Sunday, October 4, 2009

Back to the Future, Part LXIX

From Wil Wheaton's blog (he calls it "the coolest picture you'll see all day," and he may be right, but you never know) via Homo Superior (in my interior, but from the skin out I am Homo Sapien too).

Also with a curtsey to Homo Superior, this amusing little screed from the San Francisco Chronicle:

To the educated mind, it seems inconceivable that millions of people will choose rabid ignorance and childish fantasy over, say, a polar bear. Permafrost. Rocks. Nag Hammadi. But they will, and they do. Faced with this mountain of factual obviousness, the bewildered fundamentalist will merely leap back as if you just jabbed him with a flaming homosexual cattle prod, and then fall into a swoon about how neat it is that angels can fly.
But it's not just the fundamentalists. This Rule of Idiocy also explains why, when you show certain jumpy, conservative Americans the irrefutable facts about, say, skyrocketing health care costs that are draining their bank accounts, and then show how Obama's rather modest overhaul is meant to save members of all ages and genders and party affiliations a significant amount of money while providing basic insurance for their family, they, too, will scream and kick like a child made to eat a single bite of broccoli.
Remember, facts do not matter. The actual Obama plan itself does not matter.
Indeed, it's not just the fundamentalists! So how do I talk to a complete idiot like this one (again, merci a HS)?

We have a pretty good idea of the Republican plan for the next three years: Don't let Obama do anything. What kills me is that that's the Democrats' plan, too.
It's useless to confront idiots like this with mere facts, like Obama's coziness with the corporate elites, his eagerness to make sure that Change You Can Believe In doesn't inconvenience them in any way, his readiness to pander to and appease the Republicans (however futilely -- what do you call it when someone keeps trying to please someone whose whole existence is dedicated to rejecting him? anyone? anyone?), his continuation of Bush II policies and personnel. They just know that the Little Father is trying to do the right thing, but the Evil Boyar won't let him.

Or a complete idiot like this (do we detect a pattern here?):

[Sarah Palin's] emergence revealed that America is in a period of decadence and unseriousness, even as its decline as an economic and world power accelerated and its moral authority crumbled.
Okay, I know that Sully is like too young to remember someone like Spiro Agnew, but he's old enough to remember Dan Quayle. And leave aside the minor point that the US has never really had any moral authority (slavery, the genocide of the pre-Columbian Americans, and all the succeeding imperial adventures from the Philippines to Iraq and Afghanistan), and the even minor-er point that Sullivan's own career (and that of other empty-headed young rightwingers in the supposedly liberal media) is testimony to the decline of American journalism and intelligence if you want to believe in such a thing. The thing to remember is that Palin's emergence showed that Americans aren't all that dumb: they rejected her and her doddering running mate decisively, along with the party that nominated them. And even now, with Fox News and HarperCollins and other interests that hope to make a buck from her even if she never holds political office again, and despite the wishful thinking of the faithful, she's not doing as well as you'd expect (via) if she really epitomized the present state of American culture. I wouldn't want to misunderestimate her, but I think Sully was inflating her significance for his own alarmist reasons. And in doing so, he extended her life in the media. As Oscar Wilde said, The only thing worse than being talked about is not being talked about. Keep it coming, idiots!

Finally, this public service announcement, thanks to Wil Wheaton.