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Archive for October, 2008

I have a middle schooler and someone at high school.  It has been impressed upon my mind in the last several years that somehow we have deviated from the original purposes of education.  School has become; 

a daycare center

a prison

an indoctrination center 

a restaurant 

a social club

a sports team

 

Whatever learning taking place there is not preparing our children to make intelligent, informed decisions in their lives.  Children are in school longer, more hours a day more days a year, than ever before.  There is more violence, more sex, more bullying, more stress and less learning going on than ever before as well.  

Now don’t get me wrong.  The teachers are not the people at fault in most cases.  Are there bad teachers? Are there bad policemen, politicians, doctors, lawyers, preachers ad infinitum.  Of course, there are bad people everywhere.  That cannot be helped.  With education however the problems are varied and difficult and the one size fits all cadre along with the zero tolerance Nazi’s have taken over the asylum.  Here’s an interesting question.  If children spend 33% of their day sleeping (8 hrs.) an another 50% engaged in education (going to and from, sitting in class, doing assignments) how much time do the spend being taught by their parents?  27%?  

Think about what goes on in your home after school.  Don’t forget to take out the hour or two it takes to prepare, partake and clean up after dinner, then there are baths, some children even have time to play before they are packed off to bed.  Of course not all children have parents who care for them.  Some are neglected and abused.  To them school may be a sanctuary, but for most children it has become a prison whose tentacles invade the sanctuary of home ensuring no rest from the stress that marks their every waking moment.  

Well, some say, we are just preparing them to be adults.  This is hogwash.  People who say that are miserable in their lives and seek to make other as miserable as they are.  Children are no longer allowed to be children.  They are over scheduled, over booked, over worked and over stimulated.  They are not content with what they have but are always looking for the next new thing.  I Pod’s, Game Boys, Computers, and TV have isolated our children from each other and from the adults in their lives.  Some children without are willing to kill to get what they feel they “deserve”.  

At school they are ruled by the agenda book, driven by standardized test scores and encouraged by society to grow up faster than is appropriate for their mental health.  We now have dances, yes dances for 10 year olds.   What exactly are they supposed to learn from this?  Children are now encouraged to have “a significant other” in elementary school or they are assigned the “gay” label.  Once children begin to indulge in adult behavior that genie is out of the bottle and good luck stuffing it back in.  

Why you might ask has this come to my attention.  My son (who is a pretty good kid, has some homework issues, but all in all he’s a good boy) got detention.  Why?  Because every child in the school has to wear an ID badge with their picture and name on it. He’s forgotten his 4 times, so now he has detention.  I believe in obeying the rules, so he will go and do as he’s told but……  It occurs to me that a really good way to get around this whole issue is to take a leaf out of the Nazi handbook and just tattoo their Social Security Numbers and names on their forearm or maybe on the back of their hands like in the 5th Harry Potter movie.  That way they would be always recognizable and the school/prison would always be able to reach out and touch them, or there are micro chips that vet can place under an animals skin These are just a couple of other options.  

Mr Orwell was wrong.  He should have titled his book 2008, instead of 1984.

We have met the enemy and he is us.

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Something occurred to me this morning, when my local talking heads were pulling a “Chicken Little” stunt, you know,  “the sky is falling, the sky is falling, watch us for the latest.”  They reported that now communities were going bankrupt and soon things like road work and trash collection would have to go by the wayside to pay the bills.  This got me to thinking, where is the outrage from the “drive by media”?  Where are the calls for investigations of the major players in this mess?  Why are Misters Shummer, Dodds, Frank and Pelosi not being summoned before a Senate committee investigating why this crisis occurred? 

We have of course the obligatory committee with the usual suspects grilling the administration, which sounded the alarm about the fallout from these unbelievably rash and ill conceived practices as early as 2003.  Mr. Dodds had the bald faced hypocrisy to ask why the administration did not alert Congress and the American people about the possibility of this all going south.  Why those on the hot seat did not answer the question honestly is a mystery to me.  This is what should have occurred at the hearing.

