published Sunday, January 30th, 2011

The Report

Follow Clay Bennett on Facebook

about Clay Bennett...

The son of a career army officer, Bennett led a nomadic life, attending ten different schools before graduating in 1980 from the University of North Alabama with degrees in Art and History. After brief stints as a staff artist at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and the Fayetteville (NC) Times, he went on to serve as the editorial cartoonist for the St. Petersburg Times (1981-1994) and The Christian Science Monitor (1997-2007), before joining the staff of the ...

99
Comments do not represent the opinions of the Chattanooga Times Free Press, nor does it review every comment. Profanities, slurs and libelous remarks are prohibited. For more information you can view our Terms & Conditions and/or Ethics policy.
acerigger said...

Ignorance,,an old southern tradition,handed down from generation to generation.

January 30, 2011 at 1:07 a.m.
steve_smith_tn said...

If our Nation is not exceptional in the broad sense of that word, are any others? Another topic - is free education becoming worthless? The lessons of Booker T. Washington are lost on this generation of educators, parents and students. What good are rhetoric, latin and greek (art, music and literature these days) if a man can't make a living?

January 30, 2011 at 1:42 a.m.
acerigger said...

Speaking of ignorance, or maybe in this case incompetence, notice that the "letters to the editor" posted on Jan.30,are the same ones posted on Jan.28. What can you say?

January 30, 2011 at 1:52 a.m.
Francis said...

the assault on american exceptionalism....a liberal/progressive tradition since the woodrow wilson days.......pushed stronger than ever in the public schools by teachers who have whored themselves out to their almighty union.

January 30, 2011 at 4:37 a.m.
dougmusn said...

@steve_smith_tn: Two comments. Education, free or otherwise, is never worthless. A common belief is physical therapy is an activity where you go to have something done to you. Education is also viewed similarly. Both should be thought of differently--as a place to go to learn how to do things better. Learning how to walk is a good thing; learning how to learn is also a good thing, indeed a very good thing.

What good are the arts? Clearly I do not need my car mechanic or my doctor to paint me a picture, sing to me or talk about my problems in iambic pentameter. Learning about these things can teach me about the past in ways I might reframe my current problems and find new solutions I would not have otherwise considered. Also, understanding the arts and letters fuses me with my civilization in a way that can guide me in why I do things and not merely what to do. In short, the arts and letters can transmit values. What is the Bible's 25th chapter of the book of Matthew if not literature? ("what you do to the least of these, you do it unto me.") What is Shakespeare's King Lear if not a warning? Without the arts, life is indeed Hobbes' description: nasty, brutish and short.

January 30, 2011 at 6:55 a.m.
MTJohn said...

The war on American Exceptionalism is being waged most aggressively by those whose behavior is not congruent with their hyperbolic claims to exceptionalism.

January 30, 2011 at 7:11 a.m.
moonpie said...

MTJohn,

Your 7:11 a.m. comment is the most concise and insightful I have ever seen or heard about the problems surrounding American Exceptionalism.

Sadly, I think those whom you describe are incapable of seeing what they are doing. It's as if they are visiting a beautiful natural park, such as the Petrified Forrest and are so overwhelmed by its beauty that they have to take a piece of it with them, and thus eroding the park. They just don't see how their actions are destroying this thing that they cherished. As a result, they are making it less exceptional. And when they bring people to the park they are frustrated that the new visitors don't recognize it for its former beauty.

January 30, 2011 at 7:42 a.m.
woody said...

If this is, in fact, the definition of exceptionalism, "...the state of being special, exceptional or unique; the belief that a particular nation does not conform to an established norm..." then where is the problem??

I consider America to be a "special" even "unique" nation. The part I don't understand is the notion that we "...do not conform to the established norm...."

We are "the established norm."

Think about it. It is often ballyhooed that certain cultures are "light years" ahead of us on the educational curve, while many, many others are far behind us.

What is the norm, if we are not??

I submit, instead of complaining about what we are not, we should be pleased at that which we have accomplished without pushing our youth to within an inch of their educational lives.

Not all are even interested in science, higher mathematics, or, yes..even "the arts." And, while we all want our children to excel and be able to support themselves once they are grown, the 'end result' is not within our purview.

Let me ask..are you what your parents wanted you to be or did you follow your own drummer??

Aren't you exceptional, Woody

January 30, 2011 at 7:49 a.m.
delmar said...

acerigger: "Ignorance,,an old southern tradition,handed down from generation to generation."

Believe me acerigger, the south doesn't hold the patent on it. Up north here, it is as rampant as obesity.

January 30, 2011 at 8:25 a.m.
jimbob said...

Woody,I couldn't of said it better myself.

January 30, 2011 at 8:35 a.m.
AndrewLohr said...

We can easily find worse countries: all the atheistic countries and all the Muslim countries come to mind--none of them are free.

And we can easily imagine a better America. The trouble is our notions of "better" differ so much.

Improve education? Cars, restaurants, and cell phones keep improving because the competition is so fierce. But public schools get paid whether we like them or not, and they charge a price of zero whatever the value of their product. Introduce competition, and the schools will improve. Change over from a system of monopoly set up by law, to a system in which the money is divided among the students to be used however the parents decide, and US schooling will diversify and improve. It works at the college level: there's great diversity and freedom to excel. Put the customers in charge, instead of the bureaucrats. It's called the "free market." Proclaim liberty throughout all the land unto all the inhabitants thereof. Let us all use our heads, instead of the slaves simply doing what the slavemaster says.

What direction to improve? For love and ability to handle the worst that comes up, we cannot top Jesus Christ dying for our sins. For power to do the best, we cannot top his resurrection from the dead. Check it out. See you in church.

www.lohr84.com

January 30, 2011 at 9:16 a.m.
acerigger said...

MINNEAPOLIS (The Borowitz Report) - In her official Tea Party response to President Obama's State of the Union Address, Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) offered a bold new policy initiative she called "Don't Add, Don't Spell."

Rep. Bachmann called the proposal "a reflection of core Tea Party values" and said it would "deliver the American people from the tyranny of arithmetic, spelling, and punctuation."

January 30, 2011 at 9:23 a.m.
daver said...

MTJohn, cleverly written......but dead wrong and ignorant.

liberalism/progressivism is completely incompatible or at odds with what made america great and what america stands for.

liberal/progressive philosophy and policies have eroded this country to the point where even expressing the desire to be free from tyranny is being looked down upon as being selfish by many in this country..and many on this forum... liberal/progressive philosophy and policies have created a country full of dumb-asses, lazy government dependent morons, anti-americans and whimps who have no problem being submissive to corrupt and elitest politicians and bureacrats

January 30, 2011 at 9:24 a.m.
lkeithlu said...

"It works at the college level: there's great diversity and freedom to excel."

Aren't conservatives calling the nations universities "ineffective" and "centers of liberal mind control"?

January 30, 2011 at 9:26 a.m.
hambone said...

What ever you think American Exceptionalism is forcing it on other nations with a M-16 rifle will never work.

January 30, 2011 at 10:24 a.m.
MTJohn said...

Woody - there is a difference between the norm that we are and the standard to which we claim to aspire.

If you think we should be pleased in what we have accomplished rather than complain about what we are not, then let's also get brutally honest with ourselves about what we really have accomplished, how those accomplishments were achieved, who really benefited and who really paid the price.

January 30, 2011 at 10:24 a.m.
MTJohn said...

Daver - I don't think you understand liberalism/progressivism. I also don't think you understand that the difference between the ideals embodied in the U.S. Constitution and the philosophies and policies advocated by many conservatives. E.g. the corruption and elitism that currently characterizes our government is largely the influence of the "capitalists" who own our government. And, as we practice capitalism in this country, it is an exercise in "unregulated markets" not an exercise in "free markets". Further, note that many of those capitalists are concerned about the future of this country only to the extent that they are using our country (and a lot of conservative folks who are legitimately fed up with Washington's flaws) to further their own selfish desires.

January 30, 2011 at 10:35 a.m.
LibDem said...

