• This is a political forum that is non-biased/non-partisan and treats every person's position on topics equally. This debate forum is not aligned to any political party. In today's politics, many ideas are split between and even within all the political parties. Often we find ourselves agreeing on one platform but some topics break our mold. We are here to discuss them in a civil political debate. If this is your first visit to our political forums, be sure to check out the RULES. Registering for debate politics is necessary before posting. Register today to participate - it's free!

Why don't people know what is in the bills and laws that they hate?

CriticalThought

DP Veteran
Joined
Jun 11, 2009
Messages
19,657
Reaction score
8,454
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Libertarian
I have noticed a rather annoying thing with most people who have strong political opinions on legislation and that is they seem to have very little idea what they are talking about.

Case in point, I was talking to a friend who opposes the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) and they were very clear that they hated it and thought it was pure socialism. Just out of curiosity, I proposed an alternative idea, which really was not an alternative, but just a description of what the bill actually does, and my friend thought it was brilliant. That seems ridiculous to me. People form strong opinions on legislation without really having any clear idea of what it does. People seem to love the talking points repeated incessantly by the media and the politicians but nobody seems to take the time to do a little research themselves on what the legislation actually does or will do.

Another case is immigration reform. I've asked people who oppose it how long they think it takes to become a citizen and what steps people have to go through and they simply do not know. I ask what the currently proposed ideas for reform are and some think that the plan is to give full citizenship to illegal immigrants without any sort of process or wait whatsoever. They know that they oppose the current proposals for reform but do not know what is in the reforms. And once again I can play the card of simply describing what the reform proposals actually are and people generally agree that they are reasonable and that is what they politicians should be doing (even though that is what they currently are doing).

I personally think if someone went around and tested people on their knowledge of the legislation they oppose the vast majority would probably fail miserably. I am not asking that people support the legislation. I am asking that they at least have a basic knowledge of it and can explain why they oppose it in reasonable terms. I have gotten to the point where I just poke fun at people without them even knowing it by getting them to unkowning support the very bills and laws they ardently claim to oppose. Isn't that kind of messed up?
 

MaggieD

DP Veteran
Joined
Jul 9, 2010
Messages
43,244
Reaction score
44,663
Location
Chicago Area
Gender
Female
Political Leaning
Moderate
I personally think if someone went around and tested people on their knowledge of the legislation they oppose the vast majority would probably fail miserably. I am not asking that people support the legislation. I am asking that they at least have a basic knowledge of it and can explain why they oppose it in reasonable terms. I have gotten to the point where I just poke fun at people without them even knowing it by getting them to unkowning support the very bills and laws they ardently claim to oppose. Isn't that kind of messed up?

Hell, there's people walking around who don't even know the capital of Washington, DC -- much less what's in complicated legislation. Our congressmen didn't even know.
 

CriticalThought

DP Veteran
Joined
Jun 11, 2009
Messages
19,657
Reaction score
8,454
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Libertarian
Hell, there's people walking around who don't even know the capital of Washington, DC -- much less what's in complicated legislation. Our congressmen didn't even know.

I'm not asking that they know the ins and outs. They should at least have a broad understanding of what it does. If they are going to ardently oppose things then they should probably know what they are opposing. It is the combination of certainty that something is bad with the utter lack of knowledge about that something that I find rather irritating. I should not be able to easily manipulate people into supporting the very policies they claim to despise. That scares me.
 

Spartacus FPV

Better You = Better World
DP Veteran
Joined
Apr 19, 2006
Messages
14,870
Reaction score
7,127
Location
Your Echochamber
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Other
I'm opposed to it because I believe it will increase costs, making single payer inevitable. I'll admit to not knowing everything in the bill, haven't read it word for word, don't need to IMO; a basic understanding is enough.

Call me ignorant if you'd like, but I don't need to be the weather man to tell you its raining.
 

Republic Now!

