Liberty Just in Case

A Dialogue for the September 12th World

Archive for the ‘Education’ Category

Hotel California: Have You Checked Out Yet?

Posted by redsatellite on January 13, 2009

Over the last year and a half, I’ve offered up a few of my reasons for leaving California. Although TOO NUMEROUS to mention, there were several that stood out. Hmmm…it looks like, I’m not alone.

Go East, young man? Californians look for the exit

Mike Reilly spent his lifetime chasing the California dream. This year he’s going to look for it in Colorado. With a house purchase near Denver in the works, the 38-year-old engineering contractor plans to move his family 1,200 miles away from his home state’s lemon groves, sunshine and beaches.

For him, years of rising taxes, dead-end schools, unchecked illegal immigration and clogged traffic have robbed the Golden State of its allure.

The clogged traffic? Um….only because 4 or 5 MILLION illegal immigrants walk the streets. Heck…the sidestreets are worse than the freeways.

The number of people leaving California for another state outstripped the number moving in from another state during the year ending on July 1, 2008. California lost a net total of 144,000 people during that period — more than any other state, according to census estimates. That is about equal to the population of Syracuse, N.Y.

The state with the next-highest net loss through migration between states was New York, which lost just over 126,000 residents.

Wasn’t I just mentioning New York? Uh….by George Stephanopoulos…I certainly was!

Why are so many looking for an exit?

Among other things: California’s unemployment rate hit 8.4 percent in November, the third-highest in the nation, and it is expected to get worse. A record 236,000 foreclosures are projected for 2008, more than the prior nine years combined, according to research firm MDA DataQuick. Personal income was about flat last year.

With state government facing a $41.6 billion budget hole over 18 months, residents are bracing for higher taxes, cuts in education and postponed tax rebates.

You can’t say, I didn’t warn you. I’ve blogged about this debacle, ’til I’m blue in the face. And let’s put it this way…(and in my best Arnold Schwarzenegger voice)I’ll NOT be back.

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Posted in Crime, Culture, Economics, Education, Environment, Freedom, Law and Order, Liberalism, Morality, Personal, Politics | Leave a Comment »

Detroit: Worst City in America

Posted by redsatellite on September 5, 2008

Has to be. I mean…c’mon. It’s a cesspool of everything wrong about a large industrial city.

Mayor Kwame M. Kilpatrick pleaded guilty to felony charges here on Thursday and agreed to resign from office and serve 120 days in jail, ending eight months of political turmoil but also opening a new era of uncertainty for the city.

After the agreement, Gov.
Jennifer M. Granholm of Michigan suspended her hearing on whether to remove Mr. Kilpatrick for misconduct, relieving her of being in the awkward position of possibly ousting the mayor, a fellow Democrat, from office.

The City Council that will now try to bring stability to the nation’s 11th largest city is known for its volatility.

And some members of the Council are under federal investigation for possibly taking payoffs before approving a multimillion-dollar sewage contract. 

Detroit is a violent corrupt urban landscape. And may very well be- the most dangerous city in America (although Los Angeles is closing fast). And now it’s criminally mismanaged with no real leadership?

One big recipe- for disaster.

Posted in Crime, Economics, Education, Law and Order | Leave a Comment »

Call Me a Prude

Posted by redsatellite on March 10, 2008

What is going on in Deerfield, Illinois? I’d like to think I’m rather liberal when it comes to sex…BUT NOT THIS!

Parents in Deerfield, Ill., are upset that a local high school is using books in advanced English classes this spring that they say are laced with graphic sexual content, pervasive expletives and mockery of religion.Worse, the books – “Angels in America: A Gay Fantasia on National Themes (Parts 1 & 2)” – are required reading for advanced placement English students at Deerfield High School, but a parents’ group wants them removed.

REQUIRED reading? Are you kidding me? Read the whole article…it’s very disturbing and….extremely explicit. Trust me, you’re not going to believe the dialogue. I’m sitting here with my jaw resting on the floor.

Posted in Culture, Education, Liberalism, parenting | Leave a Comment »

Monkeys vs. U.S. College Students

Posted by Mark on December 19, 2007

This may say more about the quality, or lack thereof, of American Education than about monkeys…

Posted in Education, War and Terror | Leave a Comment »

The Next Target: Our Schools, Our Children

Posted by Mark on September 25, 2007

This piece by Marc Shepherd will go in the Required Reading section of LJiC. My hope is I can look back on this article years from now and laugh at our paranoia over the “perceived” threat of terrorism. That’s my hope, but reality has a way of dashing unfounded hopes, doesn’t it?