Of course, America is exceptional. Read history for the past century. We've made mistakes. We've pursued policies which were rational in the context of the time but now appear foolish. The 'enemy of my enemy is my friend' philosophy has led us to support scurrilous regimes. We've supported democracies. We've rebuilt nations after wars. We've provided humanitarian aid. We've earned the right to be proud AND humble.

Mr. Lohr's recommendation on education: a "...system in which the money is divided among the students to be used however the parents decide...". Some children have chosen incompetent parents and should be punished. Next time, they will choose wiser.

January 30, 2011 at 11:18 a.m.
mountainlaurel said...

Woody said: "If this is, in fact, the definition of exceptionalism. . ."

Of course, the usage and meanings associated with the word “exceptionaIism” in connection with the U.S. have varied throughout our Nation’s history.

Interestingly, Wikipedia says that the actual term “American Exceptionalism” was first used by members of the American Communist Party in the 1920s.

January 30, 2011 at 11:29 a.m.
jpo3136 said...

I'm not so sure students get a "Civics" class anymore. We've probably excepted out of it due to whining about the cost of education.

January 30, 2011 at 11:50 a.m.
acerigger said...

Mountainlaurel, just by mentioning the A,C,P, and "American Exceptionalism" in the same sentence could cause some of our "wingers" to jerk a knee plumb out of joint!LOL

January 30, 2011 at 11:55 a.m.
whatsnottaken said...

The opposite of exceptionalism is the dumbing down of America. When school kids overachieve, they are held back so everyone else around them doesn't look as dumb. That would hurt their feelings and having a smart one in class could affect the curve and no child left behind.

January 30, 2011 at 12:23 p.m.
fairmon said...

Exceptionalism and elitism are much different. It appears our elected elite like their position of power and retain it by convincing the masses that we are "exceptional". Did we become expectional at one time by allowing ourselves to be seduced by promises of being protected and provided for at all times at any cost? How many have become pimps that recruit for the elite by repeating the elite's promises.

The elite consider themselves superior and worthy of more. They feel an obligation to assure wealth is distributed equally among those beneath them. They know the powerful do what they do and the weak endure what they must. They fail to recognize that increasing dependence will soon exceed their ability to appease by providing and that they will not be able to protect as they evolve to also being dependent.

Is history again repeating itself? Why do we study history many young people ask? Good question, apparently we don't.

Do we have creeping elitism? Check out the number in congress that are the off spring of political office holders. We elect the son of a former president. We had the wife of a former president run a strong race for the presidency. The former speaker of the house was the daughter of a senator. The senate majority leader is the son of a former office holder. Something to think about.

January 30, 2011 at 12:36 p.m.
mountainlaurel said...

Acerigger said: “just by mentioning the A,C,P, and "American Exceptionalism" in the same sentence could cause some of our "wingers" to jerk a knee plumb out of joint! LOL.”

It is sort of humorous when you think about it – they know not of the history of what they tout.

But I suppose this kind thing is to be expected from the type of politicians who actually believe a “Don’t Add, Don’t Spell” policy is a good thing . . . Let’s face it, they “don’t think.”

January 30, 2011 at 1:01 p.m.
woody said...

First, I would like to say, thank you, to those of you who read my earlier post, no matter what your reactions were. However, I would like to make it clear, in case my other post left any doubt, I do not advocate "treading water", "the status quo" or "the dumbing down" of our classrooms.

We need to allow our schoolchildren to excel to whatever extent they are comfortable with. Some of them will, indeed, become the scientists of tomorrow, but not everyone is 'wired' that way. We will still need plenty of mechanics, hairdressers, and farmers, along with additional professors, teachers and, yes, even cafeteria workers. All of these vocations will be needed for a balanced society and none, in my estimation, are any more important than the rest.

Now that is exceptionalism with a capital "E!"

TTFN, Woody

January 30, 2011 at 2:28 p.m.
Clara said...

Harp,

It seems that more and more of the "leaders" act as if we gave them "Royalty". The President could be named king, except that the other two branches of government still have some say. The Senators are the Earls, and the congress is full of Dukes. The rest of the country, down to the smallest town is run by knights of Industry, Military, Education,etc. and all of THEM are feeling exceptional.

The rest of us are the serfs and we no longer have a say, really, about who gets elected.

I can't believe what Bachmann said about the 3 r's. Public education was pushed, way back, by the need for the lower classes to be able to read, write, and do some arithmetic.

The lowest paid clerk in the hiararchy needed to hold on by learning. That seems to have changed.

That really puts us at the end of the rope. Oh yes! Don't forget the staff, the major domo's, valets, the secretaries, and the other staff members that put a large wall between we serfs and the people who are supposed to represent us.

The only time I ever really got close to a "Duke" lately is when he was on a trip to survey a local health center.

I got to shake his hand and thanked him for coming. Even he was more interested in talking to the director and getting to his next scheduled visit somewhere.

He lost the election, but I haven't seen anything of the newly elected "Duke" at all, not since the campaign.

Are people forgetting the method of getting large amounts of people fired at one time? Invite them all to an office party and hand out the pink slips, then have them escorted back to their offices and the front door. Very impersonal.

Well, that's enough rant for a lovely day, except in Egypt.

January 30, 2011 at 2:34 p.m.
steve_smith_tn said...

Free education is worthless to many. That estimation is best evinced by a complete and total lack of behavior in the classroom. Education used to be a passport to a better life. Now having fatherless children that some quack labels disabled is the path to pecuniary gain.

I used to give advice for a living. When people paid me for it, they usually heeded it. When friends and family asked for it for free, many times they treated it like a friendly suggestion. By any measure, things that are free are worth less than things with a cost.

Sure, we are all free to make our own choices be it the workplace, the classroom or the boardroom. But a greater and greater percentage, rich and poor, aren't being forced to live with their failures. The safety net is becoming our snare.

So I am beginning to think we are choosing against being exceptional. When financial aid students at the back of the room disrupt college classes and the mentally deranged with weapons are enrolled, when businesses are too big to fail, when the lazy contribute to epidemic obesity and we think of it as a disease - we are no longer exceptional. When houses with big screen t.v.'s and automatic garage door openers are foreclosed on, when people collect unemployment insurance because it pays them more than an available job, when single men are allowed to shop at Greenlife with foodstamps - we are no longer exceptional. We are no longer hungry. Hunger and ambition are now against some U.N. code of human rights. Not exceptional - We're becoming just like every other failing social democracy.

January 30, 2011 at 4:30 p.m.
lkeithlu said...

You know, steve, I agree with most of what you are saying.

I think that public schools should remain, but there should be a fee, per child, to attend. Not a huge fee, but enough that people feel that they must hold kids accountable. Enough that they think twice about having more kids than they can afford. I'm torn about compulsory education; on the one hand, only kids whose parents are willing to support them and hold them accountable will be there. On the other, no kids should be punished for having bad or neglectful parents. Many would be happy to spend voucher money on home theaters, not school tuition, especially since the voucher won't cover half what a good private school costs.

January 30, 2011 at 5:29 p.m.
fairmon said...

Clara,

So right. The Duke is now protected by the moat around his castle, you won't have access to his highness without special permission of his guards. Would you consider local HUD coordinators elitist that use the poor masses to gain personal wealth and prestige? They anoint those with real estate to make significant gains and ignore properties in which the serfs live while blaming those terrible capitalist for their dilemma?

Our former mayor is no exception. Either party elected seems to think they are sddenly endowed with the wisdom of solomon, they suddenly feel anointed as royalty deserving only the best. They appear on the balcony (TV) and pander to the masses for their support. The behavior and rhetoric of some suggest random testing may be appropriate. I would give odds on a bet the positives would meet or exceed the national norm if prescribed drugs were included.

If you conclude I don't care for either party or the tea group representatives you are correct.

January 30, 2011 at 5:43 p.m.
blackwater48 said...

Some of the same people who gripe about government being the problem ( a sophomoric term that doesn't say anything ) are the same people who tell teachers NOT to discipline their children.

Everyone should check out 'Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mom.' It will give you a blueprint for producing exceptional children.

