THE THIRD WAY

Politics Of The Radical Center


In 1980, Marilyn Ferguson set forth in The Aquarian Conspiracy a "common ground/consensus" model where the Far Left and the Far Right can compromise and reach agreement on individual issues. In a chapter titled "The Power of the Radical Center," Ms. Ferguson asserts that Truth is arrived at via consensus, whereas extremes on any issue are merely half-truths:

"The political perspective of the Aquarian Conspiracy is best described as a kind of Radical Center. Its not neutral, not middle-of-the-road, but a view of the whole road. From this vantage point, we can see that the various schools of thought on any one issue -- political or otherwise -- include valuable contributions along with error and exaggeration.

"As it was expressed in an editorial in the British Journal, ‘The New Humanity’: We are neither right nor left but uplifted forward. The New Humanity advocates a new kind of politics.... Governance must develop a framework, not a rigid structure, and we must find unity within our immense and wonderful diversity. At this point in human evolution there can be no way out of the global political stalemate unless there is first, and fast, a new humanity with a changed psychology. That new psychology is developing, a new humanity is emerging.

"Most historical movements have their last will and testament along with their manifesto. They have known more surely what they oppose than what they are. By taking a firm position, they trigger on inevitable countermotion, one that will disorient their fragile identity almost at once. Then rapid metamorphosis and self-betrayal: pacifists who become violent, law-and-order advocates who trample law and order, patriots who undo liberties, 'people’s revolutions' that empower new elites, new movements in the arts that become as rigid as their predecessors, romantic ideals that lead to genocide.

"Anthropologist Edward Hall lamented our cultural inability to reconcile or include divergent views within one frame of reference. We are also indoctrinated by our right/wrong, win/lose, all/nothing habits that we keep putting all our half-truths into two piles: truth versus lies, Marxism versus capitalism, science versus religion, romance versus realism––the list goes on and on. We act as though either Freud or Skinner had to be right about human behavior, as Hall noted, when in fact 'both work and are right when placed in proper perspective.'

"Partial viewpoints force us into artificial choices, and our lives are caught in the crossfire. Quick, choose! Do you want your politician to be compassionate or fiscally responsible? Should doctors be humane of skillful? Should your schools pamper children or spank them? The rare successful reforms in history –the durable Constitution, for example – synthesize. They blend the old and the new values. Dynamic tension, in the form of the system of checks and balances, was built into the paradigm of democracy. Whatever its flaws, the framework has proved amazingly resilient.

"When nearly two hundred of the most effective Aquarian Conspirators were asked to categorize themselves politically on a questionnaire, many expressed great frustration. Some checked off every box – radical, liberal, centrist, conservative – with apologies. Some drew across the spectrum. Others wrote marginal notes: 'Liberal but...' 'Radical on some issues, conservative on others.' 'These categories don’t apply.' 'Radical but not in the usual sense.' 'Choices too linear.' 'Old categories useless.'

"Politicians of the Radical Center are easily misunderstood and unusually vulnerable to attack, regardless of their accomplishments, because they don’t take strident positions. Their high tolerance of ambiguity and their willingness to change their mind leave them open to accusations of being arbitrary, inconsistent, uncertain, or even devious.

"Traditionally, we have wanted to identify our friends and enemies. Lobbies, political realities, and the media, playing both sides against each other, usually force politicians into taking black-and-white positions. But sooner than we may suppose, Radical Center will be a viable point of view. The rising number of new movements, all demonstrating and pressuring, combined with traditional special-interest lobbies, may finally force politicians to seek a middle way through the mine field. Politicians may finally have no choice but to transcend the either-or dilemma.

"In the long run, it is the evolving Radical Center constituency that will engender increasing numbers of candidates and elect some of them to office.... As in the model of Burns, the followers will help transform the leaders - those leaders who sense the shift to higher needs.

"In his study of cultural awakenings, William McLoughlin ... foresees that at some future point, no earlier than the 1990s, a consensus will emerge that will thrust into political leadership a president with a platform committed to fundamental restructuring. It will reflect the new belief system, with its greater respect for nature, for others, for craftsmanship, and for success measured in terms of friendship and empathy, not money or status.

"A commitment to Radical Center doesn’t work as a sometime thing." 1.

