I recently read the book "Think Like A Freak" authored by the Freakonomics team Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner. In it they address the brilliance behind the overtly obvious Nigerian scam emails that ask for your bank account info so they can transfer a large sum of money (say 1.3 million dollars) into your account and then into a final recipient's account as a means to avoid paying some sort of tax or legal fee. For your assistance in helping them though this loophole you will be given 30% of the total transaction.
Every time any person of sound mind receives one of these emails we immediately dismiss it as the scam that it obviously is. Why are they so obvious we wonder? Why do they not try to mask their deception, at least a little?
The answer is quite brilliant. If they wrote the scam email in a deceptive way then the scammer would have to spend a great deal of time cultivating several targets. Most of the targets would eventually wizen up and drop out of contention. The obviously fake emails allow them to find the perfect gullible target right away. No cultivation of a victim was needed and no time was wasted trying to sort through hundreds of potential victims. One email resulted in one bank account number. Obscurity would result in, say, one thousand emails eventually resulting in only one or zero bank account numbers while also taking up an enormous amount of time and energy.
I now find myself wondering if this is the same policy most of our republican representatives have placed into effect?
Talk to a republican friend, preferably and intelligent one, and ask them if they believe in climate change. Unless you live in in the boondocks of America, where the fight against science is gaining ground, most of them would say "yes" and many of those would even agree that it's man made. Why then are the numbers of GOP representatives who deny climate change so disproportional to that of their average constituent? Polls show that nearly 7% of Americans deny climate change, yet 58% of congressional republicans deny it. This isn't the only issue that republican representation has backwards either, it's just a readily available example.
Sure some of their thinking has to do with big oil money influencing their views but let's also consider the influence the Tea Party has over the GOP for a moment. The tea party is siphoning away the extremist Republican voters, thus diminishing their voter base and making them more susceptible to election losses. The GOP is now so afraid that they will lose the extremist vote that they are now taking their talking points from the tea party so as not to lose votes. They are taking the moderate republican base for granted and giving too much fuel to the bat-shit-crazy views of tea partiers on many serious issues.
That's where the same principle that the Nigerian Email Scammers use kicks in. By only striving to represent the most idiotic of their constituents the GOP may appeal to the extremists and moderates simultaneously because those moderates aren't as likely to vote democrat as the idiots are to vote for the tea party... especially should the GOP representative dare to express an intelligent view on an issue.
It is much more efficient for a Republican representative to appear publicly backwards than to waste time catering to intelligent voters that will already be voting in their favor. I fear that this process maybe gradually dumbing down many of the future republican voters and ultimately make the entirety of the party ideologically closer the idiots they may not currently identify with.
It's a shame that the party that claims to represents the honest, hard-working, and straight-talking American has lost its backbone, not to mention its honesty, its hard-working attitude, and its courage to talk straight.