Wednesday, November 3, 2010

It Helps to be Smart and Elitist

I'll continue to update the post below this one with poems from a decline, so keep watch - in the meantime, I had to post a small and smug update that Colorado retained a solid blue wave in a massive sea of red, electing a Democrat for governor, sending Mike Bennet (pictured right) back to Washington in a very tight senatorial race, electing several more Dems to the House, and defeating a raft of very idiotic initiatives, usually by margins exceeding a 65 percent "no" vote. This isn't because of some magical mountain difference that places Colorado in the California winky category, though all those new marijuana dispensaries in the state clearly help. No, it's because Coloradans are smarter, prettier, more physically fit, etc. than the rest of the nation. Stand up and take a freakin' bow, Colorado!

Obama has been running away from the "elitist" label in a nation where the uneducated bumpkins are in charge of the train, but I'll go ahead and grab the moniker, and not because I'm a snob. Since I was about 8 years old or so, I've thought my mental capacities were around average, but I was utterly appalled at how uninterested most human beings seemed to be at learning more about the world around them, bettering their mental, physical, and spiritual lives, trying to be aware of as many aspects of the world as possible. In fact, with the rise of Quaaludes in the mid-70s, the strategy seemed to be to turn off as many synapses as possible, and this general trend has survived through decades of increasing mind-numbing on all fronts. Hence, I'm a reverse-elitist by default - I ain't so much to look at, it's just that everyone else is trying so hard to be a know-nothing. And that's what sets Colorado apart this year.

However, one should not conclude too much about the Tea Party or dummies in general - David Weigel did a great column on this in Slate. Dummies will come in all shapes, sizes, and parties, and the Tea Party will merely form the most myth-loving front.

And I pointed out to folks in a Facebook post, we must be careful not to exhaust ourselves on the support of candidates, as the elections are largely celebrity talent shows, brimming with hatred (thanks largely to the US Supreme Court's Citizens United ruling). Yes, it is worthwhile to vote within certain parameters, but representative democracy is largely a farce, since both Republicans and Democrats are equally plugged in to the power elite, and all elections are run on the basis of money (corporate money, by and large). So remember to spend the bulk of your time working on community issues of environment, economics, war and peace, while treating elections as the dog and pony shows that signify nothing. And remember it's all right to call yourself "elitist" when you live on a planet of morons.


Friko said...

Ha, I am just now drafting a post on elitism and high standards, coming down in favour of them, in a different context from yours. Not reverse-elitist but unreconstructed elitist.

Commiserations on the outcome of the election generally and congratulation to the smart folk your end.

I saw you on Ruth's blogroll. Anybody there is worth a visit.

libertyvini said...

It isn't elitist in the Eastern Establishment sense that you feel, it is in the 1% paying attention sense. In that context, there is a surprising spectrum of thoughtful opinion among the attentive elites. As opposed to the statist elites, who just want to steal everything.

Loring Wirbel said...

Friko and libertyvini, agreed on all counts!