No, we are getting smarter all the time.
I'm too stupid to answer this question.
"He who does not think himself worth saving from poverty and ignorance by his own efforts, will hardly be thought worth the efforts of anybody else." -- Frederick Douglass, Self-Made Men (1872)
Skepticism is increasing, which I view as a positive development. Folks are slowly but surely learning how to challenge their own programming, and they are much less likely to accept a mental virus without question just because it brings emotional comfort. However, progress is uneven, and there are still powerful forces in society promoting mental rigidity.
On the negative side, we are awash in extraordinarily low quality content (by some measures), and separating the wheat from the chaff becomes ever more time consuming.
You might be interested in the Flynn effect:
[ame=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flynn_effect]Flynn effect - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia[/ame]
"I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies." - Thomas Jefferson, 1802
Hell yes. Not ALL humans, of course. The small percentage of people with a working brain are doing wonders for society. But the average human is getting dumber.
Wow. Am I awesome or what?
I think common sense is circling the drain pretty quickly these days.
And too many people bend over backwards to accomodate those that nature would snuff out naturally, because they lack common sense to preserve their lives / well being.
George Washington didn't use his freedom of speech to win the war with Britain... He shot them.
Why? It's largely due to government-run education. In so called "public" schools, children are being taught to accept unconstitutional government actions and be good little serfs for the state.
They are being taught that slavery is wrong (of course), BUT at the same time, they are being taught that government is the master and not the servant of the people.
Want proof? Just look at the multitudes of abusive laws and regulations we have now, and more are on the way.
And yes, higher taxes to pay for them.
From a evolutionary standpoint, generational differences in size and life span are a fact. All species evolve over time. Combined with better nutrition and health care, we are now beginning to tap into the deepest realms of human potential. Human nature revolves around "pushing" the boundaries, the unknown, essentially seeking to diverge the deepest meanings of life. The greater amount of people attempting to breakthrough perceived barriers, the greater the frequency of these occurrences. And we are living longer
The Flynn Effect is a wonderful read for those who are interested in IQ scores.
It is not very unreasonable that the rich should contribute to the public expense, not only in proportion to their revenue, but something more than in that proportion.
"Wealth of Nations," Book V, Chapter II, Part II, Article I, pg.911
There is a popular Chinese maxim: "The hat is good, the shoes are good. However, if you put the hat on your feet, and the shoes on your head, then both become useless."
I picked no even though my views are a little different.
I believe that if by humans you mean the scientists hard at work finding cures, exploring miniature cells, researching the human mind, or studying the stars, we are getting much smarter.
However, if by humans you mean the average man, we are staying relatively as informed if not getting dumber. Half of the population is getting extremely cynical while the other half is becoming gullible.
"All mankind is of one author, and is one volume; when one man dies, one chapter is not torn out of the book, but translated into a better language...No man is an island, entire of itself...any man's death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind; and therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee." - John Donne
Yes they are -- for two reasons:
1. The lower and less intelligent people are outbreeding the more civilized and more intelligent people.
2. Government-run education.
I would imagine intelligence was the ability to think for ourselves. Generally speaking intelligence also involves getting an education as it is very hard to be able to have ideas on things we know nothing about!!
I would have thought that on the level of education we are now at the least dumb in societies history.
We also no longer live by such strict social codes that the ability to think is curtailed by social sanctions.
We ought on this to be the most advanced and least dumb we have ever been.
However, we do as people have said and through the wide access to media give a lot more time to opinions which once might have been thought of as somewhat dumb.
Further with the amound of spin that surrounds everything it probably is more difficult than every before to find out the 'truth' on things political. Without the knowledge we remain dumb.
I have a suspicion that with all of this people nowadays are more prone to unconsciously being deluded and going along with things they should question than at any time in history.
If that makes us dumber then we are dumber but we do have at the moment the possibility to be the most intelligent ever - it depends on how lazy we are.