The nation is already accustomed to watching “reality shows” where ordinary folk — their foibles and failures — are served up as entertainment. And we’re already comfortable with an idea of separate standards for the elite folk who fly private jets to global warming conferences and the rest of us, who are meant to stay home and hang out the wash.

So, these two headlines crawling across my twitter timeline, one right behind the other, did not surprise me at all:

1) Most Literate City is Washington DC: well, that’s not really surprising. People with degrees from good schools (who have both connections and student loans) need to go where the jobs are, and our expanding government has created lots of excellent-paying jobs with good benefits. Lots of bureaucrats need to be put in place to oversee and enforce all of the new rules-for-little-people being signed into law.

2) California No Longer Requiring Eight Graders to Take Algebra. The reasoning is, the kids can’t do it, aren’t ready for it, particularly minority kids. So, rather than find ways to help bring them up to speed, let’s just make it easier, and deliver the message that we don’t expect much from them, anyway.