Friday, March 6, 2009

The Problems with Pundits

I try not to blog my politics. There's a hundred better-informed political blogs out there. However, the pundit problem is starting to piss me off. I see a lot of people blindly accepting their conclusions, then repeating those views on message boards and in conversations.

There are several problems with this.

1) First and foremost, no one should take what anyone says without thinking about it. This is so basic that it should be obvious.

2) No pundit has ever had to compromise with another lawmaking body. Democratic laws are made by compromise. A pundit never has to worry about what the members of other branches of the government have to say about it. The majority of their proclamations are unusable for this reason.

3) Hypothetical enactments never run into unintended consequences. When Idi Amin Dada (yes, I'm comparing the average ego-bloated pundit with a mass-murdering dictator with a massively overinflated ego. Often, I feel the difference between the two is opportunity) threw all the Asians out of Uganda, it seemed like a great idea to him. However, he didn't realize he'd gotten rid of his country's middle class, which was disastrous for the economy. Ooops. Since pundit proclamations never have to deal with reality, their hypothetical solutions never have unforeseen consequences.


The Beast said...

Like most people in the media, the pundit's main job is to entertain. Unfortunately, that means rational thought and discussion often get shoved out of the way. I don't blame the pundits (much), I blame the lazy/stupid people who watch these guys and swallow whatever they say.

John Goodrich said...

I just wish that more people understood that first sentence, Beast. People are looking for easy answers to complex problems, and pundits give them solutions that are quick, easy and wrong.