Sunday, December 30, 2018

Hungary Bans Gender Studies…Not An Academic Subject

By Professor Doom

    We really are coming to a crossroads in higher ed. A few decades ago, the possibility that a whole department, based on an entire academic subject, would be tossed as “not useful knowledge” would be considered inconceivable.

      But today, in the United States, this sort of thing is common. Shakespeare is being tossed in exchange for a lesbian author. Computer science departments are being shut down, leading to a shortage of computer scientists where the world really needs people who understand computers. Even mathematics is turning into a boiler room operation on many campuses, focusing on passing students over academics.

     With all the academics being removed from campus, what to replace it with? Many campuses are throwing in ever more Education courses, knowing they are frauds any student can ace without effort. We know they are frauds because they’re not quite politically protected: we can inspect what goes on in their classes, and since their graduates often go off to teach, we can judge the quality of the coursework by the quality of the graduates, for the most part.

     Another new branch of “academic” courses has been affecting our campuses, Gender Studies, and unlike Education, these courses are becoming mandatory. Now, the graduates of these fields aren’t nearly so vulnerable as in Education, and so it’s not so easy to criticize their uselessness by examining how they succeed in the (non-existent) job market. Across the country, these courses, despite their clear lack of educational value, are springing up, detracting from the education our students receive.

     Well, across THIS country, yes, but it’s clear not every country is subjecting itself to this madness:

     I grant Hungary isn’t the higher educational capital of the world, but at least, finally, some place is fighting back.

To be fair, just two universities in the country even offer the program at the graduate level, and only 13 students total enrolled in them this year.

      While, yes it’s fair to say the above, it’s also fair to say the Gender Studies blighting our campuses were small programs too, years ago…kudos to Hungary for nipping this abomination in the bud. Did they have more specific reasons beyond the perfectly justifiable “this is not an academic subject”?

“There is no economic rationale for studies such as these,” he said, as the degree does not “furnish students with skills that can be readily and directly converted on the labour market." He added that the programs aren’t sustainable and "take away valuable resources from other programs, deteriorating the economic stability of universities.”

      That’s a pretty thorough takedown. While “economically useless” is all a state school can really understand, the fact that these courses are taking away from the time students can spend learning real academics is all the justification necessary for elimination of these wasteful and irrelevant courses.

      It’s a shame America is far too arrogant to take advice and learn from other countries, but if that posture should ever change, I hope it takes a peek at Hungary which clearly has something to say we should heed.

Thursday, December 27, 2018

Electronics Journal Secretly Retracts 29 Articles

By Professor Doom

    Our “peer review” system of publishing research is clearly highly flawed. In less objective fields like psychology, past half of such published research has been shown to be not reproducible. Some of this research has been foundational to psychology, such as the famous Stanford Prison Experiment…despite the fame, it’s a fraud.

     In medicine, we also have this problem, and even wide swaths of cancer research are probably fraudulent. Of course, I have a front row seat to how unpredictable cancer can be.

      Even hard sciences are obviously vulnerable, as shocking as that sounds. Today I’m looking at events at an electronics journal…surely peer review could check whether the research claims are valid? Perhaps not, but there’s something even more interesting here:

     Ok, clearly they found a serious peer review policy violation here. If I were to conjecture, I would suppose that the “peers” reviewing the papers were a loaded bunch, possibly just one guy posing as a half dozen or more guys. That’s just a guess, and it doesn’t matter, the journal found violations and reacted appropriately.

For now, the IEEE said that "three volunteer editors identified during the investigation as involved in the misconduct have been permanently excluded from IEEE membership.

--IEEE is the organization which publishes the journal

     Being a journal editor, a legitimate one, is a thankless job. Often you hire “assistant” journal editors to help with the work, for no pay (I’ve done this a few times). And so the game was fixed to get certain articles published with scant oversight. Fair enough.

      But wait, there’s more:

Inside Higher Ed asked IEEE a series of questions about which papers were retracted, which editors had been barred from working with the group, how they violated peer-review rules and whether the papers had flaws that had been identified or were being retracted solely because of problems with the peer-review process. IEEE declined to answer any of those questions.

