Do you really care about who run the country?

Discussion in 'Cultural Discussions' started by kevinleihuang, Feb 10, 2006.

  1. kevinleihuang Member

    Maanshan, China
    Chinese Madrin, P.R.China
    There are parties which may some day have the access to run the country. Some of the politicians do care about the real benefit of the people they represent rather than their own benefits or political career. They always try their best to make it a better living for the commons and to make it a better environment for the development of the country. But, there are sort of politicians who cares about nothing but their career in political stage. If they some day get to the top of the power, I can hardly imagine where they will lead the country to.

    However, there are a lot of people who do not care about whether the leaders do things for the good of the country. They just care about whether they can benefit from the policies these leaders set up.

    So, in your opinion, do you really care about who run the country?
  2. timebomb

    timebomb Senior Member

    Singapore, English
    I do care but there's not much I can do about it. I guess it depends on where you live.

    I think most politicians start off with good ideals. Most really care for their citizens and want to do good by them. But over time, they get corrupted by the power they hold and it becomes more important to them to stay in power than to do something for the people.

    I wouldn't say all politicians are bad although most will agree that power corrupts. It's hard to be a good politician because no matter how hard you try, you can never please everyone. If you try to please everyone, you please no one.

    Loh K L
  3. Voloshka Senior Member

    Russian, Ukraine
    I would repeat the words of one of our humourists and say that people and government must be isolated from each other. Those two categories (people and government) have nothing to do with each other, in my country at least. One of the USSR leaders told once that one can get tired of anything in this life, except power. Money is the only engine of politics. Pity.
  4. Fernando Senior Member

    Spain, Spanish
    You must care who runs the country. If not, they would "care" about you.
  5. Outsider Senior Member

    Portuguese (Portugal)
    I don't care much about who runs my country, for the reasons you have well explained, but I do care about how it is run. The way to improve one's country is not by placing the 'right' people in front of it (an impossible task, and a dubious concept), but by improving its institutions.
  6. cubaMania Senior Member

    Wow, Outsider, you have hit the nail squarely on the head!
  7. CheRie Senior Member

    Español/Inglés Houston/Caracas
    As a country, we have learned to care about politics and politicians. We have learned the lesson the hard way. Our president was elected by the minority that used to vote and now the whole country is paying the consequences. The minority that voted hoped for a mesiah and there is no such thing (not in politics!) The rest thought that even though the situation was not getting better at least it wouldn't go terribly wrong. What a big mistake!!! Now the mayority is trying to "undo the mess" and it has become a difficult task to accomplish.
    So, the advice is: do not take things for granted, become interested and involved in your country's political matters. Oh, by the way... my country? Venezuela.
  8. *Cowgirl*

    *Cowgirl* Senior Member

    USA English
    I don't care so much who it is, as what they support, their views on issues, and their policies.
  9. cuchuflete

    cuchuflete Senior Member

    Maine, EEUU
    I must have grown cynical some years ago. I don't share the common assumption that elected/selected presidents and their governmental stooges appointees 'run the country'.
    At times, they are mere figureheads for those with real power.

    Who has the real power? Obviously it includes economic interests, political pressure groups...the usual suspects. Maybe more surprisingly, it can also include thousands of mid- and low-level burrocrats, whose little day-to-day decisions about how or whether to implement executive policy can touch our lives.

  10. Is this a deliberate, donkey related misspelling of bureaucrats, Cuchu? :D

    La Reine V. ;)
  11. Chaska Ñawi

    Chaska Ñawi modus borealis

    an old Ontario farmhouse
    Canadian English
    Cuchu, I agree completely with you on both counts .... and the latter comment reminds me of the BBC's "Yes, Minister" and "Yes, Prime Minister", which was an uncomfortably accurate rendition of internal governmental departments in Canada as well.

    What scares me about Bush that the people pulling his strings seem better at keeping a low profile than other handlers.

