Among the issues most commonly discussed are individuality, the rights of the individual, the limits of legitimate government, morality, history, economics, government policy, science, business, education, health care, energy, and man-made global warming evaluations. My posts are aimed at intelligent and rational individuals, whose comments are very welcome.

"No matter how vast your knowledge or how modest, it is your own mind that has to acquire it." Ayn Rand

"Observe that the 'haves' are those who have freedom, and that it is freedom that the 'have-nots' have not." Ayn Rand

"The virtue involved in helping those one loves is not 'selflessness' or 'sacrifice', but integrity." Ayn Rand

18 May 2010

Are Democrats Illiterate?

I propose to answer this question scientifically.

All good science begins with careful observation of reality.  So, let us examine the easily observed facts of Democrat behavior with special attention to the ability to read and reading comprehension.

Let us take note that in the last few months, many instances have been documented of Democrat Congressmen indicating that they have no to little idea of the content of the rather short and easily read fundamental documents of the United States of America.  They have failed to attribute our acknowledgment of our equal and sovereign individual rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness to the Declaration of Independence, often mis-attributing that to the Constitution.  They have commonly referred to a General Welfare Clause in very confused ways and wrongly attributed powers to it, which are very, very far from its intent and context in the Constitution.  They have repeatedly made it clear that they do not understand the essays of the Federalist Papers which worked so hard to explain the purpose of the provisions of the Constitution.

They embrace socialism despite its failures among the Jamestown settlers and the early Pilgrims, in New Harmony, Indiana following 1825 when Robert Owen purchased it for his communitarian society, the failure of the socialist experiments in Italy, Germany, the USSR, Cambodia, China, North Korea, Nicaragua, and Venezuela.  The Swedes and the British had to back away from their more extreme adoption of socialism.  Yet, our Democrats are unaware of these problems.  Even in Canada, the more conservative recent management of the economy has allowed Canada a relatively quicker improvement in the recession than we have had in the U.S.  None of these facts are known or understood by the leadership of the Democrat Party, who so much want the U.S. government to duplicate those failed experiments.

The Democrats continue to claim that man is facing a global warming crisis, despite widely available accounts describing the huge failure of the science that was supposed to support that hypothesis.  They continue to believe that ethanol use mandates will help us achieve energy independence and give us cleaner air, though many easily read accounts inform us that this is not so.  They tell us that alternative energy will make America energy-independent and produce jobs, even as they destroy the coal industry and would provide unreliable electric power.  Again, many easily available accounts make it clear that alternative energy is not yet and will not probably be soon ready for prime time use.  They express ignorance of the many warming periods and cooling periods of the Earth's past, despite such records being easily available to the reader.

The Democrats still claim that minimum wage laws are good for those poor victims of discrimination that they, the Democrats champion, the young black male.  They have failed to read the accounts of how this minimum wage law proclivity has caused skyrocketing unemployment among inner city young black males.  They care not about those living in low cost-of-living rural flyover areas who are also badly affected by these thoughtless and cruel laws.

The Democrats have failed to note that the history books and economics have clearly shown that the life of the average man and the poor has been hugely benefited by the free markets of Capitalism.  Yet, they rail against it and the profit motive at every opportunity.  How many times have we heard Obama sneer at the profit motive and at those who have too much income, in his poor opinion.  Yet, the pursuit of wealth by the able has always created more jobs and more life security for the less able.  How has a college graduate and Harvard Law School graduate managed to be so completely ignorant of the literature of history and of economics?

Let us consider the Democrat Congressman in his home lair.  Bills are presented to him for his vote and he votes for them without reading them.  I suppose this could be an irresponsible act of laziness, but it may be that they are not able to read or if they do, they cannot understand what they have read.  In fact, a couple of Democrat Congressmen have actually said that they did not read the bills, such as the health care bill we call ObamaCare, because they would not understand it if they read it!  Given that one Congressman representing an Atlanta, GA district believes that islands float and that putting too many people on an island may make it tip over, the idea that there is a huge lack of reading comprehension takes on an elevated probability.  Obama himself has made many claims about the ObamaCare bill before it was passed and since he signed it into law, which are obviously wrong.  Now, we know he can read, because of his use of teleprompters.  But, this says nothing about his reading comprehension.  Either that is very poor, or he is lying to us almost constantly.

Another recent example of reading disabilities among Democrats is the short Arizona bill which carefully instructs the police to check for lawful presence in the United States when they are checking out another infraction of the law.  The bill clearly states that racial profiling must not be applied, and yet Obama says the law is bad because it will cause racial profiling.  Eric Holder, the Attorney General, says he is considering taking the state of Arizona to court over the illegal discrimination in the Arizona bill.  Yet, he has not read this short bill, so he is either hugely irresponsible or he has a very high threshold of dread for reading.  An Assistant Secretary of the State Department has apologized to the Chinese over and over about how the Arizona bill puts us on the same human rights plane the Chinese are on.  Apparently, he has read the Arizona bill and concluded that illegal aliens will be returned to countries where they will be shot as in Chinese returns of escaped North Koreans or that we will treat illegal aliens as the Chinese treat the Tibetans.  One wonders how he has read such actions into the bill.  Many, many thousands of other Democrats have made very negative assessments of the Arizona bill, implying that they either cannot comprehend what they read or they so dread trying to read and comprehend that they prefer to declare the law un-American to actually reading it.

