The Grand Experiment of America is nothing less than to test the historical question – Can man govern himself? Our Founders repeatedly asked that question of themselves as they labored to give the new nation the appropriate tools of governance so as to stack the deck in favor of a ‘Yes!’ answer. Jefferson’s admonishment put a bow on the prerequisites for such an answer – ‘A nation ignorant and free, that never was and never shall be.’ And over the last fifty years we have embarked on a course that has resurrected the worst fears of those courageous and farsighted men now two and a half centuries past.
I look at the inventory of evidence and cannot help but start with our national education system which has spread multi-generational ‘dumbth’ deep and wide across the land. From its schools emerge legions of young deeply ignorant of history and civics with inadequeate tools to help themselves since they are marginally literate and almost totally innumerate. They join those millions already on the sidelines from the workforce who have no means to evaluate the steady rain of ‘information’ that drenches them daily through countless channels enabled by an accelerating technology. These are what are commonly referred to as America’s sheeple. (cf Bryan Caplan’s Myth of the Rational Voter)
If we examine some of these deficits operating in the daily round, the picture of where we are headed becomes very clear.