Thanks for All the Help with My Political Experiment — by Todd Macfarlane

TM 1First of all I want to sincerely thank the voters of Millard County for participating with me in an interesting political experiment and study this year.

At this stage of the game I have never been naive enough to think that I had any realistic chance of winning a Millard County Commission seat — especially one that has been doggedly earmarked for decades to be occupied by someone from the West side of the county

But more importantly, for the past 10 years or so, and especially for the past four, I have been rocking the boat and ruffling feathers by seeking to challenge conventional narratives in Millard County, and seeking to tell the other side of the story regarding the functions of Millard County Government.  It has been no surprise that this challenging of paradigms has been upsetting to many people.  But during much of that time, I have seriously wondered just how many people have actually even been listening and paying attention?  Well, I got my answer.  Apparently, in the process of challenging paradigms, I’ve really ticked off a lot of people — so apparently a whole lot more people have been listening and paying attention than I actually thought.  So how can I complain about that?

I started out considering what kind of study I could undertake to gauge the extent that local Millard County residents were actually paying any attention to my message, and how many people might even be aware of what I have been saying.  Ultimately, I concluded: What better way to gauge the reach of this message and approach than by running for local political office and see what the reaction is?  Through my campaign for county commissioner, I used every medium locally available to get this basic message out there — knowing full well it’s not what people want to hear.  Apparently it worked — even better than I might have imagined.

And here is the important thing to understand: According to renowned German philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer, “All Truth passes through three stages:  First it is ridiculed.  Second, it is violently opposed.  Third, it is accepted as being self-evident.”

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Melissa Chu explores this premise thoroughly in an article on Huffington Post.   According to Chu, just because a viewpoint, concept or principle that you advocate is not popular does not mean that it isn’t true.  Truth is often unpopular.  In most cases, truth has to cross some pretty rough water as it progresses through three stages, on the long arduous journey to final acceptance.  Chu’s article doesn’t bother to address how President Trump’s statements about fake news and mainstream media bias seems to fit this pattern.  Likewise, the way the Bundy family and their issues have now been treated by judges, juries, many elected leaders, and especially the mainstream media, also seems to fit this pattern.  SEE Fair Weather Friends and the Second Amendment.   I started addressing this issue in earnest n 2016, and after many years of successful misinformation campaigns, but once criminal charges were filed, only took two years to run its full course on an expedited criminal trial schedule. SEE Welcome to the New Normal — Seven Realities Nobody Wants to Talk About.  What I have written about this very primary election here in Millard County,and how it has been handled, likewise seems to fit this pattern.  SEE The Millard County Primary Election-by-Mail Saga.

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In my efforts to challenge conventional narratives and tell the other side of the story about Millard County government, I began in earnest in 2014.  Consistent with Schopenhauer’s thesis, to a large extent my efforts have always been met with ridicule and adamant opposition here locally in Millard County.  But in many cases it has only proven that we’ve been on target, so I have continued to take the same approach, and even as these truths continue to encounter ridicule and opposition, many of the truths I have expressed and positions I have taken have ultimately become self-evident.

This year, as a political candidate, when political expediency would normally dictate taking a different approach — seeking to simply stroke everyone and tell people what they want to hear — which is exactly what most political candidates do — I sought to take the opposite approach, and continue to challenge conventional narratives.   I have sought to round-out the narrative by telling the other side of the story. I have taken the position that despite most peoples’ general unawareness (many don’t know because they don’t want to know) there are serious accountability issues in Millard County Government at a fundamental level — particularly relating to transparency, even-handedness, due process, property rights, and fiscal responsibility — that no one else seems to be willing to address or do anything about.  And I have taken the position that too much Millard County policy is driven by personality-based factors and considerations for the sake of political expediency,  rather than sound principle.  From the outset I said that my campaign wasn’t about me.  It was about the fundamental principles and issues that no one else seems to want to talk about.  And it has been readily apparent that  this isn’t what people want to hear.  By contrast, consistent with the age-old pattern, other candidates in virtually every race  have sought to completely ignore these thorny issues, and focus entirely on personality, popularity, and popular buzzwords and hollow, substance-less themes.

But the outcome of this election has provided me with a great opportunity to get a better idea of just how many people have actually been paying attention, and what their reaction to the message is.  It is reassuring to know that people have indeed been paying attention, and are reacting exactly the way people typically do react in such situations when they are confronted with new truth that they don’t like.  History demonstrates that popularity and popular acceptance is no reliable measuring stick for anything of substance.  When it comes to issues of truth and principle, as John Adams said, “stand on principle even if you stand [completely] alone.”

I realize that many will scoff at the suggestion that the reaction in the election reflects a continuation of the first two stages of the progression of truth.  But in time these truths will become fully self-evident, and experience broader acceptance.  Until then, I expect plenty more negative reaction.  But at least it has given me an opportunity to have a better gauge on just how many people are paying attention, and their reaction perfectly fits the historical pattern regarding reaction to truth.

With all the problems, irregularities and issues that came to the surface in this election, the 2018 primary election saga isn’t over yet.  And, perhaps more importantly,  2020 and the opportunities it will afford are right around the corner.

Thanks again for all the help with this stage of the project.

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