Also, the idea about providing vouchers for private school is idiotic. Most 'public school' kids won't be accepted, but parents who already have kids enrolled get a extra tuition money. Just more 'tax cuts for the rich.'

January 30, 2011 at 7:29 p.m.
fairmon said...

Would withholding welfare assistance and tax refunds above taxes paid give parents an incentive to see that their children attended, paid attention and learned enough to pass the test? Or would we just further drop the standards to assure parity and appear we are practicing equality? No responsible parent wants their kid to pass if they haven't learned. Zero teacher disciplinary authority was the beginning of a tremendous drop in school effectiveness.

January 30, 2011 at 8:23 p.m.
steve_smith_tn said...

My kids go to the same public school system that administrates a number of failing schools. My kids have the same school superintendent as kids who have failed their entire school career. The teachers at my kids' school are paid the same as teachers at the failing schools. They sit in similar desks. They have similar curricula.

The problem is ours, not the school administration's. They set up the system we ask for. It is a problem based on an expectation that every child should perform like every other child. Read Vonnegut's short story Harrison Bergeron.

We have designed public school to cater to the lowest common denominator student. Disciplinary policies are based on the behavior of the worst. In some schools, teachers aren't worried if kids cheat, they merely hope they don't bring pipe bombs to class. That is not good enough. Similarly, administrative policies are based on the number of failures instead of the number of merit scholars. More thought is put into putting butts into seats than culling the felons and thugs.

I draw a sharp distinction with George W. Bush on this topic. He thought we should leave no child behind. I think we should probably abandon a third of them. Somewhere there are ditches not getting dug. Families with two working parents need housekeepers and cooks. Cars need washing and leaves need raking. I would make the comment about garbage men but they're actually doing pretty well these days.

All kidding aside, my parents had little opportunity to finish high school. My dad actually plowed behind a mule and my mother had three kids by the time she was seventeen. Thank God they didn't lay down and take welfare. They worked their asses off at menial jobs until they worked themselves into skilled trades.

I saw it. I had an opportunity at school they didn't have. I took it. Now I work and hope my kids see that. I fear however, that they are seeing poor kids with a standard of living not much different than theirs.

So I guess you can tell I'm not much for the mantra, "to each according to his needs and from each according to his ability." This makes the capable lay down and the least capable feel entitled. All of society suffers. But that is the system we have for a little while longer I guess, until someone can offer us justice instead of hope.

Which reminds me of a crass saying I heard once, "Hope in one hand and _ _ in the other and see which one fills up first." It pretty much describes the political atmosphere these days. Democrats give us empty hope and Republicans a handful of _ _ . I guess I'll continue to throw my lot in with the crazy tea party folks. Wait, I think I lost my tin foil hat?

January 30, 2011 at 8:43 p.m.
trburrows said...

harp we had no problem in the 50's and 60's. The problem started when we integrated schools. Hate to say it but it's true.

January 30, 2011 at 9:31 p.m.

Alexis de Tocqueville was an admirer of much of what made America unique. His observations as a Frenchman make clear that, in spite of our common cultural heritage, Americans are significantly different from Europeans. Tocqueville said that a very GOOD uniqueness is that we have figured out a way to make democracy work. He said that we have been able to preserve democratic values and institutions because we base the latter (institutions) on the former (values). He is speaking about our egalitarian assumptions (all men are created equal) that extend beyond politics, touching on almost every aspect of our individual lives and our lives together as a society.

One PROBLEM he noticed is that we are consumed with commerce – with acquiring material gain. What we own never seems to be enough. Young people spend much more time at shopping malls than at libraries. A big part of that problem is that parents not only indulge them, but model these priorities themselves. Kids aren't nearly as likely to read unless they observe their parents read.

It is well known among students that you can easily graduate from high school without having read a book. (Some graduates pride themselves on this "achievement.") Funding in K-12 and in colleges is dependent on graduation rates. In K-12, performance on standardized tests is also considered. Both ideas are based on assumptions that schools are factories, students are programmable, parents don't count, and accountability for funding can be measured using business models. There’s more to say, but I’ll stop there on the immediate crises.

America leads the world in many categories – some of them good, some bad. The general sentiment I’ve heard is that our universities are attracting the best and brightest from around the world, but K-12 lags significantly, especially in math and science. Often not understood is that language skills are foundational not only for reading and writing, but also for math, science and the other liberal arts. We can’t achieve our goals in math and science until we value reading, spelling (attention to detail), and writing skills. There are, of course, many problems in universities, as well as a wide range of achievement among the diverse spectrum of institutions. Some of the problems relate to students’ lack of preparation for world-competitive college coursework.

One thing that I think gets overlooked is the idea that our leadership in the world (in good ways and bad ways) is an awesome and sobering responsibility. Once again, I think moralism (blame the other guy) is a significant way we shirk that responsibility. Maybe some soul-searching, or at least a gut-check, is in order. We should be asking how our own habits of thinking, and acting, and living contribute to what’s wrong with American education.

January 30, 2011 at 10:07 p.m.

One of Tocqueville's points, I think, is that we can have EITHER thorough-going equality and vigorous markets OR high cultural and educational standards, but not both. And, for better and worse, Americans choose equality and markets.

January 30, 2011 at 10:38 p.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

Where does this dork get his material from? The entire world is watching what is going on in Egypt right now. I am wondering how smart it was for the obama administration to signal they are ready to see change in Egyptian leadership with the Muslim Brotherhood apparently in a good position to fill any leadership vacuum and the general population somehow both in favor of "democracy" and sharia law. Is this president bound and determine to repeat ALL of the mistakes of the Carter administration?

For the lower level of discussion that the cartoon drawer would be interested in... Students are doing their civics reports on computers with spell checkers bennett. Very few of them know how to spell any more, it makes me feel better because I have always been a horrible speller. IMHO U A$$

Whenever I have important news on my mind that would be hard to blame on “Teabaggers”, conservatives or Republicans, I can be sure not to find any mention of it on this page.

January 31, 2011 at 9:43 a.m.
mountainlaurel said...

Steve_Smith_Tn said: “Democrats give us empty hope and Republicans a handful of _ _ . I guess I'll continue to throw my lot in with the crazy tea party folks. Wait, I think I lost my tin foil hat?”

Well, what does your hat look like, Steve_Smith_Tn? I understand it’s made of tin foil but I've noted the shape of these tea party hats seem to vary from state to state and county to county. If you give us a little better description, maybe, we can help you find it?

January 31, 2011 at 10:43 a.m.

Education is a "lower level of discussion?" Hmm.

I agree that electronic devices are a big part of the spelling problem. Poor spelling is pretty common. The larger problem is that we don't think it is a big deal. Students are often too lazy to use spell check. They've been told by parents or teachers that it doesn't matter, nobody really cares. Then they are upset when dorks get the good jobs.

Of course, not using spell check assumes that they think it's important to even write the paper. They know they can stay on Facebook all day because teachers are forced to pass them. As non-readers, they are forced to get their information about Egypt from Katie Couric or Bill O'Really, and thus they empower politicians to make stupid foreign policy decisions.

Spelling is exceptionally important.

January 31, 2011 at 12:12 p.m.

But I agree that Obama will come to share Jimmy Carter's horrible foreign policy legacy.

January 31, 2011 at 12:18 p.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

Username: whats_wrong_with_the_world | On: January 31, 2011 at 12:12 p.m.

America was exceptional because it was founded on limited government and freedom. America was exceptional because the freedom and lack of government intervention allowed the citizens to be exceptional. Over the last 3 score or so years we have very effectively abandoned that foundation. Remnants of American Exceptionalism only exist today because of cultural momentum. The perceived problems with education are primarily a result of a mindset of entitlement that has polluted our youth and to a lesser degree their parents. Surely, education helped create the entitlement culture but it is only part of a much greater problem. The greater problem is the entitlement mentality and social guarantees that are such dominant forces in American life today.

So, clay’s point is a mischaracterization of the problem and completely missed the point because he is a small minded socialist that hates the notion of Amercian Exceptionalism as it was originally manifest. If students thought they were going to have to study and then work hard in order to get ahead they would do so. Once everything is guaranteed you can focus all of your energies on Lady Gaga and American Idol.

