July 16, 2012

Explain this one

The Birther controversy has been raging since before Obama was elected President. The Hillary Clinton campaign actually started it; something for which she should be eternally ashamed. Still, once the President finally released what all the Looney Tunes Teabaggers were demanding you would have thought that might at least divert them to other, perhaps equally foolish endeavors. We should be so lucky.

Goofballs such as His Donaldness have kept the drum beating, which appears to be all it takes to feed the Faux News Nation and keep them in a frothing frenzy. In April of last year, prior to the release of the long form birth certificate, when presented with a simple statement and given the choices of True, False, and I Don’t Know, a full 15% of Americans were convinced that our President was not born in the United States. I thought that was shameful, but it turned out to be only the beginning.

As reported by Adam Berinsky in Model Politics, The Birthers are (Still) Back
“The January 2012 YouGov poll I reported in February demonstrated that the power of Obama’s action was short lived. Two-thirds of the initial 12-point increase in the percentage of respondents who said that Obama was born in the United States disappeared between April 2011 and January 2012.”

 "Barack Obama was born in the United States": Full Sample

April 2011
January 2012   
July 2012
Before release of birth certificate
After release of birth certificate

Not sure

There is no doubt in my mind that there is a connection between this kind of wingnuttery and efforts by the religious right to scale back the quality educational system once enjoyed by this nation; to 'dumb down' America. The less educated they are the easier they are to control. But such efforts have cost us dearly, both here at home and on the world stage.

The U.S. now ranks 25th in the world in math and 21st in science. 70% of eighth graders are below average readers. 1.2 million high schoolers drop out each year, and that number is rising. Almost half of all high school dropouts are jobless, directly costing the U.S. $300 billion annually in lost wages and taxes. Cohort costs raise that figure by another $200 billion.  [SOURCE]

Swallowing mass media lies and distortions is a byproduct of this purposeful ignorance and Foxification of America, but there is hope. The number of young people breaking free of the chains of the religious right is few but growing. The Internet can be credited with this growth as can the fact that a large number of freethinkers have finally gotten a bellyful of the garbage. Our friends of the Republican Party are helping too, by preaching jobs and the economy but consistently promoting anti-intellectualism and anti-humanism.

No doubt it will get worse before it gets better… but it will get better.



Old NFO said...

I've gotta say I still fall in the not sure category... There are too many valid questions still un-answered.

Mule Breath said...

If you see unanswered questions I wish you'd share them. For me it's settled, as it seems to be for the majority of Congress, SCOTUS and even the RNC.