Summary: From the sturm and drang about Campaign 2016 we might believe it offered us a wide choice of candidates and policies. Much of Trump’s platform is standard right-wing doctrine (e.g., bomb the Middle East, tax cuts for the rich). Clinton offers standard doctrines of the center-left Goldman-neocon-neoliberal alliance. Here anthropologist Maximilian Forte looks at Sanders, representing the half-heads. Let’s start soon to do better in 2020.
By Maximilian C. Forte from Zero Anthropology.
Reposted with his generous permission.
“Half-head”: this signifies a way of approaching problems that involves efficient thinking, where efficiency comes from an intensely selective focus. A half-headed approach could be a combination of unspoken or unconscious interests, the accumulation of taboos around certain subjects, the desire to appeal to select audiences, the product of an ideology — some or all of these, and perhaps a few more. While a half-head can produce answers quickly, the answers are always half-answers at best.
While the imagery produced for this essay implies mockery, and suggests that a half-head is somehow brain damaged or deficient, the objective here is not to laugh at half-heads. In fact, if having a half-head is a problem, then it is a fairly ordinary and widespread problem, where most of us are half-heads, at least half the time. The objective is instead to point out how the half-head dominates US political discourse, possibly more now than previously (say, at Eisenhower’s time). A half-head will only give us half the story. While one might think that two half-heads are as good as one, so that all we have to do is add half-answers together, the solution is a little more complicated than that. First, let’s describe the problem in specific instances.