absence of political discussions is threat to democracy

Discussion in 'Elections' started by AndyMead, Oct 25, 2004.

  1. AndyMead

    AndyMead Homo Sapien

    Nov 2, 1999
    Seat 12A
    Sporting Kansas City
    Single Issue Politics and the death of public debate

    As John Stewart said, "you people are hurting America."

    When folks are convinced to vote on one single issue - whether it's Kerry getting the Red Sox score wrong, or George W. Bush having been a cheerleade,r - we all lose.

    This forum is mostly a bunch of threads being used to "score points" against the other side. Who the ******** cares? Really. Anyone who changes their vote - or makes their decision based on any one of these "points" is a moron.

    It's like the "Don't Blame Me, I Voted For x" bumper stickers. It's all a copout. We live in a participatory democracy. We're all in it together - regardless of who wins or loses, and regardless of how they win or lose, elections.

    We are all responsible.

    The objective is not to "beat the other side." It's to elect the best candidate. And after the election to hold the electee accountable for serving all of their constituents.

    When it all turns to character assassinations, we all lose.

    Grow up, educate yourself on all the issues, then vote. And try to do it in a civil manner with an informed discussion of the issues and events affecting the nation. "But he started it" isn't a valid excuse. Take responsibility for your own actions - and insist that others do the same.
  2. Dan Loney

    Dan Loney BigSoccer Supporter

    Mar 10, 2000
    Los Angeles Sol
    Nat'l Team:
    Re: Single Issue Politics and the death of public debate

    To me, though, that's like saying "We're all here on this board to support soccer" when Quake fans mock the Galaxy for sneezing a 4-0 lead. I'm pretty sure they weren't trying to get fans in Los Angeles to buy San Jose season tickets, or to convince neutral Los Angeles sports fans to choose to support the Earthquakes over the Galaxy.

    The premise that this forum is an educational tool meant to stimulate debate doesn't hold much water, but in the rare instances it does, it's because people frame topics in a way that asks for solutions. Which is fine, but asking for a plurality of that kind of post a week before an election this vicious is pissing up a rope. Maybe in six months or so.

    This is actually one of the more polite boards you're likely to find. Seriously, take a look outside. Look in any forum where people talk politics. Read the papers, watch TV. It's an hour into "28 Days Later," and the nation's been overrun by bloodthirsty zombies. Or Red Sox fans. Same thing.
  3. Attacking Minded

    Attacking Minded New Member

    Jun 22, 2002
    Re: Single Issue Politics and the death of public debate


    It's like consumers buying crap even when their are better options available. How many dumb old men have bought a bad American car because they wanted to "buy union" or "buy American"? Lots. That's where we are today. Our pols give us crap because we are willing to buy it. On one side we have the Bush "values" agenda which has done little to promote values and doesn't translate those values into policy like healthcare. On the other hand we've got the "watch out for numero uno" Kerry Democrats whose arguments boil down to, "We hate them."

    I wonder if we could get low income universal healthcare if we structured it like social security. That is, leave out the top income earners and create a program where the lower class pool their resources through government to get the maximum they can afford. That's too radical though. The Reps won't go for it because that would mean government would actually have to do something positive and the Dems won't go for it because they can't use it to demagogue on making the rich "pay their fair share."
  4. superdave

    superdave BigSoccer Yellow Card

    Jul 14, 1999
    VB, VA
    DC United
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Re: Single Issue Politics and the death of public debate

    Andy, there are threads like you want. Not enough tho.
  5. Garcia

    Garcia Member

    Dec 14, 1999
    Castro Castro
    Re: Single Issue Politics and the death of public debate

    Gather around the campfire.

    Someone's praying for public debate. :confused:

    Someone's singing his praise for bringing this up.

    Someone's sleeping and doesn't inform himself on the issues.

    Someone's laughing because his two-party, mudslinging machine is going strong. :D

    Someone's crying and that someone is you and me. :(

    Oh lord, kumbaya!
  6. Attacking Minded

    Attacking Minded New Member

    Jun 22, 2002
    Re: Single Issue Politics and the death of public debate

    But we love our polls don't we?
  7. Garcia

    Garcia Member

    Dec 14, 1999
    Castro Castro
    Re: Single Issue Politics and the death of public debate

    And how, Spanky!
  8. DoctorJones24

    DoctorJones24 Member

    Aug 26, 1999
    Re: Single Issue Politics and the death of public debate

    I'm with Loney on this one, notwithstanding his INSANE swipe at Red Sox fans near the end of his post.

    But what do you mean, Andy, by calling the Red Sox score and Bush's cheerleading past "issues?" Those aren't "issues" at all. They're distractions, silly PR crap that some folks around here like jarring about. You seem to be making them into a sort of Straw Man to stand for real "single issues," upon which rational people just might solely base their vote: War, for one. Abortion, for another. And discussing such things isn't just "scoring points" unless you regard the whole American political scene as a game, just as the media would have you do, I suppose.

