My latest at TPC: on the illegals, the kids, etc.:
My latest at TPC: on the illegals, the kids, etc.:
This one really wraps up several pressing issues, particularly toward the end and in the notes I added:
The CDC reports strong growth in suicide rates nationwide over the past generation. These rates are up 30% in half the states. Self-inflicted demise is now the tenth leading cause of death in our country. This, at a time of supposed peace, prosperity, and economic growth. 54% of the recent suicides were by persons with no previously known mental disorder. No age, race, situation, or condition seems immune. Look through that report; odds are you’ll be staggered.
The venerable CDC suggests what can be done about the trend. I see good, bad, and incomplete in their advice. At a superficial level, they get it right about life stress being a major factor. Their solutions, some of them I think, are perhaps a little misplaced.
“Making sure government, public health, healthcare, employers, education, the media and community organizations are working together is important for preventing suicide.”
– CDC, Overview.
That certainly sounds fine and well. But, what if the government, the “public” health, and all those institutions are contributing to the problem? Contributing to all that stress, consternation, and perplexity. Then what?
And, by fiction, for once I don’t mean a goofy political poem. A short, short story:
It was as delightful a late-October afternoon as anyone could want, cooler and quieter than most. Wendell “Dell” Hubbard looked out the office window as the leaves shimmered in a breeze, their autumnal transformation slowly proceeding. It was a great afternoon, a great Friday afternoon. So far as Wendell knew he was the last man in the building. Friday’s usually meant leaving a little early. And now it was a little late – five past five. ‘No rush,’ he thought as his gaze returned to the stack of files on his desk. His blushing bride and her sister were held up at the family beach house for the weekend. He could afford to take it easy. Stay a little longer. Get a little more done. Later, perhaps, a cigar and a little Scotch was in order.
*Is this the beginning of the Dell Hubbard chronicles? Who knows?
**TPC fans: the National Affairs shall return in force next week.
Last week’s TPC column on high schools and its predecessor generated heavy readership and commentary. The people, some of them having direct experience in the government prison schools, raised a myriad of issues even I hadn’t thought of – from expenses to parent disinterest to fidget spinners. All seemed willing to explore options in search of real education.
In furtherance thereof, here’s a piece from LRC, today, on Ron Paul’s Curriculum:
Of course many parents choose homeschooling as a means of protecting their children from federal education “reforms” such as Common Core. Other parents are motivated by a desire to protect their children from the cultural Marxism that has infiltrated many schools.
The spread of cultural Marxism has contributed to the dumbing down of public education. Too many government schools are more concerned with promoting political correctness than ensuring that students receive a good education. Even if cultural Marxism did not dumb down education, concerns that government schools are indoctrinating children with beliefs that conflict with parents’ political, social, and even religious beliefs would motivate many families to homeschool.
Even when government schools are not intentionally promoting cultural Marxism or other left-wing ideologies, they are still implicitly biased toward big government. For example, how many government schools teach the Austrian economics explanation for the Great Depression — much less question the wisdom of central banking — or critically examine the justifications for America’s hyper-interventionist foreign policy?
Another installment of TPC cometh tomorrow – and of a totally different make than the usual. Stay tuned.
Solutions for better, education abound.
From today’s TPC bit:
Today, some good news. Great news. Last week, in PART ONE of this series, we examined the dreadful state of the existing public high schools. The state spends a small fortune per student and then produces horrific academic results, even by its own watered-down standards. And, the kids have the luxury of experiencing this fraud while suffering prison conditions to shock the Nuremberg prosecutors.
I promised I’d be back this week with solutions. We’re about to get to those. First, it occurred to me that this short series on education just happens to coincide with graduation schedules. This is a coincidence, I suppose. I also suppose we can graduate to something better.
The problems in the schools result from many factors. But, they are mostly the product of a never-ending series of increasingly heavy-handed laws, regulations, and rules. Students, parents, taxpayers, and those who enjoy intelligent civil society keep trading one liberty after another in exchange for fake security that resembles illiterate, zero tolerance fraud and little else. The trouble boils down to, in a word: “tyranny.”
The solution, in a word, is “freedom.”
The Addison Gallery of American Art, Fall Opening, 2013, Andover.
Somewhat fitting with this being graduation season. Yesterday’s TPC piece on schooling, part one of two:
The top ten schools in several categories are front and center in the USN report. There is other good performance outside the upper extreme, such as one school I found in a large Floridian city: 96% graduation rate; 64.4% college readiness; 84% AP participation with 69% success; and 71% reading and 66% math proficiency.
That school ranks 29th among all Florida schools and 343rd in the nation. However, this “best” school still graduates 96% of students when 29% are not reading at the level and 34% have trouble with arithmetic. It makes one wonder. It should make one suspicious.
