Monday, August 30, 2010

People Not Worth The Price Of The Gunpowder Needed To Blow Them To Hell Aug 10 Edition

August of 2010 has been a month to remember, for all the wrong reasons. I begin with least offensive or most offensive? So hard, they are all so very, very offensive. I can't decide, so they will simply be as they come to me.

1. Morrissey: What the Hell? Everyone agrees that Chinese law allows horrible abuse of animals, he's got a point, but to then suddenly draw this Nazi-like conclusion that the Chinese are some sort of subspecies of human because of this?

Morrissey, you are a racist dumbass. These sort of hyperbolic, nasty remarks set your cause back. People instinctively run away from even good causes when they are championed by kooks.

Oh, and Morrissey, as the son of Irish Catholic immigrants to England, you should be doubly ashamed.

"They use their fields mostly for pasture. Little is cultivated and even less is sown. The problem here is not the quality of the soil but rather the lack of industry on the part of those who should cultivate it. This laziness means that the different types of minerals with which hidden veins of the earth are full are neither mined nor exploited in any way. They do not devote themselves to the manufacture of flax or wool, nor to the practice of any mechanical or mercantile act. Dedicated only to leisure and laziness, this is a truly barbarous people. They depend on their livelihood for animals and they live like animals."

Written by Gerard Of Wales, a chronicler who visited Ireland with Prince John. You know, Richard the Lionheart's brother who became king in 1199? The English have had some kind of theory about YOUR people's genetic inferiority for a very, very long time.

2. Glenn Beck: You are not oppressed. You are not Martin Luther King. What you are doing is your damnedest to fleece your audience of the ignorant, the racist, the terrified into a 21st century Beer Hall Putsch. You are a deluded, dishonest, and dangerous man.

3. Pastor Terry Jones: Pastor of the Dove Outreach Church in Florida. Author of Islam Is Of The Devil. Organizer of the Quran burning scheduled for 9/11. Watch him in action while I go throw up.

4. Arizona Governor Jan Brewer: Racial profiling as law. Beheadings in the desert?? Lying about her own father's death? Privatized prisons that hold killers in medium security so they can easily escape?

5. Minority Leader Mitch McConnell: There are so many reasons, but the latest, and worst so far is wanting to change the 14th Amendment so children of illegal immigrants are not citizens. And just how would we do this, Mitch? Will you ask for the parents papers as the mother is in the delivery room? What if one parent is legal and one is not? What is the baby then? Would all children someday have to earn their citizenship like in Starship Troopers?

6. All Kentuckians voting for Rand Paul.

7. Sharron Angle.

8. All Nevadans voting for Sharron Angle.

9. Jorhan Van Der Sloot: Not only did he kill a second girl in Peru, he extorted money out of Natalee Holloway's grieving family who hoped he could lead them to her body. He gave them a bogus spot and kept the money.

"I wanted to get back at Natalee's family – her parents have been making my life tough for five years," the paper quoted him as saying from prison in Peru. "When they offered to pay for the girl's location, I thought: 'Why not'?"

10. Those fools driving a missile around Ground Zero in opposition to the Park51 center.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Riding Those Dinosaurs

Back when I was a college freshman, I learned something important that was not in my actual curriculum, but a life lesson. This life lesson learned came from watching my fellow students struggle through classes that covered topics I had learned freshman year in high school, and were often discussed at the dinner table in my home. The American Education system is not simply greatly unequal in terms of quality between rich and poor districts, but also influenced, and run by people who haven't the slightest idea of what produces adults who fully comprehend the world they will someday control.

It was glaringly obvious in our World History classes, some people had never had anything other than an American History class. They didn't know who Hannibal was, other than the character from the A-Team, thought China was always communist, had never heard of the Ottoman Empire, and were shocked that democracy was not begun in the United States. All good things come only from the USA, you know.

I am still uncertain what shocked me the most, that they didn't know these simple facts or that many didn't want to know. It was boring. It had no bearing on their life today. It wouldn't help them get a job, so why bother? The sad, sad fact is that at some point in the last, maybe thirty years, American universities, and high schools, as well, became a factory line for cranking out drones. Go to high school, get a job. Go to college, get a better job.

The entire track is training, not educating. Our schools, don't teach civics, hell, they barely teach art and music, and many places there is a shortage of gym teachers. The pretty much long gone, and sexist home ec. at least used to give lessons on how to manage a household. Depictions of it on television seemed to concentrate on cooking classes, but that is misleading. Yes, they taught them, but also nutrition, child development, sewing, and most importantly, managing your money.

We no longer think it important to teach children how to manage their money.

Once upon a time, we taught high schoolers something called civics! A class that taught them about types of government, and the rights and duties of citizens! Personally, I never had such a class it was a dinosaur by the time I was in high school-I got these lessons at home. Don't even start me on the subject of sex education.

So are we reaping the whirlwind of our short-sightedness, and anti-intellectualism today? The overall ignorance isn't openly insane like the Creationists who think the Earth is 10,000 years old, and Jesus rode dinosaurs. They are kooks, but what is worse is what has been done by sane school boards, and administrators. That is, the whittling away of classes that teach you how to live, and critically think, not simply work for some corporate overlord, is dangerous.

An angry, threatened, population that does not comprehend how it fell into economic hard times, or who is to blame, always seems to lash out, looking for a scapegoat. And things such as this happen.

And if you know your history...what does this scene bring to mind?