"There must be some way out of here"...
Said the Joker to the Thief. / "There's too much confusion, / I can't get no relief.
Anton Wylie explained this in his piece on Google and the end of "theories", just up. It is not politicians' imbecility, perversity, or wickedness that causes the "sheer fuckwitteriness that infests this Government" (Mike Crayshaw). It is the dominance of the scientifically respectable empirical psychology of "no-mind" - not Zen - but behaviorism.
> if the politicians want to give the public a reason to vote (Cris Page)
But a process externally identifiable as reasoning is difficult to observe, occurring at most for a few seconds after the observed phenomenon of head-scratching. Since the latter is also an effect of head-lice, the existence of reasoning in the experimental subject is difficult to infer. In any case it is of very minor importance as a determinant of behaviour. Have you heard the one about the paws of the dog being called "Food, Food, Food, and Sex"?
> how about they actually start listening to us
Oh but they do - it's called focus groups, and their importance must not be underestimated. A public meeting is a dangerous place for a politician (see Harriet's flak jacket). Besides, there are behavioural phenomena associated with massed groups of upset people which are inconsistent with the Standard Model of behaviourist psychology, reminiscent of chaos-theory types of behaviour-switch, and whose onset is difficult to predict. Things can so easily get ugly and spoil the make-up. Focus groups are excellent for identifying unhappiness factors - if you can make sure you eliminate people with the capability to hi-jack discussions and influence others (that's the professional politician's job).
> instead of preaching at us,
If you can do X, you do X. That seems to be the technological imperative of science, whether X = make nuclear weapons, or influence behaviour.
> riding roughshod over our freedoms and personal liberty
The only freedoms and liberties are those which the experimenter and the applied technologist set up - as constraints. Apart from that, there is only the relative happiness or unhappiness of the subjects, as evidenced by behaviours such as protest marches, writing to their MP, writing to the Daily Mail, grumbling down the pub.
> Sticker and prize draws
A well-established psychological manipulation technique, known for over 40 years as "token economics". This is derived from anthropological observation of the exchange of tokens (betel nuts, shark teeth, women) in primitive tribes, under a strictly functionalist interpretation of the data, i.e. whatever the customs "mean" to its participants is irrelevant, as is the wider semiotic context, which cannot in any case be replicated in a dispute-resolution procedure such as employer-employee relations, employer-union meeting, marriage-guidance facilitation. (And who'd want to dress down in feathers and body paint for a meeting anyway? BTW the Govt _will_ sanction public orgies if it has to).
> You've got 200,000 people to sign a petition. But we're still right and you're wrong. (Andrew Bolton)
In a population of 56 million, 200,000 signatures can be still be considered a statistically biased sample. Sorry, f**k off.
> the fact is that we all KNOW (not think any more) that politics is corrupt shite, run by incompetant idiots. (Liam)
Indeed it is. Tendering for local government works contracts is endemically by mafioso cartels of local contractors... But guess what. It doesn't matter what you know or think - your behaviour is all that matters.
> Everyone knows that kids (and adults) are not suspicious or distrustful of the process, (David Gosnell)
Correct. People instinctively believe the evidence of their senses, and trust other people unless they have reasons not to. Too much communing with your fellows risks too much agreement that the politicians may not like or know about - hence the public spy system. (And see also public meetings above). Far better to create artificial "tribes" and make damn sure that they don't exchange tokens in the first place. You make sure they don't _want_ to exchange tokens. You do this by injecting narratives of the type "soldiers bayonet babies", "barbarians switch off incubators in hospitals", "victims skin used to make lampshades", "prisoners thrown into mincing machines" (all lies) - albeit of a milder tone. "Men are rapists", "muslims are extremists", "pedo on every street" (all lies) - droned on and on and on. The stimulus you inject into the "public debate" depends on the sensation you wish to achieve - known from the 19th century. Repetition is a known method of reinforcement. Reinforcement is a known concept of animal psychology. (And you thought such a thing didn't exist!).
Cynicism is not a label for a state of mind - it was a practical philosophy which despised ease and pleasure. Ease and pleasure weakend the spine and the upper lip, things which sometimes need to be stiff to achieve the objective.
An end to cynicism in politics? Not unless you start thinking outside of their box. As their box is built on extreme materialism (physicalism), the way to go is extreme idealism. Not fantasies of utopia - but narratives in which ideas are the determinants of outcomes. Gird your loins and take a deep-breath, for here be (among other things) institutionalized religion, a grimpen you must pass over.
When enough people can change their minds, then and only then can the 100th Monkey phenomenon kick into play.
But you and I, we've been through that, / and this is not our fate. / So let us not talk falsely now, / the hour is getting late.