What You Need to Know About Politics

I’m going to hit you with something, and I want you to know… it’s the cold hard truth. Politics, in their raw form, are relentless. Politicians and their campaign staff will go the distance to get re-elected. This isn’t a Republican idea. This isn’t a Democratic idea. This is THE idea, and it will remain the idea until citizens like you and me change it.

The current recall elections are giving political junkies like myself reason to be excited. More elections. More TV ads. More debates. But, what does this mean for people less inclined to enjoying politics? The exact same thing. More elections. More TV ads. More debates. We all get to see it. We now see Republicans touting Governor Walker’s recently announced “tremendous” job growth of 23,000 jobs in 2011–and 10,000 already in 2012. Then, we see Democrats selling an idea backed by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics that Walker lost the state 23,900 jobs in 2011–the most of any state across the nation. Who do we believe?

Well, Albert Einstein said it best–  “If the facts don’t confirm your theory, change your facts.” Now, of course, it’s important to realize that Einstein said this in a joking matter. But sadly, today, we see politicians following this idea quite closely. It’s a disturbing time, politically.

So, who do we believe? It’s a tough call. But it’s explainable: people believe what they want to believe.

“We are like the ancient astronomers and actively seek out only that information that confirms our beliefs and theories about ourselves and the world. Religious people see evidence of God’s handiwork everywhere; whereas, atheists see evidence of the absence of God everywhere. Conservatives see the evils of liberalism everywhere and liberals see the evils of conservatism everywhere. In fact, you do not need to watch and listen to either Fox or MSNBC because you already know what their position will be on any given political issue,” says Michael Michalko, an author of numerous ‘creative thinking’ books, in an article entitled Einstein’s Insight into Human Nature.

Now, what exactly is happening in those ads that are telling us two different things? Did Wisconsin lose 3o,ooo jobs, or, did Wisconsin gain 30,000?

Well, how you determine that is a question of where you get your facts. The Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development is the agency behind Walker’s numbers. These numbers are coming from approximately 160,000 Wisconsin employers, and say the state gained a tremendous amount of jobs. These numbers are often considered to be more accurate. However, it is extremely rare to have the type of discrepancy we see in these numbers compared to the already announced numbers. The difference of 57,000 jobs is unheard of. This is where you will find most people skeptical. How can the numbers be so different?

It’s a question of the ages. Will we ever know the CORRECT job numbers? Probably not. Will we ever know all the facts of the “John Doe” investigation? Probably not. I guess not knowing the truth in politics is becoming something we are all too often accepting. Maybe, just maybe, we should start wanting to know. Maybe, we should STRIVE to know. Once the electorate begins to hold their elected officials accountable, that’s when we’ll see our government produce results. Until then, we’ll just hear citizens complaining about corrupt politicians, and politicians complaining about the ‘other side’ being corrupt. It’s a crazy world we live in. Let’s do something to change it.