September 20, 2006
Re: Chavez calls Bush the Devil
Posted by Jon Sanders at 5:38 PMNews reports of the Chavez smear have said that the White House has shrugged the comments off. But my sources say the president has been wandering the White House forlornly, even stepping out on the veranda overlooking the South Lawn and singing, softly, in the tune of "You Don't Bring Me Flowers":
You don't call me "Hitler";
You don't blame the neocons.
You hardly rant of Rove anymore
When you stamp on the floor
At the news of the day.
I remember when
You couldn't wait to bash me
And Rumsfeld and Cheney.
Now, after rippin' me late at night
When it's time to recite
The old Nazi soundbyte,
Well, you just roll your eyes
And say "He's Satan, all right?"
And you don't call me "Hitler" anymore.
It used to be so natural
To talk about the Zionists.
But "used to be's" don't count anymore
They just lay on the floor
While you just rave away.
Looney, I remember
All the things you called me,
I learned how to laugh,
And I laughed till I cried.
Well, I learned how to smirk
When you said that I lied.
You'd think I could learn
How to tell it goodbye ...
But you don't call me "Hitler" ... anymore.
A Hollywood anti-Communist
Posted by Andrew Cline at 4:34 PM
In NRO today, Wake Forest grad John Meroney has a nice tribute to Roy Brewer, former Hollywood labor leader and a strong anti-Communist, who died on Saturday.
Re: Teaching History
Posted by Dr. Troy Kickler at 4:29 PM
It will be a while before the kids display the level of interpretative sophistication that McClay evinced. The love of the particular, the patriotism that he discussed, however, can be instilled at an early age. I will never forget the times as a five or six-year-old when my father took me to battlefields or museums or historic houses after school and on the weekends. Or when I learned that where I lived was significant in some major and national historical event. I loved living history events, too, (and dressing up as historical characters such as Benjamin Franklin or Pancho Villa on Halloween). NC has a rich history, and there are many living history events that take place across the state. Start somewhere next door so to speak and let the kids' particular interests influence where you take them. So, have some fun while giving them a sense of place.
Another reason Greg Mankiw is on my regular reading list
Posted by Joseph Coletti at 4:19 PM
His posts and his readers' comments are almost equally instructive and include graphs like the one below.
Posted by Joseph Coletti at 3:35 PM
Wilfred McClay made a compelling and eloquent case for the teaching
of history to students, but a couple of us were left wondering how to
do that. So I'd like to hear from the parents of older children,
homeschoolers, and those with a better sense of pedagogy than I have.
books and other methods should parents (and schools) use to teach our
children history in a compelling way without resorting to tactics like this?
UNC-Wilmington's criteria for promotion to full professor
Posted by Jon Sanders at 3:01 PMListed here:
For appointment to the rank of professor a candidate shall have exhibited during her/his career distinguished accomplishment in teaching, a tangible record of research or artistic achievement, and a significant record of service. An individual with the rank of professor should have a reputation as an excellent teacher and be recognized as a scholar within her/his professional field.
Given that UNCW has still not given Prof. Mike Adams the official reason for denying him promotion, it will be interesting to compare those criteria with Adams' accomplishments.
Chavez: Bush is the Devil
Posted by Shannon Blosser at 12:02 AM
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez called President Bush "The Devil" in a speech today to the United Nations.
No word yet on if Mama Boucher agrees that Bush is "The Devil."
This has got to be embarrassing
Posted by Jon Ham at 11:37 AM
Imagine you're a reporter covering a debate between your state's two
senatorial candidates. You go back to the newsroom and write up your story,
never mentioning the item that became the huge story of the week: a TV
reporter's idiotic question about one candidate's grandfather maybe
Then, the very next day, you write a story alluding to the event you totally ignored a day before. The reporter wrote:
Allen erupted when a media panelist asked him to respond to Internet reports that his maternal grandfather was Jewish.
But he should have added:
Of course, I was too dumb to realize this was news. Or maybe I
was making the judgement that you, dear reader, should be spared this
ridiculous question and Allen's response. Or maybe I had just left to
go to the restroom.
Whatever the reason, I would have loved to hear his city editor asking about it.
Re: Burning Bull****
Posted by Michael Moore at 11:02 AM
Here is what I think people would say around manure burning....
Light Rail: In Mecklenburg Co.
Posted by Michael Moore at 10:48 AM
Now this from Huntersville, NC, is this light rail stuff a good idea?
"Discounting Education's Value"
Posted by George Leef at 10:25 AM
In the current Chronicle Review, Anthony Carnevale (senior fellow at the National Center for Education and the Economy), contributes an article (subscription site) by that title, taking issue with people who have argued that it's a mistake to believe that a college degree is a good investment for just about everyone.
