Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Misc.

The Albuquerque Journal had an excellent story on the problem of high school dropouts this morning in Albuquerque.  You can cite  poverty  as the main reason so many kids leave school.  It was an important story but somehow the reporter never got around to talking to the Governor or Mayor to see if they had any ideas on how to help with this issue.  Some people are arguing on the Journal facebook page that they don't have any responsibility for the problem.  That is arguing that elected officials are not supposed to be leaders.  Of course that is exactly what we have to deal with in Albuquerque's City Hall and the State Capitol.  No leadership.

I have talked to someone who is putting all of their travel plans on hold for the future until the Ebola outbreak is contained.  I can understand that, but one thing I don't get is how people can think Ebola is so dangerous while climate change is not!  They are very selective in the science the choose to accept I suppose.

Maggie Toulouse Oliver, Democratic candidate for Secretary of State, will go up on TV with ads soon.  I watched it and it is professionally done.  It has probably been done for some time, but I suggest that she get another one together talking about the voter suppression attempted by her opponent and the Governor.  Even the US Supreme Court has ruled against such attempts. We really need her in this office, so send her some money. 

And while you are at it send Democratic Land Commissioner Ray Powell a few bucks to keep the Land Office from being totally controlled by the oil and gas industry.

3 comments:

Bubba Muntzer said...

Why indeed aren't these people talking about climate change?

Don't worry. I'm taking down names. When New York City is underwater and the climate deniers have all fled to their private estates and people are looking for food and shelter and someone to blame, I will publish the list.

New Mexican said...

Your comment below;

"I can understand that, but one thing I don't get is how people can think Ebola is so dangerous while climate change is not!"

While both Ebola and climate change are real, one (Ebola) folks see themselves as being able to do something about and the other (climate change) they see themselves as powerless to do anything. They do not think they are responsible, that it is a phenomena that is natural, like the tides.

This is one of the consequences of the rhetoric of the political left. Cried wolf too, too many times.

The right has their issues also, no doubt about it.

Bubba Muntzer said...

That's a good comment, thought provoking, too, by New Mexican. The idea about what people (psychologically, you could say) do with things they don't think they control could explain a lot of things in this world.

In politics of course, starting with why the Democratic Party, which should have the most potential voters, can't get them out to vote.

But you can take it way beyond that, I'd propose.

His comment about the rhetoric of the political left provoked some critical self analysis. It was a good reminder that polemics - arguing for a political point of view - is often based on layers of assumptions, and that I don't normally question the ones I assume.

After reading New Mexican's comment, though, I tried. I could immediately see why some of the Right's overheated rhetoric actually makes it harder for them to build political support for their positions, such as when they try to strike fear of hoardes of immigrants.

Or that Obamacare is a Socialist takeover of government.

But what about my arguments? Like some on the Left I've argued that Obamacare is actually a big gift to insurance companies, mandating millions to become their customers, but insurance companies didn't see it that way. Why?

Probably because their calculations already had them maximizing their profits and they didn't want the regulations that made them take on pre-existing conditions.

Neither argument, the right's or left's, affected people without health insurance, who see themselves not as ideologues but as people without health insurance.

One of the key assumptions people make, right and left, is about poverty. Are poor people simply lazy, or is the poverty of masses of people the inevitable result of our economic system.

During my years of arguing the latter case, quite convincingly in my mind, I've come across poor people who are lazy. Hmmm.

My natural inclination is to argue that there are reasons for their laziness. They've been beat down, or they see that their work doesn't return the returns it should, the return that others in other positions receive, and so on.

The right can point out instances where people have risen out of poverty, and might argue that for the rest, given the conditions that exist, poor people have to find a way to overcome and to work harder and smarter - something like that.

The thing is, though, what has all the argumentation done, one way or another, from the left or the right, to sway opinion in the United States. This, to me, is the key point New Mexican makes. The Left obviously hasn't won many arguments lately, and hasn't prompted the powers that be to do anything about global warming, so why.

Time for some critical self analysis. As a side note, politicians aren't as concerned about polemics as they are with getting elected.