DP Veteran
Joined
Feb 3, 2012
Messages
2,671
Reaction score
1,075
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Conservative
I agree, people should be more knowledgeable about the legislation our Government is working with. I think the most practical place to start with this education are the legislators who vote on it.
 

CriticalThought

DP Veteran
Joined
Jun 11, 2009
Messages
19,657
Reaction score
8,454
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Libertarian
I'm opposed to it because I believe it will increase costs, making single payer inevitable. I'll admit to not knowing everything in the bill, haven't read it word for word, don't need to IMO; a basic understanding is enough.

Call me ignorant if you'd like, but I don't need to be the weather man to tell you its raining.

I don't care if you support or oppose it. I don't care if you have an in depth understanding of the law. Can you, in a single sentence, describe what Obamacare actually does?
 

Slyfox696

DP Veteran
Joined
Mar 8, 2013
Messages
14,688
Reaction score
11,884
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Moderate
I have noticed a rather annoying thing with most people who have strong political opinions on legislation and that is they seem to have very little idea what they are talking about.
Because it is so much easier to be told what to think than to actually investigate the truth of what you hear. We all do it, for various things. Maybe you don't for politics (and I try not to either), but everyone does it for something.
 

CriticalThought

DP Veteran
Joined
Jun 11, 2009
Messages
19,657
Reaction score
8,454
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Libertarian
I agree, people should be more knowledgeable about the legislation our Government is working with. I think the most practical place to start with this education are the legislators who vote on it.

They are incentivized to not know. Think about it. A politician that knows what they are voting on might have their own opinion or objections. What if their opinions differ from their constituents? What if they happen to understand the bill better than their constituents do? If that is the case, then acting on their understanding will allow opponents a chance to point out how they acted outside the wishes of the constituents. They may lose their next election. Just going with the crowd and parroting popular talking points and rhetoric that don't really address the substance of the bill is the safe way to go. It is better to know how to vote so you can get reelected, not to try to understand the substance of what you are actually voting for or what exactly it does.
 

Republic Now!

DP Veteran
Joined
Feb 3, 2012
Messages
2,671
Reaction score
1,075
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Conservative
They are incentivized to not know. Think about it. A politician that knows what they are voting on might have their own opinion or objections. What if their opinions differ from their constituents? What if they happen to understand the bill better than their constituents do? If that is the case, then acting on their understanding will allow opponents a chance to point out how they acted outside the wishes of the constituents. They may lose their next election. Just going with the crowd and parroting popular talking points and rhetoric that don't really address the substance of the bill is the safe way to go. It is better to know how to vote so you can get reelected, not to try to understand the substance of what you are actually voting for or what exactly it does.

Most votes aren't made on the basis of policy but politics, whether that be elections or backroom deals.
 

ttwtt78640

Sometimes wrong
DP Veteran
Joined
May 22, 2012
Messages
89,873
Reaction score
53,585
Location
Uhland, Texas
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Libertarian
I don't care if you support or oppose it. I don't care if you have an in depth understanding of the law. Can you, in a single sentence, describe what Obamacare actually does?

Even Obama can't do that! ;)
 

Spartacus FPV

Better You = Better World
DP Veteran
Joined
Apr 19, 2006
Messages
14,870
Reaction score
7,127
Location
Your Echochamber
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Other
I don't care if you support or oppose it. I don't care if you have an in depth understanding of the law. Can you, in a single sentence, describe what Obamacare actually does?

Only one? I'll try... Its an attempt to reduce costs by forcing economies of scale but also subsidizes packages for the people with low income (& smaller businesses) and is guaranteed despite most pre-existing conditions.
 

CriticalThought

DP Veteran
Joined
Jun 11, 2009
Messages
19,657
Reaction score
8,454
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Libertarian
Most votes aren't made on the basis of policy but politics, whether that be elections or backroom deals.

