'New math'

President Obama has once again has told us that “better education in math and science is critical to pushing the U.S. forward.” I am sure we can all agree that improving education is a productive and noble endeavor for any society.  We have been told for many years now that American kids are suffering competitively when compared to kids in other nations.  According to Obama, “American students rank 21st in science and 25th in math compared with students around the world.”

Most ‘common sense’ people (aka, flyover country) would immediately question our educational systems and those that are teaching our kids.  The intellectuals big government liberals immediately claim more money is needed.  If money is the leading factor educational performance, why isn’t America at the “top of the class.”  After all, “total educational spending in the US was at 7.4% of GDP in 2004, second highest among OECD countries.”

Since most of us can only look at things from our own experiences, I thought perhaps I was just getting old and my math education was no longer “current”.  I quickly dismissed that theory after realizing that I am 5 years YOUNGER than Obama (at least according to the vast array of  birth documentation floating around for Obama).  Then it came to me like an apple hitting me in the head (pardon the “outdated” reference to Isaac Newton)!

We were told by so many during Obama’s inauguration that he had the power to “lower the seas”, heal the sick, and send tingles down Chris Mathews’ legs.  So I have a theory: perhaps Obama can shift the mathematical laws of nature and create a “New Math”!   I am sure most of you are skeptical, so I will prove my point with a couple of easy illustrations.

Problem #1 –  The number of stars on the American flag equals the number of states.  If the number of stars on the American flag equals 50, how many states are there in the United States?

“Old math” solution: 50 = 50.  There must be 50 states in the United States!

“New math” (Obama math) solution: 50 = 57.  According to Obama math, 50 stars must equal 57 states. (see this for supporting documentation)

Problem #2 –  If Johnny borrows $100 for one year at a 10% annual interest rate, how much interest does he owe at the end of that year?

“Old math” solution: $100 x .10 = $10.  Johnny will owe $10 in interest.

“New math” (Obama math) solution: $100 x .10 = $0.  According to Obama’s “new math”, Johnny will owe ZERO dollars in interest.  I realize that this one is a little more abstract, but I call your attention to the recent White House debt reduction “strategy” where the Administration is not counting interest payments as a budget “cost”.

A cursory search of the internet will reveal many more examples of these “new math” principles coming out of the Obama Administration (i.e., stimulus job creation numbers, unemployment rates, etc.).  Finding myself on the precipice of discovery, I was very excited and ready to tell the whole world that Barack Hussein Obama will go down in history as one of world’s greatest mathematicians.

After the euphoria wore off, I returned to my usual, analytical self and began to reexamine this “new math” under a more critical eye.  My conclusion: Obama’s education is sorely lacking and he should take some of that money he wants for education and hire a tutor.   HINT: don’t look to Wisconsin for a mathematics teacher.