I believe that rampant stupidity boils down to three basic root causes: 1) a lack of healthy intellectual curiosity, especially about anything that is not reducible to a cell phone app or video game 2) a growing trend towards idiot worship in an existing culture of dumb (so dumb that most people don’t even know to be embarrassed about their mullets, missing teeth or obscene muffin tops) and 3) an insufficient appreciation for the many unique benefits of learning to read, getting an education beyond the 8th grade or human intelligence in general, including such things as the survival of our species. I realize this may sound somewhat over dramatic, as if stupidity is more dangerous than global warming, mental patients and drug addicts with automatic weapons, or flesh eating bacteria. However, a lifelong lack of interest in anything except sticky buds, Grand Theft Auto, kitty videos and “knock-out game” vines on WorldStar is unlikely to produce someone with superior intelligence or critical thinking skills. Nor is it likely to result in a person psychologically prepared to survive in an increasingly complex and rapidly changing world.
Thus, the typical idiot, as defined above, is not what most social workers would call a “good environmental fit” in either a highly technological future or a post-apocalyptic landscape littered with disfigured mutants and hungry zombies. On the other hand, if zombies need a constant supply of blood-rich brains to feed upon for their undead sustenance, they will probably quickly starve and die off (again). At least zombies and cannibalistic mutants appear (from a review of the many incredibly stupid movies on the subject) to be smart enough to consume the more nutritious/vitamin-rich parts of the body such as the heart, liver, and brain. Meanwhile we are busy eating gluten-free Cheerios, Twizzlers and pounding jello and Jagermeister shots. While single-cell amoebas are learning how to invade our bodies and brains and out-wit our immune systems, thousands of young boys and functionally illiterate teenagers are pushing each other off rooftops in shopping carts to see what happens. It doesn’t seem like a very fair fight, does it? Not to worry because we now have “science-based” cable TV channels like National Geographic and Discovery. Unfortunately, most of their latest programs are about Aztec-extraterrestrial sex orgies (…as Ancient Alien theorists believe), trying to catch a Sasquatch, or proving that Casper the ghost really exists. As a result, we dont seem to recognize ourselves as slowly decaying and dying from dumb in its multiplicity of forms. This includes the many online discussion groups. Does it make any logical sense that on web forums for people who take psychiatric medication the most respect and deference is given to those participants who lists themselves as having the most severe mental illness, take the most medication and/or suffer from complex personality disorders?
A corollary to my stupid theory is that people are more interested in money and fame (or notoriety) today than they are about feeling the healthy dopamine rush of learning something new, mastering a difficult yet important life skill, or helping others and in so doing becoming a much better person. Studies on empathy and game theory as applied to social relations show that chimpanzees and their close relatives the bonobos are probably better at getting along and resolving conflict than most human beings. At least bonobos chimps realize that oral sex or a powerful orgasm are quite often effective methods to calm down an enraged clan member or uptight Alpha male. However, I dont see Donald Trump, Vladimir Putin, Kim Jong Un, or the rest of the Republican party Presidential candidates utilizing that bit of scientific knowledge, although I admit I’m not privy to what goes on behind closed doors in gaudy penthouses and palaces. The point is there is a lot of stupidity that seems to be proliferating like wild rabbits in various socioeconomic strata of society and this cultural virus/”moron meme” is supported and condoned by many people. Otherwise there is no reasonable explanation for well known “celebrity idiots” like Snooki , the Real Housewives of Orange County, Mob Wives or ….this uber yutzy chick in the video below.
In Part Two, I will attempt to flesh out, so to speak, my unified “Theory of Dumb”, hopefully before the zombies, flesh-eating bacteria, and extraterrestrial lizard men consume us. If anyone happens to know what the f$#k this young lady below is saying or even trying to communicate in English-ish, please let me know because, I’m curious about everything, even rampant stupidity.
Ok, I know it’s satire, but there are people who are writing in to agree with her…which is even scarier:
Such a great blog, captaincliff! Wonderful job, indeed, of addressing serious issues while keeping a sense of humor!
Thanks Deb. I’m glad I can now NOT have to call you by your dog’s name. Serious yet funny…that’s me.