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Tue May 22, 2012, 10:41 AM

Congressional speeches drop a grade

Source: UPI

WASHINGTON, May 22 (UPI) -- Speeches by members of U.S. Congress have dropped by nearly a full grade level since 2005, a Sunlight Foundation analysis indicated.

Today's Congress speaks at about a 10.6 grade level -- a high school sophomore year -- down from a high of 11.5 -- a high school junior level -- in 2005, the analysis released Monday indicated.

The U.S. Constitution is written at a 17.8 grade level, the Federalist Papers at a 17.1 grade level and the Declaration of Independence at a 15.1 grade level.



Read more: http://www.upi.com/Top_News/US/2012/05/22/Congressional-speeches-drop-a-grade/UPI-60331337688370/?spt=hs&or=tn

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Reply Congressional speeches drop a grade (Original post)
Viva_La_Revolution May 2012 OP
truthisfreedom May 2012 #1
Turbineguy May 2012 #2
mlevans May 2012 #3
Turbineguy May 2012 #4
MurrayDelph May 2012 #5
lookingfortruth May 2012 #6
LibDemAlways May 2012 #7
SunSeeker May 2012 #9
thesquanderer May 2012 #8
ut oh May 2012 #10
freedom fighter jh May 2012 #11
SomeGuyInEagan May 2012 #12
Posteritatis May 2012 #14
SomeGuyInEagan May 2012 #16
PSPS May 2012 #13
former9thward May 2012 #15
hrmjustin May 2012 #17

Response to Viva_La_Revolution (Original post)

Tue May 22, 2012, 10:45 AM

1. Bwahahahahaha!

And as long as boehner is at the helm, the republican boat will continue to crash on the rocks of junior high school-level writing.

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Response to truthisfreedom (Reply #1)

Tue May 22, 2012, 11:04 AM

2. It won't be long before a speech will consist of:

"Why Pay More?"

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Response to Turbineguy (Reply #2)

Tue May 22, 2012, 11:11 AM

3. Not sure that's actually the bottom though.

I suspect in future we'll have to try and interpret a series of squeals and grunts.

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Response to mlevans (Reply #3)

Tue May 22, 2012, 11:12 AM

4. Ugh huh...

You are probably correct.

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Response to Turbineguy (Reply #2)

Tue May 22, 2012, 11:51 AM

5. They already at the point of

"I know you are, but what am I?"

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Response to Viva_La_Revolution (Original post)

Tue May 22, 2012, 12:00 PM

6. This is a sad and scary situation. It also explains half the stupidity of the last 8 years- 15 years

 

The other half is Scum taking advantage of this sad piece of information and using it to destroy the country.


It is clear that our Lawmakers and the public in general do not understand the basic concepts and principles this nation was founded on BUT we as a society allow ourselves to be dumb down more. Look at the "Popular shows" on TV ALMOST all of them are Reality "drama stage" crap (Yes, I will admit I do watch some reality shows once in a while. Such as Top Chef or Hell's Kitchen or even Project Runway. Maybe I am a hypocrite to think the Level of Reality show like Top Chef or Project Runway is at a better level than say RICH HOUSE WIVES OF ____ and Survivor)

Look at England. Doctor Who is probably-and in my humble opinion- is one of the best written shows around today and it is considered FAMILY PROGRAMMING.

People complain that Family Guy and American Dad are Crude and stupid WHEN in reality those shows are holding a mirror up to society and basically showing us our decent into mad Rabbit hole of a ride.

I have nieces and nephews who are ranging in age between 18 and 1 years old and I was shocked this pass Christmas when I hand my eleven year old niece the first Harry Potter book and she had trouble reading the first paragraph because it was "ABOVE HER GRADE LEVEL" reading wise and when I saw her text books for her classes (MIND you she is honor roll in her school) I was shocked. School are too busy teaching these kids how to pass a stupid test instead of teaching them the skills and tools needed not only to past these "standardized test" but to help them develop logic and deductive reasoning skills.

Of course I know Corporate America does not want a work force that is going to demand humane treatment and pay. They want people to be mindless workers for min pay.

