Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Do you know how to run a country?

The political "game" is coming to our state.  South Carolina will hold it's primary after New Hampshire.  So, now, many of the candidates are starting to spend their super pac money in our state by buying TV ads and making computer-generated phone calls. 

On Facebook I have "friended" Issac Bailey, a local columnist for the MB Sun News, and he often starts on-line discussions there. I think he uses FB for subject ideas and even once quoted responses in his newspaper column, (Yes, he used one of my comments - anonymously).   Today he brought up the topic of last night's Iowa caucus' winners and losers.   There are a few "regular" responders, one of them is named Frank.  Frank and I had a little "back and forth" online because we have different views on our current president and on political parties in general, and the direction our country is going.  After a few minutes of it I told Frank that we won't change each other's views and let's agree to disagree.  I said "that's why we each get one vote on election day." Have a nice day.

I have sat around tables with friends, and even with family, anad when talk turns to political leaders and the system of government we live in, sides are taken.  

It got me thinking. Why is it people can get so heated in political discussions?  Why do we feel we know what's best for our country and think less of those who don't feel the same way?  Why do we Americans get mad at Congress when they really seem to be a "mini-America" when it comes to knowing what is best for us?  Their minds are made up too.  There's no changing them.  It was kind of an "a-ha!" moment for me.  I have been one of those people so disgruntled with our senators and representatives.  I have also been disgruntled with the many media sources who seem to be biased and create controversary for ratings. 

But we "normal" Americans can't have a discussion about our country without taking a stance either, often putting up a wall, and being totally unable to hear the other side.  We are "proud" of our commitment to a person or party.  We get the attitude:  my person will make everything better, and your person will destroy America.  All or nothing.  Good vs. bad.

How did this happen?  I suppose we do have the media to blame a bit. We have the candidates themselves to blame - and the people they employ who "spin" what happens.  But most of all we have ourselves to blame thinking we know how to run a country, and who is best to do it. 

I'm not looking forward to the mean-ness that is starting here as the state prepares for the Primary.  But, I'm going to TRY to listen before I speak back, and I'm going to then make the effort to think about what way we can act together for the good of America.  The mindset of "my way or no way" won't get us anywhere.


  1. I think partly now too, there really are two very different viewpoints as to how the country should be managed. Fifty years ago there was less of a difference between the major parties.

    In my opinion a huge part of the problem is that we now have 24/7 airtime to be filled. Ugh. Take Iowa for instance-one little state and really the results were not overwhelming in any way, yet the newspeople carry on and on (and on and on) as if this is the end all, be all.

    The thing I really dislike is the way the media trys to tell us what to think and they definitely sway popular opinion. Remember when the news just reported what was happening in the world, without throwing in all the analyses and their own .02? I miss that.