Trump's presidency shows America's 'concentration of imbeciles has surpassed any safe level': Ex-Fox News editor

  

Category:  News & Politics

Via:  john-russell  •  3 weeks ago  •  9 comments

By:   Raw Story - Celebrating Years of Independent Journalism

Trump's presidency shows America's 'concentration of imbeciles has surpassed any safe level': Ex-Fox News editor
Former Fox News political editor Chris Stirewalt, who was fired in the wake of the 2020 presidential election, has written a new essay for The Dispatch in which he argues that the Trump presidency has exposed a deeply troubling mental deterioration in the United States.Specifically, Stirewalt looks ...

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Former Fox News political editor Chris Stirewalt, who was fired in the wake of the 2020 presidential election, has written a new essay for The Dispatch in which he argues that the Trump presidency has exposed a deeply troubling mental deterioration in the United States.

Specifically, Stirewalt looks at a wide range of recent events, including the Capitol riots and anti-vaxxers' efforts to disrupt vaccine distribution in Los Angeles, and concludes that America has become dangerously ignorant and stupid.

"Foolishness is nothing new in America," he writes. "This is the country of P.T. Barnum, medicine shows and pet rocks, after all. But our current concentration of imbeciles has surpassed any kind of safe level."

Stirewalt lays much of the blame on America's education system, and he blames both Republicans and Democrats for failing to take educating America's students seriously.

"Humanitarian concern for students being dumped into and out of facilities that look like medium-security correctional institutions and act like daycares might not be enough to renew interest in the issue of education," he writes. "But perhaps the consequences of plopping generations of wet clay into the hands of kooks, charlatans and demagogues will do the trick."

Read the whole essay here.


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JohnRussell
Professor Principal
1  seeder  JohnRussell    3 weeks ago

thedispatch.com   /p/the-dangers-of-the-derp-state

The Dangers of the Derp State

Chris Stirewalt
5-7 minutes

https%3A%2F%2Fbucketeer-e05bbc84-baa3-437e-9518-adb32be77984.s3.amazonaws.com%2Fpublic%2Fimages%2Fde1804df-ffc1-4a57-962b-4227d30f601f_4500x3003.jpeg (Photo by Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images)

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One of the aphorisms of our populist era goes that Donald Trump is more of a symptom than a cause. Fair enough. I’ve certainly said it many times myself. But for it to be more than just a way to dodge nettlesome issues, we have to be clear about the diagnosis.

As Trump’s second impeachment trial gets underway, it’s crucial to know which causes and effects we mean. Since Trump re-emerged on the political scene a decade ago hawking Obama birtherism like a box of frozen steaks, he and his antic carnival of grift have been credited with and blamed for everything from “ bringing peace and prosperity ” to the world all the way down to   dating woes .

I don’t pretend to know everything that caused the nation to be such ripe pickings for a hustler like Trump. We all know some of the causes: cultural starvation that created a yearning for rabid partisanship as a simulacrum, economic transformation, weak political parties, atomization of media, the ease of employing mob tactics in the digital age, and on and on. In fact, Trump has been a big and messy enough symptom that one can find his origins in almost any longstanding ill he or she wishes. Confirmation bias didn’t just help make Trump possible; it has confused the work of an honest, complete diagnosis.

This is the kind of algebraic thinking that makes it so hard to address serious problems in America. If one already knows the product of the equation is that their opponents are to blame, solving for X is just a matter of looking for a root cause that originates on the other side. Satisfied that it’s somebody else’s fault, the mind closes with a pleasing “snap.”

The truth about complicated matters such as these is seldom satisfying since no side or group can escape completely unscathed. Indeed, the prevalence of this motivated reasoning is in itself evidence of one of the leading causes of Trump’s acquisition of power and the enthusiastic support by millions for his abuses of it.

Exhibit A:   Activists disrupt the administration of coronavirus vaccinations at Dodgers’ Stadium. One of the   motivating factors   cited by the so-called anti-vaxxers was the recent death of homerun king Hank Aaron at the age of 86—more than a decade beyond the life expectancy for an American male. Aaron died three weeks after he volunteered for a public inoculation to encourage other seniors to follow suit. Notorious crank Robert Kennedy Jr. said it was part of “a wave of suspicious deaths among [the] elderly.”

Exhibit B:   The government of the District of Columbia, a perpetual motion machine for patronage, goes to court   seeking an injunction   against a union that represents Washington’s teachers. The aim was to prevent the American Federation of Teachers from striking to prevent schools from reopening for in-person learning. Government workers, especially teachers, are the political behemoth of local politics in our nation’s capital. For city leaders to bite the hand that feeds them means something is seriously out of phase. Here’s what: Despite   all of the evidence   presented by public health officials not only that schools can reopen safely but that opening them is essential, teachers’ unions are still opposed.

Exhibit C:   Timothy Wilks, 20, is shot and killed outside of Nashville’s Urban Air Trampoline and Adventure Park. Police   told reporters   that Wilks was trying to create a viral video of himself staging a fake robbery prank for his YouTube channel. Apparently unaware of the hilarity of having a stranger run at you and your friends with butcher knives, one of Wilks’ intended foils drew a pistol and   shot him dead .

