Tag: Education

Enviro-Fascism for Toddlers

 

My kindergartner (ok, not a toddler, per se) is watching some Nickelodeon show called “Rainbow Rangers.” I only paid attention to the background noise until I heard something infuriating.  Their happy little home was experiencing earthquakes; very odd, since they’re not on a fault line. What could possibly be causing this destruction to their home?

Why, fracking, of course. “Scientists say that it’s bad for the environment.” The fracking manager lays booby traps and is, of course, as evil as possible. Undeterred, the Rainbow Rangers show him a better way to generate energy: windmills! Never mentioned, of course, is that wind energy is incredibly inefficient and saves no money long term, to say nothing of the impact (pardon the pun) on fowl-life.

Conservative Is As Conservative Does

 

Trump thumbs upPresident Trump is the most conservative president of my lifetime, including President Reagan. This is true, as a matter of fact, across all three of the legs of the old conservative coalition stool: economy, national defense, and social conservatism. With an impressive record of promises kept, despite the worst efforts of Democrats and Conservatism Inc., American voters have a real choice in 2020.

President Trump has done more to strengthen NATO, as opposed to papering over other nations’ hiding under our nuclear umbrella and so shifting the burden onto our taxpayers and our cities under ICBM target designations. He has, without a massive military build-up (despite his hyping of our latest purchases), imposed more economic pain on bad actors (Russia, China, North Korea, and Iran) than any president since at least Reagan, and done so to the advantage of American working families. President Trump’s policies have paid off in growing NATO member states spending at least 2 percent of their GDP on their own defense, from two to eight members, outside the United States. This satisfies Americans’ basic sense of fairness, building a reasonable basis for continued commitment to an alliance that is finally showing signs of taking itself seriously. Such a substantial demonstration of commitment also serves notice to Russia and China that NATO is not a paper tiger.

President Trump has similarly pushed the United Nations to really live up to its fine phrases, its written aspirations. Far from abandoning the world or merely patronizing other nations, he has treated them as adults, as sovereign states who are entitled to pursue their interests while we pursue ours. He made that point again in hosting an on-camera meeting of the U.N. Security Council members. Read or watch the remarks and you will see even China engaging in a mutually respectful manner.

Seth Barron talks with four City Journal contributors—Rafael MangualEric KoberRay Domanico, and Steven Malanga—about former New York City mayor and now presidential hopeful Michael Bloomberg’s record on crime, education, economic development, and more.

After years of teasing a presidential run, Bloomberg has entered the race for the 2020 Democratic nomination. Just a week before his official announcement, he made headlines by reversing his long-standing support of controversial policing practices in New York—commonly known as “stop and frisk.” Bloomberg’s record on crime will factor heavily in his campaign, but his 12 years as mayor were eventful in numerous other policy areas.

NH Dem on House Education Committee: “F*** Private and Religious Schools”

 

Tamara Meyer Le, a New Hampshire State Representative who serves on the House Education Committee, posted in a recent (and now deleted) public Facebook post, “[Expletive] private and religious schools.” Le deleted the post after Ricochet’s friend Michael Graham of New Hampshire Journal publicized her post. Michael writes that he has made multiple requests to Le for comment but she has not responded to him.

In an October 20th Facebook post, the Seacoast progressive and member of the House Education Committee used the profanity in a diatribe on her public FB page regarding her 8th-grade daughter’s friends applying to private high schools. “And then it happened. The Sunday afternoon my 8th grade daughter who is getting A-/B+s in 8th grade had to learn – while her friends were applying to private high schools – we would not be,” Le wrote. “Private and religious schools do not have anti-discrimination policies that protect students with disabilities.”
“[Expletive] private and religious schools,” Le concluded. Several of her fellow House Democrats ‘liked’ her comment, including Reps. Casey Conley and Heidi Hamer.

My own New Hampshire state representative, Glenn Cordelli (R-Tuftonboro), serves on the Education Committee with Rep. Le and tells me that “her comments reflect her views about private schools.” He also says that Le has in the past “introduced legislation to include private schools in anti-discrimination statutes” because “she believes they discriminate against kids with disabilities because they do not accept all kids.”

Melissa Chen (NY Editor, Spectator US) stops by for a brilliant chat that covers a lot of ground. She describes growing up in Singapore in a “benevolent authoritarian state,” feeling liberated in the US, the fact that most Americans take the first amendment for granted, being on the forefront of human genome research, the Pandora’s Box that is CRISPR, and points out that whatever moral concerns we have about gene editing technology, China does not have them. She is currently the Managing Director of Ideas Beyond Borders, a foundation aimed at translating online content into Arabic and making ideas accessible that can challenge extremism before it takes root. They cover tribalism, intuition vs instinct, post-colonial theory, Bridget’s recurring dream, free speech, self-censorship, and designer babies, among other things.

Full transcript available here: WiW55-MelissaChen-Transcript

Member Post

 

Here in Chicago amid the teachers’ strike, it’s easy to complain about the influence of public sector unions on the city and our daily lives. Hell, I just did so this week (and my thoughts have only calcified). But since I and, I assume, most on this site are true individualists at heart, it’s worth […]

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Attorney General Barr Speaks up for Religious Liberty

 

AG BarrOn Friday, 12 October 2019, Attorney General Barr spoke at Notre Dame Law School. Notre Dame Law School advertises itself as America’s oldest Roman Catholic law school:

At the nation’s oldest Roman Catholic law school, students of diverse backgrounds are encouraged to broaden their social, spiritual, and personal lives while honing their intellectual and professional skills to serve the good of all.

