The Apotheosis of Stupid


Oct 20

If ever there was a time the world needed “smart,” that time might be right now. Why now? Well, for one thing, humanity is facing mass extinction. And you must consider this: it didn’t start with stupid. It started with greed.

We’ve talked about climate change in two articles:

  1. Global Climate Change
  2. Climate Change Denial Redux

One thing we’ve not discussed is where we went wrong and why we are here now facing mass extinction, and I would gladly document all of this except that I did the research over 20 years ago and I’ve been telling people about the conclusions for so long . . . I just don’t remember the references.

So . . . what you’re getting is what I know to be true, but I cannot prove . . . but does it matter? We all know we’re in deep doodoo.

How We Got Here

President Jimmy Carter’s energy initiatives were aimed at getting the US 20% energy independent by the year 2000. One of Ronald Reagan’s first official acts was to remove the solar panels from the White House which quickly led to quashing all of Carter’s initiatives, and boosting profits to the fossil fuel industry. Their profits climbed immensely, especially helped by right-wing socialism, or as they called them, subsidies.

It was very easy for Reagan to give away wealth to the wealthy because of the stupid in America. He somehow convinced his base, the abundantly stupid, that giving money to the rich would trickle down and make the masses all rich. Even his vice president at the time, George Herbert Walker Bush called that, “Voodoo economics.”

Thus it was first greed, followed by stupid, and the continuation of stupid goes on still today as all this wealth trickles down on them in the form of stagnant wages, food insecurity, and bankruptcies.

Let us ignore the economics here because, well, we’ve already posted a Short Course in Economics, and you can go there any time to see how the rich got richer while the poor got poorer, because we must get back to climate change.

The History of What Never Happened

As I said above, Carter’s plan was to make us 20% energy independent by the year 2000. What no one knew at the time was that energy technology would expand exponentially in just 20 short years, and that we would have been 80% energy independent by 2000. Scientists then estimated that in 20 more years (2020), we would be 100% energy independent, with upwards of 90 – 95% of that energy being “green energy,” depending on who’s made the calculations.

“The only two infinite things are the universe and stupidity, and I’m not sure about the universe.”

The above quotation, often misattributed to Einstein, is missing the third infinite thing in this world: greed.

Greed and stupidity have no limits.

And we are here because of both.

Look Around

Stupid is abundant and everywhere. Flat earthers, moon landing deniers, vaccine deniers, mask and social distancing deniers, pandemic deniers, and most of all, truth and fact deniers. Just the other night in a debate in Oklahoma (I think they were both running for Governor) one candidate claimed that there was more crime in Oklahoma than in New York or California, and was laughed at by the moderator as well as her opponent. The fact is, she was right. But facts do not matter. We are way beyond facts. We are into feelings. If it feels true, screw the facts. This is the hill we will all die on.

Thinking is so Overrated

We meet teachers in this life almost every day. What makes someone a teacher? Students.

If you’re willing to listen, then you become a student and the person you’re listening to becomes the teacher. And if the teacher is teaching you nonsense or something that is patently false, as a “good” student, it is up to you to find out. It is up to you to determine if that teacher was teaching you the truth or lies. Not all teachers teach the truth. Stupid is found at every level in society, and it is up to all of us as intelligent, thinking students to find the truth.

“The truth that makes men free is for the most part the truth which men prefer not to hear.”


Herbert Sebastian Agar

“The simplicity of truth is annoying to man.”



“You cannot tell people the truth about their lives―it drives them crazy.”


Werner Erhard

“Men occasionally stumble on the truth, but most of them pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing had happened.”


Winston Churchill

“A lie told often enough becomes the truth.”



“The truth does not change according to your ability to stomach it.”


Flannery O’Connor

“Truth is treason in an empire of lies.”


George Orwell

A Pandemic of Stupid

Some people are just born stupid, but for the most part, most of the stupid in the world have been raised to be stupid. Our brains require proper nutrition and our minds are sponges. And nutrition is a huge factor.

For example, families that eat fish get more iodine into their systems. One study found there was a fifteen point difference in IQs between those children who had iodine in their diets and those who did not. [Ref]

Have you ever heard of the “Cycle of Poverty?” Poor families cannot afford proper nutrition, thus the children are raised without enough nourishment for their brains, and being slow, can qualify only for jobs that pay poorly and when they marry and have children, their offspring will not get the nutrition their brains need and thus the cycle continues.

Racists tend to be less educated than non racists and tend to rank lower on the IQ scale. [Is Racism Just a Form of Stupidity?]

I’m not happy with the IQ scale, by the way. Racism is built into it. The IQ scale was created for white, middle class individuals and really is outdated, but right now that’s all we’ve got.

