Whether you're a Rhodes scholar with a Ph.D or a Mensa member with an intellectual chip on your shoulder, the status of higher education does not always translate into practical independence -- the same way that a more diminutive educational background does not always translate into cerebral gullibility.
In 2008, I asked a man who was getting angry at the possibility of Barack Obama becoming our president why he hated Obama so badly. He shot back without even thinking...
"He's a foreigner, and I never vote for foreign presidents. They just let anybody come over and run the country into the ground nowadays! I wish all of these damn foreigners would just stay out of this country and stop running for president! I just don"t understand why idiots over here like so much foreign leadership. Can"t they find an American president to vote for?"
The astronomical ignorance displayed by this dolt in the True Conservative Story may possibly be unmatched, but it is most definitely not unparalleled. Despite the fact that the majority of people are not as irrationally misinformed as the lost character from the conservative story on a basic academic level, there are probably just as many who are academically affluent, who will also surrender their rights to the status quo just as easily! Their stories are just not quite as entertaining, because ignorance is much more theatrically engaging.
Watching fools make fools out of themselves will always sell more tickets. It's just human nature, and it's even funnier when the fools are surrounded with a self-contained shroud of intellectual arrogance, despite being armed with an intellectual deficit! There are very few things in the human psyche more entertaining than a deficit that thinks it still has a surplus or a surplus that thinks it still has a deficit!
The Princeton/Rhodes scholars and the people with higher learning are supposed to be beyond such misrepresentations, because the ability to achieve higher learning is often and misguidedly perceived to be intellectually bullet-proof. But that may not always be the case.
Many conservatives, Tea Baggers, and Republicans I frequent on my routes are products of higher learning and higher income -- much higher -- yet I still encounter the same irrational fears and misrepresentations that torment the idiot in the True Conservative Story terrorizing the average Joe the Plumber/Joe Six-pack simpletons. Why is that? Well, in my opinion, the corruption of ignorance is bliss; regardless of your tax bracket or academic bracket.
If Joe the Plumber decides to walk backwards into the wood chipper and Bob the Banker decides to accompany Joe in walking backwards into the wood chipper, who's the bigger fool? The menially educated Joe the Plumber may have the edge, but the higher educated Bob the Banker is only a half-step behind him.
Higher education is great for gathering information; processing information; and distributing information, but it does not and will not always be the greatest tool for specifically choosing specific information and implementing it into one's philosophical livelihood! There are some things in life that have to be humanly learned and not necessarily academically taught.
For example, acceptance into a desired grouping has always been one of the most sought after prizes in human history. I call it the "Validation Factor," because there very well may not be a more coveted acquisition than acceptance. I don't care how many books you read; how many degrees you receive; or how much money you make; without the validation of acceptance, it's as hollow as performing a Grammy winning solo in front of an empty audience. You could have the most beautiful voice in the world, but that voice of beauty might as well be the voice of Darth Vader doing karaoke, if there are no ears willing to receive it and no appreciativeness willing to decorate and support it.
One truly is the loneliest number! I think this is why smart people often find themselves following not-so-smart people and believing in not-so-smart ideologies, because being a part of something that's bigger than yourself makes you feel bigger, as you attempt to identify with something far more recognizable than any individual stance you may have.
As a Republican once said to me, "You have to be special to get into our group. We aren't liberals! We don't just let anyone in! Your ideology has to be handcrafted from the conservative mold!" Now I'm sure that Republicans are not the only ones who do this. I'm not that gullible, but the idea of being selected by the selected has to be intoxicatingly satisfying; otherwise, people wouldn't spend their entire lives trying to make someone else's cut! The Republican was just the only person bold enough to admit to me that the uniqueness of his acceptance into the conservative fold actually meant more to him than the overall conservative point of view.