Deprecated: mysql_connect(): The mysql extension is deprecated and will be removed in the future: use mysqli or PDO instead in /home/a26f9f83/public_html/articles/includes/config.php on line 159
Voters are to Blame for Bad Politics > NetSparsh - Viral Content you Love & Share

Voters are to Blame for Bad Politics

When I was growing up, I actually considered a career in politics. I quickly changed my mind, though, when I discovered that there was way too much politics involved in it. Obviously, that's a play on words, but I get funny looks from people when I tell them that. However, I am completely serious. The politics of running for and holding elective office is influenced too much by the politics of power, influence, and money. But whose fault is it that such a condition exists? I believe voters have no one to blame but themselves.

As a voting public, we have become entirely too sophisticated for our own good. Many of us have made a habit of voting pragmatically, i.e., voting for the person we think has the best chance to win instead of the person we most agree with. We complain about wishy-washy politicians who won't give us straight answers, yet when people who say what they really think run for office, we dismiss them as being "loose cannons." When any candidate makes a statement that's evenly slightly out of the mainstream, it is considered such an egregious act that he or she either becomes marginalized or is forced to drop out of the race. What's left is a bunch of cautious and robotic weenies with their fingers in the wind - people who form their decisions based on polls and focus groups.

We say we want candidates who are different, but not too different. We say we want new ideas but we shun candidates that seem the least bit precocious. Therefore, we end up with the kinds of candidates we've always had.

I've often heard voters comment on candidates by making statements like "I couldn't imagine her being elected" or "he sends shivers down my spine." Most people will automatically exclude any candidate who would fit those kinds of descriptions. But should they? Sometimes good candidates come in packages that might be a little different or even a bit scary. By disqualifying those types of candidates, we could be missing out on some potentially great leaders. I wonder how many of today's sophisticated voters would consider someone like Andrew Jackson, Abraham Lincoln, or Teddy Roosevelt too much of a "nut" to be elected.

We like to say the issues are the important things to us. However, many of us vote based on personalities. For example, we will decide on a presidential candidate based on who seems the most "presidential" (whatever that means). We are also too concerned about meaningless ceremonial issues. For example, I bet some people wouldn't vote for an unmarried man for president because of their concern about the absence of a first lady. We also put too great of an emphasis on superficial issues such as aesthetics, i.e., how someone looks. Richard Nixon may have lost the 1960 election because he didn't look as good on TV as John F. Kennedy during their debate.

We also stress a candidate's education a little too much. Education is important, but it's not everything. Some of smartest people in the world never attended college. However, many of us wouldn't consider someone for any office higher than dog catcher unless he or she had at least a Bachelor's degree.

Many voters make their ballot selections based on personal greed instead of what's best for their country, state, district, or locality. They will reserve their votes for politicians whom they think will give them things and/or make life easier for them. Of course, Politicians constantly exploit this greed by making outlandish promises. Once these politicians are elected, they either have to renege on those promises or create budget deficits in order to bring them about.

Other voters, while not so much motivated by personal greed, will vote based on localized interests at the expense of the more general interests. For example, they might vote for a particular congressional candidate because they think he will bring a lot of goodies to their district. This mentality also helps to forge a cycle of promises, broken promises, and budget deficits. Until voters begin to put the general good ahead of personal and parochial interests, these problems will persist.

We like to blame the news media for all of the "gotcha" political stories that pry too deeply into the personal lives and distant past history of candidates and therefore keep many good and qualified people out the political arena. However, it is ultimately our fault because we eat that stuff up. We can't get enough of it. The more dirt the news outlets dig up on various candidates, the more we buy their newspapers and tune in to their TV and radio stations for more of those stories. The sad part is that we allow that stuff to influence our votes. Most of it is irrelevant to the issues at hand and should not be taken seriously by voters. We do usually ignore the parts about the candidates or parties we like, but we tend to believe the parts about the candidates or parties we don't like. Therefore, the news media keeps feeding us this garbage.

Last but not least, one of our biggest problems is our unwillingness to vote for independent or third party candidates. These candidates generally do not have obligations to party bosses or quid pro quo relationships with lobbyists like the major party candidates do. Very often, we will vote for the lesser of two evils, rather than an independent or third party candidate who might be much better. Of course, when you vote for the lesser of two evils, you're still voting for an evil. Many people feel like they would be wasting their vote by voting for any of those other candidates. This is simply not true. A voter only wastes his/her vote when he/she votes for someone he/she does not really like. Instead, we create a voting catch-22 for ourselves, i.e., no one will vote for Mr. Independent because he has no chance; Mr. Independent has no chance because no one will vote for him. If enough people decided to start voting their conscience, we could break that vicious cycle.

Terry Mitchell is a software engineer, freelance writer, and trivia buff from Hopewell, VA. He also serves as a political columnist for American Daily and operates his own website - http://www.commenterry.com - on which he posts commentaries on various subjects such as politics, technology, religion, health and well-being, personal finance, and sports. His commentaries offer a unique point of view that is not often found in mainstream media.

In The News:

This RSS feed URL is deprecated, please update. New URLs can be found in the footers at https://news.google.com/news

New York Times

On Politics: Kavanaugh Hearing Scheduled
New York Times
Good Tuesday morning. Here are some of the stories making news in Washington and politics today. • Brett Kavanaugh, the Supreme Court nominee, and the woman who accused him of sexual assault are set to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee ...


Axios

What startups should know about politics
Axios
Why it matters: Tusk has parlayed his career's lessons into a new book, “The Fixer: My Adventures Saving Startups from Death by Politics,” which he hopes can help startups operating in highly regulated industries like transportation, sports betting ...


