Our Political System is Broken for the Same Reason Our Relationships End

wedding rings on american flag

(Image/Inspired Acorn)

NOTE: I wasn’t planning to post today, and certainly not about politics, but my response to a comment on yesterday’s post—which had a headline I think many people misunderstood for the EXACT SAME REASONS our political climate is such a mess—turned into a thousand words. So I figured, what the hell. Linds wrote in a comment that the nature of a politician’s job doesn’t allow for she or he to be trustworthy. My reply turned into the following.

My commitment to fairness runs deep.

I reject the notion that politicians can’t be trustworthy. But I accept my perceived reality that they typically are not.

Because of the system being what it is, it’s impossible for non-billionaires to win elections without lots of financial backing.

That forces people who need political funding to sometimes compromise their principles for “the greater good,” convincing themselves they can’t do any good from the sidelines, so compromising 5-10% of their values in order to achieve the 90% once they’re in office is worth it.

But then, after they win election, they have all these ideas about what to change in order to make things better for the people who supported them.

But with every potential change comes some type of negative consequence to politicians’ financial stakeholders, and a bunch of politicians fighting against change because it’s “good” for their re-election, and a bunch of politicians fighting against it because they play for the other team—and winning elections is more important than actually legislating!—and a bunch of politicians on the same team who won’t support change for various political and financial reasons.

Getting 51% of elected officials to agree on something that directly affects American lives, or affects them emotionally, or affects the financial systems in some way is an extremely tall order.

It’s funny. All humans basically want the same things: Safety, financial opportunity, good health, good education for themselves and children, and basic levels of infrastructure (roads, water, electric, law enforcement, emergency services, etc.)

The vast, vast, vast, vast, vast, vast majority of Things Humans Care About are agreed upon by most elected officials, regardless of political affiliation.

That those people will not sit down at a table together to work cooperatively to address the many things which AREN’T divisive, crushes my freaking soul.

When you build cooperative bridges, improving the 70-80% of things everyone collectively cares about, maybe everyone would stop being so shitty to one another about the divisive issues people like to scream about.

Maybe.

But in the end, the TRUTH should not be such a difficult thing to ascertain.

We have elected officials who lie because they have something to hide OR because they have something to lose.

We have media outlets who report false or incomplete information because they have a political agenda or because they’re ignorant of facts, or because they have a financial mandate to report dramatic things as quickly as possible without verifying facts.

And now we’re here.

Republican politicians are trusted by only a minority of registered Republicans, many of whom watch Fox News, read Breitbart, the National Review, NewsMax, the Daily Standard, etc.

Everyone who is not a Republican assumes the R-politician is lying, and that those media outlets are reporting misinformation to promote a conservative political agenda.

Democrat politicians are trusted only by a minority of registered Democrats, many of whom get their news from MSNBC, The Huffington Post, The Daily Beast, Daily Kos, Slate, etc.

Anyone who is not a Democrat assumes the D-politician is lying, and that the left-leaning publications are intentionally reporting misinformation OR ignoring truth in order to advance their political agenda as well.

A third group of people trust no one. They’re the most cynical of all. And I can’t think of a compelling reason why they SHOULD trust anyone.

We’re now to the point where no one can trust an elected official to be honest, nor can they trust their media outlets to be reporting rock-solid facts and truth.

Yet, we’re all confused about how TWO people with 60% disapproval ratings can end up as our two choices for president.

We turn our backs on the process most of the time, watching “Survivor” and “CSI” and “Keeping Up with the Kardashians.”

Then we all get super-interested once the national media starts covering it heavily, and we all talk about it on social media long after all the important work of CHOOSING our candidates actually takes place. So many people, not necessarily through any fault of their own, don’t really know what they’re talking about because there aren’t any places to gather reliable information.

Even the New York Times and Washington Post, which are long-time journalistic standard bearers, are no longer trustworthy to the those made uncomfortable by the Times and Post headlines.

Even IF the information is solid (many journalists are fantastic, even if big-money media is not) a person can’t realistically expect someone of an opposing political viewpoint to believe it’s coming from a place of truthful objectivity. Every major media outlet has now been labeled Right or Left.

And that means everyone spends all of their time in their preferred echo chambers, hearing and reading only the things they want to hear and read.

We need a critical mass of people to decide they want TRUTH more than they want COMFORT.

We need a critical mass of people willing to trade in CSI and the Kardashians for a lot of hard work spreading the word about people who would make amazing leaders—telling their stories effectively—and sharing them with the masses.

Republicans and Democrats (and everyone else) MUST be more committed to problem solving than they are to opposing one another and smearing people wearing different labels.

People seem more interested in winning arguments than actually accomplishing anything.

Coincidentally, that’s also why most divorce happens.

When Our Political Activism Amounts to Blocking Friends on Facebook and Only Digesting Media We Agree With For a Month Every Four Years Right Before Elections, This Will Never Change

But as in all things, I choose hope.

This shit isn’t working at all. Even if Donald Trump somehow proves to be an objectively good chief executive of the United States, there will be MILLIONS of people actively working against him, hoping he fails, spreading lies, denying whatever good might come from his decisions or initiatives, and more and more citizens will soak all that up and either grow more pissed off at the president, OR grow more pissed off at all the negativity and sabotage.

Which is EXACTLY what President Obama has dealt with for eight years.

And what President Bush dealt with before that.

And what President Clinton dealt with before that.

It’s not okay.

It’s NOT okay that this happens.

I’m in favor of spirited disagreement. I’m in favor of people with strong opinions explaining to others why they believe what they believe. But it’s as if no one knows how to do that without hating the person disagreeing with them. They take the Battle of Ideas and make it personal.

And more hate spreads.

But it’s not hard to see why this happens.

For my ENTIRE LIFE, I’ve been unable to listen to an elected official tell me something from behind a podium and trust implicitly that the information was true.

For my ENTIRE LIFE, I’ve been unable to turn on the nightly news or read a newspaper regarding something political and not assume the information was somehow politically slanted one way or another depending on the source.

Right leaners EAT UP Breitbart and Fox News and the Washington Times.

Left leaners EAT UP Daily Kos and MSNBC and the New York Daily News.

Everyone believes not Truth, but what they WANT to believe. They believe the stories that make them most comfortable. Always, always, always.

Very few of us, or the politicians we vote for, own their bullshit. Very few pursue truth even when it’s inconvenient. And very few are committed to helping people who have different wants and needs than “People Like Them.”

I don’t know how.

But if we could get people to raise their hands to accept responsibility for their laziness and pursuit of comfortable lies; and if we could get journalists to vigilantly pursue truth even when the truth works against the beliefs and candidates that make them comfortable; and if we could get enough people to understand that it’s possible to improve circumstances for EVERYONE—not just certain groups at the expense of others—then, just maybe, we have a chance.