"All propaganda has to be popular and has to accommodate itself to the comprehension of the least intelligent of those whom it seeks to reach." -Adolf Hitler

I still think the bigger problem is with the populace, but maybe it is just human nature. I thought that with the rapid spreading of information that is afforded by the internet that the masses would be better informed but it seems that we just have a better vehicle to disseminate propaganda and vitriolic rhetoric that is all the better designed to play on the passions and prejudices of the people.
 

ttwtt78640

Sometimes wrong
DP Veteran
Joined
May 22, 2012
Messages
89,873
Reaction score
53,585
Location
Uhland, Texas
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Libertarian
I have noticed a rather annoying thing with most people who have strong political opinions on legislation and that is they seem to have very little idea what they are talking about.

Case in point, I was talking to a friend who opposes the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) and they were very clear that they hated it and thought it was pure socialism. Just out of curiosity, I proposed an alternative idea, which really was not an alternative, but just a description of what the bill actually does, and my friend thought it was brilliant. That seems ridiculous to me. People form strong opinions on legislation without really having any clear idea of what it does. People seem to love the talking points repeated incessantly by the media and the politicians but nobody seems to take the time to do a little research themselves on what the legislation actually does or will do.

Another case is immigration reform. I've asked people who oppose it how long they think it takes to become a citizen and what steps people have to go through and they simply do not know. I ask what the currently proposed ideas for reform are and some think that the plan is to give full citizenship to illegal immigrants without any sort of process or wait whatsoever. They know that they oppose the current proposals for reform but do not know what is in the reforms. And once again I can play the card of simply describing what the reform proposals actually are and people generally agree that they are reasonable and that is what they politicians should be doing (even though that is what they currently are doing).

I personally think if someone went around and tested people on their knowledge of the legislation they oppose the vast majority would probably fail miserably. I am not asking that people support the legislation. I am asking that they at least have a basic knowledge of it and can explain why they oppose it in reasonable terms. I have gotten to the point where I just poke fun at people without them even knowing it by getting them to unkowning support the very bills and laws they ardently claim to oppose. Isn't that kind of messed up?

How many know that the "farm bill" is 80% income redistribution via SNAP?

Why The Farm Bill's Provisions Will Matter To You : NPR
 

CriticalThought

DP Veteran
Joined
Jun 11, 2009
Messages
19,657
Reaction score
8,454
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Libertarian
Only one? I'll try... Its an attempt to reduce costs by forcing economies of scale but also subsidizes packages for the people with low income (& smaller businesses) and is guaranteed despite most pre-existing conditions.

Congrats. You are a part of the minority.
 

Ontologuy

DP Veteran
Joined
Oct 18, 2011
Messages
6,715
Reaction score
1,911
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Centrist
I have noticed a rather annoying thing with most people who have strong political opinions on legislation and that is they seem to have very little idea what they are talking about.

Case in point, I was talking to a friend who opposes the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) and they were very clear that they hated it and thought it was pure socialism. Just out of curiosity, I proposed an alternative idea, which really was not an alternative, but just a description of what the bill actually does, and my friend thought it was brilliant. That seems ridiculous to me. People form strong opinions on legislation without really having any clear idea of what it does. People seem to love the talking points repeated incessantly by the media and the politicians but nobody seems to take the time to do a little research themselves on what the legislation actually does or will do.

Another case is immigration reform. I've asked people who oppose it how long they think it takes to become a citizen and what steps people have to go through and they simply do not know. I ask what the currently proposed ideas for reform are and some think that the plan is to give full citizenship to illegal immigrants without any sort of process or wait whatsoever. They know that they oppose the current proposals for reform but do not know what is in the reforms. And once again I can play the card of simply describing what the reform proposals actually are and people generally agree that they are reasonable and that is what they politicians should be doing (even though that is what they currently are doing).