New York Times

'Les Huguenots' Puts Religious Politics at Center Stage
New York Times
“We live at a time when, both in national politics and globally, religion is again being used as a vehicle for personal interests,” he said, citing as examples “a pogrom-like mood” against foreigners in Germany and people in the United States who ...


CNN

Dianne Feinstein, elected in the 'Year of the Woman,' navigates the politics of #MeToo
CNN
The criticism was an ironic twist in the lengthy political career of California's senior senator, who was the first female senator elected to represent the Golden State and one who has long been heralded as a champion of women's rights. Ever the enigma ...
Kavanaugh and the Politics of Bad FaithNew York Times
On Politics: Conway a voice of reason in Kavanaugh controversyWilkes Barre Times-Leader
The moral and political dilemma created by Kavanaugh's accuserFox News
USA TODAY -Los Angeles Times -ABC News
all 7,767 news articles »

The Atlantic

The Atlantic Politics & Policy Daily: 'We Need to Hear From Her'
The Atlantic
The Atlantic Politics & Policy Daily: 'We Need to Hear From Her'. Multiple Republican senators want to delay a vote on Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh until they learn more about the sexual-assault allegations against him from Christine Blasey ...


FiveThirtyEight

Politics Podcast: Kavanaugh's Confirmation Could Be In Trouble
FiveThirtyEight
Judge Brett Kavanaugh's prospects of confirmation to the U.S. Supreme Court changed significantly over the weekend after Christine Blasey Ford told The Washington Post that he sexually assaulted her when both were in high school. The FiveThirtyEight ...


New York Times

On Politics With Lisa Lerer: For GOP, Kavanaugh Is a No-Win Situation
New York Times
Hi. Welcome to On Politics, your guide to the day in national politics. I'm Lisa Lerer, your host. Remember last week, when Brett M. Kavanaugh seemed to be on a glide path to becoming a Supreme Court justice? Well, that's over. Mr. Kavanaugh's ...


The Hill

Obama's return to politics confirms his economic illiteracy
The Hill
As the midterms approach, President Obama has re-entered politics to accuse Republicans of serving as handmaidens of Wall Street, corporations and the rich with their Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017. Obama complained in two recent speeches that he has ...

and more »

Variety

Politics at the Emmys: Toning It Down on Trump
Variety
Here's an Emmy snub: Donald Trump. His name scarcely came up, if at all, during the 70th telecast. Instead, the jokes were aimed at Hollywood itself, including its struggles with diversity and the fallout from MeToo. “You know, it's an honor to be here ...
'Saturday Night Live,' politics, diversity could rule EmmysYahoo News

all 1,858 news articles »

New York Times

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and the Politics of a $3000 Suit
New York Times
Appropriating signifiers from across class lines is, of course, a standard political move used to memorable advantage by, among others, George W. Bush, who successfully masked his patrician origins every time he put on a pair of Wranglers, a cowboy hat ...
The Costs of a National Single-Payer Healthcare System | Mercatus CenterMercatus Center
Study: Sanders' Proposals Would Add $18 Trillion To Debt Over 10 YearsNPR
A no-nonsense conversation between Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Kerry WashingtonInterview
CNN.com - Transcripts
all 99 news articles »
Google News

A Need to Review Abortion Laws In Belgium

INTRODUCTIONThe aim of writing this article is to encourage the... Read More

Protecting Our Buses from International Terrorists

We know that the International Terrorists like the idea of... Read More

Going All Out to Win a War

Conventional warfare is getting to its limits. Soon wars will... Read More

Public Procurement and Very Private Benefits

In every national budget, there is a part called "Public... Read More

Making Peace with Our Ancestors and Neighbors

As a result of the conflict analysis exercise and a... Read More

Water Conservation, Retention and Better Policies

As the populations expand in Colorado outside of Denver, Las... Read More

Think You Dont Need A License for A Wireless Microphone? Think Again

Believe it or not, every theatre, church, or Britney Spears... Read More

Sodomy

Sodomy is against the law, yet goes on every day... Read More

Richard Nixon, the truth

Richard Nixon was by far a most fascinating and colorful... Read More

Questioning Both Sides of the GM Crop Debate

One question not addressed in GM Crops and Monsanto Terminator... Read More

Timber Dumping

Recently in Professional Builder a cover article discussed how the... Read More

Famous Filibusters in Political History

The filibuster as a political delaying tactic has been a... Read More

The Distributive Justice of the Market

(1) Each person is to have an equal right to... Read More

OSHA is just more BS from the Blob of Bureaucracy

Is Ohio Manufacturing Sector really unable to compete in the... Read More

What could Macedonia Learn from a Tiger? Asian Tigers and Uninterrupted Economic Growth

The first reaction of economies in transition is a sharp... Read More

Media and the Iraq War, Some Random Thoughts Indeed 2001

Here are some miscellaneous thoughts on issues many of which... Read More

How Can We Prevent Black Outs and Protect the Grid?

The idea is to have all the important items with... Read More

The ?Manchurian Candidate?: Lee Harvey Oswald?

An American soldier is taken behind enemy lines and brainwashed... Read More

Maryland Lawyers and Politicians Want More Regulations

We know that in Maryland, which some call "Merry Land"... Read More

The Contemporary Global Marketplace - IT, Software, and Services

"Had there not been outsourcing and utilization of cheaper resources... Read More

Bureaucracy Suffocating the Flow of Transportation

We are slowing the transportation flows of our civilization by... Read More

The Professions of the Future

Predicting the future is a tricky business. There have been... Read More

Africa?s Prosperity Goals: A Cultural Perspective

Commission for Africa (CFA), one is made to understand is... Read More

The Truth About Power and Absolute Zero

Societies have always had a problem of what to do... Read More

World Moving from Socialism to Capitalism

The recent Jakarta summit of Asia and Africa brought remembrance... Read More