DOESN'T THIS BAR SEEM LIKE IT'S SET KINDA LOW?....Atrios points to an article that says that when George Bush applied to the Texas National Guard in 1968 he scored only 25% on the pilot aptitude test, "the lowest acceptable grade."Scary? Let's read the article that was linked. First off, it does not appear that the pilot aptitude test is an IQ test, because Bush has a superior IQ, and in fact, he scored well on a separate component of the overall test that was probably an IQ test:
You only have to score 25% on an aptitude test to get trained as a jet pilot? That's about the equivalent of a combined 700 on the SAT, barely enough to get a football player admitted to a local JC. This is kinda scary considering that — theoretically anyway — these guys might be flying planes in actual combat.
Four months before enlisting, Bush reported at Westover Air Force Base in Massachusetts to take the Air Force Officers Qualification Test. While scoring 25 percent for pilot aptitude – "about as low as you could get and be accepted," according to Martin – and 50 percent for navigator aptitude in his initial testing, he scored 95 percent on questions designed to reflect "officer quality," compared with a current-day average of 88 percent.So, it's not that young Bush was stupid - he wasn't - it was that he didn't do well in whatever "pilot aptitude" was tested. Eyesight? Reflexes? I recall taking a (written) military aptitude test as a teen; it was full of sections of stuff I knew nothing about, like mechanics of engines and radios, presumably there to test for military specialties. But those sections were knowledge tests, not IQ tests. If you don't know something, you can learn it - especially given general intelligence. (The test I took also had the inevitable IQ-test parts, and I am sure I did fine on those.)
It is possible that the pilot aptitude section of Bush's test was an IQ test, and not a knowledge test. But that is unlikely, reading the article. It is also not consistent with his (known) SAT scores, which indicate high intelligence. The "officer quality" score does look like an IQ test.
Second, further down in the article is evidence that Bush turned out to be, in fact, a decent pilot:
In late November, Bush was sent to Moody Air Force Base outside Valdosta, Ga., for year-long undergraduate flight school. Bush impressed fellow trainees with the way he learned to handle a plane... In December 1969, George W. returned to Houston to hone his skills and eventually fly solo on the all-weather F-102, firing its weapons and conducting intercept missions against supersonic targets. He learned with a verve that impressed his superiors, becoming the the first hometown graduate of the 147th's newly established Combat Crew Training School.So, the Post article does not exactly support Drum's reading. This was easy to determine; in fact so easy that I actually did so. And that is the paradigm shift I am talking about. Even 10 years ago on usenet, I would probably not have, i.e., gone to a paper edition of the Post in order to check up on an asserted meaning for a posted story.