If You Look Up “Gullible” in the Dictionary…

Facebook for Dummies

Every couple of months, a new status update worms its way through Facebook promising to protect the “private” information you’ve been sharing with a bunch of virtual strangers on the internet.  The newest one hit last night, and boy…it’s really…something?

Let’s just cut to the chase here.  If you reposted that, there’s a big part of you that is a gullible moron.  Now, I know that sounds mean, but seriously.  You just read something online – a place not known for its veracity – and then reposted it without doing any research at all.  People repeating what other dumb people tell them is one of the surest symptoms of being dumb.

In the future, you should realize that if a bunch of your dimmest friends on Facebook are reposting something on Facebook and engaging in an internet meme, that internet meme is probably total bullshit.  Let’s consider some of the biggest ones the last couple of years:

Remember when you guys all posted that video about that mean African warlord so some rich white kids could make money and encourage U.S. military involvement in an oil-rich foreign nation…because we all know how well that usually turns out, and how many innocent children that saves?  Oh, wait.  No it doesn’t!   And remember how you were going to buy your anti-Kony kits and bring him to justice this year and have a special day on 4/20 (you still did that) for that Christian evangelist organization who’s running it?  Remember all the research you did before you reposted that?

What about the time when you changed your Facebook profile picture to a cartoon to help prevent child abuse?  I know, it sounds silly now, but you were just trying to raise awareness about the problem of child abuse and cover that 0% gap of adults who aren’t already aware of that problem.  We can all agree that raising awareness is a good thing, right?  Well, no.  Raising awareness in an incorrect way is a very, very bad thing, because you’re encouraging people to do something that doesn’t need doing and then making them feel good about the nothing they just did.  Those are bad things.

Also, willfully disinforming people is a bad thing.  Everyone has the right to their own ignorance.  But go ahead and skip spreading it, okay?  There are enough of you already.

Remember how you, you internet anti-geniuses, convinced everyone that there was a question about Obama’s citizenship status?  Or how you convinced your uneducated friends that Einstein thinks The Secret really works, or how the Tea Party formed thinking the United States was founded as a Christian nation?  Those are all products of dumb people reposting things they don’t understand without questioning them.  That’s the mark of the anti-intellectual and it’s a good reminder of just how the education in our country is declining.  But let’s move on…

Let’s go straight for the actual status update:

There are ways to know that the “legal notice” isn’t a legal notice at all without doing any research.  First off, there’s an exclamation point – “For commercial use of the above my written consent is needed at all times!”  Legal notices generally don’t feel the need to yell at you and the validity and strength of the statements held in them don’t change on the basis of exclamation points.  That should seal it right there, by the time you finish the first paragraph.

If that wasn’t good enough, the convention the post refers to is the “Berne” convention.  Not “Berner”.  Although, I suppose, if there was a Berner Convention, and if it did discuss this, and did decide that there were new laws, and that your statuses were binding legal documents, it STILL wouldn’t supersede Facebook’s privacy policy which YOU ALREADY AGREED TO!!!  <– Exclamation points (not legally binding)

But let’s throw that away.  Let’s say that you reposting that nonsense really was legally binding and compelling.  That actually makes you look worse, oh bottom of your class.

If you just read and reposted something that in some way was going to legally affect your rights as a person and you did so because you read it on the Facebook Wall (!!!) of one of your dumbest friends you, my dear, are the dumbest friend.

We’ve established that you have no legal knowledge and no ability to research subjects and find answers.  Could you possibly expect yourself to know which passages of legal mumbo-jumbo (or in this case nonsense) would even be GOOD for you??  I could call up a lawyer right now and have him write a couple paragraphs that would probably commit you to serving a prison sentence in solitary confinement and you would repost it right away without knowing the difference.

And that’s the point.

Now you may think that this is trivial and I’m a jerk and why would I take the time to write this…and you may be correct on all counts.

But, it’s this sort of passive idiocy that allows Fox News to exist and for elections to be about topics which don’t matter at all.  It’s this sort of thing that lets people believe that the gays are ruining their marriages.  It’s this sort of thing that convinces people that global warming doesn’t exist or that evolution isn’t real.

