The yin of the information age helps explain the yang of guys like Gov. Paul LePage and Donald Trump.

Both men feed the politics of resentment in simple terms to a frazzled world running on emotion instead of intellect. They offer red meat to people hungry for simpler times, when life was easier to control and they were fat and happy at the top of the pecking order.

If you ever wonder – as I do – why an army of Americans shoot from the hip when making a political decision, seeing LePage in Portland on Tuesday helped explain it. LePage has charisma, passion and strength – and he doesn’t let facts get in the way of his message: He is a warrior for the people of Maine!

Not the rich people, mind you, or the environmentalists or the Democrats or the welfare freeloaders or the drug addicts; they are the ones making life difficult. Maine’s governor is a shining white knight on a black steed for people who reject what’s gray about life.

Thanks to the Internet, globalization and the speed and influence of social media, many people’s intelligence quotient has by necessity become secondary to an emotional quotient. They are bombarded with bits and pieces of juicy tidbits and don’t have time or energy to discern fact from fiction. An informed discussion that could elevate understanding is impossible because they don’t spend any time with anyone with a different perspective.

To understand why guys who appear shallow and boorish win hearts and minds and elections, just look at all the overweight people who diet on sides of beef. The popularity of fad diets demonstrates the tendency to crave simplicity in a complex world. Oy vey! All those vegetables and grain. Do you massage the kale before or after you soak the quinoa? Is there any such thing as a gluten-free lunch? It’s much easier to stick to a Paleo diet and eat like the cavemen who first roamed the planet did, or an Atkins diet and stick to bacon and eggs.

Trump has a similar meat-and-potatoes style. He blurts out stuff that is completely detached from reality, but he feels strongly about it and it sounds so easy. Mexican rapists? Build a wall. Domestic terrorism? Keep out the Muslims. Islamic State? Bomb them.

In today’s complicated world, would-be kings shouting proverbs at the top of their lungs is like comfort food. No pain, no gain. When the going gets tough, the tough get going. God helps those who help themselves.

The Internet, Segways, hoverboards, drones, sophisticated technology and paella on the one hand are balanced out by Simple Simons and shepherd’s pie on the other. Like yin and yang, or for readers who prefer Western philosophy over Chinese, LePage is not a moron, therefore Trump isn’t one either.

As the world gets more sophisticated and people are running on a treadmill to keep their heads above water, there’s solace in simple solutions to complex problems, even if they are not grounded in reality. Heroin is a problem, so the governor will call up the National Guard. Sounds like a plan.

Faith in God and science is on the decline while faith in blowhards is on the rise, because who has time to read Scripture or a thesis? LePage and Trump say things frustrated and resentful people can easily understand. They spoon up a diet of bluster barked in simple terms that is easy to digest.

Scared people caught in a storm of technology, terrorism and economic despair seek shelter in the eye of simplistic buffoons who speak in cliche because, well, birds of a feather flock together.

Cynthia Dill is a civil rights lawyer and former state senator. She can be contacted at:

[email protected]

Twitter: dillesquire

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