NATION

PASSWORD

Search

Search

[+] Advanced...

Author:

Region:

Sort:

«1234567. . .595596»
Messages

Lol xtian

What is the best way for a vegan and atheist to do during Lent?

Astatinon

nothing?

Hoosier daddies

Give up lentils? ;)

Hoosier daddies

Tag, there actually IS a recall petetion in process for Walker. I think it ultimimately won't be successful, but it's an embarrassment for a sitting politician.

Dr george

Feces Processor, you were an embarrassing puppet bomb, but you could've been a lot of fun. RIP.

Tagarand

No, it's embarrassing to the people passing around the petition. Walker was elected on the very platform that he's implementing now. It's hilarious how every idiot (the people doing the petition, not you, Hoosier) thinks that a politician doing what we always knew he was going to do, is grounds for recall. I don't care for Obama, I don't like his policies, but it's asinine to pretend that he should be yanked from office for it. Walker is there, he was elected. He passed his legislation with the tools at his disposal (after Dems ran and hide to avoid voting). If they want it overturned, they elect someone else next time, and repeal the law he just passed.

Hoosier daddies

IMHO, the Republicans were elected by and large to encourage job growth and get spending under control. They seem to have not given more than lip service to such things and have put much of their energy into right-wing social projects. Again, IMHO, they're likely to pay the price in 2012 for overreaching.

Tagarand

In Wisconsin, that's exactly what they're doing. They're trimming the budget. Doesn't really have anything to do with national elections. What right wing social projects, may I ask, have the Republicans put their energy into? Anything they passed in the house, would have been approved by a Democrat senate, and signed by a Democrat President.

So what exactly are they overreaching on?

What would kant do

Right wing "social projects" include defunding education - the single most economically stimulative government funding. It's about a $1.70 return on every dollar invested in education.

The Wisconsin budget crisis was created by a huge tax cut the preceded and exacerbated the deficit to crisis purportions. Cutting taxes doesn't create jobs - it never has. Laying people off is eliminating jobs.

The pension funding problem is not about Dems or Republicans - both have given massive concessions in collective bargaining over decades so that government employees retire with full benefits and sweet pensions they were told that they "contributed to" because it showed up as a deduction on their paycheck. In many cases, both municipal, county, and state - there was no full funding of that promise. They kicked the can down the road. Now the chickens come home to roost. I love mixing metaphors.

Walker is eliminating unions essentially because they successfully bargained for something previous politicians of every stripe were too cowardly to increase revenues to fund and keep the promises they made. The debt is crushing in US government for a lot of reasons. When you study the history, it appears to me that it comes down to broken promises and setting budget time bombs for future elected officials.

As the late Frank Zappa said:
what they do in Washington (and I'd add Madison)
is just takes care of number 1
and number 1 ain't you
you ain't even number 2

Tagarand

I must have missed where "defunding education" was passed in the house, approved by the senate, and signed by the Whitehouse.

And the only thing I saw about 1.70 return was a UK study done by "Colleges Week". It's website describes it as;

"Colleges Week is in its third year and it is the education sector’s major showcase for the vital role that Colleges play in providing people of all ages and businesses in the UK with the opportunities they need to succeed."

Well if a group that calls itself a "major showcase for the vital role" that colleges play, says that colleges grant a 70% return on education spending, who am I to argue? lmao. I'd like to commission a study to tell my boss's that if they spend more money on my salary, they'll really make more money.

And even if that were true, and I seriously doubt that it is (you can't take one study and simply accept the results) this was a UK study. The United States spends money hand over fist and we trail in every education benchmark. I suppose that's somehow not the teachers fault. It must be classroom sizes...Oh wait, Korea and Japan, two of the countries that have the worlds highest achieving students, have the largest class sizes.

Hmmm. A quick glance shows that Japan spends 4.8% of it's GDP on spending. We spend 5.7%. Why, when we've provided American teachers with more money, and smaller class sizes, are they completely demolished in education ratings by countries who do much, much less?

Tagarand

My mistake. Taking the numbers from the same list, Japan spends 3.6% of it's GDP. That's a significant difference, and their class sizes are enormous.

Astatinon

Perhaps the difference lies in things that cannot be directly quantified? Cultures in the far east, esp Japan, espouse a strong work ethic (perhaps taken too far in some cases, the ubiquitous salaryman perhaps). In the West there are social and cultural issues we need to address, children in places lack the will to learn, the will to succeed. It is the relationships between the student and educators that need to be addressed. (happy to discuss this further, I'm no expert, this is casual observation made at 2am, hugs and kisses)

Tagarand

All I know is that we pay entirely too much money for far too little results. We treat teachers as untouchable, godlike beings, to be blamed for nothing, to be chastised for nothing. Bad results are the students fault, never the teachers. It really blows my mind when people claim their underpaid. Nowhere else would an employer pay that much for such craptastic results.

The Hopeful Laughter of The Voice of ARB

Perhaps we pay too little and are therefore getting what we pay for. Competence doesn't necessarily come cheap.