    My favourite system of electing a leader still comes from The Hitchiker's Guide to the Galaxy: choose, by lottery, a person who absolutely doesn't want the job and has no interest in politics, and appoint him to the position.
  12. cuchuflete

    cuchuflete Senior Member

    Maine, EEUU
    Why not consult with an expert?
  13. Chaska Ñawi

    Chaska Ñawi modus borealis

    an old Ontario farmhouse
    Canadian English
    That should have come with a warning label! Coffee is supposed to enter the mouth, not exit the nose.
  14. Kräuter_Fee

    Kräuter_Fee Senior Member

    Portuguese&Spanish (native)/ (English&German - foreign)
    I do care about who runs the country where I live. However I've already understood that having ideals makes no sense since the politicians have different interests... and sometimes they even have ideals but they can't do whatever they want. The world is not simple...
  15. maxiogee Banned

    Slowly but surely politics is ceasing to matter in people's lives.
    Decisions are taken by major multi-national companies and trans-national organisations which have more effect on our lives than those made by our individual governments.
    What Unilever or Diageo or the UN or the World Bank do and say is vastly more significant than anything the Irish Government do or say about how I live my life. That is not to say that my government is not important in my life, but its impact is small - many decisions are taken by the European Union, or the GATT or the G8 which dictate how my government must act.
    This is a development which is much to be regretted but which I see as irreversible, alas.
  16. Outsider Senior Member

    Portuguese (Portugal)
    I agree, Maxiogee, but what you describe is politics, too. It's not government, but it's politics.
  17. Papalote Senior Member

    Quebec, Canada
    Spanish, English, French
    Good morning, everyone

    I thought I didn`t care about who ran Canada until the past election. I`m glad I voted even though I lost:eek: . I care, because governments can at least function (I hope:confused: ) without transnationals in issues like abortion, gay marriages, the death penalty. Globalization and transnationals are what govern the world nowadays. There isn`t much I can do about that, but my vote still counts on home issues, so I guess I can call it a home remedy, eh? :D

    I also care who gets elected, because after all his personality (or lack of it) is what the rest of the world will perceive as Canadian :eek: - poor us!

    Enjoy the rest of the day!


  18. Agree 100% Papalote. How would you like to have Bush's poodle, Blair (who will soon be claiming he created the universe), running Canada?

    Voter apathy allowed this man a third term in office. Far from being a socialist, he is a dyed-in-the wool 'Conservative' with non-conservative values. When he was elected in that dark year of 1997, the first person he had consultations with, about leadership qualities, was none other than Margaret Thatcher.

    So, yes, I care deeply about what this Prime Minister is doing to Britain, and how Britain is seen on the world stage. The sooner he steps down the better.

  19. CrazyIvan Senior Member

    Since I got the right to vote in election, I passed twice of my chances. One was for president and the other is for legislators, both are major political figures in the political system here.

    The reasons why I did not vote were the same, I was abroad. And it was amazing to see those election compaigns while I was abroad.

    How people can be driven by their political passion and shouted and applauded. It seemed that their energy would not be drained off and their life burned brighter due to the election.

    I guess this is all about in election. How to draw people's attention to certain issues and make them believe these issues are more important than others and "WE, this party" can do better in these issues over another parties.

    But, is it so? ;)

    Those issues they chose to debate are usually highly controversial, and have little to do with our daily life. Domestic policies, such as healthcare and education, are very important. However, they are difficult issues. Parties can either form an agenda or plans over these issues easily. So, they choose controversial things, and they do not have to plot any concrete ideas over those issues, simply debate itself can draw enough attention and drive people to vote.

    Isn't it pathetic? :(

    So, I really agree with what Outsider just said. I do not trust the politicians, however, the institute is very important. As long as a legal system funtions well and those people in the government are still working.

    Then we will just be fine. :D

    But I still belive that to attend political events to some extent is good for formating public sentiment, which can push government to hear what people need. So, our vote should be based on issues, not parties.

    However, I still feel myself politically clung to certian party. But I, mostly, refuse to go for vote, as long as they cannot offer good and clear policies. Yes, I do believe we should care about who run the country, and use our vote to award/punish those in the government.

    But, too bad it doesn't work every time...

