Puts things into perspective, no?
BTW: Many of the positions that The Donald espouses are very similar to those espoused by JFK. Hmmm....The Donald is a 1960s Democrat, like Ronaldus Magnus?
At the beginning of Villanova’s commencement ceremony this year, the emcee politely told members of the audience to silence their cellphones. The Motley Monk dutifully silenced his cellphone as did most of his faculty colleagues seated around him…except perhaps for the one colleague whose cellphone rang during the Commencement Speech.
Is improper etiquette at public gathering just another sign of the times that The Motley Monk should get used to?
Apparently not, as The Motley Monk learned today there is such a thing as proper “netiquette” as it’s now being called.
Yes, cellphones have become a ubiquitous distraction at all kinds of public gatherings. If the ringing isn’t distracting enough, how about all of those folks who believe they absolutely must check email, send IMs or Tweets, or surf the net for the latest bargains at Abercrombie & Fitch or Tasty recipe because they’re not much interested in what’s transpiring?
One would think, however, that those who are leading those public gatherings would be sure to practice proper netiquette.
According to Inside Higher Ed, apparently not the Chancellor of Alamo Colleges, Bruce Leslie.
At last week’s commencement ceremony for Palo Alto College, Leslie was clocked spending 40 minutes scrolling through his smartphone while onstage.
The faculty is outraged with Leslie because he championed making Stephen Covey’s The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People a major part of the system curriculum, replacing a required humanities course. Those habits include:
Faculty normally don’t like chancellors messing with their curriculum and think Leslie’s public conduct failed to evidence those 7 habits that he forced faculty to incorporate into the curriculum. That could be upsetting to Alamo College’s faculty.
But, that’s not why the faculty is outraged.
They’re outraged because the reason Leslie messed with the curriculum in the first place was that, in 2014, he noted that some graduates hardly looked him in the eye or knew how to shake his hand as they were accepting their diplomas during the Commencement Ceremony. In short, they demonstrated improper etiquitte to the system’s Chancellor.
Moreover, even if others in the audience were doing the same thing, the faculty are outraged because Leslie’s lack of netiquitte provided no excuse—and especially those seated on the dais—that Leslie’s conduct was appropriate.
Through a spokesperson, Leslie must have thought he was practicing Habit #1, apologizing as she did “if he offended anyone.”
The Motley Monk doubts that apology soothed the faculty’s outrage.
Let the discussion begin...
To access the Inside Higher Ed article, click on the following link:
The pontificate of Pope Francis has certainly stirred the ecclesiastical waters, especially with this Pope’s emphasis upon “mercy” and rather stern judgment about “making judgments.” Some other ways he has identified this bifurcation include: The “spirit” versus the “letter,” “inclusion” versus “exclusion,” “hope” versus “despair.”
The Motley Monk would observe that stirring the waters can be a very good thing, as doing so forces folks on both sides of the divide to reassess what each takes for granted and, hopefully, from both points of view rather than simply from one ideological point of view. As this concerns Church teaching, it’s important to reassess it periodically if only to ensure that what is being taught remains true, as was the case at Vatican II.
For Pope Francis, this kind of reassessment is not only a good thing but also results from “Hagan lío” or “making a big fuss.” Making that big fuss can be good for both theological conservatives and liberals!
But, it’s that “versus” or “antithesis”—those ideologies—that can prove to be very problematic and, as Andrea Gagliarducci observes in this week’s Monday Vatican, has the potential to unleash “theological chaos.”
How? If those adhering to either side are unyielding or use forces external to the Church—the mainstream media, for example—to demand the other side to capitulate. That’s not discerning the “spirit of the times,” as the apostles did in Jerusalem and Vatican II called the Church to do, but iron-fisted, partisan politics to get one’s ideology to prevail.
Theological liberals like to portray the Inquisition in this manner, a conservative reaction against the tide of progressivism. But, might it not be equally true today of the progressive forces railing against theological conservatives and their staunch defense of Church teaching?
To respond to that question, back to Gagliarducci’s Monday Vatican which contains a review of a fascinating article written by Stanislaw Grygiel for the Italian newspaper Il Foglio.
In his review, Gagliarducci mentions something The Motley Monk has observed for decades and has detected in much of what Pope Francis states, especially in his daily homilies at Saint Marta’s. Namely, the Marxian “dialectic.” It pits a thesis—in this instance, Mosaic Law—against its antithesis—in this case, the Jesus’ law of love. For this Pope, Grygiel points to the dialectic that pits “a merciful heart” against a “casuistry for the hard of heart.”