Having come to the end of my observations on Democrats and reading, I must allow that in the total light of my understanding of human beings, those most complex and mysterious of all entities, I cannot be sure that Democrats cannot comprehend what they read.  The problem is that I know of counter-examples.  Being a scientist, I have worked with many a Democrat.  Some of them can read science and comprehend it, unless, at least in some cases, the science is said to have political and economic implications.  When these scientists read about topics infused with social and political implications, they suddenly have a selective loss of reading comprehension.  All things inconsistent with their allegiance to their dogma fall into their blind spot.  They simply cannot see them.  They cannot comprehend them.

So, I do believe there is a reading comprehension problem and even a thinking comprehension problem.  The Democrat problem is so deep an indoctrination into an ideology heavily laced with emotive feelings of envy, hate, cruelty, tribalism, group identity, self-loathing, self-victimization, guilt, uncertainty, dread, and other joyless feelings, that they cannot comprehend anything that does not fit into that negative worldview.  Where I see harmony, the satisfaction of individual needs and desires, a richness of choices, trades with mutual benefits, and equal opportunity in the free markets, they are only able to see exploitation, deprivation in not having something someone else has, having to make painful decisions about what they want, and any trade must have a winner and a loser.  This different worldview is so basic, I wonder if it is almost always embedded in most people while they are still children.  Thereafter, the Democrat simply cannot comprehend the world as it is so clear to me.


Greg said...

Once upon a time, at the People's Republic of the UC @ Santa Crux I had a number of talks with self-admitted socialists and communists. When I pointed out the abject failures of real-world communism the reply would be, "...but REAL communism hasn't been tried yet..."

So I suspect that an additional factor to your analysis might be, "well, OUR version of socialism/statism/nannyism hasn't been tried yet!"

Computer programmers has a "not invented here" group-think. Since it wasn't invented there it has to be written from scratch. Never mind that perfectly usable, debugged, code already exists.

Perhaps our Dems and Rinos feel that THEIR version of whatever won't be as broken as the other guy's version.

Maybe they're just incapable of learning...

Charles R. Anderson, Ph.D. said...

Indeed, Greg, this is a commonly used escape hatch. Of course, there are an infinite number of variations on socialism and the committed socialist is bound to have at least a few ideas on how he might rule his socialist utopia a bit differently than any of the failed experiments.

There are at least a few fatal flaws here. First, he is an individual, even though he may be determined to submerge his own individuality in group identity and group think to some degree. Put him in charge of the socialist utopia design and practice and all of a sudden many of those different tweaks his individual character calls for are lost to the demands of others.

Or, he, being less than a 100% vicious soul, is knocked to the ground and beaten up by a real bully, such as Hitler, Lenin, Stalin, Mao, or Castro and it no longer matters that he had a vision for a slightly more humane version of socialism. This will happen because socialism pits the government against the individual and such a government must set one group at the necks of another group in order to stay in power. It cannot deal with the individuality of individuals and when it claims to meet the needs of the People, it must set the needs of some against the needs of others. In such a war of all against all, the vicious, or at least the most power hungry, tend to rise to the top and take control of government. These very power hungry people are usually not the most refined in the theory of socialism. They are just pragmatic power seekers. Which is what Saul Alinsky was and Obama is now emulating his power-grabbing techniques.

Greg said...

"They are just pragmatic power seekers...

Love that comment. Pragmatic power seekers with, perhaps, better propaganda (all the "for the people" rhetoric) than past power seekers.

And then those guys somehow manage to become extremely wealthy along the way. Isn't Castro a billionaire? Even if they aren't they seem to have a pretty lavish lifestyle. I've heard that Obama is living rather lavishly these days.

Setting one group against the other does seem to make the power grab easier. They're too busy sniping at each other to see what's happening.

Well, every now and then, at least in this country, people wake up and do something interesting. Hopefully the new blood coming into office over the next couple of years remembers why they're there.

Charles R. Anderson, Ph.D. said...

It is believed that Obama had an income of about $5 million in 2009. He did give his $1.4 million for the Nobel Peace Prize to charity. Still, isn't $5 million of income more than a person needs according to Obama?

I do hope that the People remain angry and do an great job of sending our Washington DC tormentors home over the next few election cycles. Each newly installed Congressman must be carefully monitored to weed out the new bad actors. Weeds keep growing up in the constitutional garden, so constant weeding is needed. I hope eventually there will be an opportunity to do some weeding of the Supreme Court also.