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    •  My 80-year-old father is also an (68+ / 0-)

      intelligent man with a Master's Degree in Electrical Engineering. He was a test pilot before he retired.

      My father digests every thing he sees on Fox News hook, line and sinker.  It's beyond comprehension and you can't reason with him. He flies off into a rage when you try to point out anything that does not agree that belief system. It's not even worth trying any more.

      For me, Mitt reminds me of Jeff Bridges in Starman. He's like an alien that hasn't read the entire manual. You know, he's going, "Nice to be in a place where the trees are the right size." -- Robin Williams on Letterman 26 Apr 2012

      by hungrycoyote on Tue Jun 05, 2012 at 05:46:14 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Stories like this make me wonder (36+ / 0-)

        gosh, could this happen to me as I get older?

        Another example is my stepmother - she was a teacher and a serious Democrat for decades in the blue northeast, where strong unions ensured her a great salary and a very generous retirement package. She now lives in a red southern state that forbids collective bargaining by teacher unions (making them essentially so weak as to be nonexistent), and works part time training education students during their student teaching. She KNOWS how crappy the wages and benefits are, and why, but now she has gone full Republican. Is she not making the connection? Or does she think that other education professionals somehow don't deserve the opportunities she had? I can never get a straight answer.

        •  The denial (33+ / 0-)

          inherent in all these otherwise-intelligent people is astonishing. But that's exactly what it is. Denial. Add that to 30 years of propaganda spewing from every major news outlet in this country, and you've got a real mess.

          This house is dividing, and it will not stand if some of these people do not wake the fuck up pretty soon.

          I am disgusted beyond belief tonight at the apparent "victory" of another bought-by-the-one-percent election. I wish, with every fiber in my being, that we could find a way to shut down the propagandists who have spent a good generation or two now brainwashing my brothers and sisters to the point where they believe a bunch of bullshit that makes no coherent sense, often to the point of:

          you can't reason with (him). (He) flies off into a rage when you try to point out anything that does not agree with that belief system.
          I know more than a few people like this, too. It takes "La la la, I'm not listening..." to a whole new level, and it is taking on some weird dynamics lately. One is my brother. I don't know him anymore. I really, truly do not. It's some kind of sick, induced, rage-filled psychosis of denial.  


          It is time to #Occupy Media.

          by lunachickie on Tue Jun 05, 2012 at 08:09:13 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  We can. (7+ / 0-)
            I wish, with every fiber in my being, that we could find a way to shut down the propagandists who have spent a good generation or two now brainwashing my brothers and sisters to the point where they believe a bunch of bullshit that makes no coherent sense...
            ...and there is.

            But you can't shut down the propagandists.  It's like whack-a-mole, and they're really not that important anyway.

            The only possible solution I see is to either shut down the money that feeds them, or match it.  And frankly, I doubt that matching it is any more than a pipe-dream - because, for the kind of people who have that much money, there isn't much more in supporting progressive causes.  The 1% who support Republicans get immediate, measurable, and very real financial rewards for doing so; across almost every industry.

            We need to shut down the money.  Nothing will change until we do that one thing.

            And Citizens United will not be overturned.

            Interesting problem, isn't it?

            It ain't called paranoia - when they're really out to get you. 6 points.

            by Jaime Frontero on Tue Jun 05, 2012 at 09:07:24 PM PDT

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            •  What I would give for (8+ / 0-)

              public financing of elections. I hate to sound so cynical, but Citizens United may just prove the be the nail in our democracy's coffin. But for now money is speech, and those with the cash have a much bigger voice. And the other side is working very hard to crush any sort of actual regular-person organization like unions that could give us a collective voice. Because in their minds, there is no collective anymore - there's just the job of figuring out how they can take more from our individual pocketbooks by reducing our wages, cutting our jobs, killing our pensions, making us pay more out-of-pocket for medical care, etc. etc. etc.

            •  We have to try (10+ / 0-)
              either shut down the money that feeds them, or match it
              The 1% who support Republicans get immediate, measurable, and very real financial rewards for doing so; across almost every industry.
              Because they have bought our government. The propaganda IS important--it helps those who have essentially bought our sovereignty to have the shield of "Well? People support us, we must be doing SOMETHING right".

