10 Reasons you are surrounded by idiots.
1. Cultural Isolation.
Great leaps in human progress have often come from the meeting of minds. The Crusades brought Europe out of the dark ages. Christianity would have never evolved out of Judaism were it not for the cultural diffusion the Romans brought to the Middle East. The founding fathers of America based many of their political ideas on what they learned from thinkers all over Europe as well as the Native Americans.
The printing press made the ideas cheaper and easier to transport, and the internet has sped up the growth of human knowledge exponentially, but throughout history our minds have been cut off from each other’s by physical, linguistic and political barriers… and they still are. If we had free energy, one language and no political barriers our knowledge would explode like an algae bloom in the ocean… but the people with the power to remove these stumbling blocks from our path fear change. So despite the globalization that is shrinking the world and bringing humanity together, all of our minds are still limited by the relative cultural isolation that remains.
The greater the disparity between the rich and poor becomes the less wealth there is for the poor to fulfill their base needs/desires, much less achieve self-actualization. The harder and longer the poor are forced to work, the less time, energy, opportunity and motivation they have to turn their minds towards self-actualization and learning for the sake of learning.
Throughout history the gap between the rich and poor has stretched and contracted in cycles, but the contractions have been few and far between. If human nature wasn’t to be so greedy and the distribution of wealth had been more equitable all along, then the human race would have progressed at an exponentially faster rate, but since the vast majority of humanity has been poor and stressed throughout history we’re suffering the compounded consequences of generations of ignorance. Even today most people are still too stressed over their base needs/desires to turn their attention to becoming more complete people.
3. Peer Pressure.
Humans don’t like it when people act differently than them. Our brains are designed to fear what they don’t know. It was a useful survival instinct for cavemen, but in modern society it mostly causes us to bully, insult, ostracize and find other ways to punish each other for being different. One of the big reasons we’re all so dumb is because we’ve beat the courage and inspiration out of each other.
Another consequence of fearing the unknown is that progress is by definition, deviant, which means humans tend to reject improving the status quo. History is full of examples of heroes who died trying to pull their fellow man out of the dark age, and humanity is still being dragged towards enlightenment kicking and screaming.
4. Media caters to the lowest common denominator.
Mass media isn’t designed to enlighten its viewers. It’s designed to cater to its viewers most base desires: fortune, glory, excitement, sex, drama, and shiny things. Mass media is puerile brain candy. If you always eat brain candy, and you never eat brain food, your brain regresses. The longer you stay in Stupid Land, the more your accept and defend stupid as reality.
5. Government doesn’t make education a priority.
The world wouldn’t be so dumb if our governments devoted more resources to education than war. If we’d spent our entire war budget on education we could end the need for most of the world’s wars and prisons. Our leaders aren’t doing that though, because it’s very difficult to exploit and manipulate highly educated people who are capable of solving all the world’s problems. The rich need the poor to stay poor, desperate and ignorant in order to exploit them. So they lobby our leaders to under-fund schools and over-fund the prison industry.
6. Academic philosophy has failed humanity.
Ideally, school is supposed to teach students to be curious, to seek knowledge on their own, to ask questions and seek answers. Unfortunately, academia has suffered the same fate as any large, hierarchical bureaucracy that controls vast amounts of wealth and power. It has come to defend the status quo and ridicule, ostracize and punish deviant thinkers.
Universities rarely teach people to think for themselves. More often than not they teach students to think what their professors or the authors of their text books think. There are some good academic philosophy classes out there, but standardized tests don’t measure original thought. They measure memorization. So most curricula are designed to challenge students to study old thoughts and regurgitate them, which makes students experts at bragging about how much they know about the history of philosophy without doing much original or practical problem solving of their own.
7. Religion has failed humanity.
There may be some force somewhere in the universe that fits some definition of the word God. There’s some evidence to suggest that might be possible, but there are mountains of evidence that all the religions humans have invented are mythologies. While these belief systems may make some good points and give people hope, there are catastrophic consequences to a single person, let alone entire world, of people basing their real world decisions on a mythology-based understanding of reality.
History is full of examples of people hurting each other and discouraging progress in the name of religion. These aren’t anomalies. That’s what happens when you base your understanding of reality on mythology. That’s still happening, and it’s going to keep happening as long as people keep believing in mythology.
8. Our leaders don’t know what they’re doing, and they lie about it.
Society is so lost we don’t even know we’re lost. This is true for the lowest street sweeper all the way up to the highest political leader. We have no idea what we’re doing, and we’re just guessing while putting on enough airs to make it look like we have it together.
In this kind of world it’s natural to look to leaders for guidance, which wouldn’t be such a bad thing except that our leaders are just as blind as the rest of us. The only difference between us and them is that they’re better at lying. This causes two problems. First, when we attempt to emulate our leaders we end up emulating fools. The second problem is that our leaders are leading us in circles as our world becomes overpopulated and better armed.
9. Parents don’t know what they’re doing, and they lie about it.
Nobody knows the meaning of life, and psychologists are still figuring out how what makes a mentally healthy human being. Most K-12 schools don’t teach philosophy, and I’ve never heard of one that teaches child psychology. Parents are mostly making up their parenting skills as they go along, but they still demand respect and obedience from the younger generation. So children are raised to look up to and emulate people who are doing their best at faking it until they make it. This haphazard approach to raising children into adults yields haphazard results.