Rightly, Grygiel notes that this dialectic has been present in the Church history from the beginning as the “reasonableness of the truth of faith” has been tested by the “spirit of the world.”
While this dialectic might appear for many to be trite or insignificant, its rationale represents what theologians call the “Arian doubt” (“Was Jesus God?”) that has led to heresy and division in the Church. Luther later made this doubt the centerpiece of his Reform, the Freemasons adopted it as their code, and today it’s upheld by the oligarchy of the world’s elites.
For all of those who have been charmed by the Arian doubt throughout Church history, it doesn’t matter much whether or not Jesus is God or whether the sacraments effect what the Church teaches or are mere signs. Why? All of that is “the outcome of the emotional push of concrete situations.” That is, it satisfies how people feel by giving them what they want, irrespective of its moral worth.
Grygiel notes the moral implications of this Marxian goal:
Quantity is transformed into quality when it reaches its critical mass, that is, when the evil committed often ceases to be evil and becomes a good.
So, while Pope Francis rails against those elites and their secularist social and cultural agenda, he roots his pastoral practice in los pueblos and their experience. Navigating this terrain spawns “theological chaos” as, for example, people hear the Pope telling priests not to be hard of heart and judge people by the law. Instead, priests should exhibit the heart of Jesus and be merciful by immersing themselves directly into the lived experience of los pueblos. Priests should demonstrate the Way, the Truth, and the Life through their lives and what they teach, always full of love, compassion, and mercy toward all. Los pueblos want “nice priests,” meaning “priests who aren’t preoccupied with sin and its effects upon sinners.”
Aside from the fact that mercy and justice do not have to be antithetical, Grygiel notes, there’s one, very important problem all of this raises: It provides a rationale which justifies adultery, which Jesus strictly forbade.
Hence theological chaos is spawned.
Let the discussion begin…
To access the this week’s Monday Vatican, click on the following link:
Remember: Americans are free to do this...
Because of what these brave citizens have sacrificed and continue to sacrifice for us...
Whenever The Motley Monk wants to understand the meaning a national holiday, he turns to Ronaldus Magnus to provide the appropriate context.
President Reagan's inspiring statement about Memorial Day:
Memorial Day is the day each year when the people of the United States memorialize those brave men and women soldiers of the U.S. Armed Forces who paid the ultimate price by giving their lives for the freedom of their fellow citizens.
Many folks confuse Memorial Day--what used to be called "Decoration Day" because the graves of fallen soldiers would be decorated to honor their memory--with Veterans Day. That's the day each year when the people of the United States honor the service of those brave men and women soldiers of the U.S. Armed Forces who returned home, having protected the nation and preserving its citizens' freedom.
Garry Kasparov—Russian Grand Chess Master, Chairman of the Human Rights Foundation, and author of Winter is Coming: Why Vladimir Putin and the Enemies of the Free World Must Be Stopped—took to Facebook and The Daily Beast a while back in a masterful effort to put a stop to The Bern and his socialist claptrap. Kasparov should know, having lived in the Utopia once called “The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics.”
Kasparov believes that talking about socialism in the 21st century is a luxury, one made possible by the success of 20th century capitalism. Despite income inequality, he argues, “the best way to increase everyone’s share of pie is to make the pie bigger, not to dismantle the bakery.”
Does The Motley Monk hear an “Amen” from the congregation?
The folks are talking about socialism today—especially the young folks—because the folks agree that America is in troubles—the $19T+ debt should be enough to frighten anyone--yet there is no consensus about a solution. Yes, the folks agree, Washington has got to change. But, some of the folks believe the government should do much more while other of the folks believe the government should do much less.
Perhaps the economy isn’t in quite dire straits that economists like David Stockman believe, but many folks—what Peggy Noonan calls the “unprotected” class—are angry because the future is dire, as the accelerating pace of technology has been replacing workers with mahcines and jobs have been outsourced. The are obvious to the unprotected class: Slower economic growth, stagnant wages, and the steady shift of wealth from labor to capital.
For many of these unprotected folks, the belief is that the government must help them. Socialism is increasingly feeling good, as in “feeling the Bern.” Especially all of that “free” stuff paid for by the 1%.
However, Kasparov rightly observes, a society that’s too reliant upon redistributing wealth eventually runs out of wealth to redistribute. Compare capitalism to socialism in the 20th century:
“But, what about Scandinavia, Denmark, France, or the more pro-free-market United Kingdom?” young people today are asking.
For Kasparov, that’s to compare “relatively small, homogeneous populations to the churning, ocean-spanning American giant.” Plus, he observes: Even the most socialist European countries only became wealthy enough to embrace redistribution after free-market success made them rich.
