It's been a long time since I "blogged" here. We've bought a new house, made a long distance move and I've had knee-replacement surgery -- all since the last post. So now I'm back.
Thoughts: I'm deeply saddened and utterly horrified at the turn political discourse has taken in this country. I blame the National Education Association for a good deal of it. For the past thirty+ years we have not taught children to think for themselves. We have allowed -- even encouraged -- them to believe the first thing they read; to take the media at face value and not to question what they're told by so-called "experts." We haven't taught them the most rudimentary facts about government -- the statistics on what the average "man.woman in the street" knows about current events, American history and politics in general are frightening. Frightening because these people vote!
The past few years I've been a poll worker at elections -- primaries (very sparsely attended) and national as well as local elections. Too many voters say they haven't had time to read about more than one or two issues or candidates so they just guess at the rest.
I like to watch The View on television -- it's a rather shallow program that ABC touts as serious discussion. I say shallow because it's mainly a forum for espousing the political stands of the Democratic Party. They have a token Republican to give the impression that they're "fair and balanced" but the guest list leans heavily to the left politically and most of the opinions offered by the hosts simply spout the Democratic line.
The shallowness of so much of the discussion is typified by Joy Behar, who recently criticized Michael Chertoff (US Secretary of Homeland Security) because she didn't like his looks. Behar states her opinions as if they were facts, i.e. "Everyone knows the war in Iraq is a mistake." No, Joy. EVERYONE includes me and many of my friends and we do NOT believe the war in Iraq is or was a mistake. I believe it was a necessity. But I remember how Saddam Hussein defied the UN for decades, shot at American planes and used weapons of mass destruction against the Kurds in his own country.
“A lie told often enough becomes truth” said Vladimir Lenin. Actually it doesn't become truth, but people begin to believe it. Joseph Goebbels, Hitler's propaganda minister not only believed that, he acted on it and proved it to be true. That's the theory Behar operates under whether she realizes it or not. I suspect she's not bright enough to understand what she's doing. She certainly has not come up with an original thought when I've been watching the show.
Barbara Walters, whose opinions also seem to favor leftist politics, at least gives the impression that she has the ability to listen and evaluate. Elizabeth Hasselbeck defends conservative positions with vigor and enthusiasm but she, too, seems limited to the same old conservative arguments.
The most alarming thing about political discussion, however, is the hate talk.
It comes from both sides. although the strongest and loudest seems to be from Democrats who hate the President. They feed rumors and outright lies to each other, repeating them again and again until they are convinced that the President is the problem when, in reality, they are. No one dares say that on the dailykos.com, for example, or to Behar.
The question is, will we destroy our American republic because we insist on believing rumors and half-truths?