Quid Rides? De te Fabula Narratur

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Archive for the ‘Education’ Category

Of Mandatory Sentencing and Minimum Intelligence

Posted by Anthony on April 25, 2017

Something about those who do not remember the past…

One has to give credit where credit is due: despite some flip-flops in certain areas, those whom the Trump Administration has chosen to spearhead its efforts in many other departments have shown themselves enthusiastic scions of the MAGA culture. Rex Tillerson, at a horribly depleted State, has shown he is quite incapable of conducting any foreign policy (all the better to leave it to Mr.Trump), Betsy DeVos can’t even get them to spell “education” correctly on the department’s Snapchat, and Jeff Sessions has come out with a determined effort towards changing the way business as usual is conducted at Justice. At least as far as drugs go; when it comes to violence against minorities, that’s just fine.

What we are talking about here of course is the recent espousal by the Sessions lead Justice Department of minimum sentencing laws and the re-ramping up of the “War on Drugs”. There are so many things wrong with this effort that it would easily take the better part of a weekend to write out the flaws, but since brevity is the soul of wit we shall endeavor to do so in as minimal a space as might be possible.

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Posted in Americas, Culture, Economics, Education, Politics, Religion | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

The Moral Imperative to Destroy ISIS

Posted by Anthony on July 20, 2015

This is an article which I had been planning, and wanting, to write for some time. The issue isn’t what to write about or how to present the facts; rather, my concern here was that I would not be able to restrain myself from lashing out in an overly emotional morality infused rage before I even got to the mid-point of the writing. Surely, if anyone can bring that out in abundance it is ISIS.

Comparing ISIS to other historical organizations is not entirely fair. For example, to bring up the Nazi regime is to insult the memory of the tens-of-millions of deaths that abomination was responsible for both directly (through their racial policies and the Holocaust) and, well, directly by starting the Second World War. In this regard, ISIS is, as President Obama referred to them, “the JV team”. Their death toll pales in comparison to regimes such as that which existed under Stalin in the Soviet Union, Mao in China (who may well hold the record for deaths), the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia under Pol Pot which, although much lower on the scale for total deaths must be recognized for the absolute barbarity of the regime, or even any of the more localized genocides such as the Hutu extermination of Tutsis in Rwanda. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Africa, Americas, Culture, Economics, Education, Europe, Middle East, Politics, Religion, South Asia, Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Who Thought Vaccines Were an Option?

Posted by Anthony on February 4, 2015

 

As we have just turned over a new year (well, for those following the Gregorian calendar in any case), it is always a good idea to take stock of where we are, how the past year has been, and where we’re going from here. I had a discussion the other day with a friend who asked about how much longer I thought the human race would manage to keep itself on the universal stage. An interesting question, to be sure, since it requires one to contemplate any number of the myriad situations that might bring about the extinction of humanity (even if not rendering the Earth a lifeless globe). Some are, of course, beyond anything we can stop: a rogue black hole finding its way into the Solar System, or a Gamma Ray Burst that happens to annihilate the atmosphere. Some, however, are preventable even if to certain degrees: we could, for example, take measures to stop an asteroid from obliterating our planet though it would require a tremendous effort and cost, just as we could make the inevitably required move off of our planet and either onto Mars, the most likely candidate as a planet, or to a ring-world of sorts, which is not nearly as fantastical as it might seem. Read the rest of this entry »

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The Merit Pay Problem

Posted by Anthony on May 20, 2009

By Anthony J. Aschettino

Most Americans like it when the media can reduce any complex idea to a catchy phrase or word, since it relieves them of having to confront the intricacies of navigating policy. Take, for example, the idea that better teachers should earn more money than their counterparts. The media and policy makers have happily reduced that concept to the term “merit pay”, which sounds nice and logical; after all, shouldn’t teachers who are more proficient at their trade end up with a larger check to thank them for their role in helping improve education in America? Read the rest of this entry »

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Evolution as Reality

Posted by Anthony on December 8, 2008

By Anthony J. Aschettino

It has been eighty-three years since the landmark “Scopes Monkey Trial” in Tennessee brought a legal challenge to that state’s Butler Act which effectively banned the teaching of evolution in public schools. Although John Scopes, the teacher and defendant in the trial, lost, it set in motion a long process that culminated in 1968 with the Supreme Court ruling in Epperson v. Arkansas that such laws as the Butler Act violated the Establishment Clause. While that should have been the end of the story, those who oppose the teaching of evolution have never really stopped trying to undermine the Constitution in their efforts to reintroduce the teaching of Biblical Creationism in the classrooms of America’s schools. Their latest efforts focus on nebulous ideas such as “intelligent design” and seemingly democratic ideals in phrases like “teach the controversy”. They have mostly faced setbacks, but they have had their victories as well and it remains to be seen if they will succeed in their labors to roll back the clock on science education in this country. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Culture, Education, Religion, Science | 1 Comment »

The Case for History

Posted by Anthony on October 7, 2008

By Anthony J. Aschettino

One of the first obligations of any society, immediately after such a thing as ensuring the safety of the society, should be looking after the welfare of the next generation. This impulse can be seen at all levels of any civilized society: parents (or at least any parent worth their salt) will gladly give their life to protect their children, and of all the crimes humans may commit against one another the lowest ranks in our prisons are reserved for those who have committed offenses against children. Read the rest of this entry »

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