If you're unfamiliar, it says that, when presented with competing hypotheses, you should choose the one that requires the fewest assumptions. Sounds great, but in this case, those really are the words of someone living that 1300s life. It's not quite as applicable to modern life. You know who doesn't view Occam's Razor as a problem solver? Science. The scientific method doesn't view Occam's Razor as an irrefutable rule that can be used to make decisions. You probably shouldn't either.
What I'm getting at is that your internet rules are meaningless when a guy who slept with a book of Hitler's speeches on his bedside for a decade is running for the highest office in all the land.
Politics As Comedy Is Ruining Us
"This isn't funny anymore." That one sentence sums up not only this election, but kind of the entire world's approach to politics these days, almost perfectly. Nigel Farage and his Brexit talk was funny at one point. A comic was on top of the Rodrigo Duterte story well before any of our traditional news outlets even bothered giving it the scant amount of attention they did. Now they and everyone else has gone back to not caring, even though he's legit unleashed the Purge in the Philippines by encouraging police and citizens alike to murder drug dealers and drug users. Hundreds have died, while thousands more have surrendered to avoid being killed -- which could very well be all for naught when you consider that we're talking about a guy who campaigned on a promise to execute 100,000 criminals and dump their bodies in Manila Bay within six months of taking office. That kind of thing sounds like movie villain evil that could never be real, right up until you realize he's already got 60,000 "criminals" in custody. Oh, hey, while I have you on the line about Rodrigo Duterte, have a gander at this passage from Trump's Second Amendment policy:
Probably nothing to worry about, right?
I get it. Comedy has always provided a means to question and challenge authority and all that, and I'm certainly not saying that should ever stop. That said, it's borderline insulting to suggest that Trump's run for president has been hilarious at any point. Fine, maybe like in January of last year or something. I don't know. The exact moment he said he was running for president again. Whatever, he tried that before and it went nowhere, he just wants publicity, etc, etc, etc. Maybe then.
A few short months later, which is still over a year ago, he was suggesting that we should deport Mexicans because they're disease-carrying rapists. That was not funny. It stopped being funny at that exact point, if nothing else.
If you disagree, consider this: If some Hollywood A-lister said that kind of thing in a very public way pre-2015 Trump, the ensuing outrage probably would've ended their career. Now, we'd just all be disappointed to find out they support Trump.
You're a crook, Tom Brady!
He's taken fringe ideas like mass deportation and scapegoating an entire race (or religion) for all of life's ills and made them mainstream issues. They're on the ballot now. We, as a country, legitimately get to say "yes" or "no" to very obvious racism this November. I so very wish I was more confident about how that's going to go.
Again, this aspect of his campaign started taking shape back in April, but even as recently as a few weeks ago, well-respected media outlets like Esquire were only just coming to terms with the fact that Trump isn't funny anymore.
There is no point during Trump's current run for office when jokes were in order. He's gotten the most attention right out of the gate, and he's done it by suggesting things that only a person who's never read a single history book or ever watched a single History Channel documentary would fail to realize are uncomfortably similar to things we associate with the one of the most brutal killing machines of all time.
Trump should have united us. Trump should have done for Republicans and Democrats what conspiracy theorists think aliens will do for the world's religions -- unite them in defense of what is clearly a common enemy that threatens the existence of everyone. Instead, he united both sides in hoping that his seemingly unstoppable success was some sort of anomaly or glitch that would work itself out soon enough while we all stood on the sidelines and laughed.
It didn't, and as of his RNC acceptance speech, he's still on some Nazi shit, even if he's stopped being so blunt about it. That's not good. None of this is good.
Adam needs some rest. Follow him on Twitter.
Want to know how to go mano-a-mano with a president? Daniel O'Brien can help with How to Fight Presidents: Defending Yourself Against the Badasses Who Ran This Country!