The Hegelian Dialectic

Using classic terminology (unity in diversity, consensus, synthesize), Ms. Ferguson has described the dynamics of Georg Hegel's dialectical process, which is the philosophy that conflict creates history. Webster's New Universal Unabridged Dictionary defines the Hegelian Dialectic in terms of equally assertable propositions that are reconciled by embracing a third proposition which is a "higher truth" -

"Hegelian Dialectic, Hegelianism. An interpretive method, originally used to relate specific entities or events to the absolute idea, in which some assertable proposition (thesis) is necessarily opposed by an equally assertable and apparently contradictory proposition (antithesis), the mutual contradiction being reconciled on a higher level of truth by a third proposition (synthesis)."
What Ms. Ferguson omitted to mention is that modern social transformers have taken Hegel's axiom a step further to the proposition that controlled conflict can create a predetermined history. When global planners speak of "managed conflict" they are implying the managed use of conflict for long run predetermined ends - the higher level of truth.

Ferguson further claimed that a "shift to higher needs" would be sensed by a future "president with a platform committed to fundamental restructuring." Insiders are now calling the "higher lever of truth" the Third Way. In his January 27 State of the Union Address, President Clinton claimed that his government represents a "Third Way":

"We have moved past the sterile debate between those who say government is the enemy and those who say government is the answer. My fellow Americans, we have found a third way. We have the smallest government in 35 years, but a more progressive one. We have a smaller government, but a stronger nation. We are moving steadily toward an even stronger America in the 21st century: an economy that offers opportunity, a society rooted in responsibility and a nation that lives as a community."
On September 21, several heads of state attended a Third Way Conference at New York University. In an interview, British Prime Minister Tony Blair inadvertently disclosed the Hegelian philosophy of the social planners. According to the Guardian newspaper:
"Blair said that the world's center-left parties had to put themselves at the forefront of managing social change in the global economy. 'The old left [communists] resisted that change. The new right [conservative capitalists] did not want to manage it. We have to manage that change to produce social solidarity and prosperity.'"
Appended to this post are four articles on The Third Way. Blair Tells of Third Way and One Reason for the Laws, by Don Fiedor, explain the Third Way society that is envisioned by the social planners:
"...in a 'Third Way' society, private property must be allowed. Rather than government owning all property and the means of production, as in pure socialism, an alternative is used. In a 'Third Way' society, property and business is heavily controlled by government regulation, rather than government ownership.
"However, in a 'Third Way' society, the laws to keep us citizens in line come from the communist model of government -- which means complete government control of everything from womb to tomb. We are to have a semblance of freedom. But the working class people must never have enough freedom (or accumulative power) to interfere effectively in either commerce or government. The moneyed elite, however, work under the capitalist system, and capitalist rules, so as to continue generating wealth. The elite get the freedom, the workers get strictly controlled."
How The Dialectic Works

Contrary to Tony Blair's protest that "The new right [conservative capitalists] did not want to manage [social change]" are the facts. The following excerpt from a Futures World News article on the Third Way conference at NYU exemplifies the massive disinformation campaign that is presently underway:

"Last month Third Way thinkers met in New York to define their ideas and draw attention to their successes. The president and Mrs. Clinton were there, along with the prime ministers of Britain, Italy and Sweden...
"...to true believers like Bill and Hillary Clinton, the Third Way is a historic alternative to the extremes of left and right. It is market-friendly but inclusive and caring. Call it capitalism with a heart, or socialism with a hard nose for economics.
"Washington Post columnist and Brookings Institution senior fellow E.J. Dionne calls it 'The Big Idea.' In a recent article under that title, Dionne wrote, 'Something serious is happening in public life.' An 'important transformation (is) taking hold in the wealthy democracies of Europe and North America,' and the Clinton administration is 'at the forefront.'
"Dionne told IBD [Investor's Business Daily], 'The core purpose is trying to change the trajectory of politics to say, yes, government isn't enough, the market is necessary, but you can't have either progress or social justice without a substantial role for government.'...
"On cultural issues, the Third Way is anti-traditional, says William Lind of the Free Congress Research and Education Foundation, a conservative think tank.
"Lind sees the Third Way as the latest stage of a revolt against traditional Western culture. He defines it as 'Marxism translated from economic into cultural terms, largely by crossing it with Freud.' "Whereas Marx pitted economic classes against each other, 'cultural Marxism' uses sexual and cultural classes - women, homosexuals, non-Europeans - to overthrow the social order."
About the Players

William Lind serves on the staff of the Free Congress Foundation as Director Center for Fiscal Responsibility Center for Transportation & Urban Studies. Paul Weyrich founded the Free Congress Foundation in 1974 as the political arm of the Heritage Foundation which he had established one year earlier.

