Monday, January 30, 2012

From Truthout:Teachers Inject Their Own Message Into Union-Busters' Twitter Campaign | Truthout

Teachers Inject Their Own Message Into Union-Busters' Twitter Campaign | Truthout

Everyone seems to get a voice on how students should be taught but the teachers themselves, who have been framed as lazy, unmotivated, self-interested slobs in desperate need of discipline from the Free Market. And in the rare moments real public schools teachers are given the microphone, they might well be fronts for Astroturf organizations like TeachPlus, non-profits underwritten by Wall Street, informed by neo-conservative economic values, and intended to undermine unions and privatize education.

Not only have corporations occupied the voices heard in the education debate, but they also have a powerful monopoly on the language we use, as Orwellian business terms – productivity (larger classes, less teachers),efficiency (less money for public schools), accountability (more high stakes standardized tests), flexibility (dismantling of unions) – become the official lexicon of status quo, pushing out real teaching terms like learning, andgrowth.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Jury finds Afghan family guilty in honor killings - Yahoo! News

KINGSTON, Ontario (AP) — A jury on Sunday found three members of an Afghan family guilty of killing three teenage sisters and another woman in what the judge described as "cold-blooded, shameful murders" resulting from a "twisted concept of honor," ending a case that shocked and riveted Canadians.

Prosecutors said the defendants allegedly killed the three teenage sisters because they dishonored the family by defying its disciplinarian rules on dress, dating, socializing and using the Internet.

The jury took 15 hours to find Mohammad Shafia, 58; his wife Tooba Yahya, 42; and their son Hamed, 21, each guilty of four counts of first-degree murder. First-degree murder carries an automatic life sentence with no chance of parole for 25 years.

Rest of story here:Jury finds Afghan family guilty in honor killings - Yahoo! News

Friday, January 27, 2012

Drive-by Scanning: Officials Expand Use and Dose of Radiation for Security Screening - ProPublica

Drive-by Scanning: Officials Expand Use and Dose of Radiation for Security Screening - ProPublica

U.S. law enforcement agencies are exposing people to radiation in more settings and in increasing doses to screen for explosives, weapons and drugs. In addition to the controversial airport body scanners [2], which are now deployed for routine screening, various X-ray devices have proliferated at the border, in prisons and on the streets of New York.
Not only have the machines become more widespread, but some of them expose people to higher doses of radiation. And agencies have pushed the boundaries of acceptable use by X-raying people covertly, according to government documents and interviews.
While airport scanners can show objects on the surface of the body, prisons have begun to use X-rays that can see through the body to detect contraband hidden in cavities. U.S. Customs and Border Protection is in the process of deploying dozens of drive-through X-ray portals to scan cars and buses at the border with their passengers still inside.
X-ray scanners have been tested at ferry crossings, for visitor entries at the Pentagon and for long-range detection of suicide bombers at special events. And drawing the ire of privacy groups, Customs and the New York Police Department have deployed unmarked X-ray vans that can drive to a location and look inside vehicles for drugs and explosives.



Discouragingly, there's more. . .

Monday, January 16, 2012

Philip Coppens: Killing Kennedy

One of my favorite researcers, Philip Coppens, on the John F. Kennedy assassination:Killing Kennedy In his article, Coppens takes a look at the conspiracy theory that Kennedy was killed because of his knowledge of UFOs -- and what he planned to do with that knowledge. Coppens has his own ideas about that, as you'll find when you read the article.

UK Think Tank: Military Should Run Schools for "Troubled" Kids

This is not the first time this news item has appeared:Military should run troubled schools to prevent new generation of rioters, says think-tank - Telegraph

In September of 2011 the following item appeared in the news stream; I posted about it here at OC:
Saturday, September 3, 2011
Soldiers 'should run schools in crackdown on indiscipline' - Telegraph
Another story concerning schools and the government's agenda for students and future citizens drones: from the UK:Soldiers should run schools in crackdown on indiscipline.

Lord Guthrie said a generation of schools modelled on the Armed Forces was needed to create a culture of respect among children from the “toughest and roughest backgrounds”.
He insisted that too many schools were currently failing to address serious behavioural problems.
Plans are already being drawn up to open a state secondary school in Manchester staffed by ex-members of the Army, Navy and RAF.

List of links to related articles embedded in the piece are telling, and chilling; be sure to check them out when reading the article. Here are the titles of those articles:

* Soldiers drafted into schools in discipline crackdown 28 Feb 2011
* Ex-soldiers 'could tame rough schools' 15 Feb 2008
* Cadet forces to be expanded in state schools 27 Feb 2011
* Armed Forces personnel to go into schools, Conservatives pledge 28 Sep 2008
* Gove to remove curriculum 'straitjacket' 24 Nov 2010
* Teachers reject armed forces 'propaganda' 25 Mar 2008

Plans are being made, with the goal of ensuring students have "respect for others and the ability to listen, learn and adapt." And be taught by military personnel.

The staged events in UK schools (and elsewhere, including the U.S.) all involve the expectation of unquestioning acceptance of authority -- and not parental authority, but educators and police. They involve scare tactics, violence, and the induction of fear.



Sunday, January 15, 2012

A Dead Whale in Toyko Bay

A Dead Whale In Tokyo Bay
As for the dead blue whale in Tokyo Bay (see below), it probably was while still healthy...feeding somewhere between the Bering Strait and the Sea of Okhotsk, unknowingly ingesting radioactive and chemically-contaminated krill at depths of 100 meters or more. These krill are spawned over the Japan Trench were the warm Kuroshio meets the cold Liman currents.

Upon feeling strange symptoms in its gut and having difficulty in holding in air, the huge cetacean rose to the surface for easier breathing and slowly swam southward in the Liman/Oyashio Current in search of warmer waters. Once past Choshi Point, it headed toward the brackish water flowing out of Tokyo Bay in hopes of reaching the estuary of the Edo River, where it could rest in the shallow bed of running fresh water. It senses filth in the water, however, and decides to push further south in search of a cleaner river.