Towards the end, Hacker’s reasoning gets just bizarre. He keeps emphasising how important “citizen statistics” is. I’m baffled as to how one could teach statistics in any useful way without the material he wants to throw out! Prerequisites: we needz them. “Is Algebra Necessary?” If you want to do statistics or economics, yes, it is.
One thing Blake doesn’t address (perhaps it’s in one of the links he provides) is part of the larger picture: the idea that because students are not graduating, we should lower the bar. Which makes a diploma quite meaningless; they are not simply participation awards.
edit: PZ Myers does bring it up in his post