The Fickle American Electorate

More evidence of a fairly recent historical phenomenon: voters don’t trust anyone for any length of time.

This is partially the cost of extreme cynicism in our political system, but you could see it in the lead up to the midterm elections.

I wasn’t surprised at all to see people moving into the tea party, anti-Obama camp towards the midterms because people don’t stay with any one person or party. Some commentators said that people were “rejecting” Obama or “moving away from socialism” or whatever. But the truth of the matter — and a truth no one really seems comfortable to talk about — is just that people don’t trust anyone, and so there’s a surge of expectations when the news guys come in, and then an erosion of that trust and hope very shortly thereafter.

Just MONTHS after the tea parties and republicans claimed that they had a mandate or an indication from the people that they needed to tackle spending, or whatever, we see things going right back to the way they were — no one trusting anything.

(my constant caveat: this has nothing to do with the republicans being the ones losing this time. It was the democrats last time and it will be both parties again in due time.)

I don’t blame people given the lack of courage that our politicians display, but we have to combat this sporadic disengagement and then reengagement with politics, because it makes solving hard issues, a process that anyone with common sense knows takes sustained application to the task, impossible.


1 Response to “The Fickle American Electorate”

  1. March 18, 2011 at 10:29 pm

    I think the explanation’s pretty obvious: the economy has sucked (especially for the middle class) for a long time and no one in DC has any answer for how to fix it. So Americans get their hopes out that the new boss in charge can fix the Third World levels of economic stratification that are occurring here, and when they find out that the new boss is the same as the old, they tune out.

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