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ECH1969 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 09:24 AM
Original message
60% of Americans can't find Iraq on a map
One-third of respondents couldn't pinpoint Louisiana on a map and 48 percent were unable to locate Mississippi.

Two-thirds didn't know that the earthquake that killed 70,000 people in October 2005 occurred in Pakistan.

Six in 10 could not find Iraq on a map of the Middle East.

While Israeli-Palestinian strife has been in the news for the entire lives of the respondents, 75 percent were unable to locate Israel on a map of the Middle East.

http://www.breitbart.com/news/2006/05/02/D8HBMF5O0.html
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NMDemDist2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 09:25 AM
Response to Original message
1. pitiful n/t
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bdamomma Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 09:26 AM
Response to Original message
2. geez, this is shameless
people are so blind to know what is going on around them. very sad, thus the dumbing down of Americans continue.
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rkc3 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 09:26 AM
Response to Original message
3. It will get better when NCLB has run its course
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Tempest Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 09:26 AM
Response to Original message
4. Only 13% of high school seniors could find Iraq on a map
The survey of seniors was taken just before the start of the Iraq war.

It may have included juniors as well.
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timber84 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 09:26 AM
Response to Original message
5. you gotta be kidding. I bet they can find Disneyworld!
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The Magistrate Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 09:27 AM
Response to Original message
6. It Has Been Well Said, Sir
"War is how Americans learn geography."
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hobbit709 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 09:27 AM
Response to Original message
7. And the Kool-ade drinkers
can't count past ten with their shoes on.
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ComerPerro Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 09:28 AM
Response to Original message
8. What kind of map?
Seriously, I think it seems relevant...

A map of the entire world? Are countries labled? What size?

If someone didn't know where to start, it would be a challenge...
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ECH1969 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 09:29 AM
Response to Reply #8
10. Countries borders were labeled, but the countries themselves were not
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ComerPerro Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 10:03 AM
Response to Reply #10
28. That might be difficult
I'm lazy and don't want to open the article and read it.

Did it give any indication of how far off people were?


By that, I mean, if someone pointed to, say, Iran, is that as bad as someone pointing to Australia?
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incapsulated Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 01:16 PM
Response to Reply #28
44. Not really...
Edited on Tue May-02-06 01:17 PM by incapsulated
This is how geography is learned, why we did map outlines in school as children. You are supposed to be able to tell were states and countries are by which continent they are on and then the shape and location of the state or country on that continent. Details like rivers make it easier, I don't know if that was included, but they should be able to find a state in their own country for chrissakes! This is just ignorance, period.

I'm good at geography (not because of schooling, which I found dull and forgot) because my interest in the world made me a person who liked to look at and study maps. People in the US are very provincial and don't have much curiosity about the world around them.
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reality based Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 09:28 AM
Response to Original message
9. It's over there by Benladinya, or one of them other commonist
countries, ain't it?
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stop the bleeding Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 09:29 AM
Response to Original message
11. I wouldn't be surprised if the same people can't find their own state
Edited on Tue May-02-06 09:30 AM by stop the bleeding
They only know Jesusland and Dumbfuckistan
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ClintonTyree Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 09:37 AM
Response to Reply #11
19. Oh, you mean this map.
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stop the bleeding Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 09:55 AM
Response to Reply #19
26. yep that is the one - thank you n/t
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bdamomma Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 01:20 PM
Response to Reply #19
45. that classification
is on target!!!!
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jsamuel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 09:29 AM
Response to Original message
12. pssst... answers here...
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bikebloke Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 09:35 AM
Response to Reply #12
15. I feel dumb..
I always thought Georgia was next to South Carolina. ;-)

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seabeyond Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 09:32 AM
Response to Original message
13. what happened in pakistan in oct 2005
answer 70k died in an earthquake. i wouldnt have been able to come up with that one. i knew about it. but would just float out of brain as answer.