I personally think if someone went around and tested people on their knowledge of the legislation they oppose the vast majority would probably fail miserably. I am not asking that people support the legislation. I am asking that they at least have a basic knowledge of it and can explain why they oppose it in reasonable terms. I have gotten to the point where I just poke fun at people without them even knowing it by getting them to unkowning support the very bills and laws they ardently claim to oppose. Isn't that kind of messed up?
Though your premise is true, that people generally don't know the details of a bill and for the good reason that bills are voluminous and complex, your specific conclusion that if you explain the details of the "immigration" bill (read: amnesty and legalization bill) "people generally agree that they are reasonable" is a complete farce on your part.

The great majority of American citizens are opposed to the amnesty and legalization bill when they know the relevant details of the bill, how it is an egregious injustice to their fellow American citizens in so very many ways and how it will cripple the economy by causing wage scales to tumble and exacerbate overcrowding and scarcity of American resources.

Same with Obamacare -- when people are informed, they know it's a big loser for most people, as the recent compelled need to delay the corporate requirement to purchase healthcare insurance for employees and Boehner's imploring Obama to also realize the mistake in not making the same delay available to individuals so they won't get tax penalized also attests.

Your thread here is merely your slick way of stumping for your ideological favorite bills of the moment, and by providing false information to do so.

Nothing more.
 

CriticalThought

DP Veteran
Joined
Jun 11, 2009
Messages
19,657
Reaction score
8,454
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Libertarian
Though your premise is true, that people generally don't know the details of a bill and for the good reason that bills are voluminous and complex, your specific conclusion that if you explain the details of the "immigration" bill (read: amnesty and legalization bill) "people generally agree that they are reasonable" is a complete farce on your part.

The great majority of American citizens are opposed to the amnesty and legalization bill when they know the relevant details of the bill, how it is an egregious injustice to their fellow American citizens in so very many ways and how it will cripple the economy by causing wage scales to tumble and exacerbate overcrowding and scarcity of American resources.

Same with Obamacare -- when people are informed, they know it's a big loser for most people, as the recent compelled need to delay the corporate requirement to purchase healthcare insurance for employees and Boehner's imploring Obama to also realize the mistake in not making the same delay available to individuals so they won't get tax penalized also attests.

Your thread here is merely your slick way of stumping for your ideological favorite bills of the moment, and by providing false information to do so.

Nothing more.

I don't really care whether you oppose or support the immigration reforms. The real question is, without the rhetoric and buzzwords, can you concretely state what the current proposals actually are in a single sentence?

I hear interpretations, evaluations, speculation, and predictions, but very few people actually state what the proposals are, which leads me to suspect they don't know.

And also, I don't think the people I personally asked about immigration reform are a representative national poll on the topic. Just to be clear. It seems you seem to think I conducted one or something.
 
Last edited:

ttwtt78640

Sometimes wrong
DP Veteran
Joined
May 22, 2012
Messages
89,873
Reaction score
53,585
Location
Uhland, Texas
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Libertarian
He does a better job than most. I would even take "federal subsidization of private insurance" as an answer.

"Federal control and subsidization of the medical insurance market" is much more accurate. How is insurance still "private" if the gov't sets what must (and may not) be covered by any "gov't approved" plan, how premium rates may (and may not) be set, how much overhead (including profit) may be included and that everyone in the country must buy (or have given to them) that "gov't approved" product or pay a fine.
 
Last edited:

CriticalThought

DP Veteran
Joined
Jun 11, 2009
Messages
19,657
Reaction score
8,454
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Libertarian
"Federal control and subsidization of the medical insurance market" is much more accurate. How is insurance still "private" if the gov't sets what must (and may not) be covered by any "gov't approved" plan, how premium rates may (and may not) be set, how much overhead (including profit) may be included and that every one in the country must buy that "gov't approved" product or pay a fine.

That is a philosophical question because how is anything private when it has any degree of government regulation? How is a business private if you need a license to own and operate one? You can take the line of reasoning to the extreme if you want to do so. However, this thread isn't about whether or not Obamacare is a good idea, which I think most people feel it is not, but whether or not people know what it does.
 

