I need some statistical data on how many in a population typically can think when provided a subject and how many can choose their own subjects and 'run with the ball'. My guess is that there will be significant variation as a function of the economic and social structure of the Nation. For example, the Pew research center had published earlier this year a survey on the religious inclinations of Americans and it showed a decrease in the number of people who are compulsive followers of a religious faith. I should probably use the exact phrase used in the questionnaire but qualitatively what I took it to indicate was that in the US, we may see for the first time a decline in one of the most fundamental inhibitions of humans.
I'm now convinced that here people are rewarded for not trying to be 'original'. Do we have a Nation of Followers? The process of erasing our natural curiosity is very systematic, starting very early in our lives, both at home and in school. A Professor recently mentioned that if you are imaginative and creative, you should study Arts; Scientific research is boring, repetitive work, or something to that effect. Outrageous as it is, I soon realized that this is what is being taught to the future generations.