Credentials of pundits.

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#1 Posted by Mercenary848 (11214 posts) -

I just found out that Sean Hannity was never able to complete a college degree, so he has no formal higher education; but he sways millions of political opinions. Im someone who although I have finished undergrad and am entering grad school, don't believe you need a college degree to be an expert on a specific field.

What does everyone feel though that Americans are carrying the opinions of those who have no formal education on the things they speak on. Tomi Lahren has never studied sociology, Glenn Beck never went to college and spent most of his 20s as a substance abuse addict, Rush Limbaugh flunked out of college after two semesters to focus on radio. I just notice a lack of intellectual depth in these pundits

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#2 Posted by mattbbpl (15159 posts) -

One does not look to clowns for intellectual insight.

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#3 Edited by KittenNose (2304 posts) -

Why on earth would you need a college degree for a position in the media? Particularly when the bulk of it is just reading a script other people (hopefully) vet. These folks generally have mics in their ears feeding them information and instructions if they are ever on the air live. Pundits might as well be robots.

Besides, most of the media presenting information are not experts in the various fields they talk about. "Experts suggest" is all the support a claim needs to be true, assuming it supports the narrative of the targeted demographic. How on earth does a liberal arts or poly sci degree suddenly give the script they present more credibility? Heck, do they even have to know what poly sci means? If the voice in their ear knows, I see no reason to care.

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#4 Posted by KOD (2754 posts) -

@Mercenary848 said:

I just found out that Sean Hannity was never able to complete a college degree

Neither was Orwell.

Not suggesting the two should be compared, just saying you don't need a high education to be able to comprehend politics, power, economics, etc.

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#5 Posted by br0kenrabbit (15217 posts) -

@kod said:
@Mercenary848 said:

I just found out that Sean Hannity was never able to complete a college degree

Neither was Orwell.

Not suggesting the two should be compared, just saying you don't need a high education to be able to comprehend politics, power, economics, etc.

Well, the rights current ideology seems to be blackwhite.

A complete education isn't about quoting Adam Smith or Shakespeare, it's having a broad understanding of various issues both related and not. When you rely only on personal experience and anecdotes, you're never going to have a full understanding of the material.

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#6 Posted by KOD (2754 posts) -

@br0kenrabbit said:

Well, the rights current ideology seems to be blackwhite.

A complete education isn't about quoting Adam Smith or Shakespeare, it's having a broad understanding of various issues both related and not. When you rely only on personal experience and anecdotes, you're never going to have a full understanding of the material.

My point is you dont need an education to understand or be aware of these things and its probably not a good indicator of if a person is or is not capable of understanding political issues.

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#7 Edited by br0kenrabbit (15217 posts) -

@kod said:

My point is you dont need an education to understand or be aware of these things and its probably not a good indicator of if a person is or is not capable of understanding political issues.

The thing about educating yourself though is that you've got to be willing to study material that opposes your ideology as well. Just because you've read The Republic doesn't mean you shouldn't read The Communists Manifesto. Just because you've read The Communists Manifesto doesn't mean you understand the difference between Trotskyism and Marxism.

The point of structured education is to introduce you to a wide range of ideas, even those opposed to what you consider right and proper.

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#8 Edited by R3FURBISHED (12400 posts) -

@Mercenary848 said:

I just found out that Sean Hannity was never able to complete a college degree

I knew Hannity is a shitbag, but I didn't know he is an uneducated shitbag! What's his excuse anyways? Chaney went to Yale, Bannon went to Harvard, hell even Trump went to a private ivy league school.... all while Hannity went to St. Pius X Preparatory Seminary

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#9 Edited by KOD (2754 posts) -

@br0kenrabbit said:

The thing about educating yourself though is that you've got to be willing to study material that opposes your ideology as well. Just because you've read The Republic doesn't mean you shouldn't read The Communists Manifesto. Just because you've read The Communists Manifesto doesn't mean you understand the difference between Trotskyism and Marxism.

The point of structured education is to introduce you to a wide range of ideas, even those opposed to what you consider right and proper.