AGENT J

"If you ain't first, you're last"
Supporting Member
DP Veteran
Monthly Donator
Joined
Apr 25, 2010
Messages
76,598
Reaction score
26,109
Location
Pittsburgh
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Independent
I have noticed a rather annoying thing with most people who have strong political opinions on legislation and that is they seem to have very little idea what they are talking about.

Case in point, I was talking to a friend who opposes the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) and they were very clear that they hated it and thought it was pure socialism. Just out of curiosity, I proposed an alternative idea, which really was not an alternative, but just a description of what the bill actually does, and my friend thought it was brilliant. That seems ridiculous to me. People form strong opinions on legislation without really having any clear idea of what it does. People seem to love the talking points repeated incessantly by the media and the politicians but nobody seems to take the time to do a little research themselves on what the legislation actually does or will do.

Another case is immigration reform. I've asked people who oppose it how long they think it takes to become a citizen and what steps people have to go through and they simply do not know. I ask what the currently proposed ideas for reform are and some think that the plan is to give full citizenship to illegal immigrants without any sort of process or wait whatsoever. They know that they oppose the current proposals for reform but do not know what is in the reforms. And once again I can play the card of simply describing what the reform proposals actually are and people generally agree that they are reasonable and that is what they politicians should be doing (even though that is what they currently are doing).

I personally think if someone went around and tested people on their knowledge of the legislation they oppose the vast majority would probably fail miserably. I am not asking that people support the legislation. I am asking that they at least have a basic knowledge of it and can explain why they oppose it in reasonable terms. I have gotten to the point where I just poke fun at people without them even knowing it by getting them to unkowning support the very bills and laws they ardently claim to oppose. Isn't that kind of messed up?

great question and observation

the answer is simple, a lot of people don't actually care about truth or reality or being objective

everything is a their side vs the other side thing

why read the bill when its easier to just attack and be a blind partisan idiot
 

Ontologuy

DP Veteran
Joined
Oct 18, 2011
Messages
6,715
Reaction score
1,911
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Centrist
I don't really care whether you oppose or support the immigration reforms. The real question is, without the rhetoric and buzzwords, can you concretely state what the current proposals actually are in a single sentence?
The bill is not an "immigration reform" bill, but an amnesty and legalization bill for 20 million trespassing and thieving illegals, that comes at the injustice expense of millions of Americans from whom they stole jobs, classrooms, living space, road space, medical facilities, etc., etc., etc.

There, that's the one-sentence straight truth about the bill that Boehner rightly killed.

Though your ideology will compel you to erroneously state "it's nothing but rhetoric and buzzwords", it remains the fact-based truth about the bill.

Oh, and you clearly do care about the bill, you'd prefer everyone supports it, obviously.


I hear interpretations, evaluations, speculation, and predictions, but very few people actually state what the proposals are, which leads me to suspect they don't know.
Many people who've been subjected to the media bias and the vote-pandering rationalizations in D.C. are naturally confused about the bill.

Hopefully some of them will pass this way and my posts will make it clear to them just what is at stake here.


And also, I don't think the people I personally asked about immigration reform are a representative national poll on the topic. Just to be clear. It seems you seem to think I conducted one or something.
Your "seeming" here is disengenuous.

I called you on your purposeful slick way of falsely implying that "once people understand the bill they support it".

:roll:
 

ttwtt78640

Sometimes wrong
DP Veteran
Joined
May 22, 2012
Messages
89,873
Reaction score
53,585
Location
Uhland, Texas
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Libertarian
I don't really care whether you oppose or support the immigration reforms. The real question is, without the rhetoric and buzzwords, can you concretely state what the current proposals actually are in a single sentence?

I hear interpretations, evaluations, speculation, and predictions, but very few people actually state what the proposals are, which leads me to suspect they don't know.

