Three Things: Waves of Stupidity

[NB: Check the byline, thanks. /~Rayne]

Scrolling through my social media feed Wednesday I noticed wave after wave of incredible stupidity. Of course there’s a lot of stupid out on the internet, so much wrongness there’s an xkcd cartoon for those of us who can’t help but point at the trash fires burning online.

But Wednesday’s exceptionally bad piles of idiocy are worth noting because they’re indicative of trends.

~ 3 ~

Jesus Christ, this woman is a moron AND she’s a doctor. Proves not everyone who earns a doctorate should be trusted with sharp objects or your life.

Magnetism, I has it. Now that I’m vaccinated all the metal in my house is clinging to me — even brass keys which aren’t conductive. ~eye roll~

Watch as this nurse — a health care professional who must have attended secondary education and passed a state licensing exam — demonstrates before the same state legislative hearing how COVID has increased her magnetism.

Lady, take a fucking shower. It’s sweat and skin oils causing small objects to stick to you.

What an incredible waste of government personnel hours. Expect more of this kind of idiocy as long as it’s profitable for these hacks to monetize their wretchedness while spreading this ignorant disinformation.

~ 2 ~

Two words should tell just how bad this next bit of stupid is: Louie Gohmert.

Rep. Gohmert has become a synonym for brain-sucking vapidity if you aren’t already familiar with this elected representative’s cred. But he really outdid himself today.

Bet he also believes Superman could stop or reverse time by flying fast enough around the earth in the opposite direction of its rotation.

Gohmert tried to correct what he felt was a misunderstanding, but…

We knew what you meant the first time, Gohmert. Voters in TX-01 need to catch the clue train in 2022 and elect someone with a few more watts upstairs.

Best analysis of Gohmert’s question in this thread:

The last tweet in the thread is perfection.

Until voters get fed up with this kind of moron representing them, we can expect more Gohmert-ish output from the likes of Representatives Boebert, Cawthorn, Gaetz, Gosar, Greene, so on. What a pity they all belong to the same political entity which has apparently abandoned science.

~ 1 ~

Remember all the posts this site has written in praise of investment firm BlackRock? That would be zero if you’re a newbie here which is in line with most sites on the left.

The firm may have begun to clue in that climate change and a lack of diversity are eating into their investment performance, but that’s not a shift to the left — it’s an acknowledgment of facts and science.

For some reason this Ohio GOP senate candidate believes The Left — just say it, Vance, the Democratic Party — in particular are big supporters of BlackRock:

Vance, the author of Hillbilly Elegy, attacks Democrats instead of focusing on the problem which is plaguing Ohio homebuyers. No doubt he’ll do the same thing if he’s elected — avoid confronting the financial investment sector from which he’ll expect campaign donations while crabbing about the political party which has swept up problem after problem created by lousy GOP tax policy.

As I’ve noted before, lower wage workers can’t afford housing when prices skyrocket due to investment bankers buying single family and other residential housing. Don’t like increasing wages? Get the investment banks out of single family housing and revisit policy toward investment banking in multi-family housing.

Businesses are still going to have to respond to the suppression of wages over the last couple decades; some of the wage increases are merely catch-up. Food service, hard hit by the pandemic, may respond earliest and pass the cost immediately onto their customers.

But at some point shareholders need to ask themselves why they are paying so much for executives when they aren’t the frontline facing customers. With Standard & Poor index members’ median CEO compensation reaching $13.7 million this past year in spite of the pandemic, executives have raked in the cash during the pandemic; they can afford to yield a few million in compensation in order to assure worker retention through pay increases to living wage level.

Betting Vance won’t say anything about the inequity of executives’ compensation being too busy trashing Democrats to expend any wattage on systemic problems and solutions. He’s still unable to grasp the true root causes of poverty just as his hillbilly memoir revealed.

I can hardly wait for another year and a half of this crap while he runs for Ohio’s open senate seat.

~ 0 ~

There was plenty more stupid where that came from, but the stuff is toxic and one can easily overdose. Let’s hope Thursday is a little smarter.