What percentage of Fox News, CNN, and MSNBC do you think are college educated? Like... 100%? Maybe 99%? Yet they do irreparable harm to our nation because of their limited scope. How about their viewers? 70%? Even Fox, Fox Business promotes the same economic nonsense as Fox News, except its for businessmen. These are college educated people who keep up with "current events" and yet, most likely know nothing of whats actually happening in the world or our own government.

Educated or not, its the type of person that matters. Are they curious enough to dive into other ideas? Are they capable of viewing things from others POV? etc. etc. etc.

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#10 Posted by Zaryia (3611 posts) -

Well Hannity in particular is a total dunce, so I'm not surprised.

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#11 Posted by Mercenary848 (11214 posts) -

It's just odd that the mere fact that these people are on TV, suddenly gives them clout over the actual experts on things like global warming, health care, etc.

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#12 Posted by Jacanuk (13065 posts) -

@Mercenary848 said:

I just found out that Sean Hannity was never able to complete a college degree, so he has no formal higher education; but he sways millions of political opinions. Im someone who although I have finished undergrad and am entering grad school, don't believe you need a college degree to be an expert on a specific field.

What does everyone feel though that Americans are carrying the opinions of those who have no formal education on the things they speak on. Tomi Lahren has never studied sociology, Glenn Beck never went to college and spent most of his 20s as a substance abuse addict, Rush Limbaugh flunked out of college after two semesters to focus on radio. I just notice a lack of intellectual depth in these pundits

Neither did Jobs or Gates.

I don't know what is worse, your lack of understanding that education does not equal intelligence or your lame attack on our first amendment.

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#13 Posted by comp_atkins (34682 posts) -

their credentials are the ability to spout constant streams of bullshit and ignore facts.

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#14 Posted by Jacanuk (13065 posts) -

@comp_atkins said:

their credentials are the ability to spout constant streams of bullshit and ignore facts.

You know a strange thing.

You don´t have to listen ;)

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#15 Edited by Zaryia (3611 posts) -

@Jacanuk said:
@Mercenary848 said:

I just found out that Sean Hannity was never able to complete a college degree, so he has no formal higher education; but he sways millions of political opinions. Im someone who although I have finished undergrad and am entering grad school, don't believe you need a college degree to be an expert on a specific field.

What does everyone feel though that Americans are carrying the opinions of those who have no formal education on the things they speak on. Tomi Lahren has never studied sociology, Glenn Beck never went to college and spent most of his 20s as a substance abuse addict, Rush Limbaugh flunked out of college after two semesters to focus on radio. I just notice a lack of intellectual depth in these pundits

Neither did Jobs or Gates.

I don't know what is worse, your lack of understanding that education does not equal intelligence or your lame attack on our first amendment.

He never attacked the first amendment in this post.

Are you high?

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#16 Posted by Zaryia (3611 posts) -

@Jacanuk said:
@comp_atkins said:

their credentials are the ability to spout constant streams of bullshit and ignore facts.

You don´t have to listen ;)

Deflection.

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#17 Posted by Jacanuk (13065 posts) -

@zaryia said:
@Jacanuk said:
@Mercenary848 said:

I just found out that Sean Hannity was never able to complete a college degree, so he has no formal higher education; but he sways millions of political opinions. Im someone who although I have finished undergrad and am entering grad school, don't believe you need a college degree to be an expert on a specific field.

What does everyone feel though that Americans are carrying the opinions of those who have no formal education on the things they speak on. Tomi Lahren has never studied sociology, Glenn Beck never went to college and spent most of his 20s as a substance abuse addict, Rush Limbaugh flunked out of college after two semesters to focus on radio. I just notice a lack of intellectual depth in these pundits

Neither did Jobs or Gates.

I don't know what is worse, your lack of understanding that education does not equal intelligence or your lame attack on our first amendment.

He never attacked the first amendment in this post.

Are you high?

Of course not. He is not attacking people on tv he disagree with because they don´t have a formal degree. And pretty much saying they don´t have the right and the only ones who should be on tv are those with an "english major".

