The new requirements for No Child Left Behind waivers from the Department of Education have some bad news for America's teachers. The Obama administration wants states to use standardized tests to not only judge students and schools but now teachers as well lest we lose ground to China. Coincidentally, China this week banned standardized testing in early grades and reduced it thereafter. China, it seems, wants to be more like us.
Have we just witnessed a political slam-dunk reflecting 21st century political realities? Did Newark Mayor Cory Booker just manage to ingratiate himself with one group of voters while provoking his opponent into negatively defining himself and his political party in the campaign to fill New Jersey's Senate seat?
Ever since the first blog was posted in 1998, chronicling the aftermath of a hurricane, a lot of us have wondered if the surge of people writing about their children, their hobbies and the ups and downs of life was a good idea or a sign of the end of our communities.
During my last visit to New York City, I stumbled into an unexpected discussion about its restrictive gun polices.
HOLLYWOOD --God bless America, and how's everybody?
As Nobel Peace Prize winner President Barack Obama campaigns for another war, we should be asking whether or not the U.S. should engage Syria.
Hey, it was Labor Day, everybody. Woo-hoo. Okay, we're partying now. Throw your arms in the air and wave them like you just don't care. Blow up some balloons. Tap a keg. Rip open a bag of chips. Because this isn't a champagne and caviar kind of thing. This is the very definition of blue collar. If collars be worn at all.
I don't know who's more confused about Syria, President Obama or me.
Since his election, Pope Francis has warned repeatedly of the challenges and dangers posed by a "savage capitalism" that "has taught the logic of profit at any cost, of giving in order to get, of exploitation without thinking of people." He has rightly criticized a "dictatorship of the economy" and a "cult of money" that consistently subordinates concern for human beings to questions of efficiency and profit. He has also held up an alternative rubric, noting that "concern for the fundamental material and spiritual welfare of every human person is the starting-point for every political and economic solution and the ...
Over the summer I've perused three or four books about bucket lists (those collections of tasks, large and small, that one dreams of completing before "kicking the bucket") and my reading dovetails nicely with the perceived state of the nation.
More than 50 years ago, Cesar Chavez co-founded the United Farm Workers with Dolores Huerta. Today, the UFW and Huerta remain active in their ongoing effort to win citizenship for illegal immigrants. At a recent Bakersfield rally, UFW president Arturo Rodriguez and Huerta joined others outside U.S. Representative Kevin McCarthy's office to demand immigration reform. But if Chavez, who died in 1994, were still alive he may not have been part of the demonstration.
Republicans have largely squandered an August that should have been spent preparing the American people for a showdown with Democrats over the president's health care law. Instead, efforts have largely been diverted to a damaging internecine fight between proponents and critics of the defund strategy.
The prospect of a comprehensive administrative amnesty for illegal aliens increased last week. On Friday, the White House issued a new policy telling immigration agents not to arrest and deport illegal immigrant parents of minor children. The move extends amnesty-in-place to yet another category of aliens.
I hate to say it, but ObamaCare has been good for me.
HOLLYWOOD - God bless America, and how's everybody?
Men might be from Mars and women from Venus, but at least we're in the same solar system. When it comes to politics, liberals and conservatives can't agree on what the problems are much less solutions. We can blame the politicians for not making progress on the big issues of our time, but until Americans share a common truth about what those issues are we won't move an inch.
Since 1998 it has been prohibited by federal law for states and localities to tax Internet access. This policy, known as the Internet Tax Freedom Act, has been extended three times with broad bipartisan support. But it is set to expire again on November 1, and some Senate Democrats appear willing, this time, to allow it to actually expire if they can't use it to leverage an unrelated tax issue. It's a dangerous game that could cost taxpayers billions of dollars and worsen the digital divide by pricing some lower income Americans off of the Internet entirely.
It takes a special kind of jerk to market fear and exploit public ignorance in the midst of a health emergency - and, sure enough, members of this repellent American subspecies are already flapping their yaps.
Get this: Low expectations are the key to happiness.
The problem with a lie-even one that everyone agrees with-is that eventually you can't ignore the truth. Enron can't paper over debt and crashes. The housing bubble pops. Now, as the rush towards using standardized test scores to evaluate teachers turns into a retreat, it might be time to face that standardized tests are a lousy way to hold schools accountable.
More fun than fourteen barrels of flunkies watching our elected officials exit Washington like scared rats streaming out of a sewer to escape Godzilla. And really, who can blame them. Anybody who's ever spent a summer in DC can tell you the climate is real similar to Hell. With humidity. Then again, not sure even Hell has winged insects the size of footstools. It's not called Foggy Bottom because that's the first thing that springs to mind when Diane Feinstein walks away, you know.
The US government's decision to apply more sanctions on Russia is a grave mistake and will only escalate an already tense situation, ultimately harming the US economy itself. While the effect of sanctions on the dollar may not be appreciated in the short term, in the long run these sanctions are just another step toward the dollar's eventual demise as the world's reserve currency.