    You do a similar shifty rhetorical move when you use a humorous bumper sticker slogan as an example of some kind of serious political statement.

    I guess that, like me, you're just very election-weary, and you glanced at the silliness of some of the threads on this board today, and this frustration came out. But as you probably know, and as Loney has pointed out, there's a LOT of useful and intelligent stuff on these boards for those who look.
  9. olckicker

    olckicker Member

    Jan 30, 2001
    Specifically in workplaces and neighborhoods where talking politics is apparently a taboo. I would rather have deep, civil discussions about the election with conservatives instead of more shallow talk about Sunday's NFL games.
  10. tog

    tog Member

    Oct 25, 2000
    Which reminds me, did you see that New England-Pittsburgh game...?

    No, you're right. There is a general lack of the type of community discussion that characterized our smaller-village-based history.

    Also, today, politics are very personal. I think--not even voluntarily--bad things sometimes about the character of people with whom I disagree. I don't want to do it, but it happens, and I think it's mutual. This is the result, I think, of the discourse we watch between the candidates and parties. They polarize each other, and so we end up placing ourselves on one of those poles and those with whom we disagree on the other. Therefore, when we do talk, we stick to those things that are common and bring us together (sports, perhaps) and stay away from those that might separate us.

    Also, talking is a lot of work. Work sucks...
  11. Zamphyr

    Zamphyr Member

    Mar 31, 2003
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    If I went to work hung over on a Monday and you sidled up to me and started a "get rid of the electoral college" or a Bush rant, I do believe you'd get your ass kicked.

    This election is not a suprise. It's been planned for weeks now. If you wait till the day before an election to try to engage in meaningful discussion, you've missed the boat.

    PS - How can a Marvin Lewis coached team have such a ************ defense ?
  12. tog

    tog Member

    Oct 25, 2000
    Or Dungee?
  13. Mel Brennan


    Paris Saint Germain
    United States
    Apr 8, 2002
    Paris Saint Germain FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Re: Single Issue Politics and the death of public debate

    Where do you get your information? How do you define "educated"? And why is voting, and not daily citizenship engagment of the representatives (the fruition of such engagement being ones' vote) the clearest, ultimate act you seem to define for us?

    No, what might need to mature a bit is the perspective that authentic information, the processes of education, and the very notions of citizenship predicated upon actionable info springing from a critical, Socratic civic mind is wholly in relationship with individuals "growing up" and "taking responsibility," as if the tools are out there in front of everybody for their relatively reasonable access/consumption, when we know that at least 66% of those ingredients are missing NOT just from discourse, but from the institutions of citizenship and from the daily drumbeats of damn near everything that constitute the nation right now.

    IOW, if you can't name your representatives, local to global AND can't name how they voted (or didn't vote, as the case may be) today AND can't relate the issues upon which the voting took place and how that issue/vote affects the interdependent expression of the self and the other, then what, in fact, does "information," "education" and "voting" come to mean?
  14. skipshady

    skipshady New Member

    Apr 26, 2001
    Orchard St, NYC
    Re: Single Issue Politics and the death of public debate

    Thanks mom.

    But really, there are good civil discussions going on in between all the partisan mudslinging. Trolls shout the loudest - you just have to learn to ignore them.

    I for one find this forum somewhat educational - I get viewpoints that I wouldn't actively look for, and the contentious nature of some discussions force me to do my research.

    I'm sorry you only see the negative and don't see the positive, willfully or otherwise.
  15. obie

    obie New Member

    Nov 18, 1998
    NY, NY
    New York Red Bulls
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    About a month ago there was a thread asking if anyone was ever actually swayed to change votes or opinions based on stuff they'd read here. My answer then is the same answer that I give here to Andy's eloquent argument:

    I don't care.

    This is a friggin' soccer board. It's not BigLoftyIdeasAndRationalConsensus.com -- it's a complete diversion, and if I didn't just enjoy getting in here and roughing it up, I wouldn't be here. I do learn things occasionally, but if I want to know what's really going on in the world that affects me and my family, this is never going to be the first place to which I turn. And it shouldn't be for you, either.

    There are attempts to have rational discussions here every single day on a variety of important topics. But if you expect a rational political discussion 17 hours before the polls open to elect a new President, you're in the wrong country.
  16. heybeerman

    heybeerman Member

    Aug 2, 2001
    Chicago Burbs
    Chicago Fire
    Re: Single Issue Politics and the death of public debate

    I was almost interested/insulted until I saw "Lick my love pump".
  17. Matrim55

    Matrim55 Member+

    Aug 14, 2000
    Nat'l Team:
    United States

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