If you ever suspect there are a lot of "dumb" Americans around, perhaps it's because there are:
# The United States is 49th in the world in literacy (The New York Times, Dec. 12, 2004).Twenty percent of Americans think the sun orbits the earth? Suddenly some of the opinion poll findings I see make more sense.
# The United States ranked 28th out of 40 countries in mathematical literacy (NYT, Dec. 12, 2004).
# One-third of our science teachers and one-half of our math teachers did not major in those subjects. (Quoted on "The West Wing," but you can trust it -- their researchers are legendary.)
# Twenty percent of Americans think the sun orbits the Earth. Seventeen percent believe the Earth revolves around the sun once a day (The Week, Jan. 7, 2005).
# "The International Adult Literacy Survey ... found that Americans with less than nine years of education 'score worse than virtually all of the other countries'" (Jeremy Rifkin's superbly documented book The European Dream: How Europe's Vision of the Future Is Quietly Eclipsing the American Dream, p.78).
# Our workers are so ignorant, and lack so many basic skills, that American businesses spend $30 billion a year on remedial training (NYT, Dec. 12, 2004). No wonder they relocate elsewhere!
Read the whole piece to see why America may not "Number 1" anymore:
No. 1? In most important categories we're not even in the Top 10 anymore. Not even close.Indeed.
The USA is "No. 1" in nothing but weaponry, consumer spending, debt, and delusion.