Friday, 8 June 2012


I find it amazing that in the country that gave us so many inventions and made so many discoveries there exists a political party that despises the intellectual elites and seems hellbent on dismantling the public school system.

The GOP presidential candidates pandered to religious extremist groups which encourage teaching creationism as science and repudiate the theory of evolution. They're suspicious of science and scientists.

Ironically, they like to remind us of American exceptionalism, but not for the countless remarkable achievements over the past few centuries. No, it seems that to them, America is exceptional in the sense of shoving "democracy" down people's throats, invading and manipulating other countries.

Ignorance and vulgarity are glorified. Television is full of inane programs that show people at their worst. Political pundits spout idiocies every single day. Dumbing down is rapidly accelerating.

Where would we be without the things on the following list, all invented or discovered by Americans? The people who dedicated their lives to make our lives better are now despised as belonging to some mythical, evil elite, as if being curious and innovative were cardinals sins.

There's so much to make any American proud, yet the GOP chooses to massage the egos of people who are proud to proclaim that the only book they've ever read is the bible.

Here's a very short list of American achievements and I would like to thank and pay tribute to the truly exceptional people who made all these things part of our everyday lives.

Morse code
Combine harvester
Circuit breaker
Medical glove
Safety razor
Hearing aid
Windshield wiper (invented by a woman)
Pop-up toaster
Iron lung
Microwave oven
Carbon dating
Correction fluid ( a woman again)
Air bags
Heart-lung machine
Video tape
Integrated circuit
Personal computer
Computer mouse
Pocket calculators
Heimlich manoeuvre
Digital camera
Lunar module
Space shuttle
Wheeled luggage
Nicotine patch
Vitamins A, B, E and many others
Several life-saving antibiotics
DNA structure
Polio Vaccine

And many, many other things we take for granted.