Monday, January 31, 2005

Efficiency is Important to the Chinese

Especially when they execute 10,000 to 15,000 per year so they have made an execution-mobile.

See it here.

HT Cheatseeking Missiles

Sunday, January 30, 2005

Self-Esteem Redux

Returning to the colossal failure of public schooling in California in spite of the massive amount of tax money flowing into the school systems, I was always angered at the importance attached to the kids' feeling good about themselves. Particularly when they had no reason to feel good given their school efforts and accomplishments. I wanted my kids to feel good about themselves because of their success at schoolwork.
My kids did feel good about themselves but they developed contempt for the schools and had no interest in getting good grades.
Now, in the LAT of all places, we find that the self-esteem program was a failure. Catch the link here.

Amid Attacks, a Party Atmosphere on Baghdad's Closed Streets

Even the New York Times sees success here.

The New York Times > International > Middle East > Amid Attacks, a Party Atmosphere on Baghdad's Closed Streets

Gallery of Political Wet Blankets #1

Shortfinal identifies those who can't deal with successful elections. #1 is here.

Short Final, Cleared to Land: Gallery of Political Wet Blankets #1

Thursday, January 27, 2005

Chrenkoff finds Good News in the Middle East - Why can't MSM?

Have you read any encouraging news from the middle east in your newspaper or heard it on the air? There is good news and we are making a difference. Read it


Monday, January 24, 2005

Guide to the Iraqi Political Parties from Chrenkoff

Are you confused about the candidates? At sea regarding the political parties? Need to get your scoresheet ready for Sunday?

Chrenkoff delivers.


Friday, January 21, 2005

Seen in DC

Otherworldly Posted by Hello

The Diplomad: Our Favorite Ten Lies

Wonderful sanity from Diplomad.

The Diplomad: Our Favorite Ten Lies

Barbara Boxer

While Senator Boxer's ignorance and inability to create or follow a line of logic may trouble some of us, in the fever swamp of Bush haters her theatrics in the Rice confirmation hearings raises hopes and dreams. Read about it at the link below.

Thursday, January 20, 2005

Money for Education

Picking up from the discussion on education in California from Palosverdesblog last week, I discovered a new report from the Claremont Institute suggesting that welfare reform which has been so successful in other states would free additional money which could be used for education and suggesting that the 50% of education funding which goes to administrators is more than we need - freeing up more funds. You can find the report here.

Powered by BlogWizard


Wang Classic Posted by Hello

Experimenting with picture posting. No particular significance to the image selected.

Tuesday, January 18, 2005

Laura Engages

Bill at Palosverdesblog has picked up on Laura who has commented on his items. While I am more in tune with Bills perspective than Laura's, I very much appreciate having her engage in the dialogue. She contributed some perspective to my comments on development in my community and without involved citizens with her concerns and issues, somebody might try to build LA in the foothills she loves. Even with the strange attraction that LA still has for me, I don' t think we need another one.
But back to the point, I work with some liberals and they are by and large wonderful, compassionate human beings whom I respect both professionally and personally. They don't see our current war as one to protect our traditions, culture and civilization, all of which are threatened by muslim fanatics with oil money.
From my perspective they are like a mother who has a child that is bullied at school and is trusting the school officials to come down hard on the bully. She tells the child not to fight back and he gets beat up. In an ideal world, no child should have to deal with bullies. Unfortulately, the world I grew up in was not ideal and the world we have now is not ideal either.
The liberal ideas do put us as a nation and civilization at risk. If only Laura could see our country as worthy of her vigilant defence as she does the open space and nature she loves and defends. Or help us to understand how we can stop these fanatics who kill civilians with pleasure by making nice.

Powered by BlogWizard

Liberals and Conservatives can be friends

Laura who recently commented on Palosverdesblog with a lberal perspective contributed to my post on the wilderness in transition where I am adapting after years in LA. Although her politics may be liberal, I think I would be stereotyping to call her preference for rural, less populated environs liberal.
There are surely conservatives that share her feelings. I would like the opportunity for a rural existance but must compromise because I have to find someone willing to pay me within reasonable proximity to the best living environment I can find. I am willing to accept planned development and onerous owners associations as acceptable compromises - at least for now.
The remaining Sierra foothills look mighty open to me. I don't mind Laura and others with her keeping an eye on things and calling attention to unneccessary and ugly developments. I don't want the foothills paved over either.

Powered by BlogWizard

Thursday, January 13, 2005

Into the Wilderness

Up here, the unincorporated community where I live is the population center for the county. After thirty years in Los Angeles County currently, I think, at 8,000,000 and bigger than many countries, I live in a county of 130,000. The first time I brought my wife up here and driving from the Sacramento airport through Sacramento county (1,500,000), she asked where the people were. From the air when leaving Sacramento, you can't blink or you will have missed it. I am not saying that there is a virtue in the density and size of the LA area - just making a contrast.
Anyway the big controversy here is that people are moving here and the ones that moved here yesterday don't want to be inconvenienced by the people moving here today and particularly those who might move here tomorrow. For some reason, five years ago a Sacramento judge decided that the county plan was unacceptable and it took until now for the supervisors to address the shortcomings. No new development since. The NIMBY's now have forced a ballot proposition hoping to kill the new plan because no new development is allowed without one. I don't know what to expect the outcome to be but I would like some more development because they would have to improve the roads and we might get some more interesting shopping in town without shlepping to tony Roseville 20 miles away on surface streets.
It amazes me that when in LA, it never crossed my mind that I had the slightest possibility of influencing anything that happened- even in the small town where I lived. Here I have hope that I can. It may be only a statistical illusion but one out of 130,000 seems possible where one out of 8,000,000 is like winning the lottery.

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Getting Started

Inspired by Palosverdesblog here I go. I am once retired and back in the workforce with a new job and a business venture that will soon get me a second retirement party. After thirty-five years in Los Angeles (twenty-five in Palos Verdes), we were able to sell the million dollar house in PV which we couldn't afford to bring into the twenty-first century and have enough money left after cleaning up the debts to get into a new house in an upscale, planned golf course oriented community (with more deed restrictions than I knew existed). The new house makes my wife happy and that means a lot.
I am the one with PV longings and I havn't lived there for more than two days a week for two years. We didn't have an ocean view but all our otherwise ordinary trips included dramatic ocean views: Catalina Island, south bay beaches, LAX , the LA skyline, LA harbor and the mountains. Here the equivalent is looking down on the fog in Sacramento, the mud flats of Flosom Lake and a tease of the Sierra snowcaps. What I don't have to do is interact with 20 million people when I go anywhere on a freeway system which was just adequate thirty years ago.
There is a definite difference between southern and northern California but I can't put my finger on it. I am interested in identifying why northern Californians feel superior to southern Californians. They don't really make it explicit but you know they think it. I also know that they are wrong.