But nice spin again,

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#18 Posted by judaspete (2220 posts) -

I guess that explains why these guys hate on education so often.

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#19 Posted by comp_atkins (34682 posts) -

@Jacanuk said:
@comp_atkins said:

their credentials are the ability to spout constant streams of bullshit and ignore facts.

You know a strange thing.

You don´t have to listen ;)

oh i don't

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#20 Edited by Zaryia (3611 posts) -

@Jacanuk said:
@zaryia said:
@Jacanuk said:
@Mercenary848 said:

I just found out that Sean Hannity was never able to complete a college degree, so he has no formal higher education; but he sways millions of political opinions. Im someone who although I have finished undergrad and am entering grad school, don't believe you need a college degree to be an expert on a specific field.

What does everyone feel though that Americans are carrying the opinions of those who have no formal education on the things they speak on. Tomi Lahren has never studied sociology, Glenn Beck never went to college and spent most of his 20s as a substance abuse addict, Rush Limbaugh flunked out of college after two semesters to focus on radio. I just notice a lack of intellectual depth in these pundits

Neither did Jobs or Gates.

I don't know what is worse, your lack of understanding that education does not equal intelligence or your lame attack on our first amendment.

He never attacked the first amendment in this post.

Are you high?

Of course not.

Then don't state otherwise. Makes people think you are either trolling or being satirical.

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#21 Posted by Jacanuk (13065 posts) -

@zaryia said:

Then don't state otherwise. Makes people think you are either trolling or being satirical.

You lost the sarcsm i see.

Again the whole thread is about people TS disagree with and the fact that he feels they have no right to speak on tv because they don't meet his standard.

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#22 Edited by Mercenary848 (11214 posts) -

@Jacanuk: Excuse me kind sir, but I believe you are trying to suffocate me with all the words you put in my mouth lol.

I never said "certain uneducated people shouldn't be allowed to speak". I questioned the credentials of many so called pundits, a lot of who have no formal or even informal education.

It leads me to believe their masters know they are ignorant, which will make them more believable to the other ignorant. You can't sell a product you don't believe in. And wonder why in America we are so obsessed with personality then expertise

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#23 Posted by KittenNose (2304 posts) -

@Mercenary848 said:

Excuse me kind sir, but I believe you are trying to suffocate me with all the words you put in my mouth lol.

I never said "certain uneducated people shouldn't be allowed to speak". I questioned the credentials of many so called pundits, a lot of who have no formal or even informal education.

It leads me to believe their masters know they are ignorant, which will make them more believable to the other ignorant. You can't sell a product you don't believe in. And wonder why in America we are so obsessed with personality then expertise

That is not how a spokesperson works. You don't need the individual to actually possess the quality you wish them to portray, they just have to convince the audience. Even if the media wished to select representatives perceived as ignorant by the masses, they wouldn't need to actually find ignorant people who are good in front of a camera.

It is kind of the way you don't need grizzled veterans soldiers to star in action movies. You need very pretty folk who are good at reading what you put in front of them.

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#24 Posted by Jacanuk (13065 posts) -

@Mercenary848 said:

@Jacanuk: Excuse me kind sir, but I believe you are trying to suffocate me with all the words you put in my mouth lol.

I never said "certain uneducated people shouldn't be allowed to speak". I questioned the credentials of many so called pundits, a lot of who have no formal or even informal education.

It leads me to believe their masters know they are ignorant, which will make them more believable to the other ignorant. You can't sell a product you don't believe in. And wonder why in America we are so obsessed with personality then expertise

Questioning their credentials is the same thing as questioning their "right" to speak.

Also Sean Hannity is just a figure head, he is a puppet that has the ability to sound convincing, same as Tapper and Wolf and any other figure head on the major networks. T You think they get hired because they have credentials? because they didn´t , they got hired because they have the needed ability to make people believe them.

They are in essence nothing but salesmen who can sell their product.

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#25 Posted by LJS9502_basic (163083 posts) -

Republicans don't use facts........they use feelings.