              That support is based on the propaganda. Enough people believe it because it's been fed to them in a steady, relentlessly-droning, mind-numbing fashion nonstop for over thirty years. The checks and balances of national communication were stripped by the Government they finished purchasing the day Citizens United was "decided". And six corporations control all the information, and they can essentially now lie with impunity, provided they can find enough believable marquee names to spew it on-air (and not enough people understand that for what it is, either. )

              In short, enough of America still believes that because it's on TV, it must be--has to be--true.

              You can't possibly believe the propaganda factor isn't that important. It is critical--that is the only way these bastards can divide and conquer over three hundred and fifty million people at the same time. They monopolized the airwaves and they use the language to manipulate the people who watch and listen, into believing a bunch of lies.


              I really used to wonder how ordinary, good Germans watched the takeover from the sidelines, or didn't leave.  And now I know.
              So do I. And feeding the public mass doses of bullshit and lies and making them believable--amid a barrage of information overload (as someone else noted upthread) is necessary to garner divisions and keep the people busy bickering among themselves, while the real damage is done in the halls of Congress and state and municipal governments all over this country, right now.

              These people are dismantling our Constitution and because of all this propaganda, they're doing it with the full support of half the people in this country.

              You and I and everyone else has to believe in the idea that those of us with even two sticks' worth of critical thinking skills to rub together that  we have to try and think of a way to shut down the propaganda that's helping that happen.

              Besides, there's not enough money for us to amass--the greedy bastards have the lion's share of it already.

              It is time to #Occupy Media.

              by lunachickie on Tue Jun 05, 2012 at 09:52:04 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  not even so much lying anymore (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                lunachickie, Onomastic

                just obscuring anything of any importance with an overabundance of incredibly stupid "infotainment" and celebrity worship. I've been forced to watch NBC and ABC during their morning shows for work, and for the hours upon hours of "early news", there are maybe 10 minutes of anything worthwhile, and the rest is fluffy, glittery sad and I'm not sure if it is deliberate through some conspiracy, but the dumbing down of America has been spectacularly successful.....

              •  Fairness Doctrine (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                PsychoSavannah, lunachickie, marina

                regulate them
                worked before


                It is the highest impertinence ... in kings and ministers, to pretend to watch over the economy of private people, ... They are themselves always, and without any exception, the greatest spendthrifts in the society. - Adam Smith

                by treesrock on Wed Jun 06, 2012 at 05:19:12 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Exactly (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  mkor7, marina

                  and every time someone mentions it, it gets slapped down as impossible because of "the changing nature of communications". And that's just bullshit. It doesn't matter what it's called or if what it used to be would work now. What matters is that there is no more Fairness Doctrine right now.

                  Regulation--it's what's for Democracy. You can't have one without the other, because there will always be human beings who are sociopathic greedheads--who would sell the rest of us out in a New York minute, were there no regulation.

                  One by one, regulations have gone away. And look at the train wreck that remains. FOX. Rush. Fucking liars, sophists and manipulators, the lot of them. Yet a lot of people think they're telling the truth when they are demonstrably lying.

                  Because of that, half the people in America have learned to hate their own government. Yes, that's right, I said learned.

                  How does that happen, again? Did you say "no regulation"???

                  you can't reason with (him). (He) flies off into a rage when you try to point out anything that does not agree with that belief system.
                  "But....but....they can't say it if it's not true! They wouldn't let it on the air"

                  They who? The six guys who own The Air?

                  Who or what do you control for the betterment of democracy as a whole? You start by regulating the ones who do not give a damn for humanity, that they would help help dismantle a democracy by using sophistry and manipulation of our own native language.

                  It is time to #Occupy Media.

                  by lunachickie on Wed Jun 06, 2012 at 06:03:18 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  I was hoping the Fairness Doctrine (0+ / 0-)

                    would be the first thing a new President Obama would enact, because without it every good thing that Democrats tried to do would be torn apart by lies and spin.

                    But the immediate backlash was "Free speech!" as if our democracy wasn't an outweighing factor, and as if the people aren't owed, aren't deserving of the whole truth.

                    Instead we are treated as fungible units, cheap labor and implements of war, programmed from birth to be not all we can be, but only what they plan for us to be.

                    The things that make life worth living, especially peace of mind, are not for us, but only for the privileged few.

          •  Americans are naive. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

              A lot of Americans are naive. We trust our government and believe that they only have our best interests in mind. The Vietnam war was the exception. There were huge united protests against the war, because the draft affected almost everyone.
                We believe we live in a true democracy, unlike the "other places" This makes us naive, complacent and easily manipulated. People in the "other places" are aware of the corruption and manipulation, are cynical but realistic. I'm afraid that it will take a huge crisis to make people finally pay attention.