When OUR WAY = GOOD and THEIR WAY = BAD, our relationships suffer greatly before eventually breaking. 

True in marriage.

True in all human relationships.

The root causes of our political horrors are the VERY SAME as those of our shitty marriages and broken families.

And the solutions are the same, too.

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61 thoughts on “Our Political System is Broken for the Same Reason Our Relationships End

  1. Wow Matt. You and I disagree on a few things already, but oh boy could we not be more diametrically opposed than we are on this post. So, I think this election is evidence that the system is not broken,that the system actually works, that the will of the people to make themselves heard still functions.

    I don’t want complete unity, us all on the same page. That’s too much like marching in lockstep and trying to survive in a closed, authoritarian system.

    Like

    • Matt says:

      Perhaps I didn’t explain myself very well.

      I don’t think the FUNCTION of the election is broken. In fact, all these people screaming to abolish the Electoral College scare the shit out of me.

      But if you think it’s awesome that the average American citizen has NOWHERE to turn for 100% unfiltered truth, and can’t trust elected officials to work on their behalf, and that after our presidential election, we have widespread protests and civil unrest, then you’re damn right we are diametrically opposed.

      People can disagree WITHOUT WARRING with one another.

      It’s at the very foundation of all human brokenness today.

      If you’re for widespread acrimony and fighting, and believe that’s better for humanity, then yes. We don’t agree with one another.

      Like

      • Well, the fact Americans have nowhere in government to turn for the truth, means we are forced to turn towards Faith and rely on our critical thinking skills. That’s a good thing. No one should be seeking the truth in another human being. We are called to engage our own brains. As to dissent, well dissent is patriotic. Where there is total agreement, there is also no freedom.

        Can people disagree without warring? Perhaps, but we ended slavery with war. People put their lives on the line for civil rights. The Nazis were stopped with war. Our less violent, more metaphorical wars also serve a vital purpose. Not all come conflict is a bad thing. In fact, conflict can serve a vital purpose.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Matt says:

          It’s difficult to have nuanced conversation via typewritten words, but I certainly think this is all fair and truthful.

          I don’t believe the disagreements Americans are currently having rise to the level of slavery, the Civil Rights movement, or Nazi Germany, but I get your point.

          There ARE issues where people must take stands, no matter what. And I more than understand that for many people, this election compelled them to do so.

          In the context of all we discuss on this blog, which are all the very same themes currently on display in the nation’s political discourse…

          I stand with married couples/families/love more than I stand with divorce/brokeness/hate.

          What turns married couples/families/love into divorce/brokeness/hate are the very same things dividing American citizens right now.

          THE. VERY. SAME.

          “United We Stand, Divided We Fall”

          The phrase can be traced back to the Bible and Aesop’s Fables, but in the context of the great idea that is the United States of America, it was used by founding father John Dickinson, and later Patrick Henry, and later Abraham Lincoln.

          Unity MUST rank higher than winning arguments, within the context of the UNITED States of America.

          Until people love and respect each other more than we love our belief systems?

          It’s hard to imagine a better world for our children.

          Liked by 2 people

  2. Nice. I agree with much of what you wrote here. And I enjoyed the irony that assumptions still come into play a bit even while you’re striving to get away from that. *winks*

    I’ve been making quite a study of underlying assumptions for the last several days. Even with all the stresses of it politics can be super interesting/fun to watch. People have often accused me of being a follower of Fox news. It’s just a false assumption they make. It has nothing to do with who I really am or what I really do. People have on rare occasions accused me of being a follower of the liberal media. Same thing, worthless assumption. Not often accept through generalities directed at larger audiences, but I’ve even been accused of ignoring it all for the 3-4 years in between presidential elections. That one is just as incredibly far off the mark of reality.

    But what you wrote ybefore about being hopeful is where it’s at. In the last five years I’ve experienced more than ever before a growth in how many people are becoming more willing and more able to have better, more productive, more healthy discussion than ever before. Our country reached its tipping point and we’re on the other side now. Who could be left who doesn’t understand that past models have utterly failed us? People are ready to make better things happen in future.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Rae says:

    I agree with your post but I don’t think there was a shred of possibility of it happening in this past election. Social and mainstream media clearly leaned a certain way. I hid under my bed and didn’t (couldn’t!) contribute to the conversation in fear of persecution. A lot did, but they have much bigger balls than me (metaphorically speaking of course). Close friends of mine think Trump and his supporters are racists and bigots. And it made me physically sick and nervous, and I’m like, wow…so my friends essentially hate me. Neat. *Back under the bed I crawl. I don’t know where I’m going with this (other than growing a pair and sharing my thoughts), but I do agree with you. This shit is always taken personally, everyone gets super politically charged only during election time, and we can only hear what already falls in line with our beliefs (probably a bit guilty of that myself!) It’s all a crap shoot. I hope folks give Trump a chance. I hope he does well. I pray he does well.

    *Covers head…please don’t yell at me….

    Liked by 2 people

    • Matt says:

      In the United States of America, it sickens me that you don’t feel as if you can say what you believe or which political candidates you support without feeling fear of rejection, persecution, judgment, etc.

      There is no political opinion more important to me than you being a human being worthy of being loved, respected, listened to, cared for, etc.

      If we as a society decide only to help people who agree with our political opinions, we’re doomed.

      I can’t say it enough times: The things people believe make PERFECT sense if you only take the time to UNDERSTAND how they came to believe what they did.

      Everyone’s life experiences heavily influences, if not dictates, their individual beliefs.

      Our rejection and dismissal of opposing viewpoints is what’s wrong. NOT that there are actually opposing viewpoints.

      Thank you for bravely sharing your opinions here.

      I tend to avoid political conversation, NOT because I’m afraid to tell someone what I think, but because most people demonstrate an emotional inability to treat other people the same regardless of their belief system.

      I’m no saint. I certainly get pissed off at people, and use tones I should not during disagreement.

      But when I’m not being an asshole, I try hard to live by the principle that a human being’s inherent value lies in their humanity, and NOT in their beliefs, or what they can or can’t do for me, or their skin color, or their sexual orientation, or their financial status, or their gender, or their anything.

      A person matters because he or she is a person.

      And people who disagree with us matter exactly the same as those that do.

      And all we need to demonstrate that is to love someone who disagrees with us more than we love a stranger who does.

      That alone proves that another person’s beliefs are NOT the #1 factor in how we evaluate them.

      Like

  4. Oh dear. Here’s another the interweb showed me after I paid attention to the other. It’s kind of hysterically funny the more you look at how some people get some insight into some of the factors that they have been mistaken about. But they are still absolutely certain of their superior intellect and knowledge. I had a lot of experience with that particular brand of arrogance growing up so I’m not particularly riled by it most of the time in my adult life. But I still find it funny and sometimes fascinating how some people can be so smart and at the same time so very very not smart. My parents actually let slip in front of me more than once that my brother had book smarts but not a lick of common sense, which was a very apt description of him. He was salutatorian in his high school salutatorian. He has a double major he did in three years instead of four. He’s fluent in a foreign language. He has not only a Georgetown law degree but also their international law degree. And there is where his status ends in the view of most people. Many have been utterly confused by his lack of post education success or good decision making. They’d ask after what was going on with him for years and years after that. But he is just an extreme example of a person who loved and excelled in an academic environment but sadly had many other drawbacks to effect the outcomes.

