Vladerag's Blog











Much has been made in the past few years, and in particular, this election cycle, about the virility and amount of attacks launched on canidates characters.  Each year, the attacks only get worse and worse.  From both sides of the aisle and within the parties, even those of the same political affiliation shamelessly attack each other.  When pressed, the aggresors will always say they are pointing to flaws in character that are unaceptable for civil servants.

Instead of putting forth real ideas, they launch political attacks, and even when someone does have an idea, it is usually acompanied by a jab at someone else.  “Here is my solution, unlike my opponent.”

It needs to end, but cant it?

After all, character is one of the most important factors to voters in determening who to vote for.  Consider that President Obama’s biggest advantage last election was that he could make people love him, and that Mitt Romney’s largest flaw is that he can’t.  Of course, if you cant make people love you, you can make them hate your opponent.

Some have tried, to a certain extent, to avoid personal attacks.  John Mccain was noted for taking a long time to attack then canidate Obama on the topics of Reverend Jeremiah Wright and Bill Ayers, although both would normally be sinking assocations for any canidate.

Some political commentators, generally the conservative leaning ones, say that may have been a key issue in his loss.

In all of this, one has to wonder, what does it say about current politics that some analysts believe the election was decided, not on policy, but on how far someone was willing to go to destroy someones character?

Civility in politics is a dream, but it doesnt have to be.  However, it cant be in the current polarized enviorment.  So to realize this dream, we need to change the enviorment.  To do that, we need to find the cause of the polarization.  Through repeated elections, we have seen the rise of the extreme in the house and senate.  The pendulem of power swings from one party to the other every so many years, but with each swing it gains strength.  In part, this is caused by gerrymandering, a process through which those currently elected redraw the voting districts to give themselves the advantage.  But the other part is much closer to home, because it is us, the voters.

Increasingly, even dinner table conversations have become hostile in the area of politics.  We, as a nation, have dug into our current political beleifs and refuse to budge.  And because our government reflects the wants and needs of the people, it too has become more polarized.

But people are not just born conservative or liberal, nor are they normally born bellicose and stubborn.  We are born with, and taught in childhood, to be empathetic, polite, and listen.  So what happened?  How did our views on each and every issue begin to radically differ from each other?

This polarization is driven by something, and that something is easy to discern.  The media has polarized the public, which has polarized the politicians, who have creared the ammunition for the media to repeat the cycle once again.

Much as FOX and MSNBC would have you believe they are fair, they are not.  As much as they would like you to believe the other are demons, they are not.  For their efforts, they are made rich, and assured constant business.  The news is not real reporting anymore, mearly analysis of the latest political scandal.  How what each person said, how they said it, and who they said it too will affect their chances in Novemeber.

It is like high school all over again, except with your money, freedom, and safety at stake.

How can anyone meet eye-to-eye when they believe the other is misinformed, or worse, spining the truth?  We dont need fair and balanced, or the place for politics, we need what actually hapened, if it actually matters.  Fair and balanced is being unbiased and being the place for politics means actually telling what is their without analysis.

But this dream is not impossible, despite how it may seem.  These news stations are businesses, and they will respond to what there audiences want.  Vote with your remote, and watch only the most pure news reporting they have, instead of their analysis shows.

Once we have civility in politics, we can have true discourse and real solutions.  Just imagine what that would be like, and how prosperous we could become.

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