Educational Stupidity

I have ranted many times on the problem of stupidity being taught to our children…instead to teaching the need for civics and history they instead want to pass on BS and misinformation to our children.

These two examples illustrate the stupidity that is being considered as part of the educational curriculum….

First from the great state of Louisiana……

A hearing erupted in laughter when one Republican legislator was compelled to tell another that “There’s no ‘good’ to slavery, though.”

The Louisiana House Education Committee held a hearing on HB 564 on Thursday, during which the bill’s author and committee chairman State Rep. Ray Garofalo was grilled by fellow Republican Rep. Stephanie Hilferty on the bill’s prohibition on “divisive concepts” in education.

Hilferty began by grilling Garofalo about the sources of complaints that led him to author the bill.

“Can you give examples of what they told you?” Hilferty asked.

Garofalo described teachers and parents complaining about “handouts” that they’d been given.

“Like what does the handout say?” Hilferty asked.

“Handouts saying the United States is a racist country, that corporations are inherently racist, and have a bias against…” Garofalo began, as Hilferty interrupted to ask “Can you share examples of these with the committee?”

WATCH: Hearing Erupts in Laughter When GOP Legislator Confronted for Suggesting Schools Teach ‘Good’ Side of Slavery

The ‘Good’ side of slavery?

Seriously?

The term indicts that there is and was NOTHING good about slavery.

Next stupidity comes from the great state of Idaho….a bill that would prohibit the teaching of racism….

A bill that would ban teaching critical race theory and other similar teachings in schools in Idaho is awaiting Gov. Brad Little’s signature. 

The bill, HB 377, passed in the state’s senate on Monday after passing through the house last week. It would prohibit public schools from teaching that “any sex, race, ethnicity, religion, color, or national origin is inherently superior or inferior,” which it says can be found in critical race theory. 

The bill also bans teachings that argue that people should be treated differently based on things like race or gender and that people are not responsible for past actions committed by people who share their same demographics. 

https://www.businessinsider.com/idaho-wants-make-it-illegal-schools-teach-students-racism-2021-4

Red states just keep pushing the culture war crap down the throats of idiots that voted for them.

Personally I believe that there should be a national standard for the teaching of history and civics.

Why is this?

Textbooks help skew history to the absurd.

https://www.realclearpublicaffairs.com/public_affairs/2021/05/06/skewed_history_textbook_coverage_of_early_america_and_the_new_deal_775956.html

Once again the problem is in the education of our children.

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End Qualified Immunity!

We have new legislation on police reform and part of that bill wants to end ‘qualified immunity’….but is this situation really?

Qualified immunity is a type of legal immunity. “Qualified immunity balances two important interests—the need to hold public officials accountable when they exercise power irresponsibly and the need to shield officials from harassment, distraction, and liability when they perform their duties reasonably.”

Specifically, qualified immunity protects a government official from lawsuits alleging that the official violated a plaintiff‘s rights, only allowing suits where officials violated a “clearly established” statutory or constitutional right. When determining whether or not a right was “clearly established,” courts consider whether a hypothetical reasonable official would have known that the defendant’s conduct violated the plaintiff’s rights. Courts conducting this analysis apply the law that was in force at the time of the alleged violation, not the law in effect when the court considers the case.

Qualified immunity only applies to suits against government officials as individuals, not suits against the government for damages caused by the officials’ actions. Although qualified immunity frequently appears in cases involving police officers, it also applies to most other executive branch officials. While judges, prosecutors, legislators, and some other government officials do not receive qualified immunity, most are protected by other immunity doctrines.

in short this statue protects these offenders from being held accountable for their actions.

Here are a few examples of this situation….

