Monday, October 27, 2008
Beware the voter educator
It is that time of year again. Time when some really creepy people come out and try to scare you to death. No, I am not talking about Halloween. I am talking about so called "voter educators."
As the days before an election wind down, the voter educators show themselves strongly. Often little more than smart alack new college graduates, the voter educators commit themselves to voter education projects meant on twisting voters point of views in favor of their candidates.
It takes a lot of arrogance. Those running so called voter education efforts come in and urge people to ignore their lifetime of experience in making choices at the polls and instead buy into propaganda. Some of the efforts will be made to make you think a candidate is downright evil. Other efforts, especially this year, dwell on a string of cliches that mean nothing, such as saying. "join us in making a change that is different," or "move forward to the future."
Well, first, change is different. There is no change that is not different, or it would not be change. Further, one can not move forward to anything but the future. It is simply impossible to move forward into the past. It is sort of like saying, "if the suns comes up, it is a new day." Who can argue with such? But, does it say anything of substance that matters? No.
Voter education efforts are geared at getting otherwise rational people to check their reason at the voting booth to act irrational and upon emotion. The smart alack politicos running such voter education efforts arrogantly believe that people are stupid and can be easily manipulated into to voting for one candidate or another based upon some pseudo education effort that is nothing more than mass propaganda.
However, people fall for the political propaganda more than they do in any other aspect of life. Suppose a used car salesman pitched the following to someone. "Sure, the car I want you buy has an engine that does not run. However, think of the change you will be making for the future in that you will own a car that does not use fuel and does not add to pollution. You will be part of the hopeful change we need in that you will have a car that does not use fuel." Chance are, if one was rational, one would tell that salesman where to place that car without a working engine.
However, in politics, people seem to eagerly embrace such nonsense. If the car sales business were ran like politics, people would answer the salesman with "Of course I will buy the car without the working engine, because I hope for the change we need, and the change I can make with this car will give me hope. "
It is frankly amazing to me how stupid a good many voters get come election time. It is amazing how easily they are manipulated by propaganda from both sides. So called voter education projects just seem to dumb down the voters even more. As a result, it seems the candidates who say things that mean nothing well end up winning elections. And, then we as a people wonder why those we elect seem inept in addressing problems.
Perhaps we, the people, are the problem. We need to be leery of so called "voter educators" and empty words that sound good from candidates. We need to use our own brains and life experiences to make rational choices at the polls. Why shouldn't we at the least apply the same reasoning capabilities to our leaders who govern over us and take a chunk of our incomes that we do the guy trying to sell us a car?