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Comedy and politics

By maxwell edison ·
As many of you may or may not know, accuracy in reporting is one of my pet peeves. (This includes "reporting" of any kind, from any and all sources, including an individual. A false premise, I've often said, equals a flawed conclusion and/or a poor decision.)

The Pew Research Center, which I consider one of the more reputable organizations that measure public opinion and behavior, has reported something that is, if you think about it, rather sad. 20 percent of young adults in America, the report says, learn their political campaign news from late night television shows such as the Tonight Show with Jay Leno, The Late Show with David Letterman, Saturday Night Live, The Daily Show, and others. Man oh man, talk about an uninformed electorate. One-fifth of the voting public cast their votes based on comedy and satire! I find that incredible. I find that disturbing.

Another 20 percent gathered their "news" from the Internet. The Internet can certainly be a source for credible information, to be sure, but it can also be a source for the absolute worst misinformation.

Nightly network news was named as a regular source of campaign news by 35 percent, newspapers by 31 percent, and 38 percent said cable news networks was a source for political campaign information.

Obviously there are overlaps in sources, which is understandable, since many people, myself included, use a myriad of sources to gather information and as a way to (hopefully) weed out misinformation.

But the article concludes as follows:

"Young adults were far more likely than those over age 50 to say they regularly learned something from comedy TV shows ? by 21 percent to 3 percent. In general, Americans are poorly informed on specific information about the campaign. Those who regularly learn about the campaigns from entertainment shows were even less informed."

They "learned something from comedy TV shows"? Comedy TV shows?????? Sad, very sad indeed.

What do you think? What are your sources? Do you think the Internet is more a source of information or misinformation? Do you even consider the "comedy" shows at all? How many try to find the necessary "balance"?

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mrafrohead, for the record

by maxwell edison In reply to

You said that you think that you're viewed as a joke. Not at all, at least I don't, nor have I seen anyone else suggest such a thing. (Well, Oz did on a couple of occasions, but he doesn't count.) On the contrary, you're one of the good guys around here, at least as far as I'm concerned.

My "write your own punch line" to "elections are a joke" sentiment was only my own attempt at a little dry, but lame, humor, but intended to make somewhat of a point, I suppose.

I'll reply to the rest of your questions later, after I've had some time to gather my thoughts on them (and get some work done).


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Misunderstood again

by Oz_Media In reply to mrafrohead, for the recor ...

Mrafrohead and I have gone toe to toe. He has called me someretarded names, I have returned the insults. End of story.

In another sense, I've seen us agree on several points mroe recently.

For Max, to say someone, whether me or anyone, 'doesn't count' in pretty dumb. All opinions count to the open minded. Mind you, I've PROBABLY said the same about you and you will remind me shortly. However I think we've recently broken some new ground and digging that up would be a poor idea now.

mrafrohead- You know as well as I do, we had a very heated rant, in the same sense, I'm SURE i've seen your recent points and we've agreed on several posts.

I don't think you're an idiot or that your opinion doesn't count, if anything, I'm an idiot as much as you are or anyone else here with such stubborn opinions.

It is the ones who don't let up that succeed, the other just go to pasture BAAAAAAAAAD conformity!

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Right to complain

by TheChas In reply to Quick question...

In my opinion, if you choose not to vote in an election, you have no right to complain about the outcome. Or, about any bad decisions that the winner makes.

As to problems with initiatives, the US is a democracy not a plurality.

Yes, when a vote is taken, majority rules.
However, in a democracy, we have checks and balances.
Initiatives are struck down by the courts because they are bad laws that violate the state or federal constitution.
Just because an idea is popular, does not make it good or just.

It would be nice to get back to a time when our elected leaders were true public servants. With the cost of campaigning, the successful politician is the one who can raise the most money.


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I agree

by mrafrohead In reply to Right to complain

I have forfeit my right to complain about the elected officials and their decisions. Except for those still in office while I voted. I can still whine about them

But that isn't what I'm complaining about. I'm complaining about them taking away our voice. They stole it from us.

"However, in a democracy, we have checks and balances.
Initiatives are struck down by the courts because they are bad laws that violate the state or federal constitution.
Just because an idea is popular, does not make it good or just."

This is where I have problem. There is a process that you have to go through to get your initiative on a ballot. I has to be approved. So how can they approve it and THEN say it's unconstitutional. If it was so wrong, they SHOULD NOT have approved it in the first place. They are reneging on what they said.

As for the idea being good or just, that's what goes in with the vote. If we vote in a bad decision, we need to live with it. The government, can't just come in and say too bad, so sad and just overturn what we say! They are here to do our bidding. Not the other way around. They volunteer for that position. But that isn't how they act when voted in. All of the sudden they think they're gods or something and can do what they want, and when they want it. Where we, the people that elected them in office, no longer count. They do what they please.

That's why I don't vote anymore. If I don't vote and they don't do what we voted in, then I can't ***** about it anymore. Because then it doesn't matter, as I didn't waste my voice. The government will just what they want anyhow, they just want out money...


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Initiative review

by TheChas In reply to I agree

I don't know about your state's process.

In Michigan, the review that takes place on an initiative only verifies that the wording is proper. The review does not cover the legalities or legitimacies of the proposed law.

If you want a proposal from the initiative process to have any chance of "sticking", you need to have it reviewed by several lawyers who specialize in constitutional law.

Instead of "bad" law, I should have said "poorly written legislation".


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old proverb

by john_wills In reply to Quick question...

It is better to light one candle than to curse the darkness.

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by mrafrohead In reply to old proverb

But what if they take all of your candles away?

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practical voting

by john_wills In reply to

The candidates may all be destructive, but I can usually discern the least destructive. The candidates are not the candles, my choice among them is. What is the purpose of the state(NOT what are its functions, or anything but the question I ask)? What are the states with which I am concerned doing contrary to that purpose(NOT how are they failing in their purpose NOR what are they doing that I disagree with)? At this level of analysis all my wonderful schemes for a brave new world take on merely secondary or tertiary significance, so I can forget most of the ideology when selecting candidates.

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by TheChas In reply to Comedy and politics


This research just proves what I have been noticing over the past 20 plus years.

The general population in the USA prefers to be entertained rather than informed.

This trend accelerated a number of years ago when the FCC watered down the public service aspect for radio and TV station licenses.

In my youth, between the hours of 6 PM and 7 PM, the ONLY show on ANY TV channel was the nightly news. Even the radio stations had extended news content at 6 PM.

Now, with virtually all media outlets owned by large entertainment conglomerates, the goal is no longer to report the news, but to capture market share for the time slot.
The "news" is tailored to attract the target audience that will generate the most advertising revenue.

I myself am very scared by some of the get out the vote campaigns that are going on.
Should they succeed, most of the new voters will be voting for the candidate that looks the best, or entertains them the most.

Better we should add a test to see if the potential voter has any knowledge of basic local, state, national, and world events.


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There is only one reliable source

by mrbill- In reply to Comedy and politics

I get all my political, social and world news from a voice inside my head named Bubba. Bubba knows all and see all so he is the best source I could find. With the current state of print, broadcast and internet misinformation I think Bubba wins hands down. Also if he tells me something I disagree with I tell him and he changes it. Sorta like the outside sources sometimes do. Now sometimes Bubba does get something wrong. When that happens I put my hands over my ears and just start yelling LALALALALALALALALA... It works for me, but I get the weirdist looks from people around me, especially if I'm on the Interstate.

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