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Politics / Polarization
Appears Not to Comprehend Game Fundamentals Appears Not to Comprehend Game Fundamentals
on June 17, 2013, 08:40:32 PM by Reptile
I whipped out this mini-paper on polarization in american politics in about an hour, just sharing. Didn't proofread or whatever, drank a few beers before writing... discuss, comment, read, etc... vast majority is opinion.

Polarization, Public Opinion, and Politics

Polarization is American politics is an ever-changing, self-sufficient, cyclical process and entity—respectively meaning it’s always evolving, polarization in itself is dependent upon it’s aspect of two-party competition, and ultimately this intertwinement has developed into a cycle with many relevant factors and reasons. First and foremost, in my own experience polarization is a guise to add control to the situation; the situation being American society or even more specifically the American electorate. This obviously means that I do not place the fault of a polarized electorate on the actual electorate itself. Politicians, the media, and special-interest groups are who I blame. These three categories are essentially the same political machine; all working for mutual benefit so they can figuratively meet behind the curtains and split what’s inside the briefcase afterwards. Polarization works to all of their benefit, so they attempt to polarize the country and successfully do so being that our nation is the most polar it has been since the Civil War.

I personally feel that both Fiorina’s argument and Wilson’s rebuttal made worthy and valid points. There is indeed an assumption that Americans have become more divided on cultural and social issues; and of course in a literal sense this assumption is correct. I am also sold on the reason Fiorina attributes for this occurrence: “political elites, particularly candidates for office, have become more polarized along party and ideological lines, thus changing the choices available to voters.” This basically means that the aforementioned political elites are in a position to mold our opinions on things, and to their delight social and cultural issues seem to be the easiest way to do so. Wilson additionally points out that it’s not just political elites and candidates, but American politics as a whole that’s causing this polarization. By American politics, he means “congressional elections, media, interest groups, and education”. I whole-heartedly agree with this as well. In particular, interest groups are the determining factor in congressional elections these days, and media is the primary way for the electorate’s opinion to be swayed.(Kernell and Smith)

The first thing that comes to mind concerning Popkin’s argument is this quote from Federalist 62: “if the laws be so voluminous that they cannot be read, or so incoherent that they cannot be understood; if they be repealed or revised before they are promulgated, or undergo such incessant changes that no man, who knows what the law is to-day, can guess what it will be to-morrow.”(Madison).
I can’t help but point out that revered men from two and a half centuries ago saw this coming so Popkin really isn’t telling us anything new here. Legislation was drafted to be a preventative measure to this; briefly put, law that’s incoherent to the electorate is not law. The problem with this law is that the distinctions it suggests are about as known and defined as fair-play is with redrawing voting district lines(the fine-lines and subtleties are abused similarly to gerrymandering). In short, Popkin argues that the information and choices presented to the electorate is either biased or incomplete therefore leading voters to make irrational decisions. Jacobson argues that the elections, and the political machines that surround them, are the producers of polarization in politics. This makes a far better point in my opinion being that it’s the special interest groups only backing Republicans and Democrats that makes political elections a mere two-horse race. It’s in the best interests for these groups and the candidates to intensify this two-party-only competition so it’s equally apparent as to why both would want and encourage the electorate to be more polar. I would go inasmuch to say that this could very well be the primary cause of polarization, although it’s a very difficult call to make.(Kernell and Smith)

Studies show that most voters are moderate or independent, especially eligible voters that do not vote by choice. Historically it takes a highly exceptional president to draw this aforementioned group of people out of hibernation and to the voting booth, and it’s something our country has not seen in quite some time. Studies also show that the people more likely to vote in elections are the ones that feel more passionately about political issues. However, those who belong and/or identify themselves alongside the extremities of the two polarizing ideologies are the vast minority of the electorate. This makes it no surprise that about half of the country typically doesn’t vote, but it’s still counter-intuitive being that half of us still do vote. So the next question is obvious—what are the reasons for the actively voting moderate electorate to be swayed to one ideology or the other? This question is not easy to answer.(Todd)

In order to address the question/issue above, I think it’s relevant to cite this quote in regard to public opinion: “Individual opinions, though rooted in personal values and experiences, are both shaped by and expressed through leaders and institutions.”(King). In my experience it’s disingenuous to the extreme to blame the values and experiences of American society. Of course this is circumstantial and there is some blame on us being that we have developed into a polarized nation that literally chooses the news that they want to hear, but there must be a primary cause for this. I think that this primary cause via the quote above are the leaders and institutions; the ‘shapers’—and that is where the blame should be assigned. However, in order for blame to be assigned people actually have to acknowledge and designate it, and that’s something the electorate as a whole has serious difficulty with. I attribute this difficulty to the shapers as well as some of the scholarly articles that served as the basis for this paper did.

