Thursday, November 08, 2007

This should probably be more shocking

We've all seen a large variety of different polls going around, especially as of late. There have been polls asking people about their favorite political candidate, favorite web sites (not that we'd stoop to shameless plugging here), even polls to gauge just how much people prefer chocolate to peanut butter. But a recently released poll has given us results that we're not horribly surprised by.

A recent Pew Survey found that fewer than 60% of Americans actually trust the political wisdom of their fellow countrymen. In other words, we simply don't believe that we're politically savvy enough to make the right decisions when the time comes.

That should be frightening, and yet it seems fairly run-of-the-mill to us. After all, we've witnessed with our own eyes just how prone people in this country are to making snap (and poor) judgements regarding politicians. After all, we lived through the stewardship of Governor Jesse Ventura.

Of course, one of the reasons that this poll doesn't really surprise us is the polarized nature of political discourse at present. With the Red/Blue divide amongst states, and within, it's completely natural to expect that people espousing one particular political belief will be unable to trust the opposing group to make wise decisions. Then there's always the people who are confident that their own political party is full of insanity and poor choices, but we're not here to point fingers at Joe Lieberman.

Maybe one of the causes behind this poor decision making, and the lack of faith in the average American making well-informed decisions is the nature of the information being provided to us. After all, if we can't get the politicians to actually admit to any of their stances on an issue, how are we supposed to be savvy enough to make the right choices? And, if we're forced to rely on talking heads like Bill O'Reilly, Keith Olbermann, or Wolf Blitzer, how can we possibly wade through the slanted diatribes to come to any sort of justifiable conclusion?

This is why we propose that, after the Writer's Guild of America strike is over, we actively work to convince television pundits (and perhaps political speechwriters) to go on a strike of their own. It would at least help cut back on the garbage being strewn around.

Who knows? It might actually lead to more answers, and a better informed electorate. And how on earth could that be a bad thing?

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