For the Clown of the Year Award, we have two categories. The first is Basic Stupid, which is for people who say or do things that as just so transparently stupid that it leaves you wondering how such a person could manage to master the concept of breathing.
So, for example, we have right-wing trolls. There was the occasion early in the year when, as they have done every year since 1976, the faculty and staff of Lake Superior State University in Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan, published a list of words and phrases to be "banished" because of overuse or general uselessness.
It's a lighthearted chance to express irritation at overused-to-the-point-of-cliche words and phrases.
When an article about the new list was published on AOL, the comments included hundreds and yes I do mean hundreds either mocking the students of the university as "morons" who will never get a good job (the project is done by faculty and staff, not students), ranting about "political correctness," or posting something along the lines of "[blank] trying to destroy free speech" with the blank filled in with "liberals" or "socialists" or "Democrats" or, most frequently, some version of "Barack Obama."
Then there was the case of federal immigration judge Jack Weil. There was a class action suit against the federal government, seeking to have the government provide appointed counsel for every indigent child who can't afford a lawyer in immigration court proceedings.
In a deposition as part of the government's defense, Judge Weil argued that providing such counsel is unnecessary because "you can do a fair hearing" even with toddlers representing themselves in court, claiming he has "taught immigration law" to 3- and 4-year-olds.
Most recently, there was CNN reporter Christina Alesci, who positively gushed over a panel being assembled to offer monthly advice to TheRump on the economy and taxes. She called it "really historic" and said it provides "some very diverse viewpoints" - even though it consists entirely of corporate CEOs, providing diverse viewpoints ranging from that of GE to that of GM.
But before we announce the winner, we have to make note of a Dishonorable Mention, which goes to Idaho Governor Butch Otter, who apparently has the IQ of his namesake without the compensation of the nice coat of fur.
About 78,000 folks in Idaho fall in the coverage gap between Medicaid and Obamacare subsidies - a gap the Medicaid expansion, of which Idaho has not taken advantage, was designed to fill.
Gov. OtterHisMind said he'd like to see something happen on that, but isn't really worried about it because he doesn't agree with the claim that people in Idaho are dying because they fall in the coverage gap and so can't get health insurance and so can't afford the health care they need.
After all, he said - and here it comes: "I see plenty of people in hospitals and they have insurance. And they're in the hospital. But they still die."
|South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley|
He certainly could have been Clown of the Year. But it was not to be.
Because the winner of the Big Red Nose for the dumbest thing said in 2016, the Clown of the Year, Basic Stupid category, is South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley.
In January, Governor Vacant Eyes gave the GOPper response to the Amazing Mr. O's State of the Union address and got some pushback because she said something about not following "the angriest voices." In defending herself afterwards, she said this:
"[W]e've never in the history of this country passed any laws or done anything based on race or religion. Let's not start that now."
That, my friends, is some powerful stupid.
South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, a very worthy winner of Clown of the Year 2016, Basic Stupid category.