We have an unimaginable access to information. The actual effects of this are just beginning to be felt. One arena I think it can bring vast changes to is politics.
While in Kenya some years back and I had a discussion with a taxi driver. I was a bit frustrated with my experience at the local customs office where in my estimation we had been legally robbed by having to pay half the cost of the what had been shipped to us. The box had received damage. The Customs did not have part in the actual transporting or shipping of it, they did not provide any service of note besides holding onto your goods until you paid them
We discussed certain topics and ventured into politics. (I do this often as some of you may know or have surmised) I compared the customs process to what I thought were more straightforward and in the open in America. We discussed how the Americans were better informed through media and other sources about their government.
I proposed that in Kenya it could now take a concerned citizen, recording some corrupt ongoing on their cellphone, have it released to the public resulting in changes occurring faster then expected.
It wasn’t that people knew about corruption and didn’t care. They just needed to be informed and they would. I did not expect to be proven so right and potentially wrong so soon.
Only in America.
The 2016 Presidential elections have been quintessential political theater. If this was released as a DVD it would be the full universal special edition package. With behind the scenes access, full-commentaries, every genre form drama to tragedy both on stage and behind. The kind of events that must be actually happening because who could possibly green-light any of it as believable if presented with it? All this with the stakes of the election.
On to the rights and wrongs.
I was right in how technology can make previously hidden information public. The deluge of material from Wikileaks to recordings of people saying and doing things in ‘private’ is on full display.
Was utterly wrong about the American press. They may be free but that includes the freedom to be as biased and selective of what information they present to the public.
Right about how little the general public knew about the government corruption.
Wrong to assume how much people would care when the information was presented. (I still think enough do/will care)
I was right that people cared about what politicians say and do in private but wrong about how much that mattered, especially if its someone on their ‘side.’
There is a thing to remember though about America. The freedom of speech. Possibly only in America is it as strongly valued.
During the October 9th Debate, candidate Trump indicated that if he won the presidency he would instruct his attorney general to appoint a special prosecutor to look into situation of candidate Clinton. Later as Clinton said the people should be glad that Trump wasn’t in charge of the laws, Trump quipped ‘because you’d be in jail.’
During MSNBC’s post debate coverage, Joy Reid said that this reminded her of stories her father told her about the Democratic Republic of Congo. Saying the threat to jail a political opponent was something you’d expect in the third world and not the USA among several things.
I agree that there are things in this election that I expected to see in the third world but disagree that what Trump said was part of it. What’s happening is unprecedented in many ways. Imagine what would happen in a 3rd world country to someone who went to a rally wearing a shirt declaring that the candidates spouse is a rapist? Do you imagine they would just be ushered out of the premises? The levels of criticism, whether true or false levied at the candidates is incomparable to any I can think of.
I will admit to having worried before sharing, publishing or saying certain things. For surely the powers that be have people watching ready to deal with any detractors, when will that proverbial knock on the door come, it’s not like they can’t find out where you live… but nope freedom of speech.
Only in America.
Several links below of that do inspirational and great work on the topics at hand. I implore you to click the links and listen to what they have to say. Even if not immediately but as soon as possible. Make time. Whether intending and/or able to vote, American or not. Information is good to have and what is going on will affect you in some way whether you know of it or not. Links and descriptions followed by the actual videos.
- The Truth About Hillary Clinton’s Wall Street Speeches
Details about the some of the 729 paid speeches Bill and Hillary Clinton made between 2001 and 2015 earning more than $153 million.
- The Truth About The Hillary Clinton Wikileaks Scandal
Having public and private opinions is somehtign most of us are familiar with. You are unlikely to share your full beliefs on religion wiht the cashier at a fast food restaurant, but your private beliefs likely wont directly effect their life. When it comes to a public servant if they say they’ll do one thing yet privately plan another, it behooves the voter to know what they support.
- RIGHT ANGLE: JULIAN ASSANGE – HERO? VILLAIN? BOTH? Does anyone really care about what is in those emails? After the pre-debate Wikifizzle, Bill Whittle asks Stephen Green and Scott Ott discuss.
- RIGHT ANGLE: AFTER THE ELECTION
An excellent discussion on what could happen after the election. I have said that if this is a film were are in the pre-title credits scene and the election will be the beginning of the title credits. Listing the main characters.
Really watch the movie “The Road” if you haven’t yet.