Michelle Bachmann, I demand you answer this question!

Minnesota's dimwitted gift to humanity, Rep. Michelle Bachmann (R--but did you have to ask?) had this to say regarding swine flu (H/T Steph Z):

I find it interesting that it was back in the 1970s that the swine flu broke out then under another Democrat president Jimmy Carter. And I'm not blaming this on President Obama, I just think it's an interesting coincidence.

Leaving aside that it was Gerald Ford who presided over the last pandemic, if you are a real American, you will answer this question:

What is so fucking interesting about it?

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Between this and her glowing praise for carbon dioxide, I think I'll be very surprised if she ever says anything intelligent. My first thought was: "Who's Got The Brain?"

No, no, no. Don't you dare try to make sense of it. You just have to roll around in its delicious wingnuttery.

I'm starting to really like Michele Bachmann. As all the sane people leave the GOP, she more and more is one of its lodestone voices.


Are you absolutely sure that Michelle Bachmann isn't really a Poe who got a little carried away with the act?

Bachman is really Stephen Colbert in drag.

The number of things Michelle Bachman doesn't get is far too long a list to actually make much headway in educating her. It's a deliberate ignorance, I doubt she really wants to learn the truth because it would conflict with the crazed world view she has.

She's dumb. Stupid. An idiot. And silly, to boot. But let's not make intelligence a political attribute, shall we? There's far too much "dumb" on both sides of the aisle and it would be a waste of time to add up the deficit of smarts in Congress.

She makes me think of the Upton Sinclair quote:

"It is difficult to get a [wo]man to understand something when [her] salary depends upon [her] not understanding it"

By Chris Wright (not verified) on 28 Apr 2009 #permalink

Donna, it's a politically motivated statement. Her political affiliation is perfectly relevant. But please, feel free to find me her left-wing counterpart.

Bachman's high on crack. And by "crack" I mean narcissism.

Her thinking is pre-rational. It's primary process - concept A pairs with concept B because they share some emotional valence or superficial similarity. In her mind's eye, others feel the same, meaning that her feelings must be true.

Rational thinking is rule-based. Categories have carefully defined boundaries. A cannot also be not-A. Statements of fact must be corrected when wrong for the sake of clarity.

I suspect all primates are associative thinkers most of the time. You have to finish high school to learn how to think in an abstract, rational manner. And clear thinking, like any skill, requires regular practice.

Advertising is pre-rational. The art of pairing idealized self-representations with some product has become more subtle, sophisticated, and pervasive over the last several decades. Sometimes I worry that the constant marketing hum of mass media is making "stoned thinking" among grown-ups seem normal.

We need more settings where the sales pitch is banished and people are expected to set aside personal feeling for the sake of objectivity and serious problem-solving.

@Stephanie Z -- Carol Mosely Brown (sp?) Political ideology of one slant or the other is not a prerequisite for neurosis or psychosis. Do you think there are hordes of right wing woo-meisters posting on HuffPo? No... they are posting elsewhere with equal stupidity (perhaps even the same stupidity!)

Robert Heinlein wrote in his 1941 short story, "Logic of Empire": "You have attributed conditions to villainy that simply result from stupidity."

Another version of this principle is called Hanlon's Razor: "Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by stupidity."

Generally, this is a correct default position to take. But I submit that when bizarre statements issue from the mouth of a politician -- especially a GOP NeoCon -- one needs to reverse the default and consider the probable intended propaganda impact.

Michelle Bachmann and her NeoCon cohorts have practically no logical arguments to make for their reactionary positions. So they deliberately issue dishonest, emotional statements intended to provoke fear. Over the last eight years, we've learned that dishonest fearmongering is their primary stock in trade. They simply don't care if what they say makes sense. Making sense isn't their forte. They do no fact checking. Their own stupidity, ignorance, or insanity, if any, is irrelevant to them. They are thinking only of using the Big Lie.

There is no need to consider Bachmann either stupid, ignorant, or crazy. Instead, she's likely banking on the hope that enough of her audience suffers from some combination of the above infirmities, so that they will react emotionally. That it doesn't work is besides the point. The GOP doesn't have any other arrows left in their quiver, so they must either roll over and play dead, or appear as fools.

I am in no way convinced that she is stupid...and more's the pity.

Pal, she's not bright, but she is playing very well to her crowd. So, no, not that stupid.

Donna, Moseley Braun? Corrupt perhaps, and a colorful speaker, but Moseley Braun actually sponsored important legislation. And she apologized when her statements went over the top.

The only parallel I can see is that they were both embraced by their parties--both spoke at National Conventions in their hometowns. Of course, in Moseley Braun's case, it was before she became so controversial.

Wow, that woman's a real brainstorm - and from Minnesota too!

I've noted some interesting coincidences too - whenever the name "George W. Bush" is mentioned, a lot of people start laughing hysterically.

Just coincidental.

By ScepticsBane (not verified) on 29 Apr 2009 #permalink

Bachman just looks stupid. She is therefore annoying as hell to behold, even at a safe distance.

Even Sarah Palin could walk into a room and not disclose her vapidity until opening her craw. Bachman, on the other hand, is identifiable as a fifth-degree slack-jawed mouth-breather from at least a block away.

What goes through the heads of politicians like this at the end of the day? "Wow, I really outdid myself today--covered every color of 'tard." Probably not, but anyway.

Heh, whenever I hear the standard drivel of "there's idiots on both sides of isle", I want somebody to point out to me who the right-wing Chomsky is. I have a hard time counting the idiots, but when it comes to political extremists with some brains it's pretty lopsided.

Clearly swine flu only infects humans when it perceives that the administration is "soft on infection." And let's be blunt: that means a Democratic administration (although a Green Party administration would be even worse, potentially encouraging not merely swine flu but butterfly flu, cheese flu, and, in some regions, velociraptor fossil flu). A Republican administration deters swine flu by ensuring swift and certain punishment of both the infectious agent and the flu-loving host that provides it a home, not just namby-pamby medical treatment of "victims."


Clearly she knows how to play the media. I suspect she's saying stupid things because these particular stupid things appeal to her stupid constituents and she doesn't care how many educated people laugh at her. It's not as if most of us can vote against her.

Of course, we can give money to whoever runs against her next time. Maybe even in the primary, if the local GOP manages to come up with an intelligent moderate (yeah right).

The only "logical" explanation I can come up with for this is that the GOP's just trying to play the old "associate by endless repetition" game. They've been embarrassed by Sen. Collins' expressed pride in defeating a pandemic prevention program as part of the stimulus package, and this is how they'll counter. It's probably not even as convoluted as Dr. Benway suggests - it's just that if you repeat an "association" often enough, some folks will just take it for granted that there is, in fact, an association.

Hmmm... I find it very interesting that the initials MB stand for Michelle Bachman and Moronic Baboon. I'm not saying that Michelle Bachman is a moronic baboon, but I do find the coincidence very interesting.

By Michael "Brown… (not verified) on 02 May 2009 #permalink