Why We Have No Answers For Health Care (or any other) Crisis

19 07 2007

The last few minutes of Diane Rehm’s health insurance program today was a phone interview with a Dem Congresswoman from PA, Allison Schwartz. The specific question to Schwartz — because she’s actively working on it right now — was to describe the differences between legislation in the House and Senate.

A few minutes of vivid radio imo, painting the perfect picture of why Congress and the President both have approval ratings so low that if they were being graded under NCLB, they’d have to double just to approach “failing” and triple to pass, much less make the honor roll —

At Daryl’s the other day I commented:

I am DEFINITELY in Contempt of Congress.

NPR’s Morning Edition, July 9, 2007 · . . .Democrats took office in January with a 43 percent approval rating, which has now dropped below 30 percent. The biggest drop is among Democrats. The most disaffected are independents.

The AP poll this week puts Congressional approval down to 24% and the current president, hated though he is to Clintonian-impeachment depths,with a public approval rating about 33% (other polls put it at 29%.)

So there’s plenty of Contempt to go around and deservedly so, especially imo for continuing to quarrel amongst themselves and plot against each other in domestic wargames, instead of working to turn things around for US in the real world.

And I heard somewhere these incompetent — no, anti-competent! — folks are busy voting themselves another nice raise, in the middle of this debacle. Contemptible.

But there was some real public education (as in education of the public) in her next hour . . .(drum roll, please) . . . Howard Gardner! (Can’t we just let him run the country, or at least public education?)

Howard Gardner: “Five Minds for the Future” (Harvard Business School Press)

Renowned Harvard University psychologist Howard Gardner explains the five ‘minds’ everyone will need to succeed in the years ahead.

Physics Professor on Science, Religion and Compartmentalization

19 07 2007

We’ve been talking a lot here lately about how we humans can be, um, pretty irrational in our politics and voting, religion and sports, even schooling — wherever we vest our hope to best our fear.

The most recent conversations about evidence to this effect are up top; older posts you can review for extra credit (a little unschoolers’ joke) are here and here, and/or try searching the blog with words like “sacred”, “thinking”, “science” or “reason.” (Personally I think this one captures it all.)

So what happens when science itself is the “sacred value” and ultimate concern for its devoted actors, when we bring our hopes and fears, our human hearts and spirits, our ancient history and lingering lizard brains to the disciplined acts and attitudes of third-millennium science?

Apart from the usual irrational “answers” to that, comes evolved thinking on the matter from physics and astronomy professor Rob Knop at Galactic Interactions: Read the rest of this entry »