finding the countries? i am politically active so i know, otherwise i dont know that i would. war with iraq brought me to pulling out the map and studying it. and all the little countries involved, but that info comes and goes in my brain. i look often for reminders location

the united states, pathetic. my niece and her friend as sophmores proudly said one day, dont know where new mexico is (we live in texas) and dont remember which is a part of u.s. new mexico or mexico. my then 8 year old and 5 year old were amazed at their ignorance and attitude of thinking it was cute.
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ClintonTyree Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 09:34 AM
Response to Original message
14. My god, I live in a country filled with morons.
Every time I step out of my house I'm painfully aware of how ignorant our society is. These are the same people who thought george bush was a great guy (still is to some of them) and a fantastic leader. :eyes:
I have a very low threshold when it comes to stupidity. Sometimes I'm not quite sure if breathing is an involuntary function for them, that they may forget. :eyes: This is the what the Republicans love though, this is their "base". Stupid and easily lead.
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_testify_ Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 10:30 AM
Response to Reply #14
35. You'll be sick when you hear this
My company hired a young man who had moved here from South Africa. (He was white.) When he came by our office to fill out paperwork, our office manager asked me where he was from. I recognized the accent as either Dutch or Afrikaner, so I told her so. She gave me a blank look, so I repeated myself. She told me he must be Dutch then, because there are no white people in Africa. I was floored - I quizzed her on her knowledge of the region and she:

A) Had no idea what apartheid is,
B) Was unaware of the difference between Africa the continent and S.Africa the country
C) Conceded there might be whites in Africa, but they were probably "all scientists" (I'm guessing she was referring to anthropologists?)

I pretty much stopped talking to her after that.
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bdamomma Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 01:25 PM
Response to Reply #14
46. that is why the rest of world
calls us stupid americans. we are so out of tune with everything, (excluding present company).
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Nicholas D Wolfwood Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 09:35 AM
Response to Original message
16. Not. Surprised. At all.
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Norquist Nemesis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 09:35 AM
Response to Original message
17. Can't find it, but they know it's "over there instead of over here" n/t
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E-Z-B Donating Member (438 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 09:37 AM
Response to Original message
18. If geography isn't on the standardized tests that the No Child Left Behind
Act calls for, then teachers are less likely to teach it now.

Yup, Dubya has fuccked up the entire school system.
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ClintonTyree Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 09:40 AM
Response to Reply #18
20. Nope, bush's plan..........
teaches them everything they need to know to "pass the test". If it's not on "the test" it doesn't get taught. Who needs all of that worthless information anyway? :sarcasm:
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treestar Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 09:41 AM
Response to Original message
21. Not surprising, and they probably aren't even the least bit
embarrassed - it's not America, so it doesn't count.

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TahitiNut Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 09:42 AM
Response to Original message
22. (Gads!) When I was about 5 years old in the late 40s, I could locate ...
... about 90-95% of the world's countries on a globe my grandfather had, and I knew about 50% of the capitol cities. It's not so much that I was precocious - it was regarded by my family as basic knowledge. My family had NO college graduates. My grandfather was a Norwegian immigrant with only a 4th grade formal education. He was a blue collar worker - a skilled machinist. This was BASIC knowledge.
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treestar Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 09:47 AM
Response to Reply #22
24. Nowadays there all these talking computerized boards
- shows how much good they do. My nephews had a globe - you could take these computerized tests with this globe and it would tell you the capitals of every country and all kinds of other information.

They probably have too much information. The textbooks kids have now are positively confusing to look at and impossible to read, there is so much colorful junk and side articles you can't concentrate.

You probably were more likely to learn it just looking at the globe and learning the rest for yourself.



