I’ve been writing this blog since January 2003. I try my level best to steer clear of politics because the field is based almost entirely on office-seekers saying things that “feel” good to potential voters.
However, they’re also doing it for money, but even in spite of this fact, I’m still going to keep things on a positive note by calling the process “honorable pandering.”
But pandering—honorable or otherwise—gets politicians nowhere if too many people view themselves as being “conned.” So, the secret has always been keeping the emphasis on what’s in it for the voters, rather than what’s in in for the politicians.
FDR was in his third term when I was born—yes, I’m an oldie. I come from the “had-to-be-21-to-vote” era. But my point, though, isn’t my age; it’s my experience.
Elective politics has always been a hard-nosed, often personally vicious and sometimes downright dirty business. But once elections concluded, both, the winners AND losers—for the most part—knuckled down to the business of getting stuff done.
Things began changing about 20-years ago, though. Civil discourse began to diminish during George W. Bush’s second term, although the Congress did at least attempt to maintain some degree of pretense. But even that pretense has all but completely disappeared under Barack Obama—at least it seems so to me.
In all my years of observation, I’ve never seen it this bad. I think that some degree of raw racism plays a role, but I don’t think that it’s a major one. In my mind, it seems more as though people have become more fearful of change than they have of bigotry.
But the fact is that things have changed for the worse, and they’ve changed big time!
Nowadays, people with 3-digit IQs and average faculties for making simple objective observations soon conclude that respectful political discourse and equitably workable compromises are all but dead in this country.
Over the past several decades—the last two, in particular—intuitive logic has almost completely supplanted intellectual and emotional reason as a means of arriving at our political solutions. It hasn’t worked; nor will it ever work.
Various segments of Fox News and MSNBC have been raising “pandering to the oblivious” to ever new heights of mindless ignorance. Many of their viewers—although not all of them—have made, and they continue making, virtually all of their qualitative political choices based on nothing more than what “feels” right.
And in many cases, even after counter-intuitive reality has smacked them between their eyes with demonstrable quantitative evidence to the contrary, their ONLY response has been (it still is) to counter everything by reverting to simple-minded partisan hissy fits.
It’s what makes it a waste of time for even well balanced people, endowed with generous portions of intellectual and emotional stamina (as opposed to the hopelessly clueless) to pontificate about “what the country needs.”
We’ll be stuck with the same recycled two-dimensional politicians as long as the superficial branch of our electorate—both sides—continues to worship at the Cathedral of Partisan Ideology, AND for as long as we keep tolerating a “pretty-boy/girl” news media that’s more entranced by passing off innuendo-laden ambiguities and hollow “gotchas” as genuine news substance.
This country is, and it has been for many years, in dire need of some solid political leadership, and whether that leadership comes from middle-Right or middle-Left is immaterial. Either way, we need candidates—in all THREE branches of government—who possess the leadership capabilities and wisdom that transcend IDEOLOGY.
As it now stands, American politics has been reduced to a seemingly endless verbal pissing contest between Internet forum-savvy amateurs regurgitating vacuous guile—many of them incapable of original thought—and the slowly, but ever-fading voice of genuine political substance.
And egged on by multitudes of partisan radio and TV pundits motivated by nothing more than viewer ratings and advertising dollars, vacuous guile is winning big time.
It’s doing what it does best; it’s dragging reason down to its own (vacuous guile’s) level of ignorance, and beating it with experience!