Then there’s Dunning-Kruger.

In other words, some people are too stupid to know how stupid they are. And I think that could also be applied to mental illness too, but that’s a whole nother subject.

But I’m pretty sure that the main reason people are stupid is they are just too lazy, too busy, too apathetic to want to think.

Allow me to tell you a little story . . . .

Some people have called me “genius.” And at one time my IQ (there’s that thing again) was rather high, but because of PTSD and the resulting brain damage from trauma, my poor IQ has shrunk.

The thing is, I do stupid things. For example, I read labels. Smart, eh? Always read the labels on the food you eat. Best to read before you buy. But then I was diagnosed with diabetes (and I wrote this: What I Don’t Know About Diabetes Could Fill an Encyclopedia) and while I was creating new low carb dishes, someone told me to read the labels on my sugar alternatives and I thought to myself, “I have read those labels.”

Nope. I had not. I saw the calorie count and that was it. Wanna know what I missed?


Now that, folks, was just plain stupid of me. I had assumed that with zero calories, there must be zero carbs and yet just one of them contained zero carbs and that was stevia.

Yes, smart people can do stupid things, but the truly smart people learn from their stupid mistakes.

As a retired educator, I can tell you right here and now that a great measure of intelligence is how quickly one can learn, and that definitely includes learning from mistakes. As an educator I often spotted the brightest students within a few short days. They were the “learners.” They were easy to spot by that look of awe, with eyes widened; it was a look that said, “Hey, I get it!”

And with proper teaching methods, a good teacher can make the boring interesting, and make students want to learn, and that’s when one really gets a thrill out of teaching because every individual you work with wants to use their brains, wants to learn, wants to excel.

To learn, one must want to learn. And thus one must want to use one’s brains.

So here is my story:

A friend invited me to her cabin on a lake. When I got there, she told me she’d also invited up a niece and her partner. I’m a “more the merrier” kind of person.

When they arrived, the news we all had to hear was that her niece had just been diagnosed with diabetes.

“So no sugary snacks!”

Then they started digging into all the wonderful treats they’d brought for the weekend: Doritos, potato chips, Fritos, popcorn. I hadn’t seen a bag of Fritos for “like forever,” so I asked if I could read the package. She handed them to me and told me not to read out loud. She wasn’t interested. At that time, Fritos was one of the first to remove partially hydrogenated oils and I’d not read the label since they’d done that. But there were 15 grams of carbs per ounce.

I’d brought a couple of nice steaks for my friend and I. I always buy locally from people I know, people who raise their animals without chemicals and humanely.

They had brought some steaks. And when the grill was all fired up, being the gentleman I am, I told them to go ahead and fix their steaks. I’d wait.

“You sure you don’t want us to barbecue them?”

“No. We’ll wait.”

My friend and I sipped a bit of wine and watched the two of them barbecue their steaks . . . way past the well done mark. They brought a big plate with four flat steaks to the table and then poured barbecue sauce all over them and “mmmmmm.” I still hear them both saying, “mmmmmm.”

My friend liked her’s medium rare. I like charred on the outside, but still mooing on the inside.

It was an interesting evening. I enjoyed sitting back, sipping wine, and observing the others. At one point I asked if I could try their steak. There was one left on the plate. They told me to take it, but no, just a corner.

It was cardboard. They passed the barbecue sauce. It was quite sweet; sweet barbecued cardboard. They must have each consumed 150 grams of carbs in the barbecue sauce alone. I remember loving the wine, it was a rosé. They drank diet pop, although there really is no such thing unless you make it yourself at home.

I figure they both consumed about a thousand grams of carbs that evening: the evening of the day she’d been diagnosed diabetic.

A couple of years later my friend informed me that her niece had suffered a massive heart attack and did I want to attend the funeral?

“Will they be serving sweet barbecued cardboard?”

Thinking is just too much bother

My representative voted against the bill that would restrict the fossil fuel industry from price gouging. On his Facebook page, a couple of supporters told me it was because the bill contained pork. They’d not read the bill. I read the bill. There was no pork. Then I was told (by his supporters) that all Democrat bills contain pork.

Reading the bill was just too much bother. Thinking was too much bother. For far too many citizens (voters) it’s just all too much bother.

Best to go with your gut. If it feels right, that’s all you need to know.

And now we’re facing an extinction event, gobbling up carbs, gobbling up energy from dead dinosaurs, slathering barbecue sauce on everything, and not using our creator-given senses because it’s just too much bother.

Speaking of our “creator,” I follow this character on Twitter. He’s a lot of fun. His book is hilarious. Just click the image and you’ll use our affiliate link to the book. Thank you.