Polarization is a very interesting concept that plays a huge role on our lives as Americans. Although I do place the primary cause on the political machine caused by leaders, money, and special-interest groups, in order to understand the political poles in their entirety I feel it necessary to refer to back to my thesis. “Polarization is American politics is an ever-changing, self-sufficient, cyclical process and entity—respectively meaning it’s always evolving, polarization in itself is dependent upon it’s aspect of two-party competition, and ultimately this intertwinement has developed into a cycle with many relevant factors and reasons”—the electorate may not be the direct or primary cause of polarization, but stating the reason for polarization as us being victimized by the process would be wrong. To me, doing so is the equivalence of submitting oneself to the aforementioned cycle.
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Politics / Re: Oh,LOL...
Flawless Logic Flawless Logic
on June 10, 2013, 09:00:36 PM by Focalor
Dodgebotting my question I see.
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Politics / Re: Oh,LOL...
Flawless Logic Flawless Logic
on June 10, 2013, 08:38:35 PM by Focalor
Have you tried out the new holy water version?
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Politics / Re: Oh,LOL...
Obvious Troll Is Obvious Obvious Troll Is Obvious
on June 10, 2013, 06:43:47 PM by Reptile
DANCE PUPPET, DANCE!!!

:bubbles:
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Politics / Re: Oh,LOL...
Offtopic Offtopic
on June 10, 2013, 05:50:53 PM by Reptile
Dodgebotting my question I see.
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Politics / Re: Oh,LOL...
Flamebait Flamebait
on June 10, 2013, 04:49:56 PM by Reptile
Have you tried out the new holy water version?
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Politics / Re: Oh,LOL...
Flawless Logic Flawless Logic
on June 09, 2013, 10:47:15 PM by Focalor
"How can you have collected information only on bad guys, when you have collected information on all of us?"

This guy(I am very familiar with him, I forget his name though at the moment) is just a damn broken record. The "Metadata" is simply a cross-reference to KNOWN terrorist phone numbers. They cross-reference KNOWN terrorist phone numbers against their metadatabase of received and sent calls in the nation. They see and hear no content, unless they actually get a match, THEN they have to get approval to investigate it further.

I mean... I feel like asking this dumbass: "If someone was sending and receiving calls from a KNOWN terrorist in our country, would you disapprove of NSA investigating it??"

^that is a more valid question than a dozen of the ones he presented. I'm still unsure about it all myself, but I certainly disagree with the principle behind it like I said. Perhaps I'm a bit hard on the guy, but over-simplifications and out-of-context shit just makes one's credibility go down in my book, despite any other points made.
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Politics / Re: Oh,LOL...
Flawless Logic Flawless Logic
on June 09, 2013, 10:45:11 PM by Focalor
Being unsure about things that happen in politics isn't having a limited knowledge or interest about it...it's simply a smart approach. Most of everyone interpreted that like I just put it; you didn't because you would know nothing about a smart approach to politics as demonstrated in the past.

So, there was nothing factually challenged about my post, I'm glad you agree. And I also agree that your time is better spent doing things you "want to do", which obviously doesn't include discussing this with me where you look stupid as shit.
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Politics / Re: Oh,LOL...
Flawless Logic Flawless Logic
on June 09, 2013, 10:42:35 PM by Focalor
And you obviously wouldn't use that video to represent that point either, btw.

As far as a news source is concerned, the situation could be far different than how is depicted in 3 months from now(since I referenced that time frame earlier..) just like almost everything is. Assuming otherwise is just as disingenuous as assuming the said institution of gov't won't abuse their powers though, imo. I was just acknowledging that.
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Politics / Re: Oh,LOL...
Flawless Logic Flawless Logic
on June 09, 2013, 10:40:02 PM by Focalor
Oh I know lol. I don't disagree with you on any of this, not to make your points seem unnecessary or something. You should keep in mind that I was specifically responding to that video when saying that, it will COMPLETELY put the quote from him into context that I took out if you give it a watch.. you likely will want to flip it off though, in fact I discourage you from even watching it and just take my word for it :raincloud:

The only purpose this discussion is serving is to give golgo the opportunity to rate down whatever post of mine, yet give positive ratings to anyone who discusses something alongside me...(although he has "better" things to do).
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