"We've arranged a civilization in which most crucial elements profoundly depend on science and technology. We have also arranged things so that almost no one understands science and technology. This is a prescription for disaster. We might get away with it for a while, but sooner or later this combustible mixture of ignorance and power is going to blow up in our faces."
"It is not always easy to diagnose. The simplest form of stupidity - the mumbling, nose-picking, stolid incomprehension - can be detected by anyone. But the stupidity which disguises itself as thought, and which talks so glibly and eloquently, indeed never stops talking, in every walk of life is not so easy to identify, because it marches under a formidable name, which few dare attack. It is called Popular Opinion..."
"There are two things which cannot be attacked in front: ignorance and narrow-mindedness. They can only be shaken by the simple development of the contrary qualities. They will not bear discussion."
-Lord (John Emerich Edward Dalberg) Acton
"Wanting to be right so badly that you come to actually believe that you are right, is not the same thing as actually being right.
If you can't tell the difference, you're hopelessly lost, and no-one can help you anymore."
-St. Brian the Godless
The National IQ Test
Watching the McCain-Palin campaign in action has made me realize that this isn’t just a contest between Republicans and Democrats, it’s a contest between the belief-based mentality and the thought-based mentality. It is a contest between those who do not habitually question things deeply to determine their veracity, and those who do.
It is a contest between those that think the cherubs are soap, and those who can tell that they’re plastic. (See previous post)
Now I don't know about you, but when I watch politics I pay attention not only to my candidate’s statements but also to those of his or her opponent’s. I look into the statements of the opponent deeply, to make sure that I’m backing the right person. I seriously consider the possibility that the opponent may be telling the truth, so I look their statements up on the web, read a lot of (often conflicting) data about them, and check out independent sources as well as my candidate’s rebuttal. I watch various sources of cable news. I read many different websites. I make every attempt to stay informed about both sides of every issue and even the related issues, and then I decide who’s telling the truth and who isn’t. By then it’s usually pretty obvious. And if the other guy isn’t telling the truth and my candidate is, this is not only a plus for the credibility of my candidate in my mind, but a minus for the other guy.
Now to my mind, there’s no other way to be. How else can one cut through the “spin” and see the substance other than by being a hypercritical skeptic? But to many people it’s a lot easier than that. They go with their “gut” instead. This is another way to say that they vote based on belief and emotion rather than on careful and unbiased thought. And they are legion.
How else to explain the fact that McCain-Palin is even close in the polls to Obama-Biden when by all rights with the vast amounts of easily-detectable distortions and outright lies that they’ve been tossing out there at their opponents they should be national laughing stocks by now? Not to mention the difference in message, and the obvious difference in the intelligence and judgment of the candidates? And the obvious fact, the undeniable reality that Sarah Palin is not anywhere near being ready to be president of this great country, and never will be, and that her selection was a mockery, a slap in the face to thinking Americans everywhere.
Apparently there are an incredible number of people in this country that do not see the value of skepticism and penetrating thought.
Oh, I see that Sarah Palin is finally getting close to being a laughing stock. About time. I was laughing at her the day she was introduced as candidate and have only stopped to vomit occasionally since. How long do some people take to see through such an obvious total and complete lie? Her entire persona is a carefully constructed fabrication. She lives the lie. She is the lie. She’s a puff of smoke in front of a mirror. A piece of eye-candy with an arsenic center. It worries me that people have been taking so long to see through her, though. She’s not a very good lie. She’s on the level of the toddler that says they didn’t eat the cookie with crumbs still on their lips. Transparent as glass and thus all the more appalling that some people can’t see through her at all, and that they can vote.
But good old John McCain is apparently a better lie. Oh, I assure you that he is now indeed a lie, as much as Sarah Palin is. He just has his past honor and glory and “maverickiness” to fall back on to make the lie seem more real.
(Hey, it worked when he was running for senate)
When you consider how much he’s broken from that past recently, how much he’s changed, it’s hard to believe that anybody would fall for it, but they still do. It’s sad, actually. He used to have a modicum of honor, but he traded it all for a chance at the prize. He’s sold his soul as much as Judas ever did, seeking to trade his honor and glory for power and fame. How is this not obvious to all? The man’s an open book, for all that have eyes to see.
Neither John McCain nor Sarah Palin is a very convincing lie, as lies go. Neither one is very hard to see through, if you’re a thinking individual. They’re not hard to judge as people. They’ve made it very easy, in fact. They practically dare us to spot them. They’re laughably obvious. Ms. Palin in particular is a caricature of vicious stupidity coupled with an egomaniacal drive. If people looked on the outside as they really are on the inside she’d look like Quasimodo instead of a pageant winner. The loathsomeness virtually drips off her. Just look at what she inspires among her base. She has the basest base in the country. When she called herself a pitbull with lipstick, I really didn’t think that she meant it literally. As in, she’s one vicious bitch if ever there was one.
Why aren’t more of us laughing? They're both very funny! Why do any of us even consider voting for them, when our only reaction should be amusement at their pathetic, childish attempts to fool us into thinking that they're competent when they're so clearly not?
I have to put this thought out there: If so much of the Republican Party wasn’t so religious, I don’t think they’d be so gullible and willing to just believe in someone without adequately examining them based on a few claims that appeal to them. They’ve been conditioned to have faith and believe in things without proof or evidence, as long as it “feels right.” And it “feels right” when it agrees with their preconceived erroneous worldview that they’ve been conditioned into in the first place. It even seems that some of them have little regard for the truth anymore, as in, they can’t even tell it from the lies, and don’t seem to see the importance of trying to. To them, the truth is whatever they believe it to be.
And of course, McCain’s white. That figures in here heavily as well, I’m sure. More ignorance at work.
This election is an important test. It is an IQ test for the entire nation. And it’s not like the usual IQ test. It’s not scored. It’s “pass or fail.” It’s “are we too ignorant as a country to merit survival as a world leader or even as a country, or are we worthy to be that "Shining City on a Hill" for the rest of the world once again?
If we fail, unfortunately we will deserve the consequences. And I fear that they will be dire.
More ancillary stupidity:
-Apparently a McCain volunteer carved a “B” into her own face and tried to say a black Obama supporter did it after he mugged her. She just admitted the hoax after a polygraph. How stupid was she? The "B" was reversed on her face, as in she carved it as it looked in the mirror. Drudge jumped all over it of course, since it showed how hateful we Obama supporters really are… And the right had a field day talking about it, how maybe it meant that people should think again about voting for Obama... The little psycho even got a call from the Queen Psycho herself, Sarah Palin!
Now with the truth out there, it only shows how psychotic McCain supporters can be and how rabid their campaign has become. Nice going there Matt Drudge, on vetting your sources or even caring about the truth. Nice going there McCain campaign for trying to foment hatred when you thought you had a chance. Too bad it backfired like that. Guess that's the risk you take when you try to appeal to American's nutcases.
-Also, Joe the Plumber was formerly Joe the Alaskan. He used to live there. Do you smell a rodent yet?
-And Sarah Palin just bought more clothes Monday. That’s in addition to the 150k that the republicans have already spent on her. She’s an expensive lie, apparently.
In never rains but it pours.