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#26 Posted by Jacanuk (13065 posts) -

@LJS9502_basic said:

Republicans don't use facts........they use feelings.

Oh the irony.

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#27 Posted by mrbojangles25 (40351 posts) -

@kittennose said:

Why on earth would you need a college degree for a position in the media? Particularly when the bulk of it is just reading a script other people (hopefully) vet. These folks generally have mics in their ears feeding them information and instructions if they are ever on the air live. Pundits might as well be robots.

Besides, most of the media presenting information are not experts in the various fields they talk about. "Experts suggest" is all the support a claim needs to be true, assuming it supports the narrative of the targeted demographic. How on earth does a liberal arts or poly sci degree suddenly give the script they present more credibility? Heck, do they even have to know what poly sci means? If the voice in their ear knows, I see no reason to care.

You're confusing a "talking head", such as a reporter or commentator, for someone that hosts a talk show, is a critic, pundit, and so forth.

You are right in the case of the former; they generally just read the script and don't need to know the subject material, though it is nice when they brush up on it or rehearse prior to it so they can at least appear competent; pronounce names, locations, and technical terms correctly; and so forth.

With the latter, however, it is incredibly important to be both educated and informed because you are debating the subject material, forming your own educated opinion based on facts, and influencing other people. In other words, you are taking facts and then telling people what they mean. So while a reporter can say "two plus two equals four" and they don't need to know why, they can just read that script and trust journalistic integrity (let's assume we live in an ideal world for this example)...

...while the pundit will go "Does two plus two really equal four? Some would disagree! What does that really mean? There are some mathematicians that argue 1.99 plus 1.99 equals 4 as well....so where are those .02 going? Who argues FOR THEM!?!!?!?!? RIGHT/LEFT WING CONSPIRACY!"

That's why they need to be educated, know what they are talking about, and so forth. Otherwise they can just say whatever the hell they want (like they do), and people will believe them like they believe the talking head on the local news (as they currently are).

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#28 Posted by Mercenary848 (11214 posts) -

@Jacanuk: that's very telling of how you interpret data(very poorly judging from your past posts). If I came to a job or teaching post and I had no credentials in the field, would you still listen to me? You might humor me and let me say my piece, but would you take me seriously.

Trick question in regards to you, god knows where you get your facts from; and I'm sure it's not pretty.

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#29 Posted by LJS9502_basic (163083 posts) -

@Jacanuk said:
@LJS9502_basic said:

Republicans don't use facts........they use feelings.

Oh the irony.

Quoted from a Republican. Once again.....you are lost.

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#30 Edited by Jacanuk (13065 posts) -

@LJS9502_basic said:
@Jacanuk said:
@LJS9502_basic said:

Republicans don't use facts........they use feelings.

Oh the irony.

Quoted from a Republican. Once again.....you are lost.

Not sure how you lost the irony in your statement but ok.

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#31 Edited by LJS9502_basic (163083 posts) -

@Jacanuk said:
@LJS9502_basic said:
@Jacanuk said:
@LJS9502_basic said:

Republicans don't use facts........they use feelings.

Oh the irony.

Quoted from a Republican. Once again.....you are lost.

Not sure how you lost the irony in your statement but ok.

My point

Your head

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#32 Edited by KittenNose (2304 posts) -

@mrbojangles25 said:

You're confusing a "talking head", such as a reporter or commentator, for someone that hosts a talk show, is a critic, pundit, and so forth.

You are right in the case of the former; they generally just read the script and don't need to know the subject material, though it is nice when they brush up on it or rehearse prior to it so they can at least appear competent; pronounce names, locations, and technical terms correctly; and so forth.

With the latter, however, it is incredibly important to be both educated and informed because you are debating the subject material, forming your own educated opinion based on facts, and influencing other people. In other words, you are taking facts and then telling people what they mean. So while a reporter can say "two plus two equals four" and they don't need to know why, they can just read that script and trust journalistic integrity (let's assume we live in an ideal world for this example)...

