Why Is This Election So Shocking?

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

After the debates, I see a lot of this on Facebook:

"Both sides were being vague and telling half-truths! Soooo frustrating!"

"Here's what drives me nuts about this Presidential race - where is the truth? Each candidate slurs the truth to make themselves look better while demonizing their opponent. It's so dirty and I hate the lies from both sides. Also they never say exactly what they plan to do - it's all pointless rhetoric. What happened to honesty and integrity?"

"The debate was just a bunch of 'you're a liar!' 'No you are!' 'No you are!"

I agree with these statements. The fact that I agree shouldn't come as a surprise because guess what? I'M A HUMAN BEING.

Why is it that so many people are acting so shocked when a politician, well... acts like a politician? Politicians have been vague and finger-pointing SINCE THE BEGINNING OF TIME. 

I mean, don't get me wrong- I love that there are so many who are sincerely seeking truth in politics. It's an optimistic road to travel down and they should be commended. We all should be seeking truth in politics. I look for the truth a lot, but I stopped being frustrated a looong time ago when I could rarely find it. It's just amazing to me how angry people are when they can't look at snopes.com and see the "facts." 

I've decided to blame this on the internet and social sharing. When we want to know how many cups are in a quart we Google it. When we want to know the best restaurant in Seattle, we ask our friends on Facebook. Typically, we get good results from people we trust. The truly irritating thing about politics is that you can't Google it. There are very few sites that are neutral to the issues and who are not pushing an agenda. And you can't ask your friends on Facebook without starting a firestorm on your wall that makes your notifications look like it's your birthday. 

What is your theory of why so many people are so frustrated and surprised that they can't figure out what the truth is? Have you found an unbiased source that helps you sort out what is fact and what is fiction?

-Note that I did not ask for your political view, platform or why the guy you are voting against sucks. 


  1. So true Carrie! I love your paragraph about not being able to google it! It's like the only thing left that isn't google-able!

  2. AMEN SISTER!!! The sad part is there is no "unbiased" reporting anymore. Even the networks have an agenda. I once saw Charlie Gibson say he didn't vote for many years because he didn't want to have to pick sides because as a journalist you should remain unbiased. Sad that we can't look to that same mindset anymore. It is destroying our country as no one is willing to work with the other if they watch a different news network than the other does or goes to work on separate sides of the aisle.

  3. uugh i don't have an answer to your question but i avoid facebook and twitter on debate nights because it just pisses me off. if someone posts an article that's like, "mitt romney saves puppies in his spare time!" everyone that already liked romney comments and says, "wow, what an enlightening article!" and everyone who doesn't scrolls past the link, rolls their eyes, and says, "what a misinformed douchebag." POSTING CRAP ON FACEBOOK/TWITTER DOESN'T CHANGE ANYONE'S OPINION!! and it irritates me. i just want to see pictures of babies and funny commentary on the bachelor/ette on my social media, okay?! ::rant over::

  4. haha notifications like it's your birthday.

    Basically people are frustrated because, in the end, nobody actually wants a politician to run to country in the first place.

    And yes, I just used "in the end" and "in the first place" in the same sentence. But that's what happened.

  5. Carrie, I think you hit the nail on the head when you talked about the "information age." The vast majority of the human knowledge base is available at our fingertips in a matter of seconds. It's even portable, if you have a smartphone. What the internet DOESN'T provide is an understanding of complex systems. (That sentence = Liz is a nerd.) But really. The internet can explain to you how to re-upholster a chair, but it doesn't really help you understand the social history behind the shape, color, and pattern of that chair. At least not on ONE site. Which is why I'm a huge advocate of multiple sources. Visit biased websites and see what they say, as long as they're opposing. Ask questions. The more sources, the more you can weed out the bias and get to the heart of an issue. I think the truth IS out there, it just takes a lot of work to get to, and most people aren't willing to do that work. But that practice, along with the guidance of the Spirit, is a great source of truth.

    And I think I might blog about this, because I've just been thinking about it a lot, and it might sound a little self-righteous, but here's THIS thought. As annoying as political facebook and twitter and blog posts ARE, it's pretty incredible that we can make them. Without, you know, fearing for our lives. In a global context, there are plenty of people who would LOVE to be able to post a political rant on facebook. Just recently, a teenage girl in Pakistan was shot in the head because she dared to make politically charged statements on the internet. So while I, just like many, get annoyed with closed-minded statements (AKA "things I disagree with") on the internet, I think it's important to note that people have died so that we can make those statements. The freedom of speech is not a universal privilege, and I am grateful for all the annoying facebook/twitter/blog politico-speech, just because it's evidence of the 1st amendment in action.

    Also, Brandilyn, I think this is the first time in the world I've ever disagreed with you about anything, but I'm not sure that posting things online doesn't change anyone's opinion. I think there are a lot of people out there who do take those things into account when forming an opinion. Maybe I'm giving people too much benefit of doubt, but I like to think that a handful of people would say, "What?! Romney saves puppies? I'm going to look into this" and begin checking things out, examining them from different sides, spreading their understanding.


I like to hear all of the beautiful things you have to say.