With a single memorable image of America falling into the abyss, the incisive editorial cartoonist Tom Toles (Washington Post, November 15) foresees the fate of a country in the hands of indecisive leaders, denialist propagandists, fake-balance journalists, “centrist” analysts, and widespread scientific illiteracy.Toles adds this text:
Way to go!
The economy of the 21st century will be based on an educated workforce. This will entail a familiarity with science and technology and the ability to recognize that peer-reviewed scientific work is a conspiracy. Employers will be looking for people to compete against foreign workers by having the skills to look online and find a Web site that tells them that entire fields of science are a hoax.
The United States is still, even in this era of budget cuts, able to turn out millions of adults ready and willing to cite obscure e-mails to prove that all scientists want is to control their lives. Adults able to seek out and find television and radio programming that gives them CLEAR, CONSISTENT misinformation that they can use to elect politicians who will turn that misinformation into policy.
And parenting is key. If you are one of the fortunate millions who have had these opportunities to arm yourself with a delusional worldview, be sure to PASS THAT ON to your children. This will equip them for a productive life in the global dust bin. This is how the U.S. will position itself for leadership in a world that is changing, in more ways than one.