Okay, a little hyperbole. Obviously not everyone is an idiot.
But seriously, everyone is an idiot.
My friend Steve Patterson likes to say, “Everyone is wrong about everything all the time.” It’s a great quote because it puts us in the right frame of mind for engaging in a world of idiots. It’s not personal, it’s just reality.
When you find someone that is definitely not an idiot, follow them long enough and you will be shocked to discover what an idiot they are about as least one thing. This is the blessing and curse of independent thinking. You can’t find someone who isn’t an idiot at least sometimes, because 100% of us are.
People often say things like, “This person has [built a billion dollar company, patented a scientific breakthrough, created transcendent art, etc.] so clearly they’re not an idiot.”
No, they are definitely an idiot.
They have at least a handful of things about which they are not just wrong, but wrong in a stupid, elementary sort of way.
I’m sure some of you think I’m an idiot sometimes. Loathe as I am to admit it, there’s no way you’re not right at least some of the time. In fact, if I’m honest, there are a few ways in which even I know I’m an idiot.
While it’s self-destructive to always be a critic and a cynic, it’s useful to realize how dumb everyone is. It takes the pressure off. You won’t be so shocked when you encounter apparently smart people acting like idiots. You won’t feel anger or disillusionment. You won’t blindly follow them assuming they know better than you.
Just because someone’s an idiot doesn’t mean they are a bad person, or not incredibly smart about certain things. You don’t need to get mad at them for being an idiot. Because you are too.