Who’s Keener on Current Events?

The pro-Republican results of the Pew Research Poll, “What Does the Public Know?,” (h/t) has led to some “rah rah” chatter on the right side of the blogosphere, partly inspired because the MSM isn’t covering the results the same as they did previous polls showing opposite results. True enough, self-identified Republicans performed better than Democrats. Here’s the snapshot:

What I’d like to point out, though, is that INDEPENDENTS also did better on most questions than DEMOCRATS. I wonder if this is a reflection of the Democrats recent political success. Have a portion of the Democratic voting electorate “checked out” from current events in the belief that “their guys/gals” will handle it? Does this reflect a hangover effect amongst the younger-skewing Democratic co-hort? More:

Overall, Americans ages 50 and older answered an average of 5.8 questions correctly, while those younger than age 30 answered an average of just four questions. College graduates got the highest scores among all of the groups analyzed (7.1 correct answers), while those with some college education averaged 5.3 correct answers and those with a high school education or less got 4.2 right.
Republicans and independents each averaged 5.7 correct answers, compared with five correct among Democrats. Men correctly answered an average of 5.9 of the 12 items; women answered an average of 4.7.

So, reading these results (warning: potential non-PC content!!!) it looks like that, on average, the most knowledgeable person is a 50+ year old Republican or independent man with a college education. The least knowledgeable is an under-30, Democratic woman with a high school education (or less). That is, generally speaking, of course!!!

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14 years ago

Wow. I just got all of them right, before I read the report. That puts me in the top 2%.
And by the way, I’m an independent, socially-liberal fiscally-conservative moderate, 27 years old.
I do have to say that if you just watch the ‘regular news’, there’s no way you’d get this information. Even the wackiest conservative talk radio goes over the facts more than your typical primetime or late-night news. If you want to have a reasonable base of facts, you should be listening to either conservative talk radio (and filter-out the crazy) or NPR and BBC (and also filter out the occasional hidden slant).
Wow. We’re doomed. 🙂

Steve A
Steve A
14 years ago

It’s a sad commentary that the numbers aren’t higher in all columns. These are likely the people going to vote and a good portion have no idea. Do you pull the lever of the guy with the most signs on the road?

14 years ago

Steve A: Yes, the most signs wins, or the one with the right party wins as we’ve seen actually connecting more than one line is a challenge for many in RI.
I’ve long said that I don’t want to refuse anyone the right to vote, but to me, you should have to name just one candidate in a race to be able to vote for that race. Tell me who’s running for Governor, say “Caprio” and yes, you can vote in that race. Tell me who’s running for state senate in your district, give no answer and you don’t get to vote. If you can’t even name a single person in the race, you shouldn’t be allowed to vote in it. You can’t get any more uninformed than that.
As for propositions, even a single word with something to do with a prop is good enough. “Gambling” would have been good enough, “bridges”, “museum”, any of those would have been fine for recent referenda.

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