Here’s a list from USA Today of outrageous examples where qualified immunity has recently shielded reckless government officials from accountability: 

  • Officers who stole $225,000.
  • A cop who shot a 10-year-old while trying to shoot a nonthreatening family dog.
  • Prison officials who locked an inmate in a sewage-flooded cell for days.
  • SWAT team members who fired gas grenades into an innocent woman’s empty home.
  • Medical board officials who rifled through a doctor’s client files without a warrant.
  • County officials who held a 14-year-old in pretrial solitary confinement for over a month.
  • A cop who body-slammed a 5-foot-tall woman for walking away from him.
  • Police who picked up a mentally infirmed man, drove him to the county line and dropped him off at dusk along the highway, where he was later struck and killed by a motorist.

If an individual, a civilian, committed any of these offenses then the rule of law applies…..but not when the individual wears a uniform.

But not to fear these offenders will still be shielded from accountability for the bill will not be sent out of Congress for the president’s signature……

A compromise to the portion of the bill on “immunity” has been offered by GOP senator Tim Scott……“Scott, who has served as the Republican leader on police reform talks, is suggesting that the doctrine be pulled back for law enforcement and that liability shift from individual cops to the departments that employ them.”

This proposal still does not punish the individual just shifts it to his/her employer….the individual still walks on the offenses they commit.

This is unacceptable!

If I am personally responsible for my actions then the individual cop should as well….this will do little to correct the culture of violence by the police.

I can see the Dems caving to this proposal so that bi-partisanship can be claimed….and once again the Dems will illustrate that they have no spine.

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Looking to 2022

Next year, 2022, will tell the tale…..will the voter truly be turned off by the events of 2021 or will they look at those situations as something to continue with the elections and re-election of enablers.

Now that Biden is entrenched it the seat of power I need to look to the mid-terms in 2022.

I know it is early in the process but I want to give a few thoughts before the rush begins.

2022 elections could be a massacre for Dems if they keep playing it “safe” with their approach to governing…..something they exceed at doing…..they go small and in the end have little to show for their efforts.

The House has a small majority for the Dems and that may not bode well for them to keep the majority in 2022.

The GOP will spread lies…..no let’s call it what it is…..manure……and about 47% of the American people will believe the lies….so to me 2022 is not looking too good for the people of this nation.

I think they will lose control of the House if they do not pursue and get the minimum wage increase….and I am not alone…..

After the Democrats in the House approved a far-reaching Covid-19 relief package early Saturday with all but two members of the caucus on board, progressive anger and despair escalated over the Biden administration’s refusal thus far to make sure the $15 minimum wage increase remains in the bill as it heads to the U.S. Senate.

As journalist David Sirota, founder of The Daily Poster and former staffer for the 2020 Bernie Sanders presidential campaign, put it on Saturday: “If you were writing a Dickensian novel, it would be about millions of desperately poor people being promised a $15 starvation wage, and then watching their millionaire senators tell them that a parliamentary adviser in the palace said no.”

While Biden and his administration have made clear they will not move to use Harris’ authority as presiding officer of the Senate to disregard or overrule the Parliamentarian’s determination, the anger on the progressive left—both inside and outside of Congress—has only grown since Thursday.

https://www.commondreams.org/news/2021/02/28/democrats-will-lose-2022-if-15-wage-dies-senate-anger-grows-biden-harris-bow

Plus the GOP is working hard to suppress the vote in 43 of the 50 states.  If they succeed then many people will be eliminated from voting and that plays into the GOP win.

The more I watch our spineless Congress do their ‘work’ (a questionable term) I am more and more convinced that 2022 will be the end of a Dem majority in the House.

There is lots of ideas but yet their are members of caucus that have NO spine or consideration for the people they supposedly serve.

Unless they get their sh*t together they will go down in in a flaming defeat in 2022.

Do your part and make these worthless toads do something for the people and stop serving the special interests and their deep pockets.

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“lego ergo scribo”

Remember Gitmo?

NO?

It is a US prison on the island nation of Cuba.

Right now it is solely used as punishment for those accused of being “terrorists”.

Some are calling for the prison to close…..

The Guantánamo conundrum never seems to end.

