Swans Commentary » swans.com July 13, 2009  



Palin IQ Test


by Joel S. Hirschhorn





(Swans - July 13, 2009)   Most of us (certainly those writing about politics and government) have the arrogance to believe that a huge fraction of Americans turns out to be complete dumb asses, incredibly ignorant, and chronically stupid. How else to explain how the worst imaginable members of Congress keep getting reelected, how true political reformers never stand a chance of getting nominated for president by the two major parties, and how the public never seems to be able to get angry enough about being manipulated and screwed by the two-party plutocracy and its wealthy supporters and beneficiaries to rise up in revolt?

Now we have a simple IQ test to verify whether someone is truly beneath contempt as a citizen and who should be banned from voting and participating in any conversation about politics and anything serious. All we need to know is whether someone still admires Sarah Palin. If they do, then they are certifiably dumb as frozen Alaskan soil.

After all, how can anyone with even a small fraction of functioning brain cells that actually listens to Palin's statements still think she has any talent, capabilities, or smarts about anything that is important? Listening to Palin's confused butchering of the English language is equivalent to listening to a very young, pre-school child try to speak intelligently about the refusal of Congress to obey Article V of the Constitution and give us the first convention of state delegates to consider possible Constitutional amendments. You just wouldn't expect a very young child to construct coherent sentences and deliver understandable messages about complex subjects that you could take seriously. And that is how I feel every time I listen to Palin speak. Any random selection of a high school graduate would probably produce a more intelligent discussion of political issues.

Of course the Congress and state capitols are filled with good looking but downright stupid politicians with generally pleasing personalities. But that is no reason whatsoever to take Sarah Palin seriously, either as a conservative or Republican. Sorry, no excuses should ever be made for her startling ignorance on just about everything that matters. Palin is brain dead and so is everyone else that still thinks she merits any respect or support. And now we are told that after she walks away from being governor of Alaska that she can make millions of dollars by being paid huge amounts for talks, a book, and possibly radio and TV shows. If that is correct, and apparently it is, then there must be millions of Americans who fail the Palin IQ test.

This depresses me. My already highly negative and cynical view of Americans drops even lower if someone as moronic as Palin can make millions based on what she has said and accomplished. This is the epitome of the dumbing down of America. But perhaps it is just on a par with the endless media coverage of the Michael Jackson death celebration. Add in the continuing soap opera parade of politicians caught cheating on their wives, especially sanctimonious Republicans, and we have a picture of contemporary American culture that is enough to make any half-way intelligent person nauseous. This must surely be the end of what once promised to be a first rate civilization. Never mind the eternal quest for a more perfect union. I would settle for a society with a modicum of critical thinking.

Wait. I just heard the new results from a respected environmental group that basically concludes the $16 billion spent yearly by Americans on bottled water is literally pissing away good money with little benefit over drinking tap water. Here too, what we witness is how thoroughly stupid so many millions of Americans are. So somewhere are probably countless people who admire Sarah Palin, are totally broken up over Michael Jackson's death, try and rationalize the infidelity of major politicians, and have a large stock of bottled water to console themselves with. Ughhhhh.....


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About the Author

Joel S. Hirschhorn was formerly a full professor at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, and senior staffer at the Congressional Office of Technology Assessment and the National Governors Association. He now writes about politics and government, and is the author of Delusional Democracy: Fixing the Republic Without Overthrowing the Government and Sprawl Kills: How Blandburbs Steal Your Time, Health And Money.



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Swans -- ISSN: 1554-4915
URL for this work: http://www.swans.com/library/art15/joelh08.html
Published July 13, 2009