Do Something For America

As I mentioned before, my bachelor’s thesis happened to be on the issue of “Hamiltonian” and “Jeffersonian” politics during the early years of the American republic, and as a result, I gained insight into what is essentially the ‘class conflict’ or class divisions and the ‘class struggle’ that manifests on occasion in American domestic politics and American society. On the other hand, my master’s thesis was on U.S. policy towards Afghanistan. Thus, my student days very much culminated in an overview or survey of America’s domestic politics and American foreign policy. 

In addition to the book learning and research as a student, there were also very interesting conversations and experiences to be had along the way. Some of them I have shared with my readers, and some I have kept to myself or have forgotten to share. Also, some of the conversations and experiences are more memorable and meaningful than the others. It is hard to forget how one white female ‘Foreign Service Officer’ (FSO) and PhD recipient complained in front of me that American men will never accept women as their equal no matter how educated or successful women are, or when one foreign policy professor subtly asked that I “do something for America” instead of helping other countries. Nor could I forget how one of my foreign policy professors cursed the female neocon who was the ‘White House Office of Management and Budget’ (OMB) director during the Bush 43 administration with a passion. 

While it may not make sense for some people as to why one would so candidly and openly share such conversations and experiences, there is actually a dual function to such candidness and openness. For one, there is an educational and pedagogical element to the whole scheme. Second, there is a cathartic and therapeutic aspect to the sharing of experiences and knowledge with others. As one of my professors once said, the “psychic income” you get from sharing knowledge and information with people outweighs any sort of monetary income one could accumulate throughout life. Thus, the cathartic and therapeutic effect of writing and sharing knowledge and information with others has more value in the long run than the immediate material benefits or ‘utility’ one seeks to arrive at by being cunning and sober.

In turn, knowing about the character and politics of the country and society one lives in and then helping oneself overcome whatever inhibitions or thoughts that may generate neurosis in one’s own brain and mind ultimately results in the ability to help others in a social context or situation that essentially amounts to a collective mental health crisis or epidemic. Also, there can be somewhat of a sense of “emergency” and a level of distrust towards the person offering their help and services from within both government and society at-large. But as Wilfred Trotter wrote:

“The doctor on his part is perhaps dimly aware of the strange mixture of distrust and inordinate expectation that the patient unconsciously entertains; he knows, moreover, how feeble are the resources against disease he commands, and he knows that for the reconciliation of these two incompatibles the responsibility will rest on him and his personal moral force.”

Because of the preponderance of personality and moral force in interpersonal relations, a certificate or degree is not necessary or required for what is essentially “energy healing” and therapeutic work. There is also the possibility of what Trotter called a “correlation of all mental phenomena” which underlies the ontological and psychological turbulence and upheaval of our day and age as well as the ontological and psychological turbulence and upheaval of previous epochs and stages of Western history. Hence, an “interdisciplinary” approach to the study of reality and science or an overview and survey of “international affairs” essentially unleashes the potential of perhaps discerning or uncovering this psychoanalytic “correlation of all mental phenomena” which might actually be at the heart of our economic, political, and social affairs. 

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