Talking about important issues to many of our neighbors can be really hard these days. This is unfortunate, since the world we all depend upon is experiencing major upheavals. We need to be able to communicate about existential issues. All of us are in this together, and the planet is in rough waters. With climate change, pandemic fear, and war drums, voting citizens need to come to group consensus to confront these critical issues as a unified front.

But, it is often hard to even broach these subjects today. People react with anger when hearing views that disagree with their own. So, why are we so spring-loaded today?

One reason is that all humans have “Confirmation Bias,” where we only want to hear things that support what we already believe. Everyone wants to be right, and it is often very painful when we learn that we are not. We often get our beliefs confused with our identity, so opposing opinions can be felt as an attack. It takes mental effort to rethink things, so it is easier to stay with our existing beliefs.

Another huge factor is “Tribal Thinking.” People want to feel secure in their social groups, and tend to go along with what the group believes. Views coming from a respected leader can quickly become axiomatic. 

The two main categories of “news” sources, Right and Left wing, expound opposing points of view, and encourage hostility toward those who believe the views that the other side is being given. Interestingly, these seemingly opposing “news” outlets are all owned by the same consortium of corporations.

Rupert Murdock holds controlling interest in Fox News, The Wall Street Journal and Disney. Vanguard, BlackRock and other major investment companies are involved in Murdock’s holdings. These same companies own major interests in ABC, CNN, NBC, MSNBC and most other major media outlets.

These corporations are top shareholders in Exxon Mobile.

They are also top shareholders in Pfizer and Moderna.

If you search with your computer, you can also find that these firms have controlling interests in the food, chemical, manufacturing and all other infrastructural industries.

The owners of everything also own both left and right wing media. We are reaching the apex of a process that has been evolving for a long time. Now, a fraction of one percent of the world’s human population owns 80% of everything.

These two wings of the media, owned by the same institutions, are putting out narratives that keep people at each other’s throats. This is known as “divide and conquer.” During the past couple of years of crisis, wealth has shifted dramatically upward, as factions in our population war against each other.

The problem is not your Conservative or Liberal neighbor, but strategies that come from the power elite, whose wealth and power is gaining daily at our expense. Please try to have compassion for those whose views contradict yours. They are hearing a totally different narrative.