The Political Season: Not Just Political Convention Season!
- Don’t you get tired of politics?
Everyday it infiltrates our lives through the news, through jokes and humor, through human interest stories, through editorials (like this one!), through our daily lives, whether we realize or want it or not. Sure, countries need governments, but does the American democracy such as ours need so much darn politics?
Perhaps it’s not the politics in and of itself that is so bad. It’s the negative politics engaged by so much on both sides during this season as we approach the major political conventions. Both sides go around tooting their own horns and saying the other side is basically evil. And the press, fulfilling its own little role in this melodramatic daytime soap opera, reports on every word as though the world is hanging by a thread. The candidates are vacuous, inane, empty-headed. The lines they throw the American public are entirely poll-based. Their policies are not set by a careful and critical look at problems and possible solutions, nor by strong philosophies, but rather by opinion poll and the religious and political extremes.
This year, more senators and representatives than ever in both parties will not seek re-election because of their reported frustration with the bipartisan plague that has swept over Washington in recent years. Everything is “us” against “them,” and everyone is made to look like the bad guy or girl. Is this any way to run the most successful democracy in history? Through bickering??
If there’s anything psychology has taught us, it’s that when people are aggressive, rarely anything positive gets accomplished. You cannot honestly and openly listen to a person if they’re shooting slings and arrows at you; you’re too busy defending yourself! Cooperative politics is the answer, but rarely seen nowadays. We should ask and expect more from our politicians.
It’ll be good to get away for a few weeks, first attending the annual convention of the American Psychological Association and then, a few days later, heading to Cape Cod for the 2nd Annual Connected Computer symposium for a week. Both events allow me to talk with interested professionals within the mental health field to try and better coordinate our online efforts to disseminating mental health information.
It’ll also give me the opportunity to show off some of the neato places one finds while traveling online. For instance, as much as I disdain Microsloth, check out their new online magazine, The Site; it’s interesting, visually-different, and talks about online behaviors in a frank, down-to-earth manner. These conferences will also allow me to share my vision of near-future professional opportunities online. Continuing education courses, research databases, etc.