Moreover, we have a whole bunch of our fellow American citizens who aren’t of the cognitive quality currently necessary to fight for their country. Shouldn’t we be worrying more about what kind of living they’ll be able to earn before we care about solving Mexico’s problems?
Because the pundit class in America is related to so few people who want to enlist in the military, there’s negligible media awareness of how hard it has become to join up. A major hurdle is scoring high enough on the AFQT cognitive test.
The Pentagon isn’t in any hurry to make its intelligence requirements explicable to the media. The conventional wisdom is that intelligence testing is a racist hoax or it just applies to academia, not the real world, or whatever. The fact that the military is obsessive about cognitive testing is something that simply isn’t in the reigning worldview, and the military is fine with that. It likes testing and it dislikes outside interference, so the more convoluted its jargon for talking about its intelligence requirements, the better.
For example, the entrance exam is, in one sense, the ASVAB, a 9 or 10 part 3-hour test. But a 4-part subset of the ASVAB called the AFQT determines whether you’ll be allowed to enlist or not. (The non-AFQT ASVAB subtests influence assignments, such as to vehicle repair.)
Are you losing interest in this topic already as you try to keep ASVAB and AFQT straight? The military doesn’t mind if outsiders are baffled and bored. In fact, it kind of likes it that way. And if potential recruits can’t keep this stuff straight in their heads, well maybe they aren’t military material.