Not even a decade has passed since the movie “Idiocracy” came out, and I’m already beginning to see signs of the future it predicted.
You might have seen the film. It pops up every so often on cable TV.
It tries to show how a society that persistently holds intelligence in contempt inevitably breeds a mindless population.
In the film, a mild mannered Army librarian is the subject of a suspended-animation experiment that goes awry. He wakes up in the year 2505 and finds the English language has deteriorated into “a hybrid of hillbilly, valley girl, inner-city slang and various grunts.” Degenerate morons occupy this futuristic world and politics has become a glitzy reality show featuring rock-star ignoramuses (“President Camacho” shown in top photo).
I thought of that movie as I heard Donald Trump (lower photo) dismiss tonight’s Democratic debate in a recent TV interview. Here’s his take on the subject:
I think people are going to turn it on for a couple of minutes and then fall asleep.
The sad truth is that Trump may be right. Few viewers have the attention span for Hillary Clinton’s intricate theses or the spirit for Bernie Sanders’ fire-breathing idealism. As for Martin O’Malley, Lincoln Chafee and Jim Webb, whoever heard of them? There’s no star power there.
I doubt there will be much drama in tonight’s debate. The candidates basically agree on nearly everything important, and I imagine they are all too well brought up to insult one another. They differ on the fine points of how to implement their policies, of course. And they will disagree – politely I expect – on who is best equipped to realize their goals.
But I don’t see any real controversy erupting. And that’s what today’s TV viewers tune in for.
Of course, there’s always the possibility that some smart PR type will devise a made-for-TV confrontation. Already the mindless media are trying to whip up interest in Hillary’s email “scandal.” But how juicy is that? So she used her own computer for official correspondence. So what?
I don’t care, and I doubt that you care.
I hope the people planning tonight’s debate resist the temptation to serve up contrived “scandals” and stick to the issues.
What I want to know is how the candidates would make my life better if they were elected. How they would make America – and the world – better.
As for the millions of viewers around the world, I imagine they’re hoping for something more substantial than an email “scandal.” As a world power, America’s politics affects their lives, too.
Meanwhile, in today’s budding idiocracy, Donald Trump says he will be tweeting live during the debate. Tweeting.
That’s how our leaders communicate with us these days. They tweet. Even the President tweets.
I never got the hang of the tweeting thing. I couldn’t even figure out how to join Twitter. But I believe you are limited to just so many characters and the tweeters have created a short-hand language to deal with the restriction.
Surely and sadly, that shows you we’re already in a rock-culture society, one that’s sliding inexorably into idiocracy.