Thursday, May 22, 2008


Sometimes this guy is right on and then sometimes he is standing out there in right field all by himself.

I think of myself as a Republican, especially on economic policies. However, there are many times on social issues where I am more towards the middle. While I agree with Hannity on economic issues, I actually want to distance myself from him on social issues.

page 13: "...the Clinton-Gore administration--starting with the president and
vice president themselves--had turned a blind eye to the growing threat posed to
Americans by global terrorist networks."

I do like his analysis on the lack of offense from the Clinton-Gore administration. I have come to the belief that 9/11 was not Bush's fault.

page 125: "They [people on the street] don't even know the most basic elements
of Civics 101. It makes me wonder: How we are supposed to remain 'one nation'
and 'indivisable' if we don't teach the next generation the basics of good
citizenship and respect for the traditions of our country?"

I agree with most of the pretexts of this argument, especially in light of a post I wrote a couple of months ago about my class's lack of knowledge about 1776. I think we should have a Civics 101 class in high school, even to the point of making kids understand the definition of Republican and Democrat, how to gather information to vote informatively, and so forth. I never learned that stuff in school, but on my own. I never even knew of these Democratic Superdelegates until this year, and I consider myself an informed 35-year-old teacher.

page 140: in the tradition of Winston Smith [of 1984] talking
about the Proles being the only hope...
Thomas Paine wrote to Dr. Benjamin Rush, "I wish most anxiously to see my
much loved America--it is the country from whence all reformations must
originally spring--I despair of seeing an abolition of the infernal traffic in
Negroes--we must push that matter further on your side [of] the water--I wish
that a few well insturcted Negroes could be sent among their brethren in
bondage, for until they are able to take their own part nothing will be

It is interesting that he quotes this because while reading 1984 this year, I noticed that some of the kids would easily become the proletariat. They have to save themselves, but they have to know to save themselves. And I have to remember that when I was 17-18 years old, I didn't know either. That's my biggest learning curve for myself is to remember what I was like when I was 18. Invincible. Knew it all. And I fell for Clinton in '92, my first Presidential election when I was 19, probably because he was on the cover of Rolling Stone anbd played the sax on Arsenio.

page 148: from Joe Clark (the subject of the movie Lean On
"I certainly believe in the voucher system...I think that the government
school is antithetical to the premise of democracy, which is competition. If
there is no competition, there can't be any accountability."

page 149: Although regarding one fallacy of the voucher system, then, that government schools would only have the lowest-performing individuals, and then the private schools would also have low-performing students that don't improve their school, and without the possibility of private schools to eject students that don't perform further degrades the government schools.

"Moreover, liberal hypocrisy particularly abounds on the issue of school choice.
Rich and powerful liberals send their own children to private schools to escape
the abomination of urban education, but they refuse to set urban and minority
parents free to choose good, safe, clean schools for their own children."

The debate on the voucher system is tough because people forget what the alternatives are. If everybody has a choice, what will the public schools be like? One of the reasons that private schools work is because if the student becomes a problem, he or she is kicked out and sent where? back to public school. I do not think it is public education that is the problem, but rather that segment of the population that does not want to utilize it. I had a phenomenally great year this past year but if I could have gotten rid of three problem students earlier (who eventually were taken care of, but well into third and fourth quarter), the kids would have done even better. Luckily, I have a very small problem percentage there. It isn't vouchers that is the problem--it is some of the kids that public schools "can't" get rid of. That's why private schools do well. Public schools do great things when those that want to be there get the chance to perform. They really do.

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