Tuesday, September 09, 2008

People, Politics, Understanding

People are always talking about a political base. I never totally understood that completely. The reason I never understood it is because if you ask a member of one political party who their base is and the political base of their opponent is, you would get one answer. Ask an opponent this same question and you would get an entirely different answer. Can anyone give me an answer?

Another thing I never really understood is when a politician makes a decision; he is accused of caving in to certain pressure groups. This is especially true when the decision is not one the accuser favors. He is never depicted as making the decision on his own. It’s as if politicians are viewed as nothing but robots without a mind of their own. Is there a reason for this?

One more thing that I never could completely understand is the judging of our representatives by the donations that are given to his campaigns. It was always my understanding that political donations were indicative of a donor’s support of that politician’s positions. Making accusations, on that sole basis, is to declare that the people have elected a corrupt politician without any substantiating evidence. Do we need to win that bad?

I also don’t understand the idea of not accepting evidence to the point of not examining it based solely upon the bias of the presenter of that evidence. Being biased in regards to a certain issue has nothing to do with presenting truthful or credible evidence. Only those afraid of the idea of being convinced otherwise would discount evidence based solely on bias. If the evidence is flawed, then point out the flaws. If it be a lie, expose the lie. If it be slanted, neutralize it. If it is truthful, then accept it. is not the possibility of learning the truth deserving of this?

Bias is looked upon as a negative trait in man yet how can any man be true unto himself without being biased? Prejudice, is there any man that can honestly declare they are free of that trait? Is it the possession of these traits that is wrong or is it how we use these traits that we should be judged by?

But then again, I don’t understand a lot of things about how people behave. Maybe that is what makes life itself so exciting and people such an interesting subject. If life was to be as expected or desired it would be boring to most people. We seek perfection in life but I have often wondered if man could actually handle it if it was possible to exist. It would appear that the journey is far more important than reaching the goal. Could we handle perfection?

Come to think about it, I really don’t understand myself either. I know what I am. I know what I believe. I know how I feel about certain things and people. Nevertheless, as I look around me, there are times when I feel as if I do not belong in the place I’m in. I speak but no one hears. I touch but I feel nothing. I listen but no one speaks to me. I laugh but I find that I can only laugh at myself. Yet, I know I would not want to be anything else other than what I am even with all of my imperfections and faults.


BB-Idaho said...

Bias is interesting. Without getting into the underlying philosophies of perception & senses, it appears to be natural to us homo sapiens. Probably because it saves rethinking every
subject each time it comes up..the brain likes to save RAM, so to speak. It can be a hinderance in areas of objective decision making, for example in diagnosing patient symptoms. Or, in my case, tinkering with the modem for two days before finding out the cable
was broken across the street). So, bias/pre-judgement can can lead us astray..and we fight to suppress it, as a good physician/diagnostician does as part of their job. Bias combines with emotion to give us 'gut feel', which sometimes, as in an emergency, is better than pondering pros & cons. It also
is an achilles heel which marketing departments enjoy exploiting. Since bias is natural, it is neither inherently good or bad. But it is helpful if we recognize it in ourselves. Of course that is just my biased opinion. :)

The Griper said...

" But it is helpful if we recognize it in ourselves. Of course that is just my biased opinion. :)"

he smiles, apparently we share the same bias. in recognition of it, it acts as a brake when we speak out on some issues, making us think a little deeper.

Lista said...

The most current answer relating to the current situation is that the Conservative Base of the Republican Party is those who hold to the traditional values of the Republican Party, such as Pro-Life and Marriage between a Man and a Women, not Homosexual Marriage.

Some may give other answers, though, such as anything at all that causes Republicans to dislike the Republican pick of John McCain and this could include anything that McCain supports that many other Republican's don't.

Still others might describe the Political Base of the Republican Party as having more to do with financial concepts, such as Low Taxes and Small Government or the Trickle Down Idea.

The general rule, though, is that if a large enough group of people within the party believe in a certain thing and that idea is abandoned, than there will be conflict in the party.

It is very true that people often do judge without knowing the facts, yet as to the research idea, unfortunately, there is a lot of biased research out there, so we do need to be careful, yet to judge it as biased without even taking the time to look at it is a bias in itself.

I think bias is only wrong when we allow it to excessively dominate our thinking and to get in the way of our ability to also think objectively.

I've wondered myself about perfection, Griper. I've even wondered if Heaven is going to be just a little boring. Now there's a crazy thought. Hopefully, the Lord has designed something about it that will be interesting.

The last paragraph in your post makes it sound like you are having trouble feeling connected. Since I've started blogging, I've felt way more connected to people than I used to. The people that I interact with in person talk about such boring things.

The Griper said...

not so much feeling connected, lista, but feeling as deeply connected as i'd like at times, the borg connection as opposed to the human connection. lol but i'd like to think that is normal and occurs to us all at times.

BB-Idaho said...

The 'political base' is a lot like sports fans: between Minneapolis and Green Bay there are packer fans and viking fans, typically more concentrated as the home city is approached..but in the hinterlands they are interspersed.
Like the political base, they brag about their success and rationalize their failures. So, in some respects, we find comfort
in those that agree with us..we become part of the 'base'. Politics, being complex in nature, finds, as Lista notes, groupings of special interests within the overall base. For some it is one over-riding issue, for others a general mindset. For yet others,
conflicted souls, there is agreement with some of their party
goals, agreement with some of the other party goals: independents.
IMO, the rancor level has been increasing for some time, where
Americans almost consider each other enemies..common ground is a quiet dead space relegated to our proud history.

The Griper said...

he looks at what his two friends wrote the looks again, scratches his head then rereads what he wrote then grins as he says "yup"

Lista said...

When I was looking again at your very first comment, the phrase "Bias combines with emotion to give us 'gut feeling'." and was wondering how the "Still Small Voice" which is attributed to God's voice speaking to our hearts fits into that. I guess that there are some who do not believe in this, yet I have actually found times in which I seem to know things that I really have no way of knowing and yet for some reason I just do and it's accurate.

Amen in that the recognition of bias acts as a brake. Some people do not seem to have this break.

The interesting thing about me is that if I feel connected on an intellectual level, my need to feel connected on an emotional level is not as strong. Sometimes the icing on the cake is really really sweet and wonderful, but I can eat the cake without the icing if I have to.

I guess that's just my way of saying that if I never personally meet any of you, I'll still be Ok.

"Common ground is a quiet dead space relegated to our proud history."

Yes, and both sides fear the "Slippery Slope" so much that there can be no compromise, though to be honest with you, I think that that Republicans have done most of the compromising in the past and I really think that it's the Liberal's turn to do so.

BB-Idaho said...

"I think that that Republicans have done most of the compromising in the past and I really think that it's the Liberal's turn to do so." Please list the compromises made by the Republicans in the past?


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