Haha! I think I’m a person born in the wrong century . . . trans-temporal?
Archive for the 'Dictatorship' Category
Nearly 80 percent of New York City high school graduates need to relearn basic skills before they can enter the City University’s community college system.Posted in Educational Freedom on March 14th, 2013
Asylum seekers: the term conjures up images of desperate families fleeing impoverished, war-torn countries.
But the Romeike family, who live in the US state of Tennessee, are not ordinary asylum seekers. Devout Christians from southwestern Germany, the Romeikes say they will be persecuted if they are made to return because their five children are homeschooled – which is forbidden in the European Union’s most populous country.
Next month, an American appeals court will hear oral arguments on whether they should be allowed to stay, in a case legal experts say will help clarify the scope of US asylum law.
Uwe and Hannelore Romeike, both music teachers, decided to take their children out of the public school system in 2006, claiming they were “bombarded with negative influences” and taught disrespect for authority.
As a result, the parents were slapped with thousands of euros in fines, and one day, Uwe alleged, police came to their home to take the crying children to school in a police van.
Worried the German government might eventually take custody of their children, the Romeikes moved to the United States in 2008, where an estimated 1.5 to 2 million children are legally homeschooled. (Read more)
the speaker is the author of Family of Secrets.
Who says politicians don’t create anything worthwhile? This is damn good comedy:
A Maryland state senator has crafted a bill to curb the zeal of public school officials who are tempted to suspend students as young as kindergarten for having things — or talking about things, or eating things — that represent guns, but aren’t actually anything like real guns.
Sen. J. B. Jennings, a Republican who represents Baltimore Harford Counties, introduced “The Reasonable School Discipline Act of 2013″ on Thursday, reports The Star Democrat.
“We really need to re-evaluate how kids are punished,” Jennings told The Star Democrat. “These kids can’t comprehend what they are doing or the ramifications of their actions.”
“These suspensions are going on their permanent records and could have lasting effects on their educations,” he added.
A nationwide flurry of suspensions seemed to reach an absurd level recently when Josh Welch, a second-grader at Park Elementary School in Baltimore, Maryland, was suspended for two days because his teacher thought he shaped a strawberry, pre-baked toaster pastry into something resembling a gun. (RELATED: Second-grader suspended for breakfast pastry)
“I just kept on biting it and biting it and tore off the top of it and kind of looked like a gun,” the seven-year-old told Fox News.
“But it wasn’t,” he astutely added.
As Reason’s Hit & Run blog noted, Park Elementary School officials later offered counseling to other students who may have been traumatized by the pastry.
Keep in mind, this counseling for a gun-shaped pastry is being offered in a country where kids used to bring rifles to school, leave them in their lockers, then walk home along the corn fields shooting vermin.
On Tuesday, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear a 75-year-old soybean farmer’s appeal against biotech giant Monsanto, in a case that could permanently reshape the genetically modified (GM) crop industry. Victor “Hugh” Bowman has been battling the corporation since 2007, when Monsanto sued him for violating their patent protection by purchasing second-generation GM seeds from a grain elevator. An appeals court ruled in favor of Monsanto, and despite the Obama administration’s urging to let the decision stand, the nine justices will hear Bowman make his case today.
Monsanto is notorious among farmers for the company’s aggressive investigations and pursuit of farmers they believe have infringed on Monsanto’s patents. In the past 13 years, Monsanto has sued 410 farmers and 56 small farm businesses, almost always settling out of court (the few farmers that can afford to go to trial are always defeated). These farmers were usually sued for saving second-generation seeds for the next harvest — a basic farming practice rendered illegal because seeds generated by GM crops contain Monsanto’s patented genes.
Monsanto’s winning streak hinges on a controversial Supreme Court decision from 1981, which ruled on a 5-4 split that living organisms could be patented as private property. As a result of that decision, every new generation of GM seeds — and their self-replicating technology — is considered Monsanto’s property.
The anti-Rand Pauls, Sen. John McCain of Arizona and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, took to the Senate floor this morning to defend killing American citizens at presidential discretion. Graham is doing so live on C-SPAN2 right now, saying that everything you do is a danger to America no matter who or where you are, as long as the U.S. government has decided you have “joined al-Queda,” whatever the hell that means. (Read more)
Sen. Rand Paul took to the floor of the U.S. Senate just before noon Wednesday and vowed to stay there “at length” in order to filibuster John O. Brennan, whom President Obama has nominated to be the next CIA director.
The Kentucky Republican said he will hold up the nomination until he gets more information about the U.S. drone execution program, which has become a major sore point for many lawmakers on Capitol Hill.
“I will speak today until the president responds and says, ‘No, we won’t kill Americans in cafes. No, we won’t kill you at home at night,’” Mr. Paul said early on in the filibuster, that began at 11:47 and showed no signs of slowing more than four hours later.
Five hours into the filibuster, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid came to the floor to try to end it. He asked if Mr. Paul would agree to limit himself to another half-hour of remarks, and then the chamber would vote on the Brennan nomination — which likely has majority support.
Mr. Paul said he would be glad to end his filibuster immediately, but only if the administration would promise not to make Americans in the U.S. the subject of targeted killings.
Mr. Reid said he wasn’t in a position to speak for the administration and stalked off the floor.
“We’re through for the night,” he said, releasing senators who had stuck around thinking they might still vote on the Brennan nomination.
Speaking from his corner desk Mr. Paul, in red tie and gray suit and with a glass of ice water — within reach but rarely touched — spoke about political history and the origins of key constitutional precepts.
For the moment, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has blocked the use of unmanned aircraft for surveillance purposes, due to concern about clogging the skies with flying robots that crash more often than piloted aircraft.
The folks at the FAA are being pressured to lighten up and permit the use of drones by government agencies. The result of that pressure is HR 658, which authorizes appropriations for the FAA through fiscal 2014, and buried in it are the provisions to begin a “drone-apalooza” with 30,000 unmanned aircraft.
According to Jay Stanley of the ACLU, “This bill would push the nation willy-nilly toward an era of aerial surveillance, without any steps to protect the traditional privacy that Americans have always enjoyed and expected.”
Among other things, HR 658 will require the FAA to streamline its process within 90 days for government agencies to operate drones. The bill requires the FAA to allow government public safety agencies to operate drones weighing 4.4 pounds or less, as long as certain other conditions are met. The agency will be required to establish a pilot program within six months to create half a dozen test zones for integrating drones “into the national airspace system.” (Read more)