January 31, 2011 at 1 p.m.
whatsthefuss said...

We sure are going to have a boat load of cafeteria workers. Garbage men too, or sanitation engineers if you like. The problem with the latter is there is just one man per truck with the modern advances .

The complete failure to teach elementary school children to write and read is criminal. This is the job of education period. Somehow the powers to be in the educational community have repeated the phrase, "You can't teach a parent to parent" and "It's the parents fault" enough times that people believe it. Here is another one. Teachers are underpaid. Sure we would all like to make more money but somehow, with some it will never be enough. When you work 36 weeks a year and make over the average wage with excellent benefits I don't see a problem. People are tripping over each other to find employment in education. So why not out with the bad & in with the good including Boards of Education. States should mandate a proven curriculum for K thru 8. No more latitude on how to teach writing, addition,subtraction, multiplication and so forth. Teaching children to write also teaches them to spell which in turn allows them to read. Fluency and comprehension come as a result of these 3 steps. Go spend some time in an elementary school setting. Pay attention to what they do and how they do it. Look from year to year how there is often no progress. They don't know how to teach and are being allowed to do whatever they like. Entering high school is where the gloves should come off. Every student has the necessary skills to do what interests them. Vocational schools should be part of every public school. You would like to be a hairdresser? That is where it should happen along with core classes. A machinist. You should graduate with the skills to be employed the day after graduation. Rocket scientist?? Doctor?? Lawyer?? AP and dual enrollment classes are mandatory. This would eliminate 1 year from college and the reduced cost would be of great benefit to the students. Paying back student loans is a big setback to anyones future. Remove the gifted classes from elementary and middle school. All children are gifted. The teachers kids and their relatives make up the majority of these students. They aren't any smarter than the other students. They are just told that and are related. Chop the head off this ugly unmanagable beast we have come to know as public schools and bring some common sense to education. Every student is exceptional!! One more thing. It's not underfunded. It's grossly mismanaged!!

January 31, 2011 at 1:02 p.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

Username: whatsthefuss | On: January 31, 2011 at 1:02 p.m.

I do not disagree with you, public education is certainly a problem, but the mindset that students bring to class is at least as important. Take several kids from the same family. One will be driven and will be quite successful despite the public education system. Another will squander the years in school and wonder where the sanitation job is when they get out of high school, if they finished high school.

It seems to me that the latter has come to outnumber the former, or we are heading in that direction. The work ethic is out. The government gravy train is in.

January 31, 2011 at 1:26 p.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

David Crocket had very little formal education. He was probably smarter than 98% of the opportunists presently sitting in Congress.

January 31, 2011 at 1:29 p.m.

whatsthefuss:

You're right on about almost everything you wrote.

For a great alternative to the curriculum experiments of the past 50 years, see Dorothy Sayers "The Lost Tools of Learning." http://www.gbt.org/text/sayers.html She says that liberty depends on those lost tools.

I would challenge you on excluding gifted programs. They can be used to challenge bright kids who sometimes wind up getting into trouble because school bores them. We should at least go back to having two or three levels for students to maximize their gifts. If you go with average for your standard, brighter kids are bored and kids who struggle get left behind (and their struggles will multiply in middle school and high school.) Eliminating the levels actually lowers the standard to the ability of those who struggle most. And that is what we have now. It can be done without making anyone feel inferior or superior. It requires wisdom from educators and parents.

We should also be looking more carefully at academic qualifications for teachers and administrators. Education majors are among the lowest performers on college and graduate school entrance exams.

January 31, 2011 at 1:39 p.m.
BobMKE said...

No Democracy has ever succeeded in the history of the world. Their main downfall was always egalitarianism and immorality.

January 31, 2011 at 1:40 p.m.

BigRidgePatriot @1:00 pm wins the prize.

"America was exceptional because it was founded on limited government and freedom...

So, clay’s point is a mischaracterization of the problem and completely missed the point because he is a small minded socialist that hates the notion of Amercian Exceptionalism as it was originally manifest."

January 31, 2011 at 1:47 p.m.
alprova said...

I for one am glad that I decided to EXCEPT myself from entering any comments on this one, until now.

For never has it been so apparent that there are many participants in this forum who claim to love America, but who clearly despise Americans.

Some of you don't begin to know what you think you do, but that's not going to stop you from exposing your inner-self.

Just remember the world is often laughing at you, not with you. The funny thing is, you'll never know the difference.

You are indeed exceptional.

January 31, 2011 at 2:16 p.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

Username: BobMKE | On: January 31, 2011 at 1:40 p.m. "No Democracy has ever succeeded in the history of the world. Their main downfall was always egalitarianism and immorality."

American Exceptionalism was dead when we started thinking we were a democracy. I remember when George Bush was touting the creation of a democracy in Iraq and how much my opinion of him fell at that moment.

We were founded as a Constitutional Republic that put limited government and the rule of law above mob rule and redistribution of wealth.

January 31, 2011 at 2:18 p.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

Redistribution of wealth is the perversion of justice and natural law and the primary engine that ultimately destroys a democracy.

January 31, 2011 at 2:21 p.m.
whatsthefuss said...

I'm not saying all children are the same. Just the opposite. What I am saying is that the basic skills needed to live a basic life are not being taught and the system has no idea how to do it. I am a believer in setting rules for every student the minute they walk into the first year of school. I don't care what you are allowed to do at home. This is school. We work together as a group. We cooperate with each other and faculty. There are ways to connect with every student. Some need more attention while others need much less. When you make a student feel failure you have lost that student perhaps forever. Get another prison cell ready boys. Your going to need it. It is the job of every teacher to be able to identify and provide this support as needed. When teachers in lower grades do not demand good behavior and respect for all the teachers in the successive grades cannot correct this problem. It must be done on day one and every day after. If you do not posses this skill, you cannot teach. NCLB gives no direction to education, or benchmarks other than what they expect to happen in two years. That is 100% of the students make AYP. The question is what is the benchmark for AYP. So far it has been whatever each state decides. We shall see how well this has served us in two years but so far, just another big failure. The Framework for Teaching by Charlotte Danielson, seems to be the best assesment for educators I have seen. Union groups fear it's use for assesment. I wonder why. As to gifted classrooms, everything I have read stresses the importance of heterogeneous grouping of students. The children with the knowledge help the students that learn a skill at a slower rate. Perhaps it's as simple as it being explained from a diffrent view. It also eliminates the DUMB CLASS label. It also eliminates the elitist attitude many of these LITTLE GENIUSES display openly to the other students. You can go on all you like about the poor child that needs to move forward or they will suffer. If they are that brilliant move them ahead a year. Perhaps they will attend Harvard when they are 13. Good for them. I hope this dosen't cause problems with their feelings of missing out on their childhood later in life and depending on anti depressant medication.

January 31, 2011 at 2:23 p.m.
acerigger said...

"The Peoples History of The United States" by Howard Zinn

good read,no spin,that's why the "wingers" hate it.

January 31, 2011 at 2:31 p.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

Username: whatsthefuss | On: January 31, 2011 at 2:23 p.m.

Agreed, agreed, and agreed. All of that requires a responsive educational system... which would pretty much be an oxymoron for any government enterprise but certainly for a government enterprise run by powerful unions.

January 31, 2011 at 2:34 p.m.
whatsthefuss said...

It's time for the public to stop expecting results from government and education and start demanding in unison. What is everyone so afraid of???

January 31, 2011 at 2:41 p.m.

Our constitutional republic was based on democratic values (The Declaration of Independence). No one thought (or thinks) it is direct democracy. At the founding, we were exceptional in not having a king. You can thank the Puritans for that.

John Adams saw these as the keys unlocking our liberty:

"Wisdom and knowledge, as well as virtue, diffused generally among the body of the people being necessary for the preservation of their rights and liberties; and as these depend on spreading the opportunities and advantages of education in various parts of the country, and among the different orders of the people, it shall be the duty of legislators and magistrates in all future periods of this commonwealth to cherish the interests of literature and the sciences, and all seminaries of them, especially the university at Cambridge, public schools, and grammar schools in the towns; to encourage private societies and public institutions, rewards and immunities, for the promotion of agriculture, arts, sciences, commerce, trades, manufactures, and a natural history of the country; to countenance and inculcate the principles of humanity and general benevolence, public and private charity, industry and frugality, honesty and punctuality in their dealings, sincerity, good humor, and all social affections, and generous sentiments among the people. "

January 31, 2011 at 2:46 p.m.

