Alaska Governor Sarah Palin at last night's debate
with Senator Joe Biden at Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri.
(Photo: Omar P.L. Moore/PopcornReel.com)
THE POPCORN REEL EDITORIAL
The I'm With Stupid Nation
An Obsession With Dumbing Down A Political Candidate
To Condescend To And Insult Americans
Omar P.L. Moore/The
October 3, 2008
"I'm John McCain and I approve this madness."
It is madness when a vice presidential candidate is selected without being
vetted. It is madness -- and sheer stupidity -- when that candidate cannot
tell a questioner the names of the newspapers she reads.
It is stupidity when a candidate cannot name a single U.S. Supreme Court case
But it is even more stupid -- a huge mistake in fact -- when a simpleton who
would make Forrest Gump blush, an incurious politician whose record is anathema
to what most of America believes in where women's reproductive rights are
concerned -- would be cynically foisted onto the American public, which was
supposed to latch onto Republican Governor Sarah Palin without looking at her
record as a politician in Alaska as a mayor and a governor.
The typical strategy cited by author Thomas Frank (in his must-read book
What's The Matter With Kansas?) for the Republican side has been to say to
voters in the American heartland -- "I'm with you and I understand you and those
liberal elitists on both coasts are rich and out of touch with you" -- and last
night Governor Sarah Palin did her best to reach out to the country and with a
few winks and references to "mavericks" and "Joe Six Packs" and declarations
that "change is coming", breathless intonations throughout a 95 minute debate,
where she did fairly well but did not provide any substance or talk in detail
about policy and about what she as a vice president would do.
But what's most stupid of all is the idea that Americans are stupid. It is
one of the biggest myths of all time.
Here's a bigger newsflash: Americans are not stupid.
Americans are misinformed by the mainstream media in their country -- but
they're not stupid. Far from it, in fact.
Americans are very clear about where the country is headed. More than 82%
of them think it is going in the wrong direction. And earlier this week --
Monday -- when the House of Representatives in the U.S. Congress voted "no" on
the bailout bill, you couldn't even get on the House.gov website -- it had
crashed because of the volume of traffic created by people who were accessing
the site. It wasn't until the following morning that a certain someone was
able to access it.
So Americans are not stupid -- and contrary to popular belief -- are very much
engaged in the political process.
So just who out there is saying that Americans are stupid?
The mainstream media is saying that Americans are stupid, with many of its
pundits (both Democratic and Republican) saying that candidates like Obama and
running mate Biden should give shorter answers because, heaven forbid, to do
otherwise would make them sound "professorial" or "boring".
In other words, dumb-down your presentation for Americans, because after all,
they can't handle too much information, right?
There's already been a simpleton elected to America's highest office. The
idea that Americans, in the wake of the last eight years would eschew a ticket
that has a superior education level -- Barack Obama graduated number one at
Harvard Law School and was the president of Harvard Law Review, while John
McCain graduated 894th out of 899 in the Annapolis Naval Academy and Governor
Palin went to six colleges in five years (or was it five community colleges in
six years?) -- is highly unlikely.
After all, why would one want a president in office who is less smart than they
are? In times like these, would it not be prudent to have a president and
vice president who demonstrate reason, sound judgment, intelligence, smarts and achievement in
The point of all this is, Americans need information.
Finally, Americans are watching, and watching
closely. Some 52 million watched last week's Obama-McCain debate.
Thirty-nine million of them watched John McCain speak in last month's
convention. Thirty-eight million watched Barack Obama in August at his
convention. Almost the same amount watched Sarah Palin's speech last
The fact is, the "I'm With Stupid" bandwagon has derailed. The era of the
romanticism of being as dumb as a bag of rocks and calling that authenticity is
both a condescension and insult to Americans everywhere in the country.
The times are too tough to buy such nonsense and tomfoolery.
Copyright The Popcorn Reel. PopcornReel.com. 2008. All Rights