Thursday, October 30, 2008

So apparently there’s an election coming up?

I have avoided commenting on the campaign because while I participate in participatory democracy, I’m not crazy about politics.

If political debate really created a marketplace for ideas and creative solutions for some of the challenges we face, then perhaps I might join in.

But like any kind of marketing, there’s no time for nuance or deeper understanding so the conversation inevitably turns into a shouting match. And if you listen to the people doing the shouting it becomes clear that they’re not nearly as informed as they think they are.

Further, my experience suggests that the certainty of someone’s argument is usually inversely related to the accuracy of that argument. And if that’s a maxim that you think you might believe in, then the shouters are the last people that we should be listening to.

But I accept that you can’t run a campaign and win without shouting. That’s probably just a function of the scale of an election in a country this big. But the challenges we face are so complex…I just hope that whoever wins surrounds himself with smart, smart people.

Maybe when all of the shouting is done they can sit down in a quiet room and figure out just what the eff we’re going to do with this mess.

All I know is that I’m not smart enough to do it. And neither is Sarah Palin.

(Oh c’mon…that was pretty mild. And I would feel like total milquetoast if I didn’t at least allude to who I’m voting for. Besides, she’s been using an anti-intellectual appeal in her speeches and I think that we need more intellectualism, not less.)

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