Monday, April 23, 2007

Maybe next time the smart people will elect the President

Bush voters and supporters: the least educated Americans

I just listened to the President's press conference this morning. Expressing confidence in his embattled Attorney General, Bush said Gonzalez "did no wrongdoing." Of course, the Fox News website misquoted him in an effort to correct the President's grammar: ("...there's no wrong doing"). Most people who have a fair grasp of the English language know that our President is grammatically challenged. Not occasionally, but almost daily. This has given rise to what is now known as Bushisms. Frankly, I find it to be an embarrassment ... one that could be overlooked if balanced by a stellar record of accomplishment, but no.

Formal 'education' is not a prerequisite for intelligence and wisdom. However, education can often remedy ignorance. Yes, it bothers me that the states with the least number of college educated adults proved to be the base of support that reelected GW Bush in '04. Proof is found in the statistics.

Consider the US Census Bureau's stats that show the % of adults over 25 that have completed a Bachelor's Degree ranked by state. When sorted by states whose electoral votes went to Bush, the results are glaring:

12 of the TOP 14 states in % of college educated adults voted for John Kerry: D.C., MA, CT, MD, NJ, VT, MN, NH, WA, NY, CA, RI

ALL of the BOTTOM 16 states in % of college educated adults voted for Bush: WV, KY, MS, AR, NV, IN, AL, LA, TN, OK, IA, OH, SD, SC, WY, NM

Just look at the chart at the bottom of this page (link). The further 'south' you go in educational attainment, the deeper you delve into 'Bush country.' Stats also show that the 25 states with median household income less than the national median, 23 (92%) voted for Bush. I was reminded of this fact on a weekend off-road motorcycle trip when I came out of the state forest in Cheatham County to find a trailer surrounded by trash and unimaginable squalor ... and a large "BUSH/CHENEY '04" sign proudly tacked to the fence. Scary redneck'sville! Yep, that's what I'm saying, if you're a redneck or trailer trash, you probably voted for Bush.

This educational deficit among Bush voters also explains why a third of the population continues to dogmatically support the President despite how badly he has done. It is the least educated and most ignorant of our population that is most susceptible to manipulation by fear, simplified political jargon, and buzz words (like the so-called "moral values" GOP platform). Demagoguery also played upon the simple minded in the election. Conservatives have made the word "liberal" synonymous with god-less, cowardly, indecisive, etc... but does anyone care to really understand what these words actually mean?
Here's an explanation from Roget's Thesauraus. Which group would YOU be more proud to be a part of?


















23 comments:

Anonymous said...

I don't understand the purpose of these articles or this website. Adds nothing of academic value and polarizes the issues.

William said...

It's not supposed to be academic, this is a blog and yes, it is polarizing, perhaps. It's just me... venting. You know, like that bumper sticker says: "If you're not completely outraged, you're not paying attention." The right to question our government is as American as apple pie, it is supposedly what our soldiers have been fighting and dying for - for over 200 years. I have never been interested in politics until recently because America has never previously been in a situation of incompetent leadership in my lifetime and it concerns me deeply. It should concern you as well. I'm open to discussion. That is what this blog is about, discussion. I find such discussion is best undertaken apart from my academic career.

Tman said...

So what you're saying is that "smart" people voted for Kerry, and "not as smart" people voted for Bush?

If this is your argument, well, that's pretty stupid.

William said...

If you read the entire post I said "Formal 'education' is not a prerequisite for intelligence and wisdom. However, education can often remedy ignorance." The statistics speak for themselves, Bush was reelected by a demographic of Americans that are the least educated. Fact.

Tman said...

So is your point that Bush was re-elected by people with less formal education than those that did not vote for him, or is it that the smart people voted for Kerry, and the dumb ones for Bush?

At least have the strength of your convictions when sounding like a condescending elitist.

William said...

Generally speaking, it is a safe bet to say that those with college degrees, on the average, are yes, smarter, have more aptitude, are more aware and less ignorant than those who have less education. Of course there are exceptions, as I said. That is the nature of demographics.

Tman said...

So let me ask you this, do you consider conservatives less intelligent than liberals?

William said...

Considering that most conservatives are clustered in rural areas and the south where education lags behind the national average, I'll let the stats speak for themselves.

William said...

Tman, another demographic you might enjoy is that conservative states lead the nation in obesity.

It's all in the stats.

Tman said...

Why, because you're afraid to say it yourself?

To say that conservatives are not as intelligent as liberals is by itself an unintelligent statement.
People such as Milton Friedman, Friedrich Hayek, Irving Kristol, Leo Strauss -I could go on- prove this to be demonstrably false.

I don't judge all liberals based on the actions of cerain individuals, and you should consider doing the same with conservatives.

Tman said...

You continue to look even more condescending by using unrelated criteria to try and insult conservatives.

By doing so you only prove the point that elitists deserve no place in democracies.

William said...

I was just waiting for the list... heh.

You're citing specific individuals, I'm citing national trends and demographics. Which do you think is more valid to base a general statement upon?

Tman said...

