The Finch Formerly Known As Gold

23 February 2008

Quote of the week

So we have all these half-assed, even quarter-assed, candidates for the highest office in the land, and we wonder: how in the hell did this happen? The answer, my friend, is looking back at you from the mirror:

The underlying problem was identified centuries ago at the Constitutional Convention.

The problem was and is democracy. The theory of democracy holds that the cumulative opinions of the whole populace will produce a synergy little short of magic, with a legitimacy only a deeply vetted consensus can claim. It's useful to remember that alchemy was a contemporary notion. In practice, the informed can be thought of as a negligible contamination of the uninformed, and the uninformed are probably outnumbered by the misinformed and the disinterested, if taken together.

A subgroup of the misinformed gets its misinformation from Big Media, and thinks itself informed as a result. I propose we designate them "disinformed."

(From the Woodpile Report, suggested by Francis W. Porretto.)

Posted at 8:59 AM to QOTW

I'd say disinformed implies deliberate intent to mislead, which may or may not be the case -- incompetence can explain the overwhelming majority of misfeasance we tend reflexively to ascribe to malice.

Perhaps the correct term would be dysinformed.

Posted by: McGehee at 2:34 PM on 23 February 2008

Actually, back then they put certain checks and balances on the rule of the mob, which is why we're a representative democracy and whatnot.

However, since then, the purveyors and benefitters of mob rule have worked systematically to not only consolidate power at the highest level, but also to remove those checks and balances (see also direct election of Senators are the calls every four years for direct election of Presidents).

Posted by: Brian J. at 12:51 PM on 24 February 2008