The Political Center

politicalmoderation:

The closing:

My original intent for this blog was to refute the non-factual and poorly-thought-out stances of some of the more extreme political activists here on tumblr. In time, the blog turned into a more generic forum to discuss politics and politics-related topics. It’s been a great experience, and loads of fun, but with the rigmarole of college and real life piling up, I think I will be taking a permanent hiatus from this blog.

The giveaway

As a ‘thank you’ to those of you who followed the blog, I’m going to be giving out a few small gifts for the holidays. And if any of you would like a Christmas/Chanukah/generic/other card this holiday season, I’ll send you one. You don’t have to like or reblog this post, just put a message in my inbox if you’d like a card or gift.

Other cool blogs to follow:

rachelrantsandschtuff

If you’re looking for the DL on political issues, particularly women’s rights and education, this is the blog for you. Rachel’s one of the smartest people on tumblr, and has a killer sense of humor logic.

pullingawaythespooks

Politics, philosophy, art, butts. Tumblr-classy. PATS is an all-around great blogger.

In parting:

Thank you again for following the blog. I hope you gained something from it. You are welcome to follow my personal blog, hmrg, though I don’t update that often.

Have a great December.

In case you missed it.

I will be closing the blog today / Holiday giveaway

The closing:

My original intent for this blog was to refute the non-factual and poorly-thought-out stances of some of the more extreme political activists here on tumblr. In time, the blog turned into a more generic forum to discuss politics and politics-related topics. It’s been a great experience, and loads of fun, but with the rigmarole of college and real life piling up, I think I will be taking a permanent hiatus from this blog.

The giveaway

As a ‘thank you’ to those of you who followed the blog, I’m going to be giving out a few small gifts for the holidays. And if any of you would like a Christmas/Chanukah/generic/other card this holiday season, I’ll send you one. You don’t have to like or reblog this post, just put a message in my inbox if you’d like a card or gift.

Other cool blogs to follow:

rachelrantsandschtuff

If you’re looking for the DL on political issues, particularly women’s rights and education, this is the blog for you. Rachel’s one of the smartest people on tumblr, and has a killer sense of humor logic.

pullingawaythespooks

Politics, philosophy, art, butts. Tumblr-classy. PATS is an all-around great blogger.

In parting:

Thank you again for following the blog. I hope you gained something from it. You are welcome to follow my personal blog, hmrg, though I don’t update that often.

Have a great December.

Disney needs to make a band for Obama called Won Election.

Chart-topping singles include “What Makes You Barack” and “Vote While We’re Young.”

My husband somehow got away with not watching any Disney classics in his childhood. Which should I make him watch?

Circumcision is a barbaric tribal practice that amounts to child abuse. Before any individual undergoes any permanent body modification such as tattooing or sex reassignment surgery, they must be considered old enough to understand the consequences. You cannot understand the ramifications of this act to your physical being until after puberty, when your genitals have fully developed.

There is a petition set up at the ‘We the People’ web site asking the Obama administration to take action and protect minors from forced non-therapeutic genital cutting.  If this petition receives at least 25,000 signatures by December 14 then the Obama Administration is obligated to issue an official response.

Please take a minute to sign the petition.

subvertcliche:

mello-dramatic:

Everyone who reblogs this will get the title of a book to read based on their bio/posts.

Everyone. I mean it.

THIS IS THE BEST POST

I HAVE EVER SEEN

EVER

I hope it’s about butts.

Drop the name of something from your Christmas wish list in my askbox, and you may get some goodies this holiday season.

Materialism.

I am going to decorate my absent coworker’s desk with pictures of _________.

?

solvepolitics:

The attached episode of This American Life deals with the personal issues created by political divides. I think you should listen to it. (It’s a public media show hosted by an atheist, so if that’s going to make you distrust it completely, then don’t bother listening. It also treats conservatives with a sufficient degree of respect and consideration, so if that turns you off, then you can skip it as well.)

It deals with politics forming a wedge between people who might otherwise get along. I’ve experienced this kind of divide even in response to my political agnosticism (the term is linguistically inaccurate, but useful). Because there’s something weird about me: I haven’t decided what I think about every single thing in the whole world. I know most people have, even (and especially) young teenagers. But even at 22, I’m still trying to decide what I think about even simple issues, like how economics works and what is ethical.

The fact that I cannot yet wholeheartedly support some of my friends or family’s political declarations becomes very obvious around election time. I grow quiet when they express opinions. My lack of support sometimes seems tantamount to damnation and somehow, by trying to stay uninvolved, I still become an immediate threat to their deep beliefs. So I face a certain kind of anxiety whenever someone expresses an absolutist political perspective.

But things like “Obama is destroying this country” and “Republicans just want to control women’s bodies” set off all my Logic Alarms and that’s hard to shut down. I get that it can be hard to maintain accuracy in speech when you really believe and feel something at the core of yourself. But I don’t think that excuses inflammatory language, especially when I see the kind of anger and hatred it feeds.

People justify divisiveness because they say the stakes are just too high to let the issue go in favor of false civility: ‘If my health, my wealth, and my freedom are threatened, I can’t just drop a “c’est la vie” and go on being “friendly.” I have to show you that you are wrong.’

And yet, in our workplaces (where the stakes are arguably higher), we discuss courses of action with rationality and fairness, for the most part. Why is that? How do we put aside personal considerations to figure out what’s best? Where do we get the kind of humility to admit we don’t know exactly what the best plan is and we need to do some researching and talking to figure it out? And why does that ability just disappear in issues of national or state importance?

Maybe because in work, we’re decision-makers and we’re on the hook for what we choose. But in politics we’re a commodity. Sure we have democratic power and the decision-makers couldn’t keep their jobs without us, but billions of dollars and millions of human work hours are spent trying to create a perceived alignment between our perspectives and theirs. That money and time is spent to buy votes. Technically illegal, of course, but essentially true. I think a lot of effort goes into creating the illusion that there are only two ways to look at America. I think a lot of money gets put into making us think that our beliefs and their policies are intricately connected. Because once a policy stems from your belief, you don’t need to think about what the right answer is. To quote the episode: “Ideology doesn’t need to deliberate.” When your beliefs about the world are rock solid, you don’t need to listen. You don’t need more information. You don’t need to learn anything. All you need to do is yell.

And that’s what political parties want, I think. To maintain their power, they just need a mob of people who are absolutely sure that they are right. They don’t need informed decision-makers, just more believers.

Of course I’m not saying there aren’t exceptions. I’m sure some people in political office display a lot of integrity, etc. But the system doesn’t create them. It merely allows them.

The episode mentions these guys as an example of political dialogue that works (i.e. aids understanding, searches for solutions, doesn’t compromise beliefs).

I haven’t read their book, but I already know I like their intentions: to help people learn to live together, discuss the issues and strengthen their beliefs and opinions through critical thought.

Now that the election is over, maybe we can take a few years to learn to listen, learn to discuss and learn to think critically without aggression or defensiveness. That’s what I plan to do: learn to understand my beliefs and others’ so that I can make decisions that will change my world for the better.