    So, we just wish the best that we do not make mistakes. Even we make one (and we usually do,) we just hope our life still can continue and struggle a way out, and our life can continue well. :cool:
  20. opsidol Senior Member

    US - English
    Claro que pienso que es importante quien dirige el país pero al mismo tiempo no tenemos mucha influencia en lo que pase. Aunque todos los que aspiran a mandar el país dicen que todo va a cambiar para bien y etcetera, de verdad nunca ocurre y siempre nos dejan descontentos.
  21. Very well said, not so 'crazy' Ivan. :)

    It's all very well for political parties to dangle a nice juicy carrot in front of the voters saying, 'We will do this, we will change all that is bad, your lives will be much better if you vote for our party.' But, once voted into power, people can see for themselves how hollow those promises were.

    In Britain, Blair's election victory speech in 1997 ('annus horribilis' for this country) was centred on three words - 'Education, education, education.'

    Now into his ninth year in office, Britain's education system has never been in such a bad state. It is failing abysmally. The drop out rate for 16 year olds is one of the highest in the world. 'Functional illiteracy' is on the increase (estimated at an alarming 1 in 5 of all school leavers). Many school leavers are either unable to work or refuse to, relying instead on State Benefits.

    Young girls are deliberately getting pregnant so that the state will provide them with accommodation. They frequently live without the child's father and have no parenting skills. Anti-social behaviour has greatly increased, due to 'boredom'. It is quite common to see youngsters (who are still at school) roaming the streets in the early hours of the morning.

    Another of Blair's election victory cries was 'Things can only get better!'

    Enough said.

    La Reine V
  22. CrazyIvan Senior Member

    "Crazy" only can be seen in certain occasions..;)

    Actaully, I think people understand that those promises cannot be hold after those politicians get elected, but still some of their party assertion can still be attractive enough to draw certain segment of voters, which eventually cumulate enough vote for them to be in the office.

    Therefore, for staying in power, the ruling party can play tricks. One thing, as you said, just offer those juicy carrots. But the ruling party also knows that people start not to trust them and not to cast their ballots based on those "virtual"(virtual but never be true.) policies. So, secondly, they find a way to attack opposition party, for their weakness, in lack of cooperation, and all other major and minor defects, which make people believe if they do not vote for ruling party, they do not really have better choice.

    That is why, sometimes, I am wondering whether bipartisan has been the major weakness of democracy system. A ruling party trying hard to stick to power and a opposition party which is too weak to make any "significant counter-attack."

    Same as I addressed before, who allow him stay in office? The voters? or a weak opposition party?

    That is why I always think the opposition party should take some responsibilities as well.

    :eek: This paragraph really amazed/shocked me!!! Is this true?

    Once I traveled to Glasgow and Edinburgh. I find some youngsters lingering in the streets, dressing in a very funky style and act wierdly. So, I guess this scene is what you indicated in this paragraph.

    I just cannot image how serious it is. For me, it was a case or two on the street and I think it is no big deal.


    Things can only get better because he has made it so bad? :rolleyes:

    Plus, sorry for late response. I thought my previous reply was posted but I found it wasn't. i guess the maintenace caused my confusion. :eek:
  23. It certainly is, CrazyIvan. Teenage pregnancy rates in the UK are the highest in Europe. In 2002, 39,286 cases were recorded. The government invested £60 million to try and ease the problem, but it continues to rise.

    Some schools, in their sex education programmes, are concentrating on the message that oral sex among the under 16 year olds is the best way to avoid pregnancy. It was proposed, last year, to give sex education to children as young as 5. :eek: Opposition from parents has prevented this coming into being.

    Anti social behaviour by young people has prompted the government to issue ASBOs and ABCs to reported offenders. An ASBO is an Anti Social Behaviour Order and an ABC is an Acceptable Behaviour Contract. The former has the weight of the law behind it, the latter is a voluntary contract, signed by the offender who promises to amend his/her unacceptable behaviour.

    Not many ASBOs have been issued since much of the anti social behaviour goes unreported. Vicitims are too frightened of repercussions to inform the police.

    Another recent phenomenon in the UK is 'happy slapping'. Some young people find it very entertaining to beat up another person while one of the group films it on his/her mobile 'phone. The video is then forwarded to their absent peers for them to 'enjoy' at their leisure. The most tragic, recent event was when two youths set fire to a man sleeping in a bus shelter. The attack was filmed with a mobile 'phone. The man survived but spent two months in hospital. Another attack was on a 13 year old boy who was tied up and set alight. He managed to break free and douse the flames. Can you imagine such horror? More details of 'happy slapping' here, if you can bear to read it.

