Americans are NOT stupid - discuss!

A General discussion about everything other than South Park

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SouthParkSoul
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Re: Americans are NOT stupid - discuss!

Postby SouthParkSoul » Sun Mar 09, 2008 4:33 am

When you make a thread saying americans are NOT stupid, then everyone who hates Americans and Americans are going to read it and inevitably get into a flame war between Americans and haters. And both sides take it very personally. Unfortunate, but true.
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Keejit
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Re: Americans are NOT stupid - discuss!

Postby Keejit » Tue Mar 11, 2008 3:55 pm

I don’t think that's true at all. The thread was posted clearly as a discussion topic. If people choose to see it in a hostile light that is really their choice and an unfortunate one.

The vast majority of posters here, with very few exceptions, enjoyed this thread and took part without seeing it as "a call to arms" so to speak. It's interesting how certain posters decided to comment aggressively in reaction to maybe one tiny part of an argument or comment and ignore the other well worded, reasonable, humorous, fact based, interesting information.

Sometimes there are other threads posted here about a stereotype or perceived flaw of a nationality or ethnic groups.

MAYBE because this topic was about the nationality of the majority of posters here rather than a minority that it provoked a small number of intensely angry comments. But I DO NOT know; I'm merely speculating.

Most people enjoyed this thread and took it as face value; a debate and that was that.

One thing is sure - sarcasm does not travel over the internet and irony has a far longer way to go.
superiorsavior
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Re: Americans are NOT stupid - discuss!

Postby superiorsavior » Tue Mar 11, 2008 6:36 pm

Obviously there are some stupid people and some intelligent people in America. However, the society of the majority of the nation isn't supportive of the intilectual (nor of the artistic), from all i've gathered, compared with Europe. The commercialised education means schools have a higher priority than getting good grades from the kids; raising money. They do this by placing far too great an emphasis on sport (WTF is a little league? We have school sports in the UK but when would it get on local TV or even radio? it's just for fun.) and the media/news encourages people to see those who arn't good at sports as somehow less intelligent than those that are, leading to universities filled with dubious sport scholarships.

I hear you don't have a national curriculum; therefore the standard of education vaires considerably between schools. Not good when compairing the intilectual achievment of candidates, so worse candidates end up in universities.
Some questionable subjects are taught from, what I can gather, at some schools.

The religious right's insanly anti-science stance (don't get into a religious debate; just assume the Science of evolution/big bang cosmology/ geology and religion are seperate) has had an advese effect on education over the last century, an effect which is sadly worsened during the Bush years (not his fault for once). This isn't to be found in other western nations to my knowledge, except South Korea.

Also, the rich are the only ones that can get into the best colledges, limmiting the education. This is getting the same in the UK sadly, but if education is limmited, how do we expect people to grow up intelligent?

With such a bad education system, it would be a mirraicle if the avarage american were as intelligent as the avarage EU citicen. Though some slip through and end up as intelligent as most of the Yanks on this site, probably learnt out of school though.
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Lady_Line_McCormick
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Re: Americans are NOT stupid - discuss!

Postby Lady_Line_McCormick » Tue Mar 11, 2008 10:51 pm

Yeah, supersavior is right. Unfortunately, rich people most can go to college, in Brazil, the public colleges you can enter if you pass from a difficult test, it's much better. The problem is the public school's education is much worse than the American's. Here there are private colleges, expensives or cheaps but they aren't as valorized as the publics ones.


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Big-Will
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Re: Americans are NOT stupid - discuss!

Postby Big-Will » Tue Mar 11, 2008 11:50 pm

superiorsavior wrote:western nations ... South Korea.

I don't think South Korea is a Western nation, though it's a First-World nation. ;)
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Keejit
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Re: Americans are NOT stupid - discuss!

Postby Keejit » Wed Mar 12, 2008 11:30 am

The points superiorsavior makes about education are very valid. Having a national curriculum, free (ish!) standardised education from 4/5 yrs to 17/18 years old and fairer access and choice to third level education (whether that's at degree or diploma level) is very important and I believe essential.

This will probably kill youse US-ians but Canada has the highest proportion of third level educated people in the world at nearly 50% of their population.