            All that is necessary to have evil triumph is to have good men do nothing!

            by pipercity on Wed Jun 06, 2012 at 06:38:27 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  Can someone explain to me (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            OhioNatureMom, marina, Leap Year

            just what kind of "thuggery" Wisconsinites have suffered at the hands of teachers' unions?

            Why are so many Wisconsin voters convinced that schoolteachers are "thugs" but the Koch brothers are not?

        •  It may be a social thing, that she's (5+ / 0-)

          conforming with those around her. Some people would rather fit in than be right about things.

          "The object of persecution is persecution. The object of torture is torture. The object of power is power. Now do you begin to understand me?" ~Orwell, "1984"

          by Lily O Lady on Tue Jun 05, 2012 at 09:03:36 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  She is definitely surrounded by (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            golf-community retiree types, but the curious thing is that so many of them are ALSO transplants from more liberal climes. Overall it's way more homogenous though, only older white people behind those neighborhood gates.

            •  I'm old (60) and white, but could never see (6+ / 0-)

              myself agreeing with those people. I'd probably end up avoiding any long conversations.

              "The object of persecution is persecution. The object of torture is torture. The object of power is power. Now do you begin to understand me?" ~Orwell, "1984"

              by Lily O Lady on Tue Jun 05, 2012 at 10:03:01 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  You would probably (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:

                choose not to live where they do. ;-)

                •  Actually I do live in a very (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  semiot, OhioNatureMom

                  red area. I was amazed, during the 2008 election to discover how many Democrats/progressives there were in the area. We all live in stealth mode usually, although we know the others are out there now.

                  As in the national dialogue, the Republicans dominate the discourse. Just yesterday I saw a letter to the editor of the big city paper complaining that Paul Krugman is "worse than a leftist." This is how they suppress other voices. It was a similar letter several years back that cause the paper to drop Molly Ivans' column a couple of years before she died.

                  And beyond Republicans, we have a healthy cohort of Tea Partiers who fly the Gadsden flag. Our Republican US Representative is being primaried from the right by a Tea Partier. Our state representative has introduced legislation that has been decried here on DKos.

                  I used to try to talk sense to these people. It does no good, because many TV screens in public as well as in private homes are tuned to Roger Ailes' very effective propaganda organ, FOX "news" or (just as bad) CNN. Their emotions have been engaged and their cerebral cortex held hostage by fear and hate.

                  They can't convince me to "go crazy" and I can't convince them to go sane. We ended up in this area because my husband was in the military and we owned a house here. I'd like to move to a blue state, but we're retired and property values suck thanks to the banksters.

                  "The object of persecution is persecution. The object of torture is torture. The object of power is power. Now do you begin to understand me?" ~Orwell, "1984"

                  by Lily O Lady on Wed Jun 06, 2012 at 06:21:47 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  this is an argument that (0+ / 0-)

                    many made back in the 60's... this is not new.  Voting against your self interest has always been a problem with electoral politics. Rich people and their media can easily set the tone to get folks to vote against their interests. This is why some people perceive the end of democracy.  But that is only electoral politics. And democracy seems only to be defined here at DKOS as a voting for elected officials thing.  Where we need democracy first is the work place... economic democracy.  Voting is the big thing here and I understand that but you will never legislate democracy.  Those kind of rights will continue to be won in the streets.  The mistake in Wisconsin was to take all that frustration against Republicans into the voting booth and not into the workplace. By throwing your lot into the electoral frame, you buy into the Citizens United Crowd's thinking.  Money buys elections... we always knew that.

                    Pass new laws to end media monopolization now.

                    by john from vermont on Wed Jun 06, 2012 at 07:39:34 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  I'm not sure what you mean, jfv. Taking their (0+ / 0-)

                      frustrations into the workplace after being stripped of their union rights would be very hard. And as they are public employees they are employees of the government, so I would think elections matter. Perhaps you suggest that working in public service is a bad idea?

                      Maybe you could provide and example of how teacher, police and firefighters can take their fight into the workplace.

                      "The object of persecution is persecution. The object of torture is torture. The object of power is power. Now do you begin to understand me?" ~Orwell, "1984"

                      by Lily O Lady on Wed Jun 06, 2012 at 08:09:43 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

        •  I've gotta wonder... (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          BitterEnvy, OhioNatureMom

          How many of the people mentioned above, whether they're conscious of it or not, don't want to support 'team darkie'?  

