We are apes with tiny brains; by definition we’re pretty stupid and lack much in the way of self-awareness. Everything we have in our modern civilization we owe to a statistically tiny number of people who are less stupid than the vast majority. When you look at things this way, the question of whether or not any country is being “dumbed down” is obviously nonsensical. Perhaps the only major difference today from previous times is that we now have always-on media constantly competing for eyeballs in order to get ad revenues. Media folk know the easiest way to get eyeballs is through peddling context-free sensation so that’s what they do, 7/24. And we lap it up precisely because we’re actually pretty stupid and this content satisfies our simple brains. Our mental world, therefore, becomes one of mindless sensation and so it seems we are becoming even more stupid than we were before, but that’s just an illusion. We always were, we are today, and we always will be little more than a planet full of silly babbling apes.