Just because a bunch of people you know think something is true, that doesn’t mean it is.  Especially if those are your dumbest friends with the worst taste.  This is why you feel like it’s okay to listen to Nickelback.

Remember when your mom asked you if your friends all jumped off a cliff, would you?

Well, congratulations.  You just did.

Johnny Pandersticks

Vote for me! Please.

Mitt Romney released the audio part of the sequel to the infamous Drinking Out of Cups video by Dan Deacon.  Once they get the animated lizard and some awesome backgrounds, they’ll be good to go.

He’s been trying to say everything that he thinks people want to hear for so long that he has no idea who he is anymore.  He’s become completely unhinged and it’s hilarious.

Some…

“I was born and raised here. I love this state. It seems right here. The trees are the right height.  I like seeing the lakes. I love the lakes. There’s something very special here. The Great Lakes, but also all the little inland lakes that dot the parts of Michigan. I love cars.”

At least he’s got the seahorse vote locked up.

Have a look…

Drinking Out of Cups

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=skCV2L0c6K0

Romney’s Sequel

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RHaMqHh5NZ4

 

Mindless

 

If you support both of us, you have no brain.

If you voted for Barack Obama in 2008 and you’re supporting Ron Paul in 2012, one of three things must be true:

– You jumped on the Obama bandwagon in 2008 without knowing much about the candidate you supported.

– You jumped on the Ron Paul 2012 bandwagon without knowing much about the candidate you’re supporting.

Or, the most likely answer…

– You jumped on the Obama bandwagon in 2008 and you’re jumping on the Paul bandwagon in 2012 and you don’t know a goddamn thing about the political system or either candidate you’re supporting.

I don’t intend to champion Obama nor to bash Ron Paul’s supporters here.  I only intend to point out how utterly fucking absurd it is to be a supporter of both of them. The only way for this to happen while maintaining any degree of intellectual consistency is to have completely changed your basic core beliefs in a matter of a few short years…and that’s, well, fucking absurd.

You can’t go from voting for a center-left, pro-choice, black guy to an extreme-right libertarian (except of course when it comes to women’s reproductive rights or the expression of one’s sexual orientation) who is a 9/11 truther, conspiracy theorist, religious zealot, and racial bigot. That does not make any sense whatsoever.

I’ve said many times, here and in other places, that I appreciate Ron Paul’s integrity and look at him as one of the most honest men I’ve seen run a political campaign.  He doesn’t pander and he has no qualms with bucking his own party.  Those are great things.

The rest of it though? Not so much.

Most of his policies, if you can call them that, fall somewhere in the range of impractical to impossible to enact. You can’t go from supporting Obama to supporting a guy who thinks it’s possible to disband the Fed and return to the gold standard, no matter how nice he makes it sound. You can’t go from supporting Obama to supporting a guy who thinks disbanding FEMA is a good idea and that people without health insurance should be left to die.  You can’t go from supporting Obama to supporting a guy who wants to overturn Roe v. Wade and criminalize abortion.

These aren’t rationally coherent positions to take.

Which brings me back to the original point…you either didn’t know anything about Obama, don’t know anything about Paul, or don’t know anything about either or how anything works.  Most people will fall into the third category, and it’s the most logical and obvious reason why someone would support both candidates for president, since you can’t really support both of them if you’re truly knowledgeable about both of them.

While Obama and Paul couldn’t be further apart on almost every actual policy issue they do have some similarities in what we could call the “ethic” of their campaigns.

Both have a strong appeal to young voters and both have a strong social media presence.  Both embody “hope”, just in different ways.  Obama actually preaches hope of rising to a better sort of politics – post-racial, post-partisan,etc…  Paul embodies the hope of the individual to dictate their own course in life and the idea that many young people have that if they do their best, things will work out.  They’re both able to make very powerful connections to young voters because of this.

