But What Does That 'Get a Brain Morans' Dude Think About All This?
I've had this nagging question bouncing around the old brain-pan for the past day or two.
It's about this dude:
You know him, you love feeling superior to him, he's clearly a superstar among liberal bloggers and their readers.
Booman referenced the iconic tea-partier* the other day, and something one of his commenters wrote got me thinking:
I am almost starting to feel sorry for that guy in the picture. Poor bastard.
He's probably too stupid to have a computer, but his kids will see their dad forever.**
Of course, an enormous number of stupid people own and use computers. Yet studies suggest that in terms of the websites we browse and the news media we consume, we are a deeply polarized nation. According to a Pew study, online users tend to "find and join groups that share their ideological, cultural, and lifestyle preferences."
And that widely-cited study of the political blogosphere during the 2004 elections (PDF):
... we found that liberal and conservative blogs did indeed have different lists of favorite news sources, people, and topics to discuss.... The division between liberals and conservatives was further reÃ¯Â¬â€šected in the linking pattern between the blogs, with a great ma jority of the links remaining internal to either liberal or conservative communities.
We're also sorting ourselves out in the real world, living in communities of increasingly like-minded people. Who travels in moran-dude's circles? Well consider this: it's not just the hilarious misspelling that makes the image so rich, but also the knowledge that none of the people around him noticed. (You just know he proudly carried that sign around all morning as he anticipated sticking it to those smug hippie liberals.) So I think it's safe to assume that he and his pro-war fellow-travelers probably aren't big readers of Daily Kos or Talkingpoints Memo.
Which raises an interesting question: could a viral internet sensation like 'get a brain morans' dude -- a sensation only on our side of the information divide -- be splashed all over hundreds of thousands of web-pages and not even know it? Is he living his life, listening to Rush's soothing stream of grievances as he drives to and from his crappy mcjob, completely oblivious to the fact that he's brought countless smiles to the lips of millions of progressives across the country?
Is it possible in this wired era of social segregation to get your 15 minutes of fame and just miss them entirely?
I mean, surely that guy's as well known as this one ...