Friday, September 3, 2010

Why So Many Idiots?

I was bored with the station I had on while tooling down the westbound beltline Wednesday afternoon, so I flipped the station and heard Dennis Miller riffing with Dana Carvey. Funny stuff. Then they started talking politics. Carvey dissed Sarah Palin who was raising eyebrows that day by announcing a speaking date in Iowa (think caucuses). Miller – supposedly the “thinking man’s comedian” – sprung to Palin’s defense when Carvey brought up the notorious Katie Couric interview.

Miller opined that Palin had just been “dragged” down from Alaska; was new to the public scene; was no doubt tired; not used to the media spotlight; and further opined that she’s now become a formidable force in American politics.

Among mouth-breathing morons, I suppose.

I went back and looked at the Couric interview; and the one with Charlie Gibson. It’s very easy to find them on YouTube. Couric: “What newspapers and magazines do you read?” Palin: “All of ‘em; any of ‘em; lots of ‘em…” Go watch it for yourself. Watch the Gibson interview, for which she was carefully prepped by John McCain’s staff, and tell me what you think about her answer to Gibson’s question about the Bush doctrine.

This was NOT “gotcha” journalism in either case. These were run-of-the-mill questions you’d ask to get to know anyone running for the second-highest office in the land, not some parsing of prior public comments by the candidate. And Miller chalks it up to jet lag and inexperience? By the way, Dennis, what magazines and newspapers do YOU read?

Then that evening I saw a local TV guy interview some cretin named Dave Westlake, who apparently wants to represent Wisconsin in the United States Congress. He believes there’s plenty of scientific evidence that the earth was created less than six thousand years ago. (Apparently the media have been covering it up by not reporting it.) Where do they find these whack-jobs who run for public office, and whatever happened to FACTS?

The Reds beat the Brewers 6-1 Wednesday night and Cuban left-hander Aroldis Chapman got his first major league win. His top pitch speed was a blazing 103 MPH. These are what reporters and most people would call FACTS. They are not subject to debate.

David Dwight Eisenhower was born in Denison TX on October 14th, 1890, and he reversed the order of his given names when he enrolled in West Point. He was the 34th President of the United States and the last President to be born in the 19th century. These are FACTS, and they’re not subject to debate.

But where the current President was born, despite the existence of a certified birth certificate, and the religion he has practiced for decades, are now apparently subject to debate. By morons. The kind of people who think radio-carbon dating is some sort of mystic hoo-doo that has nothing to do with settled science. The sort of people who think there’s some vast left-wing conspiracy that produced a fake Obama birth certificate. “He’s an AY-rab”, as that woman in Minnesota said to John McCain on the ’08 campaign trail. (Much to his credit, McCain corrected her immediately.)

Russ Feingold runs ads saying Ron Johnson (who has enough problems with honesty on simple FACTS like when Pacur was founded) wants to drill for oil in the great lakes – even though our Junior Senator knows damn well Johnson advocates nothing of the sort. Pandering to the morons.

My God, this nation is in trouble.


  1. Dennis Miller has no credibility as a pundit. During his season in the "Monday Night Football" booth, he blurted out: "The ground can't cause a fumble? Where is that written in stone?"

    Any football fan can tell you that; how could Miller, who was hired to comment on NFL football games, not know that basic rule?

    On his HBO show, he read scripted political rants off of a teleprompter. That fooled people into thinking he knows what he's talking about. He doesn't, but that doesn't stop him from talking a lot.

  2. Meanwhile, in a dusty waste land called Arizona, political operatives presented their Governor, Jan Brewer. In an interview showcasing her mental decline, ( possibly
    Alzheimer) Governor Brewer pleaded for help, severing ties with the reality she was performing in. I felt it was cruel for her political handlers to put an obviously impaired older person into that spotlight, they should be horse whipped.

  3. Our blogger has given clear evidence that someone has been pouring bleach in the gene pool.

    MEMO TO ASKEES: Asking someone which newspapers they read is a trick question only if the askee doesn't read any - and probably could not name a newspaper. A lot of people don't read newspapers, and so are able to sympathize, because they couldn't name one either.

    Charlie Gibson probably wouldn't have called it the "Bush Doctrine" if the White House and Faux News hadn't been using the term incessantly. To refresh the memory of anyone who, quite understandably, may be mentally blocking that sorry bit of American history, what Gibson wanted to know is if Palin thought it was America's duty to attack countries and start wars preemptively. Essentially, do unto others before they can do it unto you.

    If some mean TV person asks you, on camera, a question about a subject of which you are clueless, tell him you do not understand the question and ask him to rephrase it. That will throw off the cadence of the interview long enough to give you a chance to run for the tall grass.

    FUN FACT: David Dwight Eisenhower became Dwight David Eisenhower. The very same thing happened to Henry David Thoreau - who his parents thought of as David Henry Thoreau. What is it about the name David?

    JESUS HORSES: Ah, yes. Those fossilized dinosaur bones, and the remains of much earlier creatures, are the product of a mischievous God who greatly accelerated the process and laid the evidence in discrete layers, while carefully seeing to it that no human bones were included. To test our faith, I suppose.

    Perhaps Mr. Westlake, who seems to take a relaxed view of what constitutes evidence, could modify the lyrics of an old song (the original said 10,000 years) for use as his campaign jingle:

    I was born [six] thousand years ago
    And there's nothing in this world that I don't know
    I saw Peter, Paul, and Moses playing ring around the roses
    And I'll lick the guy that says it isn't so

  4. There's licit room-for-discussion on the "when was Pacur founded" question. Pacur is one thing; the buy-back from the venture cap guys is another; and the original company, which ALSO manufactured pallets, is a third.

    How long should he spend answering the question?

  5. Colonel,

    >> Miller opined that Palin had just been “dragged” down from Alaska; was new to the public scene; was no doubt tired; not used to the media spotlight; and further opined that she’s now become a formidable force in American politics.

    >> Among mouth-breathing morons, I suppose. <<

    Miller, though, was also the only conservative pundit I ever heard who gave Cindy Sheehan a huge benefit of the doubt. I heard him interview her on his radio show and he was a complete gentleman, acknowledging and honoring the sacrifice of her son.

    He is not your average conservative pundit.

    As I've said before, good politicians are "good" because they can say nothing with flair and deflect uncomfortable questions...besides having an unquenchable desire to be elected.

    This is not to defend people like Palin or Biden. I'm just a bit tired of the focus on stupidity. If one looks for intelligence in elected officials one will be disappointed.

    The one exception would, I think, be Bill Clinton. There was one smart hombre.

    But Carter? Obama? What makes them better than the President whose intelligence everyone loves to mock: Reagan?

    The Town Crank