Mr. Dodds: (smirking)  Why  didn’t the administration alert Congress to the possibility of such a disaster occurring in the financial markets?

Token administration scapegoat: Well, Senator because the people responsible for it, those on the Senate Banking Commission/committee told us in 2005 there was no problem.  Congressmen Waters, Davis, Meeks and of course Clay (who called the idea of an investigation of Mr. Raines a political lynching) spoke at the hearings and assured us all was well.  Then there are the usual suspects Senators Shummer, Dodds, Pelosi and Frank not to mention Waxman.   All of them have told us that there was NO crisis, it was made up by racist Republicans.  The fact is that those in charge i.e. Raines, Garlick and Johnston were cooking the books, but received a pass because of their political leanings and their victim status as blacks, women and or Democrats.  The regulators in 2005 were attacked, their expertise besmirched, their integrity degraded all because they had the audacity to tell the truth.  I don’t know Senator………why didn’t YOU tell us the truth in 2005?

That’s what should have happened.  Those in charge whose unbelievably naive, incompetent idea it was to force financial institutions to lend money to people who couldn’t possibly afford to pay back their loans should be investigated.  Their assets should be frozen and all monies earned by them over their government salaries put into a fund to repay the losses at Freddy and Fanny.  Those two organizations should be revamped or if that is not feasible dismantled and the loans that have some hope of being paid refinanced.  

We the people should then take a very intense look at the partners of the Liberal Left who helped drive the bus of this crisis.  How does it feel at the New York Times, LA Times, Philadelphia Enquirer, et al, to know that you are officially the whore of the Democratic Party?  You have prostituted your ideals, your craft and your integrity to people who use you to protect them, to make them rich and to steal and cheat not just your reader but you as well.  Prostitutes on the street get better treatment, at least they get paid.  All you get are falling revenues, job losses and subscriber flight.  Congratulations, American journalism died-2008, actually it committed suicide.  

The government should commission a monument.  We could put in  Arlington National Cemetery.  Wait never mind, it would be among those who served and gave the last measure for their country…….they’d probably rise up in mass and throw the monument into the Potomic River.  That’s probably appropriate. It’s already really polluted, one more pile of trash wouldn’t even be noticed.

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Obamanation

Ladies and Gentlemen,
I am a white, middle class, WASP. I was born and raised in the Socialist Republic of Maryland where you can’t swing a dead fetus without smacking a liberal democrat. I should by all accounts be as liberal as those I grew up with. I am not. I am a disgrace to the proud heritage of “Vote early, Vote often, Vote dead, Vote Democrat.

Even if I was a Democrat, even if I was a Liberal I could not vote for Senator Barak Obama. Not because of his economic ideas, which will be disastrous. Not because of his socialist ideals which will prove to destroy the ethics and mores of this country. Most of all not because he’s black, a fact he and his campaign want the rest of us to forget but they can’t seem to stop talking about. No the reason I can not nor would I ever vote for, hire, talk to or be in the same room with the Senator is for one reason only. His stand on what to do with babies born of botched abortions.

It is the Senators contention that saving the life of a baby already born as the result of a botched abortions is not near as important as the sanctity of Roe vs. Wade. The fact that this is a human being does not seem to occur to the Senator. It is the same kind of attitude that enabled generations to this day in some parts of the world, to buy and sell their fellow men. In fact, it is worse. People can be freed from slavery or indentured servitude, people can not be brought back from the dead. At least not by anyone presently residing on this planet.
I am also a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. We believe that this nation was saved by the Lord as a choice land. It was fore ordained to be a place of refuge, a place where liberty and freedom would reign but……
Ether 9: 20

“20 And thus the Lord did pour out his blessings upon this land, which was choice above all other lands; and he commanded that whoso should possess the land should possess it unto the Lord, or they should be destroyed when they were ripened in iniquity; for upon such, saith the Lord: I will pour out the fulness of my wrath.”

I am afraid ladies and gentlemen we are here. Thanks in most part to those who refuse to see where their experiment in social engineering has taken us. They are so steeped in hubris, self-gratification, indulgence, degeneration and sin that they can not even admit how far from the ideal they have fallen.

