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(Politico)   Remember the 13-year-old kid at CPAC 2009 who was going to be the conservative voice for a new generation? Well, he grew up and started thinking for himself. Then guess what happened   (politico.com) divider line 290
    More: Obvious, CPAC, democratic convention, pendulum, substantive, conservative talk, Newt Gingrich, blurbs, Jonathan Krohn  
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11764 clicks; posted to Politics » on 02 Jul 2012 at 6:22 PM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-07-02 06:37:26 PM

propasaurus: So already this kid is smarter than Grover Norquist.


NAILED. IT.
 
2012-07-02 06:38:17 PM

mr lawson: That truly goes for BOTH sides.


Yes it does. But only one side equates the concept of ignorance to a state of grace.

/which side is left as an exercise to the reader
 
2012-07-02 06:40:52 PM

mr lawson: Felgraf: GleeUnit: simsite9: What's funny is that almost every reason he gives for his shift is ultimately an insult to CPAC types.

"I've matured."
"I've given it more thought."
"The issues are so complex, you can't just go with some ideological mantra for each substantive issue."

The larger question is, why does about 25% of the population get stuck at 12 years old with a simplistic view of the world, and never move on?

Because thinking for yourself and questioning your surroundings is scary.

Lots of people really like their bubbles - a safe place where they can convince themselves that they've got it all figured out, and then tune their TV to a station that consistently reinforces that belief. Willful, blissful ignorance seems like it would probably be a very comfortable way to exist. Glad to see this kid was able to break out of that.

Aye. The thought that perhaps everything you knew was wrong, everything you'd been taught was incorrect.. that's goddamn TERRIFYING for a lot of people. So they refuse to acknowledge it as a possibility.

That truly goes for BOTH sides.
/really scary to think of it.


Yes, but to be fair, one side doesn't have a branch that said they wanted to outlaw teaching critical thinking.
 
2012-07-02 06:40:54 PM

kid_icarus: He isn't old enough to have really developed critical thinking skills and formed opinions of his own.


Texas bravely decided to tackle this issue head on, and for good reason: the kid was simply parroting what he had been immersed with.

It's a sad state of affairs when your ethical foundation hinges upon the "well it makes sense if you just don't think about it" line of reasoning. Even sadder when you openly recognize that this foundation requires such an uncritical dogma.
 
Bf+
2012-07-02 06:41:12 PM
He turned 14?
Mentally, I mean...
 
2012-07-02 06:41:46 PM
So it's like the opposite of coming out of the closet?
 
2012-07-02 06:43:10 PM

Lorelle: *cries tears of joy*

There's still hope for the younger generation.

/ex-conservative


Still hope for the younger generation? You mean the generation that is accepting of all lifestyles, is in favor of healthcare for all, cares about the environment, wants to end the unproductive war on drugs, doesn't try to control women's bodies, and actually cares about other people? The generation that didn't spend all their children's money, didn't crash the economy by creating bubble after bubble and then refuse to accept any responsibility, and didn't demand more tax cuts for themselves and less money for education for their kids? That generation? Yeah, I think that generation is going to be just fine.
 
2012-07-02 06:43:39 PM
That's nice and all, but the only difference between a dipshiat 13 year old boy and a dipshiat 17 year old boy is four years.
 
2012-07-02 06:44:47 PM

propasaurus: It was just me saying things I had heard so long from people I thought were interesting and just came to believe for some reason, without really understanding it.

Which is pretty much what we thought it was.


Which is exactly why Conservatives are attacking public education.
 
2012-07-02 06:46:03 PM
Empathy and maturity are the eternal banes of the G.O.P.
 
2012-07-02 06:47:02 PM

kid_icarus: He discovered girls?

/he couldn't fap to Bill O'Reilly forever.


www.theculturewatch.com

"But try and fap to this, it takes forever. Can't explain that."
 
2012-07-02 06:47:53 PM
As someone who would have also defined himself as "conservative" at 13, (primarily because I had absorbed it from the culture I was immersed in,) I say "kudos."

