Wow! Have you seen the cartoons from Sherffius?

February 26, 2007

John Sherffius draws for the Daily Camera in Boulder, Colorado. It might be something about the mountains — Pat Oliphant started out with the Denver Post. Sherfius often cartoons in color. His drawings pack a real punch, sometimes a gut punch.

Sherfius - Habeas Corpus

The Pulitzer Prize judges have not yet voted Sherffius as even a finalist, but with his cartoons over the past few months, such recognition should come.

Sherfius on Iraq-Iran similarities

In addition to the gallery at the Daily Camera website, you can look at Sherffius’ portfolio at Cagle’s Political Cartoon site, an excellent source of current political cartoons.

More cartoons below the fold. Read the rest of this entry »

Nimitz party follow-up

February 25, 2007

So, how was the party in Fredricksburg?  Admiral Nimitz did not put in an appearance, from all accounts.

Can you imagine some of the possibilities for study in small groups at the National Museum of the Pacific War?

Among other things, the Nimitz Hotel has been renovated (founded by Adm. Nimitz’s grandfather).

What’s there?

The site has grown into a 34,000-square-foot site featuring indoor exhibit space. Located on six acres now, the center includes the George Bush Gallery, the Admiral Nimitz Museum, the Plaza of the Presidents, the Veterans’ Walk of Honor and Memorial Wall, the Japanese Garden of Peace, the Pacific Combat Zone and the Center for Pacific War Studies.

With the conclusion of this large renovation project that began in 2004, museum coordinators are turning their attentions to another big project. An additional 40,000-square-foot expansion is planned in the future, with ground-breaking set this spring.

I can’t find, but I hope that, the renovations include space for scholars to study, and especially for high school students to learn.  Austin-area high schools would be lining up to make overnight field trips — but for the restrictions put on teaching and learning by Texas’ testing system, the limiting list of Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS), and the test, the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) .

Maybe teacher training.  Liberty FundBill of Rights Institute?  Are you guys watching this?

Politics in haiku, poetry in research

February 24, 2007

Here it is in haiku:

Let them sleep, like dogs? Oh, no:
Refute them at once.

Here is the title of the thesis the poem represents:

“How to handle opposing arguments in persuasive messages: A meta-analytic review of the effects of one-sided and two-sided messages”

Haiku is probably easier for campaign managers to remember — good advice in 17 syllables.

Jim has a contest going — he challenged people to boil their recent academic publications down to the 17-syllable poetry form called haiku, for social science research, humanities publications, physical sciences, and a category called tech/computers/internet.

I tell speech students and clients that any good argument or thesis can be boiled down to a 30-second statement. Haiku may be a little too brief for my purposes, but it’s more artful, too. Some of the poems are pretty good, none are really bad.

Grad students with too little art in their lives, perhaps. Go vote and encourage them to communicate better, with poetry, even.

Here’s a piece of social science research I’d like to read:

dixie chicks blacklist
krugman blames clear channel (jerks)
nope, it was rednecks

(“Elites, Masses, and Media Blacklists: The Dixie Chicks Controversy”)

Tip of the old scrub brush to Bug Girl.

If California can’t pass a ban on spanking . . .

February 23, 2007

. . . what are the chances Texas would ban corporal punishment in schools?

The Washington Post reports a California lawmaker abandoned her efforts to get a ban on spanking (by anyone, not just teachers), after rather massive opposition developed. She had never introduced the bill.

Instead, San Francisco Bay area Assemblywoman Sally Lieber introduced a more narrow bill on Thursday she said would help district attorneys more easily prosecute parents who cross the line from punishment into physical abuse.

Lieber is seeking to classify a laundry list of physical acts against young children, including hitting with a belt, switch or stick, as unjustifiable and grounds for prosecution, probation or a parental time-out _ a class on nonviolent parenting.

The Texas bill banning corporal punishment in schools is still seriously dead.

107th Carnival of Education

February 23, 2007

More than 50 entries, at History is Elementary. If you’re not reading that blog anyway, you ought to. Go see.

St. John of Kenty, or St. John Cantius, patron saint of teachers

St. John of Kenty, or St. John Cantius

Patron saint of teachers

Eugene, Oregon’s Japanese internment memorial

February 22, 2007

11th grade history courses should be finishing up with World War II about now. If the course covered the material planned, it included a discussion of the internment of Japanese-Americans in the U.S. during World War II. The discussion should have included questions about whether the internment was just, and whether the reparations paid and apology made later by the U.S. government adequately compensated the victim internees.

Eugene, Oregon, hosted a “civic control station” where Japanese-Americans were forced to register. Most were later sent to internment camps — from Oregon, many were sent to Tule Lake, California. Oregonians, especially those who were interned and their families, are working to honor the internees and pass on the stories of the events. They want to highlight the fact that many of the interned citizens served gallantly during the war.

A memorial is being built in Eugene, featuring a statue of a young Japanese American girl sitting atop her luggage on the way to internment, reaching for a butterfly.

Below the fold I copy the editorial from the Eugene Register-Guard about the memorial — I’ve taken the liberty of copying the entire piece, as well as including a link (free subscription required). If the Register-Guard wishes I not promote their work this way, they know where to find me. It’s a good editorial on important issues, and it deserves broader circulation and preservation.

Read the rest of this entry »

Dressing as Jesus for Halloween

February 22, 2007

Educators get a few seconds to make a decision, usually with other kids yelling and a fight breaking out across the hallway. Lawyers and judges have more time.

But even with the advantage of cool reflection, the levels of irony in this case are too thick to cut through.

Can a kid dress as Jesus about to be crucified, for Halloween? Is the costume religious? If so, is the school’s allowing it to be worn an impermissible endorsement of religion? Is the costume blasphemous? If so, would the school be sued if they didn’t ban it? Is the costume in good taste, compared to the kid dressed as a chainsaw serial-killer, or one of the phantasms from Nightmare on Elm Street?

How do 10-year-old kids always come up with these questions?

With the disclosure that what I have comes from a press release from the Alliance Defense Fund, which has its biases, I post the details of the case as we have them so far, below the fold. Read the rest of this entry »

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