The Rise of Rigid Cynicism – The Growing Use of Political Pledges by U.S. Elected Officials

By September 6th, 2013


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The Relevance of Reason – Business and Politics

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(Release Date: October 1, 2013)

(Brody and Schmitt Publishers, an Imprint of Summerland Publishing)(2013)

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Excerpt from The Relevance of Reason – Business and Politics

The Rise of Rigid Cynicism

          The sheer volume of data combined with our ready access to information are certainly two of the sideline wonders of our Age of Information. And yet for a myriad of reasons, especially in Current America, it ever easier to parrot that which is heard from others rather than to think for ourselves. Similarly, it is ever easier to simply rebut “your facts” with my facts” rather than do the heavier work of reasoning. This is due partly to the wired, info-laden nature of our society, to our obsession with brevity and speed, and to the niche-splintering of our media, but it is also due to something far more over-arching and serious — the zero-sum, Darwinistic view many Americans have of our political and economic lives. This alone has manner of our analysis and changed the nature and tone of our conversations. This parallels the rise of ideological thinking in which healthy skepticism has become supplanted by rigid cynicism.

Adapted from Borgen, M., The Relevance of Reason 0f The Hard Facts and Real Data About the State of Current America – Business and Politics (2013), p. 6. All rights reserved.


Fact of the Day

The Growing Use of Political Pledges By U.S. Elected Officials

          During the course of especially the last several decades there has been an increase in the number of elected officials who have “yielded to the demands from partisan activists for formally ‘pledge’ not to compromise on a growing number of issues.” One of the most well-known political pledges may be Grover Norquist’s and his American’s for Tax Reform’s “Taxpayer Protection Pledge,” which was first introduced decades ago. As of 2012, it had been signed by 39 U.S. Senators (i.e. 39% — an almost veto-proof minority) and 219 representatives (50.3% of the House of Representatives). An increasing number of progressives have similarly, but in a less organized and disciplined manner, agreed too blindly and broadly not to make concessions on certain types of entitlements, such as Social Security and Medicare.

Borgen, M., The Relevance of Reason 0f The Hard Facts and Real Data About the State of Current America – Business and Politics (2013), p. 259-260 citing Reynolds, R. The Wall Street Journal, December 23, 2012. See also (i) Moore, S., “The Weekend Interview with Grover Norquist,” The Wall Street Journal, November 24-25, 2012, and (ii) Scherer, M., “Into the Wild,” Time, July 8/July 15, 2013, p. 52 (A cleverly written and revealing summary of the frequently disparate views of former U.S. Senator Alan Simpson and Grover Norquist relating to, among other things, the uses and necessities of compromise in the political process).

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This entry was posted on Friday, September 6th, 2013 at 9:41 am and is filed under American condition, American conversation, Information Age, Latest News, Political Cynicism. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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