    I like to tell my driving students that a lot of how smart we are is a choice. We train ourselves on an ongoing basis to make better and better decisions or to the opposite. And it’s important to choose to develop the intelligence that can adapt to new information and do it well. It’s important to choose to develop wisdom and logic. Those things just happen to be completely separate entities from rote memorization as well as from choosing to agree with the academic elite or with what you’ve been told is the most intelligent way to think.

    http://www.vox.com/2016/4/21/11451378/smug-american-liberalism

    Like

    • Come to think of it my brother is a perfect example of how difficult it can be to communicate well when you’re so very different from another person by choice. My brothers arrogance did not play well for him socially or in our sibling relationship either. When he’d be trying to encourage me he often set me off in exactly the opposite direction from his intended goals for me, even when he was right and even when he was doing it in a better way than usual. The dynamic between us was just a mess for quite a few different reasons. And certainly not all of them were his fault.

      I absolutely hated for him to tell me he knew I could do better in school and that he’d seen my IQ scores. I never heard the compliment in my IQ being higher. I only ever heard his interference, his smug certainty that he knew what I should do, his unjust assumptions about what I chose and why, and his complete lack of understanding or concern for what my real feelings and needs and interests were.

      It’s easy to be at odds. Fixing that after the dynamic is screwed is HARD.

      Like

  5. linds01 says:

    “I’m in favor of spirited disagreement. I’m in favor of people with strong opinions explaining to others why they believe what they believe. But it’s as if no one knows how to do that without hating the person disagreeing with them. They take the Battle of Ideas and make it personal.

    And more hate spreads.”

    Thankfully there is alot of discussion in very intelligent and educated circles about how polar our society has become. Yet, I don’t know if there is a solution or an answer.

    I do blame a two party system. It creates a very decisive “us and them”.

    Part of me wants to blindfold America and present issues and then ideas related to them, -so some honest assessment of what is being said can come out, without the influence of pre-conceived bias and prejudice.

    The polarity and divide among Americans not only breeds animosity and hate, but it prevents any real engagement in the political or government process.

    People get too angry, get too emotionally upset for things to be talked about- that prevents “We the People” from actually being able to join together and talk about real ways real things can be approached.

    The party system has taken a lot of power away from the people.

    Instead we buy into what is rolling downhill, which isn’t really even about actual real issues, but about ideas and notions our higher selves agree with. (That’s not to say character isn’t important- it is extremely important, but we may demonize or deitize a person who has a different party affiliation..)

    In spite of all my words here, and a tug that says more people (including me) need to get involved in their government (that we are usually too busy for, don’t always understand and is too boring to want to)..I cannot help but wonder what sort of legitimate changes can be made that would change the course we are soo far into.

    Apart from deconstructing the government, are we going to see any real change?

    I just don’t think there is a lot of incentive to do that.

    (Random side thought #1: I think it was Plato that talked about Democracy being doomed to fail for exactly these reasons. A free public, especially one with wealth, get fat and lazy. Their education standards plummet, they make workers and not thinkers…
    I think there was also some prediction that Democratic governments tend to have a lifespan of our nations current age :/. .. I don’t really think America, or democracy, is going to come crashing down…or maybe, really- it already has and what we are left with is a sub-optimal façade. )

    Part of me believes doing the work of caring for the marginalized, those who are not being addressed by the government is where the real work and effectiveness will be seen.

    Maybe the madness and craziness will always be mad and crazy (or at least expensive and inefficient.. ) ..But the work we each do within the mad and crazy structure of our government is what is really going to count in peoples real lives.

    Maybe it’s both.

    I do think the idea of having/creating a news source that is a legitimately valid source of information would be great. If youre anything like me, you will have to live until about 200 years old in order to actually do all the great ideas you have.

    (*Random side thought #2 ..have you ever thought would happen if a Green party or Libertarian did make it into the white house?

    Congress is almost necessarily party affiliated. What happens there? Would they be forced to look at issues in a different way?

    What if we elected more state representatives that were independent? Why cant we have Green or Libertarian or Other Independent Reps. in congress and/or in Senate? Wouldn’t that be a better way to get other voices in government seats?)

    Like

    • linds01 says:

      Maybe this is what I mean by “getting involved with the government”:

      “At the end of the day, this is an opportunity to learn and grow and consider another world view. This is a wakeup call to get out of safe spaces, politically correct thinking, shatter echo chambers, and challenge yourself to consider the other side of the fence. This is an opportunity to reach out and truly learn to understand each other.”

      Like

    • linds01 says:

      This is really awesome. How do we get this to be seriously considered by our current system?

      Like

      • Good question. My path has been to just keep advocating for it in my own discussions.

        Like

        • Advocating for need to review, discuss, consider… I am not just for dumping everything about our current systems and structures of voting. I believe their are important merits to the electoral college in general that either must stay or be replaced with similar protections under a new system. Same for protecting state’s sovereignty over their own votes and voting structures.

          Liked by 1 person

          • linds01 says:

            FSM, I actually sent a message to someone I know who started a professorship at American university in D.C. He’s a big polo-sci guy who I don’t feel ashamed to be ignorant in front of. I’m sure he is familiar with STV, I’m hoping he can shed some light on the implications and what would actually need to happen to see something like this stand a real chance of being implemented.

            Like

  6. linds01 says:

    So, here’s a cra idea..what if there was a “Lets start by asking” campaign. where we post information from “the other side” in our social media feed back loops?

    For those brave enough to read “the enemies” propaganda they have to respond with a legitimate question about it, instead of arguing about it being right or wrong.

    It would be a good exercise in how to listen and learn. I have my doubts that it would go over very well, though..

    Maybe I’ll make a facebook page. ???

    Like

  7. Matt said, “People seem more interested in winning arguments than actually accomplishing anything.”

    Here’s the deal. I stopped arguing with people who wouldn’t even let me have a seat at the table, people who just called me “racist, uneducated, and rural.” I stopped arguing and I got to work. This election is the fruit of the work of people like me. People that don’t like to be labeled, ostracized, and bullied by those who would try to silence them.

    So when I read Matt’s words I wonder, “who is he speaking to?” And when I read Lind’s words about “the enemy” and “propaganda,” it just makes me sad that some people would be so disconnected from their own words,that they wouldn’t hear the disrespect behind them. I have been faithfully, patiently trying to engage with people who just want to shoot me down, dismiss me, label me

    For goodness sakes people, I tried to speak of the joys of submission and how that has contributed to a successful marriage and y’all just shut me down. That’s how it’s been in politics too, nothing but constant silencing tactics and endless dismissal.

