Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Put The Rock Down Stupid!

One of the few things in life that constantly surprises and annoys me is my fellow man's capacity for aggressive ignorance and stupidity. This ability (or perhaps more accurately liability) crosses all local, state, and even national borders and can be found in every race, creed, and color on the planet. Likewise, it's influence can be found in almost every phase of everyday life. Science and Religion, Finance and Politics, nothing can seem to escape its all-encompassing grasp.

Here in the US, there seem to be locations where this condition seems to affect larger percentages of the population (hot spots, if you will) to our joint detriment. Cities along the western coast of the United States for example, from Seattle to Los Angeles comprise one of these areas; with the areas surrounding the San Francisco Bay seeming to be a local focus for such behavior. (This can be no real surprise to anyone however, as the desire to live on an active seismic fault line can rarely be considered anything but stupid.) 


The level of stupidity seems to diminish as you move east through the country, with only a few concentrations of it in the mountains and the Midwest. Boulder seems to fit the bill in the high country, and unaccountably Toledo, Ohio seems to act as a magnet in the Midwest. The rest are easily identifiable, and tend to cluster in the vicinity of universities and state capitals. Stupidity again increases as the Atlantic Ocean approaches (Is there a relation between water and stupidity? Perhaps a government study is in order.), but the stupidity in the East is often overwhelmed by an appalling level of anger that seems to pervade this particular coast. (Perhaps the stupid people there are upset that they have no active fault lines, I don't know.)

The absolute Mecca of stupidity however is to be found on the East Coast, in Washington DC. Much like that city revered in the Muslim religion, stupid people who are able, often make a pilgrimage to this fountain of ignorance and stupidity. Many even give up valuable careers in the real world and spend a great deal of their own money in order to obtain positions of employment there, perhaps for no other reason than simply to be near what for them is hallowed ground. And it is in Washington that stupidity raises itself beyond any mere amateur standing and even beyond the professional level. No, it is only the all-stars who can play and survive in this league, and anything less is brutally weeded out every couple of years.

Now I would be loathe to mention any of this and quite frankly wouldn't care about such arcane practices and apparently misguided religious fervor except that the aggressive stupidity of those in Washington has had an increasing impact on my attempts to avoid stupidity in my own life. While I may be as guilty as the next man in my ignorance, I would like to hope that at least some of mine is inadvertent. With a few rare others that I know, I attempt to avoid acts of random stupid behavior that seem to plague society. 


This attempt, which is as difficult as tip-toeing through a mine field, would be a great deal easier if those reaching this "Elysium Field" of blissful ignorance were not randomly throwing rocks into the area around us as we made our weary way through life. The resultant detonations caused by this interference multiply and magnify the missteps that we are oh so carefully trying to avoid, and make choosing a clear path forward just that much more difficult. So hey, if you idiots want to hang together great, but the rest of us would really appreciate it if you could find ways to LEAVE US THE HELL ALONE!

Now as the coming election approaches, many of you are going to take up the challenge of voting and present a stupid person with the opportunity to fulfill their heart's desire. I won't ask you to keep them from going, but I will beg you on behalf of those of us continuing to make our way through life's demilitarized zone to try and maintain or slightly reduce the level of stupidity in DC as you make your choices (you know, kind of like reducing your carbon footprint to save the planet). And for God's sake, do what you can to keep them from picking up rocks as they go.



Stupidity cannot be cured with money, or through education, or by legislation. Stupidity is not a sin, the victim can't help being stupid. But stupidity is the only universal capital crime; the sentence is death, there is no appeal and execution is carried out automatically and without pity. - Robert Heinlein


UPDATE:
One of my fellow bloggers has taken a different tack on this question, blaming karma instead of ignorance. I recommend its reading as a slightly different take on what many of us are beginning to recognize as an impending issue of major proportions.



2 comments:

Hooda Thunkit said...

Tim,

Methinks that Mr. Heinlein's thoughts are a bit outdated...

From what I see, Stupidity cannot be cured with money, for indeed money, and particularly how it is spend BREEDS stupidity, through education and legislation.

The so-called victims are raised, from cradle to grave, to be, act and to vote stupid, for they are products of having been bred by stupid people, raised by stupid people and are taught by functionally stupid teachers.

As for this stupidity, it is all planned and produced to keep us stupid; and that's the way that the Gubmint likes it, for it serves their purposes.

The only way to avoid being stupid, becoming stupid yourself and breeding stupid is to bypass the public educational and support systems and educate yourself and your family members through a system that treasures and rewards achievement.

In a sense, I advocate educating yourself in the ways of achievement and capitalism, breed with only like-minded creatures and raise your young with strong capitalist ideas and goals.

By doing so you will achieve, and extract yourself from a life free of ignorance.

You will however, be unfairly burdened with supporting the rest of the ignorant sheeple (but, its markedly better than being one of them...).

Tim Higgins said...

I think perhaps you have misread the late Mr. Heinlein. He says what you do and more. I would say that he sees no cure for stupidity that Nature does not provide, that being the thinning of the herd through natural selection. Our problem is that the stupid people in DC have managed to interfere with Mother Nature herself by providing suuports for their comrades outside of the logic free zone.

No longer is being stupid a death sentence merely waiting to be carried out. Now it appears to be a badge of honor that politicians and sheeple alike seem to wear with pride.

Since it appears that we can't kill them and we can't keep them out of government, I simply wish to mitigate their impact on journey through life as much as I can.

On a side note, while I was educated in private schools most of my life, I was able to instill a sense of survival for my publicly educated offspring through cynicism and a love of reading. As you rightly say, self-education is the answer.