Liberals are a rare breed within the Redoubt. So when a group sat down at a table near me in a restaurant outside the Redoubt and began bloviating loudly enough for everyone on that end of the restaurant to hear, I paid attention. Here’s what I learned about liberals today.
The liberal group was just ahead of me coming into the restaurant. Actually, they hopped out of their car parked next to me just before I exited mine. The lead man spoke loudly about some idiot who gave an incredibly stupid speech just recently. I didn’t catch the rest as they moved ahead of me but my guess was, “These are liberals, and Trump must have recently given some major speech.” Turned out, they were talking about Trump and his recent speech at the UN about national sovereignty.
While I took care of a few business items, an acquaintance selected my lunch table (self-seating at the restaurant), which coincidently was next to the table where the liberal group had planted themselves. The liberal group consisted of two men and one woman, all apparently in the same age bracket, likely Baby Boomer. (They were old, but did not appear to be senior-citizen-old. If they were senior citizens, then it was a milestone they could only have just hit.) One heavy-set, slovenly-dressed man led most of the conversation, while the other two mostly listened and chimed in supporting points on occasion.
I didn’t feel as though I were eavesdropping since they spoke loudly enough that my table would have also needed to speak loudly just to hear each other across the table over the liberals’ rant.
Here’s what I observed:
Politics is Their Life
I was there for about an hour. The liberals got started a few minutes before me, and were still going strong and just starting dessert when I left. In all that time, their conversation ran non-stop with no breaks.
The conversation covered nothing aside from politics. No, “Hey, how’s the family?” or “How’s business going?” or “Did you hear about our friend so-and-so?” There were no topics of conversation other than ranting about politics.
About 80% of the political conversation focused on “evidence” of Trump and the GOP as total idiots. The remaining 20% covered Democrat issues, like Hillary versus Bernie. The group appeared to be Bernie fans who were disappointed in how the DNC railroaded Bernie Sanders during the primary, but still sounded sympathetic to Hillary and of an opinion that she would have made a decent president overall.
They were obviously good acquaintances from the casual level of conversation. But it was truly surprising to note that in over an hour of talking not a single normal-life topic came up.
Further, all politics were federally focused. No state or local political issues occurred in conversation.
Appearing Smart is Really, Really Important
The guy doing most of the talking made a big deal several times about how smart and insightful he was. They also ridiculed Trump at least a half dozen times during the hour as a moron, a total idiot, very dumb, and similar epithets. The GOP got similar criticism as a group, but not as much as Trump.
He also opined on “stupid moves” the GOP were making in congress and how it would ruin their re-election chances, as if he could easily come alongside the GOP and tell them how to do their policies well.
I recall during Obama’s first election how much the media (especially MSNBC) went on and on about how smart he was, how stratospherically brilliant a man Obama was, how Obama was so much smarter then us ordinary Americans that we couldn’t even comprehend. (In reality, Obama is at about 116 based off SAT scores, while Hillary is 140 and GW Bush is 125. So Obama was smarter than the average of 100, but not even close to MENSA material.)
This was also the point in a past conversation with a liberal. When I pointed out that Obamacare had made bare-bones coverage plans illegal, the response was to justify it with, “Most folks aren’t as smart as you and I and so they need folks like us to tell them what must be included in the health insurance they buy, so that the insurance companies don’t take advantage of them.” I was stunned speechless. My neighbor would probably tell you I’m in a higher IQ bracket than he is, but I’m sure as hell not going to go across the street and tell him what insurance he must buy for his kids.
Despite all the focus on “smartness” I was stunned at the gaping holes in the liberal’s factual knowledge base and the glaring inconsistencies in logic as he switched from one principle to another. This was the kind of person who knew enough to think he was smart (and probably is above average) but not nearly as smart as he imagined himself to be.
One of the most descriptive comments I learned from the internet, particularly applied to Ph.D.’s overstepping their expertise: “Wow! It must have taken a lot of education to become that dumb.” It fit this guy working hard to amaze his friends.
At the end, he even grabbed a local newspaper and began assessing article headlines as to how daft the folks in the political articles were compared to him. Overcompensating?
I try to provide insightful analysis for our readers, but I know I’ve never claimed you should listen to me because I’m smart. Who cares what my IQ is?! Do the things I write provide insight for your life or not? If so, then you’re welcome. If not, then stop wasting your time.
Success is Measured by Popularity
This was close to the beginning, but apparently Trump’s speech was dumb and a total flop because folks only applauded once.
I’d not read anything about the UN speech yet, so I pulled up some quick news summaries. Basically, Trump hammered national sovereignty. The global gravy train of US troops and tax dollars is coming to an end. The only applause was when Trump basically gave all the other leaders a pat on the back mentioning that they defend their own nations’ sovereignty too, just like they should.
So “No, duh!” Trump’s speech didn’t get applause. National sovereignty is definitely not something the UN wants to hear asserted. If I gave a defense of Intelligent Design before a crowd of atheistic evolutionists, the lack of applause at the end would not tell me my speech was a failure. The measure of success is whether or not my point was understood, regardless of whether they like or not.