    So when Matt says, “This shit isn’t working at all,” I find it so ironic, because actually “shit worked,”and for the first time in a long time, me and many other people in this country feel as if we finally won an argument.

    Liked by 1 person

    • linds01 says:

      IB-
      I used those words in quotation marks to discredit the words- not you, or anyone who voted for Trump.
      My whole point was for listening to someone else’s side.

      I have alot that I disagree with Trump about, and there are things that you and I obviously disagree about. I am not wrong – but neither are you.

      We see things differently. We come from different places and have had some different experiences, so of course we see the world differently.

      The thing that HAS to come out of this, and it eventually will or we will all just kill each other,
      is that we learn how to respect and care for our fellow man, even if we dont agree with them.
      (I know I am not perfect, nor even good at that- but, I am willing to try.)

      But, to be honest IB- I bet we do have some things in common. I know I have said this before, but I didn’t go to high school.

      It kicks me in the ass everyday, and even though I have 2 associates degrees, a bachelors degree and am working on a Masters, I am very well aware that I am still uneducated in some very important senses.

      I don’t think its uneducation, I think its mis-education.

      I do think living in a city involves different things that just does not accommodate hate.
      I believe if people from the rural areas lived in the city they would see the world differently.

      ….I read an article this morning. I am going to post it. You may have read it, too. It’s kind of in a hokey format,…like those “24 things you shouldn’t let your dog eat” slide articles…but it does have some interesting things to say. If you dont agree with it, maybe we can talk about it.

      http://www.cracked.com/blog/6-reasons-trumps-rise-that-no-one-talks-about/

      The demographics you listed- white, uneducated, rural…Maybe we haven’t paid enough mind to their needs.
      Maybe its cool to support Black Lives Matter if you’re white nowadays, and we don’t address the same struggles white people go through.

      I recently heard a podcast from a very prominent female black theologian who was urging us white people to “consider Appalachia”.

      I’m not saying there aren’t needs out there. I’m not saying anyone is less of a human being.

      And I certainly dont think you, I or Trump are “right” in our perspectives, but maybe collectively we can end up more right than we can divided.

      Like

    • linds01 says:

      IB- forgive me. I have spent most of the day doing crappy computer stuff, so I may have read your comment too fast.
      I don’t know if anyone ever called you “racist, uneducated or rural”- I know I did not.
      I had it in my mind that you were saying you were. – and I even got the adjectives wrong, so there you go…
      But my point is- people are always going to have opinions.
      I think even here we don’t exercise the courtesy of being sensitive to other people’s sensibilities. But, on the other hand- the discourse involves some pretty triggering issues at times.

      And The even GREATER point is that it isn’t about winning the argument, but about hopefully learning something new that will help in your marriage and family.
      Things like “the S word” may work for some and not for others. Discussing the effects of it either way shouldnt be viewed as an argument (though, I know it was)..it should just be viewed as “these are the effects of this certain circumstance that I have seen, have experienced or am fearful of”.. And that’s it. It can never be declared “right” for everyone.
      But that doesn’t mean it isn’t right for you. …
      And just so you know, I can get why there was a perception of ganging up- and I did express that to the others.
      I’m sorry all that happened.

      Like

    • Do you care about gay people ,disabled people and other minorities? tell me the truth

      Like

  8. linds01 says:

    I’m not a super articulate person at times…so, I may be better at sharing from those that are.

    Like

  9. Jonathan Pie is my latest crush. He’s a foul mouthed,vulgar, NSFW, British commenter, a lefty actually, who rather sarcasticly tells it like it is. I love him .

    I do hope I don’t offend anyone by linking to his latest video, but he really does have some good insights, foul mouth and all.

    Like

    • linds01 says:

      I think he is spot on that the of our lack of being able to talk about politics is part of the reason why we have a system that hardly anyone is ok with.

      So, what part of it did you identify with or like the most?

      Like

      • I appreciated how he spoke of silencing people, about how he couldn’t say the things he was saying in front of his own self, because all the others just like him would lynch him.

        Like

        • linds01 says:

          IB,
          I am supposed to be doing this very monotonous grid for a research paper. But, you can see where my priorities lie ..:) …

          Silencing people…that is tough, and tricky.

          In one of my previous comments I mentioned that even here we don’t demonstrate some of the usual and polite sensibilities.

          Meaning, we might be more open to saying explicitly what we think, and even outline step by step the reason why we think that way and let the peices fall where they may. .. we wouldn’t usually do that in day to day life.

          But, then- most people usually don’t ask what we think in such explicit ways.

          That may be a good thing or a bad thing. Sometimes there are some really awesome things rolling around inside our heads, but we don’t really get the chance to express them because gosh- it may be a long conversation…

          I honestly don’t think anyone was necessarily trying to silence you. I remember them asking you to clarify somethings , ect.

          I will admit I was interested in silencing someone else- but that is because SO much of what was said was personally offensive. …I really don’t want to rehash all of that, but it was more than just the ideas that were offensive (and they were- deeply, deeply offensive) it was also that he came in with such an aggressive attitude, and even more important than that he couldn’t really defend his statements with a lot of logic, or scientific proof, or anything.

          I think there were more voices that argued against some of the things that were being said. And I know that can be overwhelming. Donkey and Lisa are very smart, and they are really great at getting their arguments out on “paper”…me? Not so much. So, if I were trying to defend a belief that I had that I held dear, I likely couldn’t argue it as effectively as some they could. That’s why I like to have conversations, and ask questions and not fight. I don’t think I have all the answers, and it isn’t important to me to “win”, so I am hardly equipped to devise an argument.
          I know others for whom winning is very important, and it isn’t just for self satisfaction, it really does have the desire to help the underdog at heart.

          I really don’t believe anyone was trying to be malicious. I know I ,maybe wrongly, tried to address an attitude shift that I noticed you had. That maybe came across as confrontational. I do apologize for that. In my mind we were sort of a tribe, and I tend to address things like that quickly in my tribal groups.In my mind it was an invitation for you to speak your mind.

          I really believe the others were just expressing and defending their thoughts.

          Some of those clashed with others, including your own.

          But, I know they did try to engage you and ask questions of you.

          The tricky part here is that we have to ask why we are having the conversations.

          If we are talking about real issues that happen in interpersonal relationships -being honest and explicite over polite is almost preferred. That doesn’t mean rude, that just means we wont guard our thoughts out of fear that we are offending someone else. But certainly, we should be aware of how are words are coming across.

          And of course it needs to make sense to us.

          We cant just take somone elses idea of what is right and go hap-hazardly try to apply it our own life. Things have to make sense, we have to believe in them, they have to be right for us.