One thing I think I like about this particular interview is the way in which Johnathan Krohn distances himself from his past stance without making it sound like he's arrived at any kind of be-all-end-all philosophy; When you publicly commit to an overly specified set of viewpoints, political or otherwise, it can be difficult to change without losing face. It sounds like there is a level at which he realized that the error his 13-year-old self made was failure to give himself room to change as much as it was parroting things his family and church were saying.

I can't fault young people people for having strong opinions, but I do cringe when people swear up and down that they'll "always believe" something.
 
2012-07-02 06:49:16 PM
Maybe the saddest thing is that The Right glommed onto this kid and pushed him into prominence--a 13 year old kid--tell us, o wise one, tell us the Conservative Gospel. Give us speeches. Sell us your books.

Desperate.
 
2012-07-02 06:49:22 PM

Serious Black: Gyrfalcon: tallguywithglasseson: "I think it was naive," Krohn now says of the speech. "It's a 13-year-old kid saying stuff that he had heard for a long time.... I live in Georgia. We're inundated with conservative talk in Georgia.... The speech was something that a 13-year-old does. You haven't formed all your opinions. You're really defeating yourself if you think you have all of your ideas in your head when you were 12 or 13. It's impossible. You haven't done enough."

Also: 17.

Also: 20, 30...

Let's face it, none of us are the same as when we were 17. Hell, I was a hardcore communist when I was 19, it was the thing to do. I look back now and laugh my ass off at how idealistic I was then. It's only if your political outlook DOESN'T evolve that you've got issues.

Note that evolution takes some time. Having a different opinion yesterday than you do today (lookin at you, Mittens) is not the same thing.

I'd say the reason why you changed your mind and evolved your position is the most important way to distinguish between genuine evolution and pandering.


No argument here.
 
2012-07-02 06:50:23 PM

ArkAngel: kid_icarus: Grand_Moff_Joseph: Maybe there is hope for the youngest among us after all.

Absolutely. As the kid pointed out...a 13 year old is basically just parroting what he has heard from his community. He isn't old enough to have really developed critical thinking skills and formed opinions of his own. Myself, and lots of other kids from very conservative backgrounds, manage to evolve beyond that as we get older.

I was the opposite, myself. I grew up in a suburb of Portland, OR, one of the most liberal cities in the country. Environmentalism especially was big when I was growing up (the Northern Spotted Owl vs. logging debate raged during my youth). I only started my journey towards conservatism around 17 or so. I got a bit extreme about my views and also very vocal. Pissed off some people, impressed some others. Nowadays, my views have softened a bit (I lean more Libertarian than I used to) and I don't get all that vocal about it, having learned some tact.


It's amazing that you could form a political stance based on your opinion to a relatively minor fringe issue. I'm sure you're much more mature now though, right?
 
2012-07-02 06:50:48 PM
And this, right here, sums up my problem with children as spokespeople.

Children do not have fully-formed opinions. They don't know what they're talking about. Their views are evolving. That's fine and that's how it's supposed to be, but once someone's on camera, that is forever. Branding a person with an opinion that they held in childhood is just cruel.

/Let kids succeed, but don't think that they're child messiahs. This 'from the mouths of babes' bullshiat is just damaging them.
 
2012-07-02 06:53:23 PM

NURBS: Lorelle: *cries tears of joy*

There's still hope for the younger generation.

/ex-conservative

Still hope for the younger generation? You mean the generation that is accepting of all lifestyles, is in favor of healthcare for all, cares about the environment, wants to end the unproductive war on drugs, doesn't try to control women's bodies, and actually cares about other people? The generation that didn't spend all their children's money, didn't crash the economy by creating bubble after bubble and then refuse to accept any responsibility, and didn't demand more tax cuts for themselves and less money for education for their kids? That generation? Yeah, I think that generation is going to be just fine.


I wouldn't be so certain about that. Seems younger voters may be starting to skew right. Something about coming of age in a recession.