Carnevale relies on statistical averages in an effort to carry his argument, but I think the effort fails. Of course it's true on average that people who have college degrees (a group that includes many fabulously wealthy people in business and the professions) earn significantly more than people who ended their formal education without getting a degree (a group that includes many people who have very low skills, and sometimes low motivation as well). Average data here are meaningless because people in the two groups are not fungible.
The right way to look at this question is to focus on people at the margin -- that is, individuals who could enroll in college, but don't have particularly good academic records. Is such an individual making a bad financial mistake in not going after the college degree? I think the answer is usually in the negative. A young man, for example, who isn't really interested in reading books, writing papers, and engaging in intellectual arguments would probably be doing himself a huge favor by learning how to fix cars or do sheetmetal work (see my post on that from yesterday) where he will learn a very useful set of skills and can start earning a substantial income right away, as opposed to going to college, piling up debts, and graduating four or five years later with a set of skills that may equip him to do work like theatre ushering or selling video games.
The fact that we now find large numbers of young people with their BA diplomas in hand taking "high school" jobs that require nothing more than simple trainability ought to cause Carnevale pause, but it seems that he is unaware of this. He also seems unaware of the serious erosion in college standards that makes it easy for academically disengaged students to get into a huge array of nonselective schools and coast through to their degrees without any detectable gain in knowledge or skill.
The main problem with Carnevale's crowd is that they don't believe in the invisible hand. What I mean is that they don't trust individuals to make the optimal investments in their own human capital. They think that people need subsidies to get them into "the best" sort of education, namely that provided by colleges and universities. I believe otherwise. It is not a case of "discounting education's value" to maintain that college coursework is not the ideal human capital investment for everyone and that we need not worry if more people start to conclude that college isn't worth it, given their own interests and circumstances.
Posted by George Leef at 10:16 AM
Paul Krugman, economist turned propagandist, keeps cranking out NYT pieces that are meant to be picked up by leftist politicians to be used in their quest to get envy-ridden voters to support them.
Writing today on NRO Tom Nugent rips Krugman's latest piece to shreds. Most enjoyable.
Environmental Activists Powered by Bull****.
Posted by Geoff Lawrence at 09:37 AM
Customers in the great state of Vermont can do their part to help
save the planet by electing to have their electricity generated through
the burning of cow manure as opposed to coal-fire or other forms of power generation. Presumably, burning cow manure is environmentally preferable to traditional power plants. (Probably not true, but it's at least more costly and therefore may fulfill the activists' need for exclusivity). Just don't do it near my house.
High School Audits
Posted by Dr. Terry Stoops at 09:31 AM
Yesterday, Governor Easley announced that UNC-CH will receive a $300,000 grant to audit high school expenditures in all 115 school districts. The goal is to find a relationship between spending and student performance.
I doubt that the audit results will yield any new or useful information. Studies that attempt to find a link between spending and student performance usually find a weak or inconsistent relationship between the two. Regardless of this, the audit will be used to justify additional spending. What is truly curious about the audit is that both Easley and Judge Manning have crowned the New Schools Project (NSP) as the savior of low performing schools. Perhaps the audit is another push for NSP funding.
You're Kidding, Right?
Posted by Lindalyn Kakadelis at 08:29 AM
OK, let me get this straight. The Wake County School Board passed a resolution (.pdf) “encouraging” the General Assembly to:
“Study the programs in the state’s charter schools and to determine if their financial and academic performance should warrant incrementally increasing the charter school cap in North Carolina state law.”Give me a break! How many more studies do they want? Do they think this kind of resolution will quell the arguments made during the bond debate in Wake County? This does nothing!!
I guess some must think moving from “never raising the cap” to “studying the schools” might be movement. Interesting, if the threat of a bond defeat provides “movement,” just imagine what DEFEATING the bonds could accomplish!
Shaw's status endangered
Posted by Paul Chesser at 08:15 AM
If Keith Ellison, the "Minnesota Muslim" running for Congress in that state's 5th District, wins as expected, he will become the nation's highest ranking elected follower of Islam -- surpassing North Carolina State Sen. Larry Shaw.
What would Basil Fawlty think?
Posted by Jon Ham at 07:39 AM
Basil Fawlty, the addled innkeeper in the British TV series "Fawlty Towers", treated his Spanish waiter, Manuel,
horribly. It was clear that Basil felt Spaniards were beneath Brits in
all respects. Imagine how he would react to the news that the Brits are
actually descended from Spaniards.
Not Really Mandatory
Posted by Dr. Terry Stoops at 07:35 AM
On WPTF early this morning, Wake County school board member Lori
Millberg said, in effect, that mandatory year round schools are not
really mandatory because parents have the choice to apply to another school.
Let’s see where this puts us on the Kubler-Ross model:
>1. Denial – mandatory year round is not really mandatory
2. Anger – parents do not know what they are talking about
3. Bargaining – ok parents, maybe we should talk about this
4. Depression – parents are not reelecting us or voting for the bond
5. Acceptance – the parents were right and we have failed them
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