Vox Populi Lacerta

lizard brain 1

Toute nation a le gouvernement qu’elle mérite. 

 –Joseph de Maistre, letter of August 15, 1811

If what Monsieur de Maistre says is true, Every country has the government it deserves, one has to wonder just what kind of country we’ll be living in should the GOP succeed in taking over the government next year.

If the brainstems who have comprised the audience of the 22 GOP presidential debates thus far are any indication, we will have devolved to the point where racism, fear, torture, and sociopathy are again the order of the day.

Howard Feinman, in his post yesterday before last night’s debate in North Charleston, South Carolina, puts the spotlight where it belongs:

Candidates’ attacks, gaffes and memory lapses have dominated coverage of the 21 Republican debates so far, but reporters are covering the wrong people. The real story isn’t on the stage; it’s in the audience.

Howard reprises some of their greatest hits:

– Cheering Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s embrace of the death penalty.

– Cheering the idea that an uninsured man should be left to die.

– Booing Perry’s relatively moderate immigration stance.

– Booing when a gay soldier asks a question about gay rights.

– Cheering for waterboarding and torture.

– Giving Gingrich a standing ovation for rejecting moderator Juan Williams’ comments on race.

In a letter to Charlemagne in 798, Alcuin wrote:

Nec audiendi qui solent dicere, Vox populi, vox Dei, quum tumultuositas vulgi semper insaniae proxima sit.

And those people should not be listened to who keep saying the voice of the people is the voice of God, since the riotousness of the crowd is always very close to madness.

The more things change the more they stay the same.

Miss South Carolina Teen USA explains why Americans are so clueless about the rest of the world


h/t Digby

Image by Sandra Yagi


  1. Propagandee Propagandee

    Yo Michael:

    Adler sounds like an idiot chicken hawk who doesn’t reflect the latest Israeli govt’s assessment of Iran.

    From Juan Cole’s blog yesterday:

    As Gen. Martin Dempsey, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, arrived in Israel Thursday, the left-leaning Haaretz newspaper dropped its own atomic bombshell.

    Israeli intelligence agencies have worked up an intelligence assessment that Iran has not yet decided whether to begin a military program to construct a nuclear warhead. Put in other words, Mossad believes that there is no current Iranian nuclear weapons program. Haaretz writes:

    “The intelligence assessment Israeli officials will present later this week to Dempsey indicates that Iran has not yet decided whether to make a nuclear bomb. The Israeli view is that while Iran continues to improve its nuclear capabilities, it has not yet decided whether to translate these capabilities into a nuclear weapon – or, more specifically, a nuclear warhead mounted atop a missile. Nor is it clear when Iran might make such a decision.”

    This is the same conclusion to which the 16 US intelligence agencies have come in 2007 and 2010. It is also consistent with what the Iranian government itself says, which is that the Iranian nuclear enrichment program is a civilian one and that Iran is not trying to construct a nuclear weapon. Likewise, the International Atomic Energy Agency, which continues to inspect Iranian nuclear facilities, has repeatedly and consistently stated that no nuclear material has been diverted from the civilian program.

    Haaretz says that Israeli Minister of Defense Ehud Barak gave an interview with the Army radio, in which he come to another surprising conclusion. Asked if Israel plans a military strike on the Iranian nuclear facilities in Natanz near Isfahan, Barak replied:

    “We haven’t made any decision to do this . . . This entire thing is very far off.”

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