Monday, September 8, 2008

divided

well that movie split: a divided america was really informative.  

78% of american's get all of their political information from campaign ads.  how scary is that! 

when the founding father's gave us free speech they intended for us to have a dialog so the truth would triumph, but now we are passive on lookers for the most part.  when freedom of speech and press falters the market place of ideas fails and it's impossible to fill the most important civic obligation.  make and informed vote that will keep the government in check.

this leads to voter disenfranchisment because people feel they are being excluded from the process.  

so, only the most committed  are actively involved.  (these are the people who donate $)  both sides need this money so they cater with the strongest feelings of those who write the checks.  so the elected play to base.  so this creates a partisan discourse leading to 1 or 2 wedge issues, which we can totally feel!  creates a divide, that is actually probably not as big as the media makes it out to be, but makes it impossible to discuss.  (i can't even talk politics with family, can you?)  and leads people to think, "why bother?" because you can't change peoples mind, and there is no room for compromise.  

so concerning faith and politics.  i had no idea there was a debate about what "a separation of church and state", but i guess there is.  state is supposed to stay out of the church's business, where as i thought it was that church was supposed to stay out of government's business (which is probably how the  atheist founding father's intended it, although it's not in the constitution or bill of rights).  

the real issue isn't faith as much as values and morals or moral values.  beyond the 2 wedge issues i can think of (abortion and gay marriage) it also tells people in the bible to care for the poor, the sick, the elderly, and orphans.  and there is a just war doctrine and christians really aren't supposed to start a war.  

it seems there really does come a point when politicians start to exploit the moral conscious.  then faith becomes more important than policy because people are only paying attention to the one or two wedge issues.  these moral values cannot be legally solved.  george bush had the same values as mccain, yet abortion is still legal and more gay's have the right of marriage now that 8 years ago, but our economy is failing, our environment is being destroyed, we are fighting an war with no positive outcome, our schools are failing. . . .

the movie also talked about the willingness and readiness to disrespect their opponents.  a take no prisoners attitude.  this attitude filters down which is why it gets harder and harder to even discuss the issues, because it's ok to be disrespectful, we almost don't know how to talk about it without getting so impassioned we can be disrespectful.

the concentration of media ownership has created a bias in reporting.  in 1986 there were 86 companies that owned media outlets, now there are 7.  these companies determine the issues and how they are covered.  

what are the strategies for the campaigns.  traditionally the democrats try and get people to register and get out and vote.  the republican strategy has been the opposite really.  it's to drive down voter turn out by going negative.  if this didn't work they wouldn't keep doing it.  people get fatigued and don't vote.  

so. . . what do we do?  try and talk to people i guess.  pay attention to the REAL issues.  find a way to compromise and find the commonalities, because there are many more than a few wedge issues.  vote.

1 comment:

The Lucks said...

Did you notice in 1986 there were more companies that owned stations, etc??? Yeah, say thank you to Ronald Regean for that BS. Honestly, I LOVE speaking politics with my family, but then again, I learn such amazing information from my parents. Such as, the huge evangelists (Tom Hayes a prime example) are actually stating that we only get a President for 4 definitely, 8 possibly. The Supreme Court Justices we get while they are in office, we get for at least 30! So, we have to sit there and think about it. Supreme Court Justices who are brought in by right wing Christian folks will be Justices who make federally illegal to have an abortion, federally illegal to have same sex marriages. 3 Supreme Court Justices will be brought into control during the next presidential reign. We are basically currently tied with conservative/liberal judges in the Supreme Court with one "swing vote" Judge. So, let's think about the change invents of time, laws, with conservative supreme court judges in control for the next 30 years. Peace.