    Words fail me!

  24. cirrus

    cirrus Senior Member

    Crug Hywel
    UK English
    I care a lot. My background includes years of community development work. The aim of this is to get local communities to define their own local priorities and build local solutions to the problems they face. In my experience this is something elected politicians feel less than uncomfortable with. On the one hand whilst they say they have a mandate but actually this is just a tick in the box once every four years. There is nothing like the detailed consent you get from talking through ideas, presenting these back to the community (something which is really powerful as you really feel listened to) getting local voting on different proposals and then reporting back on progress as it develops and you review what you have achieved together.

    Having said all of that, what I notice is just how hard it is to change things even when you are inside the system. Individual remits are quite tightly defined. Even when resources are available you have to meet any amount of local and national rules and demands of different bureaucracies. People forget how much lies beyond individual government's scope. It isn't just about big business but other governments: for example if I ruled the world, the targets of the Kyoto agreements would seem unambitious. Forcing others to act like you want them to is hard.

    I am also aware of how the system works. It is all too easy to slag off politicians and say they are just in it for themselves. I disagree. As you don't have a chance of getting in as an independent you have to be part of a party list. This means you must follow the party line. If you actually care about politics this can be a hard one to swallow because often what comes out isn't what you personally believe in.

    Add to this the fact that the media often act more like ring masters in a circus. On the one hand we all have access to 24 hour news but it is often superficial to the nth degree. News has almost become a branch of entertainment. Look at a typical news programme ten minutes national, five international, ideally both with footage of somebody famous (a couple of pretty grinning idiots with plenty of money, possibly plastic surgery and less talent) five on sports and three on the weather, time for an advert or two anyone? Where's the analysis, where's the background, when are stories followed up?

    Journalists aren't stupid but tend to report their stories with an angle, a hook to get your interest. This means stories with good pictures get reported, those without could be equally important but get missed out and this is without even considering the effects editorial bias and the agenda of who pays for the programmes we see.

    Meanwhile the tools which would contribute to accountability and better decision making - good flows of information and analysis of options get missed out of the equation. Imagine if instead of constantly asking who's to blame journalists asked decisions were taken and what other factors need to be considered.
  25. maxwels

    maxwels New Member

    Some days prior to the poll most politicians go about helping the deprived under the pretext of triumphing the elections by winning the favour of them all.These men tend to forget what they'd vowed once they reach to power and they probably look for comments what their rivals has to say only to pick a bone with them and cause commotion nationwide.These days mud slinging,washing dirty linen in public has become a lot common leading to rage and violence.One little statement from their opponent will ruffle their temper provoking them largely to launch a scathy remark in return besides looking for ways to shine in borrowed plumes.Such men who hog the limelight have no other role except indulging in one gimmick or the other,so I barely care them.

    --- Benjamin Maxwell
  26. AlfonsoHKG Senior Member

    Castilian (madrileño-valenciano, living in Hong Kong)
    El Zapatero es para matarlo
  27. AlfonsoHKG Senior Member

    Castilian (madrileño-valenciano, living in Hong Kong)
    Laia, el Zapatero es para matarlo porque les da cuerda a los que intentan desmembra este pais.

    Si dices que Rajoy es un fascista pruebalo
    Si dices que Rajoy es un mentiroso pruebalo

    Mira, no voto desde hace 15 anyos, me da igual, pero Zapatero es el peor gobernante que ha tenido nuestra democracia (hasta Felipe chorizin y Aznar guerritas eran mejor)
  28. Laia

    Laia Senior Member

    Catalan, Spanish
    El PP es un partido fascista. Un ejemplo: la subvención con dinero público a la fundación Francisco Franco.
    El PP es un partido mentiroso. Un ejemplo: dice que el castellano en Cataluña está en la misma situación que estaba el catalán en los tiempos franquistas.

