*I strive

*Very possible

*Unexpected fast motions

*Just nod your head

*Please, no autographs

*Run to Wal Mart

*Before I do anything brash....

*Stripper to the pole

*Keep your eye on the ball

*Clever little show

1. I ask you to do one effing thing
2. Did you?
3. The socks betray him
4. There will be none of that
5. Leave notes in his shirt pocket
6. Trained in the gentle art
7. Put me in coach
8. Our species may, in fact, survive
9.Swarm Swarm
10.During the wooing
11.BUT not private enough
12.The bottomless appetite
13.The first time we forget
14.This is a nice litmus test
15.To get the ball rolling
16.She invited you back to her place for coffee
17.Mary Magdalene or Eva Braun
18.It will only smell and make you queasy

   Monday, November 14, 2005

Enough, already

Is political debate dead?

Has the mini-stump speeches passed off as Presidential debates coupled with the extremist rantings on FOX and CNN left us with no real political discussion?

Unless I am talking with Dan, Allison, Jules, A* or Mr. Drinker (all whom often disagree with me politically), I find any talk of politics often spins into:

1. Ranting
One or both parties stop listening. One talks, the other just waits to talk. Neither addresses the ideas or questions of the other.

2. Name calling
Liberal and Conservative are not bad words. True measured debate about issues is now replaced with labeling. Pinko, communist, Neocon, blah, blah.

3. Exposure of evil
Talk about policy and procedure is reduced to talk about intent. If you think the Head Start program is not effective then you must not only be against children learning.... you probably eat fried baby feet for breakfast. If you think the war in Iraq might be better executed you not only don't support the troops, the only person who hates America more than you is running North Korea. Enough, already. Learn to separate talk of policy from talk of intent.

4. No regard for language
Anything someone thinks is important becomes a "right" - the word "right" no longer has meaning. The "right" to health care, education, or to carry a concealed handgun. Couple this with simple things like separation of church and state and personal property rights being at best warped and it worse ignored...

5. Selective acceptance
Facts are fact if they support your position. They are unreliable and malleable if they support a view you disagree with.

6. Silliness
Extremists like Pat Robertson, Nancy Pelosi, Howard Dean and Tom Delay are dictating the landscape of the political debate.

7. Change of subject
If someone on the other side starts to make sense there is no need to listen, consider or even re-think. Just start talking about something else. There is no reason to have your answers match the question asked.

8. Preaching to the converted
Some only talk politics with people that agree with them already. What a great way to expand and learn!

there are 8 doodles

At 10:05 AM, Blogger A* said...

Oh oh I can add one!

You are not what you read. If someone points out an author to you, rather than insulting <the person reading, read the author you disagree with while supplying one who supports your point of view.

Then tell the person they hate humanity.

At 11:02 AM, Blogger AnonymousCoworker said...

I disagree with #6. I don't believe Pelosi and Dean are any more responsible for extrremism then I believe Delay is. Pat Robertson, on the other hand, is a different story.

Though our elected representatives get more time on the air than your average US citizen, they don't spend nearly as much time on the air as professional pundits like Franken and Limbaugh and O'Reilly and Maher. I believe that the pundits are responsible for lowering the and dictating the debate. The elected officials only provide the subject matter.

At 3:02 PM, Blogger Dan said...

I'm touched that you think I don't play those tricks when we discuss politics.
It's just that we're usually a few cocktails in when we have these discussions, so it's harder for you to pick up on them. But in all actuality, I haven't a freaking clue what I'm talking about.

At 4:40 PM, Blogger December said...

Kilroy was here!

Oh, and I agree with you. What little my friends do know about politics, it is what they have overheard their parents say, which more often than not is one of the eight there. Which makes it very difficult to argue a point, when they know absolutely nothing about a subject.

At 4:50 PM, Blogger Kira said...

I agree with you, Hof. Most of what you've pointed out is incorporated into the discussions before the argument essay my 101's have to write. I want them to address the ISSUES...imagine that!

December also brings up another side issue that pisses me off: "Mommy and daddy said so, so I believe it too!" ARRRGGHHH! People do that one as much with religion as they do politics, and BOTH annoy me.

Also: people who spout their opinions based only on one source. That irritates me because one source is often incorrect, leaves out the whole picture, or deliberately pulls something out of context due to the political leanings of the publication/tv show/etc. But if you look at numerous sources--preferably from both "sides" of the fence--you can get a more clear, accurate picture on which to draw your ideas.

At 5:00 PM, Blogger VegasGustan said...

I love fried baby feet for breakfast. The trick is to use tempura....and some lovely papaya jelly.


At 5:22 PM, Blogger Mel said...

I don't know what everyone else said, but I'm with Vegas. 'Cept I like Strawberry jelly...

At 6:03 PM, Blogger Mo said...

amen. its ridiculously silly how political discussion has turned into nothing more than battles of rhetorical hot flashes. however, i think that neoconservatism can be fully blamed for this de-evolution. dubya starts throwing out a bunch of verbal hogwash like "the power of human freedom" and "culture of life" which sound great but dont mean a damn thing, people start believing in the hot air, and start to completely ignore the real problems facing America.


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