We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Our Recent Essays Behind the Front Page
Saturday, January 22. 2022
What Did Europe's First Tomato Look Like?
Involuntarily Celibate: Explanations and Practical Solutions to a Dangerous Phenomenon
How Does the FBI Art Crime Team Operate? “[The art market] provides an opportunity for people to move money in a way that they can’t with other commodities,” says FBI Special Agent Chris McKeogh.
CASE CLOSED: President Trump on Jan. 6: “I Authorized National Guard on Jan. 6 – Pelosi Turned It Down
I’m a Public School Teacher. The Kids Aren’t Alright. My students were taught to think of themselves as vectors of disease. This has fundamentally altered their understanding of themselves.
Matt Taibbi takes the full measure of Joe Biden’s first year and he demonstrates the higher truth, once enunciated by Barack Obama: “Don’t underestimate Joe’s ability to fuck things up.”
Tucker Carlson: If Putin Had A Sense Of Humor, He'd Paint All His Tanks Crossing Ukraine's Border With "No Person Is Illegal"
HOW SHOULD THE U.S. RESPOND TO A RUSSIAN ATTACK ON UKRAINE?
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That public school teacher needs to learn how science is done. "it felt like there was no longer life in the building" is not evidence, nor are her other observations about how she thinks the students are doing.
Children bounce back from all sorts of things. We may find long-term that there has been an educational loss because of remote and/or hybrid learning, but we see only minor short-term losses at present. Remember that because educators have not been doing quantitative research nor keeping good data about anything except what they are made to, they aren't likely to know how to measure education loss going forward. It's all going to be feelings and bait-and-switch research.
Much as I tout the power of properly applied science, we shouldn't believe that science is the only way of knowing things. Otherwise, what use is the whole of philosophy, art, literature, or music? Sometimes "feelings" are what get us started on a new line of inquiry. You should be a bit more sympathetic to Weiss' thesis, especially in these days when education theory and policy (among other "problematic" topics) are considered off-limits to criticism.
You could use some lessons in how to do science. You again make several mistakes.
First, I read the article and she didn't make any claims that this was a formal scientific evaluation. She wrote an essay, in the traditional Francis Bacon sense. So your criticism is really just you being negative and curmudgeonly.
Second, and more to my first sentence, you confuse "science" with "making and recording observations at a level of precision and quantification that AVI accepts." She arguably is doing "science" by making observations and providing a hypothesis consistent with them.
As an analogy, it's legitimate to say that it was early meteorology when ancients would predict weather changes by feeling a chill in the air or changes in the wind. Not modern science, not science as you defined it, yet still science.
Finally, you wrote "Children bounce back from all sorts of things. We may find long-term that there has been an educational loss because of remote and/or hybrid learning, but we see only minor short-term losses at present." No, you are putting words in her mouth b/c she stated she sees far more. Who are you to tell her she doesn't see what she claims to see? And what quantified evidence do you have to back up your assertion?
She agreed that some will bounce back, but was emphatic that some are broken. And she provided semi-quantitative evidence to support that assertion.
If you believe her conclusions aren't necessarily fixed for the long term, that's fine, perhaps you could offer some insight why you hold that opinion. But it's a fallacy to insist she's wrong b/c her approach wasn't as fully rigorous as you can envision.
It was put forth in Quillette as something that is true about education in general for the rest of us to believe and act on. On usually expects some level of rigor there. Individual anecdotes about children who are "broken" are easy to find to support any premise. I took social histories about broken children for years. You are in my wheelhouse here.
You are straining really hard to retain your narrative by making excuses for someone here. Hers is convenient and motivated reasoning, and you are apparently applauding. Motte-and-Bailey fallacy.
The biggest fallacy is that you don't know what an essay looks like. So you keep putting forth your own straw man argument. What's funny is that you keep losing too.
Not more science! Have you seen the British girl breaking down in tears, while on tv, explaining her and her friends reaction to the end of the face mask mandates in Britain? You say kids can overcome all sorts of things, very true. However, when abuse from authority figures is thrown in that equation, what is the usual outcome?
I ride\walk through a school playground quite often; the masked kids are in one group, the unmasked are in another. Why they even need masks outside is quite the question.
