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Date Posted: 15:13:40 04/08/17 Sat
Author: Dave Shickel
Subject: Re: Ignorance and Power
In reply to: Denny 's message, "Re: Ignorance and Power" on 13:57:02 04/01/17 Sat

Denny,
I agree with the distinction you make between the meanings of the words ignorance and stupidity. Also agree that many people use them interchangeably (and incorrectly). I wonder, however, if an otherwise intelligent and powerful person chooses to frequently inform himself with demonstrably false information from questionable sources (perhaps we could call this information "alternative facts"), is that person still intelligent or is he trending toward the realm of the stupid? I also worry whether that powerful person, so informed, will contribute to the greater good of our nation. Sometimes this keeps me awake at night.
Thank you for the recommendation to revisit "Profiles in Courage." It has been many years since I first read it and I checked it out from our local library (yes, the Lock Haven library had it in the stacks) so I could re-read it. Kennedy's observations in the section titled "Courage and Politics" remain strikingly valid today. I wonder what he would think, were he still alive, about SuperPACs, foreign meddling in our elections, internet trolls, extreme factions in Congress. What would he have said about the Republican refusal to even give Merrick Garland a hearing in the Judiciary Committee? It seems to me that there are few in the Senate today in either party who would warrant a chapter in Kennedy's book.

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