- Deeply entrenched views, unwillingness to listen to other side aiding partisanship
- Some readers blame the other party for Washington's woes
- Still others say we are all at fault for the partisanship plaguing politics
For all of the teeth gnashing over congressional gridlock, many voters are loathe to admit they have contributed to the deep partisan divide in Washington.
In the comments section on CNN.com's website, responses to a story about how Americans and government have together created a culture intolerant of different political views reflected the divisions seen in politics.
Those with progressive leanings and others with more conservative views blamed each other for partisanship.
"The tea party is a political arm of major corporations wrapped in a blanket of patriotic fervor created out of thin air and racial hatred. Thats why DEMS do not have these made up platforms. The GOP is the main problem- old white dudes still livin' in the 50's," wrote Robert Neely.
Then there was this:
"Since liberals are obsessed with controlling every second of the lives of citizens because obviously they know everything about everything, I would say the movement that distills what it means to be liberal into a convenient grassroots form would be a nazi. So the liberal equivalent and polar opposite of the tea party is the nazi movement. Have fun with that, nazi putz," wrote Luke Meter.
Comments go on and on like that. Those trying to raise points about both parties being at fault are drowned out by detours into Obamacare, the Iraq War, the need for term limits, and the role of the media.
And in between, lots of insults about the other side.
"Being an ideologue needn't be a bad thing IF one's ideology is based on objective morality and evidence. The GOP's ideology is based on anti-science Creationism and personal greed for the most part. I don't trust them to make sound decisions for the good of everyone. This isn't a case of "everyone's at fault, why can't we just get along?" It's a case of greed vs. altruism and common decency," wrote Alec Sevins.
Still some say voters need to take personal responsibility for the problem.
"don't be ignorant by thinking that only only party is at fault. neither party serves anything other than themselves. both are almost entirely concerned with getting their party elected. as soon as we the people stop playing their game and stop playing prevent defense just so the other party doesn't win THEN we may be able to et this country heading in the right direction...something we haven't been doing for a very very long time," wrote a reader who identified as don.
And some readers had no problems chiding others for what they saw as one-sided views.
"This idea people like you have where it's all the Republicans fault is nonsense. Gridlock is what happens when both parties refuse to work together. You act surprised when you re-elect a Democrat President with a Republican controlled house and nothing is getting done. Democrats claiming that Republicans are being obstructionist is nothing more than the pot calling the kettle black." Chewbacca89 wrote in response to another reader.
Still others offered suggestions for change.
"I continue to believe that we have the government we deserve. As long as the people treat running the country as a win/lose (I win, you lose) proposition we will remain stagnant as more progressive countries move ahead. Too many citizens abdicate their responsibilities and do not judge their candidates any further than the sound bites provided by a media run by corporations who expect financial results over sound news. The thing is, it's really simple to become informed. Listen, read, and then discuss issues with people who have different viewpoints. Verify, verify, verify as much as possible and then punish those who provide shady information. And above all, think as an individual. Don't be a parrot or a sheeple. We're really too smart for that," wrote WillyNilly.