Grappling with the Stupid.

Grappling with the stupid.
Have you ever been confronted one to one with mind-numbing stupidity? With a person who looks sensible enough, ie; is not dressed unusually or extremely confronting and who talks in a calm, considered way..yet is espousing the most ridiculous rubbish you have ever heard..that eye-wincing, head shaking to clear the foolishness.. from what should be a credible conversation?..I’m sure you have..I have too..and I will give you just two examples of recent times.
#1.
An Anti wind-turbine spokesman.
After a lengthy diatribe on the ill effects of both noise and sub-vibrational waves to both humans and animals, there was a pause in the “conversation” for me to digest these amazing “facts”..”Facts” supplied by brochures put out by the “Landscape Guardians”..I was able to gather my thoughts and make some of my own observations. Knowing, as i did , the location of this person’s residence in relation to the distance from the proposed wind-farm, I was curious why he felt threatened.
“So..both the noise AND the vibrations come from the turning of the propeller on the turbine..which is transmitted over land and air to your place..?” They agreed..of course.
“And you live, I could calculate , approximately ten kilometres from the proposed nearest tower?…Yes, they acquiesced, but that made no difference as the vibrations could travel as much as 25klms’ from the source, evidently.
“And so , if my own experience is correct, as I live in this same area, near the same roads and under the same skies..There is the main flight-path from the eastern states to the capital city flying at any time right overhead..there is approximately many thousands of hectares of prime cropping land continually worked with heavy farming machinery throughout the year around you…there are two main roads that carry a regular stream of heavy transport B-Doubles from North / West to the eastern states right past your “front door”..there is wind in the trees, the power wires both next your property and on the main transmission towers right where the wind-towers are proposed, not to mention the many kilometres of fencing wire “singing in the wind”…and through all these other interruptions of background noise and vibrations, you can single out and identify that one particular “wind-turbine problem” that you claim is detrimental to one’s health?”
Now, at this point of any conversation with a person whose convictions are guided by “imported”ideology as against rational self-thought..you meet that moment of confusion that is taking place in their mind..the “veil of confusion” clouds, momentarily, their eyes..you can actually see it..you notice the stumped pause in their otherwise assertive declaiming..there is two ways one goes from such a point, one pauses, thinks on the information and says;
“Well…when you state it like that..there is something in what you say…”
or, as was the case in point:
“Yes..I could.”
And there..is the stupid..not in the denial as much in the lack of intent to even think on the foolish of it.
#2.
The definite knowing of how nodules of limestone calcrete scattered on a road are formed.
This was a neighbour of mine..and the spouse, at their property, on my picking up and turning over a spherical nodule of the calcrete found all over this location.
“Amazing, isn’t it how they are so round “..I turned it over and over.
“Yes..it’s the wheels that do it.” they casually remarked…so casually in fact that I thought they were talking on another subject.
‘These rocks, I mean”..I focused by holding up the item.
“Yes..I know…it’s the wheels that roll the dust around on the road that make them like that”.
I giggled, because I thought they were having me on in an innocent way.
“No” I innocently corrected.”…you can see if you break one open , the layers of built up strata over thousands of years, from the dark centre “pith” outwards.”…then I got the “clouded eyes” look and I realised they were serious…I became aware of my own frown…the spouse chipped in confidently.
“Yes..they come from the wheels spinning them..they break of the bigger pieces of limestone and they get rounded by the tyres spinning over them on the road.”
I looked to one, then the other…the eyes give it away..there is no-where to go from there..you just do one of those shut-mouthed gestures and drop the worthless stone to your feet…but at the same time, judging from past experience of conversations, you just know their opinion is the same opinion as the wider community of “old Family connections”…and you make a note to avoid any further observations on matters geologically interesting.
But there persists, as you drive home, the nagging frustration that here, with these criothans of idiocy, comes the power to vote in the political fools; local, state and federal that have the capacity to ruin your life…themselves, with an intellect like they have..they wouldn’t even know they were falling till they were three steps over the precipice!

“There was a silence again. Big Ian took a breath. “Orinjis,” he said, and then took another breath, “graw i’ Spain.”
He looked at Mr. Smith so emphatically that Mr. Smith nodded.
“Oh, yes,” he said. “They grow in Spain, too, I understand.”
“Orinjis,” Ian repeated, “graw i’ Spain.”
That seemed to settle the question. They all looked in the fire in silence. Saw Cooper sniffed.”…(Eric Knight ; “All Yankees are Liars”)

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