This is where it becomes important to note that both of these appeals are generally mindless.  While it’s certainly nice and admirable to support and follow both of these ethics, it shouldn’t be enough to be choosing the leader of the free world on either.

While I fully support Obama’s reelection, I don’t support people who voted for him based on their feelings that he just agreed with everything they believed, apart from any knowledge about his positions.  If you voted for Obama thinking that he was going to immediately withdraw from Afghanistan when he campaigned on a military surge there, or because you thought he was going to legalize marijuana, or any number of other policy positions that people pinned to him without knowing what he was actually campaigning on, you are your own biggest problem.  (You’re also your own biggest problem if you think marijuana legalization is a critical political issue.  Not that I don’t support it, I do.)

And if you’re voting for Ron Paul because he’s the rage-against-the-machine, tear down the establishment, reform Washington guy you think he is without realizing who he actually is, without knowing what stuff he plans to do, and without recognizing what things he plans to do that he simply cannot do, you’re going to be your own biggest problem again.

If you voted for Obama in 2008 and you’re tearing him down right now to build up the candidacy of someone you don’t know anything about, congratulations, because you’re fucking yourself twice.

You just helped elect Mitt Romney.

So Many Things…

Sometimes when you win, you're still a loser.

There are so many things wrong with this picture.  Let’s see if we can find them all.

First of all, Mitt Romney won the pointless Iowa Caucus by 8 votes out of 122,255 total votes.  He spent 17 jillion dollars there trying to make Newt Gingrich look bad.  That worked.  But then a guy who spent nothing almost beat him.  Considering what advantages Romney had over Rick Santorum, Santorum kind of did beat him.  Mitt’s been the frontrunner for years now, so winning by 8 votes means that everyone pretty much still hates him.

And he (almost) got beat by someone whose name has come to be defined as something I don’t even want to write…so just Google it.  It’s more fun than me ruining the surprise for you, and it’ll keep it in the top search spot.

Then we’ve got Rick Perry, Michele Bachmann, and Herman Cain all finishing with less total votes combined than Ron Paul alone which is strange since god told them all to run for president.  Then again, if god can’t make up his mind and he totally lacks the follow through to help any of them win, what does his endorsement really mean anyway?  Besides, he told George W. Bush to invade Iraq, so maybe politics isn’t god’s thing.  It’s almost like it would be a good idea to keep those things separate…

Somewhat unsurprisingly, 58 Iowans actually didn’t realize that Herman Cain left his sexual harassment 9-9-9 campaign of bullshit in the past a few weeks ago.

Jon Huntsman, the only candidate who openly admits to acknowledging the realities of climate change and evolution got 745 total votes.  Literally, the only candidate with enough intelligence and integrity to essentially say that 2+2=4 gets treated like a total non-factor.  There’s so much wrong with that.

But none of that is as wrong and funny as this…

135 people showed up to caucus for “no preference”.

Caucus attendees left their houses for a non-binding vote where they had to mill around for a while and then write a name down on a piece of blank paper…and 135 Iowans spent a few hours of their day doing this to write “no preference” on a card.

That is unequivocally insane.

So congratulations, Iowa.  Your caucus system is still a total sham.

Perpetual 9/12

** I generally hate to preface anything I write with a warning about being offended, but with as sensitive as this subject is, I assume there are some people who invariably will be offended (which I generally don’t care about, and also don’t now) but I hope that if they are offended it’s actually from something offensive I wrote (which I doubt I will) and not from the snap judgment to stop reading early.**

The theme of the ten-year anniversary commemoration of 9/11 was, in almost every circumstance, some version of “never forget”, which is unquestionably one of the most vacuous and empty thoughts to have about the whole thing, and it’s important from a lot of perspectives to understand why.

Now, I want to mention right up front that 9/11 is undoubtedly a horrific human tragedy. The loss of life that day should in no way be demeaned. The sacrifice of the first responders is truly noble. The courage and motivation of many young men and women to enlist in the military and volunteer for service is admirable.

The effect that the event has had on the American psyche is profound…but is that a good thing?

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