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Excuse me?

Call me naive.  Call me disingenuous. Call me confused but this is the hight of hypocrisy.

I want to know how many of you out there are lily white? How many of you have never driven under the influence, never cheated at anything, never lied, never sped, never “sinned” against God or mammon? While I know that we don’t want career criminals on the police force, what happened to forgive and forget, paid your debt and now you can begin again?

If you want to start down that slippery slope y’all best think up some small business ideas to generate funds because there are going to be a lot of positions going empty waiting for those perfect people. You know the ones without any sins at all (who’ll be casting those nasty stones) to “come on down”.

Let me know how that works out for you. ‘ kay.

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I was turning off the TV this morning after exercising to a video when I notice a SPECIAL REPORT flag on the screen.  I paused long enough to find out that the report was about our current “ECONOMIC CRISIS” and then proceeded to hit the off button.

Why did I turn off the “talking heads”? Am I not concerned about our economic health, don’t I care about our country?  Yes I’m concerned. Yes I care. No I don’t give a rats whisker about what Charlie, Diane, Katie or the rest think.  I am done with the media and have been for years.  I’m glad the rest of the country is starting to get their collected head out of their collected (insert your own location) and have begun to, at least admit there might be a problem.

I vividly remember September 11, 2001.  I was glued to the TV.  I remember March 30, 1981 when I was pregnant with my second child, watching the drama, as the attempted assignation of Pres. Reagan unfolded.  I would watch, go throw up and come back and watch some more.  I remember my mother watching the events of November 22, 1963 unfold. I was quite young but I remember the pall more than any specifics.  Over the years I’ve watched more than my share of TV.  As an only child in a neighborhood of mostly adults I spent a lot of time in front of the tube, watching old movies, sitcoms, cartoons and sports programs. Today however my TV is a conduit through which I watch movies.  I NEVER turn on any news program, EVER.  I get my news from the internet and radio.  I like classical music so occasionally I listen to NPR, but just as long as it takes me to stop what I’m doing and change the channel.

My spouse has spent the last, about 30, years in print media and I can tell you what’s wrong with journalism today.  There are three endemic problems as I see it, some of them were also covered in the book by former CBS newsman Bernie Goldberg entitled “Bias”.

  • Journalism is peopled with individuals with the same kind of attitudes.  They come from the same social class, they live in the same kinds of neighborhoods, they go to the same schools, are taught by the same professors, they work with the same people and they have the same view on religion (it’s bad), socialism and wealth distribution (it’s good) and the average Joe (six-pack).  Not only is he stupid but he’s dangerous as well. You may find a conservative now and again but they don’t last long or they keep their heads down.  There are other more lucrative ways to make a living, without swimming with the piranhas every day.
  • Old hippies are in charge.  In the past it used to be that to get ahead in journalism you had to start at the bottom, Copy Person for instance or Cub Reporter.  No more, young skulls full of mush, taught in the majority by radical left wing professors are hired right out of college and put on the payroll as reporters.  The more rabidly liberal and anti-establishment they are the faster they rise.  One does not have to find out the facts before they write the story. One never has to worry about whether or not the reporters bias is screaming from the pages.  One has only to manipulate the facts to the agenda and off we go.  Real journalism has died from lack of use and tabloid journalism has emerged as the new model.  Reporters go with their “feelings”, not the facts.  They report on the impact they think something will have on the community, not on what actually happens.  Since they have no guiding moral compass they see no danger to those things which tear down and destroy the fabric of civilization and see history as only the articles of yesterday and consign them to the recycle bins just as they do yesterdays papers.
  • Bean counters rule all.  It isn’t quality that runs newspapers, it’s isn’t journalistic ethics (an oxy moron if ever there was one) that dive the news, it’s the bottom line.  Newspapers are bleeding red ink.  Why one might ask?  Well let’s see, more people are getting their news free on line, they are tired of the outright bias they see daily in papers.  Papers have continually tried to cover more and more news with less and less people.  So the coverage of local events in your community, if covered at all are on page C 4 at the bottom, in one inch blurbs. Advertisers are going directly to the people using direct mail and emails.  Newspapers have stopped being community centered (no more sponsorships of community events) and become simply cash cows to provide income to stock portfolios of investors.  True they aren’t doing very well any more but one of the papers in our area, up until the last five years was making a 30% profit for their company.  Gee I’d like to have a 30% profit in my budget.

