Seeking Global Coherence: The Waxing and Waning of Trust in Government Media

Seeking Global Coherence: The Waxing and Waning of Trust in Government Media

DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-8884-0.ch001
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The historical focus on relationships based on the trust and respect of people—initially family and then moving into business associates—has become idea focused, with value built on respect for and resonance with ideas. Simultaneously, trust based on integrity and consistency over time has given way to instant virtual relationships, often built on ONE BIG IDEA, whether it is true or not. This is the concept of Idea Locking. This chapter asks: Is there something deeper at play here? Trust in government media has waxed and waned with changes in administrations, yet the continued government focus on transparency, participation, and collaboration are attributes embraced by the Millennials, the new generation of decision-makers moving into positions of power, who bring with them an inclusive culture embracing coherence. A true global generation, it is this technology-literate group that seeks connection and who, if they can be reached, offers the potential to create a global culture of coherence.
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In a connected world, there is the interweaving of thought, which both enables the emergence of innovation and the creation of forces. While humans have always been social creatures, with physical mechanisms developed in the brain which enable learning through social interactions (Bennet, 2018; Johnson, 2006)—global connectivity and the Internet have raised social networking to an art form embraced by budding adults in developed and developing countries around the world. Physical proximity is no longer an essential factor.

This interweaving of thought builds on Jung’s theory of the collective unconscious and Sheldrake’s concept of formative causation. Through morphic resonance our thoughts have the capacity to influence other people, making it more likely for others to think in the same way we are thinking. In this culture of connection, add Kant’s categorical imperative, an unconditional moral law, and thoughts as well as words and actions become a human responsibility.

Yet this is not easy. This expanding culture brings with it positive and negative aspects. These include immediate communication, instant gratification, spontaneous judgment, idea resonance, collaborative entanglement, virtual transparency, political positioning, ephemeral drama, artificial intimacy, cognitive neurogaming, intoxication and addiction, catfishing/Internet predators, and so on.

As early as 1869, Matthew Arnold wrote about the importance of culture, which “helps us, by means of its spiritual standard of perfection, to regard wealth as but machinery, to really perceive and feel that it is so.” Arnold could not have imagined the culture of connection that was to occur over a century later. Still, he goes on to say that if it weren’t for the purging effect of culture on the human mind, the whole world—both present and future—would “inevitably belong to the Philistines, people who believe most that our greatness and welfare are proved by our being very rich, and who most give their lives and thoughts to becoming rich” (Arnold, 1869, pp. 28-29). The term philistinism refers to anti-intellectualism, which is a social attitude that both undervalues and despises art, beauty, spirituality and intellect (Merriam-Webster, 1962, p. 1099). Art, beauty, spirituality and intellect, the very elements that connect the hearts and minds of humanity.

And then, living in our todays—still in the infancy of this culture of connection—the world imploded upon an already struggling humanity, framed in the context of political untruths planted in increasingly volatile life choices, eco-system challenges woven into a fabric of inattention and disbelief, and an invisible global pandemic challenging individual perceptions of freedom and pulling at the heartstrings of hundreds of millions of families. It is at such times that government “for the people” is needed and called upon to serve. Yet, trust in the rhetoric of government, and the actions driven by that rhetoric, has deteriorated as it has increasingly been used for personal purposes by those in power, who are often the very representatives who have sworn to serve the people.

In this chapter, the foundation is firmly set for a deeper discussion of trust through considering common definitions of core concepts. Trust is then explored in terms of trust of self before diving into social networking and expanding the model of idea resonance to encompass—and perhaps help explain—the visible shifts occurring in the world, followed by an in-depth example of the waxing and waning of trust in government media. The shift in consciousness underway is explored in terms of both external events and in terms of the internal beliefs and values embedded in a generational culture shift.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Resonance: A knowledge exchange where each individual builds upon the knowledge of the other, greatly enhancing the growth of knowledge. This is only possible when there are common learning points such as goals, characteristics, and histories that expedite the understanding of the information being shared.

Knowledge: The capacity (potential or actual) to take effective action (Bennet et al., 2018). This includes both the information used to inform a decision to act and the process of the actions taken. While knowledge consists of understanding, meaning, insight, creativity, intuition, judgment, and the ability to anticipate the outcome of actions, each instance of application is context-sensitive and situation-dependent.

CUCA: Represents accelerating Change, rising Uncertainty, and increasing Complexity combined with the human response of Anxiety. “Time accelerates. Distance shrinks. Networks expand. Information over-whelms. Interdependencies grow geometrically. Uncertainty dominates. Complexity boggles the mind. Such is the environment and the context within which current organizations must compete, survive, and thrive” (Bennet & Bennet, 2004, p. 5).

Idea Locking: A strong mental-emotional “absolute” position/reaction stimulated by arousal occurring in a turbulent threatening environment where an individual perceives a person and the idea(s) they represent as having the power to break through these threats.

Information: A degree of organization expressed by non-random patterns (Stonier, 1997, 1990; Bennet & Bennet, 2018). Stonier (1997) proposed that “organization is the physical expression of a system containing information” (p. 14). In this context, organization is the existence of non-random patterns of particles and energy fields, which are the sub-units comprising any system. Thus, organization can be observed in the material world as a physical phenomenon in space and time, with information becoming “the connective tissue of the universe” (Bennet et al., 2020a, p. 25).

Transparency: An operational value. Being candid or open, easily seen through or detected, and free from guile ( American Heritage Dictionary , 2006).

Coherence: The “wholeness and global order, where the whole is greater than the sum of its individual parts”, which can be considered a “clarity of thought, speech and emotional composure” (McCraty, 2015, p. 24). A culture of coherence brings that clarity into the whole grounded on the recognition of connection, the global and individual pursuit of truth, a high respect for diversity, and heart-centered cooperation and collaboration.

Trust: Reliance on the integrity, ability or character of a person, thing, or process (Bennet & Bennet, 2010). A “feeling”. Virtual trust is (a) trust among individuals and groups communicating virtually, (b) trust of the ideas being communicated (idea resonance) and (c) trust in the technology used to communicate (security, reliability, accurate transmission).

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