There was a great deal of talk about “connecting the dots” a few years ago. Well, take a look at these “dots.”

While Democrats prepare witless campaign slogans blaming Republicans for millions of children not protected by health insurance, al Qaeda’s blatant threat to exterminate 2 million American kids remains unheeded. And it will likely continue to be, notwithstanding mounting evidence that there exists no peril on Earth our young need greater protection from today than merciless jihadist monsters.

Not lack of a national insurance plan. Not global warming. Not racial or cultural disparities. Not even the Patriot Act, any of its overplayed incursions into individual liberties, or any of the other countless silly and diaphanous liberal causes célèbres, but rather that which would abruptly and savagely end their innocent short lives.

Nearly 6 months have passed since I first challenged the inexcusable refusal by DHS and FBI authorities to publicly connect the obviously connectable dots representing an unnerving number of alarming events — particularly in the wake of the Beslan school massacre. These include:

* Videotapes confiscated in Afghanistan showing al-Qaeda terrorists training to takeover a school [newly available Video]
* Spokesman Suleiman Abu Gheith‘s declaration of al-Qaeda’s “right” to kill 2 million American children
* An Iraqi national with known terrorist connections caught with a computer disk containing information detailing Department of Education crisis planning for U.S school districts.
* Two Saudi men – one wearing a black trench coat despite the Florida heat — terrifying a busload of Tampa schoolchildren by boarding a school bus and remaining for the entire ride to school, all the while laughing and speaking Arabic.
* A March FBI/DHS bulletin noting “recent suspicious activity” by foreigners who drive school buses, are licensed to drive them, or have actually managed to purchase them right here at home. Including “members of the unnamed extremist groups” who have obtained commercial drivers licenses with school bus endorsements.
* Osama bin Laden’s promise that the 2004 terrorist attack at Beslan will happen many times over in the United States.

In that time, little or nothing has been done to relieve parents’ understandable anxieties, despite the fresh dots which continued to accrue on this disturbing non-puzzle.

Dots like the seventeen full-sized yellow school buses reported stolen from charter schools, business schools and private bus companies in Houston, Texas, over the past few months. Connect to that and previous disturbing stories the fact that thousands of school bus radios have also been stolen (2000 in California in 2005 alone), and the images shaped should be triggering earsplitting alarms throughout all branches of media and law enforcement.

But instead — the silence looms apparent while the question remains: Why?

This is an important piece.

The Glen Beck video from CNN mentioned above is another warning cry. I strongly urge the readers of LJiC to watch this series, and spread the word. One of the guests in the video asks “What part of ‘We are at war, and our children are threatened do we not understand?” Are we living in a September 10th world in regards to this threat? I pray we are not.

Amen. How in the world can we ignore this threat, this thing the Islamists call “The Perfect Day?”

This video of Beslan continues to haunt. And yes, it can happen here. Beslan was a dress rehearsal for Al-Qaeda’s attack on America.

We fight World War IV on many fronts. Iraq, Afghanistan, Somalia, The Philippines, are but a few of the locations. Military, Economic, Technological are but a few of the ways. The Islamo-Fascists continue to find new ways to attack us, in ways the Nazis never dreamed of. While the evil of Iran speaks to the United Nations, his allies plan attacks on our children and our schools.

Posted in 9/11/01, Education, Intelligence, Islam, Law and Order, War and Terror | Leave a Comment »

Harry Potter and the Bible

Posted by Mark on October 4, 2006

It never stops…..I mean….NEVER. The attack on Christianity is relentless- NOW you can’t read.

Amber Mangum was a frequent reader during lunch breaks at her Prince George’s County middle school, silently soaking up the adventures of Harry Potter and other tales in the spare minutes before afternoon classes.

The habit was never viewed as a problem- not, a lawsuit alleges, until the book she was reading was the Bible.

A vice principal at Dwight D. Eisenhower Middle School in Laurel last month ordered Amber, then 12, to stop reading the Bible or face punishment, according to a lawsuit filed Friday by Amber’s mother. The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court in Greenbelt, alleges that the vice principal’s actions violated the girl’s civil rights.

