Last Night’s Show – Extreme Sovereignty!

The Podcast is UP!

NOTE! – after you click the link, the file takes time to download. Keep browsing in another window, and it will start automatically. Turn your volume to about 2/3rds.

Last Night’s show featured an indepth interview with the author/editor of “Redefining Sovereignty” and blogger extraordinaire Orrin Judd.

If you want to get a graduate school level education on Sovereignty, foreign affairs, and international current events combined, buy this book.

Better Pre-School Alternatives

Is it too much to ask that before the idiot legislature passes another idiot boondoggle like “Pre-School For All,” they are all forced to attend a few Economics courses at an accredited University?

Illinois Policy Institute has a great piece out today that offers intelligent thoughts on the impending preschool legislation…

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The Bottom Line

While universal preschool proponents may act boldly, they must also tread lightly. The Illinois Policy Institute cannot impress too heavily upon the governor, the General Assembly, and the voting public the importance of considering a dynamic approach to universal early childhood education. A single, statewide program may provide a child with an option of attending preschool. However, it is only through a variety of options that Illinois’ children will genuinely enjoy the opportunity to partake in quality preschool.

Immigration & Remittances

If you want to get a handle on Immigration (legal and illegal), follow, control & manage the cast flow.

I covered some of this on last night’s show. The data in this link is using 2003 data.

If the US want’s to track where immigrants are, just get some reasonable control over the cash flow. Frankly, by setting up a few contractors (banks) to manage the flows, the US government could undercut the rapacious pricing of 100% private companies, offer temporary workers better service, and improve national security all at the same time.

Of course, if it was efficient, it wouldn’t be the government, would it?

Mitt Romney for President!?

As some one who will always worry about the integrity of John McCain, I’m beginning to hope that Romney finds a way to break from the 2008 Pack and beat the snot out of McCain in the early primaries.

Here is one of the reasons why….

Taking on the teachers unions

IT IS RARE — and risky — for a governor and national political aspirant to put the interests of children above those of a constituency that has as much electoral clout as the teachers unions. Yet Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney has done just that with the education reform package he proposed last September and is touting nationwide.

The governor’s bill seeks to upend the status quo in teacher pay and evaluation that has been written into collective bargaining agreements across the Commonwealth. Specifically, it would offer annual bonuses for teachers with a math or science degree who pass the teacher test in their subject, forgo tenure, and receive a satisfactory year-end evaluation. It would also make teachers in all subjects eligible for a bonus upon receiving an exemplary evaluation and empower superintendents to reward teachers who work in low-performing schools. Crucially, the bill would remove teacher evaluation from the collective bargaining process and establish statewide criteria for assessing each teacher’s ”contribution to student learning.”

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The ice is starting to crack folks. People now running for office feel comfortable taking on the greed and unwarranted protection racket that is a specialty of the Teacher’s Unions. This is a good thing.

27% down, 73% more to go

I’ve argued that NCLB is dead letter because the Feds refuse to properly enforce their own law (not really a surprise).

Then I see headlines like this…

States Have More Schools Falling Behind

At least 24,470 U.S. public schools, or 27 percent of the national total, did not meet the federal requirement for “adequate yearly progress” in 2004-2005. The percentage of failing schools rose by one point from the previous school year. Under the 2002 law, schools that do not make sufficient academic progress face penalties including the eventual replacement of their administrators and teachers.

“Most people thought that at this point in the law, we’d be seeing these numbers go way, way up” as standards toughen, said Petrilli, a former Education Department official who helped implement the law in 2002.

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NCLB will have done its work when 100% of the schools fail to meet AYP.

Global Warming caused by Hot Air From Politicized Science Community

Amid the overheated Immigration debate – probably another contributor to “Global Warming” – that is currently raging, the media is in full propaganda mode in pushing the utterly nonsensical idea that my Nissan Pathfinder and your Hummer are causing “Global Warming.”

On last night’s show, we discussed the issue at length with Dr. Jay Lehr, of the Heartland Institute. Click the “Podcasting Links” to listen.

[NOTE: The Shows are 40 Megs, so I strongly recommend clicking early and surfing while the show downloads. I'm working on getting it set up so that the show starts playing before the the download is finished. If a reader has a suggestion or knows of the proper HTML code, e-mail me.]

For more “Globaloney Warming” links….

SUVs on Mars

Follow the bouncing Sun

More Data on the “Spending = Quality” Myth

D.C.’s Distinction: $16,344 Per Student, But Only 12% Read Proficiently

Not one U.S. state can boast that a majority of the 8th-graders in its public schools last year had achieved grade-level proficiency or better in either reading or math.

How much money did your state spend per pupil while failing to adequately educate in reading and math the majority of students in its public schools? The answers are in the chart below.

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If you click the link and look at the numbers, it should make you angry.

The richest nation on earth, spending more per pupil than any nation, and we can’t fine one state where the majority are a “proficiency.”

For what we are spending on “education,” every state should be at about 85% proficiency. People ask why I’m so driven in my attacks on “BIG ED.” It’s simple really. What they are doing is criminal.

Time for a Real Tax Swap?

Readers of this blog know that I’m an implacable foe of the truly awful “Meeks/Martire” HB750. It would be economic suicide for Illinois, in that it would be a massive Tax Increase with no real property tax relief.

On the other hand, folks know that I’m also an implacable foe of the Education Aparteid brought on by Illinois’ awful tax system. Property taxes are out of control in Illinois, and the only way to fix the problem is to give the overspending, featherbedding, and payroll bloat in the wealthy suburbs a well-deserved haircut.

It appears as the majority of Illinois citizens agree with me.

I got this link from Bill Baar, who has a great IL blog himself. This links to survey of Illinois voters across the state. I can’t comment on the methodology, but it seems robust.

The item that REALLY stuck out is below…

Again this year, a majority (53%) of respondents indicated that they would support increasing state income taxes and reducing local property taxes as a means of financing elementary and high school education. Half of the respondents who favored this change indicated they would still favor it even if it meant that their local schools were to get less money as a result of the change. Half of our respondents indicated that they would favor providing more state aid to school districts with less ability to fund their own educational programs, and only 9 percent opposed the idea outright (some respondents did say “it depends”).

The 26% who would favor a swap, even in the event that it lowered spending in their district, is a sizable chunk of the electorate. It is a base that can be built upon.

In the next few years, the property tax bills are going to rise in accordance with property values and the passage of local referenda. The backlash is already starting, and in about 2-3 years, it will be at fever pitch.

“Meeks/Martire” fake tax swap will become a disaster for every politician of either party that was stupid enough to vote for it.

Capistrano, River Forest, D300…it’s the Same Everywhere

Here is a clever and effective video from a group in California that is using recall rules to repeal an entire school board.

Would that we had the same power in Illinois.

This is going on everywhere folks. It’s the RULE, not the exception.
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About Those Masters Degrees Your Distict Pays Extra For

When you log onto a lot of Edu-ma-cation sites, they tend to send you tons of “Teacher Stuff.”

This is one of my favorites…

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Yup. “No Computer Skills Necessary” Just pop the video in the TV!!

Your education dollars at work! It’s a good thing your dentist and pilot don’t get their degrees this way, but think about this.

These people have control of your kids 6 hours a day!!!!