          Tribal affiliations run deep...

          The last few years have been a huge awakening for me of my awareness of racism.  I never thought it was so bad.

          The Fail will continue until actual torches and pitchforks are set in motion. -

          by No one gets out alive on Wed Jun 06, 2012 at 04:46:43 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Older folks get a pass... (6+ / 0-)

        I actually understand the older generations voting for walker and listening to fox news.  We need to encourage the younger folks that they gotta vote!  We are gonna have a bunch of older baby boomers running our government and making our policies which will be in place for decades!!! And the supreme court will have ALL baby boomers for the next 50 years!!!!!! Can you imagine all the justices living past Ginsberg's age?

        It's really frightening to think about the future. And once generation x and y mature - and hopefully they will- note I am an x-er although on the older end of the x spectrum - they will wake up to say WTF? Why am I piss poor and looking back on the good ole days when I could go on a cruise with mom and dad once a year?

        We all know older folks vote! And not all baby boomers are solid republicans.  So I think the only thing we can do is instil our generation that they must vote.....

        Now if you have sisters and brothers and children that voted for walker....forget everything I just wrote! Unless you are in politics, in the 1%, or looking to go into politics to get to be in the 1% ..... It's beyond belief!

        •  Old folks do not get a pass. They are the one's (42+ / 0-)

          who are dependent on Medicare, Social Security, and pensions.  If they are living on the proceeds of a 401K, they have an interest in seeing that the investment community is regulated and fair.  To give old people a pass is to say that when you get old, it is OK to be stupid.  It is not OK to be stupid.  At what age do you get to be a stupid old person?  65? 70? Older?  The safety net that progressives are concerned about affects old people as much as anyone else.  No, they do not get a pass.  

          And it feels like I'm livin'in the wasteland of the free ~ Iris DeMent, 1996

          by MrJersey on Tue Jun 05, 2012 at 07:48:45 PM PDT

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          •  Agreed.... (9+ / 0-)

            Old people do NOT get a pass, they are as culpable as anyone of any adult age.  If you were smart once, unless there is a serious medical reason, there is no excuse for 'age-related' stupidity.
            If you were able to use critical thinking once, then it must be continued, it keeps the mind supple and stops the lazy slide to irrationality.
            No pass for old people on the stupid question.
            There is no excuse to be willfully stupid at any age.

            I think, therefore I am........................... Plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose AKA Engine Nighthawk - don't even ask!

            by Lilyvt on Tue Jun 05, 2012 at 08:05:11 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  And demography is with the Republicans: (0+ / 0-)

              It's assumed the Republican Party is doomed demographically because of the emergence of a non-white majority.

              But I've read that, extrapolating from current aging and health trends, about 40% of the US population will be suffering from dementia by 2050. Demented voters are Republican voters.

              •  Well.... (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:

                I'll be over 100 in 2050, and I may be thinking about other things than the 40% of voters with dementia.
                Frankly, I'm concerned with the voters of today (who presumably don't have dementia) and still make the demented decision to vote completely against their own best interests when they vote for repubs.

                I think, therefore I am........................... Plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose AKA Engine Nighthawk - don't even ask!

                by Lilyvt on Wed Jun 06, 2012 at 07:04:56 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

          •  okay maybe not a pass..:-) (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            kyril, marina

            I don't know...some of them have lived a hard life. My grandparents grew up during Jim crow...some union workers in factories and coal mines were killed, terrorized, and tortured for just wanting to bring home enough money for their families to eat....Guess I just feel like their generation paid their price and has a lot to be proud of....

            Now it's the next generations turn....first the greatest generation in WWII, then progressive reforms: civil rights, voting rights, weekends, social security, Medicare....what is it that the next generation will leave as their legacy?  Facebook?

          •  Yup. Agreed. (9+ / 0-)

            I AM a Boomer.  First year Baby Boomer, in fact.  I turned 66 earlier this year (born nine months after VE Day).

            I do NOT give my fellow Boomers a pass for stupidity.  We were seniors in high school when JFK was shot in Nov. '63, and when The Beatles appeared on Ed Sullivan in Feb '64.  My generation lost people in Vietnam and protested the war when our relatives and friends were drafted and sent off to get killed for no fathomable reason (which is why some of us just damn near came unhinged when Dumbya and Dickie started two illegal and unconstitutional wars; Deja vu all over again, and it set up a mental state of PTSD before soldiers even came home with PTSD or in coffins this time).

