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

Latest On Immigration Politics
NPR
Republican lawmakers in the House have punted on immigration once again, delaying a vote on the measure. Facebook; Twitter; Flipboard; Email. Subscribe to the NPR Politics Podcast. Listen on NPR One · Apple Podcasts · Google Play Music · RSS ...


The Atlantic

The Atlantic Politics & Policy Daily: Do U Care?
The Atlantic
On her way to McAllen, Texas, to see what's been happening at the border, first lady Melania Trump donned an olive green jacket that read, “I don't really care. Do U?” Lena FeltonElaine Godfrey. Jun 21, 2018. Kevin Lamarque / Reuters. -Written by Lena ...


Pew Research Center

The news that bots share on Twitter tends not to focus on politics
Pew Research Center
Since the 2016 U.S. presidential election, much attention has been focused on the role of bots in promoting political news on Twitter. But bots can play a role in spreading many other types of news and information as well. Indeed, a new Pew Research ...


Washington Free Beacon

All Politics Is Trump
Washington Free Beacon
What's your favorite political cliché? Mine is the quip of former Speaker of the House Tip O'Neill: "All politics is local." Might be true for congressmen, whose longevity in office depends on the attention they pay to their districts. But it fails to ...


The Hill

In gerrymandering case, Supreme Court punts on politics
The Hill
When is a decision not a decision? When the Supreme Court shies away from politics. Historically, the justices have been loath to get their hands dirty by intervening in political disputes. Bush v. Gore was a rare exception and they only intervened ...

and more »

The Economist

Politics this week
The Economist
Nikki Haley, America's ambassador to the UN, said the body protected abusers of human rights and was a “cesspool of political bias”, especially against Israel. The council's supporters retort that the council does some good, and that if democracies ...


mySanAntonio.com

Beyond politics and nationalism to morality
mySanAntonio.com
Separating immigrant families is beyond politics, it's beyond national security and it's beyond the law. Separating immigrant parents and children from one another is a moral issue. It is a moral issue collectively for our society and it is a moral ...

and more »

New York Times

'Luke Cage' Season 2: A New Villain and Respectability Politics
New York Times
Unfortunately, it's part of being black and conscious in America.” In a phone interview, Mr. Coker, 45, discussed the new season's female directors and Caribbean influences, his disregard for respectability politics and his unabashed love for all ...

and more »

The Atlantic

The Atlantic Politics & Policy Daily: A Sign of the Times
The Atlantic
The Atlantic Politics & Policy Daily: A Sign of the Times. President Trump signed an executive order he said would end his administration's policy of separating families at the border. Lena FeltonElaine Godfrey. Jun 20, 2018. Pablo Martinez Monsivais / AP.
GOP Lawmakers Hope Trump's Border Action Heads Off Political ThreatNew York Times
Why he caved: Inside Trump's rare reversalCNN
Kamala Harris says DHS chief should resign over immigrant family separationsSan Francisco Chronicle

all 7,051 news articles »

Washington Post

A case study in the proper role of Christians in politics
Washington Post
On the issue of child separation, President Trump had to be dragged kicking and screaming into basic humanity. His initial goal was to create terror in migrants without provoking revulsion in the broader public. He failed. Trump may be immune to ...

and more »
Google News

PTO - Patent and Trademark Office needs complete overhaul

Recently in Maine, I talked with a gentleman and we... Read More

Cracking Down on Cigar Counterfeiters

In the most rewarding new industries, there is often a... Read More

Council of Six

The head of the Club of Rome has said that... Read More

911 Could Have Been Prevented, Was It Bush?s Fault?

September 11, 2001 could have been prevented. We could have... Read More

Environmentalism and Roads in Our Forests

Many environmentalists are against roads through the forest because it... Read More

Preparing to Invade Japan

This is the fourth and final article in a series... 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

Gas Prices and the Impact of Inflation

Year Item Price Rate of Inflation 03/80 Gasoline (per gallon)... Read More

Hillary Says Health Care Can Be Fixed with IT

The great leader and Senator from New York and wife... Read More

Boston Bankers

Many people make a lot of money in war. In... Read More

The History of Trade and Using it as a Weapon for Peace

The Flow of Trade is a major consideration of civilizations... Read More

The Self-Appointed Altruists

Their arrival portends rising local prices and a culture shock.... Read More

How Many Cases Will Elliot Spitzer Lose Now?

The devastating loss in case of Elliot Spitzer for NY... Read More

The Fabric of Economic Trust

Economy is called the dismal science because it pretends to... Read More

Sweet Lies, The Aspartame Issue

Aspartame activists are constantly being attacked because all data are... Read More

George Bush--A New World Order

When this president's father was in the Oval Office, he... Read More

Immigration: Ten Points to Ponder

1. Why is it that no one seems to notice,... Read More

Spies in Seminaries - Stalin the CEO

The use of religion is well-documented as a social engineering... Read More

Patriots and Parrots: Imprisoning Tongues in America

It can be dangerous to engage in free speech. This... Read More

Dealing With UK Water Rates Debts: What You Need To Know

UK Water RatesYOU CANNOT BE DISCONNECTED FOR WATER RATES DEBTSWater... Read More

Counter Intelligence: Accurate Words to Describe Our Dealings with Islamic Terrorists!

Introduction:Although politicians and so-called "Intelligence Experts" are the ones appearing... Read More

Fight Terror, With Education

A War on Terrorism? Conventional war being brought on an... Read More

The Dawn On The Nile Valley Has Secrets To Tell! (2)

Submiting the Criminals to The ICC!Everybody concerns about justice in... Read More

The Revolt of the Poor: The Demise of Intellectual Property?

Three years ago I published a book of short stories... Read More

Army recovers terrorists? bodies from avalanche-hit areas in South Kashmir

As the death toll in the avalanche-hit Jammu and Kashmir... Read More