Twelve years ago, I had other expectations. I envisioned a writing project that I had no doubt would be part of my future: an account of Guantánamo’s last 100 days. I expected to narrate in reverse, the episodes in a book I had just published, The Least Worst Place: Guantánamo’s First 100 Days, about—well, the title makes it all too obvious—the initial days at that grim offshore prison. They began on January 11, 2002, as the first hooded prisoners of the American war on terror were ushered off a plane at that American military base on the island of Cuba.

Needless to say, I never did write that book. Sadly enough, in the intervening years, there were few signs on the horizon of an imminent closing of that U.S. military prison. Weeks before my book was published in February 2009, President Barack Obama did, in fact, promise to close Guantánamo by the end of his first year in the White House. That hope began to unravel with remarkable speed. By the end of his presidency, his administration had, in fact, managed to release 197 of the prisoners held there without charges—many, including Mohamedou Ould Slahi, the subject of the film The Mauritanian, had also been tortured—but 41 remained, including the five men accused but not yet tried for plotting the 9/11 attacks. Forty remain there to this very day.

https://www.commondreams.org/views/2021/05/04/will-americas-forever-offshore-prison-ever-be-closed

I say NO…..the prison should remain open and the convicted of the 06 January insurrection should be given the maximum and fine and prison time and be sent to Gitmo.

Since these cowards are traitors and terrorists what better place than Gitmo for them to serve their time and think about the treason they committed.

Since our domestic prison system is overcrowded the use Gitmo the prison infrastructure is already available.

Let Gitmo serve the purpose that we have come to know and hate.

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“lego ergo scribo”

 

Does Terrorism Work?

From time to time I get papers written by grad students…..and the interesting ones I try to share with the readers IST…..

Just a few short years ago terrorism was all the buzz….today not so much……

Does terrorism work?

That is the question for the ages.

Some will say it does not….while others may disagree…..

This paper takes a look at the question…..

Terrorism is one of the most widely discussed issues in the twenty-first century due to the increasing terrorist occurrences and its destructive impacts, especially since the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. Terrorist incidences in the world reached its peak in 2014 with about 16,903 attacks leading to 32,658 fatalities (Global Terrorism Index, 2015). However, there was a fifty-two per cent reduction in the number of deaths associated with terrorist incidences in 2018 compared to 2014 (Global Terrorism Index, 2019). While there is a decline in the number of deaths attributed to terrorism, its impact remains prevalent. For instance, there is an upsurge in the number of countries that experienced terrorism in 2018 with at least one causality from seventy-one countries, which is the second highest in the past twenty years (Global Terrorism Index, 2019). The increasing nature of terrorist attacks has led to the intensification of scholarly interest in terrorism and terrorism-related issues. To this end, prior research has examined the definitions, causes, effects and strategies used by terrorist groups (Halliday, 2001; John, 2014; Elu and Gregory, 2015). However, it seems that the few studies that have examined the effectiveness of terrorism as a means of political struggle have been inconclusive.

In order to understand the reason for the continued existence of terrorism and its proliferation, it is crucial to examine if terrorism works, that is, if it achieves its stated objectives. This essay will contribute to the ongoing discussion on the effectiveness of terrorism by arguing that the answer to the question “Does terrorism work?” depends on our definition of “terrorism” and “work”. These concepts are a subject of debate, and as a result, there may not be one formula for measuring whether terrorism is effective. Thus, the success-level of terrorism is determined by various factors, especially by how it is evaluated. For example, while Dershowitz (2002:13) understands success in terms of attracting media attention and securing temporal concessions, Abrahms (2006:51) perceives it as the achievement the organisation’s central strategic objectives. Consequently, this essay will contend that although terrorist organisations rarely achieve their strategic goals, they often succeed in the achievement of other objectives.

Does Terrorism Work?

You tell me…does terrorism work?

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Is This Democracy?

May the Fourth Be With You!

