I saw that pic of Al Sharpton and his new squeeze today on Drudge. Gotta say, I’m impressed.
I mean, here’s a guy who looked like this when he was 29. He was a better candidate for the dead pool than the dating pool. By any measure, the man’s been hugely successful. But at what?
As far as I can tell, the man’s basic skill set consists of an uncanny ability to get out in front of a crowd, to whip up that crowd with remarkably poor rhetoric, and to avoid being held accountable for the subsequent, frequently substantial, damage resulting from his actions.
This can’t just be a run of incredibly good luck. No, Sharpton seems to have identified–or stumbled upon–a previously unmet demand in the marketplace: a demand for ignorance. The thoroughly depressing aftermath of the Zimmerman verdict demonstrates that that many of our fellow citizens seem positively eager to hold strong views fueled by massively mangled facts. This is as true when the subject is economic policy as it is when the topic is criminal justice. When the truth is readily available at low cost and people still prefer to be wrong, then it’s got to be concluded that they prefer to be wrong. In econojargon, they demand it. And Sharpton supplies it the way Nike provides shoes.
So, in the spirit of reconciliation, I salute Al Sharpton as a canny entrepreneur with apparently excellent taste in female companionship. What Bill Gates did for personal computing, Al has done for ignorance.