In today’s era of 24-hour news cycles, pundits that argue over the finest points and outrage expressed towards others for their opinions, it is no wonder that many people feel despondent, angry and frustrated with the goings on of the day. It is true that the ideologies between the so-called left and right have stark differences between them. It is equally true that our elections to public service presents the clearest of choices for a voter – that is in touch with what they truly believe.
The challenge that is presented to those who are in touch with that self-actualized part of themselves is this: the larger segment of the population, made up of people who actually vote, couldn’t care less about figuring out what they believe or why they believe it. These are (at the risk of disparaging these fellow sentient human beings) the “Low information voter” group that Rush Limbaugh speaks so frequently about. These are individuals who have chosen to give their precious vote to someone who appeals to them as a personality or entertainer, rather than a leader. If you can motivate a group of people through speaking and direct their energies, rooted in raw emotional response alone, you can be elected to just about any office in the land in today’s world.
Voters that are aware of history and the mistakes our fore-bearers have made attempt to raise a flag for a low information voters group to say “Hey, wait a minute, do you understand what & who your voting for?” The low information voter, who genuinely understands that they are not connected, will regurgitate a line from one of the PACs that panderers to their emotions and ego. The ego that I am talking about has nothing to do with the type of car you drive or the title of your job. It has everything to do with appearing to be a “good person” in the eyes of other parents picking their kids up from school. The large majority of individuals who are voting based on emotion are doing so to avoid the possible “sin” of nonconformance.
You would think that by asking a low information voter why they believe, you would receive a response that was tied to their understanding. What actually happens, however, is a mindnumbing — make blood shoot out of your eyes — parroting of a statistic, soundbite or a strawman argument whose premise is implausible at best.
“Why do you support Obama care?”
“Well, it’s the right thing to do!” or “Because I believe in compassion…” or “We don’t want to fall behind the rest of the world, do we?” or my favorite, “It’s actually going to lower the cost of healthcare!”
None of these statements actually articulate a reason for supporting the affordable care act. by and large, the euphemistic responses provided by a cultlike obsession with approving of everything the president does rarely deals with fact. When facts are injected into a conversation, they are most often the form of a well-placed yet misrepresented statistic that seeks to stifle conversation. but I have drifted from the core tenant of this post…
Disingenuous is generally defined as misrepresenting the truth in a way that would lead someone to believe you were telling the truth. Furthermore, disingenuous refers to coercive lying. to avoid being disingenuous, Webster defines the term as:
Not truly honest or sincere : giving the false appearance of being honest or sincere.
Sincerity is where it’s at — even when I might wish to fabricate statistics that would bolster my argument, my own personal ethics and sincerity towards the person I am speaking with would compel me to tell the truth. It is this simple moral difference which makes today’s climate in the marketplace of ideas so caustic. One group believes that the ends justify the means; that winning the argument, even if that means lying to win the argument, means you won. Another group believes that my own personal ethics prevent the craven patterns of my debate opponent and I am forced to either withdraw, not respond or become inflamed with the hope of winning them over based on the merits of the idea. That inflammation is counterproductive, as the Alinsky based tactics would use false outrage or outright lies to get you worked up and then slip up.
Truth be told, the average liberal probably doesn’t even know what it is that they believe in. The older ones used “Rules for Radicals” in order to protest in the 60’s, and when the technique worked (feining anger, disrupting events and protesting) they stuck with it. Younger liberals follow what they were taught by mom & mom and being angry is just that – you’re angry (unknowingly). This is one reason why I believe we are going to be in this disingenuous outrage society for a long time. Learned behaviors are very difficult to break and getting angry to get your way will be a part of our discussion for too long for my taste.
My hope for all things & people is that, once this hangover from the lies we’ve told/been told clear, they realize that the truth is the best approach not only from a selfish one but a win-win for everyone!