On the Heritage web site is posted a tribute to Weyrich's foresight 25 years ago in realizing the need for a "conservative alternative" to the liberal Rockefeller-funded Brookings Institution, "the catalyst for many of the legislative successes of the liberals during the 1960s and early 1970s...":

The Power of Ideas: The Heritage Foundation at 25 Years

"As the future head of The Heritage Foundation described the state of legislative affairs in the early 1970s, 'The Left had a finely tuned policy-making machine, and the Right had nothing to match it...
"Pointing to the 'disproportionate influence' of the Ford Foundation and 'the Brookings Institute' [sic] on public policy, the foundation promised to provide in-depth research based on 'traditional American economic and social values' and the Constitution. Its audience would be 'the public at large' and members of Congress 'who struggle to cope with the initiatives of the liberal-socialist ‘think tanks.’"
The "conservative" image that is presented by the Heritage Foundation is contradicted by solid evidence that Heritage and its vast network are working with and are, in fact, ideologically compatible with the liberal establishment. For example, the recent report on Hudson Institute documented that "conservative" scholars of Hudson Institute and the Heritage Foundation were key players in the federal government's GOALS 2000 plan to radically restructure American society through education reform.

Hudson Institute's Workforce 2020 Conference also linked to the John F. Kennedy School of Government of Harvard University.

The John F. Kennedy Library Centers for Research and Policy Development includes the following mix of liberal (L) and (pseudo-) conservative (C) think tanks:

Brookings Institution (L), CATO Institute (C), Urban Institute, Cascade Policy Institute [Oregon affiliate of Heritage Foundation], Aspen Institute (L), Hudson Institute (C), Heritage Foundation (C), National Commission on Civic Renewal [William Bennett], the Nelson A. Rockefeller Institute of Government (L), RAND Corporation (L), Reason Foundation (L).

The liberal Brookings Institution list of Scholars includes Diane Ravitch who, with Chester Finn, directs the conservative Hudson/Fordham Foundation Education Excellence Network (EEN) and the Education Policy Institute (EPI), a subsidiary of Heritage Foundation's Center for Education Reform. Hudson Institute reciprocates with a link to Brookings Institution.

The Kuyper Institute (C), which is affiliated with David Hall's Center for the Advancement of Paleo Orthodoxy (C) is also linked with Brookings Institution (L), Hoover Institution (Stanford University), Hudson Institute (C), the John F. Kennedy School of Government (Harvard University) and the Acton Institute.

The Heritage Foundation and Hudson Institute links also include the Acton Institute.

Lord Acton was a 19th century Roman Catholic appointed by British Prime Minister Gladstone to the position of Professor of History at Cambridge - an appointment which caused no small controversy in the Anglican Church which sponsored the university. Acton was distinguished for his vision of the ultimate "Universal History," a mystical belief in a universal conscience of the human race which enables mankind to gradually evolve morally, and so progress in civilization to overcome the world. Author of The Occult Underground, James Webb, correlated Lord Acton's Universalism with the vision of religious unity undertaken by the Parliament of the World's Religions at its opening conference in 1893. 2.

The unpleasant fact is that the massive network of non-governmental organizations represent constituencies which are unwittingly collaborating with their ideological adversaries. The success of this Third Way endeavor gives testimony to the genius of using NGOs as instruments of consensus building, as noted in the Nov. 7 Tampa Bay Online:

"'Nonprofits are a way to avoid overreliance either on the state or the market. They have this wonderful way of tapping individual initiative, but they do it for public purpose,' said Lester M. Salamon, co-author of a new report for Johns Hopkins University that details the NGO movement's rapid growth.

"Once viewed primarily as 'do-gooders' and religious groups trying to 'save the world,'' NGOs have evolved into a movement of liberals and conservatives. British Prime Minister Tony Blair calls it the 'third way' in world affairs. German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder dubs it the 'new middle.' To academics it's an emerging 'civil society.'''

As a Vapor of Smoke the Republican Revolution Ends!

This WINDS article gives readers a rare perspective on current events as the outworking of the dialectical process:

"If one follows the news, he or she will hear daily reports of political bickering and fighting between the 'liberals' and the 'conservatives,' or the two political parties. These sham fights have two purposes. The first is to create the illusion of alternate points of view in the political process (which there is not). The second is to create a sense of gridlock and frustration in the electorate so that they may be led to embrace the new political system (the third wave), and to relinquish current constitutional protections. In this, the two parties have served their true masters well.
"In Professor Quigley's Tragedy and Hope, he wrote concerning business interests that 'they expected that they would be able to control both political parties equally. Indeed, some of them intended to contribute to both and allow an alternation of the two parties in public office in order to conceal their own influence, inhibit any exhibition of independence by politicians, and allow the electorate to believe that they were exercising their own free choice."
The concept of controlling all political parties is also found in the Protocols of the Learned Elders of Sion, #5:
"We shall assume to ourselves the liberal physiognomy of all parties, of all directions, and we shall give that physiognomy a voice in orators who will speak so much that they will exhaust the patience of their hearers and produce an abhorrence of oratory.