Pres. Obama's Weakening Grip on Young Voters Could Cost Him Election
 
2012-07-02 06:55:33 PM

Serious Black: Norquist


I came in to say essentially this, so, THIS.

"It wasn't me thinking. It was just me saying things I had heard so long from people I thought were interesting and just came to believe for some reason, without really understanding it. I understood it enough to talk about it but not really enough to have a conversation about it."

This is more or less how I went from being a Republican to whatever it is I am now.
 
2012-07-02 06:56:37 PM
They got to him man, they got to him. Somebody got to him and threatened someone he loves, probably his family. It's the same thing they did to Justice Roberts man, and it works every farking time. Conservatives have no real defense against this kind of attack - I mean they're the party of Family Values, so of course they value their families! God damn it I hate it when the libs do this to fine upstanding Conservative leaders.

/I hear Victoria Jackson is next
 
2012-07-02 06:58:35 PM

fusillade762: NURBS: Lorelle: *cries tears of joy*

There's still hope for the younger generation.

/ex-conservative

Still hope for the younger generation? You mean the generation that is accepting of all lifestyles, is in favor of healthcare for all, cares about the environment, wants to end the unproductive war on drugs, doesn't try to control women's bodies, and actually cares about other people? The generation that didn't spend all their children's money, didn't crash the economy by creating bubble after bubble and then refuse to accept any responsibility, and didn't demand more tax cuts for themselves and less money for education for their kids? That generation? Yeah, I think that generation is going to be just fine.

I wouldn't be so certain about that. Seems younger voters may be starting to skew right. Something about coming of age in a recession.

Pres. Obama's Weakening Grip on Young Voters Could Cost Him Election


Kids too young to remember what got us into this mess in the first place?
 
2012-07-02 06:59:23 PM

PsiChick: And this, right here, sums up my problem with children as spokespeople.

Children do not have fully-formed opinions. They don't know what they're talking about. Their views are evolving. That's fine and that's how it's supposed to be, but once someone's on camera, that is forever. Branding a person with an opinion that they held in childhood is just cruel.

/Let kids succeed, but don't think that they're child messiahs. This 'from the mouths of babes' bullshiat is just damaging them.


I cringe every time I see kids at liberal rallies and events. Asshole parents making us look bad.

My parents were (and often still are) pretty mum with their politics and religious beliefs specifically because they wanted to let me make up my own mind. I'm eternally grateful for that.
 
2012-07-02 07:00:32 PM

Serious Black: FTFA: "You're really defeating yourself if you think you have all of your ideas in your head when you were 12 or 13. It's impossible. You haven't done enough."

I wonder what Grover Norquist would think of this kid.


he's obviously bowed to peer pressure and is probably taking drugs?
 
2012-07-02 07:00:34 PM

Pincy: propasaurus: It was just me saying things I had heard so long from people I thought were interesting and just came to believe for some reason, without really understanding it.

Which is pretty much what we thought it was.

Which is exactly why Conservatives are attacking public education.


That's the really scary part for me. George Carlin put it a lot more eloquently than I could, but they don't want people to learn to think for themselves. They want to breed a generation of workers with just enough cognitive capacity to feed the materials into the machine that makes the widgets, to follow orders, and potentially carry a rifle. The Texas GOP pretty much blatantly said just that last week. It's mind-boggling.
 
2012-07-02 07:00:42 PM

fusillade762: I wouldn't be so certain about that. Seems younger voters may be starting to skew right. Something about coming of age in a recession.

Pres. Obama's Weakening Grip on Young Voters Could Cost Him Election


The best part of that article is where it contradicts its own premise.
 
2012-07-02 07:01:23 PM

Ambivalence: kid_icarus: Grand_Moff_Joseph: Maybe there is hope for the youngest among us after all.

Absolutely. As the kid pointed out...a 13 year old is basically just parroting what he has heard from his community. He isn't old enough to have really developed critical thinking skills and formed opinions of his own. Myself, and lots of other kids from very conservative backgrounds, manage to evolve beyond that as we get older.

some NEVER develop critical thinking skills. That's part of the problem.