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107 replies
  1. Rayne says:

    The first two items were enough to make me yell. The third one just makes me cringe. My folks bought Hillbilly Elegy and ate it up, probably because they’ve lived quite a bit of their adult lives in Ohio and Indiana, rubbed shoulders with a lot of people who call themselves hillbillies. But the conclusions Vance makes are just so absurdly shallow; I blew off my parents’ recommendation to read his book. Now I’m going to have work on deprogramming them, pointing to their own impoverished upbringing in disparate locations and note what helped get them out of poverty: the G.I. Bill, affordable secondary education, and a living wage.

    ADDER: Good gravy, what did I miss on CNN tonight? Poor Don Lemon.

    Reply
  2. Raven Eye says:

    So the last thing I read before hitting the bed is this. I wonder how long it will take for the room to stop spinning.

    Oh the humanity.

    Reply
    • Rayne says:

      I have long had a theory that our early childhood vaccination program has been too successful, with candidates surviving to adulthood who might not otherwise have made it without intervention. Add all the child safety nets we’ve injected into our society and lo, a nation of morons. Welcome to Idiocracy.

      ADDER: I read somewhere in my feed yesterday someone advocated reviving a larger-than-humans predator species like a saber-tooth tiger. They thought that we had too many people who could no longer think because they were never pressed to do so to survive. I think the pandemic proved this might not work.

      Reply
  3. Molly Pitcher says:

    I am Gobsmacked by the stupidity. It is a brain twisting sensation to want to laugh at the inanity while simultaneously feeling terrified at the damage idiots like these are doing. Looking at the people in the background of the video, they are all lapping it up. I didn’t see a single eyeroll. That is what REALLY scares me; a large part of this country has no critical thinking skills.

    Reply
    • Rayne says:

      The replies to the threads covering this hearing cracked me up. Of course there were a few anti-vaxx trolls but the majority were as stunned by the stupidity as you were. I loved the folks capturing the faces of audience at hearing:


      This kid’s like the one in the plaid shirt behind Trump at one of his rallies:


      An upside to lack of masks: seeing these expressions once again. LOL

      Reply
    • Rayne says:

      You would not believe the arguments defending $38 million in compensation while Chipotle’s workers are struggling to make ends meet. Absolutely batshit insane and immoral.

      Reply
    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      Yep. I think it was Rayne who mentioned on an earlier thread that that ceo also spent nearly three times that much money moving his HQ from Colorado to California — not for business reasons, but for his personal convenience. But it’s low-wage workers who are dragging down profits. Uh, huh.

      We need to throw shame at his board of directors, too (and the industry of inside and outside compensation “specialists,” who enable this shit). Like many other boards, it seems to view the narcissism and wastefulness of their ceo as a sign of greatness. Next thing you know, this guy will be running GE.

      Reply
  4. klynn says:

    This Emptywheeler is just relieved to know they were not alone yesterday in their “loud” mutterings of, “Seriously?”

    Thank you Rayne! Please Thursday, be better!

    Reply
  5. BalifartheLost says:

    I find myself wondering why so much coverage is given to such obvious distraction. Sure it is outrageous when Gohmert or Greene or whoever the clown is says a monumentally devoid of logic phrase and click-bait means you miss eyeballs if you don’t at least acknowledge it.
    However these stupid inanities keep popping up right after a story comes out like”Republicans vote to block anti puppy stomping bill again,which has huge bi-partisan and public support.” Is there a name for The post-press-release journalism world? Because we may need a new one.

    Please note this is no attack on persons specific. It is meant as a criticism of the phenomena.

    Reply
    • Rayne says:

      Why so much coverage? Because our democracy is going down in flames and these fucking idiots — genuinely stupid morons — are among those eagerly taking turns holding the Flamethrower of Freedom!

      Gohmert is a nincompoop. He’s not worthy of the role he holds as the public’s representative. His constituents need to know the rest of us see his idiocy, and they need to know they’re also being side eyed. Seriously, Lufkin, Nacogdoches, Longview, Marshall, and Tyler Texas, what the ever-living fuck? Can you not find someone to represent you who isn’t a dim bulb? You live in an area which will be savaged by climate change and you’ve elected a ninny who can’t be bothered to acquire some basic science before embarrassing himself and you in a public hearing? Hope the polar vortex taught you people you need advocates with your interests in mind and not some shallow brainless GOP autobot.