    No tienen ningún tipo de vergüenza. Cada vez que los veo por la tele, se me indigesta la comida.
  29. cirrus

    cirrus Senior Member

    Crug Hywel
    UK English
    Entonces si te da un bledo votar, porque descalificas a democratas eligidos?
  30. cuchuflete

    cuchuflete Senior Member

    Maine, EEUU
    It has been said that a people get the government they deserve. Perhaps that is especially true for those who don't vote. :D
  31. maxiogee Banned

    I hate it when short people run the country, or people with excessively long noses, but other than that I find one lot as bad as the next, and not as bad as the one which went before, or vice versa - I think.:D

    I could be wrong.
  32. AlfonsoHKG Senior Member

    Castilian (madrileño-valenciano, living in Hong Kong)
    1) De que subvenciones hablas? pruebas
    2) Franco prohibia el catalan en las escuelas bajo una dictadura militar.
    Los nazionalistas catalanes prohiben el castellano en las escuelas dentro de una democracia y desobedeciendo las leyes. Se rien de la democracia, actuando de manera alegal e ilegal.

    Y es cierto, no voto. Pero me quejo de Zapatero porque esta poniendo en peligro mi pais. Para las proximas elecciones volvere a votar.
  33. Fernando Senior Member

    Spain, Spanish
    I vote, but the main obligation of a citizen (voter or not) is to criticize his rulers.

    For sure, Zapatero (elected) deserve severe criticism. I do not see why he should not be criticized, just the same Aznar (elected, absolute majority) was criticized.
  34. AlfonsoHKG Senior Member

    Castilian (madrileño-valenciano, living in Hong Kong)
    Por que en mi pais existe libertad de expresion y libertad para votar o no.

    Estoy ejerciendo mis derechos constitucionales en pleno derecho y acorde a derecho.

    Esta misma libertad de expresion que te permite a ti criticarme directamente, lo que acepto. Pero intentar indirectamente sustraerme de los derechos estipulados en la Carta Magna no es democrata ni aceptable.
  35. Laia

    Laia Senior Member

    Catalan, Spanish
    Escoge el link que quieras.

    2) Durante la dictadura, a la gente que hablaba catalán les ponían multas, les decían que ladraban y una serie de aberraciones que no hace falta que escriba.
    Si no tenemos el derecho a dar las clases en catalán en Cataluña, ¿lo harán en Madrid para nosotros? No.
    El castellano no está prohibido en las escuelas catalanas, de hecho se estudia... ¿lo sabías?
  36. AlfonsoHKG Senior Member

    Castilian (madrileño-valenciano, living in Hong Kong)
    Claro, era una dictadura, igual que en Alemania mataban judios, por lo que la comparacion no da a lugar.

    I don't know whether Castilian is taught in Catalonia as I don't live there. I just know that the High Court has confirmed many times that what I am saying is true.

    They are cleaning their soft parts (slang, where the sun don't shine" with the Constitution (i tambe amb l'Estatut de Catalunya!)
  37. Laia

    Laia Senior Member

    Catalan, Spanish
    That's the point. You have no idea, but you give an opinion anyway...

    Mira Alfonso, puedes seguir diciendo misa, que no voy a perder más tiempo con esta historia.

    A PALABRAS NECIAS, OÍDOS SORDOS. Esta es mi respuesta a todos tus argumentos.
  38. I hope you always exercise your franchise, Maxiogee. As cuchuflete has said 'people get the government they deserve. Perhaps this is especially true for those who don't vote.'

    Do you only vote for tall people with dainty noses? Cyrano de Bergerac look-alikes wouldn't meet with your approval I take it. ;)

  39. AlfonsoHKG Senior Member

    Castilian (madrileño-valenciano, living in Hong Kong)
    Para Laia, a palabras necias (sentencias del Tribunal Supremo), oidos sordos (ERC). Eso es lo que hace ERC con la aplicacion de la ley
  40. cuchuflete

    cuchuflete Senior Member

    Maine, EEUU
    Applying my moderator boina to my thick skull, I ask La muy estimada Laia and El muy estimado Alfonso to take their particular dispute to either of

    --otro hilo
    --the parking lot

    It really is not the topic of this thread.

