The Past and Future Truths in the Democratic Party

Bernie Sanders' "honesty" comes from a new system of truth. Hillary Clinton's "honesty" comes from the old. It's up to each of us to choose which system we want this election to give us. We have a choice.
02/10/2016 11:54 pm ET Updated Feb 11, 2017
Democratic presidential candidate, Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt,  answers a question as Democratic presidential candidate, Hilla
Democratic presidential candidate, Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt, answers a question as Democratic presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton listens during a Democratic presidential primary debate hosted by MSNBC at the University of New Hampshire Thursday, Feb. 4, 2016, in Durham, N.H. (AP Photo/David Goldman)

There is an interesting conversation going on in the Democratic Party... regarding who is being more "honest" about the future: Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders. (See "Like it or Not, Hillary Clinton is Being More Honest with Voters Than Bernie Sanders" by Allen Clifton, writing in ForwardProgressives for an example.)

The fact is there are two kinds of "honesty" we're dealing with here. And I'm not talking about truth vs fiction, because both are true. The difference is that one "truth" has to do with the past and the other "truth" has to do with the future. I'm talking about a political system that is going through a transformation... due to a redefinition of the foundational operating principles that control its design.

The current political system's design (which is on its way out) is controlled by Big Money. That's the system in which Hillary's "honesty" is true. She is essentially saying "Honestly, this is what's possible in the system we've got." But Hillary is talking about the system an increasing number of Americans (especially the Millennials) know doesn't work. For that reason... and because so many Millennials are going to vote... it is destined to be the system of the past.

The new political system -- in which "We, the People" return to being in control of our country -- that is taking the place of the old comes with it's own definition of "honesty" and "truth." In a country once again run by "We, the People", the government will actually run differently than it currently runs... differently than the way it does in "Hillary's political system". Bernie Sanders is living in that new political system. And he is helping bring it into being for the rest of us. And this is why he is also "honest". Bernie is honest about where we can go. Hillary is honest about where she believes we are meant to remain.

This dynamic between "past and future truths" is simple to understand, if you're familiar with the history of human cultural evolution. To get you quickly up to speed, I invite you to watch the first few minutes of the masterfully produced TV series "The Day the Universe Changed". It was created by British historian James Burke in the late 1980's. I watched it back then on PBS, and it was hugely influential of my understanding of what's possible in the future and what's not.

In this 10 episode series, Mr. Burke showed how our culture has changed... how what we believed to be true has changed... how the "design of the system" (speaking in organizational development terms) has evolved throughout history. That cultural design will continue to evolve for as long as humanity exists. (It might even evolve to the future envisioned in Star Trek some day, if we're lucky.) And it's poised to take a big leap forward in this election, if enough people understand the concept of bringing "new truths" -- the design of a new system -- into being.

Bernie Sanders' "honesty" comes from that new system. Hillary Clinton's "honesty" comes from the old. It's up to each of us to choose which system we want this election to give us. We have a choice. That's something The Founding Fathers gave us and The Revolutionary War was fought to preserve. Here's to revolutionary (or evolutionary) change, my friends. Honestly, it's possible!