And also, I don't think the people I personally asked about immigration reform are a representative national poll on the topic. Just to be clear. It seems you seem to think I conducted one or something.

PPACA, or ObamaCare, is a mess of many thousands of pages, involving multiple gov't departments and agencies, many of which are still being cobbled together in phases (subject to change based on "infrastructure difficulties" and "limitted resources") and "evolving" new details of the program as we speak.

To assert that a brief summary is all that matters is simply insane. This PPACA bill was crammed full of exceptions, modifications and waivers. A major component, madatory Medicaid elegibility expansion, was dropped (stricken by the SCOTUS) meaning that single people that earn less than will get them any PPACA benefits are still left with no medical insurance, public or private. Medical care providers are not required to accept these "exchange plan" patients, just as they are not required to accept Medicaid, CHIP or Medicare patients now.
 

Republic Now!

DP Veteran
Joined
Feb 3, 2012
Messages
2,671
Reaction score
1,075
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Conservative
"All propaganda has to be popular and has to accommodate itself to the comprehension of the least intelligent of those whom it seeks to reach." -Adolf Hitler

I still think the bigger problem is with the populace, but maybe it is just human nature. I thought that with the rapid spreading of information that is afforded by the internet that the masses would be better informed but it seems that we just have a better vehicle to disseminate propaganda and vitriolic rhetoric that is all the better designed to play on the passions and prejudices of the people.

The problem with the internet is that it simple supplies blind information. People need to develop an innate skepticism and also a curiosity for the truth. Sadly, that change would require much more than the internet provides.
 

Fisher

DP Veteran
Joined
Sep 18, 2012
Messages
17,002
Reaction score
6,913
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Very Liberal
I have noticed a rather annoying thing with most people who have strong political opinions on legislation and that is they seem to have very little idea what they are talking about.

Case in point, I was talking to a friend who opposes the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) and they were very clear that they hated it and thought it was pure socialism. Just out of curiosity, I proposed an alternative idea, which really was not an alternative, but just a description of what the bill actually does, and my friend thought it was brilliant. That seems ridiculous to me. People form strong opinions on legislation without really having any clear idea of what it does. People seem to love the talking points repeated incessantly by the media and the politicians but nobody seems to take the time to do a little research themselves on what the legislation actually does or will do.

Another case is immigration reform. I've asked people who oppose it how long they think it takes to become a citizen and what steps people have to go through and they simply do not know. I ask what the currently proposed ideas for reform are and some think that the plan is to give full citizenship to illegal immigrants without any sort of process or wait whatsoever. They know that they oppose the current proposals for reform but do not know what is in the reforms. And once again I can play the card of simply describing what the reform proposals actually are and people generally agree that they are reasonable and that is what they politicians should be doing (even though that is what they currently are doing).

I personally think if someone went around and tested people on their knowledge of the legislation they oppose the vast majority would probably fail miserably. I am not asking that people support the legislation. I am asking that they at least have a basic knowledge of it and can explain why they oppose it in reasonable terms. I have gotten to the point where I just poke fun at people without them even knowing it by getting them to unkowning support the very bills and laws they ardently claim to oppose. Isn't that kind of messed up?

Did you tell them that they would be fined if they didn't have this insurance or that they may lose their job or have their hours cut to get it, or that they may have to be paying for their insurance as well as other people's insurance depending on their circumstances?
 

Spartacus FPV

Better You = Better World
DP Veteran
Joined
Apr 19, 2006
Messages
14,870
Reaction score
7,127
Location
Your Echochamber
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Other
The problem with the internet is that it simple supplies blind information. People need to develop an innate skepticism and also a curiosity for the truth. Sadly, that change would require much more than the internet provides.

I recommend this list of the most common logical fallacies as well as this article for developing a healthy level of skepticism, a capacity for debate and the ability to entertain an thought without accepting it.

IMO it should be mandatory reading for DP members.
 
Top Bottom