Friday, November 7, 2014

Post-Pre-Post Election Wrap-up 2014

It would be hard to retain my blogging license if I didn’t weigh in on the recent election in some fashion. But first, I’m going to ask you to cast your thoughts back … way back … to 2012. After Obama’s re-election, all the usual pundits took to the air waves (and Internet waves) to pass judgment on the defeated Republican party. The party was in shambles, they said, and was doomed to wander the desert for generations, since they clearly failed to embrace the new national demographics.

This week, the pundit-sphere is again hearkening to the sound of defeat, and near-permanent exile from political control. Only this time, it’s the Democrats who are condemned to wander in the wilderness.

The point is, neither party, and no 3rd party, is ever going to have a lock on power. Because really, there’s only ever one single question on the ballot: Am I satisfied?

That’s right. The only thing going through the mind of John Q. Voter or Jane Q. Voter when he or she enters that voting booth is “Can things be better?” It’s a simple yes-or-no question. There’s no nuance. No issues. No policies or ideologies.

All that comes during the campaign … the issues and policies and promises. And they’re really only intended to serve one purpose … to make you, the voter, feel happy or unhappy. Campaigns are built entirely on two kinds of messages (the insider term for commercials interrupting your favorite shows.) Message 1 is “So-and-so sucks! Just look at all the terrible things he/she/it has done!”

Message 2 is “So-and-so will bring you happiness!”

And they just keep bombarding you with these messages, relentlessly, until by election day, when John or Jane Q. walks into that booth, the only thoughts they’re capable of are “Things are bad. We need change,” or “Things are good. Let’s keep going.”

That said, I’ll be happy to accept huge consulting fees for campaign advice and guidance.

1 comment:

Peter Davis said...

Elizabeth Warren says essentially the same thing, but more verbosely:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/elizabeth-warren-its-time-to-work-on-americas-agenda/2014/11/07/984da7b6-669c-11e4-9fdc-d43b053ecb4d_story.html