We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Like grandpa, I know the answers to all of those questions, but I'm not sure I learned them in any school setting.
I'm pretty sure I picked them up just through daily reading over my 50 years of life.
So, the problem in my mind isn't so much related to a decline in education as it is related to a general decline in reading.
I don't know many young people (i.e., 12-22) who regularly read. Books, magazines, articles on the internet, alt weeklies, whatever . . . seems they spend way more time watching moving pictures with dialogue than we ever did, or communicating with their friends through electronic means than we did or do, and, since they can pre-determine to only watch shows that appear to already match their knowledge and beliefs, and can limit their friendships to people who think as they do, they never get a chance to confront a new or upsetting idea. Ever.
This country and the typical Obama voter are pathetic. The NEA should be banned for all the good they have done, charter schools must become the norm. Competition is the only way.
We're turning out a nation of morons who can play on electronic devices and don't know much about anything else. The danger is that like the girl in the Obama tee, they are so smug about their support for this dangerous fool. And we are even bigger fools by allowing it to continue.
Gibbon and Spengler were right: The west is a dying culture, we see it all around us every day, manifested in many ways. The Obama voters are just as I expected: How else could this useless community organizer get elected?
You can plot national IQ scores against TV ownership and get nearly 100% inverse correlation. Get a copy of "Four Arguments for the Elimination of Television", written almost 40 years ago by a reformed ad guy - and give it to a young mother after you've read it. In a few more years even this won't work, but while some of us can still read and think analytically, there may be a chance to save a few kids. Today's thought: There's not ENOUGH unemployment.
Hell, what's scary is that even I knew the answers and I'm a Canadian!
But trust me, it's not an American thing. Fire some 1 July questions to a Canadian about our own Confederation in 1867 and I'd guarantee similar results - and I'm willing to guarantee that only grand-dad will have the answers.
My ancestors were on the losing side which is why, er, I'm a Canadian.
Dick Parks: You can plot national IQ scores against TV ownership and get nearly 100% inverse correlation.
As TV ownership is nearly 100%, the statement loses its meaning.
These videos support the poll taken after the 2008 election in which Oilbama voters were more likely to believe that Republicans had control of Congress before the November 2008 election. IOW, Oilbama voters were less informed than McCain voters.
These videos and the aforementioned polling results bring forth an irony. More than wingnuts, IMHO, libs place importance on group characteristics. We libs are brighter, more edjumicated, better informed, better traveled, more enlightened, less racist, blah blah blah etc. etc. than you wingnuts. We libs are really God's gift to the world. I don't really care about group identity: there are people more/less educated than me on both sides of the aisle, and that holds for any such trait.
Federal government debt: 61-29 % Tea Party Supporter versus Tea Party opponent.
Terrorism: 51-29 % Tea Party Supporter versus Tea Party opponent.
Size and power of the federal government 49-12 % Tea Party Supporter versus Tea Party opponent.
Powerline puts it rather succinctly: Basically, Tea Partiers are people who have a more sophisticated understanding of current events than those who describe themselves as anti-Tea Party. Anyone who doesn't realize that the exploding federal debt represents a serious threat to our future either is a fool, or doesn't have children. (That, actually, would make for an interesting survey.)
The responses on terrorism are interesting, too: there is evidently a common thread between obliviousness to the dangers of debts we can't pay and to the dangers of Islamic terrorism, but it is hard to see what that common thread might be, other than blind, stupid loyalty to the Democratic Party.
We have here three pieces of evidence that the other side of the aisle is less informed: the videos, the post November 2008 poll, and the more recent Gallup Poll. The question is: how do we inform the other side, especially when the MSM has no interest in doing so?
Remember that blog-readers, especially at a high-falutin' place like Maggie's, are not a representative sample of our generations. I went to school with kids who didn't know those things either, and I supposedly come from a golden era of education we're all trying to get back to.
bobby b hits on an important point. It is not so much the learning as the using and reinforcing that keeps these bits in memory. We learned the major exports of Ecuador, too, but that doesn't mean we remember it. It's not the schools. It's us.
Assistant Village Idiot
"What does that tell us?"
Kill everyone below the age of forty that came out of the public schools. What, does that seems wrong?