Friday, April 22, 2005

Yet Another Not Very Bright Politician

A scientific miracle: South Carolina is blessed to have a clairvoyant politician, in the person of Representative John Graham Altman III. This exceptional individual can read minds, and he can predict the future: just ask him a question, and he can tell you're too dumb to understand the answer!

Here's the context:

Excerpts from the exchange between WIS-TV reporter Kara Gormley and Rep. John Graham Altman, R-Charleston, over a S.C. House committee's vote to make cockfighting a felony while tabling a bill that would toughen criminal domestic violence laws

Gormley: "Does that show that we are valuing a gamecock's life over a woman's life?"

Altman: "You're really not very bright, and I realize you are not accustomed to this, but I'm accustomed to reporters having a better sense of depth of things, and your asking this question to me would indicate you can't understand the answer. To ask the question is to demonstrate an enormous amount of ignorance. I'm not trying to be rude or hostile, I'm telling you."

Gormley: "It's rude when you tell someone they are not very bright."

Altman: "You're not very bright, and you'll just have to live with that."

Hmm, and all this time I was under the [clearly mistaken] impression that the ability to explain, and educate others is the mark of an intelligent person. Actually, truth be told, I was far more deluded than that: I was convinced it is the in-the-know person's obligation to convey complex information clearly [informed consent anyone?].

But never mind what I think. When discussing such a paragon of intellect as Rep. John Graham Altman one better rely on official sources.

Thankfully, the South Carolina Legislature has a Kids Page, so there's hope, for those of us who aren't as brilliant as Rep. John Graham Altman, that we, too, might be able to acquire a better sense of depth of things. Here's how the page explains the Rep.'s job:

The General Assembly is the group of men and women that work to create the LAWS that govern our state. All members of the General Assembly must be chosen by the citizens of South Carolina to represent them and the area where they live.

So, Rep. John Graham Altman is a public servant. His job is to represent the citizens of his state, and to be accountable to them. For example, when his constituents have a question about laws the Rep.'s been voting on, his job is to *answer* that question, on topic.

As a member of the South Carolina House of Representatives, Rep. John Graham Altman's conduct is governed by the SC House Rules (.pdf):

When the House is called to order, every member shall take his seat and shall act with decorum at all times when the House is in session. Every member, when about to speak, shall rise from his seat and respectfully address himself to "Mr. Speaker" and shall avoid disrespect to the House or the Senate and all personalities, observe decency of speech, and shall confine himself to the question under consideration.

How fortuitous for the Rep. that he was addressing just a lowly reporter/constituent, as opposed to a person that matters. [Boys and girls, can you say double standard? And, boys and girls, allow me to take this opportunity to remind you these politicians are the people who decide what your medical care should be.]

Bottom line: Since Rep. John Graham Altman has all these super duper powers, I say we make good use of them. Here is the Rep.'s contact information:

District 119 - Charleston Co.
Contact Address:
(H) 77 Folly Rd., Charleston, 29407
Bus. (843) 747-6461 Home (843) 763-5313
(C) 306B Blatt Bldg., Columbia, 29211
Bus. (803) 734-2947 Home

Send him your questions and watch in awe how this intellectual giant bedazzles you with his snappy, snazzy ability to determine just how dumb you really are.

(via feministing)


At 5:13 PM, Blogger Dr. Charles said...

very nice post. i have a few questions that i'd like answered in condescending ways... does he have an email address?

At 5:45 PM, Blogger Orac said...

Heh heh. Nice piece of snark. I'm impressed. Unfortunately, since I'm not a registered voter in his district, he certainly won't bother to answer me.

At 8:29 PM, Anonymous lisa said...

okay! oh... should i use the standard "dee-ah bubba" salutation?


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