Not much has changed since 1922 when H. L. Mencken described the United States as "the commonwealth of morons." The majority of Americans are under-educated, pathetically misinformed, generally lacking critical thinking skills, and apparently incapable of fact-based analysis. Indeed, American ignorance about current events, their own culture, history and government, as well as international current events, cultures and history, is well documented. For further evidence, simply talk to your neighbors, read comments on political blogs or listen to call-ins on talk radio. You will be astounded and even frightened.
In addition to being uninformed and incapable of connecting the dots, many Americans actually take pride in their ignorance and lack of civility. Currently we are subjected to the unmitigated ignorance of "birther" morons and former vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin making the ludicrous assertion that health care proposals include a "death panel." The media whores on television and braying jackasses on talk radio actually report these inanities as newsworthy of serious discussion.
Meanwhile, organized right wing efforts disrupt attempts at informed health care discussion by Democratic members of Congress with their home constituencies. These disruptions are supported by many Republicans and receive financial support from the health care industry. The spittle-screaming thugs at recent town meetings are reminiscent of the goose stepping brown shirts in the latter days of the WeimarRepublic.
Anti-intellectualism, Bible thumping ignorance and thuggish behaviors have become patriotic hallmarks. Anyone who is reasonably educated, reasonably informed and behaves in a reasonably civilized manner is branded an elitist.
In the 1980s voters agreed with Reagan that "government is the problem" and entrusted their jobs, homes, health, retirement and future of their children to corporate America. The overturning of the Glass-Steagall Act and other government regulations transformed the corporate exploitation of America in the 1980s and 1990s into the savage rape of the 21st century.