And just to boast for me own peoples Ireland is the third highest with approx 47% of third level educated people. Also, third level tuition fees are free in Ireland to Irish citizens who have never taken a degree before - you can't stay in college or university for the rest of your life freeloading. And, if you fail your yearly exams and have to repeat a year you have to pay for that.

And another thing I think is important, education success is measured almost exclusively (usually 80% or more) by exams and not multi-choice question exams - they are essay based exams.
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Re: Americans are NOT stupid - discuss!

Postby SouthParkSoul » Wed Mar 12, 2008 1:09 pm

What would the ideal education system be? Take out what you don't like, put in your ideas. Who knows where this could lead.

A compulsory and difficult test to determine who gets into college, and get rid of being able to buy your way into college. Create a national cirriculum so everyone is supposed to be as smart as everyone else.

The only way you can teach creationalism
(god created the Earth) is to teach every religion's idea of how Earth came to be, including scietific theories.

Depending on the score of the test mentioned above, the student can go to a
(best, good, average) college. Gives the Student an incentive to to better.

That presents another problem. We can't stuff every kid who passes the test into a college, because of space, tuition, and availability of proffesors.

In America we already have a test like that, called the SAT, but you can still get into good colleges because of your physical prowess or other things you do.


Add to, take things out, correct. But don't criticize, you don't like something, take it out or change it. Think of something that would add to it or something not mentioned, add it in.
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Keejit
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Re: Americans are NOT stupid - discuss!

Postby Keejit » Wed Mar 12, 2008 2:10 pm

SOUTHPARKSOUL - I'm not sure exactly what your argument is - it's not very clear to me but to reply to some of what I think you're saying - a national curriculum is a standard only. It means that every kid is taught the same material at the same level. It also standardises the teaching.

Some teachers are better & more dynamic than others. Similarly some kids are smarter than others so results will always vary. It's not possible that everyone could be as smart as everyone else simply because they've all read the same book or learnt the same mathematical equations, etc.

The concept promotes a level playing field (to use a very clichéd cliché!) so that choices are broadened and more inclusive. Access to better education should not be based on wealth or high intelligence for scholarships.

There is a testing/measuring structure in every education system to appropriately assess a student's ability to learn, manage and hopefully excel in studying a particular subject at university level, eg, there's no point in allowing someone who's weak at maths to study physics. Also some people are simply not made for or are interested in further study beyond secondary/high school so they couldn't and would want to manage thrid level.

I truly believe anyone has the right to criticise (constructively is preferably but that's not always how life works) because that's what living in democracy is all about. It allows you the freedom to be critical, argue, debate, speak your mind and DISCUSS!
superiorsavior
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Re: Americans are NOT stupid - discuss!

Postby superiorsavior » Wed Mar 12, 2008 8:22 pm

SouthParkSoul wrote:What would the ideal education system be? Take out what you don't like, put in your ideas. Who knows where this could lead.

That's generally how progress happens; Things that don't work are replaced with ideas that do :wink:

Nor does the American system's potential change the fact that, for the past half century, it hasn't been using it.

SouthParkSoul wrote:A compulsory and difficult test to determine who gets into college, and get rid of being able to buy your way into college.

While I'm not wholley opposed to colledge admission tests, they wouldn't sort out the problem of poor but intelligent people not being able to get into Colledge. Poor people would still have to pay to get in, and rich but dumb people could steal places.

SouthParkSoul wrote:Create a national cirriculum so everyone is supposed to be as smart as everyone else.

That's sadly what's happening in the UK, but isn't the fault nor purpose of a national curriculum. I think Kajit shows what a curriculum is *supposed* to do better than i could.

SouthParkSoul wrote:We can't stuff every kid who passes the test into a college, because of space, tuition, and availability of proffesors.

So we should choose the rich (or the black or female or the gay) over the poor (and white and male and strait)? What's your point here?

OH, so sport is a really good indicator of how well you're going to do as a doctor or a lawyer? We mannage to get people who arn't good at sport into colledges in the UK (it's going to become compulsory to go to colledge next year for everyone) so why can't the americans? Are you poorer or less well mannaged than the UK, i think not. We don't look at much besides grades when admitting someone to a top University, even those world class ones like Cambridge (from what my friend who's brother is studying there tells me) and when they do it's what kind of charity work/jobs you've got not what sports you play. So why do you need to look at sports in the US?

