response to : the human cost of an illiterate society

The author of this essay claims that the fault of the many illiterate citizens in the U..S. falls on the government. I have a difficult time understang this.
To paraphrase the quote that the author brings up regarding Madison; if one lives in a country where he or she is a governor of themselves, it would be ludicrous for him not to have the knowledge, or the means of aquiring it.
I believe that the Government is doing a great job with providing education, as well as cheap college education.
How can the Author bring in a quote like this to prove his point about the plight of illiterate citizens?
The Author also says that if 1/3 of the illiterate citizens would have voted in the election of 1980, then Ronlad Reagen would not have likely been voted president.
To the best of my knowledge most people only vote for an individual that is apart of their party, without even looking into their policies. Also many citizens will vote for someone because of certain bias,without even knowing what the candidates political stances are.

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