May 22nd, 2014
11:56 AM ET

What I'm reading: U.S. ranked 30th on broadband speeds

By Fareed Zakaria

“If you were to tell someone in Hong Kong or Singapore how much you pay for your broadband Internet service in the U.S. and the speeds you receive in return, they would be shocked. America may have invented the Internet, but we have seriously fallen behind with the speed of our broadband networks and how much we pay to access a utility that has become essential across the world,” writes Micah Singleton for the Daily Dot.

“The U.S. is ranked 30th in the world in broadband speeds, behind the likes of Iceland, Romania, Bulgaria, France, Russia, and the U.K. To put that ranking in perspective, the U.S. Mens Soccer Team – a sport that 99.1 percent of Americans quit before their 10 birthday – is ranked 13th in the world, and we definitely didn’t invent soccer.”

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“[India’s] election might prove to be a big step towards the economic modernization of India that was relaunched in 1991. But this round of reforms will also be far harder than those were,” writes Martin Wolf in the Financial Times. “It is not now just a matter of pulling the state out of the way. It is more about making the government an effective and honest servant of the Indian people. This challenge is possibly an order of magnitude more daunting than those Mr Modi once overcame in Gujarat.”

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“The challenge for China’s educators has been balancing the understandable desire to ace a one-time exam that can transform an entire family’s fortunes, and the likelihood of the language being used in real life,” argues Adam Minter for Bloomberg. “For now, at least, the balance tilts to the former, resulting in a plague of so-called ‘dumb English,’ whereby grammar is mastered on paper but is unable to be used properly. Like so many problems in China this one is often taken to symbolize broader issues with Chinese educational institutions that can produce internationally-renowned test-takers (the best in the world, by some measures), but have yet to turn out a Chinese Steve Jobs. Reducing the role of English on the gaokao won’t soon change those facts.”


soundoff (15 Responses)
  1. John Smith

    Unmarried Childbearing(Data are for the U.S.)
    Number of live births to unmarried women: 1,609,619
    Birth rate for unmarried women: 45.3 births per 1,000 unmarried women aged 15-44 years
    Percent of all births to unmarried women: 40.7%
    What i am reading too many Ba$t@ards in America.

    May 22, 2014 at 12:32 pm | Reply
    • Joey Isotta-Fraschini©

      @ John Smith:
      Any single woman can give birth to a child and raise it alone, if that is her desire.
      A single mother's raising her child is tremendously admirable and noble.

      May 22, 2014 at 5:04 pm | Reply
    • stuart

      @john smith. You sir, are a troll. I saw someone about you. She put a spell on you. You will get colon cancer next year. You will get a lot of pain.

      May 22, 2014 at 5:18 pm | Reply
  2. chri§§y

    Yep and 62% of those custodial mothers recieve NO child support! Doncha know @ John Smith it takes TWO? Female and MALE...ya Ba$t@ard! Stop bashing women!

    May 22, 2014 at 12:42 pm | Reply
  3. chri§§y

    Oh and heres another stat for you to look up...how many of these mothers are victims of raype???

    May 22, 2014 at 12:44 pm | Reply
  4. Christina

    I had no idea we were so behind in speed.
    No reason for it.

    May 22, 2014 at 1:00 pm | Reply
  5. Texas Annie

    Lol. And I thought Road Runner was the fastest in the world.

    May 22, 2014 at 1:05 pm | Reply
  6. Ferhat Balkan

    Why am I not surprised? I'll tell you a little secret: It's called CORPORATE GREED. Why else? Why do you think the FCC is tossing out the "open internet" or "net neutrality" rules? The Internet was meant to be a free place for everyone and not a place ruled by rules and regulations dictated by corporate greed. So not only are the speeds lower and the prices higher in the US, pretty soon you'll start seeing higher prices for content as well. So much for Internet freedom.

    May 22, 2014 at 1:43 pm | Reply
  7. chri§§y

    Agree @ Ferhat! And isnt it ironic that once "free" tv access got tossed by government regulations that cable prices skyrocketed? We pay more for cable than gas and electric service combined! And thats saying something in a cold weather state like Michigan, let me tell ya!

    May 22, 2014 at 1:53 pm | Reply
  8. Joey Isotta-Fraschini©

    I'm fascinated by that grammar that is unable to be used properly in China.

    May 22, 2014 at 4:25 pm | Reply
    • Joey Isotta-Fraschini©

      Perhaps that condition was caused by vaccinations.

      May 22, 2014 at 4:31 pm | Reply
      • Djhean

        On October 3, thirty high soohcl students from Mount Si's Key Club visited the homes of two elderly folks in North Bend. Armed with gloves, garden tools, and determination ..they set out to offer assistance to these homeowners where the labor had simply become too big an obstacle. The students split and stacked firewood, trimmed overgrown bushes and hedges, brought garden beds back to objects of beauty, raked leaves, and filled an enormous trailer with discarded and rotting lumber that was taken to the dump. The best part of this endeavor was the smiles and hugs given by the homeowners to these high soohcl Key Clubbers. That so many showed up at their homes to Pay it Forward was overwhelming and one of the most heart-warming experiences I have seen. Way to go Mount Si Key Club!

        July 6, 2014 at 9:19 am |
      • Ksatria

        Fareed Zakaria is an effete, anti-American snob with a head too large to get thugroh a set of double doors. His pseudoacademic double speak doesn't play in middle America. He reminds me of the character in 1984 who mindlessly spouts Big Brother's talking points as a matter of obsessive (twitchy) habit rather than actual thought. I once saw Peter Jennings have to cut him off and shut him up in an interview because he was babbling about nobody knew what. It bothers me a little that our president read this book while campaigning, but it comes as no surprise. Barack Obama is a narcissist, a race-baiting Kenyan impostor and a would-be dictator, bent on trashing America to gain favor with world of jealous nations. To ruin with the both of them.

        July 25, 2014 at 7:23 pm |
  9. chri§§y

    Thank you @ Joey! It isnt always easy but it definitely has its rewards! A labor of Love not obligation!

    May 22, 2014 at 5:21 pm | Reply

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