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Thread: The number one enemy of freedom is.....

  1. #1

    Default The number one enemy of freedom is.....

    It is not any law. It is not any political belief. It is not the action of any politician.

    The number one enemy of freedom in the US is the sheer inactivity of the citizenship.

    Most people in my country do not tend to go out into their communities and gain real-world experience that will create more educated political beliefs. They get most of their information from either CNN or Fox News, and choose who to vote for (if they even vote at all!) based solely on the information (or misinformation) they get from the mass media.

    And then when a new bill gets added to the polls, the results are the same. People vote when the wording sounds good or bad to their ears when it comes from their news outlet of choice.

    I don't know what is worse - people not voting at all, or people voting for their candidate or bill of choice without having a decent grasp of the implications of that vote.

    Most people in my country do not want to go out and get real-world experiences. They would rather work their jobs (which too many of them tend to hate), go home and get all of their misinformation handed to them on a silver platter. There is too little motivation in the American citizenship these days. Most people know that there is a lot in the political system these days that is very wrong, but not enough people are doing anything about it. I think a lot of that has to do with a general sense of hopelessness ("things are too far damaged for us to do anything about it, it's completely out of our hands," etc).

    People in the States still do have the potential to take the power back if they really wanted to. All that is missing is the motivation and the hope. Without the motivation and the hope, though, not much can be done, sad to say.

    And I will end this post here. I hope I offended nobody with my political views.

  2. #2

    Default

    I'm going to agree with you there. Thats actually the reason that we have the electoral college here, because the founding fathers didn't want to put too much power into the hands of the uneducated masses. This also reminded me of a video:

    YouTube - Mainstream Media Commercial

  3. #3

    Default

    While I agree that this represents a large percentage of the population, it is far from a universal truth. I would also posit that this type of attitude is far from uniquely American, as laziness is a human condition that has existed much longer than the relative blink of an eye that the United States has been in existence.

    Also I think the mainstream media has its place, but like any tool it must be used properly. The internet age has brought about the ability to see the world from others' perspective like we have never seen before. As part of my daily routine I usually read news and commentary from many different news outlets, both foreign and domestic. For these tools to be used properly, one must take in many sources and try to distill the information from the spin.

    I was born in raised in the rural south, and at a glance could be easily stereotyped as another "lazy uneducated American", but such underestimation and over generalization can get you in trouble :P

    As to the obvious lack of motivation in the modern western world, it is not a new concept: panem et circenses...

  4. #4

    Default

    Chasing confirmation bias, like watching Fox 'news' or CNN, is simply doing yourself a disservice as a person.
    The whole point of being human is to think, and to be dissatisfied with having conflicting opinions or irrational beliefs, as well as having the desire to be right.
    People who simply get their information from bias places are not being persons, and shouldn't be voting!

    Luckily in the UK, we still have news on TV, it's just the newspapers that are bad.

    More regulation on the news!

  5. #5

    Default

    Well, I normally stay out of threads like this, but I guess I'll be honest on this one. I pretty much fit into the category of people that you mentioned. I don't really get into politics at all...I find out some basic/general information and vote based on what makes the most sense to me.

    And I'll be honest in saying that it's a mix of selfishness and laziness...and maybe a bit of apathy. I think the reason is that overall I'm happy and content with life, even though I also work hard and have problems just like anyone else. But life has never gotten so bad for me that I feel like I want anything to drastically change. Yes, I know there's corruption in politics and that there are a lot of injustices in the US...but I tend to take an ostrich-syndrome approach because I'm always focused on what's going on in my own individual life.


    So maybe the word "complacent" would be a good description of me...I don't see anything majorly wrong in my own life, so I'm not motivated to do anything to change it. It's not something I'm proud of...but at the same time it's not something that bothers me enough to change things for me. Just being honest.

  6. #6
    LilLillyKitten

    Default



    Quote Originally Posted by kaworuchan View Post
    The number one enemy of freedom in the US is the sheer inactivity of the citizenship.
    +1

  7. #7

    Default



    Quote Originally Posted by kaworuchan View Post
    It is not any law. It is not any political belief. It is not the action of any politician.

    The number one enemy of freedom in the US is the sheer inactivity of the citizenship.

    Most people in my country do not tend to go out into their communities and gain real-world experience that will create more educated political beliefs. They get most of their information from either CNN or Fox News, and choose who to vote for (if they even vote at all!) based solely on the information (or misinformation) they get from the mass media.

