Report Retort

Has Fartus Maximus admitted to being a hedge witch?

Who primarily spends his time concocting “love” potions?

Is the Caucasian House to be sided in gingerbread?

Is an oven awaiting?

Life in Alabama

The other day, I came across an article [Link] entitled “Showy male primates have smaller testicles” and it struck me how this described an aspect of Life In Alibam!

The article describes how male primates either have substantial sperm generating capacity or they have substantial visual attraction to the opposite gender. 

But, almost never, both.

In Alibam, we have two types of male human primates: those who drive trucks (primarily pickup trucks,) and those who drive something else. 

The former group are characterized by the truck: a vehicle that dominates the roadway; that cannot be successfully steered with any finesse; that cannot be kept in lane except by the most expert of drivers; that is responsible for the majority of highway collisions and fatalities.

The truck is basically a substitute for the magnitude of the impregnation organ, at least in magnitude if not in functionality. A male human primate who “drives” a truck is unarguably “male.” (A female human primate who “drives” a truck is unremarkable; such is the difference between male and female human primates.) 

Male human primates who drive trucks are often frustrated by their inability to control their vehicle adequately and thus become insecure and haunted, which further deteriorates their ability to “drive” their truck and deal with society. This is the primary causation of all that is wrong and evil in Alibam society, which is considerable. 

It is worth noting that the head coaches of the state’s two primary universities’ (American) football teams only drive trucks in commercials and are paid for doing so. 

The second group of Alibamians, those who do not drive trucks, are generally quite competent drivers other than a studied inability to keep to one lane rather than constantly shifting between lanes. This behavior, however, has been attributed to the presence of trucks and the fear of death that such instill in otherwise sane individuals. It also seems to have some association with a general fear of losing one’s employment if one arrives after one’s boss at work.

This fear has not been strongly associated with driving trucks but rather with a general belief that Alibamians are fundamentally incompetent, illiterate, and ignorant. This belief is upheld by the life choices of many Alibamians, especially in political elections. 

Another bemusing aspect of those who drive trucks is that the trucks are almost never used to haul anything since that would “dirty” the truck and decrease its representation of the virility of the driver. 

Alabama Education

For heaven’s sake , let us sit upon the ground. And tell sad stories of the death of kings

I find it somewhat bemusing that the Alibam Council of Thieves aka the Alibam Legislature has taken up the matter of the “Common Core.” Here I thought all they had time to spend on was restricting the free will of women.

Evidently the complaint is that Alibam children are not being taught well (or are not learning well, which is the mirror image,) and the way to fix this is to disconnect from the standards and testing of such.

I have to admit that I don’t know enough about the discipline to have a knowledgeable opinion but I do know that when I was a child in primary schule, I had no problem with reading. But there were lots of kids who did. Which may or may not have anything to do with the teacher. Some kids are just stupid. 

And, yes, I know that attitude is anathema in modern society. But I have lived in Alibam much of my life and I can tell you that everyone in the state has some degree of stupid and some are consumed with it. 

Getting back to the council of thieves, it seems that the legislation is stalled in the lower house because some legislators are concerned that the instrumentality of the “Common Core” is useful. 

This is the part that is bemusing.

We have a debate in the Council of Thieves over whether hiding the stupidity of Alibam children or the schule bureaucracy is more important. 

Since the former is common knowledge, at least among the lesser stupid of Alibam’s citizens and the bureaucracy  of the schules is well known to be of greatest importance in the schule system (actual learning isn’t on the list so far as I can determine,) all I can do is hope I don’t bruise my ribs too badly rolling on the floor, laughing.

And the Thieves of the Council wonder why we are almost always dead last?

Fair Rent

This morning I ran across a PEW article [Link] entitled “Growing Partisan Divide Over Fairness of the Nation’s Tax System.” As indicated there seems to be some major disconnect between Repulsians and Democruds over how taxes should be.

Before proceeding, let me state that taxes are the rent you pay for being a citizen and living where you do. Eviction will consist of some form of punishment whether it be incarceration or loss of property. 

But what I was intrigued by was the question of “fairness.” So I started with my dictionary: the definition of fairness was useless, being the state of being fair; fair itself was more productive:

Fair    1. Free from spots, specks, dirt, or imperfection; unblemished; clean; pure.   [1913 Webster]

This clearly implies that fair is subjective but implies uniformity. So let’s consider some “fair” tax schemes:

  1. Everyone pays the same amount; anyone who can’t pay that amount is punished;
  2. Everyone pays the same fraction of total money change over some interval
  3. Everyone is allowed the same amount of money change per year: rich people have the difference confiscated; poor people are donated the difference from the confiscation (less the government’s keepage;) or
  4. Everyone’s money change per year is confiscated and a uniform amount is donated back by the government.

I could come up with some others but this seems enough to pretty well span the space. That is, this list probably manages to offend everyone, which the Kingston Trio considered useful. 