The other day on my ride, I observed a teenage boy , walking towards me on the path, in bright sunshine, wearing a black t-shirt with big white letters proclaiming he is a REBEL. He was wearing a mask. Quite the rebel.
By the way, based on your recommendation, I have been listening to Tides of History. Very informative, with sides of anti-Catholic bias, but worth the time. Thanks for that.
"learn how science is done."
Don't question the science. If you question the science you will be removed from all social media sites and shut down. If it gets worse our lawmakers will pass laws that will fine you or put you in jail for saying anything contrary to the official science or even simply questioning the science. If that doesn't work we are building camps where you can be reprogrammed to think right.
This is all real! A year ago it was wild right wing conspiracy and today this is happening to some extent in almost every 1st world country and half of the 3rd world countries (the other half will let you do anything if you give them some money, they don't give a shit about no stinking science). What will it be like in 6 months or a year?
The truth will set you free but if you speak the truth they will lock you up. Is this how science is done???
We'll see if this one gets through.
Little kids bounce back from singular traumatic events - but how about being told for a couple of YEARS that they're filthy little disease vectors? Restrict them from playing together, isolate them socially - how resilient are they after that? Teen mental health problems have soared - they're not going to disappear.
Looking at my son's experience in college after Covid hit - he lost a LOT of in-person learning and face to face time with his professors. Socially? The students were prohibited from getting together to study. And Zoom calls are not the same, much as it was pretended to be an adequate substitute. He doesn't feel he got anywhere near as good an education remotely as the folks in previous years in-class. Psychologically it damned near broke him, by what he said. He's a decided introvert - but there's a big difference between isolating voluntarily and having it mandated under threat of expulsion. He was VERY close to dropping out, which would have been devastating financially.
A friend who's an ESL teacher in a local high school said that this year when they were passing out laptops for remote schooling one student refused to take his paperwork home. He didn't want to do the work. And she says that the requirement to do both remote and in-class teaching on the same day (students can choose to either attend in person or remotely) has vastly increased documentation requirements.
Remember that because educators have not been doing quantitative research nor keeping good data about anything except what they are made to, they aren't likely to know how to measure education loss going forward. It's all going to be feelings and bait-and-switch research.
Oh, stats or it's not happening?
So we can't pretend to know what the effect will be until years have passed? Short term, we've already seen that the k-12 group have lost essentially a year's worth of education, possibly two. Ignore anything and everything reported now on this - go back to the glowing articles on how it'd be beneficial to go to virtual schooling and there'd be better outcomes.
The funny thing is that reality doesn't need to be documented. Reality happens, regardless of sponsored studies and research. And at this point I'm pretty dubious that the agencies that have had hard times with this all the way through are going to report accurately on their failures.
(Shrug.) YMMV, of course, but pretending it's all puppies and kittens out there is ignoring the evidence. Saying it 'May have an effect' is just stalling off the recognition that it has had an effect - and not a good one, either.
The claim is that this is a terrible outcome for education, not a question of "maybe we have had some higher than anticipated costs here." When people make such claims they need to back them up. She didn't.
If things are real, then some sort of statistical trail can usually be found. There are of course other modes of knowledge, but feelings and unsupported assertions are not a convincing one. To say that "Oh gee, she doesn't have much to support this, but maybe she's right anyway, because it fits with what some people would really like to be correct" is technically true, because it always is, but it is unpersuasive.
People really hate accountability here.
People really hate accountability here.
--The guy who offers up little more than defensive pedantry.
Regarding children, masking, and schools;
I wonder if masking all day in day care and Pre-K will have an impact on children's neural-cognitive development. Reading Science would suggest, yes. Young children should see the faces, lip and mouth movements of their care givers. They should hear the sounds of language as crisply and distinctly as possible, not muffled by a mask. Failure in this, leads to deficits in phonemic awareness, one of the leading causes of dyslexia.
In the USA, 30 % of children have significant reading disabilities, including dyslexia. That’s under pre-covid circumstances. While it's possible to intervene, it becomes more difficult overtime. Even if an effective structured literacy intervention is successful, they don't always catch up to their peers. There still remains a significant gap in volume of content and substance between the struggling reader and his peers, that is even more difficult to close. Consider also, that these children are undermined by shame and humiliation that is not only difficult to overcome but emerges more intensely and earlier and earlier with each defeat.