She was reading on her own time….in her own space- and not during class. Minding her own business…not bothering ANYONE! So what’s the problem? What in the name of JESUS is going on?

Why do civil liberties only apply to Muslims and Secularists? You can bet if the girl had been reading the Koran….the ACLU, CAIR, and half the Arab world would be THREATENING the school.

And the Vice Principal would’ve been fired, and living in fear.

Posted in Bill of Rights, Christianity, Constitution, Education, Politics | 3 Comments »

The Culture of Protection

Posted by zaphriel on July 18, 2006

From Yourself

Photo_071506_002.jpg

OK, so this one is pretty straight forward. I was in South Lake Tahoe with a friend the other night, enjoying a great day off. We took in the beautiful view of the lake, enjoyed some of Tahoe’s finest cuisine, visited the Improv show, and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. But there was a bit of entertainment that was unexpected and constant. It started with the sign posted at the hotel we decided to get (you know, just in case we had too much, which we fully intended to do.) The sign read, “THIS ESTABLISHMENT ALLOWS THE SMOKING OF TOBACCO PRODUCTS ON ITS PREMISES. THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA HAS DEEMED THAT TOBACCO SMOKE IS BAD FOR YOUR HEALTH.”

Now, I have been to California before, and I used to live in the great bastion of Los Angeles, so I am aware of the pervasiveness of both the PC culture and the Culture of Protection that exists, but every time I encounter one of these asinine and blatantly obvious warning signs that unabashedly insult all of our collective intelligence, I just have to laugh, and think…

“THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA HAS DEEMED YOU ARE TOO STUPID TO THINK FOR YOURSELF, SO WE, THE GOVERNMENT OF CALIFORNIA, (A GROUP OF EQUALLY IF NOT SUBSTANTIALLY MORE MORONIC INDIVIDUALS) MUST PROTECT YOU FROM YOURSELVES, BECAUSE EVERYONE IS PRECIOUS” [as long as you pay taxes].

This level of public “protection” is pervasive and obtuse, and no where is the illustration more stark than at Lake Tahoe. It straddles the Nevada / California border, and the line is very obvious. On one side there is Large Casinos, and Beautiful Hotels, and sane self protective people who are treated like adults, on the other is a beautiful view, bungalow hotels, extravagant shopping and apparently inept morons.

Attracted by the allure of Trendy dining and a unique bar experience, we wander onto the California side. My I.Q. apparently dropped because I had to be reminded by a sign on the restaurant door (THIS BUILDING CONTAINS CHEMICALS AND MATERIALS THAT THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA HAS DEEMED CAUSES CANCER IN LAB RATS) [Man good thing I’m not a LAB RAT]. Of course there is no smoking, not even in the open air bar WHERE THERE ARE FIRE PITS, that of course warn you of this.

CAUTION: HOT SURFACE
Photo_071506_002.jpg

NO… REALLY!!! I did could not grasp the concept before they warned me that FIRE IS HOT. Oh and so is, HOT TEA, HOT CHOCOLATE and HOT COFFEE, they tell me so on the cup. SO to collect myself I go to the bar where there is a sign warning me THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA HAS DEEMED THAT ALCHOHOL MAY CAUSE BIRTH DEFECTS (good thing I am already born), but I boldly ignore that warning and continue to get inebriated, and avoid the hot fire (one out of two ain’t bad right) although I was tempted several time to touch the fire, but then I looked at it and was reminded once again…

CAUTION: HOT SURFACE
Photo_071506_002.jpg

Posted in Culture, Education, Politics | 1 Comment »

Hollow Threats and the Teachers Unions

Posted by zaphriel on April 5, 2006

John Stossel hits it on the head,and shows us that unions, and teachers unions in particular, everywhere are allot more bluster than substance.

Calling the public school bluff

Last month, 500 angry schoolteachers assembled outside my office. The United Federation of Teachers (UFT) was furious that “Stupid in America,” a “20/20” show I did on education, suggested that some union teachers were lazy. They shouted that I didn’t understand how difficult teaching was, and chanted, “Shame on you!”

Randi Weingarten, head of New York City’s union, took the microphone and hollered, “Just teach for a week!” She said I could select from many schools. “We got high schools, we got elementary schools, we got junior high schools!”