Then, there are the “worst” schools. I skewered them recently in a related article. Please pardon any caustic effect therein. The worst offender districts spend more money than the average while delivering single-digit proficiency results. I think it’s safe to say “fraud” again.
The situation, the fraud is much worse than just poor test results. The whole basis and structure of the public schools in this country is so out of touch with American values that placing children in many or most of our schools is tantamount to child abuse. Seriously. The American model, in many states, is built on the fraud and historic bigotry of Blaine Amendment meddling. A beginning based on hating Catholics. Then, segregation and the hampering of black achievement. Next, integration, both of students and of plans to lower expectations and results. No free thinking citizens produced, just barely competent and obedient worker drone units. That was then. Now, the schools have become prisons.
I’ve been to more than a few schools recently. And I’ve been in more jails and prisons (on professional business…) than the average. There really is little difference. To convert a prison into a school, just add some desks. To make a school into a literal prison, just add bars to the windows. Beyond the physical similarities, there is congruence in the treatment of the inmates. And, in many places, the students literally have fewer rights, less freedom that prisoners of war under the Geneva Convention. Click here, read, and think about the application of these principles to your child’s school: Basic Rules and Protocols. In addition to suspicious, you should now be getting angry.
A Piece by Contributing Writer Perrin Lovett
Special to The Chronicles
Like with a really bad drug trip, there’s a disconnect with reality when it comes to liberals and guns in America. Despite Americans being the most heavily armed people in the world and concurrently being among the safest, most responsible people in the world, some on the left just don’t get it. The safest of the safe, the most competent of gun owners, tend to be members of the National Rifle Association.
Yet, whenever something bad happens … or is contrived, the NRA gets undue blame. For instance: a few weeks ago an older, out-of-touch, politically-motivated Georgia man penned his sly emotional sentiment: “the NRA has taken over”. I didn’t hear him audibly say it, but I imagine his tone and inflection was something like Palpatine’s “the Jedi are taking over!” Same sort of lie and motivation.
He claimed that 80% of Americans, including gun owners, want more “common sense” gun control. When one hears a gun controller call for “common sense,” one can safely assume the caller has none.
As best I can tell, his touted percentage comes from an informal poll among select NPR listeners. Something tells me not to trust the figure. NPR took their poll shortly after the Parkland, Florida high school shooting. Gallup also ran a post-Parkland poll, among teachers, and only found 33% support for more “common sense” nonsense. I’m even suspicious of those findings, especially given the hysteria associated with Parkland.
Of course, we know little about that particular crime, except that the NRA was not involved in any way, shape, or form. (Come to think of it, the NRA and its members are never involved in any mass shootings and very few crimes in general. Hmm…). We do know that government keeps changing the official narrative, in evolving CYA fashion.
Title 40 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to motor vehicles and traffic, so as to prohibit actions which distract a driver while operating a motor vehicle; to provide for the proper and safe use of wireless telecommunications devices and stand-alone electronic devices while driving; to provide for definitions; to prohibit certain actions while operating a commercial motor vehicle; to provide for violations; to provide for punishment …
In brief, they don’t want Georgians holding mobile phones while talking, texting, or emailing. The viewing of and recording of videos is also prohibited. Safe use. Punishment. Control. Obey.
The vote, in both houses of the Generally Useless Assembly, was a wonder of that thing they call bipartisanship. The Act passed the House, 144-18 (with several members loafing about elsewhere); in the Senate, only one decent man had the nerve to stand up against mob hysteria.
Safety is a big seller when it comes to laws. I wanted to quote Ben Franklin here, but we’ll not wear out the liberty/safety trade line. Here’s an older admonition, seemingly ratified by “your” representatives:
“Only a few prefer liberty, the majority seek nothing more than fair masters.”
The more things change, the more they stay the same.
Today’s column at TPC is out:
A Piece by Perrin Lovett, C.F. Floyd Feature Writer of National Affairs
“It was downright embarrassing. Especially for me. Perrin Lovett, the gun guy, … was wrong about guns. I was wrong for the better part of two decades. Horribly wrong.
Specifically, I had been citing a rounded, general statistic: 1 million defensive gun uses every year in America (sometimes phrased as a million lives saved every year by guns). It was a very handy number to refute the claims by various gun control freaks that guns take X number of lives per year (usually in the 10,000 – 30,000 range). It was an order of magnitude of positive difference. And it was dead wrong.
Guns do not save 1 million lives each year in America.
They save 2.5 million lives. The CDC says so. Well, they say it quietly and only when pushed. You see, dear readers, the CDC did a study from 1996 through 1998. They discovered 2.46 million defensive gun uses each year. With inflation, let’s call it 2.5 million. Every. Single. Year.
*Please like, share, comment, and demand your local paper start carrying the column (they may inquire here).
A video to round out (or make) an unintentional trio of academic stories today. Please watch:
Subscribe on YT, share, etc.
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.