This should be a wake up call but it won't be.

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Response to Viva_La_Revolution (Original post)

Tue May 22, 2012, 12:02 PM

7. No doubt a result of the idiots the R's are sending there. n/t

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Response to LibDemAlways (Reply #7)

Tue May 22, 2012, 12:11 PM

9. Yes, the R's think "You lie!" is a thoughtful riposte.

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Response to Viva_La_Revolution (Original post)

Tue May 22, 2012, 12:09 PM

8. Extreme members are the worst?

more moderate members of both parties speak at the highest grade levels, with the most extreme members speaking at the lowest grade levels


That's a little ambiguous... are there any extreme liberals? I guess about the closest is Bernie Sanders, he seems to speak well...

They do say "this is most pronounced among freshmen and sophomore members" and there certainly aren't many freshman Democrats in the House (and no "extremists" I can think of), so almost by definition, extreme freshmen have to be Republicans.

And they do say that the five worst are all Republicans.

But I do think that framing was odd, implying at first that it applies equally to both parties, but the more you read, the less that seems to be so. Almost like going out of their way to appear even-handed in a situation where the two sides aren't equal. Gee, where have we seen that before? At this point I even hate the phrase "mainstream media" (as it has become conservative code for anything that isn't right-wing), but I am getting so tired at the MM's reliance on false equivalency...

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Response to thesquanderer (Reply #8)

Tue May 22, 2012, 03:33 PM

10. I agree....

I think this is another case of the MSM attempting to create a sort of parity between the Tea Partiers and 'supposed' liberals on the 'other side'.

Can't paint the GOP as the ones dumbing down Congress all by themselves... It might piss off Rush...

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Response to Viva_La_Revolution (Original post)

Tue May 22, 2012, 03:39 PM

11. I doubt that it means much.

The test they use, the Flesch-Kincaid test -- is based on word length and sentence length. The longer the words and the sentences, the higher the score.

A higher score doesn't necessarily mean a better speech. Big words and long sentences are hard to understand (thus the high grade level), but that doesn't mean they say anything. It is harder to state things clearly and simply than to use a lot of big words and long sentences.

This could even mean Congress is improving -- maybe they're a little less highfalutin and full of themselves than they used to be.

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Response to Viva_La_Revolution (Original post)

Tue May 22, 2012, 03:43 PM

12. Meh. A well-communicated idea does not rely on multi-syllabic words.

Rather, it depends on well-chosen, precise language. Crafting a short, coherent sentence with meaning requires skill and is accessible by more people who hear it (and is more likely to be used in news bites on radio and television).

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Response to SomeGuyInEagan (Reply #12)

Tue May 22, 2012, 07:34 PM

14. The sound-bite format is kind of part of the problem, not something to aspire towards. (nt)

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Response to Posteritatis (Reply #14)

Tue May 22, 2012, 11:56 PM

16. Part of the reason Republicans have what power they do have ...

... is because they understand language and how to use it (and twist it), which includes crafting a message to reach as many people as possible. The reality is that most people get their news from bites and blurbs on the radio and television (if they bother getting news at all). Newspapers have been losing readers for decades. News magazines are in trouble. That is the sad, pathetic reality.

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Response to Viva_La_Revolution (Original post)

Tue May 22, 2012, 06:49 PM

13. Another interesting observation...

If you look around on the intertubes, it's easy to find essays (often scanned images of the written piece) written by school children from the early 20th century. One thing they have in common is the use of language and coherence that you would never find today.

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Response to Viva_La_Revolution (Original post)

Tue May 22, 2012, 08:36 PM

15. This is an unfortunate trend in American politics.

This year's State of the Union speech by President Obama was given at an eighth grade level. That is dismaying given how good of a speaker he is. http://blog.lib.umn.edu/cspg/smartpolitics/2012/01/my_message_is_simple_obamas_so.php

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Response to Viva_La_Revolution (Original post)

Wed May 23, 2012, 12:03 AM

17. Oh no I did not mean to speak in congress again.

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