     Seriously, they won’t say which articles have been un-published due to fraud? Should a scientist then play it safe by disregarding all articles in this journal?

     This behavior raises many questions, questions unasked by the article I’m quoting from. Chief among them? WHY are they protecting the fraudulent editors? If they did the decent thing and revealed which articles are unpublished, it wouldn’t take much to backtrack to figure out who the associated editors are.

     Instead, we have a mysterious 29 unpublished papers…already published in physical documents. Can’t tell you what they are, or course.

     This, ultimately, brings up the real problem in our journal and peer review process: lack of integrity. There is simply no way a journal with integrity would protect fraudsters, quite possibly allowing them to commit the same fraud at a different journal. These people committed a crime against hard science, and the journal will cover for them. Yeah, “why” is a fair question to ask, shame I’m alone in being curious why they’d do that.



Monday, December 24, 2018

Anonymous Pamphleteer Mocks University “Queen”

By Professor Doom

     I’m hardly the only “anonymous” critic of higher ed out there, and the reason there are so many of us is pretty simple: the rulers of higher ed hold such incredible power, that concepts such as “free speech” or “academic freedom” don’t provide even a patina of protection from those on high.

     My criticisms on my blog are probably unknown to most of the leaders I’ve mentioned even though my blog has been around 5 years; I’m fine with that, as I’m more about letting people know what kind of “leaders” our campuses often sport than attacking the leaders themselves.

     One anonymous critic is making very sure the target of his concern knows about it:

     These pamphlets are modeled after the Common Sense pamphlets, which were certainly a factor in starting the Revolutionary War. A quick primer on those:

The broadsides borrow the title of revolutionary-era author Thomas Paine’s 1776 treatise: “Common Sense.”…Paine argued -- anonymously at first -- that the colonies should fight for independence from King George III.

     The author is old school here, distributing copies of hand-lettered pamphlets throughout the campus.

…the anonymous pamphleteer portrays LIU president Kimberly Cline…000as “Queen Kimmy,” an out-of-touch royal who draws a “fat” $800,000 salary even as enrollment falters. (For the record, LIU’s latest IRS filings show Cline’s base salary at $761,066, with another $24,578 in “other reportable compensation.”)

     To be fair, the pamphlets are a little biased, but, much like the example above, only exaggerate a little. LIU, Long Island University, sports less than 20,000 students and bills itself as a non-profit. Doesn’t $800,000 a year (if you’ll forgive the exaggeration) strike the gentle reader as pretty excessive pay? It’d be like going to McDonald’s, and having $40 tacked onto your bill just to pay the CEO. Keep in mind, the queen Poo Bah here is serviced by a wide array of administrative support staff, each paid with similar exorbitance.

      So, she’s overpaid. Any other criticisms?

The so-called Friday Night Massacre calls out Cline’s Oct. 12 decision to enact what the pamphleteer calls “massive cuts” to spring 2019 classes. The pamphlets also note the distribution of 30 “death letters” to faculty, informing them that they’ll be out of a job after the spring semester. (A faculty representative told Inside Higher Ed that the total number of instructors subject to impending layoffs or tenure denials is about 16 to 18.)

     Hmm, the pamphleteer refers to “faculty,” which the university mouthpiece refers to “instructors.” I can’t help but wonder if the narrative is being shaped to make the pamphleteer look dishonest…I’m suspicious that’s the case.

       In addition to twisting things around, the university is going full-on with character attacks:

LIU spokesman Gordon Tepper told Inside Higher Ed that the author or authors of the “anonymous, factually incorrect, disrespectful, and sexist trash should be ashamed of themselves. The fact that the author refers to a distinguished university president as 'Queen' or 'Royal Majesty' on no fewer than 20 occasions in this unsourced rant speaks to a disturbed individual who clearly has issues with women in authority.”

     “Sexist trash”? “Disturbed”? “Issues with women in authority”? May as well just call him deplorable and call it a day.

     To be fair, the queen isn’t all bad:

In interviews, [queen] Cline has said…the university’s endowment has grown 267 percent, from $86 million to about $230 million.

