Public Suspiciously Well-Informed

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We most often hear about public opinion polls that make Americans seem like blithering idiots who are lucky to get through the day without tripping over their own stupidity: More people can name a Jonas Brother than a Supreme Court Justice! A shocking percentage don’t know which party controls Congress! They believe in UFOs!

So it’s only right to highlight this new Pew Research Center survey that finds Americans well-informed about the financial crisis. Suspiciously well-informed. Seriously–58% know that Tim Geithner is the Treasury Secretary? That’s name i.d. that some presidential wannabes would kill for. More than seven in ten know that China is the foreign country that holds the most U.S. government debt. A majority (53%) correctly estimated the unemployment rate at 8%.

Pat yourselves on the back, Americans–the economy may be in a death spiral, but you know exactly how bad it is! You can take the quiz yourself here (pretend I didn’t just give you three of the answers above).