Complex Issues in a Twitter World

With the aid of new tools to communicate, the terrible irony is we do less meaningful communication. With Facebook, Twitter, Texting, PINterest, etc. we now resort to very brief nuggets of communication, which can only scratch the surface of an issue. Even with a picture, which is supposedly worth a thousand words, context is sometimes lost, or worse, misconveyed. Even with emails, many people react to the messenger or only read the tops of emails, meaning the first few paragraphs. And, I should add, I am not even counting the oftentimes mindless back and forth that transpires over these media which give people status reports on their day or how they feel about something that just happened.

You may have guessed I am not a Tweeter, but I do text as that is often the best way to communicate with my away-to-college children. So, these media do serve a great purpose. Yet when issues are complex like many of our problems in the world today, if we only rely on this media, much is lost in the translation. Since the briefer media is here to stay, I offer you some Tweets to use as you deem appropriate on a variety of topics, with an attempt to include some context.

Gun Control Tweets

  • OMG, another kid shot his sib! I heard the US leads the civilized world in kid gun deaths by far. That is tragic. Background checks are a must.
  • NRA keeps telling me the answer to our gun problem is more guns. Call me stupid, but that is like saying the answer to obesity is more fatty food.
  • I cant believe Congress cant pass a gun control bill when Americans want one. Even most gun owners want better background checks, including Ted Nugent’s brother.
  • Canada likes its guns too. Yet, US has 3x number of gun deaths. 80 out of 100 gun deaths in the richest 23 nations occur in the US. That seems to be a problem.
  • I cant figure out why someone in the US would want an assault weapon. Honestly would you date a guy or girl who has seven AK47s? I would run for the exit.

Climate Change Tweets

  • You can tell Chris Christie is running for Prez. He is now denouncing climate change to win the GOP nod. This is after his state was crushed by Sandy which was worse due to rising sea levels.
  • NC legislature would not accept a science report saying sea levels would rise 39 inches by 2100. They wanted one that said 8 in, so they got one. Cant hold back the tide with a report.
  • Newt Gingrich made a TV commercial with Nancy Pelosi in 2006 saying he was wrong about climate change. Then, when running for Prez last yr said he was wrong to say he was wrong. Hmmm.
  • 97% of scientists say climate change is here and man-influenced. Only 26% of GOP congressmen say it is. Hmmm. Science issue. Whom should I believe?
  • It seems the fossil fuel industry makes a bucket load of money. I heard they are huge donors to the GOP. You dont think there is any connection with the GOP saying climate change is hoax?
  • Biggest news story to get underplayed recently was scientists saying our carbon levels in the atmosphere have reached a level of great concern. I guess it wasnt scandalous enough. We need to act now.

Deficit Reduction Tweets

  • Some say we should cut taxes and spending to solve our deficit, but I cant see that working. Simpson Bowles said we should cut spending and increase some taxes. Of course I want to pay less, but the math wont work.
  • TEA partiers say we are taxed enough already, but I read the OECD in Paris say we are 32nd out of 34 countries in Tax Revenue per GDP and 10% below average. That does not jive with what the TEA crowd says.
  • Of course, we need to cut spending wisely, but we need to invest more in some areas to create growth and jobs – infrastructure, education, innovation.
  • OMG I just saw our deficit has been greatly reduced lower than when Obama took office. I read it was due to growing economy, higher taxes on wealthy, stopping the 2% payroll tax incentive and decline in war spending.

Healthcare Tweets

  • Help me understand why Obama passes a largely Republican idea as Obamacare and now Repubs dont like it?
  • Call me stupid but it seems to me Repubs dont like Obamacare as they want to prevent it from being successful. They want to beat Obama without much concern for us pawns in their political game.
  • Obamacare is not perfect and is complex, but its going to get more people covered and some good things have already happened with more young adults covered, prexist conditions going away, no lifetime limits…
  • I have heard a lot of GOPers say they dont want Obamacare, but I have not heard any ideas on how they want to cover the uninsured if it is repealed. I guess we just get screwed as before.

Scandal Tweets

  • Why is there still a fuss about Benghazi? Why havent the Repubs invited Ambassador Pickering and Admiral Mullens in to testify? They did the report back in Dec and seemed to put it to bed.
  • Now that Obama has provided his emails, it has gotten real quiet in the Benghazi Committee. Call me stupid, but I think they want to let it die with open questions rather than let them be answered.
  • This IRS thing is weird. It seems like overworked bureaucrats were trying to have the same folks review like kinds of filings and didnt realize this could look funny to others. Sounds like theyre more naive than criminal, but I need more info.
  • The one that bothers me most is the AP scandal. I am not sure I like the Justice dept getting my phone records so easily for national security. I would like some more due process.

I could go on, but I think I have covered enough topics for now. All of these issues are complex and unbiased data points are key. There are too many issues controlled by special interest groups. The IRS issue is complex and we need to wait for the completion of the investigations to render judgment. People calling for heads before the issues are known are making political statements.

Please feel free to use as you see fit. or create your own better grounded tweets. Yet, in any event, quoting my old boss – “My daddy used to say, believe half of what you read and nothing of what you hear.” Be an honest skeptic on what you read and seek the truth in everything.

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10 thoughts on “Complex Issues in a Twitter World

  1. Great stuff — I thought it was 72% of the Republicans in Congress who (publicly) deny climate change?? No? 26% is almost acceptable: it would mean the morons are outnumbered!

    • Thanks Z. I started to say more food, but you can actually it more of the right foods and lose weight. One of America’s greatest exports – obesity.

      • yes, on those days when the kitchen is down to legumes, rice, quinoa, and the garden has adequate greens and vegetables, i find that i am still ‘hungry’ – no matter how much i eat!

        it’s the fat.. and the sugar.. and alcohol that contribute to obesity.

        speaking of, i’m on my way to that sweet little bitty beach community where i’ll have a great meal of fresh fish.. or fresh shrimp… with trimmings for a whopping three dollars!

  2. I am signed on for Twitter and have no clue what it does. I am also on Facebook, but only to publicize my articles and to keep in contact with my daughter.

    Whether they be tweets or not, the above messages are great! What ever happened to conversation? Even our kids text us.

    Great piece, really enjoyed it!

    • Many thanks. My wife is on Facebook, so that keeps us in touch with the kids. I think the lack of conversation has something to do with increased gun violence. People do not know how to civilly disagree and take offense when none was intended.

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