The Flutter-Ish 11 

Your Rajah says "Let dumb dogs lie"

Welcome once again, dear acolytes, neophytes and synchrophiliacs, to our world. These are heady times for us here at the Society For Making People Better, as your Rajah has come up with a new rule. You will have noticed in the last few Flutters that Rajah Bill has been remiss on his early promise to add at least one new rule to The SFMPB Rule Book with every edition of this newsletter. However, Rajah Bill is obliged to remind you that inventing new rules isn't as easy as it sounds.

Oh, we could spew out a new rule a minute were our purpose in this sphere of existence simply to produce new rules, couldn't we? We could be proclaiming ... just off the top of our head ... that no urination should take place without the bathroom door being closed all the way, or that we should speak slower and with a softer voice so that we're never heard shrieking out a meaningless avalanche of words in the manner of Ann Coulter.

But that is not our way here at the SFMPB (not to be confused with the Society For Making Peanut Butter). Our rules must serve our purpose, which is to guide humanity, one human at a time, to a more loving, more joyous, more enlightened, more intelligent and more liberal condition. And certainly, while humanity as a whole would be better off if all of our brothers and sisters were to pee in private and to never sound like a demented hag, that would not necessarily make them better people. Easier to be around, yes ... but not better.

Has Rajah Bill made himself clear enough for you?

Speaking of Rajah Bill, be forewarned that in the near future, there may be a titular restructuring at the SFMPB. It seems Rajah Bill's wife is growing impatient with Rajah Bill referring to himself as "Rajah Bill." Furthermore, she refuses to be seen in public with him wearing his turban. As Rajah Bill sees it, there is no point in being a rajah if he can't wear a turban, so he is casting about for a new title. Something with dignity, authority and pizzazz. If you have any suggestions, please send them to SFMPB Headquarters, c/o Rajah Bill.

Now, to what you have been waiting for: our new rule. First, though, let us examine the inspiration for this rule (which shall be designated No. 15 in the SFMPB Rule Book). It is born in part from findings (published in Psychological Science) by researchers from Brock University in Ontario (the Ontario in Canada, we believe, not the one across the river from Fruitland). The lead researcher, one Gordon Hodson, and his team have shown what most intelligent people have suspected since they first noticed a lot of the people around them were saying incredibly stupid things.

The value in Hodson's findings is that they demonstrate conclusively how those people saying those stupid things are, in fact, stupid (made implicit by their below-average IQs, which were tested as children and then again as adults) and that the stupid things they say often come from conservative and/or racist sentiments (as shown by their responses to loaded test questions). The study also establishes a definite link between such conservative values as strict order, rigid structure and endemic mistrust of anything different to an inclination to assume other ethnic groups are in some way inferior.

What we may take from these findings is not that being a racist or a conservative makes people stupid, but that stupid people gravitate toward the conservative and racist attitudes held by other stupid people. It is what Rajah Bill calls "The Great Wheel of Stupid," which, once it's rolling, is difficult to slow down, let alone stop.

This is especially true when stupid people have seized control of traditional de-stupifiers such as a state's public education system. (A vivid case in point was made when the Susan G. Komen Foundation, an organization known for its good work in making people more aware, was infiltrated by a highly placed stupid person who proceeded to do a stupid thing to Planned Parenthood, another bulwark against ignorance and brain atrophy. The stupid side lost in this example, but we must be continually on guard. Just because so many people are stupid doesn't mean they aren't making great strides.)

Since Hodson's work was released in January, Rajah Bill has been besieged by sympathizers wondering why he hasn't exploited this information to illuminate the disparity between right and left, conservatives and liberals. It explains so much, doesn't it? ... that the bewildering stupidity we see coming from the Tea Party rabble, the GOP candidates and our own state Legislature is simply what one might expect when it's understood the source of it all is authentically stupid people.

But even though there is now verifiable evidence to support him, Rajah Bill can see no real benefits to our beloved SFMPB were he to make a great hoopla over how stupid thoughts come from stupid people. After all, smart people have known that reality since the early days of human sapiency, and if stupid people understood it, they wouldn't be so stupid.

Which brings us to Rule No. 15: The most insurmountable symptom of being stupid is the inherent inability to recognize the condition, especially in oneself, so let us not waste energy telling stupid people they are being stupid as they have not the capacity to comprehend why we'd say such a thing.

Until the next Flutter, says soon-to-be-not Rajah Bill, toodle-oo.

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