Sabrina is right, when she responded to the rather idiotic question posed by Politico today, “Is Rick Perry Dumb?,” that certainly, it’s a problem when conservatives have a knee-jerk reaction against intellectualism. Those serious about politics do benefit from studying the past and the great political philosophers.
Yet there is something simply infuriating about the mainstream media habit of assuming that liberals are smart and conservatives are dumb. Democrats don’t have to release their transcripts (President Obama), or even if they do and they show a pretty mediocre performance (Al Gore), the media assumes they are geniuses anyway, and beat that story line into the public. Coming from an ivy league school means you are an intellectual giant… unless of course you are a Republican like Bush, in which case you can still be tarred a moron.
I went to graduate school at Harvard, and can atest that not everyone there is a genuis. Many weren’t even particularly well read or thoughtful. But it’s not necessary to dump on the ivy league to object to this tiresome discussion, which seems to come up with each election.
Perhap the larger point is that the President isnt’ supposed to have to be an all-knowing master of the universe pulling the strings so that the country can continue to operate. In fact, one of the most attractive things about Gov. Perry is that he seems to get this and has pledged to try to return power to the people, rather than accumulate more in Washington.
And one of the most troubling things about President Obama is he is a know-it-all. He seems to think that if only he could control everything–not have to deal with those pesky Republicans in Congress, bother with the Courts, or even consider the desires of all those voters, who he considers too stupid to understand and appreciate his grand plan–he could make everything work perfectly. The economy would hum and the “earth would heal.”
Smart people know that they don’t know everything.
So who exactly is the dumb politician we have to worry about in the next election?