TFOG Preorder

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Whoa. One of those days when nothing starts. Or doesn’t stop. Or something.

After killing every idea for a post today, including dismissing some lingering drafts, I’ll just give you this:

Preorder The Fall of Gondolin from Amazon.

Or not… Hubba. Working on fidning that “right” idea for today. This may be it.

Tomorrow!

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Video on the Students and the Schools

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A video to round out (or make) an unintentional trio of academic stories today. Please watch:

Perrin Lovett/YouTube.

Subscribe on YT, share, etc.

Click HERE to get that cool FP t-shirt:

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The videos are getting easier and more fun to create. Thanks to all that are signing on. With you good folks, the FP diehards, and our new TPC friends, this thing could take off. Stefan, check that rear view mirror!

More to come.

The Who and Socrates Together At Last!

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More today from TPC’s C.F. Floyd Feature Writer of National Affairs, the second of what will surely become a sought-after nationally syndicated column:

The “New” Students: Intellectually Incurious? or Intellectual Curiosity?

…The scene was much the same as it is, here and now, in ancient Athens: “The children now love luxury. They have bad manners, contempt for authority; they show disrespect for elders and love chatter in place of exercise.” So said Socrates, a man somewhat familiar with the youth and their educational endeavors.

Latter day academics continue to observe the various faults of humanity as expressed (or repressed) through the lives of American college students. Twenty five centuries and no change?

Current teachers say the kids are “situationally confused,” sharing no “intellectual curiosity.” Theirs, we’re told, is a listlessly drifting life of boredom, confusion, and constant sexual activity. A former Yale professor of English felt the crisis so compelling that he disavowed the Ivy League. A UVA professor of Christian studies describes the academy as a “sexual free-for-all.”

As inhibitions of the flesh evaporate, resistance to challenging perception and thought seems to grow. …

Read all at TPC. This one with touching tribute to the real C.F. Floyd!

TPC

TPC.

Walter Williams on the Fraud of American Education

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“Fraud” is the right word. The right “F” word, even more than “failed” or that other one.

The results from the 2017 National Assessment of Educational Progress,  America’s “Report Card,” are staggering:

It’s not a pretty story. Only 37 percent of 12th-graders tested proficient or better in reading, and only 25 percent did so in math. Among black students, only 17 percent tested proficient or better in reading, and just 7 percent reached at least a proficient level in math.

The atrocious NAEP performance is only a fraction of the bad news. Nationally, our high school graduation rate is over 80 percent. That means high school diplomas, which attest that these students can read and compute at a 12th-grade level, are conferred when 63 percent are not proficient in reading and 75 percent are not proficient in math. For blacks, the news is worse. Roughly 75 percent of black students received high school diplomas attesting that they could read and compute at the 12th-grade level. However, 83 percent could not read at that level, and 93 percent could not do math at that level. It’s grossly dishonest for the education establishment and politicians to boast about unprecedented graduation rates when the high school diplomas, for the most part, do not represent academic achievement. At best, they certify attendance.

Summarized in a sentence: Two-thirds of American high school graduates are functionally illiterate. This should shock and dismay more than just the writing set.

The people almost seem okay with this. It’s like another great George Carlin skit:

Carlin/YouTube.

America’s national average IQ is falling decade by decade. This even as the children suffer more and more “education.” Some, like Georgia’s potential next Governor, Stacey Abrams (a great fiction writer, BTW), want universal, “free” college for everyone. What’s the point. Why go to college or even to high school if the result is a majority that can’t read or do basic math?

Various peoples of the older world had less formal education but were on average smarter than modern Americans. Such was the case in Victorian England. The verbosity and concomitant popularity of Varney the Vampire bears this out: what would be a “difficult” read by today’s low standards was immensely popular with the street urchin, drop-out boys and young men on the streets of 19th century London. Why? How?

It’s not definitively provable but it is suspected that the average IQ in Plato’s Athens was around 125 (SB or Wechsler) – 2 standard deviations above America’s average today (maybe three above tomorrow…). That was the average, with half being even higher. How many standardized tests were those kids back then subjected to? None, likely.

And as our system continues to fail and to fail more spectacularly, the only answer from the establishment is more and more of the same.

We’ll get more of the same on all fronts. More fraud. More failure. Look for it in next year’s report card.

Possibly Explanation for the Toronto Attack

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I think they refer to this as “Gamma Rage.”

Alek Minassian, 25, was charged on Tuesday with 10 counts of murder and 13 counts of attempted murder.

Police say he appeared to intentionally strike pedestrians after mounting a busy pavement in a rental van.

He was arrested several blocks away after a tense standoff with police.

Mr Minassian’s Facebook post, which the social network has confirmed as real, praised Elliott Rodger , a 22 year old from California who killed six people in a shooting rampage through Isla Vista, California in 2014 before turning the gun on himself.

It read: “The Incel Rebellion has already begun! We will overthrow all the Chads and Stacys! All hail the Supreme Gentleman Elliot Rodger!”

The term “incel” refers to a now-banned group on the message site Reddit, used by Rodger, where young men discussed their lack of sexual activity and attractiveness to women – often blaming women for the problem.

“Chads and Stacys” refers to attractive men and women who are perceived as better than or unavailable to “incels”, which is short for “involuntary celibate”.

A different type of terrorism and “loser” by a different name.

Just a glance at a picture of either Rodger or Minassian reveals it may not, in fact, be all women’s fault. There’s that look. And that one. A shame these two killers couldn’t have “found each other” before people died.

Neuroscience is making great progress in identifying these types. The defects apparently show up in a genetic test, a brain scan, or both.