Why do you think the republicans are coming out against critical thinking skills? This kid is a perfect example of the reason.
 
2012-07-02 07:02:05 PM

JerseyTim: He fixes the cable?


Don't be fatuous.
 
2012-07-02 07:04:21 PM
If everyone were so inquisitive and willing to meaningfully reflect on their beliefs, fox news would be a lot less influential.
 
2012-07-02 07:07:03 PM
images.politico.comwp.patheos.com.s3.amazonaws.com
 
2012-07-02 07:07:36 PM

fusillade762: NURBS: Lorelle: *cries tears of joy*

There's still hope for the younger generation.

/ex-conservative

Still hope for the younger generation? You mean the generation that is accepting of all lifestyles, is in favor of healthcare for all, cares about the environment, wants to end the unproductive war on drugs, doesn't try to control women's bodies, and actually cares about other people? The generation that didn't spend all their children's money, didn't crash the economy by creating bubble after bubble and then refuse to accept any responsibility, and didn't demand more tax cuts for themselves and less money for education for their kids? That generation? Yeah, I think that generation is going to be just fine.

I wouldn't be so certain about that. Seems younger voters may be starting to skew right. Something about coming of age in a recession.

Pres. Obama's Weakening Grip on Young Voters Could Cost Him Election


So, reading this article, I found a bunch of anecdotal interviews and one cited poll which found that Obama is dominating among one group of youths slightly less than among the other groups of young voters. Oh and that group, which is apparently an 'opportunity for Romney,' is 18-24 year olds who don't vote anyways.
 
2012-07-02 07:08:55 PM
Is there really a need for a thread whenever someone switches party? This isn't a game of red rover.
 
2012-07-02 07:09:31 PM
He got laid by one of his teachers and realized that there's more to life than trying to get rich while making everyone else's lives as miserable as possible?
 
2012-07-02 07:10:00 PM
p.twimg.com
 
2012-07-02 07:10:53 PM
The New Yorker? Isn't that a gateway drug to secular humanitarianism? He'll be gay married and pregnant with-in two years.
 
2012-07-02 07:11:42 PM
So...they're not going to do a follow up with him this year?
 
2012-07-02 07:11:46 PM

ArkAngel: kid_icarus: Grand_Moff_Joseph: Maybe there is hope for the youngest among us after all.

Absolutely. As the kid pointed out...a 13 year old is basically just parroting what he has heard from his community. He isn't old enough to have really developed critical thinking skills and formed opinions of his own. Myself, and lots of other kids from very conservative backgrounds, manage to evolve beyond that as we get older.

I was the opposite, myself. I grew up in a suburb of Portland, OR, one of the most liberal cities in the country. Environmentalism especially was big when I was growing up (the Northern Spotted Owl vs. logging debate raged during my youth). I only started my journey towards conservatism around 17 or so. I got a bit extreme about my views and also very vocal. Pissed off some people, impressed some others. Nowadays, my views have softened a bit (I lean more Libertarian than I used to) and I don't get all that vocal about it, having learned some tact.


I went a similar route as you. I grew up in a social democrat household, even called myself a socialist for a while. But as I grew older I saw government throwing huge amounts of money at every problem, and nothing getting better, as well as government intruding into private matters. I swung towards the right (probably not as far as you), then eventually settled on a centrist stance (also leaning libertarian). It's none of my business who marries whom, whether a woman wants an abortion, or if they prefer a martini or a joint after work. But I also don't want my money thrown down the black hole of social programs that haven't fixed any problems. I'm not an evil bastard, so I don't want to cut off aid to single moms (or dads) who are struggling to feed their kids, but I also don't like those (rare) baby factories who see welfare as their career.
 
2012-07-02 07:15:58 PM
Krohn is bucking the received wisdom that people become more conservative as they get older, a shift he attributes partly to philosophy.

