Saturday, October 31, 2015

Recommended Reading

Ben Carson may well be a brain surgeon, but based on the litany of extraordinarily moronic statements he's making in his bid to become president, he's also not especially bright. And yet, just like with Donald Trump, repeated demonstrations of rampant stupidity are doing nothing to dent the poll numbers for either of these presumptive frontrunners. Why is that, exactly? Mike Lofgren has some ideas in a new piece examining the rise of "anti-knowledge" as something that's prized by the GOP's base. Says he:
Anti-knowledge is a subset of anti-intellectualism, and as Richard Hofstadter has pointed out, anti-intellectualism has been a recurrent feature in American life, generally rising and receding in synchronism with fundamentalist revivalism. 
The current wave, which now threatens to swamp our political culture, began in a similar fashion with the rise to prominence in the 1970s of fundamentalists like Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson. But to a far greater degree than previous outbreaks, fundamentalism has merged its personnel, its policies, its tactics and its fate with a major American political party, the Republicans.
Read the rest here.

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