Let me begin for those that cannot tear themselves from the game control long enough to grasp the idea of democracy.

The definition…..a system of government by the whole population or all the eligible members of a state, typically through elected representatives.

Nowhere is the word “democracy” mentioned in the Declaration of Independence or the U.S. Constitution. How could that be? Our government is a democracy!

The Founders actually feared democratic rule. James Madison expressed this attitude in Federalist #10: “…instability, injustice, and confusion …have in truth been the mortal disease under which popular governments everywhere perished…” In the late 18th-century, rule by the people was thought to lead to disorder and disruption. Yet a democratically-based government was seen as superior to the monarchies of Europe.

If this is true then why do we keep calling this country a democracy?

The GOP has gone down the rabbit hole of fascism and the Dems are so central that it is a party of spineless cowards.

What we have in this country is more like ‘democratic centralism’…..and yes a scary term….but how many know what it is?

democratic centralism,” a term made famous by Vladimir Ulyinov Lenin. As the leader of the Russian Revolution in 1917, he established a communist government that allowed no private property to exist. All members of society were theoretically equal. However, Lenin considered a small “vanguard of the revolution” necessary to guide the people and establish order. So a small group of leaders make decisions in the name of the people, based on their perceptions of what the people want and need.

A small group of leaders…..sound familiar?

We have a central government that is filled with elected reps and party hacks that decide what is best for the people….sadly none listen to the people after the election….then it becomes party politics and democracy be damn.

Democratic countries cherish individual freedom and generally believe that laws should not be repressive; a little order can be sacrificed in the name of liberty.

Repressive?

Is not a minority forcing their personal beliefs on the population a bit repressive?

I have asked in a past post…..https://gulfsouthfreepress.wordpress.com/2021/04/05/what-happened-to-the-social-contract/

So is this a democracy?

Some will say no it is not….we are a republic….if so then stop using the term ‘democracy’ or ‘democratic’.

PERIOD!

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Western Sahara 2021

This post will mean little to most readers….but it does to me and since this is my blog I will write on…..

I have written about the plight of the people of Western Sahara….https://lobotero.com/2018/04/30/western-sahara-update/

map of Western Sahara

My interests in Western Sahara is personal…..I was there in 1980s and fell in love with the desert and its people…..and ever since I have been watching the international tap-dance being done by the West to prevent the people from having their country back from Morocco.

According to a report from Axios, the Biden administration told Morroco that it would not reverse the Trump administration’s move to recognize Morrocan sovereignty over Western Sahara, which was Rabat’s reward for normalizing relations with Israel.

Sources told Axios that Secretary of State Antony Blinken conveyed the message to Moroccan Foreign Minister Nasser Bourita in a phone call on Friday. A State Department readout of the call did not mention Western Sahara but did say Blinken discussed Morroco’s relationship with Israel.

“The Secretary welcomed Morocco’s steps to improve relations with Israel and noted the Morocco-Israel relationship will bring long-term benefits for both countries,” the readout said.

The Trump administration recognized Moroccan sovereignty over Western Sahara in December 2020, making the US the first country to do so.

Morocco annexed Western Sahara after the Spanish withdrew from the region in 1975. Rabat then fought a war with the Polisario Front, a group that represents the indigenous Sahrawi people, to control the territory until a ceasefire was reached in 1991. Now there are fears that a new war is brewing. Last month, the Polisario Front said its police chief was killed in what could have been a Morrocan drone strike.

In 1976, the Polisario Front formed the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic (SADR), a de facto state in Western Sahara. The SADR is a member of the African Union and maintains diplomatic relations with about 40 UN member states. Currently, the SADR controls about 20 percent of Western Sahara, and Morocco controls the rest.

President Biden is following through on other Trump-era favors for Arab countries that took steps to normalize with Israel. Biden is going ahead with a massive $23 billion weapons package to the UAE that includes F-35 fighter jets, reaper drones, and missiles.

