What is factional politics or factionalism?

faction noun fac·​tion | \ ˈfak-shən  \
Definition of faction

1: a party or group (as within a government) that is often contentious or self-seeking : CLIQUE
//The committee soon split into factions.
2: party spirit especially when marked by dissension
//faction, or the irreconcilable conflict of parties— Ernest Barker

How does that differ from identity politics? Well, the dictionary does have a definition.

identity politics
noun, plural in form but singular or plural in construction
Definition of identity politics

: politics in which groups of people having a particular racial, religious, ethnic, social, or cultural identity tend to promote their own specific interests or concerns without regard to the interests or concerns of any larger political group
//Identity politics took its modern form during the second half of the last century. It emerged as an emancipatory mode of political action and thinking based on the shared experience of injustice by particular groups—notably blacks, women, gays, Latinos and American Indians.— Orlando Patterson
//Although the UCLA center’s standards promoted rigorous history, they set off a major culture war because of their relentless emphasis on identity politics.— Diane Ravitch
//Identity politics is contemporary shorthand for a group’s assertion that it is a meaningful group; that it differs significantly from other groups; that its members share a history of injustice and grievance; and that its psychological and political mission is to explore, act out, act on and act up its group identity.— Catharine R. Stimpson
//A number of critics have viewed her work through a lens of identity politics, taking her to be some sort of oracle of Muslim womanhood.— Lauren Collins

These days what we call identity politics is just a new form of factional politics. However, instead of the have-nots and the haves just warring over the our nation’s material wealth, we now war over every aspect of the content of our culture.

Look at what the politicians behind the identity politics movement advocate. The vast majority of White Anglo-Saxon Protestants (WASPS) and much of the rest of our nation still support the traditional family, oppose abortion, disdain Socialism, reverence constitutional rights for all Americans, favor an America first foreign policy that avoids optional conflicts, and so forth. Yet all these values are under heavy assault. Why? Identity politics. When we allow ourselves to be divided into endless identity groups, we can be easily divided.

Consider some of the major identity groups. Many Muslims, Hispanics, blacks, women, homosexuals, the disabled, and so forth are social Conservatives. Yet in a nation with relatively few Muslims, Hispanics, blacks, women (not actually a minority), homosexuals, the disabled, and so forth; Muslims, Hispanics, blacks, women (not actually a minority), homosexuals, the disabled, and so forth see themselves as threaten minorities, and they tend to feel isolated. So these racial, religious, ethnic, social, or cultural, sexual, gender, handicapped, and whatever groups tend to gravitate to those politicians who appear most willing to “protect” them. Identity politics thus serves is a sort of protection racket, a rather silly protection racket.

How gullible are we? How difficult is to defend the rights of someone from a person who isn’t even interested in trying to attack them? Doesn’t it seem like that all a politician has to do is convince us someone is denying us something we want, something we can be convinced we “deserve?”

What is the trick? How do politicians convince us to be so stupid? Instead of seeking the best interests of our family, friends, neighbors, communities, and nation; we just seek to get “what’s mine,” but that is the way a two-year old thinks.

Identity politics is an empty promise. Since almost nobody is trying to discriminate against Muslims, blacks, women, homosexuals, the disabled, and so forth, those who who divide us by “identity” must propose outrageous nonsense like same-sex “marriage” and fake “hate crimes” to stir up animosity. Thus, because of fears engendered by demagogues, blacks, Muslims, Hispanics, and other minorities often vote for politicians who appear to be caring and compassionate, but advocate policies that tear apart families, cheapen our culture, waste money, and reward rich donors.

Demagoguery is nothing new. Aristotle ( wrote about it thousands of years ago. Identity politics is just is its newest manifestation. To fight it, we must do what Jesus Christ would have us do, love our neighbor as we love our self.

This entry was posted in Citizen Responsibilities, culture, religion and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.


  1. Tom,

    Another issue, other than rich and poor divisiveness, Identity politics is spawning racial bigoty.
    I recommended everyone take DNA tests in a post to perhaps reveal to some bigoted or angry people might find out that they have a percentage of the same genes in their persona.

    That approach may not work for political divisions though,

    I seem to remember in the last civil war that Abraham Lincoln stated: “a house divided against itself cannot stand.”

    Maybe politicians need to start thinking about the future of the Nation rather than just their future of being reelected. Let’s face it, politicians are elected to represent the people that voted them into office. If the voters are being either bigoted or angry, that doesn’t give politicians license to fuel their anger.

    Politicians take oaths of office to “that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So, help me, God.

    In other words, politicians who identify with racial groups are not supposed to be fueling bigotry and anger to incite their voters to create divisiveness in the Nation. They are supposed to “stand” and unite rather than “divide” our Nation, in my opinion.,

    Sounds good huh, only wish it was a reality.

    Regards and good will blogging.

    • Tom Salmon says:

      We get what we vote for. To get better people we must vote less selfishly.

      • Tom,

        Would voters vote selflessly if politicians did not selflessly bribe them with promises the Nation cannot fund?
        For example, how are all of the promises in the news like free collage, medicare for all, 2 trillion dollar infrastructure etc. etc, going to be funded. Even if one per centers pay a 90 percent tax rate, it won’t add up.

        In other words, if politicians really fulfilled their oaths to faithfully discharge their duty (how to fund), instead of making a bunch of promises to selfishly get elected, voters would not be tempted, persuaded, or conned, duped, into voting for the conman politicians.

        “without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So, help me God.”

        Takes two to tangle. We are 22 trillion in debt, how much longer before the Pyramid scheme topples?

        What ever happened to the idea of sacrificing for a while to atone (payback) for our sins (debt)?

        Regards and good will blogging.

        • Tom Salmon says:


          There will always be people who will promise whatever they think will get them elected. There will always be people who believe the lies they want to believe. Because it frees us from sin, only the Truth offered by Jesus Christ sets us free.

          • Tom,

            I hear your message and agree. Unfortunately, a lot of politicians do not want to either hear or face the truth about understanding the oaths of office they swear when they take office, in my opinion.

            The main difference between a politician in office and the public they serve is the oath a politician takes.

            Once they take an oath, they are swearing to uphold the Constitutions etc, which they become responsible to God to uphold.

            In other words there is a difference in responsibility when a person takes and oath…..

            If interested in the proverbial wisdom on oaths, check out a previous post and substitute ‘Construction’ instead of ‘King.’


            Regards and good will blogging.

            Regards and good will blogging.

Comments are closed.