Relational authoritarianism is as significant a problem as "authoritarian fascism" even though most writing about authoritarian practices ignore the cultural aspect of American authoritarianism. That is a massive mistake, Umair.

Your analysis points to solutions that will always already be planted in cultural conditions that kill those solutions. Any economic or political solutions that ignore the social and cultural conditions into which they are planted are doomed to failure. (https://dr-cbg.medium.com/american-authoritarianism-dc6a2c5fae85)

It has been the case all along: we stand in a status quo that is a direct result of mostly men believing that cultural conditions are social work problems, not the big sexy abstract economic, political, or electoral solutions they have a hard-on to implement and discuss endlessly. It's about legacy building for those who ignore the cultural: they know that their solutions will always look better on paper than on the ground, so they stay out of "the fray" of "the masses" and above in their theories. (I’m so disappointed. You turned out to be as self-interested as all the rest of the mostly white men who just sit on a position and yell, without engaging. I thought you were different. I was wrong.)

We need to shift to a relational paradigm where the cultural enabling conditions are the starting place. Then we will be asking the right questions and looking in productive directions for solutions. Until then, we are all caught in an endless loop of abstract speculation.

(Umair has experience in authoritarian countries. I spent 16 years in a violently authoritarian family culture. His solutions are abstract economic theory-based: https://eand.co/ Mine is based in embodied experience and field-tested solutions: https://cathybglenn.com/welcome-the-center-for-u-s-rural-cultures-studies/. His solutions start from the top. Mine start from the bottom.)

Nope, no Biden landslide. But, let's not dance on the grave of American democracy just yet, Umair.

Written by

A San Francisco independent researcher, creative, and cultural worker. Content developer for The Relational Democracy Project. (relationaldemocracy@gmail.com)

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