When Perception Becomes Reality

Volume 11, Issue 28


Santa Monica Peir

There is a rule of thumb that most political consultants hold sacrosanct: “perception is reality.” What this means is, in crafting a political theme and message for a campaign, it is critical to address an issue from the viewpoint of the voter because their perception of the situation is reality to them. It not only doesn’t matter, it’s irrelevant if there is another general analysis of elements impacting the underlying foundation of a concern. Arguing with the public about cause and effect is futile.
President Biden’s campaign strategists are struggling with this axiom as we speak. The public’s perception of the current state of the economy is bleak and foreboding. Further, voters give the President failing marks on how he is handling the economy. The campaign’s argument is that inflation is down, jobs are up, and economic growth is expanding. Their arguments are falling on deaf ears. There are many other factors involved in the citizens’ decisions to come to this conclusion that are not the subject of today’s report. These would include the President’s age and his handling of other crises like the withdrawal from Afghanistan. However, the point is that the public’s determinations on what is wrong and how to fix it are paramount. 
National intellectuals, leaders of both political parties, and cable networks’ talking heads loiter on the appraisal that the public looks to them singularly for interpretation and explanation of what ails them. Nothing could be further from the truth. Individuals are perfectly capable of understanding and analyzing the situation in which they find themselves. Elites hover above in a government bubble and come to conclusions in theory that have very little practical application.
Government leaders are numb to the conversation that the public wants to have with them. Citizens are desirous of a two-way dialogue wherein their requirements for pursuit of happiness are met. Elected officials are doubling down on the dictate that voters must care about what is important to government and political parties in their pursuit of maintaining power. How is the general public reacting to this disconnect?
They are defaulting to the one unit of authority which is most important to them personally: their families. 
I had the occasion to visit Santa Monica Pier last week. For all the problems that California inflicts upon itself, this local area of recreation is not one of them. The crowd was a composite of middle-class America, about 30% of color, about 50% under 30 years of age, culturally diverse, families, young adults on a date, and grandparents with grandchildren.
The pier is over 100 years old representing an iconic destination. There is nothing spectacular about the rides. Disneyland nearby is incomparable. The food is unique but average. Space is limited yet the ocean makes it appear boundless. It was crowded but not overwhelmed.

People were cordial, respectful, and patient in lines. In other words, they were happy, enjoying the evening, and at peace with the diversity of their fellow citizens.
Why this composure of civil atmosphere?
The facility is affordable, accessible, manageable, secure, and successful in deliverables required for contentment. This is primarily what the majority of the public seeks in government services. Citizens want choices in how they organize their lives. They want options for opportunity and understand that they must work to achieve desired outcomes. They do not want standardized outcomes predetermined for them by aloof, out-of-touch government officials. They are respectful of and not threatened by other people’s choices. And they are happy living in the melting pot of American society where freedom to determine individual destiny and family morality is the cultural identity of one’s existential purpose. 

This is America at the grassroots today. 
National leaders are asking the wrong question. Instead of being flummoxed about why the general public is losing confidence in their competency, they should be asking why 94% of all Americans are proud to be American. If elected officials were truly servants of the people, they would speak into and lead from this principle that unites the citizens beyond all boundaries of ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, religious belief, political ideology, political party, or culture. Freedom of choice to choose one’s own destiny, religious beliefs, and pursuit of happiness is the fundamental right of the human spirit. 
Because the public has become so disdainful of national leaders and government institutions, they have but one option into which to retreat with confidence in structure of authority, the nuclear and extended family. 
A common thread in the diversity of American society is the generational component of families. At any special gathering for a holiday, wedding, or other special event, three or more generations are usually represented. At least one member of a particular generation is likely be a person of faith. The presence therefore of a belief in a Creator who ordained basic inalienable rights provides a cover of blessing over the family that is accepted by the other generations. Non-believers are therefore incorporated into an atmosphere of unconditional love that is the fiber that binds the family. The believer and the non-believer are united in the commitment that differences inside the family are respected by membership in the universal ordained moral authority of the family unit.
Politicians believe that “perception of reality” is to be defined as needed for the situation governing the circumstances of current events. Citizens believe that the “perception of reality” is defined by eternal transcendent principles that are never-changing. Reality defines the events. The events do not define reality. 
God’s principles define rules of order. Citizens understanding that God is sovereign over man and man is sovereign over government is when perception becomes reality
The strength of America and the hope for future generations is the courage manifested by the average citizen to never yield authority over their personal decisions or the governance of their families…
for in this wisdom demonstrated, hope is personified.
My name is Marc Nuttle and this is what I believe.

What do you believe?