“Shut Up and [Facebook]”3
February 19, 2013 by liebestropfchen
I hadn’t intended to take such a long break from bloviating, but house hunting/moving/decorating is a very tedious and time-consuming process! Nonetheless, it’s only a matter of time before I find something that grinds my gears enough to get me venting again 🙂
Enter today’s topic, brought to you by a recent mass-forwarding of nonsense on Facebook regarding the way Social Security has changed so severely from FDR’s original proposal for the social program…oh, and it’s all the Democrats’ fault!! Literally shaking my head after reading the post, I now realize social media is quite the platform for regressive thought and “no one will ever know this is just crap if I end this paragraph with ‘Democrats Suck! Vote Republican!!’ or ‘Republicans Suck! Vote Democrat!!'” Puh-leaze.
I am pretty damned tired of Monday morning quarterbacks finding no better options in political discussion than to point fingers at an entire political party as having single-handedly sabotaged social programs over the last 70 years, and using this as gusto for why we must hate them all. Namely, the So-And-So Party have passed bills X, Y, and Z to make changes to Social Security, and now we’re all paying too much and taxed too high and over-worked and under-fed and under-paid and and AND ANNNNDDDD!!!!!
I’m sorry, but I prefer to have less juvenile political discussions, with substance and clear thought to back up one’s beliefs. Quoting excerpts from Wikipedia does not a debate make.
Simply put, voting on a particular piece of legislation (and the party politics involved) does not happen in a vacuum. Did we forget Congress isn’t comprised of all Democrats? Republicans were present, too. In actuality, 70% of Congressional Republicans voted in favor of major Social Security reform for the 1994 tax year, which included changes other than just tax-related measures. 70% means a majority of Republicans, who joined with Democrats to pass the changes…so I fail to see how this (and other pointless arguments) are “facts” that Democrats are out to sabotage America. Argument dismissed, can we have a real discussion now, preferably about where we are TODAY and what needs to be done TODAY?
It’s mighty easy with social media to spew a bunch of crap, and have people believe it without any ounce of thought. Annoying, definitely. But unless we all champion the ability to think for ourselves, and seek out our convictions, the bully pulpit of the lowest common denominator will be louder than those of the true problem-solvers of tomorrow.
Many years back, a popular book called “Shut Up And Sing” was published. The book’s author was taking jabs at Hollywood stars and Nashville singers (Dixie Chicks, namely) for getting too involved in political debate, because she was probably threatened that the youth of America paid more attention to über-cool singers and actors than one’s local congressperson for solid political advice. “Shut up and sing!” the author said, because apparently she felt American citizens should lose their right to bully pulpit somewhere between Hollywood or Broadway stardom and the Fox News commentator.
While it may be very inconvenient for the right-wing that role models for the American youth tend to be leftists, and they have a pretty loud bullhorn with which to spiel, everyone who’s anyone nowadays can bully pulpit on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and whatever tomorrow’s hot social media will be. The playing field has been leveled…which means we have an awful lot of watered down political thought. Bringing our ability to debate down to the LCD is probably going to be the ultimate demise of modern thought.
I hope the mid-term elections in 2014 will be less aggravating than the 2012 elections were, with respect to the amount of complete GARBAGE people pass around as fact. I hope we can have adult conversations, substantiated debate, and honest insight on the issues, rather than continuing this ridiculous game of “OMG those guys, like, are soooo evil, and like, the Democrats voted in 1994 to raise social security income tax rates to 85%, like it’s all their fault, yo! Vote for the cute guy!”
Just go back to Facebooking, and let the rest of us have a real debate, please.
I agree. The biggest problem today is that people just take what Joe Shmoe says as fact. I think that despite finding biased, unreliable sites that just agree with them, people also make the immense mistake of using personal experience as fact. “Well, my friend got fucked on ___, so that must mean that everyone is getting fucked on ___!” Once people start realizing that just because it happened to them that doesn’t mean it’s going to happen to others, or that it’s even a countrywide problem, we’ll all be better off.
Thanks for reading! You hit the nail on the head – using personal experience as fact rather than opinion is very misleading. Robbing the world of the beauty of individuality is so tragic.
. Your favorite jttiificasuon seemed to be on the web the easiest thing to be aware of. I say to you, I definitely get annoyed while people think about worries that they just do not know about. You managed to hit the nail upon the top as well as defined out the whole thing without having side-effects , people can take a signal. Will probably be back to get more. Thanks