Fran, today expounds on something I”ve touched on repeatedly, and does a fair job at breaking it down… almost as an afterthought:

 Politics is inextricably intertwined with human motivation: the fundamental sources of our desires and impetuses to act. I have become convinced that we understand our motivations, and the strengths of them, too poorly to make acceptable overall sense of our political conduct.

The rest of the article goes on from there, in a slightly differnt direction from teh trust of this post….  but this part I’ve quoted,  is really the heart of what I’ve been suggesting when I said that politics is the reflection of the deepest desires, and our deepest rooted values and a means to and end of getting closer to achievement of those desires.

The nature of politics tends to burn away that which we value less… as we strive within the system to get to our goals. The measurement of our values comes in the political compromise process… what are we willing to give up, in order to get something else?

 Such as ‘supporting the troops’, for example, but sticking a knife in their backs for some other advanatge, such as political  and monetary power.

Or raising the minimum wage, except for those people who work for companies whose shares are owned by the Pelosi family… and so on.

I’m by no means suggesting that this is a reason to remove one’s self from the process. But it does suggest we need to pay closer attantion to the signs of what motivates some candidates. When viewed in that light, the current crop of Presidential candidates, and indeed for most offices, on both sides of the isle, look less than impressive, being far too willing to give up their suppsoedly bedrock values’.

 Understand the implications here, in light of the post of the other day,where I responded to Billy… where Billy suggests that what we’re seeing is purely emotional, and without reason. I concur. But why? Because as Fran says;

…we understand our motivations, and the strengths of them, too poorly to make acceptable overall sense of our political conduct.

Don’t misunderstand me; They’re troublesome, but I don’t call emotions within the political process a bad thing. I’ve been known to get right angry and tiimes in these spaces, giddy at others.  Even those who rebel at the political process, tend to get emotional. Some have made reputations byallowing their emotions to come forward. It’s part of the human condition; clinical emotional detachment from our greatest desires and our darkest fears simply isn’t possible. .

 But we need to consider, particularly when policy questions arise, particularly by means of political movements… If Politics is so largely driven by our emotions, how can it be expected to be fully reasonable?

An excellent case in point is the ‘global warming’ scare. If nothing else, it’s an emotional appeal based on our worst fears.  Which, in turn, is why the argument it is so immune to mere facts.


The rule of thumb, apparently:

If a political appeal starts in the realm of the emotional, do not expect it to make much sense.

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