A Cosmic Shock
I was visiting a friend last night in the hospital, and he was so fascinated by my company that he switched on the new Cosmos, of which he is a fan.
I had never been a fan of the old Cosmos, since if I want to know about something scientific I go read up on it, assuming it's not locked behind a paywall, and I found Carl Sagan irritating on the few occasions I tuned across the show, although if I'd known at the time he was "the world's biggest pot-head" I might've viewed him more favorably ("Let's see how buzzed Carl is in this episode!"), but I do remember the show as being a respectable attempt to popularize scientific subjects for the non-scientific population, those having attained only a high-school diploma or perhaps a non-scientific bachelor's degree.
What I saw last night was pathetic. I was, quite literally, and with no exaggeration whatsoever, shocked by it. The presentation I saw was geared to what I'd expect would be the apprehension and comprehension of an eighth-grader, if that.
Now, it may be—as a matter of fact, it probably is—the case that the new Cosmos is geared to the most common intellectual level of the American "televisariat", as ascertained by polling or testing.
And if that is the case, the present American intellectual level presents us with a national existential crisis that by far dwarfs our present political and Constitutional crisis, the present plutocracy-corporocracy operating through two-plutocratic-party-system and police-state erected on the ruins of our Constitution.
And if those viewers to which the new Cosmos is geared are all high-school-diploma-holders, then either the standards for obtaining high-school diplomas, which one would reasonably expect to guarantee that those diploma-holders have attained the minimum intellectual properties and procedures needed to be minimally-competent adult citizens, have, or the level of integrity in awarding those diplomas has, been lowered to an astonishing level, or both.
At any rate, this does seem to explain why a passing grade in an ordinary college-freshman-level non-mathematical logic-course has never been and is not being pushed to be required in the "core curriculum" for high-school diplomas:
A huge proportion, perhaps even a majority, of Americans would be unable to pass it.
And these are our present-day voters and jurors.
Our small business-people, once the backbone of our economy, and our soldiers.
And if this state of affairs suits our present plutocracy-corporocracy, as it apparently does, then one must ask just what the intent of that plutocracy-corporocracy is, with regard to the American people, and to America.