Thursday, February 9, 2012

Little-known facts about America

"You know, we're the only people on Earth who put our hand over our heart during the playing of the national anthem." Heh, heh. Maybe Romney means that we're the only people on Earth who put our hand over our heart during the playing of the American national anthem.

Actually, I think that Republicans have become so used to just making up their own facts that they do it automatically these days. Remember, they're all faith-based, so they just believe whatever they want to believe. To Republicans, facts are whatever you want them to be.

Republicans were not always this way, but their notorious "Southern strategy" filled the party not just with racists, but with religious fundamentalists, conspiracy enthusiasts, white supremacists, and other kooks. They took all of the Democrat's kooks - mostly, those old "Dixiecrats" who opposed racial integration - and combined them with the John Birchers and other kooks already in the GOP.

So now, the Republican base is full of people who think reality is whatever they want it to be. These people have their own "facts." That makes it difficult to work with them, because we don't even live in the same reality. If they don't like what evidence shows us about the real world, they just believe something different.

This is obvious when it comes to science, but it's increasingly obvious in politics, too. Romney isn't the only candidate who just makes up facts. All of the Republicans do that. And it doesn't hurt them in the primary campaign - just the reverse, in fact. The Republican base wants to hear what it wants to believe.

And in the rare instance where the news media (not Fox, of course) call them on this, that's just evidence to the faithful of the "lamestream" media's liberal bias. Of course, journalists rarely do call them on such things. That's left to comedy shows like this.


Jeff said...

I thought I'd re-post this because it seems more fitting to this topic. I'ts called "The 7 Types Of Republican Idiots:"

On the subject of Romney's take on "American Exceptionalism," I'll see your Jimmy Kimmel and raise you a Lewis Black.

WCG said...

Thanks, Jeff. Lewis Black is always funny.

Re. that first link, I saw it in your earlier comment, but I was still thinking about it. (That's OK, because I like to think.) I just wasn't sure what I thought.

That "7 Types of Republican Idiots" is funny, and it makes some sense, but I guess I'm a bit uncomfortable with it. For one thing, it's not actually true. People who hold idiotic beliefs aren't necessarily idiots.

For example, that Matt Dillahunty at the Atheist Experience is a really bright guy, and I love to hear him speak. But he was a true believer for most of his life. Obviously, he didn't miraculously get more intelligent, all of a sudden. He was just as smart back when he believed crazy things.

The other thing that bothers me is that it's too similar to how the right-wing behaves. Some time ago, I had an anonymous reader leave me a three-word comment, "Your (sic) an idiot." Yeah, I thought that was pretty funny, but even with correct spelling, I would have instantly dismissed it.

I don't care if people call me an idiot, but it's hardly a very intelligent comment, not by itself. It certainly doesn't give me anything to think about. On the other hand, I've had excellent comments here from people who I thought were completely wrong. In fact, I think I'd rather have comments from people who disagree with me, at least if they make me think.

So,... I don't know. Yes, I call people idiots - or the equivalent - sometimes, though I'd prefer to just call their beliefs idiotic. And I'm often willing to ridicule ridiculous people. But most people who believe ridiculous things are just wrong, not crazy and not stupid.

If someone makes an idiot of himself, I'm quite willing to point that out. But I'd prefer not to call everyone who disagrees with me an idiot.

Don't expect me to be entirely consistent about this, though. :)