      At least Colorado’s 3rd Congressional district is snapping out of their torpor about Rep. Boebert, and reporting on her nutbaggery has been key to this shift in opinion.

      Reply
      • BalifartheLost says:

        I wish I could disagree with you abut the “democracy going down in flames” . I can not because I do not. And one party for sure is cranking the fiddle up to 13 while the seven hills burn.

        Funny how 15-20 years after the media was allowed to consolidate into very few hands we only seem to get either distractions as news or pro-corporate pablum.

        And this was not meant to attack the post author , in either reply. I agree with you! I’m just singing over here in the minor key.

        Reply
      • subtropolis says:

        I’d already had the link to that Politico article in my clipboard to leave here to cheer you up. Fingers crossed, that they can toss her out.

        Reply
    • Troutwaxer says:

      If you’re listening to Louie Gohmert ask the BLM to move the Earth, you’re not paying attention to zombie slave-labor on the moon!

      Reply
    • Hug h says:

      Hoffer said it best- “An empty head is not really empty; it is stuffed with rubbish. Hence the difficulty of forcing anything into an empty head.”
      -Eric Hoffer- (1902 – 1983) Longshoremen, Author, American moral and social philosopher.

      Reply
    • Rayne says:

      The challenge will be whether those 117 employees who haven’t received any vaccine yet can be obligated to do so when the vaccine is still under Emergency Use Authorization. This is what they’ll use to claim the vaccine is human experimentation, never mind the pandemic emergency and the +40 years of research behind mRNA and +60 years research behind the adenovirus-vector vaccine, as well as the study earlier this year which showed the vaccine stemmed transmissions to/from health care workers and their families. FDA needs to change the vaccine’s status to standard schedule for adults, but I suspect this status plays some role in the ability to transfer doses to other countries.

      Texas being a right-to-work state, the hospital can fire employees with or without cause and the failure to comply with new terms of employment may give them ample cause.

      Reply
    • timbo says:

      There’s a similar thing going on here in California… with the California public school teachers. According to a family member, who is a tenured California teacher and also a union rep, California no longer requires any vaccinations by teachers other than the TB vaccine! Ugh. And as to the emergency provisional SAR2 vaccines, the union my relative is in (even though my relative doesn’t agree with the decision) is sticking with teachers who refuse to allow the government to inject them with vaccines that haven’t been through the regular approval regime.

      Reply
  6. P J Evans says:

    I wonder if Louie is using questions he gets from his constituents. Via USPS, since they may have trouble with the intartubez.

    Reply
    • Rayne says:

      His staff should be vetting them before he embarrasses himself and his staff with such nonsense. They could have replied with a cogent answer offering instead to ask a more rational question but no.

      Reply
      • BobCon says:

        Staff don’t stick around if they try to get in the way of people like Louie Gohmert..Unfortunately, Congress as an institution is still heavily slanted toward protecting bosses over employees. There may have been earlier exposure of dirtbags like Gaetz and Hunter if employees had better hope of speaking out without retribution.

        And while Gohmert’s idiocy here isn’t illegal, the extreme imbalance of power adds to a culture of shut up and row for staff

        Reply
        • John Lehman says:

          Not trying to upstage punaise (impossible) but;

          “ while Gohmert’s idiocy here isn’t illegal…”, it does make our National symbol, the Eagle ill.

          Reply
        • Rayne says:

          A really good staffer has perfected persuading idiots not to shoot themselves in full view of the public, corporate or government.

          Perhaps the staff don’t give a shit about Gohmert looking like the dumbass he is. Maybe they even encouraged him.

          Reply
    • Tom says:

      Louie probably felt he was going out on a limb with his constituents by acknowledging the Earth goes around the Sun.

      Reply
  7. pjb says:

    I feel like no one is putting 2 and 2 together. The solution is right in front of us: vaccinate astronauts and send them into geosynchronous orbit. Their magnetism will move the earth’s orbit enough to cause positive climate change. Co-Nobel prizes for Gohmert and the Ohio Osteopath.

    Reply
  8. John Lehman says:

    Two quotes:

    One some attribute to H.L. Mencken
    -“nobody ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American people”

    The second:
    “It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you into trouble,  it’s what you know for sure that  just ain’t so.” -Mark Twain

    Seems we have a blending of the truths of these maxims.

