A few days ago, I posted a somewhat snarky graphic about Bernie Sanders and his followers. I see posts like that all the time on my feed about Clinton, and my reaction is to say “pppbbth” and to move on. The Rocket Scientist shared the same graphic, along with a comment that this had been his experience with Sanders supporters, and some of the Sanders supporters on his feed…
Demanded an apology.
He refused, of course, as I would have as well. It’s politics; as a (real) friend of mine would say, “suck it up, buttercup.” Of course, a lot of these people have never deigned to be involved in politics, so they wouldn’t know this.¹
In the course of this… discussion, loosely called… one of the combatants snarked, after the Rocket Scientist asked how Sanders would fulfill his promises, “It’s not rocket science.”
No, it’s not rocket science. It’s harder.
Rocket science has unknowns — that’s what research is for. But the unknowns are often known, or at least can be guessed. Government, politics, and economics deal in knowns, and as Dick Cheney said, known unknowns and unknown unknowns. And even unknowable unknowns.
A patriotic, or traitorous, take your pick, NSA contractor leaks extensive details about surveillance programs and then scarpers off to Russia, and people from Senators down to the mailman become worried about their privacy.
A real estate bubble bursting causes the economy to crash, and with it large automakers, and it becomes necessary to bail out the automakers, because otherwise hundreds of thousands of people will be out of work: autoworkers, supply chain employees, and all the businesses down the line.
A war entered into on the basis of bad — or completely false — intelligence further destabilizes an already unstable region, leading to a decade of fighting and death of thousands of American soldiers and millions of Iraqis and the rise of a terrorist organization more powerful than the one that went before.
And before that, fundamentalist madmen fly planes into the World Trade Center, and all of a sudden Americans condone torture and the detainment of men on only suspicions.
Being president requires being diplomatic when necessary and kicking ass when required. The president has to deal with Congress and executives and the American people. It is a dance that needs skill and timing and exquisite understanding of the situation at hand.
Compared to that, rocket science is a walk in the park.
¹I fully expect some of these people to demand an apology from me. Not gonna happen. Just saying.