SouthParkSoul wrote:The only way you can teach creationalism
(god created the Earth) is to teach every religion's idea of how Earth came to be, including scietific theories.

In England we don't teach Creationism. I went to a church school (cerially it was half in the church and the vicar taucht us RE, including Eastern faiths and Jewdaism :) ) and they didn't se the need to "teach the contreversy" because there is no valid contreversy. There's simply the decendants of bunch of pissed off anti-intilectuals from the 1920's who decided Evolution and the Bible couldn't mix. Genesis can be taught for it's metaphorical and theological meaning, but if a litteral interpritation is nescicary for Christianity the faith would either fail or all of science would need discounting.

That doesn't have anything to do with my point about the American education system though; what i was trying to illustrate was how politically and religiously motivated schools lesson plans are, how faith has crippled three to four generations of potential scientists and how the lack of a national curriculum leads to different schools holding WAY different standards of education (those that teach ID are not going to produce as many great geneticists as those that don't, surely?).



Some of my biggest criticisms don't get a mention from you, such as; that a system of qualifications for each suject rather than a one grade one person system is more specific indicator of what someone knows: that the commercialised nature of the US school system leads to lesson plans based around what companies want not what kids need: and the lack of teachers.
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Bitslapper
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Re: Americans are NOT stupid - discuss!

Postby Bitslapper » Thu Mar 13, 2008 12:42 am

I just found this site and I'm going to have to say I think this is a load of crap. I don't understand half the sh*t that goes on here and the sh*t I do understand is just f*cking retarded. Saying something over and over again doesn't make if funny. What are you doing with your lives!?

I'm a model, and a pretty damn good one at that. I work for a small private company and do contracting work elsewhere. I make an okay living doing nude modeling as well.

Ok, sps I will stay here and help you, but you need to understand that now I'm in charge, okay? You can call me Bitslapper. I'll post a picture every time I post. Peace and Love, all!
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Re: Americans are NOT stupid - discuss!

Postby Big-Will » Thu Mar 13, 2008 4:02 am

...and then you had to go and say you're a furry! :evil: We don't need yer kind of help around here.
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M00ndragon69
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Re: Americans are NOT stupid - discuss!

Postby M00ndragon69 » Thu Mar 13, 2008 7:33 am

Well, the thing about his story about being a furry..He said he had been doing it for 10 years..But at the bottom of that post he had his name, where he lives, and his age. He says he is only 20 years old, so that would mean he started at age 10. That is pretty young to be getting into that sort of thing. You know, if he wants to shock us with those kind of stories, he needs to learn to be a better liar.
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SouthParkSoul
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Re: Americans are NOT stupid - discuss!

Postby SouthParkSoul » Fri Mar 14, 2008 2:05 am

Well, sh*t. I hate asshol3s controlists.
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teh-lolrus
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Re: Americans are NOT stupid - discuss!

Postby teh-lolrus » Sat Mar 15, 2008 12:10 am

M00ndragon69 wrote:Well, the thing about his story about being a furry..He said he had been doing it for 10 years..But at the bottom of that post he had his name, where he lives, and his age. He says he is only 20 years old, so that would mean he started at age 10. That is pretty young to be getting into that sort of thing. You know, if he wants to shock us with those kind of stories, he needs to learn to be a better liar.


Well, some people are just dumbasses, there's no denying that.

Back on topic- I agree with Keejit about the essay based exams. I've been doing my fair share of AP English multiple-choice exam practice questions, and I find those things extremely...how to say it...unfair. English and reading is up to the person's interpretation; the questions are basically testing how students interpret things, not how they are proficient in English. In essence, there is more than one answer (one interpretation) to each question, so to test on that basis... I just don't think it really shows how good the student is at the subject.

Granted, essay based questions are tedious to write (especially under a time limit), but it's better for showing off what a student really knows. On the other hand, it'd take longer to get test results because they'd have to find people to grade it instead of sticking the blasted thing into a machine.
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