Carnival of Useful Idiots

If you’re a regular reader, you no doubt already know that people like Cameron Diaz and Drew Barrymore are morons of breathtaking proportions.

But if you didn’t know that, or, wish to laugh (or cry) by means of a refresher, then read this account of Diaz’s MTV series Trippin. Yea, nothing like the "profound enlightened insight" gained from crapping in the woods, living in huts made of cow shit, and living amongst people whose newborns die like flies–unless, that is, they are lucky enough to live to the ripe ol’ age of 50.

(link: Balko)

Richard Nikoley

I'm Richard Nikoley. Free The Animal began in 2003 and as of 2021, contains 5,000 posts. I blog what I wish...from health, diet, and food to travel and lifestyle; to politics, social antagonism, expat-living location and time independent—while you sleep—income. I celebrate the audacity and hubris to live by your own exclusive authority and take your own chances. Read More


  1. Mandy on April 24, 2005 at 11:30

    You know, I've often wondered why people watch these shows. Do they find comfort in the fact that some celebrities are actually morons which makes the show viewers smarter than someone?

    I hate MTV.

  2. NicoletteRivers on April 24, 2005 at 16:11

    I think a lot of the things people do in the name of Environmentalism *is* misguided. I'm not sure if it's fair to say if you are rich or from a wealthy country you cannot take away lessons from the poor or less advantaged countries.

    Money is good in our society. Medical advances are good. Hospitals are good. It doesn't mean that we cannot learn anything from others. I'm not giving up most of my modern conveniences, but I don't equate them all with happiness.

    There seems to be a thought that the wealthy are hypocrites unless they give it all up and live in a mud hut. They get bashed for being selfish, and they get bashed for being charitable or concerned.

    This IS the one planet we have. The choices we make do matter. And it will be nothing short of a crime if future generations suffer because of the short-sightedness of the current generation.

    Thinking that we can learn from others doesn't seem that idiotic at all to me.

  3. Kyle Bennett on April 24, 2005 at 17:38


    These people aren't suggesting that some aspect of primitive culture can shed light on our culture by viewing it from a different perspective. That could be legitimate.

    What they are saying is that these primitive cultures are better than technologically advanced cultures, specifically because they are primitive. They're saying that there is a nobility in sacrificing technology for the sake of the environement.

    They conspicuously refer to modern technology as "conveniences" as a way of diminishing their value. Among the values that modern technology provides that they so casually toss away are an infant death rate that means 99 dead children in these primitive cultures for every one that dies in infancy in the US, and a life expectency 20 years lower than in the US. Imagine your neighborhood and your family if nearly everyone over 60 was dead, gone.

    Is having your grandmother, or your mother, or your elderly neighbor, around into your adulthood a mere convenience? Is not having to fear that there's a 10% chance that your child, or your grandchild, or a close friend's child, will be dead before she learns to read a mere convenience?

    Primitive cultures are orders of magnitude harder on the environment, per person, than technological cultures. The only reason the surrounding areas around these cultures are so "pristine" is that there are so few people there. In other words, the environment is better only because those primitives are considerate enough to die early to keep the population from swelling.

    That is really the implication of these sick celebrities' dreamy mooning over the prisitine environment of these noble primitives – that if we really wanted to help the environment, we'd all just have the courtesy to die and get out of Mother Nature's way.

    That may be a lesson you want to learn, but count me out.

  4. Richard Nikoley on April 24, 2005 at 16:53

    Do all the "learning" you like from naked savges in the jungle, Nicolette. I'll do my learning from civilization.

  5. Nicolette on April 26, 2005 at 07:33

    When they're talking about conveniences I believe they're are talking about tvs, radios, etc. I'm not saying they don't have "crushes" on a lifestyle that seems better in abstract, or that they've thought it through; but there seems to be a mentality that any act of global concern by a celeb is due to publicity or stupidity, rather than legitimate concern.

    Are some celebs idiots? Absolutely. Do you really think it's a higher percentage than the rest of the population? They just have enough cashflow to pursue their obsessions — wacky and otherwise.

    Cameron and gang are misguided on some level, sure. Just like most the famous people who lend their names to PETA are utterly clueless. The solution is what it always has been — educating the masses, not raising our children to be half-wits, not espousing causes we know zip about…

  6. Richard Nikoley on April 26, 2005 at 08:59

    This is why I call them "useful idiots." Do I think they are behind some plot to undermine civilization? No, of course not. And they are ostnsibly smart when it comes to things like their own careers, or at least smart enough to take good business advice.

    Of course, they're not leading this go-nowhere train. They're just along for the ride, encouraging others to jump on board. The whole idea is a soft-sell on environmentalism. Still dumb.

    Important in the big scheme of things? No, of course not. Environmentalism (not rational conservationism, which _is_ valid), such as it is, is a doomed movement. A thing can stand against facts and reality only so long.

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