Why didn’t the experts point out the risks of masking young children and exposing them to masked teachers and day care personnel? They just stood by without even issuing warnings or PSAs to parents, so that the parents could attempt to remediate at home. An unfortunate statistic is that reading disabled children, wind up in prison; almost half are dyslexic. Some state corrections administrations use grade school reading scores to plan for future prison capacity. That's pre-covid.
Just to clarify, I'm sure there are children, who are resilient. My concern is the children who are not, due to various conditions. There are significant numbers of children on the path to reading difficulties, and many are dyslexic. Reading is foundational, even for Math.
I botched the sentence on prisoners. The majority of prisoners have reading difficulties, almost half are dyslexic. It's a tragedy, since there are successful interventions, if they are initiated before 2nd grade.
For the record, I think that real educational losses are not only possible, but likely. My prime suspect in this is math, where the curriculum is designed to slowly increase the amount of complexity and abstraction a student can handle to see where they top out and help them see what they can and cannot expect to accomplish in quantitative/abstract work going forward. Not that schools get the message and actually do this, but the residuals of that designed system are there and wise observers can pick out good information anyway. This will be hampered and interrupted, and very few students continue to push themselves on to further levels once the course work is no longer required. (See for example Obama, Barack). That will simply be lost, at all levels. Yet that is not proven or even evidenced at this point.
In my adult life the strength of conservatism has been our years in the wilderness, having to craft arguments twice as good in order to be heard half as often. The deterioration of that in the last few years is very disheartening. Maggie's, Insty, Gateway, ZH and other comment sections have degenerated into round-pound teams. (MF posters are still holding on better.) Maybe my memory is convenient here, but this just looks worse. I was particularly angered that this was Quillette, which has been a beacon. The motivated reasoning to congratualte ourselves over and over that "this was all overreaction...covid is no big deal..."they" lied to us...the pandemic is over (for the third time? Really? When is is real?)..." You bet I'm irritated.
While I am likely in an 'outlier' situation, a surprising number of people in my neighborhood did two things in reaction to the COVID crisis and lockdowns. They started homeschooling their kids, and they bought RV's. Four families on my rather short street, alone. The kids in this neighborhood range in age, but are probably more heavily distributed in the pre-teen years. Many families have organized and share course work in groups. Now that they have organized, many are persevering with it - although there are a few others who have returned to the classrooms, which have been re-opened over 1.5 years ago
I think the effects on kids are probably less now than they would have been, say, 30-50 years ago, before electronics took a big slice of the load off teachers. Whether the effects of the shutdown on kids can be fully ameliorated: My guess is mostly but there will be sad cases. Disasters have struck before, and populations have carried on. Not without casualties though.
The effects on teachers have been formidable too, let's not forget. Teachers Unions aside there are a lot of dedicated educators out there, who can only excel when they have sustained interpersonal focus with their students.
I suspect the effect on corporate management has also been more profound than is recognized. You just can't manage groups of people remotely with anything like the level of care and quality that is possible through direct interaction. It's clear that it's showing up on the bottom line of school age kids, and I wonder when it will start to show up on the bottom line of the corporate class?
The caliber of available women these days is driving both involuntary and voluntary celibacy.
You have all heard the Liberals and a few non-liberals say that the unvaxxed should not be allowed to be treated in the hospital. The sad and crazy thing is that they mean it, they believe that the action of refusing the vax is crazy and stupid enough that they deserve zero health care. My response to them is why not the same treatment for anyone who breaks the law? Why not the robber who is shot or the illegal alien who is injured sneaking into the country, and why not the cop shooter? Why should they get hospital care? Make those left wing Bozos eat their own words.
“…they believe that the action of refusing the vax is crazy and stupid enough that they deserve zero health care.”
I think its worse than that. They believe not getting vaxxed is actually violence. They are convinced that the effectiveness of their vaccine is dependent on your getting it too. So your not getting vaxxed makes them less safe.
As for your list of other categories of people who might not deserve medical care, I would add drug addicts, gay male AIDS patients, and obese people.
'Involuntarily Celibate: Explanations and Practical Solutions to a Dangerous Phenomenon'
Here's a simple solution: the escort service. The only difference between an escort and many modern-day Western women is that the former is at least honest about being a whore.