The Fall of Gondolin

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You can’t keep a good author down. Even if he’s been dead for nearly half a century. Later this year we can look forward to another new masterpiece by J.R.R. Tolkien: The Fall of Gondolin:

HarperCollins has announced that it will, for the very first time, publish The Fall of Gondolin on 30 August this year.

Edited by Christopher Tolkien and illustrated by Alan Lee, The Fall of Gondolin will follow the same format as Beren and Lúthien published last year, separating out the story so that it stands alone while showing how the narrative evolved over the years. This is the first time the tale of the Fall of Gondolin will be published as a standalone edition, collecting all versions of the story together.

Responding to the news, Tolkien Society chair, Shaun Gunner, said:

We never dared to dream that we would see this published. The Fall of Gondolin is, to many in the Tolkien community, the Holy Grail of Tolkien texts as one of Tolkien’s three Great Tales alongside The Children of Húrin and Beren and Lúthien. This beautiful story captures the rise and fall of a great Elven kingdom, taking place millennia before the events of The Lord of the Rings. This book brings all the existing work together in one place to present the story in full.

Let’s hope it’s more like The Children of Hurin (a full story) and maybe less like Beren and Luthien (a full telling of how a story developed). The potential is epic.

For the Hobbit and LOTR readers, this is the ancient, crown jewel Noldorin civilization mentioned briefly in those works (and also in TCOH). For Peter Jackson movie fans, say five Hail Marys and go read those books. All: get a preview from The Silmarillion and Unfinished Tales.

The short story Of Tuor and His Coming to Gondolin (UT) set the stage but was, sadly, never finished. Let’s hope this book does it.

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Tolkien/Lee.

Four Questions For The Concerned Gun Toter

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With all the hubbub about guns lately – record ownership, record crime stopping, and record concealed carry – I get asked more than a few times about carry laws, rules, and faux pas. Simply put: look those laws up and/or consult a good local attorney; they vary from state to state.

Still I get pressed about things like: carrying in cars, across state lines, loaded, unloaded, disclosure to the cops, etc., etc., etc. It happened yesterday – queried by a fellow who already has a CCW. You, Mr. Law Abiding Citizen, follow the rules and your conscience.

And stop the obsessive worry. The odds of a negative LEO encounter are slightly marginal at best. I pose four easy questions to put this in perspective (inquiries are frequently vehicular in nature, hence number 2):

One. How old are you?

Two. How long have you been driving?

Three. How many times have you ever been stopped by the police?

Four. How many times have you been searched?

The nearly universal answer to number four is “zero.” And there you have your effective chances of future problems.

Keep calm and carry on.

I Was Wrong About Guns

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This is embarrassing, really, but it is important to correct one’s errors. I apologize in advance if I’ve misled anyone.

For a long time I’ve been countering hysterical, communist gun control lies with a set of statistics. Chief among them was the claim that guns save roughly 1 million American lives each year. That’s simply not true.

They save 2 MILLION. Every. Single. Year. 

 

The CDC said so (or would have, if they didn’t have an agenda):

An unpublished Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) study confirms Florida State University criminologist Gary Kleck’s findings of more than two million defensive handgun uses (DGUs) per year.

Since the early 1990s, Kleck has maintained that there is a minimum of 760,000 DGUs annually. That is his low estimate; Kleck and research partner Marc Gertz have contended the actual number is closer to 2.5 million.

Kleck reaffirmed his numbers on February 17, 2015, explaining that while plenty of naysayers have criticized his findings, none have been able to offer empirical evidence to counter them.

Now, a CDC study conducted on data from 1996, 1997, and 1998 has been uncovered. The study, which was never released to the public, shows approximately 2.46 million DGUs per year.

Or it is 2.5 Million? Regardless, this was a government study so it cannot be questioned. The failure to publish can’t really be criticized either – the agenda and all.

In my defense I settled on the erroneous 1 million out of an abundance of statistical caution. It seemed a safe round off point. Now that I know better, it’s 2 million from now on. That’s about one life saved, one defensive usage, every 15 seconds. I wonder if Young Hogg will mention that in his forthcoming book? Guessing, and I could be wrong, that’s a big “no.”

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Breitbart.

Nine Dead in Toronto Van Assault

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At least nine people are reported dead after an assailant drove a rental van down a sidewalk in Toronto. From the National Post:

The federal public safety minister says there is no information in the wake of the incident that would lead the government to change the country’s risk level.

Canada’s current level is Medium, meaning that a violent act of terrorism could occur, and has been at this level since October 2014.

Public safety minister Ralph Goodale says the government cannot come to any firm conclusions about the van incident at this stage.

Toronto Mayor John Tory said he planned to join those on scene as he extended city support to the investigation of an incident he described as “very tragic.”

“My thoughts are with those affected by this incident and the frontline responders who are working to help those injured,” he said in a statement.

Medium. Violent attack could happen. Looks like they called that one right. Thoughts by but no prayers in Secular City.

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Canadian Press/Frank Gunn.

See also:

The Sun;

CBS

What we know:

No motive yet, say police.

G7 meeting in town today.

Ryder van.

Driver fled, then resisted arrest.

Driver had gun in gun-controlled Canada.

Nine Dead.

Super-PC city and country.

Most diverse city in Canada (47% foreign born, 51% “visible” minority [51% seems majority to me…], 40% Asian, to include Middle Easterners, Islam second largest religion).

Diversity + Proximity = War. It’s hard to have diversity without DIE.

People talk about “tasty ethnic foods.” The ones not run down might eat some later.

If terror, then suspect was known to authorities.

No calls for #vancontrol from Trudeau, Hogg, CNN, Old Man Stevens, or any of the other lying commies. I may have to drop that satire; I’m growing confident that, after #knifecontrol, vehicular controls will be next.

Maybe I don’t need the satire anyway. A look through many of the comments on some news stories tells me people are starting to get it.

Developing…