(antiwar.com)

Many of us writers are calling for a re-engagement internationally on the Western Sahara question and the plight of the people.

The long-dormant conflict between Morocco and the Polisario Front over the disputed Western Sahara territory is showing troubling signs of life. A Polisario blockade of a key artery in the UN-monitored buffer zone triggered a Moroccan military response, after which the Front called off a ceasefire and resumed attacks.

https://www.crisisgroup.org/middle-east-north-africa/north-africa/western-sahara/b82-time-international-re-engagement-western-sahara

The last guy as president made a crappy deal on Western Sahara and Biden will leave the deal in place.

Who should control Western Sahara? | The Economist

In the last move the Polisario of Western Sahara is demanded a seat in the UN….

The Polisario Western Sahara separatist group on Monday demanded a United Nations seat for the disputed territory and accused France and Spain of impeding a referendum on self-determination.

The status of Western Sahara, which the United Nations classifies as a “non-self-governing territory”, has for decades pitted Morocco against the separatist Polisario Front.

“The Sahrawi state claims its seat at the UN,” said Polisario foreign minister Ould Salek, on behalf the republic declared by the Polisario in 1976.

The republic, as a founding member of the African Union, “demands its rightful place” among world nations, he told a news conference in Algiers, allies of the Polisario.

https://english.alaraby.co.uk/english/news/2021/4/5/polisario-demands-un-seat-blasts-france-and-spain

It takes a special kind of hypocrite and spineless cowards to deny a people the right to self-determination.

The US is a prime kind of cowardice for it preaches democracy and never stands by the demands it makes….the right to self-determination is just a slogan that falls from American mouths.

New leadership is needed…and NOW!

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Food Porn

Food Porn is a glamorized visual presentation of cooking or eating in advertisements, infomercials, blogs, cooking shows or other visual media.

In other words it is photos of your meal that you share with the world through social media.

Who cares what you eat or cook?  Who?

I tried a food blog myself, Food Nazi, and soon realized that it was a waste of time…..no one wanted to know how to prepare the food just wanted cutsey photos that they could oh and ah over.

What purpose does this sort of ‘porn’ accomplish?  And why does a blogger get paid to show him/her eating?

I would rather watch grass grow (and that is being polite)…..

Most of this stuff shows very unhealthy foods…and it does nothing to help fight the growing problem of American obesity.

But why does this add to the problem?

In some cases food porn (specifically foods high in fat and sugar) has been shown to increase Ghrelin (the hunger hormone). It’s also been found to stimulate the prefrontal cortex and the insula – two key components of the brain which are involved in reward and decision making. There’s also a suggestion that images of #food porn could stimulate cue-induced eating. This could mean that those who engage with more food porn have a greater risk of consuming larger amounts of high sugar, high fat foods.

Why do these vision help create a problem?

  • Food porn increases hunger. Viewing images of desirable foods provokes your appetite. In one study, participants watched a seven-minute restaurant review that was riddled with pancakes, waffles, hamburgers and other diner staples. This led to increased hunger ratings among not only participants who hadn’t eaten for a while but also among those who had just finished a meal.
  • Food porn promotes unhealthy food. Many of the recipes that top chefs make on television are high in calories and use unhealthful ingredients. This has been proven through systematic analysis of TV chefs’ recipes, which tend to be much higher in fat, saturated fat and sodium. While fewer than half of viewers went on to actually make those recipes at home, the concern is that the foods we see being made, and the food portions we see being served on TV may set norms for what we consider appropriate.
  • The more food porn you view, the higher your body mass index (BMI). Spence notes that the link is only correlational, not causal, but it’s still noteable that people who watch more food TV have a higher BMI.
  • Food porn drains mental resources. Whenever we view images of food, our brains can’t help but engage in mental simulation — we imagine ourselves eating that food. We therefore need to expend some mental resources to resist all of these virtual temptations. In other words, we can’t get the thought of eating that food out of our heads after we see it, and in a lot of cases, we’re going to choose the unhealthful food over a more nutritious choice.