Actually, you don't start getting liberal tendencies until you get into high school. Then maybe after you've partied your 20s away you start to become more conservative.

At least, that's the received wisdom. So what this kid did...not so much.
 
2012-07-02 07:19:45 PM
Wait, so he was 13 when he gave that speech, and he's 17 now and has gotten better, but the speech was given in 2010, so...?
 
2012-07-02 07:20:47 PM

kid_icarus: He discovered girls?


img228.imageshack.us
 
2012-07-02 07:21:54 PM
And when he is 30, he will be a conservative again.
 
2012-07-02 07:23:22 PM
FTFA: His favorite TV shows? "The Daily Show" and "The Colbert Report."

Read more: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0712/78068.html#ixzz1zVi6dh16



THEIR YOU HAVE IT FOLKS! LIBERAL INDOKTRE INDOCTRENA LIBERAL BRAINWASHING!
 
2012-07-02 07:24:03 PM

simsite9:

The larger question is, why does about 25% of the population get stuck at 12 years old with a simplistic view of the world, and never move on?


That's a feature of our educational system, not a bug.
 
2012-07-02 07:27:23 PM
Wittgenstein!!! Wont someone stop him before he philosophies again!
 
2012-07-02 07:27:47 PM
You're really defeating yourself if you think you have all of your ideas in your head when you were 12 or 13.

www.nndb.com
 
2012-07-02 07:30:28 PM

MyRandomName: Is there really a need for a thread whenever someone switches party? This isn't a game of red rover.


I don't know, how many 13 year olds are thrust into the limelight as a spokesperson for their political party?
 
2012-07-02 07:31:08 PM
What he says about being 13 and not being informed enough to form a political opinion is true, but can't the same be said at the age he's at now? I mean, at 17, you're still not directly impacted by most of what the government does yet. Give him a few years, when he's paying his own bills, using services his taxes go to, etc. I'm not saying he's wrong and will change his mind again, I'm just saying it's naive to think a teenager, no matter what the age, is exposed to enough to form an informed opinion about such things.
 
2012-07-02 07:31:38 PM

jaylectricity: Krohn is bucking the received wisdom that people become more conservative as they get older, a shift he attributes partly to philosophy.

Actually, you don't start getting liberal tendencies until you get into high school. Then maybe after you've partied your 20s away you start to become more conservative.

At least, that's the received wisdom. So what this kid did...not so much.


I would consider myself more conservative than I was a decade ago. All that means is I have to pay more attention to the Democratic party primaries.
 
2012-07-02 07:34:42 PM
I defined myself as a Conservative at age 13 too. I shudder to think what I would have sounded like had someone been foolish enough to give me a national stage.

This kid sounds awesome, and like he's turning into someone it would be cool to know. Good for him.
 
2012-07-02 07:35:33 PM

Genevieve Marie: This kid sounds awesome, and like he's turning into someone it would be cool to know. Good for him.


I feel sorry for him. His life is going to be one big YouTube comment thread from now on.
 
2012-07-02 07:36:05 PM

Umeraken Ideut: What he says about being 13 and not being informed enough to form a political opinion is true, but can't the same be said at the age he's at now? I mean, at 17, you're still not directly impacted by most of what the government does yet. Give him a few years, when he's paying his own bills, using services his taxes go to, etc. I'm not saying he's wrong and will change his mind again, I'm just saying it's naive to think a teenager, no matter what the age, is exposed to enough to form an informed opinion about such things.


Which is probably why he's staying away from labels and parties for now. Smart kid.
 
2012-07-02 07:37:23 PM
Caught the conservative bug from about age 14 into my mid-20's. Then I got a dose of what the real world is actually like, and decided that maybe every issue can't be fully explained by neat little talking points and invoking the founding fathers.

The saddest part is that the two conservative causes I held on to were Term Limits and a balanced budget. They both have been abandoned by the party (balancing the budget gets some play when the democrats have the reins, but we can't really count that.)
 
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