Thursday, March 29, 2007
The Illusion of expertise
This is a remarkable clip, truly one of the most bizarre youtube videos that has ever been. It's Karl Rove first proclaiming (on CSPAN2, no less) that he enjoys "Biting the heads of small animals" and "Stamp Collecting" (I hope at least one of those is a joke, but seriously- what kind of joke is that?) And then the guys from Who's Line is it Anyway do a song about it and Karl Rove fucking jumps around and dances and shouts "I'm MC Rove." This is just jaw dropping- if you've seen the clip without the short interview section watch the one I linked above- also not to be missed.
It made me think of one of scariest and most important truths I came to realize around the time I entered the workforce: the people in positions of authority are often weirdos and screw-ups. Not more than the rest of us, maybe, but not really any less either. Maybe I knew this before on some level, but I don't think I ever really understood that (for instance) the doctor who reviews my X-rays probably searches for Internet Porn. Or that your youngish High School teacher is dropping X that Friday, and so on.
Okay big whoop right- I saw the Doc wash his hands and teachers have a right to do what they want, but that's not even the half of it. The Judge who's deciding whether you should have custody of your child just caught her husband with the cleaning guy and you look like him. Okay, these aren't the best examples, I know. The biggest shock is that once I met School Teachers, Corporate Controllers, presidents of Banks, and Registered Nurses it suddenly seemed shocking to me that I always used to imagine them as omniscient authority figures who could do no wrong, and didn't have bad days which colored their judgment, or weren't searching the next hospital bed for extra Dilaudid that a dying old man forgot to take.
I'm gonna wrap this up, because I'm rambling but here's what I'm getting at: I used to always assume that no matter how fucked up the world was, there were some rational men behind the curtain who were doing everything to make it right. Not because they were good people but because it's in nobody's real interest to have a nuclear holocaust or a Robocop style- Global Warming/Ozone meltdown. But once you look into it, and you get it, the world just doesn't work like that. It's often run by fucked up people who joke about killing small animals (by biting their heads off, no less) on national TV, and care more about short-term profit interests than averting Nuclear Holocaust.
If you're reading this at work on Firefox you should consider downloading this add-on, which ingeniously creates a hotkey that kills your internet applications and brings up a google search "Increasing Workplace Productivity." Genius.
Posted by Luke Rhinehart at 1:06 PM