Hoosier daddies

I'll reserve comments on national teacher pay and benefits. In my state of SC, schools are running on such tight budgets that I've heard of teachers having to pay for xeroxes out of their own pockets.

Tagarand

I don't see how we pay too little when we pay far, far more than the highest achieving countries in terms of education. Just musing that "perhaps" we pay too little, isn't exactly accurate. At all. I would hardly say 50-75k a year is "cheap" and I imagine that even on the lower end of the median, 35k a year, should buy you something, wouldn't you?

And Hoosier, South Carolina is ranked 33k in education spending, at 9k a pupil. To sort of put this in perspective, Vermont, the highest, pays a little over 15k a kid. Utah, the lowest, pays 6k a year. Utah's test scores are higher than Vermont's.

Money can't solve everything. If it did we would have the smartest children in the world, no homeless, no drug addiction, and maybe even unicorns.

Tagarand

SC ranked 33rd in the country. Not 33k, lol.

What would kant do

I must have missed where "defunding education" was passed in the house, approved by the senate, and signed by the Whitehouse.

It's the Republican agenda and clearly stated as such. No one has passed a budget. I completely agree that you can't exclude intangibles like culture. Where I live, we don't get too few results for spending too much because last I checked, we spend 49th/50 states per student on education.

Money is not the issue, which Vermont proves. One issue is what's going on in the home before day one of school. The success of Head Start preschool has been variably attributed to many things. One of the most compelling is that poor kids are fed breakfast and lunch. They're healthier when they get into elementary schools.

Schools are a garnish on the budget plate - it's red herring argument to target education if we are serious about balancing budgets. The meat and potatoes are defense, Medicare, and Social Security.

Must disagree about drug addiction. My state's meager support to subsidize substance abuse treatment ends completely in June. Putting more people who provide that treatment in social service agencies on unemployment.

And on the homeless. 70-90% of US homeless are chronically mentally ill, and funding for them has been cut for decades to where mental health treatment in many counties is nothing more than a single building with a few case managers.

As for unicorns, sarcasm isn't a rational argument. It's implying that someone who disagrees with you is silly, which is ad hominem. I enjoy a lively public policy discussion. If I want a silly conversation, I'll go to Animal House.

Astatinon

Am I being naive to think that the US Defence budget is a little overblown in this day and age? Or "the wars in the middle east to justify further defence spending".
Paranoid conspiracy theories aside.
I agree that raising children with the right start for education is important. While dollars spent on reducing class sizes looks good on paper, it seems the money would be better spent on programmes such as head start to improve children's starts in education.
After that it becomes a policy of getting and holding their attention to school, we can do this both in and out of the classroom. My own experience is that teachers with a real passion and flair for their subject who impart some of that enthusiasm to the class not just though textbooks and learning for exams, but by the type of interactive learning that appeals to many students (The only reason I remembered about Log Natural in Maths was because it was taught to us with the assistance of a large bag of m&m's), these teachers can win the respect and attention of the class and so give them a passion for learning that will hold them in good stead for life.
The second angle is that of home life, here we need to address wider social issues of unemployment and especially poverty (referencing She who sighs here regarding the appaling conditions children in the 1st world still grow up in) amongst others. A child with a stable and secure home life is much more able to learn effectively.
Achieving this would I believe create far better results than simply pushing to meet targets of class sizes and grades.

Hugs and kisses,

Astatinon

Tagarand

What Would Kant Do, I'll respond to yours first.

"It's the Republican agenda and clearly stated as such." - I would like to see this platform page on a party website. Please show me.

"One issue is what's going on in the home before day one of school. The success of Head Start preschool has been variably attributed to many things. One of the most compelling is that poor kids are fed breakfast and lunch. They're healthier when they get into elementary schools. "

I agree about what you said about what happens before day one of school. The problem is that head start is another government program that has sucked up money with not so great results. If I'm not mistaken, head start has been around since the 70's. Look where we are now. Are national education standards up? We've raised two generations with head start, and the results are not better than they were before. I've read a study http: //nces. ed.gov/ecls/ that claims head start has no lasting effect on the early years of a childs schooling.

"Schools are a garnish on the budget plate - it's red herring argument to target education if we are serious about balancing budgets. The meat and potatoes are defense, Medicare, and Social Security. "

I agree with you that balancing the budget would require working on Medicare, Defense and Social Security. But remember Bush brought up SS a few years ago, and the Democrats repeatedly said that there was no problem in SS solvency. They didn't say, yes, there is a problem, but your idea is wrong, here's an alternative" they said "no problem here" and photo opped in front of a statue of FDR.

"Must disagree about drug addiction. My state's meager support to subsidize substance abuse treatment ends completely in June. Putting more people who provide that treatment in social service agencies on unemployment."

I suppose this one is my fault. I was referencing the war on drugs, and the governments ineffectiveness to truly do anything about the problem, while throwing millions and millions and millions of dollars at it every year.

