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Archive for April 28th, 2007

Another Peace Poster

Seed Newsvine

Here is another peace poster. This one I find even more ironic. Here we have the education president bombing Iraq back to the stone age while the DoED is engaged in the Reading First scandal and NCLB is under significant attack from independent researchers across the country. Time to stand up and be counted.

clipped from www.brushstroke.tv

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Seed Newsvine

This poster was entered in a Peace Poster contest. Dripping with sarcasm, I just had to giggle. Worth a clip and a share as well.

clipped from www.brushstroke.tv

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Seed Newsvine

This page presents a powerful video that raises questions for all of us to think about. I found some of the piece disturbing not because of anything other than the fact that it rang true and reminded me that I do not do everything I could to end the war in Iraq. The video presents a powerful case for action. It calls on each of us to step up and be counted. Watch and be disturbed also.

To view the video click on www.djpauledge.com

clipped from www.djpauledge.com

 
 
 
“To stand in silence when they should be protesting makes cowards out of men”– Abraham Lincoln  



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Produced by:

TOL23Design 2005 All Rights Reserved.
Music by DJ Paul Edge

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Seed Newsvine

Clipped this interesting photo.

clipped from www.fecalface.com

The image “http://www.fecalface.com/POTD/upload/2007/03/post_222/3-25-07.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

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Seed Newsvine

Oh Rudy, hubris runs deep among you Republicans. Your shameless exploitation of 9-11 is a deep seated example of the excessive pride and arrogance of the right. Hubris generally is the precursor to downfall or destruction in classical tragedy. The hubris of the Bush White House led to the quagmire in Iraq that, in the final analysis, will prove to be the greatest threat to American security interests at home and abroad by Islamic fundamentalists; a threat far greater than existed prior to that ill-conceived war.Your remarks call into question your capacity to govern the nation. You should be deeply ashamed of your remarks and offer an apology to your Democratic brothers and sisters before you continue on in your efforts to become the president of the United States.

Your claim that the Democrats would cause more death and take longer to defeat terrorism is, quite clearly, the remark of a prideful and ambitious politico who will stop at nothing to further his campaign. It is, in the end, a Faustian deal you make. Name calling may bring short-term gains but, when the battlefield is sorted out, disaster follows.

Do yourself and the country a favor, Rudy, and withdraw from contention. The nation cannot afford a small town mayor as its leader.

clipped from today.reuters.com
What? Giuliani’s shamelessly exploiting 9/11 for political gain? Well, that’s surprising. I thought the man had more integrity than that
All joking aside, Giuliani said Tuesday night at a town hall meeting in Manchester, NH that a Democratic presidential win in 2008 would almost certainly ensure another terrorist attack on the scale of 9/11. What’s the alternative to thousands of American civilians being killed you ask? Giuliani has the obvious answer. “If any Republican is elected president —- and I think obviously I would be the best at this — we will remain on offense and will anticipate what [the terrorists] will do and try to stop them before they do it.”
What’s good for liberals is that Giuliani, a faux-conservative, is currently leading in national polls for the Republican nomination. Giuliani seemed to further ignore the reality of our current situation by claiming Democrats would cause more death and take longer to defeat terrorism.

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A number of issues jump out as Chicago Public Schools fire 775 teachers, not the least of which is the simple fact that when coupled with a larger than normal retirement pool due to a program called Pension Enhancement, CPS will have thousands of openings in all grades and subject areas this year. As a teacher educator my students are pleased because their chances of landing a job are increased. I am worried, however, that the removal of experience from the classroom exacerbates an already difficult problem for new teachers–who will mentor the new teacher in the classroom. If experience is removed from the schoolhouse then who will be most effected–that’s right, the students.Another problem I see is that the the mass layoff of 11% of the non-tenured staff wreaks of intimidation along with a failure to properly mentor new, inexperienced teachers. The claim of incompetence is belied by the fact that last year, when over 1000 teachers were fired under the provisions of the union contract that provide the principal with absolute power to hire and fire, 11% of those let go were rehired at the school from which they were let go. Politics, not competence, seems to play a role in who goes and who stays.

