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Stupid America

(as seen in SHTFplan.com)

Depressing Survey Results Show How Extremely Stupid America Has Become

This article was originally published by Michael Snyder at The Economic Collapse Blog.

Ten years ago, a major Hollywood film entitled “Idiocracy” was released, and it was an excellent metaphor for what would happen to America over the course of the next decade.  In the movie, an “average American” wakes up 500 years in the future only to discover that he is the most intelligent person by far in the “dumbed down” society that he suddenly finds himself in.  Sadly, I truly believe that if people of average intellect from the 1950s and 1960s were transported to 2016, they would likely be considered mental giants compared to the rest of us.  We have a country where criminals are being paid $1000 a month not to shoot people, and the highest paid public employee in more than half the states is a football coach.  Hardly anyone takes time to read a book anymore, and yet the average American spends 302 minutes a day watching television. 75 percent of our young adults cannot find Israel on a map of the Middle East, but they sure know how to find smut on the Internet.  It may be hard to believe, but there are more than 4 million adult websites on the Internet today, and they get more traffic than Netflix, Amazon and Twitter combined.

What in the world has happened to us?  How is it possible that we have become so stupid?  According to a brand new report that was recently released, almost 10 percent of our college graduates believe that Judge Judy is on the Supreme Court…

The American Council of Trustees and Alumni publishes occasional reports on what college students know.

Nearly 10 percent of the college graduates surveyed thought Judith Sheindlin, TV’s “Judge Judy,” is a member of the U.S. Supreme Court. Less than 20 percent of the college graduates knew the effect of the Emancipation Proclamation. More than a quarter of the college graduates did not know Franklin D. Roosevelt was president during World War II; one-third did not know he was the president who spearheaded the New Deal.

It can be tempting to laugh at numbers like these until you realize that survey after survey has come up with similar results.

Just consider what Newsweek found a few years ago…

When NEWSWEEK recently asked 1,000 U.S. citizens to take America’s official citizenship test, 29 percent couldn’t name the vice president. Seventy-three percent couldn’t correctly say why we fought the Cold War. Forty-four percent were unable to define the Bill of Rights. And 6 percent couldn’t even circle Independence Day on a calendar.

Even worse were the extremely depressing results of a study conducted a few years ago by Common Core…

*Only 43 percent of all U.S. high school students knew that the Civil War was fought some time between 1850 and 1900.

*More than a quarter of all U.S. high school students thought that Christopher Columbus made his famous voyage across the Atlantic Ocean after the year 1750.

*Approximately a third of all U.S. high school students did not know that the Bill of Rights guarantees freedom of speech and freedom of religion.

*Only 60 percent of all U.S. students knew that World War I was fought some time between 1900 and 1950.

Of course survey results can be skewed, and much hinges on how the questions are asked.

However, even studies that are scientifically conducted confirm how stupid America has become.  In fact, a report from the Educational Testing Service found that Americans are falling way behind much of the rest of the industrialized world.  The following comes from CBS News

Americans born after 1980 are lagging their peers in countries ranging from Australia to Estonia, according to a new report from researchers at the Educational Testing Service (ETS). The study looked at scores for literacy and numeracy from a test called the Program for the International Assessment of Adult Competencies, which tested the abilities of people in 22 countries.

The results are sobering, with dire implications for America. It hints that students may be falling behind not only in their early educational years but at the college level. Even though more Americans between the ages of 20 to 34 are achieving higher levels of education, they’re still falling behind their cohorts in other countries. In Japan, Finland and the Netherlands, young adults with only a high school degree scored on par with American Millennials holding four-year college degrees, the report said.

Out of 22 countries that were part of the study, the Educational Testing Service found that Americans were dead last in tech proficiency, dead last in numeracy and only two countries performed worse than us when it came to literacy proficiency

Half of American Millennials score below the minimum standard of literacy proficiency. Only two countries scored worse by that measure: Italy (60 percent) and Spain (59 percent). The results were even worse for numeracy, with almost two-thirds of American Millennials failing to meet the minimum standard for understanding and working with numbers. That placed U.S. Millennials dead last for numeracy among the study’s 22 developed countries.

So why has this happened?

Why have we become such an extremely stupid nation?

Well, at least a portion of the blame must be directed at our system of education.  The following is an excerpt from an article written by reporter Mark Morford.  In this article, he shared how one of his friends which had served for a very long time as a high school teacher in Oakland, California was considering moving out of the country when he retired due to the relentless “dumb-ification of the American brain”

It’s gotten so bad that, as my friend nears retirement, he says he is very seriously considering moving out of the country so as to escape what he sees will be the surefire collapse of functioning American society in the next handful of years due to the absolutely irrefutable destruction, the shocking — and nearly hopeless — dumb-ification of the American brain. It is just that bad.