I often talk about the need to restore a vision of America as a positive force in the world, a force for liberty and peace. The essential complement to this is having big positive dreams at home as well, of restoring America’s belief in ambition and risk, of innovation and exploration, of free markets and free people. America transformed the 20th century in its image with its unparalleled success. American technology created the modern world while American culture infused it and American values inspired it.
Kasparov quotes William Howard Taft’s 1911 State of the Union Address about that vision, namely, “the confident determination of a people who maintain their future growth by preserving uncontrolled and unrestricted the enterprise of the individual, his industry, his ingenuity, his intelligence, and his independent courage.”
As many others have observed, “Capitalism may not be a perfect economic system. But, it’s the best that humanity has devised thus far.”
While the Bern touts “free” college and healthcare as fundamental human “rights” and many of folks agree with him, there is no such thing as a free lunch. Kasparov rightly notes that had it not been for the success of 20th-century American capitalism, there wouldn’t be the wealth to preserve and protect the nation—and millions of “unprotected” folks across the globe as well—for progressive politicians like The Bern to tout socialism as an alternative today in the 21st century.
Let the discussion begin...
To access the websites identified in this post, click on the following link:
One of the many siren songs of those on the political Left concerns the imperative to raise the federal minimum wage—how high, it matters not, economically speaking—in that doing so will enable some of the lowest-paid folks performing menial labort to earn a “decent living.” The wizards of smart—like Saru Jayaraman—want those folks to receive a “living wage,” meaning “a per hour wage rate required to lift the living standards of a household or family with 1 worker above the poverty line.”
While that particular siren song plucks at the heart strings, its contents don’t stand up to careful economic scrutiny, as tipping has economic advantages for everyone concerned. For example, in the restaurant industry that includes those who own restaurants, their customers, the wait staff, as well as other low-wage workers whose labor is necessary to deliver food to customers.
Over at the National Center for Policy Analysis, Richard McKenzie has studied the “economics of tipping.” In his report, McKenzie found that, as with many studies, the terminology invoked by those on the political Left muddies the waters. For example, a “median salary” differs from an “average salary” and this distinction alters the interpretation of the data significantly, especially if one considers wage plus tips received.
In his study, McKenzie identified 3 factors typically excluded from discussion about tipping:
Raising the minimum wage may sound good, but it negatively impacts real people, real businesses, and real economies. As McKenzie observes:
Tipping is a pay mechanism that incentivizes servers to use their localized information for their own and their company’s benefit. Tipping aligns the incentives of servers and managers and owners for a common objective—to make people’s restaurant experiences a win for everyone. Through tipping, servers effectively become commissioned salespeople, enticed to add to customers’ experience and company sales.
Despite the facts and reason, the stormy petrels continue to belt out their siren song:
“Raise the minimum wage, even Pope John Paul II called for a living wage!”
Raising the federal minimum wage…yet another one of those “sound good, feel good” wacky ideas of the political Left intended to get more and more folks dependent upon the government for setting their wages.
In the absense of facts and reason, ideas like this end up hurting the economy, businesses, and the very people those ideas were intended to benefit.
Let the discussion begin…
To read Richard McKenzie's report, click on the following data
A dermatologist and skin cancer surgeon in Laguna Beach, CA, Bobby Awadalla, performs 1k+ surgeries for skin cancer annually and that number is rising. Baby Boomers are Awadalla’s most regular patients:
Why aren’t people using sun blockers? According to Dr. Awadalla:
People resist putting cream on their skin because they don't like the greasy feel and smell. Athletes don't like sunscreen dripping into their eyes.
The Motley Monk concurs. His dermatologist told The Motley Monk that he has to use sunscreen and wear a hat outdoors on sunny days. Why? Like those other Baby Boomers, The Motley Monk has had several bouts with skin cancer…not from indoor tanning beds but being forced to play outside in the sun while growing up. Those sunscreens are nasty feeling and tend to run into the eyes during a sweaty round of golf. At least they don't smell like they used to...rancid coconut cream.
According to the Orange County Register, while eating lunch at a cafe in Los Angeles one day, Awadalla had an "Aha!" moment, triggered by a man he saw dressed in athletic gear downing an energy drink. Awadalla thought:
If we can make skin care as easy and delicious as drinking a Red Bull, I thought, people would use it more.