    And then when a new bill gets added to the polls, the results are the same. People vote when the wording sounds good or bad to their ears when it comes from their news outlet of choice.

    I don't know what is worse - people not voting at all, or people voting for their candidate or bill of choice without having a decent grasp of the implications of that vote.

    Most people in my country do not want to go out and get real-world experiences. They would rather work their jobs (which too many of them tend to hate), go home and get all of their misinformation handed to them on a silver platter. There is too little motivation in the American citizenship these days. Most people know that there is a lot in the political system these days that is very wrong, but not enough people are doing anything about it. I think a lot of that has to do with a general sense of hopelessness ("things are too far damaged for us to do anything about it, it's completely out of our hands," etc).

    People in the States still do have the potential to take the power back if they really wanted to. All that is missing is the motivation and the hope. Without the motivation and the hope, though, not much can be done, sad to say.

    And I will end this post here. I hope I offended nobody with my political views.
    Honestly i think you're generalizing a bit. It's easy to view other people as mindless drones, followers, etc. of some mass publicized ideal; you and few others being capable of independent thought and action. And while there is some truth in the existence of the population you describe, I think it is overstated (not just in your post, but by many people that tend to say the same sort of things).

    That said, i agree that there is definitely a problem with the the dissemination of information from a few large corporations, since it becomes difficult to expect any sort of objective or complete reporting on many issues, equal coverage of candidates (e.g. NBC and Kucinich), or intelligent discourse about complicated topics.

    And it is true that those who don't buy into mass media may become jaded and withdraw from the system, rather than attempting to change it. Personally i don't think the people could take the power back, even if we wanted to. Basically the only (legal) tools left us are our dollars and our votes - both of which usually serve to perpetuate that which we wish to change. There are still some good people left in Congress (who they are varies depending on who you talk to... i would pick Kucinich, Franken, Grayson to start) that try to act as representatives of the people and not their campaign funders or corporate interests. However they are often ridiculed in public discourse, especially people like Kucinich and Nader.

    I'll also disagree with you about "hope." In my view when you hope for something, you're basically admitting that it's beyond your control. For example, "I hope it doesn't rain tomorrow." But be careful about saying things like "I hope our political system changes for the better," when you could be saying "What can I do/How can we make our political system better?"

  8. #8

    Default



    Quote Originally Posted by krebstar View Post
    I'll also disagree with you about "hope." In my view when you hope for something, you're basically admitting that it's beyond your control. For example, "I hope it doesn't rain tomorrow." But be careful about saying things like "I hope our political system changes for the better," when you could be saying "What can I do/How can we make our political system better?"
    That's why I said "motivation and hope". Motivation to take action (which usually leads to actually taking action) without hope that the end result will be worth the effort is pretty much doomed to fail. Just like hope without motivation to do anything, which is what you are talking about. That's where I am coming from with that statement.

  9. #9

    Default

    Politically speaking, the word "hope" has been drained of a whole lot of meaning in the past couple years....

    On the original topic I would say that you are partially right, but you are overlooking a few things; among them, the detachment many feel from the process. People vote for a politician they think will do some good, he fails to do anything, so they vote for the other guy, rinse, repeat. Whenever somebody new comes along with ideas that might actually change something, they get laughed off the stage. Eventually people get tired of the system and stop paying attention, because they truly believe (based on this experience) that there is nothing they can do.

  10. #10

    Default



    Quote Originally Posted by babypup View Post
    Politically speaking, the word "hope" has been drained of a whole lot of meaning in the past couple years....

    On the original topic I would say that you are partially right, but you are overlooking a few things; among them, the detachment many feel from the process. People vote for a politician they think will do some good, he fails to do anything, so they vote for the other guy, rinse, repeat. Whenever somebody new comes along with ideas that might actually change something, they get laughed off the stage. Eventually people get tired of the system and stop paying attention, because they truly believe (based on this experience) that there is nothing they can do.
    Of course, you are right.

    Many people have become too cynical about the American political system. And given its past track record, I can't say I really blame them for feeling that way. But that cynicism is not going to get people anywhere they want to be.

    As far as the people who say I have overgeneralized the American public - you're right, of course. I never said that my opinions were perfect, or that I was all that great at getting my opinions across in words, after all. Heh.

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