By definition, the leaders of all the major political entities, whether activist leaders or elected officials, are all operating under the same massive conflict of interest. Their positions are secured only by the perpetuation of the very problems they have pledged to solve. Each side must sow divisiveness and hate, because that's what keeps the volunteers, donations, and votes flowing. They must choose policies which maximize short term expediency and long term chaos because that's what gives them the political power and covering obfuscation to pursue their private agendas (if they have any) and hide their hypocrisy.
This state of affairs is nothing new.
However, there was a time in this country when "journalists" could be counted upon to show up at least the most egregious abuses of power and the most blatant hypocrisies. Scandal was a rarity to be feared. But with all of the major news providers now controlled by entertainment media, the phrase "free press" has gone from meaning "independent" to "cheap". They do nothing more than pass along verbatim the most vitriolic rhetoric from the "sides" they themselves have delineated. As entertainers, it is in their financial interest to foment maximum discord as well. Scandal, even your own, is now an opportunity to be relished.
Thus we have a political situation in which all of the participants have a vested interest in creating, rather than solving, problems. As voters, there is very little we can do because we lack ready access to relevant information and rarely are given viable choices at the polls. Where once we could at least fall back on voting for the ideologies or philosophies of a party, now there is only the rhetoric of the week as each party swaps positions freely and panders to the same pool of special interests. I personally have not been permitted to cast my vote in a presidential primary in ten years: the parties always pare down the ballot to a single choice each long before my state of residence gets to vote.
July 10, 2003
For a while now I have been hoping that a viable third (or fourth) political party would present a solution. But as the press sinks deeper into infotainment dumbassity, their pandering to the "stars" of the political stage have made hopes for any serious coverage of "independents" bleak. My new hope is that network television as we know it is nearing its end. With the advent of inexpensive means of content distribution, it is now possible for truly independent news distribution to occur without the need for massive corporate financing. As with most media changes, I believe that entertainment will lead the way, with subscription TV shows arising to signal the death of corporate media and the emergence truly free voices. But that's a rant for another time.
This rant solely reflects the opinion of the author, probably while he was half asleep, drunk, or otherwise incapacitated. It does not necessarily reflect the opinion of his employer, his friends, or possibly the author in a more conscious state. Hate mail will be prosecuted. Constructive criticism may be posted or ignored. Have a nice day.