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Jan 6 - A Bit of Clarity

Updated: Jun 15, 2022

A couple of things about January 6th have not been mentioned enough.

Politics, Not Truth or Justice

Obviously, the way January 6th is being treated is political. As noted before the primetime show trial began, the Democrats driving the process really have four goals:

  1. Distracting the American public from the dismal state of the country under the Biden administration as the mid-terms loom,

  2. Painting all Republicans as white supremacists or sympathizers,

  3. Ending the Electoral College - simply because Democrats think that will help them with the next few presidential elections (not because they have carefully considered the Federalist Papers and concluded Hamilton was wrong), and

  4. Banning Trump from being able to run again, or at least tarnishing him further.

But, that is not all that is driving this overreaction. Here are three simpler factors:

  1. Ratings,

  2. Family feuds, and

  3. "First-person-ism."

What's That Clickin' Noise?

Based on his Jimmy Kimmel appearance, even Joe Biden realizes news shows are desperate for ratings and web content providers are desperate for clicks (though he doesn't understand the difference).

As a result, they both need hype; making a bigger deal of anything is always the bias. CNN, in particular, needs to recover some audience. And, as you can tell when you get on the internet, calm, reasonable stories don't get the clicks Joe mentioned.

So, it is in media's best interest to sensationalize everything, including January 6th.

It's Personal

The elites who tend to get elected to high office are narcissists. They have been spoiled and constantly affirmed since they were born, and they genuinely think they are more important than the rest of us. It's all about them.

Donald Trump upset their caviar cart. He crashed a party for which he did not receive an engraved invitation. They consider him crass and unsophisticated. Worse, he insulted some of the Established Families. The Bushes and Cheneys, for example. Sadly, these people (many of whom we trusted) put their butt-hurt ahead of the nation and our future.

Undoubtedly, they have rationalized in their own minds that "it is important for the nation and the world that Trump never again be in charge. We are saving the world from this nut!" Yeah, except his presidency was objectively a success, especially in the rear-view mirror of the last 17 months.

And, regardless, don't pretend you are "saving democracy" by invalidly impeaching and prosecuting someone just because you don't think he should be president (or, really, because you simply don't like him). Shouldn't have to say this, but in the current Alice In Wonderland environment, maybe I do: elites disqualifying someone from being able to stand for election is the opposite of democracy.

"I Was THERE!"

Lastly, there is an even simpler reason Congress thinks January 6th is the mostest, importantist thing that has ever happened in the literal history of the universe!

They were there.

Recency bias is part of it. We have this cognitive distortion wherein recent events are perceived as more important than older events. That is how pundits, especially younger ones, can naively assert the January 6th hearings are "the most important hearings in the history of the United States."*

But Congress is worked up about this primarily because of "proximity bias."** Things we experience first-hand are perceived as more profound and more important than things we just hear about. And they are certainly the things narcissists would rather talk about.

For example, Nancy Pelosi is intellectually aware of the homeless people living in her district and the 100,000+ drug-related deaths and 20,000+ murders annually in the US (and the 10,000+ drunk driving deaths, Paul). But, it's not happening to her. She drives around it and flies over it. To her, they are just abstract and boring numbers in a report.

But ...

January 6th was in her crib. She saw it (kinda). She was part of it. She may have even thought she was in danger.*** The same is true of the other members of Congress. The ridiculous AOC, as an illustration, apparently hid in a closet and really thought she could have been raped and killed.

Stupid as it sounds, clearly much of the hysteria about this event (as partly evidenced by the breathless testimonials and monologues) comes simply from where it happened - and not because it was a "desecration of the Temple of Democracy" or whatever they have been calling it. Rather, they are still in a tizzy because January 6th was a brief disturbance inside their insulated, coddled retreat - the perch from which they callously harm and endanger the rest of us.

* recency bias (and simple illiteracy) is how Michael Jordan was voted the greatest college basketball player of all-time (so you know, it was Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, then Lew Alcindor), and how he was selected by ESPN as the greatest athlete of the 20th Century, erroneously beating out Jim Thorpe, Babe Didrikson and Muhammed Ali, for example.

** apologies if I slightly misused "proximity bias" as a term of art, but you get the idea.

*** In an interview about Jan 6, Pelosi talked about being impacted by the following: "when we came back from the undisclosed location, And I saw my staff, I saw in their eyes something I had never seen before. The trauma, the fear of it all." The Speaker needs to see the trauma in the eyes of Americans who are living in Democrat-controlled inner cities.

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