          So,if we are talking about the real things that happen in a marriage The large social issues of gender do have some bearing.
          But, really- what happened was over the top.

          Maybe we need to practice our more polite sensibilities and agree that there wont be much agreement on a certain issue. And, then respect that and be sensitive to it. e

          Staying stuck in an argument does little in regards to progress. We are forever stuck on how we can win it, when that could be completely futile.

          In poker everyone throws in their chips and then one winner takes all.

          I don’t see life like that, or discussions like that, or realtionships like that.
          In these thigns, everyone throws in their chips, and everyone gets to benefit from the collective pot.
          If you don’t like a chip, you don’t have to pick it up.

          Did that make any sense? It better, I just lost about 30-45 minutes that I hope I wont be missing too badly later :).

          Hope youre doing well!

          Like

        • linds01 says:

          PS.- after all my “Blah-blah- blah”…I forgot to say- you are welcomed to express your support of whoever, and the reasons why. People MAY challenge you on them, but I honestly don’t think it is an attempt to silence you.
          That is a chance to express your thoughts more thoroughly. And even if “I don’t know” or whatever, then that is ok., too.
          Everything always is a chance to learn something.

          Like

  10. marilyn sims says:

    To Everyone,

    If you want to read a very clear and (to me) a compelling reason for Trump’s success, please read David Wong”s article on “Cracked” titled, How half Of America Lost Its F**king Mind.

    Here are a few section titles: #6 It’s Not About Red and Blue States — It’s About The Country Vs.The City. #5 City People Are From a Different Goddamned Planet #4 Trends Always Start In The Cities–And All Of Them Are Not Good #3 The Rural Areas Have Been Beaten To Shit #2 EVERYONE LASHES OUT WHEN THEY DON’T HAVE A VOICE #1 Assholes Are Heroes. (translated to mean, they get things done because they don’t give a f**ck about being politically correct)

    The article is not simplistic it is written by a refugee from one of those forgotten rural small towns whose residents have lost hope of ever bring able to regain their sense of pride, find a job and whose rate of suicide among young adults is four times the national average. Trump is the voice that says, “Can you hear me NOW!”

    These are the places that the very real economic recovery never touched. These are the people who are tired, angry and resentful of “elite’ city dwellers and decision makers who dismiss them, mock them or write them off as deplorables.

    “But you might as well take time to try and understand them, because I’m telling you, they’ll still be around long after Trump is gone.”

    Like

    • Those are really good points, Marilyn. I’ve spent years blogging about what it is like to be forgotten and left behind in rural America, 17% unemployment rates, meth and heroin absolutely destroying everything, and so, so many suicides.Than when you try to speak up about what’s going on, all you hear is lectures about alleged “white privilege” and how you don’t know anything because the economy is really booming, and you’re just crazy and stupid and uneducated anyway.

      “Insanitybytes” right? Being labeled crazy became such a state of being, such a state of mind,I just embraced it as an entire internet identity. I’ve read so many articles that are all some variation of that theme, “How half Of America Lost Its F**king Mind.”

      We didn’t lose our sanity, we finally found it.

      Like

      • marilyn sims says:

        IB,

        I am so glad I found this article. I wanted something deeper than what I found in the usual media echo chambers to explain the inexplicable. I have been a city dweller my entire life and did not realize the depths of despair that plagued rural areas was so deep and unforgiving. I admit I was not willing to see/recognize the pain.I don’t know if I can do much to help, I am now much more willing to LISTEN.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Donkey says:

      Thanks for the tip, Marilyn! Some of the comments are interesting too. (I just looked to find one that particularly intrigued me earlier, but couldn’t find it again, sigh.)

      Like

  11. Donkey says:

    I’ve certainly seen a lot of disrespect for the Trump supporters, and a lack of understanding of and willingness to understand their motivations and lives (and I’m sure they are very varied). I really appreciate Wong’s article and others like it. If anyone has similar tips, I’d be interested.

    I’ve also seen too much of what I’d call disrespect for those who voted for Johnson or Stein. Deciding that you want to vote for one of the major candidates, even if you strongly dislike them and/or disagree with them, because you think the other one is SO BAD is a valid choice. But I think it’s unfair to assume that people who voted for a third party necessarily haven’t contemplated the same concerns you have, with the same amount of concern for vulnerable people, and simply come to a different conclusion on what he right thing to do is. It’s at least possible that they have.

    Maybe there is a “right” answer, maybe there isn’t. But I think it’s at least somewhat hybristic and boundaryless to act as if you can definitely know that the “right” choice was to vote for “the lesser evil” (whoever you think that was) or indeed that the “right” choice was to take a stand and vote for a third party.

    I heard Dr. Jill Stein talk about a voting system (can’t remember the name) that lets you vote for your first choice, knowing that if that person doesn’t win, your vote goes to your second choice. Sounds like a good idea to me!

    And I think the 15% rule for the debates is unfair. Stein and Johnson should have been able to participate in my opinion.

    (I know I’m lacking in the full respect living department myself, so this is not meant to be a holier than thou sort of comment)

    Like

  12. marilyn sims says:

    To all,

    FOOD FOR THOUGHT: There are approximately 218,959,000 people in the US who are ELIGIBLE to vote. Of those approximately ONLY 146,311,00 are REGISTERED to vote. In this election, Clinton received 59,938,290 votes (California is still counting and is expected to increase this lead); Trump received 59,704,886 votes.

    If you do the math, it adds up to appalling figures: More than TWENTY-SIX MILLION (26,667,824) REGISTERED VOTERS failed to show up at the polls and approximately NINETY-NINE MILLION (99, 316,000) of all those ELIGIBLE to vote DID NOT REGISTER
    AND THUS COULD NOT/WOULD NOT PARTICIPATE in one of the most important elections in this nation’s history.

    I would appreciate reading your thoughts and feelings. Me, I’m numb.

    Like

    • Well, California is why we have the popular vote discrepancy. Trump actually won the majority of votes in the the largest number of states, 35 of them to Hllary’s 15. Places like California are also why we have the electoral college. If we didn’t, our elections would be determined simply by the votes of people living in Los Angeles and New York. So without electorial votes, the people in the other 48 states would have no voice at all,on account of the fact that those two cities are so densely populated.

      Somebody smart once told me that elections are really determined by who is the most motivated to go out and vote on election day. That;s the bottom line, elections are won by who shows up and votes. Many people lose interest, stay home,or are unable/unwilling to make a decision. The candidate with the most determined voters who actually follow through, will always win.

      That’s why when we take polls, they often speak of “likely voters ,” Likely voters are their way of trying to guestimate what the actual turnout will be. That’s one thing that went wrong with the polls in this election,they kept underestimating the amount of enthusiasm for Donald Trump.

      Like

  13. marilyn sims says:

    IB

    I was not questioning the wisdom of the electoral college, nor the fact that New York and California are so densely populated that they could skew election results.