Now, you may think he’s merely a curmudgeon, a tired old teacher who stopped caring long ago. Not true. Teaching is his life. He says he loves his students, loves education and learning and watching young minds awaken. Problem is, he is seeing much less of it.

And of course things don’t get much better when it comes to our college students.  In a previous article, I shared some statistics from USA Today about the rapidly declining state of college education in the United States…

-“After two years in college, 45% of students showed no significant gains in learning; after four years, 36% showed little change.”

-“Students also spent 50% less time studying compared with students a few decades ago”

-“35% of students report spending five or fewer hours per week studying alone.”

-“50% said they never took a class in a typical semester where they wrote more than 20 pages”

-“32% never took a course in a typical semester where they read more than 40 pages per week.”

I spent eight years studying at some of the finest public universities in the country, and I can tell you from personal experience that even our most challenging college courses have been pathetically dumbed down.

And at our “less than finest” public universities, the level of education can be something of a bad joke.  In another previous article, I shared some examples of actual courses that have been taught at U.S. universities in recent years…

-“What If Harry Potter Is Real?

-“Lady Gaga and the Sociology of Fame

-“Philosophy And Star Trek

-“Learning From YouTube

-“How To Watch Television

Could you imagine getting actual college credit for a course entitled “What If Harry Potter Is Real?”

This is why many of our college graduates can barely put two sentences together.  They aren’t being challenged, and the quality of the education most of them are receiving is incredibly poor.

But even though they aren’t being challenged, students are taking longer to get through college than ever.  Federal statistics reveal that only 36 percent of all full-time students receive a bachelor’s degree within four years, and only 77 percent of all full-time students have earned a bachelor’s degree by the end of six years.

Of course our system of education is not entirely to blame.  The truth is that young Americans spend far more time consuming media than they do hitting the books, and what passes for “entertainment” these days is rapidly turning their brains to mush.

According to a report put out by Nielsen, this is how much time the average American spends consuming media on various devices each day…

Watching live television: 4 hours, 32 minutes

Watching time-shifted television: 30 minutes

Listening to the radio: 2 hours, 44 minutes

Using a smartphone: 1 hour, 33 minutes

Using Internet on a computer: 1 hour, 6 minutes

When you add it all up, the average American spends more than 10 hours a day plugged into some form of media.

And if you allow anyone to pump “programming” into your mind for 10 hours a day, it is going to have a dramatic impact.

In the end, I truly believe that we all greatly underestimate the influence that the mainstream media has on all of us.  We willingly plug into “the Matrix” for endless hours, but then somehow we still expect “to think for ourselves”.

There are very few of us that can say that we have not been exposed to thousands upon thousands of hours of conditioning.  And all of that garbage can make it very, very difficult to think clearly.

It is not because of a lack of input that we have become so stupid as a society.  The big problem is what we are putting into our minds.

If we continue to put garbage in, we are going to continue to get garbage out, and that is the cold, hard reality of the matter.

We have an election coming up.  And many of these folks vote.

I weep for our Nation.

 

h/t Doc in Yuma

Death, Or Hanging

There was a recent ‘news’ item regarding the ‘debate’ over gun control policy between Secretary of State Clinton and Senator Sanders.

To wit (in part):

Sanders and Clinton clash over guns at debate

Caitlin Dickson

Breaking News Reporter
March 6, 2016

FLINT, Mich. — One of the more heated moments at the CNN-MLive.com debate here Sunday came after moderator Anderson Cooper turned the floor over to Gene Kopf, whose 14-year-old daughter, Abigail, was critically injured in an Uber driver’s shooting spree on Feb. 20, which left six dead in Kalamazoo, Mich.

Kopf asked what Democratic presidential primary candidates Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders would do to crack down on mass shootings, adding that he didn’t “want to hear anything about tougher laws for mental health or criminal backgrounds, because that doesn’t work.” Kopf noted that Jason Dalton, the man who was charged with the shooting that nearly killed his daughter, “had no mental health issues recorded, and had a clear background.”

Clinton began by saying, “We have to try everything that works to try to limit the numbers of people and the kinds of people who are given access to firearms,” and she agreed with Kopf that “not every killer will have the same profile.”

But, she continued, “I also believe, so strongly, Gene, that giving immunity to gunmakers and sellers was a terrible mistake.” Clinton was referring to the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act, which protects gun manufacturers and sellers from being held liable when their products are used to commit crimes.

