No. of Recommendations: 14
"Ummm, I think you've actually touched on the essence of the problem.

We'll always have significant differences in how people approach problems, but until we return to having a substantial overlap of news sources that inform us all, I don't think we'll ever return to a time that we can work together."


Yep.

As long as there are people that believe in things (important, relevant things) that are simply not true, there is no basis to work together. Imagine you are an engineer and you have to work with another engineer to build a bridge. However this other engineer believes that 2 + 2 = 5 and that concrete weighs less than air. There is no way that you are going to be able to work with them to build a structurally sound bridge.

As long as people choose to believe in crazy political things that are false (such as the Uranium One nonsense posted in the thread above) then there is no basis to work together politically to get necessary things done.

It is really unfortunate as well, because a democracy requires an informed electorate. In a democracy the power is held by the masses. If those masses choose to be ill informed, a democracy does not work as only liars, cheats, and con men will get elected.

"There's just no "basis of reality" to start from anymore. It seems to me to have disappeared shortly after the Fairness Doctrine was repealed, although I don't know if that really caused it."

I don't know. When I was a child in the 1970's and early 80's I remember going to the grocery store with my mother and seeing the supermarkets rags like "The National Enquirer" and such (Elvis is alive pumping gas in Michigan! Bigfoot was spotted in the forest just outside Seattle!). I always wondered who bought crap like that and who was naïve enough believe such stories. Someone was buying those magazines though.

I think there is a lot of overlap between people who bought The National Enquirer and people who believed Obama was a Muslim who was born in Kenya. Unfortunately there is a decent size portion of the population who simply lack the basic ability to discern fact from falsehood when it is a subject outside their expertise.
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