...while the pundit will go "Does two plus two really equal four? Some would disagree! What does that really mean? There are some mathematicians that argue 1.99 plus 1.99 equals 4 as well....so where are those .02 going? Who argues FOR THEM!?!!?!?!? RIGHT/LEFT WING CONSPIRACY!"

That's why they need to be educated, know what they are talking about, and so forth. Otherwise they can just say whatever the hell they want (like they do), and people will believe them like they believe the talking head on the local news (as they currently are).

First off, that is why you have someone talking in their ear, feeding them instructions. If a pundit says "get out your tin foil hats people!" it isn't because they are a cooky individual going all maverick. It is because the folks that do their writing think it will appeal to the targeted demographic.

Second, there is no market for the type of show you are describing. There is a reason why pundits so rarely engage in restrained, well researched, non-hyperbolic arguments that are crafted around the nuance of a topic. The audience isn't interested in cool heads exploring an idea, they want to know why they should be calling someone the next Antichrist or Hitler. You don't need an education to call Obama the Antichrist. One isn't necessary to confuse Bush's/trump's America and Nazi Germany. You don't need one to think people concerned about police brutality just hate cops. An education would mostly get in the way of equating health insurance with healthcare.

The job of a pundit isn't to foster understanding. It is to provide talking points and validate the preconceptions of the audience. At the end of the day if you listening to a media figure you are watching a performance crafted for a demographic, not seeking out an education.

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#33 Posted by KOD (2754 posts) -

@kittennose said:

The job of a pundit isn't to foster understanding. It is to provide talking points and validate the preconceptions of the audience. At the end of the day if you listening to a media figure you are watching a performance crafted for a demographic, not seeking out an education.

I would say the ability to convey accurate and truthful information on a "network that's selling point is saying its "news" is definitely a standard they should be held to and its worth noting that with one network,

Whats also note worthy is how the term "pundit" started being used so liberally on cable "news" networks and that was because they attempted to use "journalists" and they actually faced serious legal issues there, they then attempted to use "analysts" and once again faced some level issues. After all of this is when they decided to go with "pundits". The point being is that the intent for being misleading and creating false narratives has always been there with these networks, one seemingly being far more intentionally dishonest than the other two. A;ll of this is incredibly unethical for anyone who is attempting to suggest their entire existence is to convey "news"... who what when where why and how.

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#34 Posted by KittenNose (2304 posts) -

@kod said:

I would say the ability to convey accurate and truthful information on a "network that's selling point is saying its "news" is definitely a standard they should be held to and its worth noting that with one network,

Should be is another conversation. Doesn't have much to do with the current reality however.

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#35 Posted by KOD (2754 posts) -

@kittennose said:
@kod said:

I would say the ability to convey accurate and truthful information on a "network that's selling point is saying its "news" is definitely a standard they should be held to and its worth noting that with one network,

Should be is another conversation. Doesn't have much to do with the current reality however.

Not really, the whole thread is based on subjectivity.

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#36 Posted by SUD123456 (5000 posts) -

It is irrelevant to me.

Some pundits have zero credentials to opine on the particular subject they are addressing at any moment in time, while others have at least some credentials related to the subject. No one on earth has the credentials for every subject.

None of it matters to me as I do not cede my own ability to exercise critical thought to anyone.

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#37 Posted by LJS9502_basic (163083 posts) -

@SUD123456 said:

It is irrelevant to me.

Some pundits have zero credentials to opine on the particular subject they are addressing at any moment in time, while others have at least some credentials related to the subject. No one on earth has the credentials for every subject.

None of it matters to me as I do not cede my own ability to exercise critical thought to anyone.

What about the fact that uneducated people think they know what they're talking about and believe them?

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#38 Posted by Willy105 (24747 posts) -

@LJS9502_basic: Yeah, senior citizens and the general population gets a lot of their news from pundits (including the President!); there is real harm to bad discourse.

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#39 Posted by SUD123456 (5000 posts) -

@LJS9502_basic: First of all, it is not really about education, formal or otherwise. All you need is the ability for critical thought to ascertain whether any pundit knows what he/she is talking about. One can then decide to lend credence to the pundits view or not.

