we tend to give people on our team a free pass. "it's okay. he's on our team," is the mentality. so we keep friends close and the useful idiot unfortunately grows up with a false sense of perceived knowledge from all the positive feedback we've given them for merely being a team-player. one day, when he gets the courage to call in to a radio show, he is steadfast to defend the illusion that nobody thought to challenge him on.
that's why it's good to sit down for a good debate for an hour or two. sharpen your observational skills. bounce ideas off somebody that aligns themselves from the other political spectrum. if you start hanging out with like-minded individuals all day you will probably stop growing -- next thing you know, you're being laughed off the air.