Finger Pointing and Fault-Finding
Obama claims it’s all Bush’s fault. Romney claims it’s Obama’s fault. Before then, Reagan blamed Carter. The only change is the direction of the finger and the intended target. It has been happening since the United States of America was a colony on the edge of the explored world. Finger –pointing and fault-finding are an American way of life, and if we don’t steer away from the bickering, our nation will founder in cynicism and despair.
I want to be the first American to support any candidate that refrains. That’s right: Someone who has the backbone and character to stand up for what they believe, and has real solutions to our problems. We don’t ask for much, and our elected officials owe us that one prerequisite to their continued leadership. Solutions.
Telling us that the problem is someone else’s fault will never satisfy. We need to have an honest confrontation with ourselves, and we need to tell them what we want. If we wait for elected officials to pull us out of this quicksand of despair, ( a concept similar to saving a drowning man by dunking his head underwater while you think about what you should do to save him), we are doomed from inaction.
This idea is a quantum shift in our national politics, and our elected officials are not going to appreciate us citizens interrupting their re-election efforts to address important things that are happening to us and our families. But, persist we must. We’re rapidly entering survival mode. When our nation enters the realm where our survival depends on our actions in solving the problems that confront us, we Americans do great things. Always have, always will. But sitting back and watching the chosen ones (That’s us.) be led by buffoons (That’s most of the people we elected to lead us.) is destructive and disastrous, and that is where we find ourselves. The rest of our elected officials, and the wannabees who are audacious enough to try to knock an incumbent off of the exalted perch to which we voters elevated them, don’t have a clue.
Politics is the only profession where someone with no job qualifications can spend other people’s money to attain a job that pays less than the cost of getting there. We don’t look at qualities of leadership. We look at their hair, and their ability to work a crowd. We don’t spend much time looking at their accomplishments in life before seeking office. We don’t even listen to their speeches. We look at their body language and how many times they laugh at serious issues discussed in a debate.
We choose to get our information from CNN, MSNBC, or Fox News, who digitize that portion of information that aligns with their approach to life in America, or diametrically opposes it, to feed the talk shows as the subject of the day. Most of what becomes news is the gaffes and gotchas derived from hour- long speeches and debates. Much of the information we need to decide who will be elected is not deemed newsworthy.
We live in an age where we receive a continuous loop of information that is delivered electronically to our TVs, computers, and cell phones 24/7. Wherever we are, we are bombarded by information. The line between information and misinformation has blurred and obscured our ability to discern, and most Americans have reached the point of non-belief. Belief and misbelief have retired to the past. Non-belief is the product of too much information. We are at the point where we receive the newsfeed, but have no chance to evaluate it before we are bombarded with new and potentially conflicting information.
We are becoming information zombies from the overload of finger-pointing and fault-finding, and we are starving for a problem-solver who can lead.
If a voter during this election cycle chooses to receive the bombardment that is anti-Republican, they can tune in to MSNBC, or go online with the Huffington Post, or do it the old-fashioned way by reading the New York Times. If the voter is more inclined to receive the bombardment from the right, they can choose Fox News, the Drudge Report, or the Wall Street Journal. They all claim to be fair and balanced bombardiers, but who are they kidding?
The biggest source of misinformation in American politics after mass media is the political poll. Both the media and the political campaigns themselves use polls to determine the issues that the voters are interested in having resolved. A politician’s position on abortion, the economy, foreign affairs, jobs, and a multitude of other issues are thrown to the voter over landline phones, usually during the hour when the pollsters know you will be home; dinnertime. The opinions of people who hang up so their dinner won’t get cold don’t get counted.
We are at the mercy of those strange individuals who still have landline phones and are willing to have their dinner spoiled by strangers, and who are willing to spend their family time interrupted by strangers asking questions that suggest a particular answer. Even worse are the robo-polls. Those people are taking a multiple-choice test and talking to a computer instead of spending time with their families, even though they won’t be graded at the end.
What if all of the polls are wrong? The robo- surveys either miss voters in cell-phone-only households entirely (We Ask America) or rely on a small number of cell-phone-only interviews conducted with an internet panel of voters likely to vote a certain way (Rasmussen). Roughly one in three households in the United States do not have a landline and only have cell phones. The pollsters also have failed to share the number of hang-ups or people who screen their calls so that they don’t have to waste their time answering a poll.
The opinions of people who detest polls are not being counted, but the pollsters will take the slanted and biased responses of that strange group who enjoy being polled, and wave the results like a banner of truth. The problem is, those results are meaningless. Poll results will reflect the opinions of the poll makers, not the poll takers. They designed the questions. Those who refuse to participate entirely in the process have kept their opinions to themselves, and they are not counted. In today’s world, even the right to vote in privacy for our candidate of choice has become a thing of the past. We have exit polls, too.
When you have heard from the multitude of the unqualified who will be running for office between now and Election Day, and the press and the polls choose the issues which they want you to be distracted to, who are you going to vote for? You could pick the snappy dresser, the one with good hair or the one the pollsters and the media told you to vote for. Then again, you could vote for the candidate who stands up, and says, “This is how we’re going to solve this problem.”
Our prosperity and our ultimate survival depend on your deciding vote, America.
Tags: Politics , Opinion , Election , Citizen Journalism
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