The evidence comes from across the country. It transcends divisions of politics, economics, education, ethnicity and gender. You’ve got the nephew of a former president all the way down to a post-adolescent YouTube wannabe. What connects them—the same thing that threatens the health of the republic—is rank imbecility.

Foolishness is nothing new in America. This is the country of P.T. Barnum, medicine shows and pet rocks, after all. But our current concentration of imbeciles has surpassed any kind of safe level. How we became a nation of so many dupes and fools is a matter at least as complicated as the causes of Trump’s presidency. What stands out, and as the sad state of Washington’s schools suggests, is that we are suffering the consequences from generations of Americans who are both undereducated and miseducated. This many millions of nincompoops didn’t show up overnight. They have been stumbling out of our nation’s failing schools for decades.

If we are sincere about wanting to stop the next attack on the Capitol, then there could be no more urgent work than rescuing our students from the schools that fail them. It has not been so long since education was a top priority for both parties, but it can hardly compete with other issues that can more effectively be used as wedges and for which simplistic solutions can more easily be offered.

Humanitarian concern for students being dumped into and out of facilities that look like medium-security correctional institutions and act like daycares might not be enough to renew interest in the issue of education. But perhaps the consequences of plopping generations of wet clay into the hands of kooks, charlatans and demagogues will do the trick.

Chris Stirewalt is a contributing editor for   The Dispatch.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
1.1  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  JohnRussell @1    3 weeks ago
If we are sincere about wanting to stop the next attack on the Capitol, then there could be no more urgent work than rescuing our students from the schools that fail them. It has not been so long since education was a top priority for both parties, but it can hardly compete with other issues that can more effectively be used as wedges and for which simplistic solutions can more easily be offered.

I seriously doubt if schools are the major culprit in the national creation of imbeciles. I would put You Tube, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc, much higher on the list. And special shout out to Breitbart, Infowars, Daily Caller, Gateway Pundit , etc for the flood of morons. And the most popular shows on television and movies often have to do with unreality. Horror films, alternate reality films, stories that suggest reality is a fluid concept. Many of the most popular programs on tv and streaming have to do with reality being changeable. 

The guy with the horns on his head and the painted face walked into the Senate chamber as if it was the most natural thing in the world.  Our popular culture created this idea in his head, not poor schools. 

 
 
 
Sean Treacy
Professor Guide
2  Sean Treacy    3 weeks ago

Much like the number of covid deaths today reflect the spread of the disease weeks ago, today's political culture is the result of what happened years ago.  

"that we are suffering the consequences from generations of Americans who are both undereducated and miseducated. This many millions of nincompoops didn’t show up overnight. They have been stumbling out of our nation’s failing schools for decades."

Teaching narratives rather than facts, prioritizing racial theory over critical thinking all have consequences. As our educational system hews ever closer to the far left the problems continue to grow.  A system where one can go from trying to kill police and soldiers while advocating the violent overthrow the government to becoming an influential educator without really changing his beliefs is broken, possibly beyond repair.   

 
 
 
JBB
PhD Principal
2.1  JBB  replied to  Sean Treacy @2    3 weeks ago

Our problems stem from people merging their irrational magical beliefs with politics into the gop...

 
 
 
FLYNAVY1
Professor Expert
2.1.1  FLYNAVY1  replied to  JBB @2.1    3 weeks ago

Ours was a secular government up until the election of Ronal Regan.....  Since then the belief and faith in things of non-science have become main stream in the GQP

 
 
 
Gordy327
PhD Principal
3  Gordy327    3 weeks ago
and concludes that America has become dangerously ignorant and stupid.

It's been that way for years now. 

 
 
 
Trotsky's Spectre
Freshman Quiet
4  Trotsky's Spectre    3 weeks ago
'Chris Stirewalt, who was fired in the wake of the 2020 presidential election, has written a new essay for The Dispatch in which he argues that the Trump presidency has exposed a deeply troubling mental deterioration in the United States.'

Stirewalt needed a Trump presidunce-y to see that? jrSmiley_88_smiley_image.gif Perhaps that was why he was employed by Faux Spews...

 
 
 
Buzz of the Orient
Professor Principal
5  Buzz of the Orient    3 weeks ago

Although my view may now be from afar, it was for most of my life a view from next door.  The story I have to tell goes back more than 6 decades.  Some of us teenagers who lived in Ontario within an hour of Buffalo used to spend time during the summer vacation at Crystal Beach, Ontario, on the north shore of Lake Erie, and teenagers from Buffalo and environs used to join us there.  We would compare notes about high school, and the kids from Buffalo would be bandying around their exam marks of 100% or 99% and others would bitch about the fact that all they could get was 98%.  We listened in amazement, because for us it was a struggle to reach the honours grade of 75% and anyone who got 80 was a genius and 90 was mensa a mark seen by very few.  

I think that told me something.

 
 
 
freepress
Freshman Silent
6  freepress    3 weeks ago

Too many people on the right failing to understand that the last 50 years of giving Republicans power by constantly voting them in state, local and federal offices has given them the very policies and the government that created an unfair system. They are essentially angry at themselves for handing out money, votes and power to Republicans who created everything they claim they are angry about. People refuse to blame themselves for how they voted, so they pick the easiest scapegoat by blaming Dems for Republican policies, Republican power, and Republican elected officials who ignored them other than grifting their money and lying to them to get votes.

 
 
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