Milan Vodicka: Morons and oxymorons
What times we are living in! Climate change, pandemic! Social media! What else is new?
Since this commentary is a part of social discourse, it seems appropriate to address “discourse” as a topic. “Discourse is a fancy way to rely on description, narration, exposition and argumentation,” according to some authority on the internet. Unquestionably, yes, those aspects are present, in one form or another, just about everywhere. Especially, in the news.
OK, “exposition” — leading “argumentation.” How about exposing moronic and oxymoronic argumentation? An inquiry into these terms and their usage? Would this be beyond personal opinions? Impersonal and objective argument? Is there stupidity — lack of intelligence — around and abound?
Well, “moron” is actually a term from psychology and psychiatry, meaning “a stupid person.” It may be also expressed as “cretan” or “ debile.” This seems to be leaving out “idiot” and “imbecile,” among other designations too numerous to list.
A scale from stupidity to smartness is conventionally measured by the IQ (Intelligence Quotient) scale. So, to be in line with the IQ accuracy, an idiot has an IQ of 0 to 25, an imbecile 26 to 50, and a moron 51 to 70 (see Wikipedia). For comparison, the average IQ is 90 to 109.
Moronic argumentation can manifest itself as “speech or policies where the contradictory terms appear in conjunction.” This is called an oxymoron.
Let us look at some recent oxymorons. Here is (pandemic times) Exhibit 1: “We are not against masks, we are against mandates to wear masks.” The oxymoronic solution is obvious — we shall mandate that no mandates to wear a mask can be established. We are against mandates by a mandate.
Exhibit 2: Anti-vaxxers and anti-maskers. “Nobody can limit my personal freedom!” Obviously, and all the while, this personal freedom is taking away the freedom of otherst o the point of them potentially living or not. Also, on the moronic scale, forgetting that the personal freedom to smoke is regulated by law. One cannot smoke whenever and wherever he or she wants. This is simply because inhaling second-hand smoke is a hazard and health danger to others. There is no difference with spreading and inhaling the virus.
Exhibit 3: “Yes, but masks do not work!” I wrote about the probabilistic worldview and what we call “the truth” in the past. In context of current times, I think it is useful to invoke the convergence concept of truth. This concept simply declares that society considers the truth that which the majority believes.
In the distant past, the majority believed that the Earth was flat. That was the truth of that time. Not so today. Why? Preponderance (not certainty) of evidence. The other description might be the scientific evidence. There exists a Flat Earth Society today — you can research it on the internet. Just like anti-masking or anti-vaccination proponents, its supporters spun theories based on their beliefs, as contrasted to scientific evidence. Remember, scientific evidence must be measurable, repeatable and verifiable.
For the convergence truth to emerge and take hold, what must take place is a proper narrative. This is fertile ground for masters of deception. So welcome to Exhibit 4: The new Texas anti-abortion law. Here comes the oxymoron: In order to preserve law and order, anyone and everyone can interpret, execute and enforce this interpretation. Anyone (Flat Earthers welcome), rather than state officials, can sue abortion providers or the person or persons involved in providing abortion assistance. The oxymoron is that this Texas law, while ostensibly promoting law and order, is actually destroying it.
Such “law and order” was in action in my native Czechoslovakia under the Communist rule. Just about any community, formal or informal, was infested by party fiduciaries. They could spy on and, via the state legal apparatus, accuse anyone of illegal activities, those defined by the state (meaning by the Communist Party). Freedom, indeed.
The Texas implementation of the law in essence demolishes women’s rights proclaimed by the Roe v. Wade ruling nearly half a century ago without ever mentioning it. It bans abortions after six weeks of pregnancy, before many women even know they are pregnant. Does this represent the legal embodiment of the convergent truth regarding abortions?
To sum up, by Woke Q: “Let the world continue to be rife with ignorants and they’ll kill themselves out as well.”
I recommend to be clear eyed about what is transpiring. About causes and conditions. It is beneficial to life to understand and act accordingly.
Milan Vodicka has lived in Nevada County since 1978.
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