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Roxanne Reviews "Profiles in Ignorance"

I broke my abstinence of plugging my ears and covering my eyes to political news and took in Andy Borowitz’s (former Harvard Lampoon president and current New Yorker contributor) Profiles in Ignorance: How America’s Politicians Got Dumb and Dumber. Borowitz’s comically wry and super documented devolution of politicians lured me into both laughing and feeling the urge to cry at what a depressing aftermath we’ve deviated to since the likes of heroes carved into Mount Rushmore.

Borowitz frames his lament into three time stages: Ridicule, Acceptance and Celebration. In the first stage, Reagan and Quayle are a few of the politicians over whom Americans grew appalled. In Acceptance, Clinton’s sax playing, George W. 's chuckling gaffes and Palin's geography blunders lulled Americans into thinking it was beneficial to vote for politicians with whom we could hit the pubs. Currently, many are mixed up in the current sad state of affairs, Borowitz’s Celebration stage, where smart politicians mask their intelligence, pandering to and entering the group fray.

Borowitz’s book thankfully ends with an action plan to help end the Age of Ignorance insisting that political activism (getting active in local level politics and change) is much more sensible that what he calls political hobbyism, sitting on the sidelines and commenting on social media thinking you can change minds from the web’s impersonal distance. He is also a fan of my aforementioned avoidance to ‘news’ in favor of attending local governmental meetings.

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