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    How’s That Gravitas Workin’ For Ya?

    How’s That Gravitas Workin’ For Ya?

    Remember, when you hear about how important it is that the next Republican nominee for President have “gravitas,” the following have been designed by people with gravitas:

    • The TSA’s scanning and groping system.
    • Obamacare.
    • Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and the mortgage bubble.
    • Our tax code.
    • Our federal and state budget deficits.
    • Our immigration system.
    • (feel free to add more in the comments)

    We need gravitas, because gravitas has worked so well so far.

    Related Posts:
    We Don’t Need No Stinking Doers
    Should Law Professors Really Be Running The Government?
    Welcome To The Real World, Professor Obama

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    The Solution Is Simple: Dunning-Kruger Effect

    Incompetent individuals tend to overestimate their own level of skill, and do not recognize their true inadequacy. Thay fail to recognize genuine skill in others.

    The unskilled overrate their own ability as above average. The highly-skilled underrate their abilities, often below the self-rating of the unskilled.

    Actual competence may weaken self-confidence, because competent individuals wrongly assume that others are also competent. The incompetent misjudge themselves, whereas the highly competent misjudge others.

    Many intellectuals believe that there is no job (oil company CEO, football coach, running the local post office) that they cannot do as well or better than the person currently in the role, should they ever exert the effort to do so.

    Most academics get points for manipulating an entirely artificial world of symbols and constructs. They think that all complexity in the world is made up, like their own studies, to get points, but none of it is true. Truth is whatever the powerful say it is.

    They never have to create anything other than words, so they never have to confront their lack of real knowledge.

    So, we would be much better off if we elected people who doubted their abilities and insights, so that they would hesitate to interfere in people's lives and take their money. It is a disaster to empower people who regard themselves as the smartest person they have ever met.

    – –
    Bertrand Russell:
    The stupid are cocksure, and the intelligent are full of doubt.
    Most people would rather die than think. In fact, they do so.

    Gravitas, a positive for the left, reminds me of another word used by the right – in the same fashion: pragmatic. Pragmatism (particularly on the right) has done a lot to torpedo our country and – I think – launch a revolt (Tea Party) against it.

    Wasn't it pragmatic of Bush Sr to raise taxes (read my hips); for Bush Jr to start the biggest expansion of the welfare state in a gen (medicare Rx); to drop food from 1 plane while dropping bombs from another; to act uncapitalistic to save capitalism… I could list 100 things that are completely contrary to our fundamentals, yet we (me excluded) still applaud the "non-ideological / pragmatic" man as a hero.

    I would list our energy policy.

    True, it looks like it was crafted by very, very dense people.

    Remember that Obama said one of his chief goals was to "make government cool again." There is nothing cool about the government.

    If we assume that very few of us are qualified to hold the job of President then we have failed ourselves and our country. Perhaps you can't pull the random person off the sidewalk, but the job is not outside the skills of many millions of Americans. The secret is to abide by the Constitution and govern the least.

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