I really feel the need to ask this question. I have been watching a lot of political commentary lately, and reading about it on the web, and I can’t for the life of me understand why politics is still relevant.
Democracy was invented thousands of years ago in Athens. It was created at a time when we didn’t have all the answers to everything that’s happening around us, and thus philosophy was used to arrive at the most rational answer, which while good for the time, isn’t so great today. As Stephen Hawking said in ‘The Grand Design’, “Philosophy is dead. Philosophy has not kept up with modern developments in Science…”. And he’s right. Philosophy and science are no longer comparable.
I feel, much in the same way that philosophy’s relevance is waning, that the relevance of politics should also be declining along with it, but I am not seeing this happen in the world around me. It seems to me, that it is rising. This year we have elections going on around the world, most noteworthy is the American Presidential Election later this year. We’ve had months upon months of republican primary posturing, talking points, ads, backstabbing, news coverage, debates and all the BS that accompanies such things.
They keep going on and on, on how Obama is destroying the country, and blah blah blah and they debate back and forth on the best way to do this and that. Political whim’s and economic talking points of which little is based on fact. All designed to increase a politicians popularity, increase his chances of wining the primary, and eventually the presidency. In short, it’s all pandering.
But my question is, why is politics still even relevant? Politics is run on the whims and opinions of people, which can be and often are wrong and biased. It’s just as easy to believe in a lie, as it is to believe in the truth. All you need to do is keep repeating the lie; Eventually it sticks.
On matters of the economy, health, education and all things relevant to the modern world, science and mathematics provide most of the basic answers already. We can come to the best, most efficient conclusions through statistics, studies, experiments using the scientific method to arrive at the most suitable solution to todays problems, so why so much pandering? Why so much BS? Why such radical different solutions to the same problem? Why are most of these solutions also BS?
It’s unbelievable that in this modern age, we are using social tools invented thousands of years ago to discuss modern problems. Especially when we have the necessary tools and methods to solve it ourselves so much better.
The problem is two-fold; First off, a misinformed populace, and the second that politicians live inside their bubble, and you can’t evolve and update a system from within it. It’s hard to think outside the box when you’ve spent your whole life in the box and disconnected from reality on top of that!
The first problem is greater than the second. Politicians derive their power from us. There is an invisible balance of power between the government and the people. The government does everything in its power to distract the people, give them the freebies they need while they do their work behind the scenes tipping the balance of power to their side. On the other hand, the people lap up the entertainment whether it be feeding Christians to the lions, or watching the NFL.
Who takes the time these days to really research how their country is run? How the democratic process has been usurped, or how much of the power lies with the state. A few do, most don’t care. Presuming safety in numbers, and that this time is different, this time democracy will remain uncorrupted. It’s almost amazing at how easy it is to numb a populace. It just takes time, and a bit of distraction.