Thanks for the clarification whatsthefuss. We're on the same page.

January 31, 2011 at 2:52 p.m.

Howard Zinn is nothing but spin. He's almost as angry and irrational as Christopher Hitchens.

January 31, 2011 at 2:54 p.m.
mountainlaurel said...

Whats_Wrong_With_The_World_ said: "But I agree that Obama will come to share Jimmy Carter's horrible foreign policy legacy."

Hmmmmm . . . . .

And where have you been, WWWTW? A lot has been happening since Carter.

Surely, a grand conservative thinker like yourself hasn’t forgotten the grand neocon ”freedom” vision touted by the Bush/Cheney administration already?

Why it seems to me like it was only yesterday when the Grand Old Republican Party and "conservative" thinkers like youself were rushing to support the Gaza elections, which led to Hamas victories. And, surely, you remember what occurred in Lebeananon, which gave us Hezbollah?

As for Obama, exactly what advice are you offering, WWWTW?

January 31, 2011 at 3:14 p.m.
whatsthefuss said...

Let us not forget just how bad President Clinton wanted to go down in history as the great American leader that brought peace to the middle east. I didn't even have to Google anything to come up with that!!

January 31, 2011 at 3:17 p.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

Username: mountainlaurel | On: January 31, 2011 at 3:14 p.m.

Just ask the question, WWOD... What would Obama Do, and do something else.

After Obama is done driving the cost of gasoline to over $6 per gallon and created another Islamic Theocracy in the Middle East you just might find a couple of news reports comparing him to Carter. He's got almost 2 years to do it, plenty of time!

January 31, 2011 at 3:20 p.m.

mountainlaurel said: "And where have you been, WWWTW? A lot has been happening since Carter."

Again with mountainlaurel's short-term-memory and avoid-the-issues-by-immature-name-calling MOO. My observation was a response to someone's earlier comment about Carter. I owe no apology for Bush-Cheney, but history did not begin with their administration as you repeatedly suggest.

January 31, 2011 at 3:26 p.m.
whatsthefuss said...

Middle East Peace??? Now that's where the word of the week would come in handy. OXYMORON.

January 31, 2011 at 3:39 p.m.
mountainlaurel said...

BigRidgePatriot said: a couple of news reports comparing him to Carter."

And what news reports are you referencing, BigRidgePatriot? Since you haven't named them I suspect they're the same people who were promoting that grandiose neocon "freedom" vision that the Republican Party was peddling during the Bush/Cheney administration.

January 31, 2011 at 3:39 p.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

GREAT NEWS: Judge Vinson tossed out Obamacare in its totality: "Because the individual mandate is unconstitutional and not severable, the entire Act must be declared void."

January 31, 2011 at 3:50 p.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

Username: mountainlaurel | On: January 31, 2011 at 3:39 p.m.

Gee mountainlaurel, who cares? The notable point is that Obama looks more like Carter every day. He sounds so good and compassionate and stuff (as long as no one takes his teleprompter away) but he is incompetent and dumb about how the world really works. It must suck having a belief system based on fantasy!

January 31, 2011 at 3:56 p.m.
Clara said...

Well,guess what happened to me after I posted the message yesterday at 2:34 p.m.

I received a message this morning that our present "Duke" was also coming to visit our Health Center. So I went and talked to him a moment and gave him the following article which he claimed was entirely false and promised to write back. This is the article from the State Newspaper. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ "Democrats target Hurt in ad campaign.

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee launched a campaign today against 19 House Republicans it sees as vulnerable, including Rep. Robert Hurt, R-5th. As part of the "Drive to 25" campaign, the DCCC will run radio ads, web ads, automated phone calls, live phone calls and e-mails in the targeted districts. The 25 refers to the number of seats Democrats would need to flip to take back the House in 2012. There are 242 Republicans and 193 Democrats, which gives the GOP a 49-seat edge. The DCCC is going after these Republicans "for choosing a partisan plan that will cost jobs and make America less competitive over the president's common-sense solutions to create jobs and get the economy moving again." The radio ad, which begins today during drive time, says: "Did you know Congressman Robert Hurt has a plan to cut education and research by 40% that will cost hundreds-of-thousands of jobs and make America less competitive? Tell Hurt to choose jobs." The ad refers to a proposal put forth by the Republican Study Committee — the Spending Reduction Act of 2011 — that is supposed to reduce non-defense discretionary spending to 2006 levels and freeze it there for the next decade. Hurt is one of 175 House Republicans listed as a member of the study committee. The nonpartisan Center on Budget and Policy Priorities said the proposed cuts, if imposed across the board, would mean 42 percent less for health care for veterans; 42 percent less for K-12 education; 42 percent less for protecting the environment; 42 percent less for the FBI, Drug Enforcement Administration, and border security. Hurt's campaign strategist Chris LaCivita responded to the "new false negative attack ads," saying "After their shellacking in the last election, it's no surprise that the national Democrat Party is resorting to spin and scare tactics to mislead voters in their newest ad campaign." "It took one month for the liberal special interests to attack Robert for keeping his promises to central and Southside Virginians when it comes to voting to get our fiscal house in order." Hurt ousted Democrat Tom Perriello in November to win the seat in the 5th District, which represents a wide swath of Virginia from north of Charlottesville to the North Carolina state line. It was a hard-fought, closely watched race, with President Barack Obama making a visit in the closing days of the contest to rally support for Perriello."

I didn't even begin to discuss education. I was focused on the VA.

January 31, 2011 at 4:40 p.m.
whatsthefuss said...

Gee Clara, a politician that would never deceive or lie. Now isn't that nice!! The education part is the focus. You are really going to appreciate having someone who seems intelligent and articulate helping you in the VA hospital. Just wait till they send you to a home. Thats when it really shows. You will be wishing you had the education chat then!

January 31, 2011 at 5:06 p.m.
alprova said...

Whatsthefuss wrote: "Let us not forget just how bad President Clinton wanted to go down in history as the great American leader that brought peace to the middle east. I didn't even have to Google anything to come up with that!!"


A failed goal such as seeking peace in the Middle East will always be better than a legacy where 100,000 innocent people were casualties of war in an attempt to destroy a nation that presented no threat to the United States at all.

That is George Walker Bush's legacy and it always will be.

January 31, 2011 at 5:13 p.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

I just went back to the cartoon for some reason and it occurred to me that you could replace the student with a caricature of a young obama wearing a Che tee shirt and scribbling Unlimited Government on his tablet.

Without even mentioning American Exceptionalism you would have hit on the source of its demise.

January 31, 2011 at 5:21 p.m.
alprova said...

BRP wrote: "After Obama is done driving the cost of gasoline to over $6 per gallon..."


Let's see...I've read nothing at all that could be laid at the President's feet, as to how the fluctuation in the price of gasoline is his fault whatsoever.

When Bush was in office and gas went to $4.50 a gallon, you folks said the same thing I am saying now in defense of that President. In fact, so did I.

President Obama does not set the gasoline prices in this or any other nation. President Obama does not influence the supply and demand of gasoline on the open market. President Obama actually allows the free and open market to determine all on its own, the price of gasoline.

If, and I say IF, you are somehow blaming the President and are asserting that because he had temporarily halted the pumping of oil in the Gulf of Mexico, that this is responsible for the rising price in gasoline, you're pumping a dry well.

Blame the Gulf oil spill. Blame British Petroleum. Blame OPEC, who loves to make a bundle for as long as possible. Blame a bunch of sensible new regulations in place that must be met as each Gulf oil platform restarts production. Blame the rising demand around the world where there was no demand before, or where their economy is not so bad at the moment.

Blame a rising demand in our own nation, which has always been a problem. People just cannot park their hind ends at home. They put 100,000 miles a year on SUV's.

