I am used to people telling partial truths, massaging statistics, spinning, taking anecdotal evidence out of context, and all of the other tricks necessary to make things like trickle-down economics and Intelligent Design sound plausible. It comes with the territory for those of us who choose to follow politics. But there is nothing lazier, more damaging, or less intellectually honest than a constantly variable weight that gives different values to the same information at different points in time. In the case of the poll data and unemployment statistics this phenomenon is stretched to the limit – when the data do not confirm your preconceived idea of the world around you, they must be fabricated. Yep. Anything that contradicts your belief system is made up.
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Such people are, in an intellectual if not literal sense, brain dead. They're not processing any new information except to sift it through the filter of their beliefs and reject anything that doesn't fit. Yet at the same time, and at a more basic level, they seem incapable of believing anything. Do the polls matter, or are they made up? Does the unemployment rate measure the health of the economy, or is it politically manipulated? Are the troops being removed from the Middle East too soon, or not soon enough? If the answer to any of these questions is "It depends on who's winning / who's in power", congratulations. You're what's wrong with America. This is why we can't have nice things, like a half decent debate about our problems and how we might go about solving them.
Ed, at Gin And Tacos