"And on the homeless. 70-90% of US homeless are chronically mentally ill, and funding for them has been cut for decades to where mental health treatment in many counties is nothing more than a single building with a few case managers. "

Then why did we (and do we continue to) spend 30 billion a year on programs like HUD? You're not going to tell me that's a Conservative idea. "As many as 3.5 million people experience homelessness in a given year". That means we're spending (according to the 2006 number I referenced about 30 billion dollars) 9k per homeless person in the United States. A third more than Utah spends to educate it's children (moderately decent achievers, no less). That doesn't make much sense, does it?

Sarcasm wasn't supposed to be a rational argument. I think I did fine laying out the rational before I reverted to sarcasm.

Dr george

Early childhood education is not my specialty, so anything I say here needs to be taken with a grain of salt.

In my understanding, one of the great successes of Head Start is to level the playing field starting off. My mother was motivated enough and had enough free time to teach me my ABCs and 123s before my first day of kindergarten. I didn't know how to tie my shoes, but I was largely prepared. Compare that to children who haven't had such training, and, in fact, spend the first six months learning to use a toilet properly. Yes, that's a case of the state acting in loco parentis, but if both parents are absorbed all day with working to provide for their children, it's a benevolent intervention.

The Tea Party takes to heart Ronald Reagan's adage to get government small enough to be drowned in a toilet and then do it. Yet there are some things a libertarian government can't handle, like disaster response, education, pollution, etc.

Politicians who propose streamlining Medicare and Social Security are nowadays often demonized by both parties, but especially Democrats. Yet clearly something has to be done. There are scores of programs our military doesn't want or need, but congressmen keep them alive because they bring money back home. The war in Afghanistan has now drug on longer than any other military operation we've ever been involved with: but are we safer now than when it first started? Not all crises need military solutions.

A lot of street crime is drug-related. If we were to legalize marijuana and maybe cocaine and offer free treatment for addicts, a la Amsterdam, I suspect we'd be a lot safer. And if we were to provide safe shelter and treatment for the mentally ill homeless, we'd see a remarkable improvement in our society. Remember, a budget is a moral document--many of the proposals floating around rob from the poor to pay the rich.

We in SC spend about as much on prisons as we do on education. If we could catch those vulnerable children BEFORE they fell through the cracks, the penal system wouldn't need to be so large.

I've inquired about teaching in public schools in SC. Where I live, in one of the richer districts, starting teachers begin at @$27,000 per year.

I've rambled on enough.

Dr george

Oh, and congratulations to NONNY for being in the world top 100 Fastest Growing Economies and Hoosier Daddies, Black Friday, and Aki Zeta for being in the top 1000.

Tagarand

"Compare that to children who haven't had such training, and, in fact, spend the first six months learning to use a toilet properly. Yes, that's a case of the state acting in loco parentis, but if both parents are absorbed all day with working to provide for their children, it's a benevolent intervention. "

Unfortunately, while that may be the case some of the time, the vast majority of it is neglect. And I read a study that said the moment those poverty stricken children go back into the public education system, it's often to dysfunctional (inner city, generally) schools, and the benefits are obliterated.

As far as homeless shelters and treatment centers. I'm sure more could be done. But we're spending more now on such things than ever before. Yes, even for the mentally ill. In some cases, some just don't want the help or deny they have a problem. Some people don't want, or cannot be helped.

---

South Carolina Highlights
$45,310 Avg. Elementary Teacher Salary
$65,050 for secondary education.

Two years to tenure. Average HOUSEHOLD income is $42,580. Cost of living in SC isn't all that terrible, I don't imagine.

Dr george

BTW, my figure was for a HS teacher.

Now that the figures have updated, congratulations to Aki Zeta and NONNY for being in the world top 1000 Best Weather.

Ragaskan

Liberate Wonderful Paradise
A resolution to strike down Delegate-imposed barriers to free entry in a region

For: 4,484. Against: 741.

Voting ends in 3 days 8 hours.

Ragaskan: UNDECIDED.

[ Vote Now! ]
I am puzzled on that one. A wised secured region like here, do not let the WA representative to have administrative power on a region, therefore cannot ban nations and impose a password on a region.
It seems that happened over there, the region had been raided, controlled and cleansed. Now there are two attitudes, one is let it be, somehow there did to themselves, with a name like that “Wonderful Paradise”, for sure it attracts greed. I would vote NO. But make no mistake, it will not stop there, and in a sense we would justify greed, selfishness and prone isolationism, which are not the mark for a great foreign policy.
The other attitude is a lot more involving, not only by me but most of all YOU as nations and also the whole region: Philosophy 115. This will not stand. I would vote YES. But make no mistake, it will not stop there, somehow it would justify interventionism, adventurism, and at the end we would consider we have a messianic duty upon the world and we know better how the world should be rules then the world itself.
That is why before voting, I am asking you opinion on this matter. But let me say, it is not a matter of semantics and reason; it is a matter of conviction and most of all gut feeling.
Personally I am inclined to vote YES, I will respect your decision, but mine is made.

«1234567. . .595596»