Idiocy Without Excuse
One of the whoppers from the conversation was, “The US Constitution was originally written to defend the common good.” This was in the midst of several Bernie Sanders and universal health care comments, so definitely a communist or socialist spin.
But these folks went through public school at least a decade or two ahead of me. It’s not like they can use the millennial excuse – “Go easy on me! I went to public school!”
Common good? Is that why the Bill of Rights is focused on individual rights? Or if we’re talking about the main body of the document, which article about function of the government branches shows that it is all about the common good?
If a millennial told me he knew nothing about the US Constitution or US History, I’d believe him and pity him. But a Baby Boomer? Those folks went to school before the curriculum got gutted!
No Knowledge of Consequences
Lots of talk about how the GOP is going to ruin healthcare because if their efforts at a bill pass then millions would lose their health coverage.
Not one comment about who’s paying for that coverage.
I mean, if you pay for insurance, then you are ensuring your own coverage. You don’t “lose coverage” unless you stop paying or the insurance company screws you when you need your policy to cover you. So the only folks who are going to “lose coverage” are those getting a free ride.
I agree with what the late Jerry Pournelle wisely asked:
But somehow over the years I have acquired the responsibility to pay your health debts, and those of refugees, and even of illegal migrants who have no intention of assimilating, and I would like to know how I got this obligation, and the state got the right to enforce it with armed men?
Yet I am obliged to give you – you are entitled – not only to emergency health care, but to health insurance, no matter how sick you are, or how strange your needs. I am even required to pay part of the cost of your sex change operation, should you want one and find a qualified someone to say you need it for proper mental health. It is not an obligation I asked for or assented to, but it is an entitlement you have; and I want to know the constitutional basis for this. Surely your sex change operation is not necessarily and proper for the health of the republic? It is not interstate commerce within any sane interpretation of the phrase. It is not promoting the general welfare.
You want it. I don’t say you can’t have it, but surely I can say that I don’t want to pay for it? And I don’t have to be totally bereft of the milk of human kindness to say I don’t owe you any health care insurance either.
Sure, it’s sad that some folks would lose health coverage when the free ride ends. But who should be paying for their insurance? Them? You? Me? Apparently, it’s up to the government who has the large pile of money that came out of nowhere and they just need to hand it out charitably.
No Logical Consistency
About the time I was leaving, they shifted to the topic of vaccines and how those evil vaccine deniers are causing a resurgence of all sorts of diseases in the country. They even mentioned an acquaintance who didn’t want to vaccinate their own kids and how they had sternly lectured that adult about the absolute importance of getting all recommended vaccines for the kids.
Of course, earlier in the conversation they talked about all the wonderful things the illegal immigrants are bringing to our country and how Trump is dooming us by taking an anti-illegal immigration stance.
I was sorely, sorely tempted to lean over and ask, “How do you explain the explosion of diseases in refugee and immigrant communities, especially those diseases which have no vaccines and do not normally exist on our soil, like drug resistant TB which exceeded Minnesota’s health budget earlier this summer?” Apparently, a concerned citizen saying no to an MMR vaccine for their child is now somehow to blame for the surge of drug-resistant TB in immigrant communities, who were never screened for diseases when they entered the country illegally.
An Extremely Warped View of Reality
Here were another two whoppers from the conversation. Talking about Kim Jong Un the opinion was that Trump is making a big mistake standing up to him and ought to just be more conciliatory like past presidents. Yeah, cause that worked to prevent their nuclear weapons development, right? I still remember Bill Clinton talking about how it was OK to back off UN regulations on their “nuclear power” program because they really, really promised they would not use those reactors to develop weapons grade nuclear material.
But the shocker was when they asserted that Kim Jong Un and Trump were practically the same when it came to how leaders ran their country.
I nearly dropped my fork.
Excuse me? Do you have any idea what life is like in countries like that? Or how good we have it in the USA?
The next whopper was some quote from Hitler being similar to a quote from Trump and so Trump and Hitler were practically the same in governing?
[Choke-gag]. What is Trump’s death camp body count again? Let’s see, Hitler racked up 6 million Jews, not counting the other 5 million folks he had slaughtered. And Trump is well on his way with… zero. And how many neighboring countries has Trump invaded and conquered?
Read this account of an Austrian eyewitness to the rise of Hitler and how he established his popularity and then control over the people and ask, “Does this sound more like Trump policy? Or Obama or Hillary policy?” Public schools reduced to propaganda and recess. All firearms to be registered, later the registered firearms are seized.
The lack of contact with reality reminds me of the American feminist college girl screaming that a US college is the most dangerous place in the world for a young woman. Apparently the Middle East is safer and kinder for women? Could you even identify the Middle East on a map?
It is scary. These folks vote. They think they are so smart they should tell everyone else how to live their life, and yet they cannot see consequences of their policy ideas, or hold a logically coherent view, and they measure success in terms of popularity. Their perception of reality is severely warped, even while they claim that they understand the world better than any of the rest of us, and their knowledge base doesn’t reach any deeper than talking points.
And their voting numbers are growing year by year.
Are you prepared?