The one thing that I can still do t my age is use my mind…..I refuse to do anything that would lessen the process and food porn is one of those worthless endeavors.

I mentioned my idle food blog, Food Nazi and if anyone is interested in the short lived attempt…https://thefoodnazi.wordpress.com/

Enjoy your Sunday…..

Be well….Be safe….

“lego ergo scribo”

 

Those Humiliating Surrenders

The weekend and what better time to throw some history at you?

The one thing that every commander hopes he/she never has to perform….a total surrender to the enemy….there have been ten surrenders that were extremely embarrassing and humiliating…..

On April 13, 1861, the US Army installation known as Fort Sumter located at Charleston Harbor, South Carolina, surrendered to the rebellious forces of the fledgling Confederate States of America after a bombardment. The next day, the fort was surrendered to the Confederates with no men killed on either side. While the armed forces of the United States have been overwhelmingly successful over the course of many wars and conflicts, there have been those inevitable times with failure has resulted in the humiliating surrender of American military personnel and/or installations or ships. Today we address some of the most humiliating such incidents. Feel free to nominate other such incidents that we could have included on our list. (There is no significance to the order in which the incidents are listed.)

1. Fort Sumter, 1861.

Fort Sumter was built in response to the War of 1812 as part of the effort to protect the American coast against foreign invaders.  It was not really completed when South Carolina became the first state to secede in 1860, although the fort was fairly imposing at it was.  The garrison of 85 Union soldiers were faced by about 600 Confederates, and the prospect of constant bombardment with no way of reinforcing the fort or replying in a meaningful way.  The supplies of food were also dwindling.  An attempt to resupply the fort by an unarmed merchant ship was stopped by Confederate shore batteries.  After a day of bombardment, Major Robert Anderson saw no reason to get his men killed with no hope of victory and surrendered his fort.  The Battle of Fort Sumter is usually regarded as the first battle of the American Civil War, an inauspicious beginning for the Union.

10 Most Humiliating American Surrenders

Any thoughts?

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Class Dismissed!

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

May Day 2021

AS the weekend begins IST would like to look at the day workers get international recognition for the contributions to society.

Commemoration of the May Day

It is 01 May and the International Workers Day……and May Day has a long history and not all of it deals with the workers…..

The Celts of the British Isles believed May 1 to be the most important day of the year, when the festival of Beltane was held.

This May Day festival was thought to divide the year in half, between the light and the dark. Symbolic fire was one of the main rituals of the festival, helping to celebrate the return of life and fertility to the world.

When the Romans took over the British Isles, they brought with them their five-day celebration known as Floralia, devoted to the worship of the goddess of flowers, Flora. Taking place between April 20 and May 2, the rituals of this celebration were eventually combined with Beltane.

https://www.history.com/topics/holidays/history-of-may-day

But these days the mention of May Day conjures up  visions of the workers and unions and dare I say….socialism.

For me it conjures up memories of the historical event that has become known as the Haymarket Riot….

The Haymarket Riot (also known as the “Haymarket Incident” and “Haymarket Affair”) occurred on May 4, 1886, when a labor protest rally near Chicago’s Haymarket Square turned into a riot after someone threw a bomb at police. At least eight people died as a result of the violence that day. Despite a lack of evidence against them, eight radical labor activists were convicted in connection with the bombing. The Haymarket Riot was viewed as a setback for the organized labor movement in America, which was fighting for rights like the eight-hour workday. At the same time, many in the labor movement viewed the convicted men as martyrs.

https://www.history.com/topics/19th-century/haymarket-riot

This event is the beginning of the use of “Anarchy” as something derogatory and synonymous with chaos. (A post to follow soon…..watch for it)….

As typical the powers decided that labor was to blame and since those days they try to dismantle the labor movement….and have been successful to a point….

May Day in the 'city of joy', Kolkata

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“lego ergo scribo”