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dipsydoodle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 10:02 AM
Response to Reply #22
27. We're about the same age I guess
I was fine until they started changing the names in Africa. I still refer to N & S Rhodesia, Tanganyika, Nyasaland and the Gold Coast. Apart from that life was a lot simpler when it was just the USSR.
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karlrschneider Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 10:11 AM
Response to Reply #27
31. Not only Africa...Burma, Ceylon, Cambodia, East Pakistan
to name a few off the top of my head have all been changed since I was in school. At least I know the 'new' names, though. Sheesh.
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TahitiNut Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 10:14 AM
Response to Reply #31
33. Yep. Siam and Formosa, too.
:shrug:
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karlrschneider Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 11:52 AM
Response to Reply #33
38. Forgot Formosa but I think Thailand was already Thailand
when I was in skool. ;-)

I'm a oldphart but not quite that old...
:D
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TahitiNut Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 01:05 PM
Response to Reply #38
41. It was called Siam until 1939. The back-and-forth name change ...
Edited on Tue May-02-06 01:09 PM by TahitiNut
... was based on the overthrow of the hereditary monarchy, both by the Japanese and subsequently a military dictatorship. The name 'Thailand' was thus first associated with (and sponsored by) militarism and geographers varied in their acceptance and recognition of the name ... which didn't really 'stabilize' until the 50s. Growing up in a middle-class blue collar family in the 40s, our globe and atlases were pre-WW2.

(It took somewhat longer to change the name of 'The Gulf of Siam' to 'The Gulf of Thailand.')

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karlrschneider Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 04:03 PM
Response to Reply #41
51. I was born in 42 and of course recall the name Siam from childhood
but pretty sure I knew of the Thai change by jr high years. Probably because we got such a Bang (as it were) out of the capital's name. :D
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dipsydoodle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 12:12 PM
Response to Reply #33
39. To you and Karl............
I abbreviated my list. I wouldn't betting we all collected stamps when we were kids :)

Can be get quite nostalgic when I find an elderlie world atlas with all of the original names from the days of the empire and the colonies . Did you know that America's original name on the first map was Merica . I forget why the A was added before the map was printed - something to do with masculine/feminine in another language : Portugese or Italian I think..
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TahitiNut Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 10:12 AM
Response to Reply #27
32. Fer sure. I still think "Belgian Congo."
I also remember when the globe was imprinted with "unexplored" in parts of Africa and South America.
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Toucano Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 09:47 AM
Response to Original message
23. Draft their little asses.
They'll figure it out.
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noamnety Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 09:49 AM
Response to Original message
25. I admit, it's bad. BUT
Being able or not being able to find a country on a map isn't the main thing that concerns me.

Understanding the politics of the situations in those countries is more important. I'd rather have students that know what happened in the Gulf of Tonkin than students that can find it on a map.

I'm not claiming that people are smarter than the test shows, just to be clear. I'm trying to say that even if 100% of Americans could find Iraq on a map, that's not necessarily a good indicator of their actual intelligence on the issues related to Iraq. That focus on memorized facts without meaning is a pet peeve of mine when it comes to standardized testing and education.
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SmokingJacket Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 01:59 PM
Response to Reply #25
50. I know what you mean, but...
it's not an either or thing. If they get Iran and Iraq switched around on a map, it's not a big deal, and if they can explain the long history of the two countries' antagonism toward each other, well, that's much more important.

However... you do have to know that the countries border each other to understand what's going on.

It may not seem important to know where Louisiana is on a map, but if you don't understand that it's on the Gulf of Mexico and that it's at the mouth of the Mississippi River, then you don't really have a CLUE why New Orleans flooded and what might be done about it and who or what to blame.

In my Ideal School that I'm going to start one day, kids would learn to identify places on maps as BACKGROUND for understanding history and politics -- memorizing facts would not be the end goal, but they would definitely be learned. You can do both critical thinking and rote learning -- they complement each other!

Or as I like to say, you can't think critically if you don't know anything to think critically about...
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karlrschneider Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 10:05 AM
Response to Original message
29. I'm appalled but completely unsurprised.
:grr:
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tanyev Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 10:11 AM
Response to Original message
30. 32% can't find their ass with both hands.
Backwash.
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onager Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 10:16 AM
Response to Original message
34. It has always been this way.
Edited on Tue May-02-06 10:21 AM by onager
And every generation gets a chance to be appalled at how stoopid 'Merican kids r today...

I read a lot of military history myself, and one book made the point that the govt. in WWII was actually worried at how little geography Americans knew...especially since they were about to go to places they'd never heard of and get shot at.

