And before someone asks: The yearly revenue of Metro AG (66 billion EUR ~ 90 billion USD) is larger than that of Microsoft (77 billion USD).
There are experiments about what helps pupils best to get better with mathematics, and it has been shown that drill and constant exercise is the most effective way, even for complexer mathematical problems.
When the article talks about "exporting water", it actually means that this water used to grow the alfalfa is lost for any other uses, because it is long evaporated. It's not the actual water that gets exported to China (except if the wind blows the vapor to China where it adds to local rainfalls), it's the consumption of water necessary to actually grow enough alfalfa to export it.
The main question is: Where does the water California is watering its crops come from, and what will California do if the source is exhausted?
Take the U2 for instance, it is a line listed as U-Bahn (as you can see from the line number). It runs above ground from Ruhleben to Olympiastadion. Then it disappears in a tunnel until Wittenbergplatz. There it goes up a ramp, and then runs as elevated railway until Mendelssohn-Bartholdy-Park, where it goes down again in a tunnel. At Eberswalder Strasse, it appears again above ground and runs on an elevated railway along Schoenhauser Allee for two stops, and then disappears again in a tunnel until the terminal.
[...] in keeping the sword of judicial damocles off their heads.
As it is the Sword of Damocles, and it was hanging on a single hair of a horse's tail above Damocles' head, the correct metapher would be the judical Sword of Damocles.
I wouldn't give much on a statistic that only works if you arbitrarily choose a specified starting point. And yes, you can manipulate every trend by choosing your starting point accordingly. So I call all claims that "since 1998, we don't have a warming trend anymore" manipulated statistics.
Even your example of FTL does not hold -- there are enough people out there today greatly interested in anything that makes FTL travel possible, and no one is really hindering them to find out how it works, if it works at all. The whole idea that you just have to hide a secret and it will be gone forever is questionable at best. That's why I think the concept of an "evolution towards less education" is flawed. If the interest in education gets lost, it's not because of biological reasons. Then it's because of a general breakdown of society, where the structures that made it possible and worthwile to actually get an education that goes beyond the knowledge you need for daily survival, crumble and die. There were situations like this, Western Europe experienced them after the end of the Roman Empire. It didn't happen because the people of education died out. It did happen because the once stable environment of 1000 years of tradition, education and careers vanished, and a series of short lived, feuding kingdoms appeared, in a constant struggle to their own survival and in a constant fear of invadors. It took about 400 years for the situation to settle, and then suddenly, education appeared again, universities were founded, ancient texts were rediscovered, commented and a series of new discoveries started.