Sanders, Clinton pointed out, voted in favor of that bill when it passed in 2005.

“No other industry in America has absolute immunity … and they sell products all the time that cause harm,” Clinton said. “You talk about corporate greed? The gun manufacturers sell guns to make as much money as they can make.”
Her comment drew sustained applause.

Cooper piggybacked on Clinton’s reference to the gun immunity law, noting that the “families of Sandy Hook victims announced that they are going to sue Remington, who made the AR-15, which was used in the Newtown massacre,” but that the law Sanders supported was likely to prevent them from doing so.

“Tonight, what do you say to those families?” Cooper asked Sanders.

“Well, this is what I say, if I understand it — and correct me if I’m wrong. If you go to a gun store and you legally purchase a gun, and then, three days later, if you go out and start killing people, is the point of this lawsuit to hold the gun-shop owner or the manufacturer of that gun liable?”

Simply put, Sanders argued, illegal gun sales are one thing, but he doesn’t believe that manufacturers should be held responsible for a crime committed with a product that someone purchased legally.

“I think what you do is you hold those people who have used the gun accountable. You try to make guns as safe as possible,” Sanders said.

The sort of liability regulation that Clinton supports would be too onerous and potentially threaten gun manufacturing, said the senator from Vermont. Sanders campaign has made the decline in manufacturing jobs in the United States a major area of focus, and he and Clinton have clashed repeatedly on the gun issue over the course of the campaign.

“What you’re really talking about is ending gun manufacturing in America,” said Sanders. “I don’t agree with that.”

I’m probably preaching to the choir here, but to me it sounds like Hitler and Mussolini debating who gets possession of Ethiopia.  A Progressive versus a Socialist.  Splitting hairs comes to mind…

Can you imagine such a discussion regarding The First Amendment?  Which books, blogs, films, and periodicals could be limited or eliminated?  Or publishers?

New World Order?

YES, WE ARE ALMOST DONE.
JUST ONE ELECTION DECIDES OUR FATE….
ALMOST THERE


There are 8 levels of control that must be obtained before you are able to
create a socialist/communist State.  The first is the most important.

5 OF THE 8 ARE DONE – THE LAST 3 ARE ALMOST THERE???

1.  Healthcare:  “Control Healthcare and you control the People.”  DONE!!!
2.  Poverty:  “Increase the Poverty level as high as possible.”  Poor
People are easier to control and will not fight back if you are providing
everything for them to live.  DONE!!!
3.  Debt:  “Increase the National Debt to an unsustainable level.”  That
way you are able to increase Taxes, and this will produce more Poverty.
DONE!!!
4.  Gun Control:  “Remove the ability to defend themselves from the
Government.”  That way you are able to create a Police State – total local
control.  ALMOST THERE!!!
5.  Welfare:  “Take control of every aspect of their lives” (Food, Livestock, Housing, and Income).  DONE!!!
6.  Education:  “Take control of what People read & listen to take control of what Children learn in School.”  ALMOST THERE!!!
7.  Religion “Remove faith in God from the Government and School.” ALMOST THERE!!!
8.  Class Warfare:  “Divide the People into the Wealthy against the Poor.
Racially divide.”  This will cause more discontent and it will be easier to Tax the Wealthy with full support of the voting Poor.  DONE!!!

 The bases are all covered!  We are ripe for the New World Order.

I’ve no idea where this list originated.  I’ve seen similar lists for many years, even before the existence of the Internet.  Some purporting to be born of the Communist Party of the United States after WWI (?!)

Regardless, it does appear to be a suitable group of steps necessary for fundamental change from this Constitutional Republic to something progressing past it.

Fundamental change – where have I heard that before?

h/t Boyd & Donna

Register To Vote!

and good things will happen!

(as posted in full by Peter…)

So much for privacy . . .

If you’re a registered voter in the USA, it looks like your personal information has been compromised.

A whitehat hacker has uncovered a database sitting on the Web containing various pieces of personal information related to 191 million American citizens registered to vote. On top of the concomitant problems of disclosing such a significant leak to that many people, no one knows who is actually responsible for the misconfiguration that left the data open to anyone.

Researcher Chris Vickery … has his hands on all 300GB of voter data, which includes names, home addresses, phone numbers, dates of birth, party affiliations, and logs of whether or not they had voted in primary or general elections. The data appears to date back to 2000. It does not contain financial data or social security numbers.

. . .