The troops going to Europe were in marginally better shape than the ones slated for the Pacific. Not many people knew where the hell anything was west of Hawaii.

If you were an average American civilian in 1942, you'd probably never heard of Wake Island or Midway unless you had stopped there while flying on one of the fantastic Pan Am Clippers. And you would have only done that if you were a very rich American or a senior military officer.

But how about Guadalcanal, Peleliu, Papua New Guinea and Iwo Jima? Not exactly household words and all the sites of horrific battles.

Even the govt. was in the dark about some of this real estate, and had to rely on the memories of people like construction workers and missionaries.

Oh, maybe this will make you feel better about the whole thing:

A test administered in 1915 and 1916 to hundreds of high school and college students who were about to face World War I found that they did not know what happened in 1776 and confused Thomas Jefferson with Jefferson Davis.

A 1943 test showed that only a quarter of college students could name two contributions made by either Jefferson or Abraham Lincoln, leading historian Allan Nevins to fret that such a historically illiterate bunch might be a liability on the battlefields of Europe in World War II.

And still, Americans won both wars, and many of the 1943 students who said the United States purchased Alaska from the Dutch and Hawaii from Norway were later lionized in books, movies and television as "the Greatest Generation."


http://ed.stanford.edu/suse/news-bureau/displayRecord.p...
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slaveplanet Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 10:33 AM
Response to Original message
36. I wouldn't call them stupid
It's just that their hard-drives are filled with pop trivia.

Those people that missed those questions, can name obscure sports stats from the 1960's, know the complete history of Brittney Spears or just about any hollywood star(including their political views), With amazing speed they can whip out a Bible quote for any situation they run across and they can tell you what type of tires Jeff Gordon uses on the roundy round.
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incapsulated Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 01:48 PM
Response to Reply #36
49. Exactly, Americans aren't stupid...
Edited on Tue May-02-06 01:48 PM by incapsulated
We just have a anti-intellectual streak. It is cultural. If you go back far enough, that wasn't the case, but then we still had a society that was strongly influenced by European backgrounds. Knowledge and education were valued. Reading civil war letters between ordinary soldiers and their families will amaze anyone who has an appreciation of the english language. We weren't distracted by the media, then. We were, by necessity, a more literate people. Now we have all the information in the world at our fingertips... but aren't interested in much outside our own hobbies and obsessions.





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catmandu57 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 10:47 AM
Response to Original message
37. My wife bless her heart
A couple of years ago we were on vacation through the Southwestern US, we stopped for a few days in New Mexico, later she asked me how come we weren't stopped at the border.
I thought I would die laughing, then I explained that since New Mexico was a state of the Union we could come and go there whenever we wanted.
This coming from a woman who has been educated very liberally in the last 21 years. I guess I haven't done as good a job as I thought.
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phusion Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 12:16 PM
Response to Reply #37
40. haha
A lot of people think we live in another country down here...

In fact we have mock passports for NM residents:
http://www.newmexicopassport.com /

:)
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DanCa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 01:06 PM
Response to Original message
42. But do they know that the opposite of brown is purple (nt) ?
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kittenpants Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 01:08 PM
Response to Original message
43. But they sure know Iraq was responsible for 9/11!
somebody kill me
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Behind the Aegis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 01:27 PM
Response to Original message
47. Test your Geography Knowledge
http://www.lizardpoint.com/fun/geoquiz/index.html

This is a fun site. It seems to be slow to load today, though.
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karlrschneider Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 04:40 PM
Response to Reply #47
52. Nice...I'm embarrassed I did poorly on Mexico and Africa.
And I think on the Canada quiz there wasn't really a clickable spot for PEI. Oh well...
;-)
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Behind the Aegis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 04:57 PM
Response to Reply #52
53. Africa is pretty difficult...
...I did OK on most. It is the newer countries that I got mixed up. Hell, there were two I hadn't heard of until I took the test... :blush:
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Selatius Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-02-06 01:27 PM
Response to Original message
48. Our bombs find Iraq pretty well, though n/t
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