     Gosh, with that kind of money, she could have kept the faculty, and then the school could boast of smaller classes. The school now has a bigger pot of money to be eventually looted, so there’s that.

     The queen’s greatest “crime” was merging the athletic programs; for some Byzantine reason, the school was simultaneously fielding Division I and Division II teams. So, she got rid of the latter. Hey, I’m all for cutting back on sportsball on campus. Trouble is, those Division II players came to campus because they were offered athletic scholarships, and to get one last chance to improve their skills enough to be professional.

     Athletes only have a limited time to get the most out of their careers. At the very least, she could give them fair warning to clear out by next year.

      Well, no, she just basically had her subjects listen to her decree:

Athletes learned about the move after being called out of class to watch her Oct. 3 news conference…thrown into turmoil the educational plans of hundreds of students. The planned merger would force athletes -- many of whom attend on scholarship -- to compete for a shrinking number of starting positions. Consolidating LIU Post and LIU Brooklyn’s athletics departments also puts many students’ futures in limbo,

     Yeah, that could have been handled with a bit more decency and much less arrogance—seriously, pulling students out of class to watch a speech?  Still, to her credit, she’ll honor all scholarship promises regardless of future athletic participation. Handled poorly and arrogantly…but some decency here all the same.

And Cline’s admissions operation “has failed since the day they got here,” he said, with declining numbers of incoming students most years. Post's first-year enrollment, which reached nearly 900 a decade ago, now sits at under 600.

     This is kind of cherry-picking, as the school has several campuses. So, sure, one campus, Post, isn’t doing so well. That said, the queen gets her pay based on the growth, growth, growth. Perhaps we should consider cutting back the pay when the performance isn’t so good. Gee, that’s what faculty are often faced with.

The university has clashed with faculty as well. In 2016, LIU locked out faculty from its Brooklyn campus over contract disputes. A year later, in 2017, Fevola said the university hadn’t laid off “a single faculty member,” adding, “we’re promoting people and granting tenure.”

     The gentle reader is probably wondering how a university spokesperson can say the above and present it as truth, when they’ve already said they got rid of some instructors, above.

      First, let’s talk about that “granting tenure” thing, because that’s key to the legerdemain here:

He said seven or eight faculty members who were up for tenure last spring were denied. Another nine or 10 probationary faculty received termination letters last spring. These instructors’ last employment date: Aug. 31, 2019. So faculty members will likely lose their jobs through contracts that aren't being renewed.

     If you apply for tenure, and are denied, you’re not fired but…you contract isn’t renewed. So, the guy’s out of a job, but not fired. Absolutely you can get rid of a few dozen faculty a year this way, and still stand in front of a camera, smile and say “we’re not firing anyone.”

      Only one comment bears counter-comment by me:

Ok, so the president is being criticized for taking home $800k/year while making severe budget cuts, and apparently mishandling the whole thing pretty badly. What part of [criticizing] that is sexist?

     I assure the gentle reader, if the queen here were some sort of minority, then the RACIST card would have been played as well…these guys are both predictable and limited in how they respond to criticism, after all.

       The most important war this country ever had was ignited, in part, by a pamphleteer. It may be too much to hope that LIU’s pamphleteer can accomplish nearly so much, but even if all he gets is a tiny revolution on one campus, I’ll certainly call it a win. If nothing else, at least he has style.

Friday, December 21, 2018

The Master’s of Arts Degree Exposed

By Professor Doom

“I’ll get my graduate degree!”

--it’s weird how there’s always a personal pronoun, in this case “my,” in these types of statements.

     Quite a number of college graduates get their spiffy degree, go out into the real world…and find out their degree is worthless. Trouble is, even with a worthless degree, they’ll still have to pay off the student loan debt, and doing so on a barista’s pay is daunting, if not impossible.

     But if you go back to school, to get that ever so precious “graduate degree,” you don’t have to make payments on your undergraduate debts. So now we have throngs of people filing in to graduate school.

      Now grad school tuition is much higher, and accreditations says even less about graduate education than it does about undergraduate education. So we have a huge profit motive, and a huge potential for corruption.

