Thursday, May 31, 2007

Canceling Each Other Out

It's been a while since I took math in school, but I can remember the sheer delight and sense of "rightness" I had when I was first taught the idea of things canceling each other out. I thought it so cool -- I could simplify a seemingly complex equation by taking away things that were on both sides. As I remember this principle--and remember that it has been a while--it's that if it was on both sides it wasn't really important to the equation at hand and could be lopped off without making any real difference. And by simplifying the equation by removing the extraneous "noise" you could focus in on the real heart of the problem.

I was thinking about this recently while listening to Rush Linbaugh. He was bemoaning the Democratic/Liberal practice of sending out "talking points" to all of the liberal media outlets and talking heads so that there was a lock step presentation of a single perspective. (A perspective, by the way, which was crafted in weekly phone conferences with leftist environmental whackos.) He played clips from various news broadcasts and, sure enough, the same words being used over and over again.

Of course, when I was up in Maine and could get Air America Radio, Al Franken and others made the exact same claim about Republican/Conservatives. (Except that their talking points were crafted in weekly phone conferences with conservative religious wackos.) They showed the same rather convincing evidence.

So what do you say, guys? Can't we agree that these arguments cancel each other out? Wouldn't it be great if Republicans and Democrats (or Liberals and Conservatives, if you prefer) would stop accusing each other of doing the same thing they're being accused of doing? Stop talking about these things or, better yet stop doing these things! Then, maybe, we could focus our attention in on the heart of the problem.

In Gassho,

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