Do you want to know the real reason Barack Obama is going to win the 2012 election? The big, grinning hunk of overwhelming evidence that has little to do with the not-very-terrific job he's doing and not nearly enough to do with the fact that the man has actually accomplished quite a lot, despite being savaged and hobbled and compromised at nearly every turn?
The reason, as most comparable explanations are, is sort of awesome in its pureform power. The most interesting part is that it has almost nothing to do with Obama at all and everything to do with the fact that his opponents are, largely and comfortably, insane.
What, too harsh? Too mean? Not even close, honeybomb.
Let me back up for a second. Because here I am, reading over this swell little science item that whipped through the newswires recently, all about how some paleoecologists just discovered some stunning prehistoric feathers locked in a tiny hunk of amber they calculate to be about, oh, 70 million years old.
It's a fascinating little finding, really, one of thousands like it happening all the time in the science world; it tells of life long past, how protofeathers later evolved into actual feathers, how flight first came to be. Wonderful.
Then it strikes me. There was that magic word, "evolved." Oh my sweet goddess, to many Americans, these scientists are totally lying. They are part of some mass liberal conspiracy begun hundreds if not thousands of years ago, specifically designed to ruin homeschooled kids' minds and taint the blood of virgins and demean angry Almighty God.
Is it not true? Is this not the belief of many of the nation's current crop of top GOP presidential candidates? You bet it is.
See Rick Perry over there? He doesn't really believe in evolution. Says "It's a theory that's out there" which "has some gaps in it," which is not even remotely true, but he's been far too busy killing inmates in his home state and rallying evangelical homophobes to, you know, care much for book learnin'.
Perry "knows" only one fact. We came from God. That's it. He's just not really sure what happened next. Probably some combination of confused monkeys and flying iguanas and, like, oil or something. Poor Rick. The world must be so weird.
Over there, it's Michele "Crazy Eyes" Bachmann, who, aside from being a grade-A nutball conspiracy theorist of terrifically paranoid dimensions, is an avowed creationist, believing all existence began less than 10,000 years ago, during which man and dinosaurs co-existed, prehistoric cave paintings never happened and the planets are nothing but God's little sack of marbles.
Bachmann believes in teaching creationism in schools. She says we should "put all the science on the table and let kids decide," as if creationism has the slightest whiff of fact behind it, as if there was some sort of valid debate happening anywhere but in her own madly short-circuited brain, as if kids were somehow savvier than, say, Richard Dawkins. Isn't she adorable? Keep her away from your pets.
Mitt Romney! He's not so bad, right? Romney actually believes evolution is fact, more or less. He believes God created everything and then, well, then Joseph Smith found it all etched on some shiny plates under a rock one day while out evading his seventeen petulant wives. Yes! Who needs creationism when you've got a whole religion to "translate" on a whim?)
Awesome. Let's sum up!...
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Mark Morford is the author of The Daring Spectacle: Adventures in Deviant Journalism, a mega-collection of his finest columns for the San Francisco Chronicle and SFGate. He recently wondered who in your life you find perfectly toxic, cheered that the gay agenda will see you now, and that you seem to enjoy always walking in circles. Join him on Facebook, or email him. Not to mention...
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