The Election Scissors

Stepping, even hesitantly, into this presidential election is like putting yourself inside of a pair of scissors. Or kissing the 3rd rail, pick your metaphor. Anyway, here are some interesting facts and studies relevant to this season, if anybody cares about such things anymore.

Stepping, even hesitantly, into this presidential election is like putting yourself inside of a pair of scissors. Or kissing the 3rd rail, pick your metaphor. Anyway, here are some interesting facts and studies relevant to this season, if anybody cares about such things anymore.

58% of Americans currently approve of President Obama’s performance, according to the Washington Post, although you couldn’t tell listening to some media.

The average cost of health coverage for an employee this year rose to an amazing $18,142, per The Wall Street Journal. Why isn’t this critical topic in the mix?

The number of American households with more than $5 million in investible assets has crossed the 1 million mark for the first time. And there are almost 7 million millionaires now, reports Barrons. Emblematic of rising, unequal wealth.

A study by Nathan Brooks found that of 261 senior executives examined, roughly 1 in 5 fit the psychological profile of a psychopath - the same ratio found among prison inmates! “Typical psychopaths create a lot of chaos and tend to play people off each other.” Further, Daylian Cain, a psychologist at Yale, has found that “People are just not good at being objective about their own conflicts of interest. Whatever side of an issue that we are on, we can easily convince ourselves that we are on the right side.” Candidates and voters alike, it seems.

Professor Adam Galinsky of Northwestern University has found that “Power allows people to focus on their own internal goals, blinding them in the process to how others view them.” Dana Carney, a psychologist at Columbia University, has learned that “Acquiring power makes people more comfortable committing acts that they might otherwise be reluctant to commit, like lying and cheating.” Does someone come to mind?

As to debating, David Foster Wallace once said to The Guardian that “If you are more interested in what you are saying than what the person listening to you is, you are the definition of boring.”

Or how about Thomas Mann, “It is a strange fact that freedom and equality, the two basic ideas of democracy, are to some extent contradictory.”

Even football, our other fall passion, has something to say pertinent to our election; Bum Phillips, the former coach, said “You fail all the time, but you aren’t a (real) failure until you start blaming someone else.”

Those are my principles and if you don’t like them, I have others.” - Groucho Marx

Lastly, here is some Presidential wisdom from Harry Truman that all politicians today should make their mantra; “You can accomplish anything in life, provided that you do not mind who gets the credit.”