Forget Waldo. Where are the Wokesters?

Every political movement requires alliances. Therefore, a list of woke players, both visible and intuited, can be assembled from images of the 2020 protest/riots ……

  • Megaphoned crowd leaders
  • Anonymous financiers/instigators
  • Democrat mayors
  • Democrat governors
  • White kneeler/prostraters
  • Street-filling protesters
  • Antifa leaders and trainers
  • Antifa street tacticians
  • Black Lives Matters leaders/trainers
  • BLM street tacticians
  • Media cheerleaders
  • Congressional cheerleaders
  • Academic cheerleaders
  • Rioters/looters
Photo by Life Matters on

At first glance, this broad spectrum of participants appeared to coalesce spontaneously, and their 2020 surge seemed to be part of a chaotic process. But this impression can’t be entirely true. And in the fullness of time, we’ll find out if it’s even remotely true. Certainly, some level of training and preparation occurred in advance.

Either way, the coalition has a structure because its members sort spatially. Therefore, an assessment of its constituent parts can be informative.

Left Pole ……

The kneeler/prostraters are a subcategory within the general population of peaceful protestors. They join such efforts out of a desire to “do the right thing.” Their position near the left pole indicates a focus on matters of conscience, almost to the exclusion of pragmatic concerns.

The street-fillers mirror many of the same characteristics as the kneelers-on-command. They’re typically drawn to protests based on moral concerns. This is the group the media attempts to highlight, as opposed to those with violent or looting tendencies, because the peaceful protesters participate for idealistic reasons.

Some of these positions extend slightly upward along the upper left quadrant. The higher a position sits in relation to the horizontal axis, the more a person’s pragmatic concerns will mix with those of the conscience. Thus, some of these members will pursue more savvy interactions with, and questioning of, the movement’s mid-level leaders …… while their brethren near the left pole follow along more gullibly.

Top of Circle ……

The other boundary of this movement is defined by a group with very different motivations. The anonymous financiers and instigators are focused only on the pragmatic concerns of centralized power. They elicit little concern for questions of conscience.

Entities at the top pole rarely show their faces or divulge their resources. In foreign interventions, the Central Intelligence Agency takes on the role of anonymous financier/instigator, leading to conspiracy theories (either true or false) that they’re involved in America’s 2020 strife. Allegations of interference by “the Russians” – a foreign central governmental entity – are a similar conspiracy theory.

Whether or not the CIA, Russians, George Soros, or some other entity is involved, the top-down training of the protest organizations requires funding and expertise from a deep-pocketed source. Unfortunately, no investigative reporters have shined the light of transparency on these actors.

The group slightly to the left of the top pole is a mix of democratic governors, congressional cheerleaders, Antifa/BLM leaders, and other prominent members of top-down institutions. The spread of their positions near the top of the circle varies based on individual roles, with those favoring centralized control residing higher in the quadrant.

Mid-Quadrant ……

So, both boundaries of the movement have been defined. Remaining positions fit into the quadrant’s middle region ……

It has been said that the allied army won World War II on the backs of its sergeants. It relied heavily on the astute judgment of those on-the-ground decision-makers. In 2020, the Antifa and BLM street tacticians attempt to perform a similar role. They use the strategic directives of the movement’s upper circle leaders to guide the actions of those closer to the left pole.

We’ve seen today’s tacticians brandish the most effective tool of this conflict: the megaphone. It directs crowd energy in much the same way that a sergeant directs kinetic firepower. Instead of artillery and bullets, f-bombs and university-approved rhetoric are employed.

Some tacticians have no doubt recruited a demographic that differs greatly from the idealistic, conscience-centered left pole members. This other group participates in vandalism and violence. Here again, there has been little journalistic curiosity about the instigators, their methods of inciting violence, and their financing.

Toward the top of mid-quadrant are sympathetic mayors. But they’re not oriented as high as a governor or or other high office holder. Activist city council members orient slightly below mid-quadrant. And academic apologists span the entire zone.

The Upper Left Quadrant ……

So, the woke protest/riots are best understood spatially. They invoke the upper left quadrant’s full spectrum. Those who lean more toward centralization of power will lean less toward liberal values …… and vice versa.

The above diagrams represent the base case condition for a coalition. If the edges fray, to involve less than a full quadrant, the movement will fizzle. Similarly, if membership can be expanded beyond the confines of the quadrant, the odds of permanent societal change increase.

Where Is Julian Assange?

Julian Assange is still incarcerated in Britain on the date of this post. Thus, by all conventional metrics, Belmarsh Prison must be considered the where of his existence.

But Assange’s legal problems are part of a larger story. A different kind of where created his current situation. And that other location will influence some key decisions the rest of us must make about America’s future.

Here’s a representation of his spot in GPS World ……

Meanwhile, another aspect of reality – our collective political framework – shows a different location for Assange. This other locale seems to matter more to him than the physical spaces he has occupied.

Julian Assange is not a left-right figure; he doesn’t fit on the traditional political model. Instead, his worldview orients vertically …… along the power axis. He has chosen a citizen-empowering position at the lowest point on the political circle.

Through boldness and tenacity, the Wikileaks founder has staked out – and held – an important new piece of political real estate. When he established this position on the barren frontiers of twenty-first century partisanship, the surrounding area was largely devoid of inhabitants. But that has begun to change.

In one of life’s ironies, Assange’s efforts to pioneer new partisan territory have been boosted by his sworn adversaries: the deep state actors “diametrically opposed” to his position. The more these avatars of centralized power constrain his physical location, the more they call attention to his groundbreaking political location.

This battle, instigated by Assange, has also shifted the political ground under his adversaries’ feet. State (and corporate) bureaucrats can no longer hide behind the false “centrist” label, protected by the cover of a one-dimensional model. Instead, they’ve been forced out onto open terrain, where their centralizing tendencies are on full display.

Assange and his associates model the qualities of citizen empowerment: a transparent sharing of information, flatness and flexibility in human organization, and true social & intellectual diversity …… among other characteristics.

In contrast, the deep state actors conform to the dictates of top-down power ….. tightly controlled “classified” information, deeply hierarchical organizations, and enforced uniformity in action & opinion.

These characteristics can help each of us to understand where our own partisan choices reside on the circle. For example, if you stridently support Assange, your position will be located in one of the lower quadrants. In contrast, those who dislike him will reside near the circle’s top.

A significant minority of partisans will be ambivalent about the power axis, though. Those folks, who orient primarily toward their values choices, reside near the left and right poles. They’ll question whether Assange’s agenda can have much impact on their hopes for the culture. His position will seem too far away to be of much relevance to the wokesters and evangelicals of America.

But the partisans of those locations will still be required to plot a path on the power axis …… and the differences between their two choices are stark. If they choose to adopt the qualities of citizen-sufficiency, Americans will forge hard-won alliances between people of differing values. In contrast, if they continue to leverage centralized power on behalf of their beliefs, America’s cultural conflicts will devolve into a zero-sum civil war.

Julian Assange has sacrificed his personal freedom, his financial future, his family life, and even his supersized libido to protect his position on the political circle. His example places a stake in the ground. It draws that line in the sand. He compels us to consider a fundamental question: which pole of the power axis will establish a better future for our society?