I’ve spent a lot of time in school. That doesn’t mean that I’m smart, but it means people tried to teach me things for many years. Unfortunately for me, some of that education stuck. Now, you may think, “But Thunderchunk, isn’t it good to be smart?” The answer, I’m afraid, is no, as I shall explain below. Do your best not to actually learn anything from it, for your own good.
The first really worthwhile trait of stupidity is its tendency to make the world strange and wonderful. You and I might watch decoded digital signals on our TVs, but the truly ignorant get live performances from tiny little people. For smart people, the Internet is a treacherous obstacle course of misinformation and biased opinions. While an invaluable tool, any information attained there must be carefully considered before it can be truly believed. For the profoundly dim, the net is a magical place that actually makes things true! Want to believe that dinosaurs never died out, they merely turned invisible and moved to Australia? It turns out it’s true! xoxoxoCoNsPiRaZioxoxox said so, OMG! Idiots live in an exciting place where mysteries and cover-ups are everywhere, ham comes from cows, and the nuclear arms race was won by a giant radioactive right arm.
Another useful aspect of ignorance is low expectation. I can’t remember the last time I was told I did a good job. That’s because I’ve got a freaking pair of degrees! People expect me to build rocket ships and cure diseases. The merely difficult should thus be simplicity itself, not a cause for praise. “What’s that? You’ve found a way to do in three seconds what four of your bosses have been taking hours a day to do? And?…” Meanwhile, there are knuckleheads out there getting plaques for going a whole year without slicing their fingers off. An engineer could invent a new plastic that revolutionizes industry all he’d get is a paycheck. An inept delivery driver can go from 15 destroyed packages in a week to 10 and he’d get a “Most Improved Employee” award. For the thick, there is nowhere to go but up. Not only that, but since morons tend to have no useful skills, no one asks them for favors. What’s that? You work with computers? Prepare to spend at least half of every family get together running an antivirus. God help you if you are a contractor or a plumber. If you are stupid enough, though, people will be happy just to get you in and out of the house without the cat going on fire again.
Last on the list is the fact that knowledge invariably decreases joy. (A lesser man might have said “Ignorance is bliss,” but if you are going to write an article complaining about intelligence, you are morally obligated to be excessively wordy, superfluously verbose, abundantly loquacious, and exhibit an indisputably Brobdingnagian lexicon. Them’s the rules.) What I mean by that is that there simply isn’t enough happy info out there to offset the bad stuff. Ever hear of the brown recluse spider? Ever see what happens to you if it bites you? If the answer is no, savor the ignorance. Pick a subject and I guarantee you can educate yourself into depression in three days, tops. Your favorite actor is a jerk in real life, that delicious snack food is dissolving your intestines as we speak, and every day the asteroid we can’t see gets just a little closer to wiping us out. Stupid people, on the other hand, think that the popularity in high school lasts forever, that nice man from Nigeria will be sending a check any day now, and that elevator will come faster if you just pound that button a few times. You simply don’t know how many problems that you have, and the ones you do know about, you don’t know how hard they are to solve. Heck, you might even have the solutions! If there are so many people unemployed, they should all get jobs at the unemployment office! If the banks need money, they should just get loans from each other. Dumb people don’t need light at the end of the tunnel because they don’t even realize that they are [I]in[/I] a tunnel.
Don’t get me wrong. There are plenty of things that intelligence brings to the party – higher paying jobs, interesting conversation, a drastically reduced risk of choking to death on your shoelaces – but I think stupidity has the edge. I might be entertained by an illusionist’s skill, but dummies are amazed with their [I]magic powers[/I]. I may be able to program my own DVR, but dopes don’t have to program other people’s DVRs. I may know that the caps of ball point pens are indigestible bacterial breeding grounds, but idiots only know that they are delicious. You people out there might feel differently than I, and that’s fine, but do this little experiment and see if it changes your mind. Go to a NASCAR event, hunt down the most beer soaked, loud mouthed, sun burnt yahoos you can, and watch their faces during a crash. When was the last time you were that happy?