Nov 24, 2010

A breakfast of tea -- and a big headache

Logic? Reason? Data? Fuggetaboutit!

How can we debate if the facts don't matter?

(Somewhere in the Catskills) --- Despite its major flaws, the US justice system does at least one thing right. Namely: it begins proceedings by establishing FACTS, via the introduction of Statements of Fact and their subsequent agreement by all parties involved. Example: Plaintiff was walking down Broadway at 11AM; Defendant was operating a car at the same time and on the same street; etc. The process moves from there.

That is what is missing from the current public policy discussion: the Red Meat crowd does not seem interested in operating from that initial foundation of facts. (To be fair, many on the other side are in the same boat).

Hence, today I heard things like this from my fellow diners (at a diner): "Gov't doctors will perform our annual physicals"; "I am now forced to provide health care to my 3 workers"; "all employers are required to leave their current plans"; .. and.. "the Dems are against extending all the Bush tax cuts"; "we need to balance the budget like Reagan did"; etc.

So, when you have people operating under these type of fallacies, how can the process / discussion / debate move forward in a reasonable and productive manner?

Then there is the absence of Logic. The usual "my premium is going up 21% , there's Obamacare for you" is all the rage. When some clown in the diner (guess who?) made the mistake of offering: "mine too, but its gone up at that rate each of the last 5 years, so how's that tied to the new act that doesn't really kick in this year?".. the reaction? Well: that's when the usual defense of name-calling and spitting kicks in.

Red/Blue? Dem/Rep? Lib/Con? I don't think so. I think the real divide taking place is more of an intellectual one. That's not to say there isn't plenty of room for debate and disagreements, mind you. But when the broadcast and landscape is dominated by people willing to swallow any 5-word slogan that best pushes their 'us vs them' hot buttons, then we're screwed from finding real fixes.

Elitist? Maybe. But does anyone have a better explanation?

Please don't think this craziness has run its course. Here's a preview:


A Patriot said...


Clare said...

I think your point has just been proven.

Ayn Rand's Nightmare said...

I don't know how we stop these Teabaggers. But we'd better figure it out pretty damn soon.

big black guy said...

I'm not quite as concerned. I chalk it up to the proverbial temporary moment of insanity.

Anonymous said...

The dumbing down syndrome.
I hope we've reached bottom. Can it get any dumber than these idiots?

Gary Coleman's Risen from the Grave said...

Tell ya what. Divert a few billion to my brothers and sisters, and we'll take care of these redneck honkies for ya.

Anonymous said...

This is why we need to require IQ tests in order to vote.