Attorney General Barr took them seriously, and used the forum to deliver a call for defense of Christianity in the public square in the face of all-out attacks from militant secularists. I am pleased to see that the whole text of his remarks is posted on the Department of Justice website [emphasis added]:

Member Post

 

We live in an age of information overload (however muddled by misinformation). With each decade, the potential for individual persons to learn about distant things improves. Books, radio, telephones, automobiles, television, internet, and many other innovations combine to provide access to pictures, stories, and people around planet Earth.  Among the most recent technological advances are […]

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ChoiceMedia‘s Bob Bowdon and Pioneer Institute‘s Cara Candal talk about charter school authorizing in California and a recent bill that gives school districts rather than the state  the authority to approve  charter schools; good news for online learning programs in Oklahoma; and is there a shortage of teachers in American schools? Plus, Bob calls out Dale Russakoff for a selective New York Times  interpretation of Success Academies.

In their Newsmaker Interview, Bob & Cara talk with Erica Smith of the Institute for Justice, about the history and implications of the Espinoza v. Montana Department of Revenue Supreme Court case, which could help low-income families access private and parochial schools in over 30 states.

Does the Constitution Need Reformation or Restoration?

 

reform or restore constitutionThere is a long-simmering fight on the right between those who urge a convention of the states, under Article V of the Constitution of the United States, and those who urge active resistance at every level of government to nullify unconstitutional actions by every branch of government. The former argue for reformation of the Constitution, while the latter argue for restoration of the Constitution as currently written. Both have merits, both are sincere, and both do not say enough. What follows is a brief outline of some contentions and a suggested common flaw with a common, but very hard, solution.

Reformation:

The convention of states argument is most notably advanced by Mark Levin, in The Liberty Amendments, and by Mark Meckler through the Convention of States Project. Their core claim is the Framers anticipated conditions, under which Congress would be corrupted by at least self-interest and would effectively refuse to put one or more needed amendments before the states for ratification. We certainly see Congress, the presidents, and the courts playing a cynical game of blame avoidance while they collectively distort the legitimate Constitution, as properly amended by the Article V ratification process.

ACF Pomocon #5: Education

 

Today, I interview Spotted Toad, of Twitter fame, about his book on education. He now works in public policy research, a moderately quant guy, as he says–but he was once an idealistic Teach For America kinda guy, who taught the sciences for ten years in public schools in New York and then upstate, among the poor as well as the well to do, in different communities and different periods of the ongoing failure of Progressive education reform. He eventually wrote a lovely, all-American, Emersonian book of reflections on his experience and you can buy it for 99 cents on Amazon as e-book and read it in an afternoon. It’s intelligent and poetic at the same time, devoid of narcissism, and serious about the problems a young teacher faces. This is the sort of conservatism I think we should encourage and so this is me doing my part!

Member Post

 

I originally intended to post this on May Day. May Day is a day for remembering that communists are still out to get you. They just call themselves socialists now to sidestep communism’s ugly histories.  A group of idolized elites and vast unaccountable bureaucracy all claiming to represent commoners against elites like themselves? Check.  Preview […]

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Reclaiming American History

 

It’s about time! Wilfred M. McClay has decided it’s time to take back history from the dominance of Howard Zinn, who disparaged America in his history books and wrote with an extreme, Leftist perspective. His books still dominate the market; his publisher claims over two million in sales (nine years after Zinn died). Although Professor McClay will not be able to change the history education of our children overnight, he has taken a major step in providing a balanced view of American History.

In an Opinion piece in the Wall Street Journal (it may be behind a pay wall so I cite a number of other articles here), McClay decries the current state of history textbooks:

‘They’re completely unreadable because they’re assembled by committee, by graduate students who write little bits and pieces of them. I’m not convinced that most of the textbooks that have the names of very eminent historians on the cover were actually read by them, let alone written by them.’

Member Post

 

I was 10 years old when Sputnik 1 was launched and the space race started.  Echo – a giant reflective satellite – was launched in 1960.  I can remember going to our neighbors yard and watching it through his telescope.  When I was in Junior High School, my family moved to Maryland and the school […]

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The Atlantic: “The Other Segregation”

 

The Atlantic has an excellent piece on the divisive nature of education and socio-economic/racial disparity. If you recall, Trump’s Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos has been tasked with fixing our education system. Few changes have been made. In New York’s elite Stuyvesant High School, only 1% of the students identify as African-American. This is in New York City, one of the most diverse areas in the United States. Only 1% identify, whereas nearly 17% of students nationally are identified as being African-American.

Clearly, Ms. DeVos has not taken her role seriously. Students are being segregated, not only by color, but primarily by academic ability. As the Atlantic makes clear:

Member Post

 

https://www.bbc.com/news/video_and_audio/must_see/48060788/finland-s-new-generation-of-climate-heroes Play on words: Actually that is the name of a Finnish town which has achieved “zero waste” and has therefore proven that if a town of 10,ooo can do it, according to a person in the video (teacher?) we can do it globally and so we have “no more excuses.” Well, there isn’t enough […]

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and talk show host Greg Knapp bring you three crazy martinis today. Jim and Greg differ with Kamala Harris and Bernie Sanders on the issue of reinstating the voting rights of people with felony records. They also raise some concerns with Elizabeth Warren’s proposal to make public colleges tuition free and forgive $50,000 in student loans for Americans in households earning less than $100,000 a year. Lastly, they discuss Herman Cain’s withdrawal from consideration for a seat at the Federal Reserve.