    What has left me on the verge of tears is that parents were in their middle aged years before they were able to vote for ANYONE IN ANY ELECTION, LOCAL OR FEDERAL AND MY GRANDPARENTS DIED WITHOUT EVER ATTAINING SUFFRAGE

    You see, we lived on THE LAST PLANTATION. We were the place that had TAXATION WITHOUT REPRESENTATION — we were residents in the capitol of the free world. Washington, D.C. and we were subject to the whims, likes and dislikes of Congress. We could not even vote for “dogcatcher” if we wanted. We had NO ELECTED OFFICIALS WHO COULD SPEAK FOR US!!! The first election in which we were ever able to vote for president was when J.F. Kennedy was nominated.

    I feel absolutely wretched that someone would throw away their most precious right for….WHAT?? I cannot fathom such negligence, such disrespect for their future and the future of their children.

    Sorry for the rant i am just overwhelmed with sorrow.

    Like

    • Donkey says:

      Yeah, it’s hard for me to understand how someone would choose not to vote at all. I can understand it when people are sick, exhausted, it takes forever to get there and there are kids to pick up etc. That I get, and it’s not democratic if it’s not pretty easily accessible to everyone.

      But I don’t get how someone would just choose to not vote at all. Even if you don’t like any of the major or minor candidates, you can vote blank, right?

      Like

      • marilyn sims says:

        Hi Donkey,

        I think if you dislike both candidates, you can “write-in” the name of someone else you think is better, more qualified etc. In this election, Jill Stein and Gary Johnson were on the ballot as alternatives to the major candidates. If I am wrong about being able to “write-in” a name I know those more knowledgeable will correct me.

        Like

  14. James says:

    Bravo, sir!

    I also believe that voters from both sides need to start voting out incumbent Congress people not during general elections but during primaries.

    There is a conflict of interest where Trump’s proposed Constitutional amendment for term limits has to get through people who are going to get hurt by term limits.

    That’s why that idea is already DOA with a leading Republican saying it won’t be on Congress’ agenda and “we already have term limits, they are called elections.”

    We The People need to #draintheswamp. Nobody else will do it if we don’t.

    Like

  15. YamIhere says:

    I look “white” but my facial features (especially the older I get) distinguish me as someone whose presence was distinctly unwelcome in the first half of the 20th century in Europe. And even after WWII, after the war crimes trials, the establishment of Israel, people like me were not welcome in many places here in the U.S. They called this “segregation” when the unwelcome were people of color. They used a more “refined” term for us, when they assured their members resurgence establishment was “restricted” – a Jew-free zone. Most American adults born after 1950 probably don’t know anything about this unless as film aficionados they’ve watched “Gentlemen’s Agreement” on Turner Classic Movies.

    And any American who believes anti-Semitism in America is nonexistent, or negligible, or not as vicious as prejudice against any other group is ignorant, uncaring, or too naive for words. I have witnessed it, experienced it and for the last eight years watched the POTUS help pave a road for Iran, to make their bus ride over Israel easier. I can’t know whether you’ve paid any attention to the resurgence of anti-Semitism all over the world, including and perhaps most importantly in the US since 2008. I can tell you that even when vicious attacks against Jews are reported, the stories are never followed up as they would have been ifnthe attacks were against Muslims or blacks. Does anyone reading this even recall the horrible killing of young students in a private Jewish school only a few years ago?

    Regardless of the opinions of people like Wasserman-Schultz, most of us believe this administration has shown every intention of throwing Israel under the bus. From the Iran deal to telling Israelis they should withdraw to pre-1967 borders, they’ve been throwing away the alliance of the only democracy in the Middle East. And those policies have given rise to more anti-Semitism in the US than ever.

    College students are anti-Semitic and anti-Israel, even though very few could produce a one thousand word essay describing the founding of Israel, and the aggressors in the wars. White supremacists had never ceased their hate but have felt more free to advertise it, with swastikas and graffiti. The groups of minorities with whom I work – who would report an anti-Hispanic or anti-black comment inna New York minute don’t even blink at anti-Semitic remarks, and tell me not to be “so sensitive.”

    NO! ENOUGH OF THE POLITICALLY CORRECT MULTI-CULTURALISM AND PROTECTION OF ONLY THE MINORITIES THAT MAKE GREAT NEWS SPOTS! Plenty of people who aren’t Jewish understood that when only a few groups are worthy of political protection, the alarm needs to be sounded! Whatever, whoever you think we are, youPeople guilty of stereotyping as the rest.

    This nation was created to be a land of freedom. We’ve had unfortunate detours from the War of Independent to here. But the spirit of the American Revolution has NOT died, and the People can still recognize tyranny. And it stops here. As Lincoln said: “As a nationof free men, we must live through all time…or die by suicide.”. And later admonished that we must be true to our founders’ ideals so that ” a nation OF the People, BY the People and FOR the People

    Like

    • linds01 says:

      Hi YamIhere.

      Its awful when you are singled out- for whatever reason. & It has serious implications when an entire people group are categorized and pushed aside (I realize that description does not capture the totality of the experience at all..I am tired and I don’t have the right words to describe it at the moment. )
      But, I do empathize.
      I posted an hour long podcast of an interview with Vincent Harding, one of the civil rights leaders that worked along side MLK. It has lots to say about democracy and about America’s infancy in it.
      There are a lot of things that lift me up about it, I hope you listen and find the same true.
      In brief, a few of those things are related to the civil rights movement NOT being just about legal rights, but about becoming what is described as “the beloved community”… and as such we are one- even though we are all different.
      Harding says that there is no minority in such a community, just like there is no minority in a family.
      We are all part of the American culture. We are all Americans. No matter what skin color, ethnic or religious affilitation. We are all different, and that is what unifies us as Americans.
      I know prejudice is real. I know it still exists- and it effects everyone who doesn’t necessarily look exactly like our neighbors.
      That is why Harding says we are still in infancy. We don’t know how to get beyond the otherness.
      It sucks that we as individuals have to endure and experience what feels like such injustice.
      But, (and I don’t know if you are an Saturday Night Live fan..) but, Kate McKinnen’s “cold start” to the show on Saturday, and her words “I’m not giving up, and neither should you” hit me where I needed to be hit.
      It’s not for ourselves that we bear the burden of discrimination and injustice- it is for our brothers, our sisters, our neighbors, and mostly for our children and our children’s children.

      In peace and love to you!

      Like

      • YamIhere says:

        Linds, I know – not only believe – that the majority of Americans are NOT bigoted! I know that not everyone has positive experiences with a given minority group, and yet most Americans don’t generalize a negative experience with an individual to all who resemble that person, or speak or worship the same way. My mother was once stabbed and later mugged and had her arm broken by members of the same minority group, but she attributed such behavior to parents not raising their children with ethics, not their appearance.