    Reply
    • Epicurus says:

      Regarding Mencken and underestimating the intelligence of the American people, from the AP circa 1989 “https://apnews.com/article/e64e97725923bb7b64aa8e054aabe4b2”.

      Reply
      • John Lehman says:

        Sad, sad stain on the guy’s character.

        Guess being a witty, clever journalist does not make him a good person.

        Reply
  9. Jenny says:

    Thank you Rayne.

    “Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.” Martin Luther King, Jr.

    Reply
  10. Pete T says:

    There’s a DART spacecraft with Gohmert’s name on it. Too bad he cannot be piloting the spacecraft.

    Pete

    PS
    Go ahead look up DART spacecraft.

    Reply
  11. Tracy Lynn says:

    I’m embarrassed to admit I read Hillbilly Elegy. I picked it up from my library, thinking that although I probably wouldn’t agree with the author, I might learn a little about the folks who call themselves “hillbillies,” since I have never met anyone who identified as such. Instead it was a 250 page elitist rant about poor people (his people) too lazy to work. I couldn’t wrap my mind around this — he writes about his hillbilly relatives with such distain. I felt like I had to take a shower after finishing the book.

    Reply
  12. ThoughtMail says:

    A gifted acquaintance says that the intelligence of the universe is a constant, but the population is growing.

    In his defense, he conveniently forgets that he was born much later than I.

    ~sigh~

    Reply
  13. Tom says:

    I’d be worried what’s going to happen when all those magnetized people get near voting machines. Or airport metal detectors. Also, I wish that doctor had explained where her south pole and north pole were.

    Reply
  14. Nehoa says:

    “To die, to sleep – to sleep, perchance to dream – ay, there’s the rub, for in this sleep of death what dreams may come…” Fox News viewer.

    Reply
  15. Epicurus says:

    Most people don’t have a basic scientific understanding of how the world works or has worked. Most people see science as a class or course to pass in order to move on rather than as something central to their lives. Re: the moron doctor above, there was an obscure religious sect back about 1760 called the Sandemanians, a sub-set/sect of the Scottish Presbyterian Church. Sandemanians believed in “auras” among other things. As so happened Michael Faraday was a Sandemanian. If one visualizes an electro-magnetic field the concept of auras will jump out.

    From the tutorial website Tut2Learn “His successor, the physicist John Tyndall, called Michael Faraday, “the greatest experimental philosopher the world has ever known.”
    He (Faraday) confessed, “The book of nature which we have to read is written by the finger of God.” This lecture is published at the end of a volume on Experimental Researches in Chemistry and Physics, where he states, “These observations are so immediately connected in their nature and origin with my own experimental life; either as a cause or a consequence, that I have thought the close of this volume not an unfit place for their reproduction.”
    He believed the universe is intelligible, beautiful and adaptable to man’s use designed by a rational, wise, and good God.
    He wrote, “The beauty of electricity, or of any other force, is not that the power is mysterious and unexpected, but that it is under law, and that the taught intellect can even now govern it.”
    He regarded facts as fundamental, the observed ones of science and the revealed ones of religion. Each group, however, is surrounded by an aura of speculateion, i.e., theory or theology.
    If these auras are large, overlap will occur and inevitable conflicts owing to the incompleteness and imperfection of each.
    Faraday’s life was consistent with his faith and hope. He had an unquenchable thirst for truth, but he recongnized his own limitations. He pursued truth industriously throughout his whole life.
    Tyndall noted that in Faraday’s case, “You cannot separate the moral and the emotional from the intellectual.” Maybe the doctor is a moron for trying to propose and/or understand a theory but that wouldn’t be my call.

    There is another assumption about Gohmert’s question (and I think Gohmert is a harmful, disingenuous individual). Perhaps he was asking honestly if the BLM (disingenuous association by Gohmert) and Forest Service have the ability to deal pro-actively with forces of nature, such as solar flares, that do dramatically affect the world’s climate and giving them an opportunity to educate him and the country about the purpose and abilities of those agencies or perhaps it was his way of pointing out those agencies don’t have the ability to deal with certain forces of nature proactively in any meaningful way. (For those that would skewer me for listening to Gohmert and trying to understand what he was asking, I would offer this which most people do not know. https://www.sciencenews.org/article/earth-magnetic-field-reversal-mass-extinctions-environment-crisis)

    Reply
    • Rayne says:

      Most people don’t have a basic scientific understanding of how the world works or has worked.