That sparked the dermatologist's entrepreneurial spirit who formulated a product that combines 30 vitamins, phytonutrients, and antioxidants—including beta carotene and grapeseed extract—which have been demonstrated to protect the skin from the sun's harmful ultraviolet rays. Dr. Awadalla’s product works by absorbing UV rays, protecting and repairing DNA and collagen, and reducing inflammation to decrease damage and the severity of sunburns. He notes:
When UV rays reach the skin, whether you get a sunburn or not, skin cells, DNA and collagen can be irreversibly damaged, which can lead to aging and skin cancer. Despite mainstream thinking, our bodies are naturally good at protecting us from the sun, as they have been doing it for centuries. We have countless internal mechanisms to protect our skin from UV radiation but they get depleted. With the proper supplements, we can help strengthen this natural protection significantly.
Following 3 months of clinical trials, Awadalla’s product—“UVO”—was released in the marketplace.
Here's the twist: The user consumes a flavored, 12-ounce bottle of UVO that provides 3-5 hours of protection. Maximum benefits kick in after 1 hour. A bit expensive @ $5/bottle, perhaps UVO might make using sunscreen more palatable.
Let the discussion begin…
To read the Orange County Register article about Dr. Awadalla, click on the following link:
This morning, The Motley Monk happened upon a bit of research that has increased his knowledge base about a mysterious matter: Researchers have identified a phenomenon that’s apparently unique to some females.
Called “Resting B**** Face” (RBF), the phenomenon is characterized by the lack of a smile and expression of contempt, superiority, and irritation.
That got The Motley Monk to thinking:
According to CNN, behavioral neuroscientists Abbed Macbeth and Jason Rogers discovered that most of the folks who attempt to hold an expressionless face—as that’s measured on a Noldus Information Technology device using FaceReader software—will register as 97% neutral.
However, females exhibiting RBF register 200% more measurable emotion, most of it being contempt, namely, “the feeling that something is worthless or deserving of scorn.”
What The Motley Monk learned about RBF that males, in particular, should note is how those females exhibiting it do not intend to. Macbeth notes:
[T]here’s something that is unconsciously showing up on people’s faces when people think they are just being neutral
How many fathers have asked their daughters, “Why the pouty face?”
Just being neutral? Or, is RBF natural—“really nothing”—as some claim?
In contrast to Macbeth’s evidence, The Motley Monk has been on the receiving end of plenty of RBFs over the decades. However, it wasn’t “resting” but “active.”
Some husbands The Motley Monk polled this morning seem to have experienced and know this phenomenon quite well. After describing their experiences, most responded to The Motley Monk’s inquiry about how RBF might be both active and intentional:
You might say that. But, as for myself, I couldn’t possibly comment.
Given these anectodal, perhaps Macbeth and Rogers should inquire into “Active B**** Face,” the phenomenon characterized by a female’s intentional lack of a smile and purposeful expression of contempt, superiority, and irritation.
Let the discussion begin…
To access the CNN article, click on the following link:
Just when The Motley Monk thinks he’s heard it all, a news report comes along that turns everything upside-down.
To wit: Jamie and Chloe O’Herlihy.
As reported in Caters News, the siblings were born as brothers but are now sisters.
As a child, Jamie had always dreamed of having a sister. When her mother became pregnant, Jamie was elated to learn that the doctors thought Chloe was a girl due to her position in the womb.
However, like many things for which young people hope, that infant in the womb wasn’t a sister:
When my mum came home with Daniel I threw a proper hissy fit. I was not having any of it. From the age of two I was dressing her up in tutus.
Last summer, the siblings traveled home to their native Cork, Ireland. During a conversation, Jamie told Chloe (Daniel) about struggling with her gender identity. And, as things are these days, it ends up that Chloe also had been struggling with her gender identity. Some days later, both came out as transgender.
In an interview, 23-year-old Jamie said:
I tried to ignore it but it got to the point where when the morning came round, I didn’t want to take off the drag because it was a better representation of me than I was. So I came out to Chloe and our mum last summer, and by November I had come out to all my friends and colleagues.
Jamie and Chloe are planning to undergo “gender reassignment” surgery. It “won’t be drastic,” 20-year-old Chloe says, just a procedure to enhance their “beauty in a more female way.”
Jamie’s take on leaving her male past as officially behind? She observed:
I do not want to change too much, but I also don’t want to look in the mirror and see any semblance of male. It sounds dramatic, but I’m trying to undo the wrong that was done to me at birth and I don’t need any reminders of the struggle of having to carry this male body.
Just when he thought he had heard it all, The Motley Monk now hears that “wrong”—gender misassignment--transpires at birth. The world is upside down.
Let the discussion begin…
To access the Caters News article, click on the following link:
Mom was right: Wear sunscreen. Or else...
Like The Donald or not, he’s not quite the ignorant, knuckle-dragging Neanderthal that his political enemies are trying to get the folks to believe.
