Programming is absurdly simple. Back in the 80's, you couldn't throw a stone without hitting a kid who wrote games for his home micro as a hobby.
There were plenty of kids who knew how to write "10 PRINT FART; 20 GOTO 10" or who typed in listings from magazines, and I agree that programming at that level is probably accessible to most people - but you can't equate that level of programming with modern software development.
You've probably noticed this yourself, but there are a LOT of really stupid professional developers.
I wouldn't phrase it as "really stupid professional developers". There are certainly a lot of incompetent professional developers, and they're part of what's formed my opinion about some people not being mentally equipped for software development. Do you honestly believe that such a proportion of people who make their living developing software are that bad at it purely because they're lazy, apathetic or unmotivated?
For the obligatory car analogy, most people are probably capable of learning to swap to a spare tyre, change the oil, or top up the radiator (learning some simple scripting). Most people are probably not capable of learning to design high-flow intake manifolds or variable valve timing mechanisms (useful commercial software development).
Anyone who's taught programming at a university level will know that even among intelligent students who want to learn, there are a large minority who (while they have many other valuable skills) are just not mentally wired to think in the way needed to develop software. It's a huge waste to try and push these people into doing something that they're not equipped for, instead of focusing on talents that they do have.
I thought this post was going somewhere much more worrying than "et hamster".
Seriously, that whole region is a mess of different factions who all want to fuck each other up and take over. The U.S. just upset the current top dog when they went in in 2001, and now are copping the blame for what's been happening since the Jews ran away from Pharaoh.