Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Stupids Step Out

Do you know the Harry Allard series of children's books including, notably, "The Stupids Step Out?" in which, as I recall, the Stupid family goes on holiday with their cat, Fido, driving and their dog, Kitty, perched on Fido's head? Very stupid. Good illustrations. Pretty funny.

In Haaretz**, Chemi Shalev depicts the election of Donald Trump as a sort of continuation, in real-time electoral terms, of the Stupid saga: as in the Stupids Drive To the Polls.

Shalev lists the reasons we all, ad yawningly, adduce for Trump: "Hillary Clinton was a bad candidate with tons of excess baggage; Barack Obama ignored white middle class America; coastal liberal elites lost touch with America’s heartland; the media ignored white men’s rage; the Obama coalition didn’t show up at the polls etc. . . . 

Then he cuts to the chase: "But there is one overarching factor that everyone knows contributed most of all to the Trump sensation. There is one sine qua non without which none of this would have been possible. There is one standalone reason that, like a big dodo in the room, no one dares mention, ironically, because of political correctness. You know what I’m talking about: Stupidity. Dumbness. Idiocy. Whatever you want to call it: Dufusness Supreme."

We’re not supposed to say that, are we, because it might offend the stupids who elected Trump, a billionaire lying thief, contra their class, gender, human, even evangelical interests. We might, just be referring to the irreducible and undeniable stupidity factor, be accused of elitist condescension.

But why should I fear calling out the stupids? What can they do to me, that they haven't already, by electing Donald Trump?

If only the calamities he's sure to bring on would be visited only on them, if only I could be excluded, sheltered, spared. If only people who didn't vote Trump, including even the scrofulous Johnson and nonsensical Stein voters, could be protected. But that's not how it goes.

I know, calling people stupid is not a way to organize and bring them to your cause. But I have no intention of trying to organize them. Wouldn't be good at it. I see myself going through the Trump Belt bellowing: "Hey Stupid, got any jobs yet? And what do you think of this war we're in? The one your kid got drafted for? Oh, he volunteered? Pretty stupid."

The statistically based analytics that counter pose Obama's win in 2008 to Trump's win now manage to miss the salient point. Who was Obama running against? No, not John McCain but GW Bush, Bush of the ruinous wars, the economy he all but tanked.

Even Americans, not necessarily the brightest of electoral bulbs, knew someone very different was necessary. That was Obama.

Trump launched himself into the limelight by claiming this Obama, a Harvard professor of  constitutional law, wasn't even constitutional; he was Kenyan.

So now the glimmer of intelligence offered up by Obama is well and truly snuffed. When will it come back with Fido driving and Kitty on his head?

**The Unbearable Stupidity of Donald Trump's Election

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