            Unless they are medically and psychologically genuinely tested and afflicted with early-onset Alzheimer's, no passes for people my age who keep voting these cretins into office only to have these "elected" morons destroy the infrastructure of our country..., or worse, try or get their greedy and f##king sticky fingers on our Social Security monies.

            Nuh-uh.  No.

            I'm sick of attempts to steer this nation from principles evolved in The Age of Reason to hallucinations derived from illiterate herdsmen. ~ Crashing Vor

            by NonnyO on Tue Jun 05, 2012 at 09:27:16 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  Especially since (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            OhioNatureMom, marina, cosette

            I've been assured, with no shortage of smug self-aggrandizement, from a very young age that "with age comes wisdom."

            And yet I've heard ridiculous things all my life from my supposedly wiser elders that made me wonder, "How old will I have to be before that makes any damn sense?"

            My other car is a pair of boots.

            by FutureNow on Wed Jun 06, 2012 at 06:11:24 AM PDT

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      •  I used to think this was exclusive to Repubs... (3+ / 0-)

        until I started seeing people around here bend over backwards to glorify President Drone Murder.

        •  Ditto! (0+ / 0-)


          by snoopydawg on Tue Jun 05, 2012 at 09:48:08 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  You mean... (4+ / 0-)

          The guy who has managed to successfully target most of Al-Qaeda's senior staff without putting our troops in harm's way?  All while getting out troops out of Iraq responsibly and working (hoping, I feel some days) toward a self-sustaining Afghanistan?

          In general, I'm a pacifist.  I have a hard time killing the insects and mice that have gotten in to my house.  And I don't like the civilian deaths that we've been causing with our drone attacks.  But the sad truth is, war is ugly.  Always has been, always will be until we all agree to send robots after each other to die in a lonely uninhabited desert somewhere (which will happen for precisely as long as it takes for someone to realize what Al-Qaeda realized in the first place - targeting civilians has a much greater effect than wasting money on wars in the middle of nowhere...).  Kill Al-Qaeda's core, and you cut off its organizational abilities, which saves a lot of effort and a lot of lives later on... I don't like the drone attacks, but I like them better than the alternatives.

          If you want to find someone as irrational about something as Walker supporters, you might find them closer than your computer screen.

          (End long-suppressed rant)

          Necessity is the plea for every infringement of human freedom. It is the argument of tyrants; it is the creed of slaves. - William Pitt

          by Phoenix Rising on Wed Jun 06, 2012 at 12:33:06 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Are you implying it could be different? (0+ / 0-)

          Are you suggesting that a Republican president would not use drones?

          Are you suggesting that a Progressive president could be elected?

          Are you suggesting that not supporting Obama will create a more progressive society?

      •  Happily, my 80 yo Dad is not like that. He still (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        starts from the conservative position, but with some talk he can be brought to reason.  I think he's a closet liberal and doesn't know it.  He was just raised in another time with a lot of conservative influences, so that is his inclination.  He isn't as politically minded as I am, or he would probably have realized by now he isn't "one of them".  (I mean, he buys his four kids a subscription to Audubon every year as a gift for pete's sake.)

        "Slavery is the legal fiction that a person is property. Corporate personhood is the legal fiction that property is a person." David Korten, When Corporations Rule the World

        by Delta Overdue on Tue Jun 05, 2012 at 08:42:55 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Sounds kind of like my 94 year old dad. (5+ / 0-)

        Very intelligent. Accomplished. Always watched Fox news day and night and bought into whatever they said. As a smart career officer and veteran, I was surprised that he was so easily brainwashed and not able to recognize their propaganda for what it was. Lately, as my mom's health has declined drastically, and he has seen how his bleeding heart liberal children have been doing everything that needs to be done for our parents while our more conservative sibs just don't have time to even make a phone call, I see that he no longer is watching Fox. I wonder what has prompted the change. If I were to ask, he would be contrary and start watching again, most likely. So, I'll just speculate. But (sorry this is so long), before this recent change, I sort of came to the conclusion that personal loss of former capabilities might be at the root of buying into the Fox-style agenda....a way of lashing out at a feeling of growing helplessness. I don't know. I've always tried to figure it out, because in his personal life, Dad has always acted liberally. What he says and what he actually does/did didn't match up. He might bitch about global warming being a hoax, but recycle with a vengeance, as an example. He would give a big donation to the local homeless shelter. He would never pull up a tree seedling or harm the smallest insect (they have a right to live). He might gripe in generalities about certain groups of people, but like them individually and be angry if that friend weren't treated well because of who they were. He would side with his working children and grandchildren against unfair practices in their workplaces, but parrot a rightwing viewpoint in a generalized argument. Very frustrating. But maybe he's finally seeing the light with Fox news.

