For reasons that do not matter, almost two years ago I decided to become a cord cutter. Meaning I no longer have cable TV. And with the exception of some sports, all of my boob tube watching is compliments of Netflix.
Aside from saving money and not missing TV, one unanticipated benefit has been disconnecting from cable news and the hysterical bombardment of subtle and oftentimes not so subtle partisan political white noise. And once I started ignoring (mostly) similar said political white noise on my facebook stream, I was really home-free.
- Free from attempts at brainwashing, and manipulation.
- Free from subjective opinions based on selective truths, and bias that is potentially rooted as much in personal history and issues, as “objective” intellectually formulated conclusions.
- Free to watch my own personal bias’ and positions, I had become maybe a little too comfortable with, fall away.
In other words I have moved closer to a neutral position. The exact position that our justice system is predicated on when, in its ideal form, it finds twelve completely unbiased jurors, without preconceived notions, prejudices, and so on, to pass judgment on innocence or guilt.
I am not saying that there aren’t a lot of good and far more intelligent people than me out there… but sifting through the minefield of spin, rhetoric, and talking points has become tiring and unproductive. And to my learned friends, you can have a mensa IQ and still be emotionally skewed… especially when it comes to topics like politics.
So I will attempt to get as close to a pure state as possible for the next presidential election. How? By ignoring 98% of the babble. I will pay attention to the primaries but not get emotionally invested in any candidate. Why? Because politicians lie. More than usual during primaries. In primaries, candidates generally run to the their base with the knowledge that if they win the primary they will have to move or “pivot”, as the talking heads like to say, to the middle.
So no point in getting all caught up in it or even playing the “gotcha” or he lied game, cause just about all of the winnable candidates do it. What about authentic candidates? The ones committed to their values? They know they can’t win and likely have some other agenda. Perhaps angling to be a VP candidate. Whatever, I am not biting anymore.
I won’t watch hyper partisan “news” shows or softball interviews. There is little point in watching Sean Hannity interview a republican candidate or Rachel Maddow interview a democrat. I am not member of either choir so no need to be preached to by these cheerleaders.
Here is what I will do:
- I will watch all debates.
- I will fact check claims made in the debates.
- I will measure fact checked claims against preexisting records of the candidates and weigh them against the issues I think are most important.
I will watch and or read substantive interviews and editorial content that take place between and or are about debates, and or are close to the finish line. I will watch and evaluate based on the merits. If anything of consequence comes from such interviews I will not allow it to move my needle until I fact check its contents as well.
If there is one thing today’s rush to get the story out media has taught me is that today’s “facts” can wind up as tomorrow’s retraction. So slow your roll playa, and take everything in with a grain of salt. My loyalty is to the truth, what I think is best for the country, and myself. IT IS NOT TO A DONKEY OR AN ELEPHANT!
Hence, if the candidate that comes out best in my process is an independent, or libertarian, I will vote for him or her. If it is republican or democrat, I will vote for he of she. This process will guide me and I will trust it to lead me to as close as an objective verdict as I am capable of rendering.