But most of all, why not blame the oil companies themselves, for the fact that they raise the price of oil whenever someone sneezes on an oil rig. We're going to be paying for every gallon of oil that spewed into the Gulf of Mexico and that was not refined into gasoline.

Blaming the President is rather laughable, especially when you dig into the facts as to why oil prices are what they are. But go ahead and do it. I need a good laugh every now and then.

January 31, 2011 at 5:38 p.m.
alprova said...

BRP wrote: "GREAT NEWS: Judge Vinson tossed out Obamacare in its totality: "Because the individual mandate is unconstitutional and not severable, the entire Act must be declared void."..."


I wouldn't dance a jig of celebration just yet.

There are two more courts that will be hearing the challenge.

And between now and then, since the court refused to invalidate the provisions of the legislation that are in effect and that will continue to go into effect, AND because the American people's opinion of the Act are doing a complete 180 degree turn towards approval, I'd be rather nervous if I were you.

It's not over yet, by far.

January 31, 2011 at 5:44 p.m.
mountainlaurel said...

BigRidgePatriot said: "The notable point is that Obama looks more like Carter every day."

To be honest, I have a considerable amount of admiration for former President Carter. He is a man who has consistently demonstrated respect for human rights and someone who has consistantly worked to find peaceful solutions to international conflicts.

As Presidents go, even you must admit that former President Carter’s approach to foreign policy is far more honorable than a President like George W. Bush who lied about WMDs to start a war in the Middle East, and who consistently demonstrated very little respect for human rights. So if President Obama turns out to be more like Carter than say G.W. Bush, it’s OK by me.

My post to your good bud, WWWTW, was simply to inquire about his memory. I found it rather odd that he would leaped back in time to Carter who was President in 1977-1981 when we haven't even recovered from the war mongering years of the Bush/Cheney admistration – an administration who strongly advocated the grandiose “freedom” visions of the neocon Republicans

January 31, 2011 at 5:47 p.m.
whatsthefuss said...

Hey alpo, ONE MORE TIME, go back and look at Bill Clinton's War and tell all of us how this helped ONE AMERICAN CITIZEN or the WORLD. Go back and listen to the Clinton Administration talk about Weapons of Mass Destrustion and how dangerous Saddam was. A legacy. Monica, A legacy. We could talk about some failed saving & loans. A legacy. We must stop Saddam. Your like a broken record along with a few of your faithful. Don't you have a tax return to do or is WWW.FREETAXUSA.COM taking all your business. If you need your taxes done FREE TAX is an excellent site and saves you a bundle. It dosen't cost most people anything and you can use it to calculate IRA investment savings, among other things. Imagine, you can fund an IRA and the government will give you money to do it. A great country this America!!!

January 31, 2011 at 6 p.m.
lkeithlu said...

"I just went back to the cartoon for some reason and it occurred to me that you could replace the student with a caricature of a young obama wearing a Che tee shirt and scribbling Unlimited Government on his tablet.

Without even mentioning American Exceptionalism you would have hit on the source of its demise."

America lost its exceptionalism with the loss of the middle class, something that started decades ago.

January 31, 2011 at 6:09 p.m.
alprova said...

Whatsthefuss wrote: "Hey alpo, ONE MORE TIME, go back and look at Bill Clinton's War and tell all of us how this helped ONE AMERICAN CITIZEN or the WORLD."


I'm sorry, but I have no intention whatsoever to enter into deep discussion of any war in this thread. Another topic for another day.


"Go back and listen to the Clinton Administration talk about Weapons of Mass Destrustion and how dangerous Saddam was."


Source?


"Monica, A legacy."


Oh please. America has forgotten all about that. So should you. The man is still loved and admired, despite all. Must drive you nuts.


"We could talk about some failed saving & loans. A legacy."


Huh?


"We must stop Saddam. Your like a broken record along with a few of your faithful."


Huh?


"Don't you have a tax return to do or is WWW.FREETAXUSA.COM taking all your business."


Had you been paying attention and could comprehend what you read, you might have caught the fact that I do very few income tax returns. I specialize in the administration of retirement plans and personal investments.

January 31, 2011 at 6:33 p.m.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I almost thought I read a herald of the messiah-in-chief condemning someone else's grandiose vision. At least the one you condemn involves freedom.

No international leader trusts the intern any more than they did the tutor. He's weak, indecisive, and cozies up to exactly the wrong people. And his cheerleaders sat on their hands in November because of his resemblance to George W. Bush. As Howard Zinn put it, Obama is a mediocre, dangerous president. About that, we agree.

January 31, 2011 at 6:56 p.m.
acerigger said...

GREAT NEWS: Judge Vinson tossed out Obamacare in its totality: "Because the individual mandate is unconstitutional and not severable, the entire Act must be declared void." Username: BigRidgePatriot | On: January 31, 2011 at 3:50 p.m.

The rooster who crows at mid-night,remember him?

January 31, 2011 at 7:40 p.m.
whatsthefuss said...

Hey alpo. Wait, you want to discuss war and then in the next breath you don't wish to discuss war. You are what kids today refer to as a TOOL. As to your beloved Bill, "Put it in your mouth" Clinton, the kids actually named the oral sex act performed by a woman a "Bill Clinton." Seems it has had a lasting impression on someone. Not everyone holds your "Look I'm an instant Millionaire after leaving the White House Clinton" in such high regard as yourself. The weapons of mass destruction. Here it is one more time Einstein. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RhZ2Zv.... Is this enough of a source or would you dispute the video tape? Hey, you never heard of the Whitewater Scandal and the S&L debacle. HUH BUB. I threw the bub part in. You impress me as a bub. How about some of the other women he was having his way with while maintaining a marriage. Some say president. I say Scumbag. Oh you specialize in personal investment. So your the guy that put everyone on to Enron!!! No thanks, I'll keep my dartboard and Freetaxusa.com. My dartboard is free and I'm certain the return has a higher percentage than some "Professional Adviser."

January 31, 2011 at 8:27 p.m.
BobMKE said...

Jimmy Carter and Obama (Jimmy Carter II) are both sharp as a marble.

Slick Willie will always have a one track gutter. His Arkansas Snapple on Monica's dress will be his legacy.

January 31, 2011 at 8:32 p.m.
Clara said...

I have a question about the Health Care Bill...and Education

I only read 77 pages of the first Health Bill. I couldn't get hold of the 2,000+ page bill which was altered and amended considerably, and which was the one passed.

Was the "have to buy insurance by 2014" clause or amendment in the first, or second, or third edition? Who actually proposed it. If it was the president, shame on him. I would like to clear this up. I guess, if I die before 2014 I will not be affected.

However, if I live that long, I'm not planning to buy insurance, so I will be fined or sent to jail where they will have to feed and take care of me, since I can't and will not pay for it. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Who actually decides that a teacher is competent enough to be hired? The guidelines of the local school board, state regulations or guidelines put out by the Education Dept.?

January 31, 2011 at 8:58 p.m.
whatsthefuss said...

Clara, Each state decides the standards. They are different between states and not all states accept a license, certificate from another. Here is Georgia law if you would like to read it. 505-2-.01 GEORGIA EDUCATOR CERTIFICATION Tennessee, 49-5-5622. Requirements for teacher endorsement

January 31, 2011 at 9:17 p.m.

Civilization breathed its last when Bill Clinton was elected over two war veterans. It happened in our lifetimes. Exporting his definition(s) of morality is why those who are forced to accept it believe that we are what's wrong with the world.

Back to the cartoon, British writer G.K. Chesterton wrote "What I Saw in America" after touring our country in the 1920s. He has an interesting take on American exceptionalism, on our grandiose vision that all men are created equal, and on what that does and doesn't mean.

"America is the only nation in the world that is founded on a creed. That creed is set forth with dogmatic and even theological lucidity in the Declaration of Independence; perhaps the only piece of practical politics that is also theoretical politics and also great literature. It enunciates that all men are equal in their claim to justice, that governments exist to give them that justice, and that their authority is for that reason just. It certainly does condemn anarchism, and it does also by inference condemn atheism, since it clearly names the Creator as the ultimate authority from whom these equal rights are derived … Now a creed is at once the broadest and the narrowest thing in the world. In its nature it is as broad as its scheme for a brotherhood of all men. In its nature it is limited by its definition of the nature of all men."

