The Divide in America

by Payne Kilbourn
Thursday, February 11, 2021

Today about half of adults are college graduates. A majority are educated in technical fields. The rest pursue non-technical studies such as the humanities, journalism and social sciences. In recent decades many of these fields no longer educate – they school students in academic theories and ideas that are asserted as facts. The past is revised. The present is one of injustice, greed and exploitation. The future will bring a better government of enlightened experts who will fix things.

This subset of graduates is conditioned by their environment. On college campuses, electricity, food, water, goods and housing seem like the air they breathe: they simply exist and are paid for. After college, many find another kind of campus. In unprecedented numbers, they have filled the ranks of non-profit enterprises, activist groups, Internet companies and most significantly, media producers. They lead a cloistered life, insulated from the daily reality that others face. They don’t make things, don’t deal with customers, and don’t have to earn a profit. Their paychecks are unaffected by weather events, market vagaries or epidemics. They dwell in a metaphysical world in which reality is defined by ideas.

Schooled to believe they are intellectually superior, they reject information that doesn’t come from within their circle.

Those in the media fashion narratives that comport with their schooling and are reinforced by their environment. Because their media dominates the public square, their creations define reality. Despite a century of human progress, they insist that the modern world is regressing and that today’s societies are hateful, unjust and destructive. So they supply a steady stream of stories and images that reinforce this view. In the 1980’s they adopted the ultimate story of regression: man-made global warming.

After decades of a media saturated with negative stories and dire predictions, millions of people have come to see that few of them reflect reality. After decades of citing sweeping labels and stereotypes, millions see they are absurd. After decades of activist control freaks insisting that their vision for the future is the only way, millions see it’s a facade.

The divide in America is not ideological, demographic or economic. The divide is between the millions who have figured out that the national-level media “reality” is nonsense and those who have not. It is between those who think for themselves and those that let the sophomoric media think for them.