From a restaurant window on a downtown corner, I recently viewed the following:
A large Jeep pulled up to the red light, followed by an SUV. I didn't see the first driver from my angle, but the SUV had a young woman who was texting something while waiting at the light. As the light changed, the Jeep began to move. It stopped abruptly because a late car from the cross street sailed through the intersection. Apparently cued only by peripheral vision, the woman in the SUV put her foot on the accelerator – without raising her head, while continuing to text. The SUV plowed into the back of the Jeep at a healthy speed, crumpling its own entire front end dramatically (but oddly, not doing any apparent damage to the Jeep, which had one of those large tires strapped to its back that I guess served as a buffer). Both vehicles pulled around the corner of the restaurant I was watching from, and I got to see the insurance information exchange. I found it interesting that the woman continued texting the instant the exchange was over and she had phoned for help.
Nominally, I suppose this was a moving accident but as its instigation happened when the SUV's driver was texting while motionless at a red light, I'm more sympathetic to the above article's cop's "unlawful communications" legal rationale than I might be otherwise. Although from the linked article and legality aside, the cop still sounds like a classic paper-dispensing jerk.
[O]ver-educating the population makes nearly everyone poor.
There is a hell of a lot more value in an educated populace than can be put in dollars, even if one accepts the zero-sum premise you are outlining here. For starters, an educated population is much more likely to be a functioning civic population; that is, one that keeps its government under scrutiny and actually fulfills its end of the social contract rather than allowing the mindless pulling of a lever every four years to serve as a substitute for real governed consent.
That said, the employment value of being "educated" is becoming increasingly meaningless in a future where traditional vocational jobs that haven't yet been outsourced are being systematically eradicated by automation and the potential for AI-type programming to squash still more traditional "educated" work is growing. Cf. recent article in Mother Jones for a depressing analysis of the logical employment outcomes advanced AI could bring.
Yes, we will be going to OSI, Mars, and Pluto, but not necessarily in that order. -- Jeffrey Honig