When I did my undergrad in university, one of the more interesting courses concerned the philosophy of history. I mention this fact, because I think it relevant to the discussion of partisanship and the delusion that some people have, that they are objective.
There was a school of thought that developed, within the historical community, called the Idealist School. The logic behind this approach to history argued that the historian was a blank canvas, hard facts were the only consideration in formulating a thesis. Any conclusions were simply the result of a careful reading of the evidence, there was the notion that a person could interpret objectively through the sheer power of facts. A reading of history was almost akin to a scientific formula, the observer was a conduit to truth.
Of course, this theory was rejected, hence the Idealist tag, because it failed to recognize the permanence of human bias. Objectivity, in the scientific sense, is illusion for any endeavor that involves human interpretation. While the facts are powerful, an individual historian must determine the weight and the relationship of the facts, which leads to different conclusions. In other words, a person can strive for objectivity, but this search always has limitation because you can't escape the lens of your own experience. Complete objectivity, absolute truth, is impossible once you accept bias as resident.
I joined the Liberal Party a few months ago. I did so, largely because I saw an opportunity to participate in a chance to reform a bloated national institution. However, in some ways I wish I had remained independent, primarily because I am occasionally disregarded as a "Liberal", "partisan", "kool-aid drinking" hack who's bias supercedes every opinion. Nevermind the fact I voted for the NDP last election, nevermind the fact I have voted Green in a prior election, nevermind the fact that I have criticized the Liberal Party on MANY occasions (in fact my first blog post argued in favor of turfing the Liberals), nevermind the fact that I written favorably about Layton and May, I am now the Liberal partisan.
I admit my biases, and they haven't really changed since I joined the Liberal Party. However, what I find annoying is the posture some people take, as a function of their apolitical orientation. Newsflash, everyone has a bias, everyone is a partisan in one fashion or another. Staying on the sidelines and pontificating from the ambigious pedestal doesn't give one more "objectivity", maybe it just makes the bias less obvious, but entirely real, nonetheless.
There are varying degrees of bias and partisanship. Some people, and we all know the examples, are so fiercely partisan that their opinion is almost irrelevant. No matter what the issue, everything is spun and that warping destroys credibility. I would hope that my opinions don't fall into that category, because I do strive for some fairness, from time to time, for balance. Everyone is a prisoner to their own bias, that fact limits our ability to "see" clearly. Those that actually believe they do "see" objectively are the worst, because that arrogance suggests a lack of self-knowledge. Deal with it, everyone is a partisan, nobody has the objective eyes, it's all just opinion in the end and I'm okay with the relativity.