        America’s exceptionalism is not only in its concept of government. This nation of immigrants brings together people who think differently, and working together these people invent things and solve problems in ways a homogeneous nation couldn’t conceive. If you’ve never lived abroad, the statement that people from different places think in different ways may seem odd, impossible or even negative. Living in another country, where people don’t speak your language, govern the way we do, and approach life from a completely different POV makes this concept very real.

        Our founders expected that people would come as they had, and their vision was our motto: E PLURIBUS UNUM – from the many, one. I don’t think they believed that arrival on these shores or becoming a citizen would impart brotherly love for all other Americans. I don’t think that they expected that would ever happen for all Americans through all the years. I believe they hoped, believed and prayed that each American could put love of country, and doing the right thing ahead of dislikes based on differences. Jeff is not required to like me or anyone of my background. I am not required to like Jeff. I would feel that it would be my duty to speak out against anyone who tried to deny Jeff his rights as a citizen no matter how I FEEL about Jeff.

        Matt often tries to make this point with regard to marriage, and it could be extended to one’s children (his son isn’t an adolescent yet): We do what we know we’re supposed to do whether or not we feel like doing it, whether or not we like our mate or teen right this minute. We do it because we know it’s the right thing; because we vowed; because we know feelings come and go. Because we know that this is what’s expected of us as mates and parents.

        And that’s what our election was about. Multiculturalism should not replace our striving toward unity, just as individualism should not be ahead of our striving toward the unity of marriage. And I’m case Jeff wonders how much I know about that, I can say we’ll be celebrating 36 years of marriage on Thanksgiving.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Jeff Strand says:

      If you’re so loyal to the foreign nation of Israel, I suggest you surrender your American passport and move there. No one’s stopping you, and don’t let the door hit you in the tuchus on the way out!

      Like

      • YamIhere says:

        “It’s better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak and prove it true.”

        As a USMC veteran, I’ve proved my loyalty to my country. My love for and loyalty to my country are not merely by-products of having been born in the USA. I believe this country is exceptional. The men and women who fought the War of Indepence astounded the world when they defeated the mightiest military and naval forces on earth at that time. Against all odds the Revolution ended in our independence from Britain. The founders debated and argued and prayed throughout the long months it took the Continental Congress to produce our unique Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

        You don’t know me. But all who do know of my love for and fascination with our history. I don’t know you, so I cannot know how you feel about the USA, or guess the depth of your knowledge or ignorance of its history. And I see no reason to be impolite; I need not comment on your replies because regular readers of Matt’s blog are familiar with them.

        But I feel that a bit of history and logic are in order. We had an ally in France, who helped us gain our independence. A Jewish friend of our first President financed a significant portion of the costs of war. The world is much “smaller” than it was in 1776, and no nation can now stand alone – isolationism is neither practical or wise when communication around the world is instantaneous and ICBMs could turn your city into a massive crater glowing in the dark in five minutes.

        To alienate nations who were traditionally loyal to the US is foolish. In addition to cooling the relationship with Israel, this POTUS has shown little concern toward maintaining good relations with many countries in that category, in Europe and Asia. The Russian Federation is not the only nuclear power whose attitude toward our nation is less favorable. While this election firmly rejected the notion of the USA becoming a cog in a global society, we need to repair relations with ALL the countries with whom we’ve worked in the past to our mutual benefit. We also need to be able to work together with major players like the Russian Federation’, not provoke and anger them with saber rattling. If you haven’t paid attention to what’s happening outside the USA, you would be wise to become current.

        Finally: there was no sentence in my reply which even implied that my loyalty is to any other nation, and so without being rude, your comment makes me wonder how much anti-Semitism & anti-Israel hatred fueled your advice to me. I don’t believe that any of the nations in the Middle East who want to drive Israel into the sea and chant “Death to America!” and fund terrorism are reliable allies. It is because I don’t want Iranian nuclear missiles landing here that I think this administration’s faux-alliance with those nations while dismissing Israel is both foolish and dangerous.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Matt says:

          Thank you for your polite response. Jeff has a unique ability to (I hope accidentally, but it seems unlikely) mistreat people and/or incite anger with his comments. It appears you’re already aware of this.

          Thank you for your service to our country.

          Liked by 1 person

  16. YamIhere says:

    Sorry;
    “a nation Of the People, By the People, and For the People shall not perish from the earth.”

    Like

  17. linds01 says:

    Matt,
    This is for you, since you may know some things about it that I definitely dont.
    Ok, so like millions of other lazy Americans, I get a lot of my news from Facebook. Today I found this..you may have already seen it… :

    he actually sounds like a decently reasonable guy! Wow!

    I feel like an idiot, because I frequently buy the spliced version.

    Out of curiosity I did a quick Google search about laws governing news sources. I didn’t find many, except for the code of ethics that some really awesome professor published. (I linked it below for anyone who is curious)

    What has happened to THOSE media standards?

    I believe in the first amendment, sure- but there is a point when producing and publishing lies to the public can be viewed as actual harm to the public, right?

    What harm would it do to regulate news sources?

    In the health care world we have organizations that give accreditation when certain standards are met.

    Is there anything like that out there that can let us know what news sources meet certain guidelines (like telling the stinking truth? Sheesh.)

    If not- my vote is that there should be.

    I’m a little pissed.

    Article 1: ARTICLE I – Responsibility. The primary purpose of gathering and distributing news and opinion is to serve the general welfare by informing the people and enabling them to make judgments on the issues of the time. Newspapermen and women who abuse the power of their professional role for selfish motives or unworthy purposes are faithless to that public trust. The American press was made free not just to inform or just to serve as a forum for debate but also to bring an independent scrutiny to bear on the forces of power in the society, including the conduct of official power at all levels of government.

    We are powerless without an ethical and thorough media.

    https://www.ndsu.edu/pubweb/~rcollins/431ethics/codes.htm

    Liked by 1 person

    • Matt says:

      Humility is an important thing. I don’t like being self-congratulatory, because it’s a totally off-putting thing.

      But this is truly one of those things in life that I did rather well. I don’t know how great of a reporter I was from a digging-up-stories standpoint, but I damn sure was certain about verifiable facts and accuracy, and was committed to presenting all sides of a story equally in the interest of letting readers form their own opinions.

      That is the function of media.

      The free and independent press exists to inform the public about what’s happening without interference from censorship or oppressive governments.

      The function of the media is to expose wrongdoing and to hold elected officials accountable to those who have the power to remove them from office.

      In the absence of a vigilant press, taxpayer-funded government operations go unchecked and corrupt politicians’ pockets get lined as they make decisions that benefit certain groups for financial gain at the expense of others.

      It’s not okay.

      I’ve spent a lot of time lately thinking about and writing about the importance of choosing truth over comfort.

      Websites aren’t held to the same standards as the local newspaper because they’re not beholden to subscription numbers, nor do they receive and publish Letters to the Editor, nor do they have to answer to real-life people in their coverage areas.

