Archive for January 2007

Politics and the New Media

January 30, 2007

How about a positive look into the future of politics in America?  I wrote in my first post that many of us are disenfranchised and feel helpless to change the way things are run in Washington, so how are things ever going to change?

We aren’t there yet, but the “new media”, including a tiny bit by blogs like this, will be an ever increasing factor in the way we elect people in this country.  Here is a link that includes some startling numbers that predict $1 billion will be spent on the presidential campaign over the next two years.  I’m not a proponent of campaign finance reform, but these type of numbers essentially eliminate everyone except those with money, power and influence in either the Democrat or Republican party.  Kind of lays to rest the whole notion of a government “for the people and by the people” doesn’t it?

So lets look at some of the ways technology and the “new media” will change this.

  • DVRs and other alternative methods of watching television shows mean less people will be watching these expensive political adds.  I know I managed to skip past most of them this past October and November.  
  • Blogs are bringing more information and opinions to the masses.  The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Associated Press, and Reuters won’t have so much control over the political information I read.  If there is a story in say…Reno Nevada regarding Harry Reid for example I don’t have to rely on the New York Times to report it.  Chances are I will be able to find the story from a local newspaper online, that some blogger linked to.
  • The Internet in general makes it easier to find errors in stories and alternate points of views.  Bloggers have exposed over and over photoshopped media stories, inaccurate news reports, and lies in political campaigns.  You can’t just say something and get away with it anymore…speaking of which…
  • The Internet is allowing video and audio to find its way to the masses much easier than before.  You don’t have to take your tape to the news outlet and hope it get run on the nightly news.  Nope, you just go online and download it for the world to see.  Macaca anyone?

I’m just scratching the surface with these examples and the modes of communication just keep changing every day.  It is hard to keep up with it all.  Just think what the political landscape will be like when more and more people start catching on to how the new media operates and what it is all about.  I read a recent study that showed only about 27% percent of Americans read blogs.  That will change, and so will politics.

The Truth Squad

January 30, 2007

Well, I thought I’d start this blog off with a general post explaining what this blog is all about and why we decided to start it.  First off, this is a joint blog written by myself (Chris), and my friend Dave.  Dave and I don’t always agree on every political issue, but we do agree that there are major problems facing our country and our current political landscape is keeping us from solving these problems. 

Politics in America has become a game and we…the citizens of the country are the pawns.  We are manipulated constantly by political rhetoric that makes us take certain actions, vote certain ways, or just become disenfranchised and do nothing.  I’d gotten so frustrated over the last couple of years that I was slipping into the disenfranchised category, and that scared me.  Over the years I talked to people, and witnessed others that just gave up.  They didn’t care about what happened in Washington, because there was nothing they could do, and voting was a pointless exercise that wouldn’t change a thing.  I’d always tell people it was our patriotic duty as citizens of this great country, to vote and voice our opinions and not take for granted the republic that millions of brave men and women fought to preserve.  Well, those feelings started to slip away.

I did a lot of political soul searching, and the first thing that popped in my mind was all of these other people that felt so disenfranchised, and had given up.  I was finally really able to identify with them and I started looking at the big picture.  Put away all of the different political issues, rhetoric, and gamesmanship…what are you left with?  A bunch of career politicians that only care about power, keeping the power, and money.  Oh yeah, and a few hundred million Americans that are not being represented like they should be.  You may ask “what do you mean that we aren’t being represented like we should be?”.  Well, that is one of the big topics that we’ll be discussing in this blog.

Here are a couple examples…one from each “side of the aisle”, just to whet your appetite.

  • The Republicans are in control of the House, Senate, and the White House and what is one of their top priorities in 2005?  The use of steroids in baseball.  Thanks a lot, I’m sleeping much better now that I heard Sammy Sosa struggle with his English in front of this committee.
  • The Democrats win control of Congress by telling voters that we need to get out of Iraq and they are the ones to do it.  Well, you have the power so go defund the war!  Nothing.  I hear the war protesters calling the Dems out, so I know they are ticked.

In a nutshell there are a lot of us that feel the same way.  We come from all walks of life and we have innumerable views on all kinds of political topics, yet I think most of us agree that politics in Washington at the federal level have been taken out of the hands of the people and put into the hands of the career politicians.  That is what upsets me and scares me and that is why I wanted to start this blog.