Ask A Genius 383 – Cudgels of Stupidity
September 15, 2018
[Beginning of recorded material]
Scott Douglas Jacobsen: What happens when power enters the wrong hands?
Rick Rosner: Cudgels of stupidity that end up in the wrong hands, end up in the hands of people with no morality.
Jacobsen: If we look at the lies of Trump, they continually catch up with him, in some manner. It doesn’t amount to any strict action. However, it does catch up. People lose respect for him, see through him.
Rosner: If you look at his popularity ratings, they started at 50% because people were willing to give him a chance, but then they slowly sagged into the mid-30s and often for the high 30s. Now, they crept into the 40s.
Because people have had a year and a half to consider Trump. They figure: if they like his agenda, then they can deal with the terrible crap that he does. The conservatives are much louder in shouting their conspiracy theories and in what they think is good about Trump.
People who think Trump is terrible to outnumber those who think he is okay. But there is not a concerted effort on the non-conservative media to contextualize Trump to make people understand in a yelly way – the way the conservatives do – to make people who hate Trump to structure it.
It is structuring it so we understand why he’s terrible. But we have a harder time than the conservatives in making the leap from him being terrible on a personal level to why it is terrible for the country.
Conservatives can tell you Obama was terrible for the country. They can tell you Trump is great for the country. I don’t think non-conservatives have that much-structured argument. We know things suck.
But we do not have as much clarity as the conservatives, which is a bad thing.
Jacobsen: It comes out in who farther right conservative Republicans direct their vitriol at or heaviest critique. The heaviest critique does not lie with the Democratic Party.
It lies with Islamic terrorists. That form and minority of Islam is Islamist, and so a political form of it. If I reflect on what they point to, they could point the finger back. In their own party, they have Dominionists and Reconstructionists.
Rosner: Every time, or often, I go to work with Lance. When I walk in, he’s got a podcast going. Some conservative guy is yelling at him, just yelling and making some complicated for why everything is a Deep State conspiracy against brave conservative figureheads like Trump.
Then it is making those arguments at the top of their lungs. Liberals do not have people yelling like that. We have people being reasonable. I am not sure the reasonable people helping people coming to their own conclusions is as effective as the yelly conservative guys on the other side.
Jacobsen: That leads to a question, “Do most Americans seem equipped to think critically and rationally about issues facing them in the modern world, at least in their own country?”
Rosner: Yes, most do. But there is a segment of people – a big thick segment – who don’t have the time, interest, or, in some cases, the wherewithal to think critically. Not everyone wants to watch three hours of political news a day.
They want stuff digested for them. For those people, there are conservative media providing powerful, simple arguments for them. I do not see powerful arguments being presented as much on the liberal side.
The liberal side is more do-it-yourself. Here is the news. Here is what’s going on. You guys build a worldview based on the news we’re bringing to you. But I would think a segment of the population would be okay being yelled at from a non-conservative point of view, and being persuaded by the yelling and the simple, powerful arguments.
I think people susceptible to simple, powerful arguments are not just Trump people, except Trump and conservatives are the ones making the loud, powerful, simple arguments.
[End of recorded material]
American Television Writer
Scott Douglas Jacobsen
Editor-in-Chief, In-Sight Publishing
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