As far back as Plato, a cherished idea among philosophers and reformers is that people only do wrong out of ignorance. If we really got it, presumably, we wouldn't act badly.
The European Enlightenment was based on the idea that the spread of education and knowledge would eliminate most social evils. To be fair, that has happened, sort of. We don't literally burn as many witches and heretics as they used to anyhow.
But reason isn't a cure all, as Reinhold Niebuhr argues in Moral Man and Immoral Society. While acknowledging its very real contributions to social betterment, Niebuhr points out that
Men will not cease to be dishonest, merely because their dishonesties have been revealed or because they have discovered their own deceptions. Wherever men hold unequal power in society, they will use whatever means are most convenient to that end and will seek to justify them by the most plausible arguments they are able to devise...
...Men will never be wholly reasonable, and the proportion of reason to impulse becomes increasingly negative when we proceed from the life of individuals to that of social groups...
Those are some reasons why we shouldn't have unreasonable expectations about reason.
ALL GONE. Many jobs lost in the recession won't be coming back.
COLLEGE GRADUATES are facing higher unemployment rates.
FIZZLING OUT. The drying up of Recovery Act aid to states could worsen the recession and harm state budgets and education. Meanwhile, WV has been slow in spending its share.
APPLES AND ORANGES. Here's Paul Krugman on the difference between the situation in Greece and the US.
THE WORLD'S STRONGEST ANIMAL (FOR ITS SIZE) is the copepod.
GOAT ROPE ADVISORY LEVEL: ELEVATED