Judging from the Republican primaries, The Donald successfully ascribed adjectives to his political enemies, each one searing a particular image into the voters’ minds. Among others, remember:
Having cleared the Republic field, The Donald is now using the same strategy as he approaches the general election:
The point of this strategy, in the estimation of The Motley Monk, is not that The Donald’s strategy has demonstrated its efficacy in searing those images into the voters’ mind and that has translated into votes. For example, while in some polls The Donald currently leads HRC, the fact is that HRC’s trend line for the past 3 months is on a downward trajectory while The Donald’s is on an upward trajectory. No, The Motley Monk’s point is that his political enemies “misunderestimate” the strategy’s subliminal power.
And, U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) had better be on high alert.
Why has The Donald started calling the Massachusetts senator “Pocahontas” Warren?
The answers on the part of the political chattering class vary:
While those answers may be correct, all overlook one item: What The Donald’s political enemies don’t “get” is that The Donald is a master in marketing a brand.
Like him or not, The Donald has demonstrated that ability in spades this election cycle.
But, why “Pocahontas” Elizabeth Warren?
The likely explanation is that The Donald wants to sear into the minds of folks two images of fellow citizens who the folks resent. Namley: Senator Warren represents a member of the protected class who also takes advantage of the unprotected class.
With one word—“Pocahontas”—The Donald has effectively communicated that the multi-million $$$ Senator Warren is not only a well-entrenched member of the Establishment but has also availed herself of the freebies the Establishment doles out to the protected class. In other words, “Pocahontas” Warren is a double dipper of whom The Donald said, “She is a total failure and we’ll take no more of this!"
“Pocahontas” Warren had better watch out, however. The Motley Monk has discovered a new Pocahontas who has arrived in town!
Let the discussion begin...
Pier Giorgio Michelangelo Frassati was a handsome, fun-loving, athletic, courageous, and devout Catholic born in 1901 into a prominent Italian family. He died at the young age of 24 and has since become the model for lay people all over the world.
Beatified in 1990 by Saint Pope John Paul II and named "The Man of the Eight Beatitudes," Pier Giorgio teaches us that holiness is possible for everyone. Always "Toward the top!"
Get to know Pier Giorgoi:
Pier Georgio's holiness didn't leave the world when he did, as he continues to inspire young people today.
Will Pier Georgio be named a saint?
Perhaps. Consider Kevin Becker's incredible recovery from a coma and life-threatening brain injuries through the intercession of Blessed Pier Georgio (although it has not yet been Vatican-verified as an "official miracle").
"O merciful God,
Who through the perils of the world
deigned to preserve by Your grace Your
servant Pier Giorgio Frassati pure of heart
and ardent of charity, listen, we ask You,
to our prayers and, if it is in Your designs
that he be glorified by the Church,
show us Your will, granting us the graces
we ask of You, through his intercession,
by the merits of Jesus Christ, Our Lord. Amen."
+Maurillo, Archbishop of Turin
To learn more about Blessed Pier Georgio Frassati, click here.
CNBC.com is reporting that Obamacare is going to become even more the Unaffordable Care Act in 2017.
How much unaffordable?
Why? Healthcare insurers have suffered massive losses on the Obamacare exchanges for the past two years. In addition, drug costs are skyrocketing.
Weren’t the folks promised that the “massive purchasing power” of the federal government would “drive down the cost curve”?
Really? Who believed any of that...except perhaps for those “unprotected” folks who drink the Kool-Aid served to them by those “protected” folks who are provided or able to purchase the high-tier Obamacare “gold” plan:
The worst hit will be folks who have been using the low-tier “bronze” plan which has been largest, single source of losses for healthcare insurers.
Why? The low rates attract patients whose costs are oftentimes higher, but then then drop coverage during the year, leaving the healthcare insurers eating a 20%-30% loss for each patient.
Some healthcare insurers are abandoning the bronze plan, requiring those folks to move to the mid-tier “silver” plans in 2017. Those folks might see as much as a 70% increase, at least that’s the case for the folks in Virginia.
Sticker shock? Heck no. When ever has the government demonstrated it can do something at a lower price, with better quality, and in a more timely way than the free market?
To reiterate the simple fact: Obamacare was designed to fail and it is so that a single payer system (i.e., the federal government) will step in to “straighten out the mess that the folks are now so upset about.”
Pretty clever, no? Get more unprotected folks on the dole with all of those “freebies” so they feel just like the protected folks do...and then pass the increasing costs of government directly to all of those unprotected folks while the protected folks have exactly what they want: High-tier, free gold healthcare insurance for life with the unprotected folks paying for it.
