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I'M A LIBERAL ELITIST!

by Merl Moore (MerlMoore@mail.com)

 “The greatest obstacle to knowledge is not ignorance, it is the illusion of knowledge.” Anonymous


Okay, okay, okay, I confess! I'M A LIBERAL ELITIST! But in my defense and in fairness it's not my fault and I can't help it! My fate was predetermined and not by me! When the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor – see! It's the Japanese's fault – though I wasn't to be born for almost another 20 years, the die was cast and my fate sealed! Right after the attack my Mom's family (very, very, very poor family, by the way) fled the islands for the mainland and I ended up born in San Francisco instead of in abject poverty.  


In the islands my family actually lived in a shack with a dirt-floor and my Mom didn't have shoes until she was a teen. The Hawaiian Islands in 1941 were pretty much the “Appalachia of the Pacific” and certainly no tourist destination as it is today. If the Japanese Imperial Army (I guess in this case, Imperial Air force & Navy) hadn't attacked U.S. territory in the Pacific on that “day that will live in infamy,” my Mom probably never would have come to California and met my Dad and that'd be that! I wouldn't even be here at all.  


Anybody who knows anything knows that being a Native San Franciscan automatically makes you an elitist prick! It's not my fault! It's in the water or something (and BTW, we have really, really great water right out of the tap here in The City!)!  


See right there!?! The City! Not “a city” or “this city,” no, “The City!” Like San Francisco is the only City on Planet Earth worthy of the title! You can't blame me! From birth I was raised to be an ELITIST! There were no other options for me!


Having three older, “Hippie,” brothers and no sisters and being raised in The City (see, there I did it again!) in the 60's and 70's (i.e.: “Summer of Love,” weekly Anti-Vietnam War protests, free impromptu Jefferson Airplane concerts in the Park, etc.) – and raised literally ½ a block from Golden Gate Park! – all conspired to completely predetermine entirely my liberal proclivities from birth. Can anyone honestly blame me!?! (NOTE: While an admitted “elitist” (obviously) that does not mean I am a defender of the Democratic Party's DLC-Clinton “Establishment-Corporatist” status quo, quite the contrary. Ever true to my San Francisco Roots, I am, in fact, a Bernie Sanders/Elizabeth Warren/Robert Reich Democrat.)  


So, simply put and at no fault of my own: I was born and bred to be a liberal elitist!  


Because of this lifelong predisposition, to this day I spend an inordinate amount of my free-time (literally ALL of my free-time) reading about politics and policy, articles in magazines, newspapers and on-line that cover the entire political spectrum – not because I have to but because I actually enjoy it! Now how f—ked-up is that? (Did I mention that I've earned 2 college degrees?)  


Which brings me to “You're no better than me!” This is the inferiority-complex dirge we on the left hear constantly from people on the right, Southerners and Trump-supporters (especially of late), to which I respond unequivocally and enthusiastically: “You're Damn Right, Brother! (or “Sister,” as the case may be.) As a person no one is better than anyone else and as a person I am certainly no better than you or anyone else! Period.”  


That said, if my mechanic tells me that I'm low and I need to put oil in my car or I'm going to throw a rod and blow-up my engine, I don't say, “You're no better than me!” and drive off without putting any oil in the car simply because I don't feel like buying any oil. If my doctor tells me that I need my appendix removed or I'm going to die, I don't say, “You're no better than me!” and walk out of the hospital because I don't like the idea of having my appendix removed (which, by the way, I don't).  


The fact is, both my mechanic and my doctor are truly no better than I as people but my mechanic is a better mechanic than I and my doctor is a better doctor than I. This FACT does not make me feel inferior as a human-being to either.  


I've been a carpenter for over 40 years as well and while there are plenty of carpenters better than me (believe me), if you've never swung a hammer or hung rock or loaded a roof or framed a house, I'm a better carpenter than you too. It doesn't make you less of a person or a lesser person; it just makes you less of a carpenter, that's all, and if I give you advice related to carpentry, at no point in the conversation is “You're no better than me!” the correct response from you.  


Which brings us to policy and politics. As I stated, I digest everything and if all you read/watch/listen to is Rush Limbaugh, FOX News or INFOWars.com – or, conversely, Redacted Tonight and The Young Turks or read only Daily KOS – and nothing else, than the answer is yes, I am better then you in the exact same way that my mechanic and my doctor are better than me. When it comes to policy and politics, I am better than you. I know more than you, I understand more than you about a broader spectrum of political thought than you. That doesn't make me a better person, just better informed regarding politics.  


And yet somehow everybody (especially on the right) thinks they know all there is to know about politics because they listen to a single radio-show, watch a single TV-station, or read a single-publication. Well, “Guess What” Part Two, cats & kittens? If all your info comes from pretty much a single source with a single point of view, you have only a single frame of reference and basically know nothing (http://www.forbes.com/sites/quora/2016/07/21/a-rigorous-scientific-look-into-the-fox-news-effect/#5c3a5bcf5f90).  


Additionally, if you even entertain the idea of “Alternative Facts” being anything other than lies or take any of the other multitude of falsehoods coming out of Trump's White House (i.e.: “...between 3 million and 5 million undocumented immigrants illegally voted ...” www.courant.com/...) as anything other than falsehoods, then, yes, in this case too, in this way, I am better than you. If that makes me an elitist, so be it.


If you don't like that news than turn off Rush and FOX and INFOWars.com for a bit and seek out other sources for your information. At the end of the day you may still be on the political-right but at least you won't be a political ignoramus.


NOTE: If you can look at the photographs of Obama's vs. Trump's inaugurations side-by-side (www.reuters.com/...) and believe they're equal or, even worse, that Trump's audience is larger, don't bother turning off Rush/FOX/INFOWars. You're way too far gone to be helped or for it to even matter.