A friend sent a link to an article that mentioned something I'd missed: Todd "No-One-Gets-Pregnant-From-Legitimate-Rape"
How far beyond appalling is it that people like these sit on such an important committee? Not to mention that they've all been voted into office, by voters, fellow citizens, the very people whose future is so jeopardized by such ignorance. People by definition already victimized by anti-intellectualism, and proud as hell of it. In what scenario will they ever change their minds?
I don't see it getting better, which is why I've begun to think the election will be lost. Of late, having been born of Reaganism, Americans seem especially prone to recoiling from the hard stuff, to resorting to magical thinking when the going gets tough. And to selfishness, when pitching in is what's most needed. Even if these tendencies are mostly seen among those of teabagging proclivities, their numbers are enough to bring it all down. What would it take for those who elected such blockheads ever to un-elect them, to abandon the force-fed ignorance they so desperately need to maintain equilibrium? Ain't happening: as we've seen with blinding clarity, you don't need to control all branches of government to bring it all crashing down. Enabling ignorance works.
In a democracy like ours (meaning one that's no longer based on a thoughtful electorate and cooperation among legislators, but on the power of moneyed interests and their ability to deceive the willingly deceived and buy off the rest) this sort of ignorance is self-perpetuating. Because, in a continuous feedback loop, it leads to the degradation of education, to unwillingness to invest in those things that might improve it and give kids a chance to learn. The more people like this roam the halls of Congress, the more certain it is that Americans will lose the ability or desire to recognize the danger. While America willingly cedes the future to more enlightened countries, ones willing to invest in its kids, our citizens elect more and more
So maybe I should put it this way: We're approaching critical mass (if we haven't already passed it): the upcoming election is the last chance to reverse the deadly feedback loop. If the Rs win, the slim chance of mitigating the trend will be lost forever. Because when, in the formerly great (or, at least, non-awful) Republican party, there's no more countervalance to guys like