Quite a scheme! It was baked into Obamacare scheme from the beginning.
No surprise here.
Let the discussion begin…
To read the CNBC.com article, click on the following link:
With all of the hype of some many Americans being overweight (which usually means “high Body Mass Index” or “obese”), researchers in Denmark suggest pausing for a moment and taking a deep breath.
In an article published by the Journal of the American Medical Association, the researchers suggest that obesity may not cut years off of a person’s life. Their data indicate that the risk that an obese individual will die prematurely has dropped 30% over the past 4 decades.
Translation: The risk of dying early for any reason is now about the same among obese individuals as it is among normal-weight individuals. Better yet: A BMI of 27—meaning “overweight”—appears to have the lowest risk of premature death from all causes.
There is one caveat: Longer life might not be better life, particularly if an overweight or obese individual struggles with chronic disease like diabetes and cardiovascular disease as well as problems with knees and joints.
What this all mean? According to the study’s lead researcher, Dr. Borge Nordestgaard, of the Institute of Clinical Medicine at the University of Copenhagen:
So if you have a bad conscience about being a little bit overweight, that you're going to die early, maybe that's not actually the case. But our data should not be used as an excuse to eat a lot more or to become overweight if you are not.
The ideal is that folks be at their optimal weight, making an effort to reach their personal best through healthy eating and exercise. That’s what reduces the risk of chronic disease. It also promotes overall good health and well-being.
The Motley Monk's “take away”? What’s “optimal” varies from person to person, perhaps due to genetics. Shaming or compelling what used to be called “heavier” folks to lose weight just because they are heavier isn’t necessarily going to make them healthier and, it may be, unhealthy for them.
Let the discussion begin...
To read the JAMA article, click on the following link:
The most ill-served of public school patrons--the victims of the monopoly--are the children of families living in poverty in the nation's urban centers. To remedy that disservice, the parents of those children want charter schools.
Why? So their children will receive the benefits of an education, just like the children of parents who live in the suburbs and exurbs.
Charter schols are a big business in California, with the nation's second largest public school district--Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD)--experiencing a "boom" in charter schools. That allows parents of qualifying children to enroll their children in charter schools as the "cost of tuition" (the per pupil funding) follows the child.
How big was that boom? Hollywood PATCH.com is reporting that, in 2015, $500M worth of per pupil funding to LAUSD went to 221 charter schools--the most in the nation--having grown by 300% between 2005 and 2015. Last year, that funding paid tuition for the 16% of LAUSD students whose parents have opted them out of the monopoly.
Isn't that terrific? Parents who want their children to receive the benefits of an education but otherwise couldn't get them out of those failing urban public schools are doing so in record numbers in LAUSD. Bravo!
But, rather than ask why those parents are marching their children over to charter schools and doing something to remedy the sources of the problem, the United Teachers-Los Angeles (UT-LA)--the public school teachers' union--is screaming foul.
UT-LA commissioned a study to determine just how much money those 221 charter schools--56 of which operate rent-free on district campuses--were sucking out of the monopoly. (Note: Those "campuses" are otherwise empty public schools and "rent-free" keeps the tuition cost down to LAUSD.)
According to the study, LAUSD "lost":
Of these findings, the President of UT-LA, Alex Caputo-Pearl, said:
This report is a first step in a necessary process to understand what it would take to have a sustainable system for all students, both in charters and in district schools. It took over 12 years of declining enrollment at LAUSD to get an accounting of the financial strain of charter school growth. We cannot wait another 12 years to address the consequences it is having on public education and our students.
No doubt about it: Those charter schools--and the educators working in them--are really putting it to LAUSD! It won't be long before the public school monopoly in Los Angeles will have to confront some daunting financial facts, because more than 16% of the folks just plain don't want their product anymore.
What are those union bosses going to do to win back those disaffected, if not disgruntled customers?
Let the discussion begin...
To access the HollywoodPATCH.com, article, click on the following link:
One would think that with the liberals having controlled U.S. higher education for the past 5 decades, every glass ceiling and every disadvantage that the liberal stormy petrels accuse conservatives of perpetrating upon females would have disappeared in the Academy.
But, not so, according to a study published in the American Economic Review: Papers and Proceedings:
Using previously unavailable data concerning 1,237 students who received Ph.D.s from 4 U.S. universities between 2007-2010 as well as support for their research projects while completing their degrees, the researchers found:
In a news release, a co-author of the study and professor of economics at Ohio State University, said Bruce Weinberg, noted:
There's a dramatic difference in how much early-career men and women in the sciences are paid. We can't tell from our data what's going on there. There's probably a combination of factors. Some women may consciously choose to be primary caregivers and pull back from work. But there may also be some employers putting women on a "mommy track" where they get paid less.