      Most people in the U.S. attended public school and shared a fairly similar K-12 education with a fundamental grasp on science. It’s far more likely that some of these anti-vaxxers are evidence of successful influence operations spawned by as few as 12 people in spite of a common baseline education. It doesn’t help when misguided individuals like Robert F. Kennedy III uses his family’s name to promulgate bullshit. Spend some time reading about anti-vaxx disinformation.

      Perhaps he was asking honestly…

      No. Fuck no. There’s no goddamned reason why Gohmert — assuming good faith and genuine interest in the absence of evidence — couldn’t have checked this first before pantsing himself and his constituents in a public hearing. And you’re pushing some swill here if you think for a moment to imply Gohmert is innocently concerned ANY governmental entity on earth has the ability to do things on a planetary scale like shift a magnetic field or move a planetary body.

      ADDER: Still foaming angry…I’m going to be pissed off royally about this bullshit all day, “Most people don’t have a basic scientific understanding…” THAT’S WHY I POINTED OUT A **DOCTOR** AND A **NURSE** WHO ARE LICENSED PROFESSIONALS ARE PUSHING SO MUCH STUPID. They obtained additional science education, pass an exam to get licensed and they are pushing bullshit which is 100% in sync with anti-vaxx influence operations. Their licensure makes their bullshit more dangerous because far too many people give professionals credence.

      All the more reason why America’s voters need to do a far better job about civic participation, getting involved in recruiting better candidates than morons like Gohmert and the Qultist faction. We need elected officials who are up to the job of representing a technologically-sophisticated first world nation, the kind of officials who do the leg work in advance of hearings instead of taking up space and time with nonsense.

      Reply
      • earlofhuntingdon says:

        Thank you. It’s possible Gohmert is that stupid. It seems more likely he’s shilling for another outrage that will further demean facts and science, and lead to idiotic questions about the veracity of human-caused planetary heating. With raw material like Gohmert, the exercise exactly fits the petroleum industry’s standard, “question the science” denialist lie.

        Reply
        • Rayne says:

          That, and honestly, it’s occurred to me that Epicurus may be pulling that “question the science” bullshit for a more sophisticated audience.

          Reply
      • Molly Pitcher says:

        “All the more reason why America’s voters need to do a far better job about civic participation, getting involved in recruiting better candidates than morons like Gohmert and the Qultist faction.”

        Rayne, that would require that the voters are smart enough to recognize ‘stupid’ when it wants to run for something. Given the percentage of voters who believe the orange guy is actually still president, I don’t have a lot of expectations for improvement.

        Reply
    • John Lehman says:

      (For those that would skewer me for listening to Gohmert and trying to understand what he was asking, I would offer this which most people do not know.)

      It’s not whether his facts are true or not, its the fact that a non-scientist is throwing around questionable, irrelevant science for his not well hidden agenda.

      Gohmert isn’t interested in any science at all or it’s method, only to the extent it might further his poorly hidden agenda.

      Reply
      • Rayne says:

        If Gohmert was truly interested in science and not operating in bad faith he has access to Congressional Research Service through which to field his questions. Gohmert’s been in office eight fucking terms already, 16 years — he knows he has CRS to ask anything about science related to making policy and legislation.

        But sure, let’s pretend Gohmert is trying to ask a good faith question. What utter poppycock.

        Reply
    • John Lehman says:

      By the way, did find your science history info interesting, thanks.

      Was familiar with the magnetic field-extinction thing though.

      Reply
    • P J Evans says:

      I’ve read that Faraday’s lectures are still worth reading. He was apparently *very* good at popularizing science.

      Reply
    • Eureka says:

      “which most people do not know” —

      Here’s where you’re “wrong” and this marries Rayne’s comment on the disinfo: RWNJ and Fox etc.- watchers “know” all about magnetic reversals as part of the science facts they picked up, all twisted, attendant to the climate change-denial wars.

      Gohmert, and those conditioned to catch his reference, have been quite specifically science-educated. Fox News School of Climatology. Many letters.