While teachers suffer, the fact is that students are the ones who are left out in the cold. Building a stable, independent teaching staff is crucial to educating children. Continuity builds safe expectations for children and parents. Failure of the schools to provide proper induction for teachers does not, as School Chief Arne Duncan says, “allow principals to build the best teams for their schools.” The effect it does have is quite the contrary…arbitrary power to hire and fire builds fear and compliance rather that independence and creativity in teachers. Students suffer when their teachers are mere robots delivering compliant scripted lessons in their classrooms.

clipped from www.chicagotribune.com
About 775 probationary teachers in Chicago public schools learned Friday
they are losing their jobs in a purge that district leaders say could improve
the quality of instruction in the system’s most challenged schools.
More teachers were let go last year, when a budget crunch forced schools to
cut hundreds of teaching jobs. This year’s dismissals were triggered largely
by performance issues.
Schools Chief Arne Duncan said the cuts allow principals to build the best
teams for their schools, and they are not to solve budget problems or get rid
of outspoken teachers, as some critics have alleged. He said the quality and
quantity of the teaching recruits this year gives him confidence that these
vacancies will be filled by educators who can better reach students in
hard-to-staff schools.

The cuts represent about 11 percent of the district’s estimated 7,000
non-tenured teachers.

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Time for me to move on a bit. I have said all I want to say about gun control for a while. In this post I turn to an even more frightening example of the greed of the global capitalists, the engineering of the food supply.Genetic engineering and the food additive industries are currently nearly free to do as they wish with and to the food supply. The FDA has been traditionally slow to respond to problems in the food supply and tends to be overwhelmed in the exercise of their regulatory and inspection functions, mainly because the agency is underfunded and cannot adequately staff to fulfill its Congressional mandates.

There are significant unknown dangers in both producing and eating genetically engineered foods. For example see Genetically Engineered Food: A Self-Defense Guide for Consumers by Ronnie Cummins, Ben Lillston and Frances Moore Lappe who discuss the business of genetic engineering. Or read The Politics of Precaution: Genetically Modified Crops in Developing Countries (International Food Policy Research Institute), or The Omnivore’s Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals, by Michael Pollan if you want to gain some insight into the absolute dangers of giving biotechnology a blank check to alter the food supply.

In the case of the clip below, the food additive industry, in the attempt to increase profits, add melamine to animal feed in order to boost protein. Animals, other than pets, eat that food and pass on the effects to humans. What is not know is the effect of melamine on people.

There are two possibilities here. One is that there is no effect. Oh sure, some goats and pigs and cattle may bite the dust but the deadly effect does not transfer to human beings when the flesh of these animals is eaten or the milk consumed, The other possibility is that there is a transfer effect from animal flesh or by products to human beings in which case some humans may die as a result of eating the tainted flesh.

There are some who would say lets wait until ALL the evidence is in before we act. I suspect these are the same people who say let’s not respond to global warming because not all the evidence is in. Others respond by seeking appropriate regulation of an essentially unregulated industry NOW in order to avert a potential disaster. I fall in the latter crowd. It is better to do something than nothing. It is better to place one’s bets in the ethical support of action than to ignore the potential danger to humans.

clipped from www.chicagotribune.com
WASHINGTON —
The tainted pet food scare, which has swelled into a serious crisis for animal lovers, now has spread to humans.
California officials have revealed that the contamination got into the food chain: About 45 state residents ate pork from hogs that consumed animal feed laced with melamine from China. Melamine is used to make plastics, but it also artificially boosts the protein level—and thus the price—of the glutens that go into food.
It was already fatal for some pets: 17 cats and dogs are confirmed dead, more have likely died without being reported, thousands have suffered kidney problems, and 57 brands of cat food and 83 of dog food have been recalled. On top of that, roughly 6,000 hogs will be destroyed because they ate tainted feed.
The effects of melamine on people are thought to be minimal, but no one really knows. Its consumption by humans is considered so improbable that no one has even studied it.

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