Many nurses are clueless and dumb. Sorry for pointing that out.
Now, in the ICU things are different and I think many ICU nurses could actually run the unit without any housestaff. But on the floors, I wouldn't trust 75% of them.
Which is a shame, because you can really assume incorrectly.
For example, I work in a Day Surgery unit. You might think of it as "Slacker Central" since "no one ever gets sick in Day Surgery...it's all minor stuff." I've got three words for that: Ha, ha, ha.
As far as staff, you've got three former ED nurses (myself included), three former critical care nurses, and two nurses with extensive med/surg experience. You need to get to know your support staff instead of just making sweeping generalizations. You might find that those "idiots" you refer to know more than you think they do, and would be happy to help you if you treated them with some common courtesy.
One other thing to remember: Just as there are new interns and residents starting this time of year, there are new nurses starting. We "veterans" appreciate how hard it is for you guys to be the new kids on the block, so please try to be nice in turn to the new grad nurses. They're just as nervous.
Sorry, had to say it. I apologize if someone feels this was a hijack.