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Thread: What do you understand by politics?

  1. #1
    Senior Member Array Lark's Avatar
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    Jun 2009

    Default What do you understand by politics?

    What does anyone understand by politics? Is it just the business of government or is it all social interaction? Are all relationships political in a sense? I'm just thinking of how people talk about office politics and about the status changes and bars even within a group of friends.

  2. #2
    IRL is not real Array Cimarron's Avatar
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    Aug 2008
    5w6 sp/so


    In some ways, I think of it as "applied ethics." (I don't mean only "Moral" Legislation.)

    But yes, I had a professor in school who taught Rhetoric, and he put forward the idea that human communication and society are based around persuasive language, and this would translate as such "politics." Politics are not only for the politicians--nearly all of us must engage in persuasion, negotiation, etc. when interacting with other people.
    You can't spell "justice" without ISTJ.

  3. #3


    off the top of my head, I would say that politics is about saying and doing what needs to be said and done to achieve your agenda (whether as an individual, or representing an organization or body of some sort).

    Politics exist in any relationship, be it one-one or one-many. When you say "I don't do politics" and you choose to be honest, straightforward and direct with everybody- that in itself is a political decision. (Much like how not caring about how you dress is in itself an unintended fashion statement.)

    I am of the opinion that the negative connotation to the term "politics" (as in, "he's so political!") is undesirable. We should all strive to be politically conscious. As a general rule, it is better to be aware of the formal and informal political system and hierarchy than to remain ignorant- you will make better decisions, for yourself and on behalf of whomever you represent. In some communities (like say, Japan, maybe?) it can be considered impolite to be blunt and straightforward, and you may find your honesty hampering your ability to achieve your goals- which is a shame.

    Understanding politics does not immediately equate to being a conniving, two-faced backstabbing agent of underhand skullduggery. It's about evaluating and understanding a situation and figuring out how it is to be handled effectively. By this logic, Barack Obama is a brilliant politician!

  4. #4
    Senior Member Array Ethereal's Avatar
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    Nov 2009


    Politics, I think, equals advocacy. What is being advocated can be anything, but it's the pushing of an agenda that is politics. I believe that personal relationships do not necessarily have to be political. They could be, and they are often used for political ends, and this whole political correctness thing is a symptom of such usages.

    What we call politics (on the governing scale) is more like a system that is political...

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