10. Evolution has designed us to be stupid.
All of these problems aren’t accidents or anomalies. They’re all inevitabilities considering how evolution has designed us. As surely as evolution gave us hands, feet, eyes, ears and noses to help us survive it also gave us pain, pleasure, hunger, fear, love, greed and all the other emotions and base desires that steer us away from logical accountability. It also put shortcuts into our brains like cognitive dissonance, cognitive bias, schemas, trust for authority, fear of change, the fundamental attribution error and a slew of other mental processes that reduce our need to think about what we’re doing and encourages us to sleepwalk through life on autopilot.
The truth is ugly, but we have to face this demon in order to fulfill our potential. We were born to be stupid, and make no mistake, we are stupid. I don’t say this because I’m better than you. I’m no better than you. I’m stupid too. The big difference between me and the gangstas, rednecks, preps and religious fanatics that infuriate me day in and day out is that I’m afraid and ashamed of my stupidity whereas they celebrate theirs.
How terrified are you of your stupidity? Because the greater your terror is the more motivated you’ll be to do everything in your power to get unstupid. The more confident or even resigned with who you are the less critical of your own stupidity you’ll be and the more you’ll wallow in your own stupidity, infuriate the intelligent people around you (who you will have ignorantly mistaken for being stupid) and waste your life and lower humanity’s potential.
As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words but to live by them.
John F. Kennedy
Mature people avoid drama. They know their time is precious and they don’t want to waste it on unimportant things.
An unemployed man is desperate to support his family of a wife and three kids. He applies for a janitor’s job at a large firm and easily passes an aptitude test.
The human resources manager tells him, “You will be hired at minimum wage of $7.35 an hour. Let me have your e-mail address so that we can get you in the loop. Our system will automatically e-mail you all the forms and advise you when to start and where to report on your first day.”
Taken aback, the man protests that he is poor and has neither a computer nor an e-mail address.
To this the manager replies, “You must understand that to a company like ours that means that you virtually do not exist. Without an e-mail address you can hardly expect to be employed by a high-tech firm. Good day.”
Stunned, the man leaves. Not knowing where to turn and having $10 in his wallet, he walks past a farmers’ market and sees a stand selling 25 lb. crates of beautiful red tomatoes. He buys a crate, carries it to a busy corner and displays the tomatoes. In less than 2 hours he sells all the tomatoes and makes 100% profit.
Repeating the process several times more that day, he ends up with almost $100 and arrives home that night with several bags of groceries for his family. During the night he decides to repeat the tomato business the next day. By the end of the week he is getting up early every day and working into the night. He multiplies his profits quickly.
Early in the second week he acquires a cart to transport several boxes of tomatoes at a time, but before a month is up he sells the cart to buy a broken-down pickup truck.
At the end of a year, he owns three old trucks. His two sons have left their neighbourhood gangs to help him with the tomato business, his wife is buying the tomatoes, and his daughter is taking night courses at the community college so she can keep books for him.
By the end of the second year he has a dozen very nice used trucks and employs fifteen previously unemployed people, all selling tomatoes. He continues to work hard.
Time passes and at the end of the fifth year he owns a fleet of nice trucks and a warehouse that his wife supervises, plus two tomato farms that the boys manage. The tomato company’s payroll has put hundreds of homeless and jobless people to work. His daughter reports that the business grossed over one million dollars.
Planning for the future, he decides to buy some life insurance. Consulting with an insurance adviser, he picks an insurance plan to fit his new circumstances.
Then the adviser asks him for his e-mail address in order to send the final documents electronically. When the man replies that he doesn’t have time to mess with a computer and has no e-mail address, the insurance man is stunned, “What, you don’t have e-mail? No computer? No Internet? Just think where you would be today if you’d had all of that five years ago!”
“Ha!” snorts the man. “If I’d had e-mail five years ago I would be sweeping floors at Microsoft and making $7.35 an hour.”
During a robbery in Guangzhou, China, the bank robber shouted to everyone in the bank: “Don’t move. The money belongs to the State. Your life belongs to you.”
Everyone in the bank laid down quietly. This is called “Mind Changing Concept” Changing the conventional way of thinking.
When a lady lay on the table provocatively, the robber shouted at her: “Please be civilized! This is a robbery and not a rape!”
This is called “Being Professional” Focus only on what you are trained to do!
When the bank robbers returned home, the younger robber (MBA-trained) told the older robber (who has only completed Year 6 in primary school): “Big brother, let’s count how much we got.”
The older robber rebutted and said: “You are very stupid. There is so much money it will take us a long time to count. Tonight, the TV news will tell us how much we robbed from the bank!”
This is called “Experience.” Nowadays, experience is more important than paper qualifications!
After the robbers had left, the bank manager told the bank supervisor to call the police quickly. But the supervisor said to him: “Wait! Let us take out $10 million from the bank for ourselves and add it to the $70 million that we have previously embezzled from the bank”.
This is called “Swim with the tide.” Converting an unfavorable situation to your advantage!
The supervisor says: “It will be good if there is a robbery every month.”
This is called “Killing Boredom.” Personal Happiness is more important than your job.
The next day, the TV news reported that $100 million was taken from the bank. The robbers counted and counted and counted, but they could only count $20 million. The robbers were very angry and complained: “We risked our lives and only took $20 million. The bank manager took $80 million with a snap of his fingers. It looks like it is better to be educated than to be a thief!”
This is called “Knowledge is worth as much as gold!”
The bank manager was smiling and happy because his losses in the share market are now covered by this robbery.
This is called “Seizing the opportunity.” Daring to take risks!
So who are the real robbers here?
(Yeah; the “Founding Fathers” of their so-called great nation; true heroes of the US of A………..)