       I’ve noted that Administration grad school is a joke, and of course I’ve shown Education grad school is a joke. To be fair, you generally don’t fail graduate courses no matter how little or how poorly you do in them (my own eyeballs saw it enough times in grad school), so retention and other stats look good. On the other hand, actually getting the mathematics MA requires passing some tests outside of the classes being took—this allows the department to satisfy administrative demands, while still preserving the integrity of the degree.

     But those are only the degree programs I can discuss in any detail. One of the most common graduate degree programs is a Master’s in Communication. Because the basic Communication degree is worth so little (because it demands so little), there’s an extra demand for a “better” Communication degree.

       A YouTube video gives a first hand account of what an MA Communication degree entails. This is important because, much like with community college coursework, it’s reasonable suspect that what’s printed in the catalogue is unhinged from the reality of the actual courses.

     A typical Master’s degree runs around a dozen courses, taking three a semester for two years, though some places offer a “super-convenient” 1 year Master’s program. What were her courses like?

“…people who go into Communication tend to be vapid…”

     Good to see she knows her degree isn’t actually a brain-strainer.

“…as we go around the room on the room…sinking feeling…research interests are queer studies…Marxism…more Marxism…”

     Wait, so now Communication is now about ideology, too? That’s a shame.

      Her conservative leanings quickly led her to being attacked by the other students; I sure don’t recall anyone in Math grad school caring about politics. We were too busy trying to understand mathematics.

“Cultural Analysis…I gave a presentation on (the British) Empire, and showed them a clip…

--I apologize for a weak transcription. The clip is a balanced discussion of the British Empire, pointing out both its cruelties and its accomplishments.

      After her presentation, she had a discussion with the class about the balanced discussion of the effects of the British Empire upon the world.

“The Professor of the course posted on Facebook how I’m a defender of colonialism…”

      Hey, remember when a professor caught heat for publicly supporting a student who believed in heterosexual marriage as a good thing? I won’t be holding my breath to see if the professor here will get the same rough treatment.

“…in this course we read the original texts of Marx…”

--Seriously. I can’t make this stuff up. I remind the reader this graduate study in Communication.

     The grad student then goes on to list course after course of simply ideological indoctrination. I concede I don’t know exactly what should go into a graduate level Communications program but…it seems like it would involve how to operate at least some of the modern communications equipment which is so critical to every aspect of the modern world.

      I would have never suspected Communication was mostly about ideology.

“…in one of their classes they just meditated…”

      I point out, these students are paying many thousands of dollars for such “material.” Meditation is fine, mind you but…why pay so much? Honest, you can meditate at home.

“…I wrote a lot of reflection papers….”

      A reflection paper is just a short essay giving an opinion on something…you can’t do this wrong (great retention!), but is this really worth the graduate level tuition?

“…this was mostly a nothing class…”

     Bottom line, these guys pour out of grad school after taking a dozen or more courses, filled with ideology, nothing, or, at best, meditation.

     This student waited until after she graduated before spilling the beans on what her grad school experience was like, so she’s obviously clever, even as she’s annihilated her chances at a career in academia. She’s something of a celebrity, but her identity isn’t the issue here. It’ll be a long time before the fraud of (much of) graduate school is exposed, I admit, since we’re not even close to revealing the fraud of (much of) higher ed in general.

      But that day, like the day I’m finally done with cancer treatments, is coming. I sure hope to live to see it.


Tuesday, December 18, 2018

ACLU Opposes Letting Accused Males Have Rights

By Professor Doom

     I remember when I was a big fan of the ACLU, as they would defend the underdog, some deplorable guy who, even if I didn’t like whatever he said, I still felt he should have a defense from an organization skilled in protecting the rights all citizens of this country have.

     Those days seems to be over, as the ACLU really seems to be converged, taken over by Leftists who now feel only the people who think rightly deserve protection.  Heck, they’ve pretty much declared they no longer care about defending civil liberties, at least not if gets in the way of their ideology.

     I’ve written many times before how Title IX has turned into yet another weapon the Left uses to destroy faculty and students on campus who do not adhere to Leftist values (basically anyone to the right of Chairman Mao is fair game). Particularly vile is how a male, when accused of sexual wrongdoing by a female, can’t really defend himself, because he has so few rights. Yes, I know this happens to some extent off campus (Hi Justice Kavanaugh! Isn’t it odd how the witnesses who recanted their testimony won’t be charged with anything, despite the clear harm they’ve done to his family), but how the kangaroo campus court system handles these things is over-the-top.

