You know how I like to use a song title or whatever for my titles, and I could use this one for so many things, but I think I’ll let politics win this one. Or politicians, anyway.
Let me begin by making my usual remark that I hate politics. But I don’t really mean that, because you can’t. What politics actually means is “the methods by which we run society” and you can’t really hate that. You can disagree with versions of it, but unless you are completely apathetic over how it’s done you can’t exactly hate that there is a choice here.
Unfortunately all too often these days when people talk about politics what they mean is a very silly running argument about which party is best. It is party politics I can’t stand. This whole “there are only two ways to do anything, and my party has chosen all the right ones forever amen” is completely ridiculous. So, let’s get that out of the way right now. It’s just too silly for words.
What we have, are people elected to represent us, who may or many not truly represent the electorate. They may have all manner of personal motivations. Some of these motivations may be a long way removed from representing anyone but themselves.
So, what we tend to do is call them dishonest, and many are. Unfortunately the system itself creates a need for dishonesty, or, at the very least secrecy, keeping some cards up your sleeve, and of course subsequently reneging on promises. That’s reality. Expecting complete openness and honesty from a politician is naive and pointless, it’s no different to expecting any human to be perfect. Expecting anyone to represent you exactly, 100% is absurd. Do you even agree with everything your best friend believes in/says/does? No. Of course not. This is unrealistic.
In fact the very best you can hope for from anyone in a position of power is that they don’t make anything worse than it already is. I’m totally serious here. If you get inertia for their entire period in office, you’re lucky. For every “leader”, at any level, anywhere on the planet, who retires having improved things, there is another who fucked everything up. If those who made a difference, in a positive way, were even slightly greater in number than those who caused harm, we’d see a slow but sure, and most importantly permanent improvement in how the world was run overall, and I’m just not seeing it, are you?
But what we do have, no matter what, are different mindsets that are, loosely, connected to these damn parties we have to deal with. We have the conservative mindset which at its most basic level, wants things to stay as they are (or indeed, in extremis, go backwards), and we have the progressive mindset which seeks (in theory) change leading to improvement.
You will never do away with these different mindsets. That is how people are. There may be minor changes that occur due to education, but most of this is personality and attitude and there have been studies that show real neurological differences. Conservative minds tend to be more fearful, while progressive minds tend to be more optimistic. People simply see the world in different ways. They always have, and they always will.
But it should work out, as a balance. If you have 5 conservative minds and 5 progressive ones, and they discuss everything rationally, and try to come to come to an agreement that suits everyone as best they can, it can work out far better than if only one “type” held the balance of power, and were to make all the decisions.
Of course this assumes that everyone concerned has the motivation of desiring the best outcome possible for everyone. And….they don’t.
So what we get instead is this crazy system whereby all people who are nominally conservative or whatever, get shepherded into a named party, and so on, with as few or as many parties overall as the location can withstand. The parties then fight one another. As if the only thing that mattered was their success at obtaining the balance of power.
That isn’t what should matter. But that’s what we get. I HATE THIS.
All the work done, all the time spent, all the resources, get wasted, while the people that are supposed to be represented have to simply stand and watch yet another batch of men in suits forget what they were elected for.
But what is even worse than that? The unelected men in suits with as much or greater power. The bankers, CEOs, media moguls, oil barons, etc, who use money to get things run to suit them – to make more money.
Really, who is in control?
I have no time for these ultra rich powermongers. None. This is not because I object to anyone being rich. I believe J.K. Rowling is worth every damn penny she has. So let’s get that quite straight. I’m OK with Bill Gates wealth. I don’t even mind Kanye West being rich, despite the fact I don’t like his music, and I suspect he’s not actually a very nice person. These people have become wealthy in legitimate ways, they’ll do.
I don’t even have a problem with people being born into great wealth if they are decent folk, with a philanthropic bent. It can happen.
What I do object to are those who became wealthy by screwing over other people AND who then use that money to try to screw over more people. In other words, if you are idle rich and also unethical, I give you no wiggle room at all. It’s the ethics that count, every time.
In fact what I see with these people is that they are needlessly spiteful. They are so rich they can afford to be tolerant. Please read that twice. They can afford to avoid all the people they don’t like, without causing them any harm. They don’t even need to see the homeless, for example. They can pretend they don’t exist. Or they could solve the problem. They could make homelessness vanish, and they wouldn’t even miss the money. Instead they do everything they possibly can to make the lives of these people harder.
They are nasty, cruel, offensive individuals, and worse as a group.
And you’d better believe they are running the show. This is real politics. “How things are run”. And you don’t get a vote.
This is not a conspiracy. It’s not secret. It’s done in plain sight. We allow it, we even encourage it. All those silly fears about conspiracies pale into insignificance in the face of this.
How do they manage to keep it up?
Divide and conquer. Easy.
They tell us that the problem is us. The little people. They pick us off. Name a group, make them a scapegoat, get all attention diverted there. Maybe it’s immigrants, or gays, or welfare moms, or whatever. They tell us these people are the reason we aren’t getting our fair share. And we fall for this lie every damn time. Just how fucking stupid are we?
Those in power, elected or otherwise, get to decide how things are run. We the minions get the fallout. And we pay for the privilege. This is why I hate politics.
I especially hate political discussion with people who have accepted this situation, and chosen to go along with it, by taking a “side” and blaming everyone on the other side, and by blaming the scapegoats. I don’t have the patience to repeat the gist of this post every time the topic comes up. I am sick of being called names by both “sides” (the irony of this is also lost on them). I am fed up with the hypocrisy, the ignorance, and the blaming of the victim. I refuse to give my time and energy to the idea that harming some other poor bugger by discriminating against him, is going to make everything great for everyone else.
Above all I’m done with lies. Obvious, blatant, recorded lies that are just ignored like they never happened. How dare you stand in front of a TV camera and talk bollocks. Respect? Not going to happen.
I do care about how things are run. But when I point out that it’s wrong (and bloody stupid) to enact a “bathroom law” and what I get in return is that I’m a “libtard” – I’m done. Conversation is over. That is no longer a political discussion, it’s a playground argument and I’m not interested.
Thankfully online I can just ignore things. And I do. I do that magical “scroll on” thing. Out in the real world it’s much harder. Strong opinions get spat at you, and it’s awfully hard to find a place of sanity after that. I refuse to engage, but the other options are not ideal. I hate all of this. I cannot abide that everywhere I look, regular people, working class people are placing the blame for everything on other regular, working class people, and meanwhile the greedy few are laughing at how they got out of it yet again.
The only solution I can offer is education, but so many people refuse to be educated. They much prefer to reinforce their existing beliefs.
Therefore, I shall say again, I hate politics, for all the above reasons. But I care, very very much.