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Are you smarter than a 5th grader?


By Yvonne Nyenhuis

Fri, Jan 25th, 2013
Posted in All Commentary

During the Bush administration, Dana Perino was taking questions from reporters. The subject of the Cuban Missile Crisis came up. It turned out Dana had never heard about the installation of nuclear missiles by the Soviet Union on Cuba; the thirteen days in October 1962 in which the world came to the brink of a nuclear war.

How did she get through school without hearing about it and become a spokesperson for the Republican Administration?

During the 2008 election, Sarah Palin was interviewed by Charlie Gibbs. He asked her what she thought of Bush’s Doctrine of Preemption. Sarah was stunned. She froze like a “deer caught in the headlights.” I couldn’t believe it. She was running for Vice President of the United States and didn’t know that it was Bush’s “Doctrine of preemption that took us into war with Iraq!

The 2008 election rolled out a litany of characters.

Sharon Angle, running for Harry Reid’s seat in Nevada, sugested if her party didn’t win by the number of votes, a “Second Amendment” solution might be necessary. She appeared to be advocating revolution in the streets.

Asked her opinion about a thirteen-year-old girl who was pregnant, raped, by her father, she answered, “Two wrongs don’t make a right.” The girl should “make lemonade out of lemons.” She shares the view expressed in the Republican platform where no allowance is made for rape incest or health of the mother.

At the debates we were introduced to the candidates for President.

Rick Santorum believes that the authority of the Bible takes precendent over the Constitution. He sees science as being in conflict with religion and higher education as undermining religious faith.

Herman Cain was ready to solve our tax problems with his 9-9-9 plan. He seemed a bit fuzzy on foreign policy - he became a bit flustered (“ubecky-becky-stan”).

Michele Bachman commented with great feeling how our founding fathers “worked tirelessly to rid this country of slavery.”

I don’t know where she went to school. Didn’t anyone tell her that Washington and Jefferson both owned slaves?

Rick Perry didn’t know how many judges are on the Supreme Court. You would think anyone running for President would know there are nine judges on the Supreme Court.

He also apparently opposed three agencies which he promised to get rid of on becoming President. He told us the first two then forgot the third that he was “absolutely against!”

Gingrich emphasized the importance of morality and family values. He was dating his third wife, while married to his second, during which time he was working to impeach Clinton for infidelity.

Mitt Romney vowed to rescind the Affordable Health Care Law. They all seemed to agree with Romney. “The first thing I’ll do is get rid of Planned Parenthood!” He offered Perry a $1,000 bet.

Ron Paul is for liberty and freedom. He noted the “War on Drugs” has been a failure and suggests we should legalize drugs as we did with alcohol.

He would abolish the Board of Education and cut military spending.

Jon Huntsman was never seriously considered by Republicans as a candidate. He believes in science and global warming. He served under a Democratic President as an ambassador to China. His colleagues consider him a “traitor” to their cause. In the Republican Party, you’re not supposed to put country ahead of party!

My first requirement for candidates for high office is that they know more than I do. My suggestion to improve the vetting process? They should be contestants on Are You Smarter than Fifth Grader?

When Paul Ryan was confronted after a speech in which he lied six times, he announced that his campaign would “not be held hostage by fact checkers.”

John Kyle declared that Planned Parenthood uses 90 percent of its funding for abortions. The actual amount is three percent. (Orin Hatch had the audacity to say it’s 95 percent.)

Republicans seem to feel that if you can’t win with the truth- lie!

The last election was inspiring and exciting because we saw the power of the vote. We learned that we average citizens have a role to play in government. We need to know our representatives and push them to act on our behalf.

We are not helpless. We can move the country forward. As our leaders need to be familiar with the “bones and muscle” of government as they are with the rooms in their house, they should have studied history and geography - have some exposure to science, the environment, finance, economics, and law.

Whatever happened to truth and honesty?

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