    •  I suspect it really comes down to (47+ / 0-)

      the modern version of tribalism.

      As you say his social circle or coffee klatsch says he is too liberal. We constantly and consistently overlook this form of emotionalism generated by our social circles in worldview and decision making.

      He is comfortable. The people he is comfortable with apply intense peer pressure for him to fit into the tribe he is comfortable with. They are traditional. Traditional = Republican.

      Add in the American male penchant for stubbornness....even in the face of overwhelming evidence ( I am NOT lost!!!!) and you have the dynamic that makes so many Americans vote against any semblance of rational self-interest.

      Iow, "what the neighbors say" is far more important than facts or logic, when the rubber meets the road.

      Humans are by and large social animals, not rational beings. That IS changing through the generations, but is still a HUGE factor in why things are so fucked up.

      •  Social grouping + Intellectual & emotional fatigue (24+ / 0-)

        I've been discussing this recently with my mother, who tends to vote Republican, but who also reacts with incredulity when I give her a summary of what Republicans of interest have recently done.

        She works in education administration, and has been decrying the increasing carelessness of administrators as people retire/are newly hired, and the carelessness of some teachers and students.

        A few years ago, she was blaming technology and overreaching government welfare for the change. Then she became a tech manager and started talking to me more often as her social circle shifted.

        Her most common complaint has been that she doesn't have the resources to look into everything that I mention to her when we speak. I'll see her eyes glaze over when I talk about a subject that she's built up many barriers to questioning (e.g. criticizing contemporary right-wing Christian groups), but the rest of the time she's often asking me questions.

        That is, she's looking for answers and acceptance, and doesn't have the mental or temporal resources to get answers or deal with the complexity of unraveling her deeply-held beliefs.

        So it seems to me that as information avenues increase, the quality of information is worse, people feel like they're more overwhelmed, and fatigue comes more easily (due to bad health and/or overstimulation, for whatever reasons), people are more likely to spend time with people that they feel liked/welcomed by - creating echo chambers and groupthink, the ideas within which become part of the person's self-identity.

        Hence, everyone in general is at greater risk of becoming less reasonable. The groups that are most susceptible to this are those that already relied on social groups - Republicans, the highly religious, teenagers, and the social media generation. Of course, there are also people who are more narcissistic or sociopathic - who don't actually care about the social attitudes of people as much as they care about gaining attention/power.

        At least, that's my theory.

        Supporter of philosophical constitutionalism, republicanism, and democratism. -3.5, -4.87 All about the rule of law and moderate regulation + Civility first + Constructive comments + Remember the cooperative principle

        by LimitedGovernment on Tue Jun 05, 2012 at 06:31:51 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  new discovery show called head games. (8+ / 0-)

        First episode demonstrated how we are hard wired to conform.  To the point of actually seeing something that is not there if the group says it is. Even those who claim to be non-conformists are actually just conforming to a different group.  I think it probably explains a lot.

      •  Well said. Bravo. I have often quipped that the (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        kyril, OhioNatureMom

        GOP system is based on a sort of group think and if you stray from the herd then you are one of them - a faceless, nameless other devoid of American principles, unholy and barely human.  It's a caricature of everything worthy of hate and the violence that comes with it.  They call them liberals and democrats or any derivative of those words. Sigh.  This is our political reality where the rhetoric is believed and people vote accordingly.

    •  That's what I always feel like saying to my dad, (5+ / 0-)

      "You used to be an intelligent person.  What happened?"

    •  but if he watches Faux News (10+ / 0-)

      as your quotes from him suggest, then remember that he is getting stupider by the day.

      As for age, I don't know. I'm turning 60 this year and wouldn't think of saying "fark you, I've got mine." And, on top of that, it sounds like your father's "mine" is pretty seriously threatened. I think there is a lot of cognitive dissonance involved in this. It sounds to me as though these are the things that he has believed his whole life and now he has just become more dug in as everything has become more polarized.