      We’re seeing the ramifications of that now.

      And it’s a problem.

      The Society for Professional Journalists (SPJ) and The American Society of Newspaper Editors (ASNE) are the two organizations we looked to at the daily newspapers.

      Anyway. This subject really matters to me. Thank you for sharing it.

      Like

      • linds01 says:

        Do the SPJ or ASNE have any regulatory power?

        There should be a regulatory body that accredits news sources- just so the public knows that the source is keeping up with the ethical standards (as noted in the previous link). ..They do this is in the healthcare world.

        In healthcare you have to be accredited in order to receive federal money (medicare), so I don’t know if the incentive would be as great to become accredited, apart from the incentive that more people will buy and listen to those accredited sources…

        I also think that the state of Oregon may have a small chance to sue the major news networks for disturbing the peace or inciting a riot. (Any lawyers in the house??)

        I am not law suit happy or anything, but really- the networks that are contributing to the onslaught of propaganda need to be held accountable and monetary damages can go to creating such a regulatory agency.

        I don’t think I heard one thing about policy the entire year. I heard a lot of attacks on both sides.

        I have no idea about how to go about, or who, to communicate these ideas to (or if they are even really valid and feasible).
        But I do know it matters and that changes need to happen.

        Definitely things to educate myself on.

        Thanks for opening the topic and conversation.

        Like

        • Matt says:

          The 1st Amendment protects the right to free speech.

          Which is way the National Enquirer is allowed to run huge headlines like “Oprah Gives Birth to Spanish-Speaking Alien Baby!” and there isn’t anything anyone can do about it, including Oprah. (It’s incredibly hard for anyone famous–a “public figure”–to win libel/slander/defamation lawsuits.)

          The media is ALLOWED to be misinform people, or to try to persuade people to believe whatever they want them to believe, or whatever messages big money is being paid to promote.

          As in most things in life, it requires people who value principle over profit to make it work.

          Some rich people think a chaotic world where they have power and the masses are uneducated is better than one where everyone knows and deals with the truth, and everyone has the chance for individual success based on effort and merit.

          As it is, the truth is shrouded in agenda-driven messages, which some people blindly believe and others cynically reject.

          The net result being, people sometimes believe things which aren’t true, and people sometimes don’t believe things which are.

          I want an educated populace. Not an ignorant one. And even if they are willfully ignorant, which is their right, I’d like true information to be available to them.

          I don’t believe it is currently.

          Like

          • linds01 says:

            Having an regulating body wouldn’t interfere with freedom of speech. Oprah can still have alien babies..she can even have twins!

            It would just be appointed to survey (And news sources would need to document and prove) that they upheld certain standards in reporting.

            It would be an indicator to consumers that the information they were getting was correct. It would just be a way to differentiate quality.

            Screw awards for journalism excellence- show us you’re accredited.

            But, I don’t know what specific incentives various news sources (print, radio, televisions, internet) would have other than people preferring those sources. ..

            #itallstartedwithbrianwilliams… (lol- just joking.. :)

            Like

        • YamIhere says:

          If you two continue this discussion I won’t find a publisher for my article (not quite finished) regarding the media and their role in oublic life (in the USA specifically)!

          Political affiliation aside, as a print and broadcast journalist myself in my twenties I’ve been disgusted with all the mainstream outlets. Those who (openly, in my opinion) supported Clinton were nearly shameless in their efforts to get her elected. The “conservative” outlets weren’t a whole lot better. There were three or four TV & radio hosts on the right who weren’t dumped into MY basket of unprofessional journalists, and I didn’t sift through every host or “anchor” on the left but I will not believe there weren’t at least three or four of them who remained true to their journalistic ethics.

          If a the host of a radio/TV program is clear to the audience that his/her show is the broadcast equivalent of the op/ed section of a print publication, no problem. This is, as we all heard growing up, a free country. If a channel wants to give airtime to such a show because it’s popular, which means it’s profitable, go for it. BUT PLEASE – don’t permit this during the programs which are advertised as NEWS! I find it especially disgusting for Fox News – “Fair And Balanced,” “We report, you decide” – to allow “news anchors” to editorialize.

          I could go on but seriously need to complete my article for submission TODAY & don’t want to give away the whole story for free! I simply wanted to let you know that you’re spot on in your assessments. If I do get it published this week, I will let you know where to find it. I promise there are aspects of this issue which (as far as I’ve yet found) have been noted only by one guest on one program, and I don’t want to be “scooped” so I’ll get back to slaving over the hot keyboard right after the coffee kicks in!

          Does anyone know of a better dictation program than Dragon Speech?

          Liked by 1 person

    • OKRickety says:

      “he actually sounds like a decently reasonable guy! Wow!

      I feel like an idiot, because I frequently buy the spliced version.”

      Not that I think Trump is a great candidate, but I suspect that a large percentage of those who voted for Hillary Clinton usually “buy the spliced version”. I suspect that one of the reasons Trump got much of the non-urban vote is that the non-urban voters are less likely to be fooled by the mass media.

      Like

  18. I actually blogged about irresponsible journalism just this morning.

    https://insanitybytes2.wordpress.com/2016/11/15/this-is-just-irresponsible-journalism/

    The nature of propaganda, rhetoric, brainwashing, cults, is really how I stumbled upon those red pills. Gaming women, gaming a culture, are both done in very similar ways. Watching the red pills morph into the rise of the Alt Right has been fascinating. The power and control the media has held over us was really broken in this process, as blogs and technology have stepped in to break that stranglehold.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Matt says:

      No doubt. But the average American citizen should be able to pick up ANY major daily newspaper in this country (or visit their website) or watch the nightly news on ANY local or cable network, and trust that the information is as factually correct and fairly presented as possible.

      And it’s my estimation–no matter which way one leans politically–that there are exactly ZERO media entities with national reach providing that level of honest transparency and verified fact-checking and commitment to reporting news no matter how much the news might sway opinion against one’s personal beliefs.

      Watchdog journalism mustn’t disappear. Ever.

      Like

  19. YamIhere says:

    As one of the last of the Baby Boomers (people born between 1945 and the end of 1959), I NEVER imagined that I’d have to use my multi-lingual abilities to glean news from OTHER COUNTRIES! This is the USA! “They” can’t censor our news! The First Amendment, we have a guaranteed protection of a free press!

    Well, “they,” by which we Baby Boomers meant an over-reaching government that would keep truth from citizens in order to maintain control,, DIDN’T censor our media. The MEDIA censored the news to control how the citizens would vote for the government!

    What I learned from online news outlets from non-English, non-Spanish speaking sources was astonishing. What I learned about how the rest of the world regards Americans nowadays was worse. And I heard none of this from “crediblle” US media.

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  20. […] via Our Political System is Broken for the Same Reason Our Relationships End — Must Be This Tall To Ri… […]

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