There is so much more that can be said about this issue but not here and not by me.  All I can say is that the Foundering Fathers of this country felt impressed to include a “free press” in the 1st Amendment to the Constitution:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Would that the members of all media live up to their Sacred Honor and this most important component of Democracy.  Oh right, very few even know what Sacred Honor is (see previous post).

Sorry I forgot.  My bad.

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Sacred Honor

Ladies and Gentlemen, 

As I was listening to Glen Beck’s program last night he made a very astute and substantive observation.  “We do not have a economic crisis” he said, “we have a crisis of truth.”  “No one believes anyone anymore”.  The public does not believe the press, they do not believe politicians, they do not believe their supervisors, the managers of companies, they don’t even believe their religious leaders and they certainly don’t believe each other.  “Why,” Beck asked, “is that so?”  People are most probably no more dishonest now than they have been in the past on average.  What has so changed in civilization that would account for this state of affairs. 

Beck believes and I think he is right that the crisis of honesty began when people lost sight of the importance of ones “Sacred Honor”.  Our forefathers, those who signed the Declaration of Independence pledged their lives, their liberty, their fortunes and their Sacred Honor to the cause in which they were engaged, the nativity of a new nation.  They knew that of all the things they could sacrifice their honor was without a doubt the most important thing they possessed.  Fortunes come and go, life is tenuous at best but honor lives on after death.  It is the real inheritance we pass on to our posterity.  It goes to the heart of who and what we really are.

Today there is no or little Sacred Honor.  People lie and cheat everyday.  They make promises they don’t keep, make commitments they don’t honor, and they do it with malice aforethought.  Integrity is a word that most people can’t even define.  The best definition of Integrity is “what you do when you’re sure no one is looking.”  Today most people don’t care who’s looking, they do whatever “feels good” thanks to the children raised under the auspices of Dr. Spock.  (Now there’s a man with a lot of explaining to do) Many people have no concept of a “Higher Authority” and chaff at any restrictions on what they consider their many and innumerable rights.  

So how does when develop this concept of Sacred Honor.  I don’t think this is necessarily hard, but it may in some cases engender a complete about face in some peoples perspective.  As with any change one must first accept and admit that one needs to change.  If you are living without honor you need to understand what that looks like.  

So, if you allow others to work so that you can live off their labor-not honorable.  If you cheat your employer by not doing your job and slacking off while other have to pick up your slack-not honorable.  If your parenting skills run to getting pregnant and then dumping your kids on you parents-not honorable.  If you take out loans that you know you can’t pay and then default just to do it again-not honorable.  If you have sex without precautions and then kill that which you created-not honorable. 

I could go on all day, but I won’t (you’re welcome)

Then once you have admitted you need to change then you have to actually do something.  I realize that not many people have expected you to actually do something in this life but unfortunately in this case action is essential.  Stop slacking off, stop living off the labor of others, stop lying, cheating, stealing, don’t take drugs, smoke, over eat.  Go to church, volunteer, feed the hungry, clothe the naked, give blood, vote or a million other things.  There is so much good to do in the world that if we all simply just did something we could wipe out hunger, poverty and disease  or at least get them under control.  

Most of all, say what you mean and mean what you say.  If you abhor violence then don’t commit it.  Don’t burn building in a “just” cause, don’t kill babies because they’re inconvenient.  Take responsibility for your own behavior.  You are in charge of you.  NO ONE ELSE can make the right decisions for you.  It also wouldn’t hurt if you read some history so you wouldn’t make the same mistakes others did in the past.

I know, there’s a worm in every apple.  Such is life.

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