Could it possibly be? Can't be a pattern, can it?
Hmmmm..it's the same with HRC's campaign and the Clinton Global Initiative!
Let the discussion begin...
To access the webistes identified in this post, click on the following links:
"This is not an ideological war between competing ideas. This is about defending ourselves, children and future generations from the demonic idolatry that says children do not need mothers and fathers. It denies human nature and wants to cut off an entire generation from God."
That's the take-away quote from the Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, Cardinal Robert Sarah, who spoke at yesterday's 12th annual National Catholic Prayer Breakfast in Washington, DC.
According to CNSNews.com, that wasn't all Cardinal Sarah had to say to those in attendance. Concerning the United States, in particular, he made 3 observations:
And then Cardinal Sarah took off the gauntlets, making some judgments:
In the name of tolerance, the Church’s teaching on marriage, sexuality and [the] human person are being dismantled. The legalization of same-sex marriage, you're beginning to accept contraception within healthcare programs and even bathroom bills that allow men to use the women’s restroom and locker rooms. Should not a biological man use the men’s restroom? How simpler can that concept be?
The Motley Monk would observe that Cardinal Sarah premised his three observations and judgments upon two phenomena:
Americans like to think of themselves as a force for good in the world and in many ways they are. That said, Cardinal Sarah has issued a dire warning: The Evil One is corrupting their souls--destroying the goodness that's within--and making of them willing accomplices in the effort to drive God not only out of the nation's soul but also the souls of people across the globe who follow America's lead.
Cardinal Sarah's solution? He said:
Be prophetic, be faithful, pray [ for America's soul of America and to ] help stem the tide of evil that is spreading throughout the world. For in the end, it is God or nothing.
A right-wing, conservative zealot, judgmental nut job?
Let the discussion begin...
To access the webpages identified in this post, click on the following links:
Happened upon this item today on Facebook:
Talk about talent!
The folks over at the Family Policy Institute of Washington (Lynwwood, WA) went over to Seattle University to interview students concering their thoughts about gender.
The interviews were then packaged in a "Watters World" like video:
The responses to the questions were predictable, coming as they did from undergraduates receiving a "liberal" education "the Seattle University way." That is:
We believe the sharpest minds are well-rounded. Educating mind, body and spirit is not multiple choice....At Seattle University, we dare to become greater than the sum of our parts, to impact locally and shape our global environment. Here we dare to discern the better way forward.
Obviously, these Seattle University students have drunk the Kool-Aid and their minds have been reprogrammed to believe "non-binary gender theory" which makes it possible for the wizards of smart to turn 2 into 58 for those of the Facebook sect and 64 for those of the Tumblr sect. This outcome is entirely unsurprising of a public institution of so-called "higher" education.
Founded in 1891, Seattle University is a Jesuit Catholic university whose administration, faculty, and staff--who treasure the institution's Jesuit ethos--seek to be the premier independent university of the Northwest in academic quality, Jesuit Catholic inspiration, and service to society. Those administrators, faculty, and staff also "seek to develop responsible leaders committed to the common good."
To represent the reality better, those administrators should revise Seattle University's website to state: "We seek to develop responsible leaders who are confused about gender and committed to the common good.
Let the discussion begin...
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The UK international market research firm, YouGov.com, last week released a public opinion poll indicating that between 2015 and 2016, Pope Francis’ popularity declined more than any male public figure. The poll—based upon 31k interviews of folks living in 23 nations—found that Bill Gates, Vladimir Putin, the Dalai Lama, David Beckham, and Stephen Hawking are more popular as male leaders than the Pope.
How big a decline for the Argentinian Pope? As a male leader, his popularity declined from 6th to 13th place globally. In Argentina, Pope Francis placed 4th, behind the Dalai Lama and Argentine soccer players Lionel Messi and Carlos Tevez. In the United States, the Pope scored better: He is the 2nd-most admired male leader, following President Barack Obama.
YouGov.com didn’t ask why the folks prefer one male leader over another. That said, YouGov.com did suggest that Pope Francis’ dramatic decline in global popularity may be explained the “expectations of reform” which distanced Francis from his predecessors have waned as the Pope increasing becomes “institutionalized.” The image is one of the “people’s Pope” being transformed into the “institution’s Pope.”
That assessment—what basically amounts to an informed guess—may not be all that far from the truth.
Over at MondayVatican.com today, Andrea Gargliarducci provides some perspective The Motley Monk considers spot on in this regard.