I accepted. I even said I’d let the union pick the school. I thought I’d learn more about how difficult teaching is. …

Finally, four days before what was supposed to be my first day of class, they canceled. …

I wonder why the union even made the challenge. I suspect the UFT didn’t expect me to say yes. When I turned out not to be easily intimidated, the teachers’ union and the government school monopoly folded. Perhaps there’s a lesson there.

It is a very telling article, and akin to my experience here with the Teacher’s Union controlled Board of Education. They rule by bluster, intimidation and threat. if you don’t play ball, they help the administartion fire you. If you call them out they shout you down as being against the kids. They think they are the ONLY way, and they will prove it by any means necessary.

Posted in Education | Leave a Comment »

Back to Business… Can They Educate

Posted by zaphriel on April 2, 2006

Now that my April Fool’s Insanity has passed. It’s time to get back to business.

I’ve been following the Halima Academy “Bureaucracy Trial” with fervent and personal interest. I did not record anything, nor did I bring my notepad, so I am paraphrasing allot here, but I am sure the transcripts will back up my general assertions.

TM.jpgFriday’s hearings (continued yet again until monday mainly due to the long winded [and tax-payer compensated] efforts of Deputy Attorney General James E. Irvin) were more of the same (how many times can you show the court the same documents and make the same points?) nickel and dime complaints. But a few new disturbing currents surfaced today (besides the “we want our money back” issue).

First, they outright accused Halima Academy of Grade Fraud and Ineffectual Educating (an issue that was never been brought before the Nevada State Board of Education in it’s consideration for closure.) What type of bombshell did they lob to back this up? Well it seems that Mr. Tom McCormack (“Technical Advisor for Charter Schools”) finds it hard to believe that these throwaway failures, (or more precisely, “kids that received all F’s in Regular schools”) could possibly get all A’s at Halima. Mr. McCormack admitted that he was sighting a newspaper article and when pressed by the judge also admitted that the original statement could have been over-emphasized for effect. He maintained that he found the students over-all drastic improvement to be “very suspect”, and wondered under oath if that was because of grade inflation and low standards (as if the regular schools have better standards). He actually inferred that is was not possible for these students to have improved so much.

So because and institution goes the extra mile, uses flex schedule, and provides a comfortable and supportive atmosphere, and produces results in children the district has already thrown away, it is suspect! WHY? BECAUSE HALIMA SUCCEEDED WHERE THE “REGULAR” PUBLIC SCHOOLS FAILED!?!?!?! Mr. McCormack and the Nevada State Board of Education are very arrogant bureaucrats indeed. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Education, Politics | 1 Comment »

Save the School

Posted by zaphriel on March 30, 2006

Chuck Muth (A Nevada Political Activist) and I don’t always agree, but Chuck hit the nail on the head today…

Bureaucrats at the Gate


If you ever questioned whether or not the education establishment is hostile to the notion of charter schools, the nightmare which Halima Academy is suffering in Reno at the hands of paper-pushing education bureaucrats right now ought to remove any such doubt. What the Nevada Department of Education is doing to Halima and its students is all but criminal.

Halima Academy is a charter school sponsored by the Nevada Department of Education. And the department voted earlier this month to close the school immediately for various “violations” of the Nevada Revised Statutes (NRS) governing charter schools. I’ll just point out here that the main body of the NRS comes to over 14,000 horse-choking words and 26 single-spaced pages.

The fact of the matter is, if the department wants to close a charter school down, there is MORE than enough legislative gobbly-di-gook in the NRS to make it “legal.” This is reminiscent of what former New York Court of Appeals Judge Sol Wachtler once famously said: “Any prosecutor who wanted to, could indict a ham sandwich.”

Anyway, Halima appealed the department’s closure decision to the courts, and Washoe District Chief Judge Jerry Polaha issued a temporary stay. Another hearing is scheduled in his court tomorrow.

The Department of Education cited a list of what it contends are infractions of NRS as its excuse for closing the school. The “problems” generally center around failure to complete and/or submit various bureaucratic paperwork and other alleged technical non-compliance. The key point here is that none of the infractions relate to whether or not the children in the school are receiving a proper education. And none of the so-called infractions put the children in any kind of physical danger.

Read More

All of this amounts to a peeing match between the State BOE (generally thought to be controlled by the teachers union) and a well meaning charter school that takes in what the school board has already thrown away. Sad really, that the State Board of Education, does not have education first on its priority list.

Posted in Education, Politics | Leave a Comment »