      I'm sorry for you having to reconcile all of the difficult feelings this must raise for you.

      "The fools are as plentiful as ever." Albert Parsons, Haymarket martyr

      by kainah on Tue Jun 05, 2012 at 07:00:48 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Ur sig reminds me of the saying... (0+ / 0-)

        "God must love stupid people: He/She made so many of them."

        That saying is particularly apt tonight.

        -8.88, -9.59 In the practice of tolerance, one's enemy is the best teacher. -Tenzin Gyatso, H.H. the Dalai Lama

        by BobSoperJr on Wed Jun 06, 2012 at 01:09:20 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Only some people do that (4+ / 0-)

      Others realize how much they have been helped and want others to be helped too.

      Women create the entire labor force.

      by splashy on Tue Jun 05, 2012 at 07:10:46 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  It's not biological or due to age. (18+ / 0-)

      At 72, I am convinced that getting old doesn't change a person's essential character, provided there is no dementia.  The things age changes are related more to physical deterioration; for instance, I am less likely to hike or adventure onto unfamiliar trails because I don't trust my knees, not because I have lost interest in nature or exercise.

      Although my parents were hopelessly to the right all their adult lives and hated Roosevelt, they were also only educated through eighth grade, lived in conservative Nebraska, and grew up very poor, with widowed mothers in the days before Social Security. If they were stingy when they were old and finally had enough to at least be comfortable, it was because they knew what poverty was like and were afraid. They were people who didn't think girls needed college, but at least in old age they had come around--mostly because of what public television said--to believing it was good that I was educated and had a career. So, very slightly, they became more open to ideas as they aged.

      My daughters have had a very different life and all three are well-educated, with careers that have given them better incomes than I ever had from teaching, but they focus on their own lives and ignore all causes, not even paying much attention to the news. They are good to the people in their lives and to themselves, but they see no need to know much about the world or try to improve it. And they have always been that way, maybe in negative reaction to my activism and involvement with groups trying to change things for the better. In any case, age doesn't enter into it.

      •  Thank you (4+ / 0-)

        My family, the younger ones, are the same.  They are good people but simply uninterested in politics and they don't seem to think it affects them.

        My parents were immigrants and poor but they were pro FDR and spoke about him reverently.  But they still were republicans because where we lived to have a county job you had to register republican.  My dad was a cop and usually was apolitical and my mother was fearful having grown up working in textile mills and she saw the power and fury that beat down union organizers.  She died young so she never got to see my actively involved in our teachers' union. She was not alive when I went on strike. I imagine it would have scared her.

        But my dad started turning to the right when Reagan was elected.  I am not sure why but I think my sister who was very much republican influenced him.  She lived near him whereas I was 1600 miles away.  

        I am so saddened that some here seem to think being right wing is a result of aging. I just disagree with that totally.

      •  mostly beacuse (11+ / 0-)
        mostly because of what public television said

        Media does matter!

        The complacency about right wing media domination is one of the many obstacles that prevent the US from ever becoming a decent civilized democracy.

        Propaganda works. Goebbels knew it, Stalin knew it, Murdoch knows it as well.  

        Draw your own conclusions.

        Mine is clear - Fox News needs to go - one way or the other. Maybe the US really needs a more dull TV, FCC mandated moderate balance NPR style on all channels.

        Yes, I know. Holy first cow and all.

        But US Government in the 50s understood this. They had seen Goebbels live. So they basically pulled regulation out of thin air. It can be done again.

    •  my family is the same way (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      kyril, BobSoperJr

      the way it was explained to me is that they do know they are voting against their own best interest but they believe that they are voting for a financially stable future for their children and grandchildren. They just never mention that all this really requires their children and grandchildren to make the same sacrifice their own.

      •  People intentionally voting vs. own interests (11+ / 0-)

        I heard an interesting perspective from a caller into Randi Rhodes' show last week--he was saying many conservative voters (particularly religious conservative voters) know they are voting against their own economic interests, but that doesn't phase them. They believe their reward will be in Heaven if only they vote for those God-fearing Republicans and against those gay-loving, fetus-killing Democrats. :-/

        Seen on Facebook: "Rich people are not the cause of a robust economy, they are the result of a robust economy."

        by boofdah on Tue Jun 05, 2012 at 07:35:39 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  it's not social in my family (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          kyril, boofdah, OhioNatureMom

          it's economic. they see conservative as being economically stable in the long term even if it is unkind to those who can't do for themselves.