This incel argument is social Darwinism at its finest. Bravo, BD.
re HOW SHOULD THE U.S. RESPOND TO A RUSSIAN ATTACK ON UKRAINE?
Powerline wants us to get involved in the Ukraine and threaten Putin's invasion force with US airpower.
WHY would we do that? That's effing insane.
What possible advantage is there for the USA to risk war with Russia over that kind of stunt?
Given the abysmal level of competency in our government, we should stay the hell out of Ukraine. The one thing you can count on from our ruling masters and woke bureaucrats is that they will make a bad situation worse.
A couple of related links:
Playing Nuclear Chicken Over Ukraine
With U.S.-Russia tension over Ukraine reaching its most dangerous point, we look back at early warnings about the crisis delivered by Robert Parry in March 2015.
And we shouldn't count on any help from the EU.
When Russia invades...
... Europe will appease
The progressives need the chaos and disorder. That's why you never let a crisis go to waste.
I suggest you re-read the article. Paul Mirengoff (not PL as a group) muses about alternatives and eventually comes up with the following:
"Even just the use of our air power would put Americans in harms way and put America at war with Russia. I don’t see a prudent administration doing this."
I didn't see him advocating much of anything, except that any action should match the talk, so take some care with the talk (fat chance there, I fear).
Mirengoff is typically not my cup of tea as far as political commentary is involved, but I don't think his is so stupid as to advocate getting us into a shooting war in Ukraine.
RE: President Trump on Jan 6
It’s about vote cheating vs no vote cheating. If there was no possibility for the cheat…
I so wish we could all watch the PBS documentary showing how election procedures and vote counting are executed. Of course that documentary was never made. No broadcasting company has made one. If it had been honestly made then we could all see how our elections are performed with all the integrity our Constitution implies.
Through the lens of our “sacred” media it’s obvious there was opportunitie for election shenanigans. Had there been no opportunity then the events of the infamous date would not have had reason to occur.
Our election system has been broken since the nation began and further corrupted even to present. But our elected betters only blow smoke about correcting the many problems.
That’s why I’ am p*ssed….
Remember when they denied that there was inflation? Then they said it wasn't too bad. Then they tried to convince you that inflation was a good thing so shut up. Now they are actually talking about price controls!!! Let that sink in. First of all price controls never make things better. Secondly, why price controls inflation is only 7%, right? But of course it isn't 7% it is closer to 15% and getting worse. They are genuinely worried and you should be too. The last time inflation hit 15% we increased the interest rate to 20%. THAT is what they need to do to stop this inflation but they can't until after the next election. What that means is inflation will get worse and that is worse than the real 15% not their fake 7%. Think about what happens with inflation rates that huge. Think about what a 20% interest rate will do to our economy. And this isn't slow inflation taking a few years to get bad it is bad right now and getting worse.
But wait! Why not fire a couple hundred thousand medical; workers, ban trucks over 6 years old from California and stop all trucks from crossing the borders unless the driver is vaxed and boosted? WTF! Who is in charge in DC. It ain't Brandon. Who is engineering the collapse and why? Enemies within!
"DC Mayor Muriel Bowser Asks Residents to Begin Voluntary Rationing of Food at Grocery Stores" https://theconservativetreehouse.com/blog/2022/01/22/dc-mayor-muriel-bowser-asks-residents-to-begin-voluntary-rationing-of-food-at-grocery-stores/ Seriously, did you see this coming?
"Seriously, did you see this coming?"
Well sort of, but I thought Bernie Sanders would say it first.
With trepidation I clicked on the "Involuntary Celibacy" link, afraid that someone had found my old High School diary.
Nope. Safe for now.
I don't think it's over-rated. I like it just fine. Problem is, we're very bad at estimating its true cost at the time we're being invited to join in.
Trump & Who controls D.C. National Guard.
The President (not the House, nor Speaker of the House) controls the Washington DC National Guard.
Lies coming from any direction, Left -or- Right, North -or-South, are loathsome.
See this Link: https://dc.ng.mil/About-Us/
It's coming our way “For the first time in the U.S. we have simultaneous bubbles across all major asset classes,” said Grantham, co-founder of investment firm GMO, in a paper Thursday. He estimated wealth losses could total $35 trillion in the U.S. should valuations across major asset classes return two-thirds of the way to historical norms." This is going to be a big crash...