Um, Holy Mackerel?

26 06 2009

The Political Enclave That Dare Not Speak Its Name
The Sanford and Ensign Scandals Open a Door On Previously Secretive ‘C Street’ Spiritual Haven

Family Secret (house) in DC

I’d better go see what Jeff Sharlet has to say about this notoriety, with the Family coming out in paperback and all . . holy moly! (Or is that oy vey?)

Michael Jackson, Mark Sanford and the Synagogue of Satan:

After ignoring the most politically influential group in Washington for decades, the Washington Post is going big with the revelation that randy Republicans Mark Sanford and John Ensign both sought spiritual solace in the C Street House of the Family, aka Read the rest of this entry »





Power of Story in Public Communication Meets High Tech Cool!

26 06 2009

Okay, that this high-tech magic is now real in my world, literally gives me chills in every sense of the word.

Marshall McLuhan must be muttering “I told you so” in his grave!

domesticvio holoposter

Anti-abuse Poster Only Batters When Nobody’s Looking

This is even better power of story than MisEducation (JJ’s alter ego) imagined back in 2002 when she first breathlessly penned these words:

Remember those living, moving portraits like the Gryffindor Fat Lady who demands that students give the day’s password? MisEducation nearly swooned when she read that the Muggles have acquired the power to create these living pictures.   The Times explains in Movie Posters That Talk Back:

“. . . What if, rather than being frozen on a poster for the latest James Bond movie, Pierce Brosnan and Halle Berry could leap in a full-motion, fist-flying fury to a stereo soundtrack? And what if these posters could interact with film patrons, recognizing their tastes and quickly matching their interests with trailers and show times for movies that they most likely want to see?

For the last five years Stephan Fitch and his company, Thinking Pictures, have been quietly working to recast movie posters with Read the rest of this entry »





Remember That Michael Jackson “Homeschooled” His Kids

26 06 2009

And when he was the child instead of the father, was what he got as parenting, “right”?

Joe Jackson told the BBC that he whipped Michael with a switch and a belt . . .When asked about Michael’s comments that he was so nervous seeing his father that he regurgitates, Joe Jackson’s comment is, “He regurgitates all the way to the bank.”

Just a reminder to temper our parental self-righteousness in the public policy square, as this summer’s hysteria heats up over the UN daring to champion the Rights of the Child, and the US education department addressing national school standards . . .

When it comes to Michael Jackson’s children and OJ Simpson’s children, Octomom’s or Jon and Kate’s Eight; Gov. Sanford’s children or John Edwards’ children, in or out of marriage; Sarah Palin’s special needs baby (and her teen-parented grandbaby, her daughter/s maligned by a late-night comic, her 18-year-old son off to a misbegotten war in the Middle East, whew!) never mind a whole world full of hungry, poor and health-threatened children, literally mutilated or enslaved children, abused and neglected children, church-cult-terrorism indoctrinated children. . .

Whose side are we really on?

See also
Latest Homeschool Freakout

Teach the Controversy: UN Convention of Rights of the Child





“How Food Makers Captured Our Brains”

25 06 2009

School is to Food . . .
so is resistance futile?

What do you think “control of the cookies” means? — how we can and must control the cookies, or how the cookies control us, iow control BY the cookies? Maybe the former because of the latter?

(Can cookies give me a headache?)

Three years ago during Snook’s opening run, I felt the food headache coming on in Mindless Snacks Are to Mindless School and Mindless Eating.

Those were previews of coming attractions I guess, because today comes How Food Makers Captured Our Brains:

He left the house, and the cookies remained uneaten. Feeling triumphant, he stopped for coffee, saw cookies on the counter and gobbled one down.

“Why does that chocolate chip cookie have such power over me?” Dr. Kessler asked in an interview. “Is it the cookie, the representation of the cookie in my brain? I spent seven years trying to figure out the answer.”

The result of Dr. Kessler’s quest is a fascinating new book, “The End of Overeating: Taking Control of the Insatiable American Appetite” . . .

Food like sex is literally human power. It gives us power and has power over us. It is at once visceral and sublime, for richer or poorer, in sickness and in health. Food is life and death and everything in between, so human institutions like Family, School, State and Church naturally covet and try to control its power over us for their own ends. You name it, food’s got it and we need it.

Would you believe a public official (heading her state house committee for children and families, no less!) powering her own twisted ideology of parent rights through food’s power, misusing it through Family, School, State AND Church all at once? See Read the rest of this entry »





How Changing the Rules Changes the Game

24 06 2009

If you are homeschooling — read out of the education mainstream — and don’t know about the Kobayashi Maru, you should. Think Harry Potter changing the rules to survive.

Even the artsy Oscars go by grades and scores and competitive rules, you know . . .

Obviously this is power of story for schooling, politics, the economy, families and/or classrooms with five to ten children, marriage, beauty pageants, baseball, you name it:
Read the rest of this entry »





When Getting an F is a GOOD Thing

24 06 2009

“It may be the first time
that getting an F represents an upgrade. . .”

. . .Worse Than an F

I take academic dishonesty seriously too, but punishment as the answer? Wouldn’t it be better (for schools and society too) to figure out how to get the students on-board with academic honesty in the first place?