January 31, 2011 at 9:37 p.m.

Chesterton: "[N]othing like this idea [of equality] exists anywhere except in America … it is the idea of making a new nation literally out of any old nation that comes along. In a word, what is unique is not America but what is called Americanisation. We understand nothing till we understand the amazing ambition to Americanise … America is the one place in the world where this process, healthy or unhealthy, possible or impossible, is going on. And the process, as I have pointed out, is not internationalisation. It would be truer to say it is the nationalisation of the internationalised. It is making a home out of vagabonds and a nation out of exiles … the theory of equality. It is the pure classic conception that no man must aspire to be anything more than a citizen, and that no man should endure to be anything less … citizenship is still the American ideal; there is an army of actualities opposed to that ideal; but there is no ideal opposed to that ideal … [E]quality is not some crude fairy tale about all men being equally tall or equally tricky; which we not only cannot believe but cannot believe in anybody believing. It is an absolute of morals by which all men have a value invariable and indestructible and a dignity as intangible as death."

January 31, 2011 at 9:39 p.m.

And our growing illiteracy in American civics is part of what unnerves us when we begin discussing our uniqueness.

January 31, 2011 at 9:45 p.m.
alprova said...

Whatsthefuss wrote: "Hey alpo. Wait, you want to discuss war and then in the next breath you don't wish to discuss war."


I only made a passing comment about the legacy GWB set for himself. That's it.


"You are what kids today refer to as a TOOL."


Better than being a FOOL.


"As to your beloved Bill, "Put it in your mouth" Clinton, the kids actually named the oral sex act performed by a woman a "Bill Clinton." Seems it has had a lasting impression on someone."


I'm sure it was a lapse in memory, but the term used loosely by some Americans has been renamed by many to be a "Lewinsky."

That aside, you can't shield your kids forever, and who would want to? They need to learn to fit in and to survive in the real world. Now or later, what's the difference? Get real.

You're just like those who tried to prosecute a President... a horribly sore loser.


"Not everyone holds your "Look I'm an instant Millionaire after leaving the White House Clinton" in such high regard as yourself."


I never said that everyone did care for the man, but he is made of Teflon, and you will pay your part in supporting him for the rest of his life, unless you pop off first that is.


The weapons of mass destruction. Here it is one more time Einstein. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RhZ2ZvS2t.... Is this enough of a source or would you dispute the video tape?


I would, because every one of those comments were taken out of context, and I remind you that they were made five years before the "intelligence" that GWB offered that was falsified to include the charge that Saddam Hussein was not complying with the demands placed upon him by the United Nations, that we now now he was indeed in full compliance with. Not one weapon was found. Case closed.

http://www.snopes.com/politics/war/wmdquotes.asp


"Hey, you never heard of the Whitewater Scandal and the S&L debacle."


Do you mean the scandals and accusations that resulted in no charges whatsoever being filed against then First Lady, Hillary Clinton or her husband, then the President of the United States of America?


"How about some of the other women he was having his way with while maintaining a marriage. Some say president. I say Scumbag."


All ancient history, none of which was ever proven to be criminal to any degree. Your fascination with where the former President put his willie is duly noted for the record.

The man will forever be a two-term President and no offense, but you are no Sarah Palin. Let it go for Pete's sake. He's been out of office for ten long years.


"Oh you specialize in personal investment. So your the guy that put everyone on to Enron!!!"


Not even close, but you believe what you wish. I need not justify myself to you. You're simply another in a long line of brave little souls who hide behind a computer screen.

January 31, 2011 at 9:55 p.m.
mountainlaurel said...

BobMKE said: "Slick Willie will always have a one track gutter. His Arkansas Snapple on Monica's dress will be his legacy."

Goodness. . . Is the the same BobMKE who wrote the “Caroler” posting in December 2010 telling us that he was a Christian who always tried to do the right thing in everything he does?

January 31, 2011 at 9:58 p.m.
alprova said...

mountainlaurel, I do have to admit that his use of the English language was rather amusing. I have to admit chuckling when I read it. It's funny. It's topical. It happened.

The point that most people who don't care for Bill Clinton miss is very simple.

The keeping of the residue on the dress was a choice that Monica Lewinsky made all by herself. And the begging question of the day has never been answered.

What kind of woman would keep something like that, and why would she keep it in her closet?

Maybe she just couldn't bring herself to have it dry cleaned out of embarrassment.

Maybe she intended to blackmail the President at some point.

Or maybe she kept it for those moments when she needed some private, playtime inducement, to bring about an enhanced amount of pleasure, in remembering that fond day.

Anyway, Hollywood wishes they had thought of it first and had put it in a movie.

January 31, 2011 at 10:15 p.m.
mountainlaurel said...

Just surprised, Alprova. But will view BobMKE and his posts a bit differently now.

January 31, 2011 at 11:25 p.m.
BobMKE said...

al & ml

I have also admitted in past posts have I do have a sarcastic sense of humor which is probably a defense mechanism from decades in law enforcement. Sometimes I can’t help myself to throw a zinger out there once in a while. It made my week that I got a chuckle from al.

February 1, 2011 at 8:16 a.m.
whatsthefuss said...

Alpo, you are just what is wrong with this country. You maintain beliefs that allow our political leaders the freedom to run amuck while feeding off the taxpayer. Tool or Fool, go look in the mirror. You say Lewinsky, I say Bill Clinton, the fact that a president would have such little respect for the Office he has the privlidge to hold or to the vows of his marriage speaks only to his lack of dignity and character. On the other hand I read that you feel it is all Monica's fault and how dare she. Perhaps you don't have much respect for women either. Moving on to the video. Please show me how any of those words were taken out of context. Quit flapping your gums and produce something other than bla,bla,bla. Also look at the dates of the last few. 2002 was the date for Sen. Clinton. Edwards and Bayh were in 2003. Your beloved Dems were right there with W along with almost every American to invade. Perhaps there are many who suffer from the Alzheimers. One more thing, ancient history does not apply to the living. Your acts as a person directly apply to your moral compass and character. I maintain Bill Clinton is a scumbag. He does not possess either. It does pay to have friends in high places though that share your chauvinist attitudes. Just ask Ben Roethlisberger. You want to talk about exceptionalism??? Alpo, lets get together for lunch. I have invited woody in the past and I believe one other along with attempting to organize the first annual Times Free Press Dysfunctional Picnic. Woody needed permission or something from his wife and perhaps she said no and no one responded to the picnic invite. Also go back and look. I have identified myself by name here on the blog. So why don't you do the same. Lets see who is the LITTLE COWARD hiding behind their computer screen???

February 1, 2011 at 9:22 a.m.
whatsthefuss said...

ml, BobMKE and his comment were very accurate and the right thing to do is tell the truth. He told the story just as it happened and even added a geopraphy lesson for the youngsters explaining where The Great Clinton was from. The truth set him free. Bill Clinton cannot make the same claim. Is he a christian too?? Which commandment is it that says, "Thou Shall Not Lie"??????? I think they even have one that tells you not to covet your neighbors wife. According to alpo it dosen't matter. It's just ancient history. Funny how two people can recall the same event with such opposing views. When I think of something ancient, dinosaurs come to mind. Not the game winning triple I hit in little league!

February 1, 2011 at 9:34 a.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

Username: lkeithlu | On: January 31, 2011 at 6:09 p.m. "America lost its exceptionalism with the loss of the middle class, something that started decades ago."

Agreed, started with Woodrow Wilson and the onset of the progressive movement. Dang that was about four score ago, not three.

I think this is SOOO important not to miss. Most of what we don't like about the state of affairs these days is the result of the very successful conversion to a form of government given to us by progressive Republicans and Democrats.

