Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Unpleasant Truths

Do I know what is true and what is not? Of course not. Are there things I believe are true, or at least probably true? Yes. You may not agree. For example, it seems to be accepted as true that Governor Perry is a reasonable candidate to become President of the United States, but is just not adept at debating and is unfortunately subject to gaffes. I do not believe it is true he is a reasonable candidate for President, it is true he is not good at debating and he does make gaffes, but the real truth is, I think, he’s basically stupid. I often take care to distinguish between ignorance and stupidity, in Perry’s case I believe the unfortunate truth is, he is both ignorant and stupid. This is, of course, merely my opinion, based on my observations of him to date. Stupid is as stupid does, and he does a lot of stupid.

Then there is the case of Newton Leroy Gingrich, self-proclaimed intellectual, idea man, egomaniacal savior of the world, and quite possibly one of the greatest con men in all history. The truth is, I believe, Newt Gingrich is simply a pompous windbag, a pretentious fake intellectual, and at best a kind of half-assed historian, who has somehow managed to get people to believe he is something he is not. I suppose you could count this as an achievement in its own right, but I don’t believe it makes him a credible candidate for President. He perhaps cannot be said to be actually stupid, but his false presentation of self is catching up with him. His defense seems to be to say, “If you can’t say something nice about me, don’t say anything at all.”

Rick Santorum is a somewhat more difficult case. I’m not certain whether he is really stupid or not. He is, first of all, apparently obsessed with other people’s sex lives, is terribly homophobic, that leads me to believe he is it at least pretty ignorant about human sexual behavior. What makes me suspect he may be stupid is his latest tirade about income inequality. He says he is all for income inequality, because some people work harder than others, have more ideas, and therefore deserve more than others. He also accuses President Obama of wanting everyone to have the same income. Now it is true that some people work harder than others, and if income was actually related only to hard work he might have a point. But as this is not the case his argument is simply beside the point. If he doesn’t realize this he is stupid. If he believes Obama is a socialist who wants everyone to have the same income he is either ignorant or stupid or both. The unpleasant truth is that people who make lots of money are those who already have lots of money and basically don’t have to work at all. Strange as it may be, money breeds. Is Santorum too stupid to know this?

The case of Michele Bachmann is almost too complicated to deal with, at least on an outpatient basis. It is difficult to fathom if she is really as stupid as she appears to be or is just blurting out whatever pops into her head at the moment without giving it any thought. She has said so many stupid things it is hard to keep track of them all. The one thing she has recently said leads me to believe she really is just plain stupid. She announced that Iran is building a nuclear bomb (for which there is no proof), something that many people seem to believe, but she then goes on to say they are going to use it to destroy Israel and also use it against the United States. If she just made this up to please the Tea Party, okay, but if she really believes this, she is truly stupid (or perhaps delusional).

I don’t believe Ron Paul is stupid, but some of his ideas are stupid. The idea that we could return to the gold standard, for example, is really a pretty stupid idea. On the other hand, his ideas about Foreign Aid and intervention are, I think, not stupid at all, just plain unrealistic. But what is truly stupid are his ideas about trying to live and exist in the modern world with essentially no government, or at least a very minimal government. While it may be true we managed to survive back in the days of minimal government, what with shooting and killing each other basically at will, being fiercely independent and jumping claims, stealing horses and cattle, and hanging those who angered our particular mob, I doubt such a system would work very well these days. I bet we couldn’t even find a corral in which to stage a decent gunfight.

As far as Sarah Palin, Donald Trump, and Herman Cain are concerned, their very idea they could be President is stupid. As most of the Republican candidates also appear to not believe in evolution, global warming, environmental protections, and apparently science in general, they are, in my opinion, too stupid and therefore unfit for high office. Furthermore, the thought of any of them with their finger on the nuclear trigger, waiting to hear from god, is more than I can bear.

As if there were safety in stupidity alone.

Henry David Thoreau

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