    Con respeto para las opiniones de los dos,
  41. elionor Member

    Spanish -Spain
    I do care!

    But I rely more on people than on political tendencies.

    There are truly honest, reliable politicians.... it's a pity they aren't all in the same party!
    And it's sad to see their voices are sometimes silenced.
  42. learnerr Senior Member

    I don't. Honestly, I don't see why having as a president one person and not another should change anything in daily life.
    I suspect, many of Russians share this view (expressed by Voloshka in the beginning of this thread as well). The discussions over mr. Putin or other matters of this kind can be quite heated, still I don't think they are any vital interest for many. It is just a topic for a talk, either casual or hobbyist. There are also quite some people who find politics boring and prefer not to discuss it at all. Difficult to say how many (in my perception, a very significant number, but I might have bias towards my own attitude), but anyway, as a result, elections are not popular in Russia.
  43. Ania R. Senior Member

    Poznań, Poland
    Polish (Poland)
    I do care, even though (like probably in many other countries), regular people don't see much difference in their daily lives. But somehow it bothers me when the people who run the country are people whose vision of this country's future is totally diferent from mine. Although it's not like I lose any sleep over it, as aside from voting there is nothing more that I can do anyway... I'm just hoping that they don't ruin this country while I'm alive :D
  44. irinet

    irinet Senior Member

    I have read everything you posted here and, to be honest with you, I don't get it. What is the purpose of the thread, do we need to come to a conclusion, do we need to learn something from our constant disappointment after the elections, do we care if we vote and don't care if we missed it? Does anyone really think that 'to vote' means that it really counts??!! Who's pulling the strings? Does anyone here believe that 'we are'???
    Ha, I really believe that, for instance, in my country, the voting population play the Muppets Show.
    Also, reading this thread, I can even think further and notice that the Muppets Show has an international, fulminant success: Putin, EU, Blair, Obama, etc.
    What's to care about? Whom are we supposed to care about: us or them?
    Everyone posting here cares and has vouched for some political party, though politicians are too weak (except for Putin!).
    P.S. Institutions work iff there are good laws.
    Politics does no longer serve our cause! Something should happen about it and just talk about 'care' is not enough. Replacement of such decay would do much good. All People need new, fresh air to breathe! Peace remains a very good and wise thing to keep in this disturbed world!
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2013
  45. إسكندراني

    إسكندراني Senior Member

    أرض الأنجل
    عربي (مصر)ـ | en (gb)
    Complacent populations deserve what they get.
  46. learnerr Senior Member

    See, the point of not caring is not that the rulers rule the country anyway, but that the people run the country anyway. So, if there was violence in GB as someone here reported, the problem was hardly that one person was the Prime Minister and not another, but that something went wrong with world pictures of certain people. Who knows why? Maybe their parents didn't read signs. Maybe something else. It was a mass thing, one person was not supposed to work it out.
    To think real ideas and to do real things is the only way to care.

    There is a saying that expresses exactly what I wrote, though it is often misinterpreted: a government is as good as people are. That's because of many factors, one of them is that people really run any country, and one consequence is that if they decide to transmit some responsibility on that part of the population that is called their government, then that's their choice, anyway. Another, well, is that it is statistically improbable that the people who end up in the government are different in their attitudes than the rest of people, unless of course these people are not some culturally closed and sealed dynasty or foreign officials, and these both cases are rare.
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2013
  47. irinet

    irinet Senior Member

    We seem to forget about who's really running the worldwide show. It's "Money that rules, opens all the doors and ruins the law", and it's more..., all the souls, I may add. (Ioan Slavici - one of the greatest Romanian writers)!
  48. Sepia Senior Member

    High German/Danish
    As long as Russians have that attitude - and a lot of them do - obviously nothing will change. However, obviously increasing numbers of pepole want things to change.
  49. learnerr Senior Member

    Sorry, I don't understand what you're saying. Could you please refer to facts and not to mantras or weasel words?
  50. panzerfaust0 Senior Member

    Hi..I wonder if we are allowed to ask language questions in this forum? Anyway, I just have a question regarding this phrase you used, "dubious concept". What does it mean/what are you trying to say? Thanks.

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