Of course it figures the university’s lead criminology prof came up with this! 😉

“The idea was to create a fair, consistent, and effective policy on academic integrity matters across the university that would be enthusiastically embraced by students, faculty and administrators alike, and that mirrored a zero-tolerance approach both in theory and in practice,” says SCAISLE chair Rob Gordon, who directs the School of Criminology.





See, Required Curriculum Isn’t All Bad

24 06 2009

Mixing drinks with work (and education?) —

Leaders in the hospitality industry have long acknowledged that alcohol and drug abuse are dangerous byproducts of a stressful business with ready access to both. Food service workers have the highest rate of illicit drug use and the third-highest rate of heavy alcohol use among major occupations, according to the latest data from the United States Department of Health and Human Services. (Construction workers and miners drink the most, and installation and maintenance workers are second.)

wine bottleChronicle of Higher Education NewsBlog
June 24, 2009
Culinary Institute Fails to Provide Alcohol-Free Alternative, Student Says

A student at the Culinary Institute of America says a required course in which students drink wine, and the institute’s unwillingness to come up with an alcohol-free alternative, is frustrating his efforts to remain sober.

The student, Jeremy Umansky, who is 26, filed a complaint in March against the institute with the New York State Division of Human Rights.

He says the institute failed to offer him an alternative Read the rest of this entry »





Mark Sanford: I Confess, I Was Awake for All 56 Star Tattoos!

24 06 2009

Tattoo girl

Oh wait —
The Sinful Governor

Face-Tattoo Girl

Maybe he could claim he Read the rest of this entry »





Sandra Dodd’s Universe Inside Your Head!

24 06 2009

Snook featured Dale’s Parenting Beyond Belief videos and now we can add Sandra too, don’t you love the intertubes??





You Can’t Spell Godwin’s Law Without G-O-[P]

24 06 2009

GOP Women:Obama and Hitler Have Great Deal in Common:

Dear Friends:

Obama and Hitler have a great deal in common in my view. Obama and Hitler use the “blitzkrieg” method to overwhelm their enemies. FAST, CARPET BOMBING intent on destruction. Hitler’s blitzkrieg bombing destroyed many European cities – quickly and effectively. Obama is systematically destroying the American economy and with it AMERICA. First the banking/investment industry, next private enterprise (GM and Chrysler) and now HEALTH CARE. . .Start a blitzkrieg of your own!

I guess all there is to say to that, is to refer Thinking Parents back to this:
How Language Tricks Our Feelings, Shrouds Our Thoughts

See also
What’s Up With Fightin’ Mad White Women?

Is Tokyo Rush Cartoonishly Incredible on Purpose?





“The Unschooling Guinea Pig” Part Two

24 06 2009

Part One

NOVEMBER 1996-FEBRUARY 1997

– She experiences her first “sleepovers” with DiDi and Nana. Away from home overnight, she is excited and adventurous with no traces of homesickness. Several months before, Rebecca from next-door was invited to spend the night with FavD but had a classic “stomachache” very suddenly about 9:30pm necessitating her return home, to FavD’s disappointment and concern. Rebecca is three years older than FavD, so it hadn’t occurred to any of us there would be a problem.

Thus we grownups were standing by if FavD should have such needs to run back to home base.

She packed for a week! — and exhausted DiDi long before she tired herself out enough to sleep. During the second or third evening, Daddy did respond to a bedtime phone call for “CindyBaby” who somehow had been overlooked in the comprehensive packing. But in another more impromptu stay, neither CindyBaby, sleepers nor even toothbrush was with her, and she stayed happily until lunch the next day.

– We record the Christmas pageant performance on videotape. She watches the tape with pleasure, and talks about the memorization process of the poem she recited in her big scene. Everyone else with any lines to speak of, was considerably older than she. POINTS BROUGHT OUT: work pays off; she’s exceptionally good at many things; accomplishment feels great; fear and excitement are related. Mainly, she’s the one who draws out these observations.

[LMAO! says mom in the present day. “Mainly” the six-year-old should’ve been keeping this journal herself then!]

– As we design the new house on the lake, she learns to use a “Kid CAD” computer design program and a Barbie CD-ROM program with complementary features. We notice that Read the rest of this entry »





Teaching How to Treat Life (When It’s Not Human)

22 06 2009

You think PETA was pissed about the White House fly-killer? — what about South Florida’s cat-killing kid, and what does it all mean for “education?”

Posted on Mon, Jun. 22, 2009
Should schools cut animal dissections?

. . .Some classrooms are carving up dead fetal pigs, sharks, rats and cats.

Advocates say there is no substitute for learning about anatomy than hands-on experience, and many states, including Florida, allow students to opt out if they are uncomfortable with animal dissection.

Nevertheless, critics, including educators and animal rights activists, say dissecting animals — which goes back to the 1400s — is archaic. They say more humane, cost-effective and high-tech alternatives are just as educational.

The debate has been rekindled with the June 13 arrest of a former Miami Palmetto High student accused of slaughtering 19 cats across South Miami-Dade. Tyler Weinman, 18, who faces multiple counts of animal cruelty, dissected cats last year as part of his anatomy class.

While there is no evidence that dissecting cats — or any animal — will lead a student to violence, the crime has raised questions about the necessity of asking students to pick apart specimens that resemble many of their family pets.

Does anyone reading do dissection as part of a home education study? Would you opt your student/s in or out of it at school?