Take Pope Francis’ widely- (and wildly-, too) publicized response last week to a question about the possibility of women deaconesses in the Roman Catholic Church. The Pope expressed interest in setting up a commission to make a determination about the topic, even though the then-Prefect of the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith (aka., the “Inquisition”) (CDF), Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, charged the International Theological Commission (ITC) with making a determination.
The ITC—an advisory body to CDF—issued a 2002 report titled “From the Diakonia of Christ to the Diakonia of the Apostles.” Although the document isn’t official Church teaching, it does represent orthodox and learned Catholic opinion concerning the topic. In short, the answer was “No.”
What’s important—as the ITC report relates to Pope Francis’ waning popularity across the globe—is how, as Gagliarducci observes, the Pope “advances timid openings about a possible commission that in fact often freezes the discussion.” The mainstream media—along with those who elected Jorge Bergoglio—then exploit his declarations to further their ends. Thus, Pope Francis appears in some instances to be (and may actually intend to be) sending a progressive, close to liberal German theology. Yet, in other instances, he appears to be (and may actually intend to be) sending an old-fashioned conservative, hardline theology that’s replete with traditional principles.
In sum, Pope Francis is sending mixed messages (“theologies”) that end up confusing the folks in the pews on either side of the aisle who are listening intently. One day, each group—whether in an interview session with the mainstream media on Alitalia’s “Shepherd 1,” in a Q-and-A at a papal audience, or an off-the-cuff remark when he goes off script—hears its much-cherished theology of Church promoted. On the next day, both hear the opposite. And, to boot, the Vatican’s press office appears flat-footed as its coming clarifications of what the Pope said (or didn’t say) are rather slow in coming.
The narrative the mainstream media and those who elected Pope Francis exploit these mixed messages, presenting an image of a progressive Pope—who desperately wants to bring the Church into modernity—being opposed by those wicked and evil, misogynistic clerical curialists whose sole interest is in preserving their power over the Church.
The other side exploits these messages as well. Their narrative is that the progressives are pressuring a pastorally-oriented and caring Pope Francis to adopt heterodox theologies that ultimately will undermine the Church and its mission in the modern world.
Both may be correct and incorrect in their caricatures, The Motley Monk would observe. But, if Pope Francis cannot find a “middle way,” Gagliarducci observes:
…there will be a sort of hidden schism between those who are faithful to doctrine and those who do not care about the teaching of the Church. The latter are the new pagans Ratzinger described back in the 50s.
A “hidden schism”? A schism seems pretty obvious to The Motley Monk as well as to many of those who ask him “What is Pope Francis is really up to?” That schism has been alive and well for nearly 5 decades, as obvious as the Pope is Catholic!
The important point is that popes don’t need to be popular to be effective in their role as spiritual and moral leaders.
But, by sending mixed messages, as Pope Francis is wont to do, no wonder the folks in the pews on either side of the aisle are confused and so many of them across the globe have lost interest in him as a male leader! They aren’t sure where he stands when it comes controversial theological and moral issues.
Let the discussion begin…
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The owner of Kabuto Japanese Steak House and Sushi Bar in Charlotte, North Carolina, Martin Tanaka, has posted a great sign that potential patrons had better read before entering the premises, lest they find themselves being dismissed from those premises by Tanaka himself:
Tanaka’s instructions are straightforward:
According to WSOC-TV.com, the problem is that Tanaka’s restaurant has hibachi-style seating, so customers often share tables with strangers. The sign, Tanaka says, is about demonstrating respect to others so everyone can enjoy a good meal.
Why? Customers are scared or shy to confront other patrons, so Tanaka must do it. Plus, customers who don’t follow the rules are allowed a second chance. However, if they refuse to pull up their pants, take down their hoodies, or stop talking on their cellphones at the hibachi table, they’re asked to leave the premises.
Makes sense, no?
Apparently not. Some assert that Tanaka is making a statement about race.
Tanaka responds that the sign has absolutely nothing to do with race but behavior, citing as evidence the simple fact that he’s turned away people of all races for breaking the rules. Tanaka observes:
Our regular customers are families, and we count on a lot of small children to come to this restaurant. I believe our society is lacking on respect, and I think we're falling behind on it.
Isn’t that the truth?
As common courtesy and public manners have degenerated in recent decades to the point that some patrons of restaurants don’t give one whit about how their behavior affects other patrons, Tanaka sets an excellent example for owners of all types of restaurants, Hibachi-style seating or not.
Let the discussion begin...
To access the website identified in this post, click on the following link:
Meanwhile: The intergenerational theft continues: