seems lost on the leaders and public principals who speak in mass secular culture.

In his book Love and Will esteemed psychotherapist Rollo May, M.D., tells us that “… our capacity for will and decision has been irrevocably destroyed.”  He laments that in place of will is a sense that we are led by unconscious “urges, anxieties, fears, and endless … bodily drives and instinctual forces.”  In this, will fades and undercuts individual responsibility. (And I would add a displaces confidence in God and misses, as a result, the sacred journey upon which we each embark at birth.)

May observes in this state: man is less free and more determined by forces beyond his control.  Without God, I add: a helpless victim.

One can see how the loss of will reduces man and makes him easy prey to one ideological fancy or another.  Likewise, you can see how dependency on government expands, the fiction of the competent, efficient, benevolent state grows, and all sorts of abhorrent mental disorders multiply – as man becomes less than he can be and is.  Yes, as analyst Allan Wheelis commented, ” … will has been devalued, so has courage; for courage can only exist in the service of the will … (that) we have gained determinism and lost determination.

Enter the Nanny State, totalitarian rule, socialist fictions, lawless executive orders and the fecklessness of today’s “leaders.”

In contrast, today we have Trump and will vs. Hillary and dependency and powerlessness.  The former believes in man and in doing, and in this regard believes in God while that latter believes in herself, her “genius,” the ever-expanding and controlling government, and sees our country as the historically “guilty party.”

The latter sees the nation as full of helpless people while the former sees people in their full power who have, wrongly so, been neutered and filled with ideological nonsense designed to make them slaves of the state.

This election, then raises a critical question: shall you be free under Trump or slave under Hillary?

This is, and we see this in Mr. Obama’s quest to break the Little Sisters of the Poor, ultimately a question of God or no God?  Faith or faithlessness?  Belief or Unbelief?  Truth or Falsehood?  Man or state?  Hope or despair?  Life or death?

Yes, we do self-report.  This must be news to the news media and those who think they are wiser than others living in faith and see, experience, and know.