11 October 2012

Facty Facts

I Love, with a capital "L," that this has become the fact checking election.  I think that this is a point that really matters in our development as educated voters.  For the first time in what feel like forever people are saying "hey, do you reckon that is true." 

Ironically in this information age, we (to mean people as a herd) seem to take a lot at face value.  It is almost as if the internet that should be providing us with endless access to the data behind everything has served only as a catalyst to make people over confident in their belief that whatever their icons tell them is true.  After all, you wouldn't just put it on the internet if it wasn't 100% true right? I mean why use the wealth of available information to learn something and make an educated decision when the "Obama steals your LEGO for the kids who were napping" meme tells you everything you need to know about why socialism is bad. 

I am a fact checker by nature.  Maybe it is my preference for science that makes me check the research, maybe I am just that driven to always be right...not really sure.  Regardless, I often feel like I can't take the facts tossed out in an election year at face value.  Let me read that study or see that math before I agree to this plan.  The answers I reach from this may not be unequivocally correct, or the best answers possible, but I can truly say that I get why I made that choice. 

It gives me a real warm fuzzy to see this happening everywhere, by everyone on all sides of the equation. Do single payer health care systems create better long term health outcomes?  Does closing women's health clinics decrease the number of women who die from botched procedures?  Can we cut taxes and build 15 new Navy ships in a year?  These are all questions that need to be asked.  Sure all these plans, ideas and platforms sound great, but do the facts and numbers indicate they are viable plans, ideas and platforms?

Maybe no one has the perfect answer to all our problems, but at least we are asking our pitiful candidate pool to prove why they could do a good job. As easy as it would be have Glenn Beck or Rachel Maddow makes all these choices for us, a little research can easily show you what is really going on.  Now your choice is your own and therein lies the power of your vote.  Please show me how this will work and if it checks, you can have my vote.  Seems like a fair exchange right?