Thursday, February 22, 2007

Steyn vs. Bloom's Taxonomy

Once again, Macleans hasn't posted his column online (send me the link if they do). This time he asserts that George Bush recommended a book to him. Additionally Steyn asserts that Bush is very widely read in comparison to "powerful congressional committee chairmen." Which ones Mark? Did you ask all of them? Who are the powerful ones anyway?

Anyway, Bush, in this description asked Steyn if he had read the book. Does this mean that Bush read it? I ask people all the time if they have read books, some of them I have read and I am looking to recommend (as Steyn assumes), in other cases I am looking for a recommendation.

But maybe I'm being too mean to Steyn, maybe he edited down some more revealing detail of the conversation. I don't know that anyone has seriously accused Bush of illiteracy, the reliance of modern political figures on teleprompters means that Bush probably can read without having to sound out too many of the words.

What sets Bush apart and what makes all this alleged reading all the more appalling is that he seems to have learned nothing from it. His war is a mess and there were plenty of historical predictors. I don't even need to say the "V" word either, there was the British experience in Iraq, there was the American experience in the Philippines, the French in Algeria. The planning for Iraq considered none of this. Bush should have done something prior to firing Rummy in 2006. Knowledge is the lowest form of learning (if you believe Bloom). Comprehension, Application, Analysis, Synthesis, Evaluation - all of these are higher levels of learning. Bush may read, I'm not sure that he comprehends.

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