Too much fuss about civility

  • Article by: Bonnie Blodgett
  • Updated: October 27, 2012 - 7:15 PM

Just think about what's not getting discussed as we prattle on about style.

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sincewhenOct. 27, 1210:14 PM

You're right, compromise is overrated. But to state you are all knowing and the other half simply "lie" makes discourse a little difficult.

ginny6Oct. 27, 1211:56 PM

Amen, Bonnie!

erikj3Oct. 28, 12 3:05 AM

The 1% has gone far enough.I'm of the mind that it's almost torches and pitchforks time. Mark my words: It's coming.

wisebookOct. 28, 12 7:10 AM

I don't care much about civility after all we are probably more civil than many times in history (Aaron Burr shot Alexander Hamilton, Preston Brooks caned Charles Sumner). But what I do care about is getting things done. Politics is the art of compromise. If you do not believe in compromise, you have no business holding elected office.

aunsethOct. 28, 12 7:19 AM

Civility is often a reflection of character, and that's why it matters. It's an avenue for true content. . . . and the truth about tax returns is often more evident in personal contributions to charity. This percentage of voluntary contributions suggests the content of a person's true concerns about others. (It's always easier to give away other people's money.) The fact that Obama pumped his way beyond his near-zero average just before an election year tells something about concern of image over reality.

charlie99Oct. 28, 12 8:02 AM

Civility matters because it's the lubricant of human interactions and a basic sign of respect. To suggest otherwise is woefully misguided, unproductive, and frankly, quite sad. Our prime current example is President Obama, whose arrogance and condescension have undermined whatever abilities he might have had to advance his issues, including those noted by the author. From the start of Obama's term, when he told House Whip Eric Cantor, "Elections have consequences, and Eric, I won," to this past week's 3rd presidential debate, in which Obama interrupted Romney 23 times (to Romney's 1), we have a president whose uncivil, me-first personality is on full, unfortunate display.

SnippetOct. 28, 12 9:49 AM

Bonnie Blodgett's beef is not, at the end of the day, with excessive "civility." It is with disagreement itself. - the only thing the mavens of tolerance cannot tolerate.

SnippetOct. 28, 12 9:59 AM

>>> The 1% has gone far enough.<<< Meaning, I assume, that they have been forced to pay for enough social program? >>> I'm of the mind that it's almost torches and pitchforks time. Mark my words: It's coming.<<< This is more a wish than a prediction, I have a feeling, but no one should wish for such. The world that the pitchfork and torch wielders would make wouould not be an improvement over this one. It is virtually guaranteed to be dramatically worse.

pumiceOct. 28, 1210:30 AM

TAKE 2... From the article: "I can't help thinking how much better the debate experience would be if that air time were used to enlighten the ignorant about all those other issues, the ones that are polarizing the nation precisely because of the paucity of factual reporting and our media's habit of allowing lies and distortions to go unquestioned because it's better to offer a 'balanced' version of the truth than to lose the advertising support of the Exxon Mobil Corp." Exactly, Ms. Blodgett. Traveling in Iowa and Nebraska, I've just been exposed to my first Crossroads GPS ads.

Civility is a broken tool when dealing with people whose website proclaims, "E]nduring American values such as freedom, limited government, low taxes and individual responsibility are being trampled underfoot by Washington’s political elite." What. A. Crock.

Crossroads is on the Romney bandwagon, redefining "freedom" as "the economic freedom for venture capitalists to 'harvest' companies and undeveloped as well as developing nations at a profit." Government hasn't been so limited since the do-nothing Congress of Truman's time. Taxes on carried interest are at historical lows; effective tax rates for high-income earners are very close to historical lows. The top marginal rate was 91% in 1960, 70% in 1980, 28% in 1988, 31% in 1991, 39.6% in 1993, and 35% today. And the official Republican Party line that 47% of Americans--workers at the bottom of the economic ladder who aren't paid a living wage, Social Security recipients, Medicare recipients, military personnel at lower pay grades and Veterans, all "dependent," "irresponsible" "victims" who won't take individual responsibility and think they should be "entitled" to take "health care, food, housing, you-name-it" from the "makers"--that official Party line should offend anyone with a sense of justice.

davehougOct. 28, 1211:11 AM

How many $$ are spent on political advertising and how few are spent stating where a candidate stands. How much air time is spent on the horse race aspect and how little is spent on critiques of policies. Debates tell me more about style advisors & handlers than about ideas for the future.


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