Right now, thanks to someone’s carelessness, it’s free to anyone who can find what Vickery did. That means anyone in the world can find out where a person in the US lives and what political beliefs they may have. If they can find the database, scammers and marketing folk alike will likely benefit most.

There’s more at the link.

I fear that in the age of the Internet, personal privacy has become nothing more than a contradiction in terms . . .

Peter

We Don’ Need No Stinkin’ Borders!

George Soros (or as Glenn Beck calls him, the ‘spooky dude’) openly admits ‘national borders are the enemy’.

If he would a libertarian, I might believe he has an open, free-market agenda.

BUT, he IS George Soros…

(From The Natural News, in part:)

(…)

‘Let’s take down all borders’

Following Orban’s statement, Soros sent an email to Bloomberg Business, in which he claimed that his foundations actually help “uphold European values,” while Orban’s actions in bolstering the Hungarian border and thus impeding a huge influx of migrants “undermine those values.”

“His plan treats the protection of national borders as the objective and the refugees as an obstacle,” Soros added. “Our plan treats the protection of refugees as the objective and national borders as the obstacle.”

In October, Orban accused pro-immigration non-governmental organizations (NGOs) of “drawing a living from the immigration crisis.” He singled out those funded by Soros, who is a strong supporter of transnational bodies like the European Union and the United Nations. Also, his Open Society Foundation (OSF) provides assistance for pro-immigration activists, and he is well-known in the U.S. and internationally for supporting “progressive” (read far-Left) causes like the Bill and Hillary Clinton Foundation and the Center for American Progress.

In fact, the OSF website notes: “We believe that migration and asylum policy should be grounded in economic and demographic realities, not driven by temporary political considerations or popular misconceptions.

“In Europe, many of our civil society partners are raising their voices demanding a common European approach in line with international human rights commitments.”

In a recent interview, Orban said that immigration and multiculturalism were working in tandem to change the face and traditions of Europe, it’s “Christian roots” in particular, all while creating “parallel societies” (just like mass immigration in the U.S. – and isn’t it peculiar that President Obama and Lefty Soros have the same view on mass immigration?).

So sayeth the ‘spooky dude’.

Do you think they are looking to destabilize existing governments by taxing the system until it breaks? Just as Cloward and Piven suggest?

Naw, just a coincidence…

Pay no attention to the spooky dude behind the curtain.

Or in the White House.

Hillary Soros

Become A Member Of The Party!

…or, rather, a dis-member!:-)

(from Joel, in part)

In a year when Donald Trump is the GOP frontrunner, you have to dig deep to find political news that’s considered weird. But leave it to the intrepid Libertarians to fill that void…

Libertarian Party drama: Goat sacrifice, eugenics and a chair’s resignation

Adrian Wyllie, chairman of Florida’s Libertarian Party, resigned his post Thursday to protest the party’s U.S. Senate candidate, accusing the rival of supporting eugenics and for being expelled from a cult group for “sadistically dismembering a goat in a ritualistic sacrifice.”

The dispute between the two has brewed for months, but finally came to a head after Wyllie was unable to persuade the Libertarian Party of Florida’s executive committee to publicly disavow Invictus, an adopted name that means something like “Invincible Sun Emperor.”

In other news, spokesmyn(sp) for the National Libertarian Party say they simply don’t understand why nobody takes Libertarians seriously.

And people ask me why I’ve never joined (aka filled-out-forms and sent money to) the National Libertarian Party?

For whom have I voted?  My standard answer is, “The Australian Secret Ballot is one of our most cherished possessions!”

And I’m certain even MORE ridiculousness is evident in the skeleton closets of the two major parties!

Full disclosure – I have stumped for some of their candidates (especially back in the 70’s), but I have never dismembered a goat (even to make tacos)!

AMEN, Sistuh!

Roberta X(from the lovely, talented, and geekily knowledgeable Roberta X, in part…)

(…)

Everyone running for the Democrat nomination wants to turn a large number of gun-owning citizens into some kind of Federal criminal, with the only question being, “felon or malefeasant?”  But only one of them has hands-on experience in the kind of police-state tactics it would take to make that work, and in making them palatable to a population of people who could reasonably be expected to be skeptical.

Meanwhile, most of GOP’s hot prospects are sellin’ various flavors of Return-to-Jesusland* and shippin’ out the Dangerously Brown (a difficult trick — y’know how there are so many guns in the U.S. that no power could ever grab ’em all?  Imagine if those guns had volition didn’t want to be found…).  I’ll grant that there are serious, good reasons — including humanitarian ones — for a more secure and better-patrolled border; it’s this business of plannin’ to comb through the population and root out a “dangerous element” often referred to as “parasitic” that stinks on ice to me — and it should to you, too.  Do you recall what kinds of societies had any success at that kind of thing?  Do you realize what it takes to make it work? (Ahem, “Papers, please?”)  Did you sleep through World History class?

