Another election is drawing near in the US, and I have to confess after listening to a number of the ignorant and oh-so-massively-biased “talking heads” at the various US television networks, listened to radio commentary, ads purporting to state facts in order to slander the one side or the other (and even Christian Radio stations weigh in on this – shame!) I come to a conclusion:
I frankly can’t understand how our American cousins can possibly come to an informed opinion as they are about to vote for who will be their president for the next four years.
How can US citizens listen to these mouthpieces go on and on, day in and day out, harping on the same topic? How those same talking heads trot out hearsay, innuendo, and even flat lies, and pass that off as responsible journalism? I forgot – they’re not journalists, they’re commentators, and they don’t have to deal with the truth. Have we got to the point that truth has become dependent on situation?
I fully understand that people vote based on their likes and dislikes, that’s human nature. However, when they want to set aside bias for a moment, in order to weigh a man’s body of work, his history, what he has contributed – they should be able to get to the truth – the real “un-spun” truth.
There have been a lot of likeable presidents and prime ministers that did little to no good, or even great harm; and there have been some that have been very little liked, who did the right thing and the country benefited from that.
The real truth has to surface in order to make an informed decision, just like one needs to have a drug-free Olympics in order to determine who’s the best in his field of sports. If everything is being distorted, amended, augmented, then one would have no real basis for deciding beyond “I like this guy”, and never having a hope of justifying even in your own mind why that’s a good decision. Otherwise, we’ll (continue) toward a path where the American people get the President who’s puppeteers have paid the most to get public opinion warped to their self-serving intentions.
Our own Canadian elections are disgusting, dirty and unethical enough, but thankfully we Canadians don’t have a system that allows for Super-Pacs to take half-truths and sew them together with innuendo and huge amounts of money, and try to pass that off as fact – at least not to the same degree as we see in the US. Or at least, if we do, they’re not as well-funded as their self-interested billionaires or massive fundamentalist churches south of the border.
Who can tell who’s telling the truth from who’s telling (shall I be polite) something other than the truth out of cleverly-disguised self-interest?
I wonder if the average American knows to what extent these folks are trying to lead him around by the nose.
Personally, I have been fascinated that the US could finally haul itself out of the ooze of backwardness and dumb-think that seems to categorize most election periods (ours included) long enough to vote in a Black Man as president. Good on them – it’s about 250 years overdue, but hey, better late than never.
Better yet, he seems to be an INTELLIGENT man – a huge improvement over the last dumb-ass they (in some fit of mindlessness) actually voted back into office for a second term!
Despite the US Electorate allowing the previous dumb-ass to get the US into (yet another) un-win-able series of wars (or police actions – let’s be clear) so he could have a Presidency “like Daddy’s” … now new presidential hopefuls and THEIR puppeteers have the mass-dumbness to blame the current President for not being able to wave a magic wand and undo all the harm his predecessor string-puppet and his cronies and puppeteers were able to lay upon the hard-working ordinary folks in the US. Whatever is going to be done to correct that will take more than 4 years.
I get the impression that in some ways, the structure of the US elections (and the madness of the circus-primaries)… it’s like they’re trying to vote in a new Messiah. The last guy is a goat, the new guy will solve every problem they’ve ever had… and then four years later, he’s the new goat and they’re trying to vote in another Messiah, but better than the last one. It’s like an entire nation behaving like a teenager in love – we need this new guy, nobody else will do, can’t even look at the old guy.
Maybe someday, they’ll have advanced far enough to have a Woman President! There are some amazingly intelligent, dedicated and civic-minded women who could probably do an a amazing amount of good for the American people. I just suspect that most women see how inherently degrading and ethically compromising the process of getting to the White House seems to be, and wisely stay away from that. Good on them for having principles.
The US had the potential to be the greatest country in the world. Its founding fathers were intellectual as well as practical men who (for a set of reasons that refreshingly don’t seem to include hidden self-interest) were able to craft a constitution based on the very best thinking of the day, and oriented to the greatest good for all of its citizens. That time is past, and though I doubt the average American can see it, his efforts and those of the few responsible and ethical elected representatives out there somehow end up shoring up a system as corrupt and self-serving as anything the Soviets, the Chinese or a host of others could ever have dreamed up.
The US dream, lamentably, has been so twisted and corrupted and spoiled by the super-wealthy who just cannot ever seem to be satisfied with having everything, that the average US citizen by this point ends up feeling like he’s working to protect his country and his family, but instead is like his War of Independence Soldier forbears – simply cannon-fodder in a war against him and his uncomplicated desire to have a proper and proud life, raise his family and see his kids do better than he.