Second, we are all deficient in the vast majority of topics/issues because society has become far too complex for any one person to stay on top of the issues. If pundits disappeared overnight, people would still form impressions, only one of the inputs would be less. The new pundit might be your friend at the bar. It still comes down to one's own critical thought.

Third, why do we assume that people in general over-index on any individual pundit's view? For most people, it is far more likely that their pundit of choice reflects their pre-existing views, like an echo chamber.

Fourth, for the 'uneducated people', who lack critical thinking skills, and who have no preconceived notions of their own and have no other influencers... well then yes I would share your concern if I thought it mattered.

But it doesn't matter, because they are relatively small in number, their only voice is their vote, and with limited political choice there is every reason to believe that they roughly split along party lines as everyone else.

This is only an 'issue' because we are biased against the other sides pundits, not recognizing that our own side is the same. And this is true for every issue, because we all want the validation of feeling we are right. We get that validation by feeling we are better informed.

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#40 Posted by foxhound_fox (97010 posts) -

Finishing college/university doesn't indicate a person's level of intelligence, nor does having a degree give one qualifications to comment on a particular topic (someone with a BS in Chemistry isn't qualified to comment professionally on political science). Opinions formed from accurate data and with reasoned arguments don't need a college degree.

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#41 Posted by LJS9502_basic (163083 posts) -

@SUD123456 said:

@LJS9502_basic: First of all, it is not really about education, formal or otherwise. All you need is the ability for critical thought to ascertain whether any pundit knows what he/she is talking about. One can then decide to lend credence to the pundits view or not.

Second, we are all deficient in the vast majority of topics/issues because society has become far too complex for any one person to stay on top of the issues. If pundits disappeared overnight, people would still form impressions, only one of the inputs would be less. The new pundit might be your friend at the bar. It still comes down to one's own critical thought.

Third, why do we assume that people in general over-index on any individual pundit's view? For most people, it is far more likely that their pundit of choice reflects their pre-existing views, like an echo chamber.

Fourth, for the 'uneducated people', who lack critical thinking skills, and who have no preconceived notions of their own and have no other influencers... well then yes I would share your concern if I thought it mattered.

But it doesn't matter, because they are relatively small in number, their only voice is their vote, and with limited political choice there is every reason to believe that they roughly split along party lines as everyone else.

This is only an 'issue' because we are biased against the other sides pundits, not recognizing that our own side is the same. And this is true for every issue, because we all want the validation of feeling we are right. We get that validation by feeling we are better informed.

Yes it is about education....you should educate yourself on facts if you're going to listen to political pundits.

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#42 Edited by Mercenary848 (11214 posts) -

@Willy105 said:

@LJS9502_basic: Yeah, senior citizens and the general population gets a lot of their news from pundits (including the President!); there is real harm to bad discourse.

That is what I am saying. Also welcome to the board, I used to see a lot of your posts back in the day on SW.

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#43 Posted by Willy105 (24747 posts) -

@LJS9502_basic: Problem is that people depend on pundits to be educated, they figure that's why they are on TV.

@Mercenary848:Thanks! Never ventured outside of the videogame boards here.

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#44 Edited by LJS9502_basic (163083 posts) -

@Willy105 said:

@LJS9502_basic: Problem is that people depend on pundits to be educated, they figure that's why they are on TV.

@Mercenary848:Thanks! Never ventured outside of the videogame boards here.

Yes but doesn't that speak to the lack of education on those if they rely solely on pundits for information?

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#45 Edited by Mercenary848 (11214 posts) -

@Willy105 said:

@LJS9502_basic: Problem is that people depend on pundits to be educated, they figure that's why they are on TV.

@Mercenary848:Thanks! Never ventured outside of the videogame boards here.

I hear you, you posted some of the best hype threads in SW back when I was in my posting prime. I have always been 65%OT, 30% SW, and 5% nintendo boards, but once I came back and the boards died out; the faces were all different.