September 24, 2004


Warning: S.A.T. Words Ahead

I'm not a fan of everything Ted Rall draws and writes, but he has a certain shit-disturbing je ne sais quois that I truly admire. In Rall's latest editorial he (almost persuasively) argues that not everyone should have the right to vote:

Demonstrating that stupefying ignorance can be bipartisan, another Ohioan interviewed for the same article said she is against the war in Iraq because, like 42 percent of her fellow Americans, she thinks Iraq was behind 9/11: "We shouldn't be over there building them back up because they didn't build our towers back up." She is wrong on so many levels that it makes my brain hurt.


All men are created equal, declared the Founders. But as Alexis de Tocqueville wrote in "Democracy in America," universal suffrage counts upon the existence of a responsible, well-educated citizenry in order to result in political equality. If you give the vote to morons, you get the "tyranny of the masses"--a lumpen proletariat prone to manipulation by demagogues and fools--such as that which created chaos and bloodshed in post-revolutionary France. We're all equal at birth, but what we do later determines whether or not our opinions are worthwhile.

At this writing, the world's greatest nation flails under the rule of buffoons and madmen, bogged down in two optional wars we're actually losing. The world's richest economy is shedding jobs, running up debts and building nothing for the future. Voters, offered an election year alternative to the subliterate idiot who single-handedly created this mess, spurn him for a leader even dumber than they are. America has become a stultocracy: government by morons, for morons.


In the Old South, literacy tests were used to disenfranchise blacks. Alternatively, a basic political literacy test should be used to ensure that anyone who picks ESPN over CNN--regardless of race or creed--stays home on Election Day.

I think it's the last bit that'll get young Ted in trouble...

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