Friday, January 14, 2011

Perhaps It Takes One To Know One

I've noticed in the last few years the increasingly common use of the word idiot in matters of politics and philosophy. Frankly, I do not consider most of my philosophical opposites to be anything akin to idiots. Most are possessed of good minds and, often, even good hearts.

The rift between our views generally stems from differing basic premises. That is generally in the realm of how we view authority, and the individual.

I remember during the last election getting update emails from candidate Lutz campaign people in which they called the opponent an idiot, among other things. This took the place of expanding upon why his views, or statement in question, demonstrated reason that he shouldn't be elected, and why I should vote for the grandstander, Lutz. His first name eludes me at the moment.

I do not consider Lutz an idiot at all. I do not agree with his policies or view of government function.

I've seen the same trend in all sorts of discourse on the internet, and even heard it when out and about and someone makes a comment regarding people with whom they disagree. In some cases there may be nothng else to say, but, in most cases, there is real room for discussion. Why is a person's view wrong?

Often, I hear people claim that the tea party people are idiots. Why is this so? And are all of them the same? I've heard well spoken people claim that this movement only includes a push for limited government, cutting spending, and not raising taxes to reduce the deficit and debt. Allegedly, according to those people, they support reducing the power and size of government.
Now, many of the tea people may espouse other causes, but if the actual tea party line is as stated above, I do not find that idiotic. Or even distasteful.

Maybe it is when people dress in garb from the 1770's and such at rallies, the message is lost in the peculiarity of the messenger. I suppose it is like those who think God and Jesus spoke in old English, so when they get involved in matters holy, they might begin a statement with "And so the Lord sayeth unto them...", as if it is holier to use archaic language which wasn't even the tongue of the times in question.

Then again, maybe the dress up bit is a sort of tribute to admired people of the past. I'm not big on Halloween, so masquerade opportunities are rarely seized by me.

Whatever the case, someone can dress up like a she-wolf in a tutu, and if he espouses a view that governmental power ought to be limited to bare essentials and individual rights be as broad as civilly possible, then I have to agree. He's not pushing his sense of fashion on me so what do I care. It is the substance of the argument and belief system that is in question, and I might agree with it.

There are those who feel it is government's job to ensure the benevolence of all of us by deciding who should get what help and how income ought to be spent and distributed. I personally think all the middle men that entails causes as many or more problems than it solves, and I see it as a form of theft. However, I don't think those of that mind are idiots. They just think that people, left to their own devices, would leave their less fortunate countrymen bleeding by the side of the road. And they assume that the citizenry wouldn't fight when they should, so they manage ways to get them to fight wars which they otherwise might not. There is a high degree of deception involved, and the larger the body of authority, and broader its scope, the more prevalent the false information and pretense.

As far as people bleeding in the ditch, my view is that they are most likely in that condition due to the abuses of powers that be. Probably got beat up by El Cajon Highway patrol for having a Southern accent.

It could be I find that trend unpleasant because I, myself, am more idiotic than I would like, and fear the times when anyone might notice. On the other hand, it may be that it is a defense mechanism; if you can't articulate your position, or why the other person's position is no good, and you feel the need to please a certain social group, then just calling the assumed enemy idiots may be your only out. It leaves you appearing to view yourself as superior, and with any luck, others will buy it.

There are many people in high places who aren't all that smart. But they aren't idiots. Just people of barely average brain power, and fluid values, who are good at whoring.

It does amuse me a bit that people actually started throwing around talk of IQ, in recent political battles, without having a clue what someone's actual numbers were. And in some cases tossing out challenges like, "I'll put my IQ up against his any day". That sure proves a lot.

High IQ neither ensures your goodness nor your ability to deal with civilization. If I'm not mistaken, Ted Bundy, and probably many other psychos, had a high IQ.

Anyway, labeling people "idiots" doesn't serve to convince me they are wrong, stupid, or anything else, without a little more evidence. Even idiots can sometimes be right, and even geniuses can be wrong and evil. Come to think of it, if a very rich idiot offered me a high paying job doing next to nothing, I'd be his or her biggest fan.

Most of the problems come down to two basic views: and let live, 2.I live as I like and you must live as I like


  1. Recently, with all the fuzzy feel-good warmth in education trends, I got to wondering whether it is even permissible to mention IQ when it comes to education. Do they even test it any more, at the risk of making someone feel bad? Or is it dismissed as racist, imperialist, elitist suppresion?

  2. Wish I had a warm fuzzy feel good education.
    Lunatics and perverts dominated the S. Fl. education system in my day.

  3. "Why is a person's view wrong? " According to my ex ~ I'm always wrong...he's always right. Ha.
    My opinion never counts with him. We are opposites in everything political. I'm just glad he's gone from my life now.


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