Q Transmissions

A response to our US election show

Posted in letters by Heather on September 28, 2008

Ok.

Simple truths.

Politicians, regardless of stripe or creed or platform, will always lie. They will always cheat. They will always use public opinion. It is in their nature. Heck, it’s in all of our natures to better our own situations, often times by whatever means we find necessary and acceptable. Politicians are more apt and able to take advantage of that drive because they are more driven to succeed and gain power. It’s incredibly easy to subjugate good moral sentiment when you want to lead a country. Absolute power, or the pursuit of power at least, inevitably brings out the inner sociopath in all of us. Nobody is immune. Don’t expect an honest politician. If you want honest, go find a holy man because you’ll never find a politician surviving by honesty. Nader. As an example. He serves as nothing but an annoyance.

Furthermore, to win, you have to chamelion yourself. Public opinion is one of those things that needs to be harnessed, and if you want a majority of the vote, you need to cater to that majority. It is and always has been that way.

Is it really shocking or astounding that politicians do this? I would hope not, since this has played out time and time again since the very dawn of organized nature. Anyone shocked or saddened or amazed by this is far too naive for his or her own good.

And for better or worse, we the people eat it up. We love it. Deep down inside, we crave the drama and the backstabbing. It’s gladiatorial combat in a suit and tie. Civilized bloodsport. And even if we don’t, even if it is distasteful, we would do well to realize that this system will not change in the immediate future, and won’t ever change, regardless of action or the soapbox we stand on.

Alliances will shift. Records will be called into light, many things will harm many candidates, not because what they’ve done is directly harmful, but because they don’t know how to play the game. They don’t know how to backpedal or turn things back around. They don’t know how to play the game. It doesn’t matter what they do if they can justify it to the largest segment of voters.

Do I condone the system? No. But am I realistic enough to see that regardless of what we do, the system will stay intact? Absolutely. Let’s be honest. There isn’t anything anyone can do. So, sit back, watch the gladiators do their thing. At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter a lick who wins anyhow, because at the end of the day, one stuffed suit looking out for his own ends looks exactly like the other when he’s sworn in.

It is a depressing truth, but one best learnt.

Clay

and part two…

…If you were to do the research, I would bet good money that both campaigns employ a tremendous amount of very expensive PR and marketing manpower.  By what decision do you think the Mccain campaign chose Palin?  Perfect balance to Obama.  Star power.  And I think they didn’t let her do press conferences because, to carry a metaphor, not every shiny used car on the lot runs very well when you test all the doodads thoroughly.  And Palin, undoubtedly, is one hell of a shiny used car.  As long as she’s stationary, a prop, to use your words, she will draw a crowd.  Just don’t expect her to run very well when you put a mic to her head with no predetermined talking points.  She is useless as anything but a prop.

Anyhow, loved the show, and I would have called if I could!

Cyber high five!

Clay

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Post-show links

Posted in links by Desiree on September 27, 2008

Thanks to all tonight’s callers, listeners and emailers, and thanks as well to Ryan from the University of Alberta Atheists and Agnostics for coming to speak to us!

The sources we used in tonight’s show included:

factcheck.org – Non-partisan political fact-checking site.

politifact.com – Another non-partisan political fact-checking site… check both if you want to cover your skeptical bases.

opensecrets.org – Non-partisan guide to money’s influence on U.S. elections and public policy.

Science Debate 2008 – The candidates answers on science, technology and the future.

And quite honestly, the rest of the sources we looked at were so tilted towards one party or the other that they aren’t worth mentioning.

See you next week!

d

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On why politics are important to a skeptic

Posted in comics by Desiree on September 21, 2008

Visit xkcd for more comics.

d

Skepticism and Politics

Posted in upcoming shows by Michael on September 20, 2008

Hey all,

The next episode coming up is about applying skepticism to politics.  More info will follow.

Nice to see people on here, and thanks to everyone who called in.

To whet your appetites, check out this site, which is a great example of the application of non-partisan evidence-based analysis.

http://factcheck.org/

Michael

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