Second day in, and we’re still living a way-terrible fairy tale:
Today is one of those days where I’m gobsmacked that 74 million Americans lived through tens of thousands of needless deaths last year and said, yes, sign me up for more of that
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) January 1, 2021
And yes, I’m also ‘gobsmacked’ and even more perplexed how any human being could even consider the value of the T-Rump, a guy without a bit of anything good — he’s 100-percent all bad. Not one single bit of a redeeming quality. Yet these assholes did give him 74 million votes and continue to believe against reality and facts that Joe Biden and Democrats stole the election.
One way-downer off the election for me was how red the country — I was under the impression prior to Nov. 3, that given the polling and news reports there would be a blue wave, a blue tsunami in the election, but way-no. Nearly half of this country are gobsmacked lunatics.
Even with science, a reasoning is up-ended — in a review early last month at Berkeley.edu some expert-scholars offered some research results:
How do we explain this seemingly mass rejection of democratic processes — and the rejection of verified reality?
In a series of interviews, Berkeley scholars across a range of disciplines suggested that this is a story not just of numbers, but of a complex interplay of class and racial antagonism, aggravated by despair and social drift and amplified by new communication platforms, converging to what some see as a troubling psychological phenomenon.
Some suggested that generations of creeping economic insecurity have inspired deep anger, compelling many voters in the white middle and working classes to embrace Trump, flaws and all, because he challenges the American status quo.
Adam Jadhav, a Ph.D. student in geography, traveled to rural Henry, Illinois, where he lived as a child, for research that explored the dynamics of rural populism.
While the picture there is complex, he said, one hard-line conservative was blunt:
Votes for Trump were “a hand grenade for the establishment,” he told Jadhav.
“Trump does some stupid ass things, says a lot of stupid ass things, doesn’t keep his mouth shut when he should. [But] it was worth it to try to shake the system.”
Others see a loyalty to Trump that is so intense, and so unshakeable, that it exerts a cult-like gravity.
“Trump has claimed that he’s the ‘chosen one,’” said Jennifer A. Chatman, an influential researcher on leadership and organizational cultures and associate dean at the UC Berkeley Haas School of Business.
“He’s said he’s super-smart, a genius. … He has established his image as the leader who is cleaning up Washington and the savior of the common person so convincingly that none of his supporters are looking beyond that to see that, in fact, many of the things he’s doing are exactly the opposite.”
Gabriel Lenz, an expert in political psychology, is the author of Follow the Leader? How Voters Respond to Politicians’ Performance and Policies (University of Chicago Press, 2012).
He sees political opinion shaped by a force that is almost prosaic: an apathetic lack of awareness.
Lenz and other political scientists call it “rational ignorance.”
“It’s hard for political junkies to believe,” Lenz said, “but most people have much better things to do with their lives than pay attention to politics. If you ask, ‘How, after the last four years, could people want more of this?’, well, people are partisan. The country is polarized. And it’s not clear that people are paying much attention to the details.”
And a conclusion not nice — from Adam Jadhav, the PHd student mentioned above, the T-Rump landscape “a slow-rolling catastrophe” with a terrible ending:
“I hate to use cancer metaphors,” he said, “but American politics has a deep-rooted metastasis. You can’t ignore it. And pretending it’s not cancer will not make it go away.”
Add conspiracy theories and such, we be fucked…
(Illustration: Salvador Dalí’s ‘Galatea of the Spheres,’ found here).