Monday, May 15, 2017

Today's Awesome Headline

If Americans Can Find North Korea on a Map, They’re More Likely to Prefer Diplomacy

Behold the guesses for North Korea's location from 1,746 American Adults; 36% got it right. The headline is a bit  misleading, because those who don't know where North Korea is are more likely to support war, but also more likely to support doing nothing. Those who know where it is tend to support sanctions, cyberattacks, and pressuring the Chinese to intervene, e.g., all the things we have been doing for twenty years.


G. Verloren said...

The apparent confusion of Korea with Vietnam is at least somewhat understandable, I suppose, but some of these guessing clusters are just absurd.

I mean, holy moley - there were a susbstantial number of people who couldn't recognize the silhouettes of India, Japan, and CHINA well enough to rule them (or their nearest northern neighbors) out as possible locations of North Korea?!

Other choice guesses include Sri Lanka (why would you choose the southern-most section of a region to guess as being North Korea?), Australia (again, not very "North" is it?), and the seemingly random guesses in the middle of the Pacific, the Phillipine Sea, and the Arabian Sea which weirdly do not seem to correspond with any actual landmasses.

Remind me - why do we allow just any idiot at all to vote? Shouldn't you have to pass a basic geography, history, and world affairs test? If you can't find China on a map, are you really fit to decide anything at all about who runs our country, and by extension what our foreign affairs should be like?

For that matter, we should probably require our actual presidents to pass these sorts of tests as wel (or at the very least, a certain proportion of their staff). It would probably also make sense to screen them psychologically, as we should have learned with Reagan's slowly advancing dementia, and as we need to learn now with Trump's.

Anonymous said...

in the 80s, National Geographic asked Americans to point to some well-known countries (no place obscure — France, Germany, Japan, etc.) on a map. I don't remember the numbers, but many if not most couldn't find Canada or Mexico accurately. Beyond that the results trailed off significantly . . .

leif said...

with the map looking like a birdshot target, i really have to wonder if the responses were serious or not. i know americans' geographic skills are abysmal, but this is astounding. fortunately for several of our allies, these same people aren't in charge of pointing *our* ICBMs at nork.