Mayan campaign mashup 2012: Dum de dum dum DUM (II)

8 10 2012


Yes, Obama’s debate performance was mediocre, and yes, Romney has bumped himself up in the polls, but just as the alleged walk-off Obama of two weeks ago was an overreaction to Romney’s bad coupla’ weeks, so too is a WE’RE DOOMED response to Obama’s bad week.

The election is November 6—November 6, not October 1 or 6 or 8.

We’ve got a month, people, a month in which much can happen. Could Romney win? Yep. Could Obama win? Yep. Will the last two debates matter effect the electoral outcome? On the margins, yes. Will general campaign performance matter to the electoral outcome? On the margins, yes.

Given that this is likely to be a close election, do those margins matter? Yes.

This is one of the reasons I was annoyed by Obama’s performance*: When your on the ledge and the other guy is hanging off of it, you don’t step aside and let him elbow his way back up; you stomp on his fingers. Yeah, the other person could still claw his way back up, but why make it easy?

Anyway, Romney is back on the ledge—which, to this Obama supporter, is unfortunate—but that hardly means that Obama is hanging off of it.

Dude is pretty steady, remember?**

*Sure, his answers as information-packets were fine, and more fact-based than Romney’s, but debates are not just about the information-packets but about the delivery of those packets. Romney threw his packets hard and fast, while Obama just kinda dribbled them out, then toed ’em on the ground; he didn’t even bother trying to intercept Romney’s deliveries.

**Pace my last post, this is a reminder to myself as much as anyone else, if only because my first reaction to setbacks is often AAAAAAAAAAARRRRRRRRRRRRGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!

We might as well try: Dum de dum dum DUM (I)

8 10 2012

Guts are stupid.

Whenever someone says go with your gut or what is your gut telling you, I roll my eyes, or go half-lidded and twist my mouth, or mutter, guts are stupid.

Of course, most of those who advise recourse to our alimentary anatomy speak figuratively, not literally. They’re not really saying Listen to your colon or Ponder your digestive system or Meditate on your viscera; that would be silly.

But it is just as silly to advise people to forgo their reasoning abilities in favor of the so-called wisdom of the body.

Our bodies are not wise.

Yes, they have needs, and we need to pay attention to those needs, but in paying attention the wisdom is located in the attentiveness itself, not the thing to which our attention is drawn. Our bodies send us signals that we may then interpret as pain or pleasure or need, but, again, any wisdom is in the interpretation, not the signal itself.

So, too, may we have physical reactions to people or situations. I’ve been around folks who’ve creeped me out and have chosen to go this way rather that just because, but is this due to my spidey sense, or, again, to attentiveness to the signals I’m getting from those folks or the environment?

I’m quite willing to allow for a role for the subconscious, that is, that there are processes not under my conscious control which detect the presence of murmurings below the surface, but the subconscious is just that, sub-conscious.

It ain’t guts.

I might be particularly biased against gut-checks because my gut is so often wrong—or should I say, when I did listen to my gut I usually made the wrong decision. I am a very reactive person, very VERY reactive, so much so that if I have a strong reaction to something or someone, I make sure NOT to respond to that reaction. No, what I need to do is wait, think, then think some more before making any decisions or judgements. If I let my gut dictate my response, I would often be yelling NO or throwing things out the window or running in the opposite direction.

Am I confusing initial reactions to gut-knowledge? Perhaps, although those who state that our guts can speak are likely confusing guts with experience or habit or the skill gained through practice: when one is used to dealing with routine situations, it is possible to be sensitized to detours from the routine.

But what about those moments of indecision, when consulting one’s entrails is recommended as a suitable method of adjudication likely to lead to reliable results? Well, you probably a) are already leaning toward one side, such that tipping over feels right (or reeling back feels wrong), or b) you honestly don’t know and are simply relieved to have chosen at all.

At which point you might as well have flipped a coin.