False philanthropy, intervention in industry, currency manipulation, loss of freedom, crony capitalism, and sharp uptick in corruption enabled by increased power. THANK YOU PROGRESSIVES!!! I guess we just did not have the right people in charge, once again. Disciples of progressivism keep trying this experiment and getting the same crappy results. Don’t expect that to deter them though. They just need to find the smartest man in the world to run the Ponzi scheme and it will finally generate Nirvana.

February 1, 2011 at 9:51 a.m.
whatsthefuss said...

As to your beloved Bill, "Put it in your mouth" Clinton, the kids actually named the oral sex act performed by a woman a "Bill Clinton." Seems it has had a lasting impression on someone."


I'm sure it was a lapse in memory, but the term used loosely by some Americans has been renamed by many to be a "Lewinsky."

That aside, you can't shield your kids forever, and who would want to? They need to learn to fit in and to survive in the real world. Now or later, what's the difference? Get real

Alpo as to my children, here is the difference. When children are small they should enjoy the innocence that will all to soon disapear. The last person to rob this glimpse of their never knowing youth should be an elected offical, especially our president. I will be walking my daughter down the isle this year and for many years she has been well informed of what the birds & bees do and how to protect herself in life. Her choices are hers and hers alone now. She has been given direction and information. My wish for her is to never stray to far from the center of the path of life and enjoy every day. As to our 2 elementary school students, I find it offensive that they cannot watch a news broadcast without some reporter telling us of some SCUMBAG and their perverted behavior. It's not for youngsters ears to hear. When a parent finds it appropriate to discuss and answer questions children ask is their right. So that Einstein is the difference and don't you dare tell me to get over it. A prude I am not but anyone who interferes with my childrens innocence, including you will come to regret you ever had such a thought. Let me know when you want to get together for lunch. I'm available every day but Fridays are always the most fun.

February 1, 2011 at 10:01 a.m.
hotdiggity said...

BRP says "GREAT NEWS: Judge Vinson tossed out Obamacare in its totality: "Because the individual mandate is unconstitutional and not severable, the entire Act must be declared void."

Are you aware that Congress passed socialized medicine with mandated health insurance....in 1789? Signed into law by President John Adams?

As the article states, he probably "had a pretty good grasp on what the framers had in mind."

http://blogs.forbes.com/rickungar/2011/01/17/congress-passes-socialized-medicine-and-mandates-health-insurance-in-1798/

February 1, 2011 at 1:22 p.m.
alprova said...

Whatsthefuss wrote: "Alpo, you are just what is wrong with this country. You maintain beliefs that allow our political leaders the freedom to run amuck while feeding off the taxpayer."


Is THAT what I do? Wow.


"Tool or Fool, go look in the mirror. You say Lewinsky, I say Bill Clinton, the fact that a president would have such little respect for the Office he has the privlidge to hold or to the vows of his marriage speaks only to his lack of dignity and character."


Oh my, I had no idea that Bill Clinton was the only person in this entire nation who ever had an affair. The man is a human being. He is not a God. Get over it already.


"On the other hand I read that you feel it is all Monica's fault and how dare she. Perhaps you don't have much respect for women either."


I don't judge either one of them. What they did has no effect on my life or that of the American people. You'd think you were married to the man or something, the way you are carrying on.


Moving on to the video. Please show me how any of those words were taken out of context."


Did you ever read the Snopes article? Do you understand what "out of context" means?


"Quit flapping your gums and produce something other than bla,bla,bla."


I'm typing. My gums are not involved.


"Also look at the dates of the last few. 2002 was the date for Sen. Clinton. Edwards and Bayh were in 2003. Your beloved Dems were right there with W along with almost every American to invade."


Which brings up the manufactured intelligence that GWB used to call for invading a nation that was no threat to us. Before then, who had any reason to think that the intelligence was manufactured?

Saddam Hussein had used weapons of mass destruction on his own people, eight years prior. Again, he apparently disposed of them prior to 2003, for not one usable weapon was ever found.


"Your acts as a person directly apply to your moral compass and character. I maintain Bill Clinton is a scumbag. He does not possess either."


Who cares what you think? I, one of many people, understand the frailty of humanity. No one is perfect. No one is exempt from making mistakes or for being impulsive when tempted.

What skeletons are in your closet?


"Alpo, lets get together for lunch."


No thanks. I don't dine with jerks.


"I have identified myself by name here on the blog. So why don't you do the same. Lets see who is the LITTLE COWARD hiding behind their computer screen???"


If you think I care what your name is, and that I am in any manner going looking for it, think again. I don't care. My name is none of your business.

I didn't call you a coward. I called you a brave little soul. You're a little touchy on that one, don't you think?

February 2, 2011 at 4:51 a.m.
alprova said...

Whatsthefuss wrote: "Alpo as to my children, here is the difference. When children are small they should enjoy the innocence that will all to soon disapear."


The only way you are going to be able to control their complete innocence is to have them in your possession at all times and at least one eye on the at all times.

They will grow up with absolutely no social skills, but they'll remain completely naive to the ways of the world, if that's what you want.


"The last person to rob this glimpse of their never knowing youth should be an elected offical, especially our president."


Well I must have missed the national broadcast of the event in all its glory. As I recall, it was the Republicans who went to great length to inform a nation that it happened at all, and in complete detail.


"When a parent finds it appropriate to discuss and answer questions children ask is their right."


Who said it wasn't? You jump to a bunch of conclusions that are not even offered, don't you?


"So that Einstein is the difference and don't you dare tell me to get over it. A prude I am not but anyone who interferes with my childrens innocence, including you will come to regret you ever had such a thought."


I might suggest then, that you keep your kids at home and put 'em in a bubble. Because whether you send your kids to a public school or the most exclusive, private of schools on the planet, your kids will not remain innocent.

How innocent did you remain, and for how long? Blame Bill Clinton if it makes you feel better. I laugh at how far you are taking all of this.

"Let me know when you want to get together for lunch. I'm available every day but Fridays are always the most fun."


No thanks.

February 2, 2011 at 5:11 a.m.
whatsthefuss said...

Poorly done alpo. Poorly done. People who hide are cowards. I don't hide behind anything. It has become fact that you do!! cow·ard   /ˈkaʊərd/ Show Spelled [kou-erd] Show IPA

–noun 1. a person who lacks courage in facing danger, difficulty, opposition, pain, etc.; a timid or easily intimidated person.

The only way you face things are through anonymity with your cyber bully taunts and name calling. Again, another behavior that is wrong in this world. Very sad.

February 2, 2011 at 10:44 a.m.
alprova said...

Whatsthefuss wrote: "Poorly done alpo. Poorly done. People who hide are cowards. I don't hide behind anything. It has become fact that you do!!"


I am no more hiding than you are. I am also not threatening you nor am I interested in meeting you. Your invitation to meet me has been rejected. I don't meet people I don't have any inclination to want to get to know better.

Call that whatever floats your boat.


"The only way you face things are through anonymity with your cyber bully taunts and name calling. Again, another behavior that is wrong in this world. Very sad."


Sir, with all due respect, I have neither taunted you nor called you any names. It's quite apparent that I have struck a nerve with you, and for that I do not apologize. Go back and read your posts and discover what a complete hypocrite you are.

February 2, 2011 at 1:25 p.m.
whatsthefuss said...

Alpo, I didn't say you called me a name or that name calling in my direction offends me. I find you amateurish at best. What I am refering to is your bullying taunts and abuse towards certain people who visit and contribute here. Again, you and others are of the party that you are superior and everyone else is an idiot. Once again, I hide behind nothing. You still do. I don't know if I can survive your rejection. Imagine, rejected by the Great Alpo. It must be how Dorthy and the gang felt when they first met The Great OZ!!!

February 6, 2011 at 12:51 p.m.
please login to post a comment

videos »         

photos »         

e-edition »

advertisement
advertisement

Find a Business

400 East 11th St., Chattanooga, TN 37403
General Information (423) 756-6900
Copyright, Permissions, Terms & Conditions, Privacy Policy, Ethics policy - Copyright ©2014, Chattanooga Publishing Company, Inc. All rights reserved.
This document may not be reprinted without the express written permission of Chattanooga Publishing Company, Inc.