      COVID’s far from the first recent-era battle of science vs. fact-laced pseudoscience.

      I scare-quoted “wrong” because — as someone who has taught (post-secondary) various elements related to measuring geologic time and so forth — it’s roughly fair to say that many of these details, to they extent that they’ve been taught generally prior, sieve out of common knowledge after, say, 9th grade Earth Science. For some folks info like this at higher-levels of education is a layering on, for others it’s really new.

      But as the Koch-fueled counterfactuals against climate change really heated up (pun pun PUN), faux-informed boomers (esp.) who’d not even shown interest in such things found they’d never met an ice-core sampling they didn’t like. I even experienced this with a non-scientifically-inclined, if science-respecting, family member: this person would “inform” me how we’ve had different coolings and warmings, ice ages and not (right, and stadials and interstadials within them I’d say, annoyed as I discovered the depths of disinfo grafters’ efforts).

      Climate change is just “inherent” to the earth, was the point of this project. Oh well, throw up our hands and buy more plastic and incandescent light bulbs. And elect Donald J. Trump for high-powered showers and dishwashers, too!

      [Will add that I also got this person to agree: well if you want to take that line, fine, but we know that greenhouse gas emissions are exacerbating matters NOW, in historic time, and if the only way to reduce them is through human behavior/policy change, then that’s what we must do. Of course this person wasn’t an evangelical suicide-cult member so there’s that … which also points to why the powers-that-be have trebled-down on that angle of late.]

      I have no doubt that this (**broadly gestures at “bothsides” climate-science mishegas**)* is the ultimate source of the magnetizing gleam in Gohmert’s eye. And he probably thinks he’s being real smart about it, too — besides the whistling. Book it.


      *remember Penn State climate expert Michael Mann’s emails they got hold of (he’d asked someone for the “trick” to smooth a graphical curve and the rightwingosphere went nuts, claiming he was trying to fake data; they got him investigated — this was on the heels of Sandusky/JoePa, so Penn State’s general bad reputation helped facilitate the outcry). He was of course “exonerated”, cleared not only of any wrong-doing but shown to have been correct six ways to Sunday as I recall.

      Reply
  16. AndTheSlithyToves says:

    Gohmert is playing to the base IMHO.
    https://youtu.be/SUTYsl9TTvA
    Maybe he can lead the GQP House Delegation to meet with Putin on July 4th this year (it’s surprising he wasn’t in the last one–probably because he’s not a Senator).

    Reply
  17. What Constitution? says:

    It’s Andy Warhol’s fault, isn’t it? He’s the one who christened the idea that “everyone gets their 15 minutes of fame”, which removed the veneer that fame was somehow earned or related in some way to intelligence or insight or effort. It’s just whether you got “public” that matters, and the intertoobs enabled the deal and TV decided it had to chase the stupid to keep up.

    I give you that idiot woman at a PTA/Board of Supervisors meeting down in Florida in the early “no mask” days of the pandemic — who wrapped up her “testimony” during Open Mic Time with “I don’t wear a mask for the same reason I’m not wearing underwear: things gotta breathe!” It’s not just that this went viral, nor is it just that nobody had the presence of mind to inquire “excuse me, ma’am, do you understand that it is physically impossible for you to breathe through your crotch” — it’s that she was roundly cheered and high-fived by her co-idiots and left the lectern certain that she was a star. Louie Gohmert had a new hero in that moment, and now we get him trying to outdo the “appeal” of that kind of messaging; an elected official in Orange County perceives an opportunity to keep failing upwards by getting on TV to ask public health officials whether there are microchips in the vaccines. Don’t need no smarts, just idiocy and you’re famous.

    There is no as-yet-identified end to this spiral, which left unchecked will help usher in fascism (which Trump fully understands and intends) unless somebody starts pushing back in real time. I’m all for a cellphone app that consists of a button that will emit a “buzzer” noise when idiocy is spoken aloud in front of cameras. (In fairness, before the pandemic I was trying to postulate a similar app emitting clanking trash can lid noises, which American League crowds could use when the Astros came to town…).

    The Constitution may not bar people from being stupid, but neither does it guarantee them that nobody will notice or call them out on it.

    Reply

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