I don't make generalized statements like the ones you have, because you can't judge an entire population of people on their intellectual capabilities based on weight and voting tendencies.

But I guess you're just too stupid to understand this.

pam said...

tman- what don't you get here? statistics don't lie. conservatives are dumber and fatter than liberals!

Anonymous said...

people in general are just dumber in the south, not much debate over that

Anonymous said...

Tman what does "cerain" mean...I have never seen that word before...the only word that I find comes close to it is spelled: certain...so where are you from?

William said...

Come on, we all make typos... thanks to tman for taking time for the discussion.

Anonymous said...

Yes William we all can make mistakes...not only typos...mistakes happen all the time even with stats...stats get the information based on the number of people who fill out the forms or take the phone calls...and frankly I don't believe every one tells the truth when they fill out the forms...College Degrees don't make some smarter...it just teaches people about a certain field of study and they get a piece of paper stating they completed the course work...you can get a degree even with C's and D's...there are a lot of good people in the United States that do the best they can and vote based on the information they are given...maybe the people just made a mistake this time...so why don't you give them a break and find something to help people instead of hurting them by pointing out there level of education or how fat they are...what are you doing to help?

William said...

Stats on college educated adults don't come from 'people filling out forms'. They come from factual information. I just report, you decide.

What I am trying to do to help is to create change, to show that America is better than what our leadership has driven us into. I'm trying to show how we got where we are today. By exposing the wrongs, we can make it right. We need to educate the ignorant, dispel the myths and lies drilled into us by our corrupt and failed leadership. Justice demands that we hold those accountable for the devastating misdeeds done to America by the GOP culture of corruption.

Anonymous said...

as much as i'd like the agree with you, if you took a statistical analysis course in university, the intellectual bastion of liberals (joking), you'd realize that your statistics aren't useful for the point you're trying to insinuate. for example, in a state with a high average level of education, there's no way to know if many people possessing postgraduate degrees voted for bush while the more numerous with lesser degrees voted for kerry. in bush states, it could be that college graduates and some high school graduates voted for bush, while some possessing no high education voted for kerry.

again, there's no quantitative distribution of the votes amonst the populace, meaning that there is no quantitative accounting for the level of education and for whom each candidate voted. you're trying to apply a state-level analysis on the individual, which is why your statistics can't back the assumption you're trying to make.

in fact, many conservatives i know are very intelligent . . . but intelligent people can be lead to believe very, very STUPID things (e.g., creationism, trickle-down economics, "stay the course").

Anonymous said...

as much as i'd like the agree with you, if you took a statistical analysis course in university, the intellectual bastion of liberals (joking), you'd realize that your statistics aren't useful for the point you're trying to insinuate. for example, in a state with a high average level of education, there's no way to know if many people possessing postgraduate degrees voted for bush while the more numerous with lesser degrees voted for kerry. in bush states, it could be that college graduates and some high school graduates voted for bush, while some possessing no high education voted for kerry.

again, there's no quantitative distribution of the votes amonst the populace, meaning that there is no quantitative accounting for the level of education and for whom each candidate voted. you're trying to apply a state-level analysis on the individual, which is why your statistics can't back the assumption you're trying to make.

in fact, many conservatives i know are very intelligent . . . but intelligent people can be lead to believe very, very STUPID things (e.g., creationism, trickle-down economics, "stay the course").

Anonymous said...

as much as i'd like the agree with you, if you took a statistical analysis course in university, the intellectual bastion of liberals (joking), you'd realize that your statistics aren't useful for the point you're trying to insinuate. for example, in a state with a high average level of education, there's no way to know if many people possessing postgraduate degrees voted for bush while the more numerous with lesser degrees voted for kerry. in bush states, it could be that college graduates and some high school graduates voted for bush, while some possessing no high education voted for kerry.

again, there's no quantitative distribution of the votes amonst the populace, meaning that there is no quantitative accounting for the level of education and for whom each candidate voted. you're trying to apply a state-level analysis on the individual, which is why your statistics can't back the assumption you're trying to make.

in fact, many conservatives i know are very intelligent . . . but intelligent people can be lead to believe very, very STUPID things (e.g., creationism, trickle-down economics, "stay the course").

Anonymous said...

as much as i'd like the agree with you, if you took a statistical analysis course in university, the intellectual bastion of liberals (joking), you'd realize that your statistics aren't useful for the point you're trying to insinuate. for example, in a state with a high average level of education, there's no way to know if many people possessing postgraduate degrees voted for bush while the more numerous with lesser degrees voted for kerry. in bush states, it could be that college graduates and some high school graduates voted for bush, while some possessing no high education voted for kerry.

again, there's no quantitative distribution of the votes amonst the populace, meaning that there is no quantitative accounting for the level of education and for whom each candidate voted. you're trying to apply a state-level analysis on the individual, which is why your statistics can't back the assumption you're trying to make.

in fact, many conservatives i know are very intelligent . . . but intelligent people can be lead to believe very, very STUPID things (e.g., creationism, trickle-down economics, "stay the course").