"Everything that is really great and inspiring is created by the individual who can labor in freedom" Albert Einstein

"A dame who knows the ropes isn't likely to get tied up." Mae West

Friday, May 30, 2008

Justice is served.

Thank goodness the Texas Supreme Court had enough sense to correct the improper taking of the FLDS children. The State now must find and process evidence on individual cases of child abuse within the religious sect - which is what they should have done in the first place and not condemn the entire group. It wouldn't be suprising to find that it was an employee of the Texas child protection agency who set up the fake phone call that started it all.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

And the winner isn't...

I attended our high school's Academic Awards Night for the 2008 graduating class. My MIL left money to fund a generous scholarship, so we go each year to see who the recipient is.

This year the graduating class consists of 105 students (yes, we are a small town). Of those, 73 students (70%) received awards at the Academic Awards Night. There were 22 scholarships given and the rest were certificates and honors. The ceremonies did not include any sports, music, or other extra-curricular awards; they have their own awards nights. It would have been quicker to honor the students not receiving academic awards.

It has always been my contention that, in the last couple decades, schools have been too generous handing out awards. It comes from this notion that we must build students' self-esteem, and this is done by giving nearly everyone an award, be it financial, certificate, ribbon, plaque, or trophy. Not only does this practice dilute the value of an "award," it results in over-inflation of these children's egos. The real world won't be so kind to most of them, and they'll be headed into some real disappointment when they are not highly praised by a college professor or future employer for what the outside world considers normal expectations.

The other thing that worries me is how 70% of the graduating class can qualify for "academic" honors. Are the schools broadening qualifications for these honors or has the curricula been so dumbed down that even an average student can be found frequently on the "honor roll?" It is highly suspect that 70% of the class are superior academically.

This is not novel to the current class, but an observation over the past few years. Our school system is touted as one of the better ones in the area, but many of the graduates find it extremely difficult once exposed to more rigorous competition in large universities. The students would be better served by reducing awards and raising academic standards. They will learn more from defeat and raising themselves to higher educational standards than they will ever get from a worthless certificate that will be long-forgotten a year after graduation.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Full of Air

If you're one of the very few people who have never experienced a belly full of gas in a public situation, then you wouldn't find the humor in the latest Gas-X commercial. A man is being interviewed for a job:

"Impressive resume. Flatulent in three languages. I see you graduated at the top of your gas."

Assitant interupts: "Excuse me. Your son Rip is on line toot."

In these situations, no matter how hard you concentrate, bathroom humor comes to the forefront of your mind.

So I found it most amusing that immediately following this particular commercial, the first reporter to appear on the CBS Evening News was Dr. John LaPoop (er, LaPook).