I like to think of myself as fairly well-informed on current events, something my old high school history teacher Mr. Nuss would scoff at I’m sure, but I didn’t realize I was this well informed:
According to the Pew “News IQ” Test I score in the 97 percentile along with approximately 3% of the public where as the national average is a pitiful 50%. The site lets you break things down further by gender, educational level, age group, question by question, and demographic by question. It frightens me to think that with just a year and a half of college under my belt I still scored better than people with a college degree (63%). There’s only 12 questions on the test and most of them were pretty softball questions. For that matter, the only reason I did as well as I did was because it was a multiple choice test. If you asked me outright who is chairman of the U.S. Federal Reserve Board I’d probably stammer for a couple of moments while trying to recall his name, but when I see it amongst a list of other possibilities it makes picking it out easy as hell. Only 28% of people knew the correct answer to the question: Since the start of military action in Iraq, about how many U.S. military personnel have been killed? That’s something I’d have guessed everyone knew—they don’t—more people knew the answer to Which of the following recently declared its independence from Serbia (46%) which was the question I figured most folks would get wrong.
The thing is, I’m hardly a news junkie. I get most of mine from a little morning news before work, a little NPR while in the car, and just reading various blogs around the web. I don’t sit around with the TV tuned to CNN all day or with NPR on the radio at work. I have to take most of my news in small chunks so as not to get horribly depressed. Well, I do watch The Daily Show with Jon Stewart on a semi-regular basis (once or twice a week) as he makes it a bit more palatable by pointing out the absurdities, but otherwise I don’t generally tune in to news programs. This explains why I’m so often saying to people: How do you not know that? It’s all over the frickin’ news!
Found via ***Dave who apparently missed one question himself.