Sunday, November 23, 2008

I weep for our future.

So, are you smarter than your average Elected Official? Go ahead and take this 33 question test.

The average for elected officials (which was slightly worse than the general populace) was 44 percent. Worse? Wow.

I did 77%. Post your score in the comments.

19 comments:

Anonymous said...

Sadly, I scored a mere 85%. Clearly there is no future for me in politics.

-Tim

P.S. On the other hand, I did score higher than Steve.
Nanananananana...

socratesthecat said...

Just another reason to build a giant dome city in Antarctica...

Anonymous said...

Methinks Tim and Steve skewed the entire month's scoring -- sadly, I did not contribute to the raising of the score. I scored a mere 58%.
I guess that makes me just another ignorant American who wents to college....and lurks in Googleblogland.

Anonymous said...

94% - 31 out of 33 right

One of my wrong answers, I didn't know

The other was the final question, in which the answers were (I think) worded funny.

Oh yeah..I had lucky (though semi-informed) guesses on a few of my right answers.

- Patrick

Anonymous said...

Methinks Tim is merely lucky at taking tests. I took a ASVAB test once for fun and made pretty pictures in the answer column. And scored pretty high although I don't recall the actual score. One of many reasons I don't trust packaged tests.

-Tim

Ed said...

90.91 %

Darn, 30 out of 33. I was hoping to have a perfect score. Or at least the highest here.

I got the last one wrong as well. I think I should have recognized that debt is not a function of current spending but is instead a function of past excess. Hard to believe that 8 short years ago we were concerned about a lack of new debt for our government. $700 billion here, $700 billion there - soon you are talking real money.

I do think that the Mayflower compact is the first clear seperation of church and state, as the puritains and the strangers had to mix together in order to have the coloney survive. But on rereading the questions I can see that this is really about the precise wording within the question. Tricky.

As far as the right way out of a depression, I had the answer correct, then changed it. Likely because of my natural inclination for government to be fiscally conservative.

Anonymous said...

On that last question, I realized that there is a difference between being current with your debt service (past debts as well as new ones) and being without debt.

I just could buy what they call the right answer: that spending per person equals taxes per person. It implies an equality of money in and out for each individual that is just not the case.

That answer was very badly worded.

- Patrick

Mike Substelny said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mike Substelny said...

I scored 87.88%. It was a pretty easy test, I expect the average 44% by elected officials is somehow skewed. It seems impossible for an individual to get a score so low, let alone an average of a group.

Ed said...

Mike:

The worst thing about the answers our elected officials gave, and our contemporaries, are the ones they got wrong. Take a look at the details - http://www.americancivicliteracy.org/2008/additional_finding.html

In the survey, our elected officials - who could be a person who served one term as a dog catcher, so that headline is a bit skewed - did not know:

* What a free market is
* Why we are not a "Christian Nation"
* What makes a public good, a public good
* What to do in a rescission
* Or how to define a profit

Bit sad really, since I agree - it seems a straight forward test. Similar to my American History tests in High School. And I was a C student in High School.

Kelley Holiday said...

I scored a 76%:-( In reviewing the ones I missed, I changed my answer on one which if I had kept my first impulse I would have gotten correct and had a 79%. Alas, the other ones I missed were all guesses. It's been too long since I studied all that crap. But still better than most elected officials :-)

Goodman Holiday said...

94%. And yeah, I missed the last one too. The important thing is, I did better than my wife and my brother! :-D

Ed said...

I think we should put our high scores in perspective. Reading the original study, the questions were asked with 60 other questions, and were asked as part of a phone survey. When testing over the phone, you cannot re-read the question, scan the answers and so on. Everything has to be done by asking - "Could you repeat that?" I think we would all do worse in that situation. I know I would.

Viktor said...

Also got 94% - 31 out of 33. Missed #8 and - umm.. - number 11?? The one about Roosevelt and the Supreme Court and another one...

Anyhoo... I'm amazed m'self. ;o)

Cheers!
Cowboy

Viktor said...

AH! The one about Plato and his posse... - that was the other one I'd missed!
Cowboy

grim said...

87.88 % Should have had coffee first.

I missed two questions involving Lincoln, which is an uninteresting era for me, I admit. I also was thrown off the last question by the poor wording of the correct answer. I missed the first amendment right question, which was just stupid.

I blame the lack of caffeine for that one.

Kollin said...

94% - 31 out of 33 right

Not too bad for a public school education.

Kollin

Anonymous said...

You answered 29 out of 33 correctly — 87.88 %

Answers to Your Missed Questions:

Question #4 - B. Would slavery be allowed to expand to new territories?
Question #7 - D. Gettysburg Address
Question #8 - C. appoint additional Supreme Court justices who shared his views
Question #33 - D. tax per person equals government spending per person


I feel pretty good about that not having taken a civics course in 26 years.

Brother Noomsee

Anonymous said...

kathy and garvin

garvin 70%

kathy 76%