        •  Whose "own interests"? (0+ / 0-)

          Please tell me what kind of an argument you are going to make to a low-wage non-union worker in the private sector who doesn't get a pension (i.e. most Wisconsin voters) why they should vote in the interest of public employees who are in a union and do get a pension.

          For the sake of argument, there may well be such an argument, but try making it to these people. They will not want to hear it. It's in their best interest to see that workers maintain collective bargaining when they themselves don't get it?

          This election was lost on this question. Progressives are going to have to figure out how to handle this kind of question in the future.

          (-5.50,-6.67): Left Libertarian
          Leadership doesn't mean taking a straw poll and then just throwing up your hands. -Jyrinx

          by Sparhawk on Tue Jun 05, 2012 at 07:55:15 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  well, (7+ / 0-)

            hurting other people out of spite does not serve my interests, even if they're getting paid almost as much as I am.

            Oooh, look, a shiny thing -- a PENSION!  Even if his total compensation is about the same as mine, I should resent the fact that part of his compensation comes in the form of a PENSION!

            Ignore the shiny objects, look at the fact that the economy grows under Democrats and stagnates under conservatives. Liberal policies create the kind of economic growth that makes everyone better off.

            all morals are relative, but some are more relative than others.

            by happymisanthropy on Tue Jun 05, 2012 at 08:20:05 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  okay (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            semiot, OhioNatureMom, The Nose, marina

            because that teacher who has a good  job will help you in many ways

            1) educating your children
            2) paying taxes in your community
            3) owning and maintaining property
            4) shopping at local stores, hiring local contractors

            generally adding to the tax revenues and commercial activity of your community in too many ways to count

            for full impact, spelling out what the other guys plan to do is important too

            1) no pensions
            2) no healthcare
            3) no post office
            4) no public records of mortgages
            5) no clean water, air or soil

            generally looting your town and turning you and your descendents into illiterate debt serfs dumpster diving for carcinogen-rich leftovers

            It is the highest impertinence ... in kings and ministers, to pretend to watch over the economy of private people, ... They are themselves always, and without any exception, the greatest spendthrifts in the society. - Adam Smith

            by treesrock on Wed Jun 06, 2012 at 05:57:22 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  Union wages have always propped up (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            OhioNatureMom, The Nose

            other wages.  It's not at all complicated.

            David Koch is fucking Longshanks, and Occupy is the real Braveheart.

            by PsychoSavannah on Wed Jun 06, 2012 at 05:58:40 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  My husband plays cards every six (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      OhioNatureMom, mkor7

      weeks for the last 20 years or so.  He is the only Democrat in his group.  I sympathize with the diarist.  One of the fellows he plays cards with has two children that are teachers in WI.  He is a huge Walker fan.  His two kids are Democrats.  They're just starting out in life.  You would think he would care about the quality of what their lives as educators in WI will be like.  Nope.  

      One of the other guys he plays cards with drives school bus.  He's retired.  He claims he doesn't need the money, but he just needs something to do(not sure about that).  However, this guy, he makes $13 driving school bus.  The district he works for is having to sell of their buses and subcontract out the jobs to a bussing company.  He says the bussing company will pay the drivers $10 an hour.  He says, you don't need to make $13 an hour to drive bus.  How about this:  DON'T YOU WANT THE MOST QUALIFIED PEOPLE AVAILABLE TO DRIVE AROUND OUR CHILDREN?  DO YOU REALLY NOT CARE IF THEY LOSE THE BETTER DRIVERS AND HIRE PEOPLE THAT ARE LESS QUALIFIED FOR $3 LESS AN HOUR?  I  guess not.

      I don't get it.  I really don't.  

      "Undermining Americans' belief in their own institutions of self-government remains a prime GOP electoral strategy." — Mike Lofgren

      by churchlady on Tue Jun 05, 2012 at 09:29:51 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  no (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      OhioNatureMom, The Nose

      I'm old. If anything, I'm more tolerant now.
      Same with my dad.

      It is the highest impertinence ... in kings and ministers, to pretend to watch over the economy of private people, ... They are themselves always, and without any exception, the greatest spendthrifts in the society. - Adam Smith

      by treesrock on Wed Jun 06, 2012 at 05:02:37 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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