The problem is that we aren’t communicating. There is a lot of talk, but little listening and less concern for the good of the nation. 

Biden Time

I am not a fan of politicals. Few of them demonstrate either ethics or morality or even honesty. But I do feel moved to offer some potential insights into the behavior of the former deputy chief executive.

When I became a supervisor in the ’80’s, the rule was no physical contact with employees except handshaking and the employee had to offer.

In the ’90’s, I had, along with zillions of other USG supervisors and managers, to attend ‘Hugging School.” Evidently the powers-that-be decided that the Civil Service was too stuffy and unfriendly and we had to learn how to be “intimate” with each other. Happily, “intimate” did not have a sexual connotation, at least to the bureaucrats who were making everyone take this training. 

In the ’00’s, we had to take personality training, mostly based on Meyers-Briggs temperament taxonomy, so that we could understand different people. This was useful training because it provided a powerful management tool that transcended the usual New Age/Fascist/Woo-Woo management crap that got sold to the political appointees – who never got near the training – who forced us to take the training and at least pretend to use it in our day-to-day management. Which seems to prove that occasionally even the most incompetent of leaders can vertically copulate and get something right.

In the ’10’s, we went back to the no physical contact thing since too much time and resources was being spent on workers complaints about prejudice and harassment and negative performance appraisals because the workers were spending too much time on non-work stuff. 

I know very few managers who are not totally confused and not a small bit frightened. Many are giving all their workers the same performance appraisal grade and the awards kitty is evenly sliced. Which makes all the workers unhappy except the ones who are waiting to be fired. But now no one can protest favoratism or bias. 

And the morale is fecal. 

Reminds me of the mill kids who had to eat lard sandwiches at schule. 

High Failure

This morning, amidst hawgin’ tabs and wading the swamp of eMail, I ran across a New Yawk Times article [Link] entitled “High School Doesn’t Have to Be Boring.” I have to admit to reading the article mostly because when I went through high schule more than fifty years ago, it was boring. And my subsequent observations via my daughter (and the children of colleagues) and Adopt-A-Physicist have been that the situation has deteriorated. So I read the article.

The authors report that innovation seems to be a failure and that the fight against boredom only seems to be working in the extra-curricular activities. 

This fits with my experience. Then (and now) the core courses were overstructured with over-detailed syllibi and the advanced courses were too important to college admission to not be grade make-or-break. So no learning, just cramming in either venue.

I hate to say this fits my prejudices, because it does. When I went through high schule, the good teachers were the ones with real degrees and no certification. I was fortunate to capture a passing window before these teachers were ejected after five years for not obtaining certification. Nowadays, teacher certification is fundamental, as crucial as being admitted to the priesthood is for pedophiles, and perhaps with comparable results. 

The authors claim that the real excitement, and hence learning, is in the extra-curricular activities. I note but do not accept unquestioningly. Most of the extra-curricular activities are rubbish, things like singing and acting and such. I am also skeptical. We had extra-curricular activities when I was in high schule and while they were less structured, they were equally vacant of anything to learn. If anything, they were so vacant of structure that learning was more about what not to do – participate in extracurricular activities.

I have to admit that my extra-curricular activities were science and the like. The total content of the club’s activities was an annual expedition to the atomic energy museum at Oak Ridge. And we were located in one of the foremost science towns in Amerika! This is where I became convinced that Chicken Man was right when he said good students are successful in spite of bad teachers. Extra-curricular sponsors – teachers – were baby sitters, not educators.

I can’t address the fru-fru extra-curricular activities. They were all either flaming Extrovert or deep in-crowd. Or both. Much as I would have liked to learn how to draw, putting up with the whole artist angst shtick was a repellant comparable to a negative gravitational singularity. 

As a result, I have to admit that I am skeptical of this article. Nowhere does it address the Extro-Intro abyss that emerges in High Schule like acne and hickeys. And that lack is damning. Too much of public education is tromping Intro teens into the cess pool of society, to either fail or become STEM NERDs and be a caste apart for life. 

I ain’t convinced high schules can be saved. Nor humanity.

But I still have hope. After all, college works. Or at least, it worked when I went. Not sure about today. College graduates today seem as ignorant and warped as high schule grads – not STEM NERDs – did and still do. Perhaps that’s the way of humanity? The cool kids become troglodytes who are the parasites of the STEM NERDs? And we run just as hard as we cam, we STEM NERDs, to keep society from self-destructing in the greed of POLs and the antipathy of EXTRO BOGs? 

Back to the Future

Was listening to a “Best of Ideas” podcast this morning about the crazy nationalism of the Spanish and I came up with a list:

Spanish Inquisition;

Nazi Germany;

Soviet Russia;

Republican Amerika.

Maybe it’s time to give the country back to England. Would solve two problems: Brexit and Partisan Tyranny.