This is one of the lousiest candidate pools I have ever seen. Mr. Bloomberg is the worst of them — worse than Mr. Sanders, worse than Mr. Trump.  If he enters the race, I may have to vote in the Democrat primary just so I can vote against him.
_________________________________
* Except this country never was. The American Revolution can be cast as a kind of dialogue between the Enlightenment/Age of Reason ideas that pushed it and the Great Awakenings that bookended it.  From that angle, the Establishment Clause of  First Amendment represents a brilliantly common goal: neither party was desirous of a State church.  Thus the United States was explicitly made a safe place for believers and nonbelievers of every stripe.  This is a delicate balance and has been maintained with varying degrees of elegance and civility though the years.  We should fear any politician who feels a mandate to Do Good — especially if he or she believes it was granted by Divine authority.

There’s really nothing further to say on this subject.

Rich, White Candidate Meets BLM

No, NOT the Bureau of Land Management…

Breaking: Hillary Meets With Cop-Hating #BlackLivesMatter Radicals, Calls Racism ‘America’s Original Sin’

Screen Shot 2015-10-09 at 7.26.24 PM

Comes out saying this:
Screen Shot 2015-10-09 at 7.20.45 PM

Apparently, Hillary Clinton has forgotten or doesn’t care BLM chanting for the death of police and supporters/members actually shooting police officers. She apparently missed DeRay McKesson, that’s the guy in the ridiculous blue vest in the middle of the picture, and his class at Yale, ‘In Defense of Looting’.

Wife of America’s first Black president hanging with her potential constituency. I suspect next on the list are The New Black Panthers*, La Raza and The Weather Underground.

We KNOW which way the wind blows with this woman…

I’m not big on labeling, but divisive, unprincipled, dishonest, and yes, evil…

*not to be confused with The New Christy Minstrels (and no, this is not a minstrel show joke!)

h/t Weasel Zippers

‘Immigrants’ Will Do The Jobs We Won’t

Or those on which we gave up…

After the Fed admitted over a year ago that the US unemployment rate (which in 2012 was supposed to be a rate hike “threshold” once it hit 6.5% and is now at 5.1%) has become irrelevant in a country where a record 94 million people have left the labor force, and with the Fed poised to hike rates even though US hourly wages have not only not increased for the past 7 years, but for the vast majority of the labor force continue to decline, some have asked – is there any labor-related chart that matters any more?

The answer: a resounding yes, only it is none of the conventional charts that algos and sometimes humans look at.

The one chart that matters more than ever, has little to nothing to do with the Fed’s monetary policy, but everything to do with the November 2016 presidential elections in which the topic of immigration, both legal and illegal, is shaping up to be the most rancorous, contentious and divisive.

More @ Zero Hedge

h/t Free North Carolina

The Boy Who Cried Wolf

We all remember that Aesop Fable.

Fast-forward to today, wherein people are lampooned for worrying about the Jade Helm military exercise.

I wonder why they came to the conclusion there was something malicious about it?

Could it be governmental actions have been less-than-benign now for over 40 years?

  • unwarranted airport searches
  • unwarranted sobriety checkpoints
  • unwarranted vehicle searches for contraband at the borders
  • unwarranted personal questioning with regard to citizenship or legal residence
  • local police abuse of constitutional rights
  • federal agency abuse of constitutional rights
  • intelligence agencies spying on American citizens’ cellular telephones, Internet communications, snail mail, conversations and all manner of communication
  • intelligence secret ‘courts’ forcing citizens into black ‘prisons’ for interrogation without benefit of counsel or constitutional protections
  • military-sanctioned assassinations via drone strikes of U.S. Citizens overseas
  • The U.S. Attorney General not ruling out similar actions on U.S. soil

Ad infinitum, ad nauseum

I believe in the Constitutional Republic of The United States of America.  Whatever we have been perverted into is not the same nation, however.

It is no wonder that people reflexively want to believe the worst about their government.  FEMA concentration camps, contrail poisoning, and Jade Helm are just the tip of the conspiracy theory iceberg.

We need to support a presidential candidate in this next election who proposes dialing back the abuses of the past 40 years.

Of course, if we truly believe in conspiracies, they will be discredited or assassinated before that happens.

tin_foil_hat_area

"Round up the usual suspects."

In Loving Memory…

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