     Betsy DeVos recently proposed, among many other things, giving rights to those accused under Title IX. That sounds like the kind of thing the old ACLU would approve…but what of today’s converged ACLU?

     Trump Derangement Syndrome (TDS) is a real thing, I have some friends with it, so filled with hatred of the man they can interpret nothing he does in a positive way, and readily believe any accusation made against him, even with a media well established as being miserly at best with the truth regarding Trump.

      So, while ordinarily the ACLU would want rights given to the accused, the fact that Trump’s representative is asking for such means they have no choice but to oppose, or so the headline says. What kind of reforms are we talking here?

The Title IX reforms, as David French aptly describes at National Review, requires colleges to end their kangaroo courts when it comes to sexual assault…The new rules require colleges to permit cross-examination of witnesses including the accuser by attorneys for the accused, and stops universities from allowing evidence from those who refuse cross-examination. Furthermore, the new Title IX regulations allow the accused to see the evidence given against them – and yes, there were schools that prohibited the accused from even knowing the nature of the accusations against them.

     Having personally been involved with a kangaroo court where evidence submitted by the accused was systematically destroyed, and then the accused was convicted because he couldn’t prove his innocence, I assure the gentle reader the above really is how many of our campus court systems are run.

      Gee whiz, none of the above sounds particularly unreasonable. Additionally, the definition of “sexual harassment” was tightened up, because it was clear the very loose definition was being abused by Title IX fiefdoms on campus.

     Surely the ACLU isn’t against putting at least some due process into the court system here? Allow me to edit their official statement:

…We strongly oppose it…inappropriately favoring the accused and letting schools ignore their responsibility under Title IX to respond promptly and fairly to complaints of sexual violence. 

      Hey, I concede the rights the accused have definitely slowed down the wheels of justice, but to snarl at every change as bad, even granting the accused the right to know what he’s accused of, strikes me at plenty deranged.

      Since I’m citing a decent news site, they allow comments, and one bears further discussion:

So the ACLU just came out as opposed to "Innocent until proven guilty"? Wow!
Why are rapes being investigated by Gender Studies professors and not the police?

     Yes, the ACLU does seem to have put itself in a funny position here.

      Why are rapes being investigated by Gender Studies professors? It’s a good question, and the answer involves quirks in our laws which grant our campuses (the older ones) considerable autonomy in how alleged crimes are investigated and punished. Yes, admin could pass over their power to the local police/legal system, but that would cut into their power…it’s not gonna happen.

      I also feel the need to point out that the kangaroo system for investigating rapes is often the same system used for investigating “improper” behavior by faculty (note carefully: espousing views to the right of Chairman Mao would be improper on many campuses). One the other hand, wildly inappropriate behavior by admin gets such a pass that they seldom even make it to the campus court system (eg, here, here, here, and here, among others).

       As a gratuitous kick, I also point out this is all paid for by the student loan scam.

Saturday, December 15, 2018

Universities Banning ALL CAPS For Assignments—They SCARE Students

By Professor Doom

     I’m always impressed by the bumblings of our leaders in higher ed, but I suppose I shouldn’t be. These guys have Ph.D.s, research degrees, but never do research. They soak up tons of money, but never seem to leave anything in the budget to help with education. Finally, they have and use incredible power over what goes on in the classroom, in education…but have never taught a course themselves.

     On community college campus, these guys have the most power because faculty there seldom have any defense, and I know I hated how every semester I was told to cram some new “initiative” down my student’s throats, and that I needed to show the leader’s ideas were effective, or else.

     That said, you can certainly see these clowns in action on a university campus:

---I see I’m pretty generous in calling them “leaders,” and I have to admit “bosses” is more accurate. Nobody follows them because of their leadership, after all.

     When giving assignments to students, you generally give them some guidelines. Some aren’t particularly easy to miss, e.g., “be sure to put your name on the paper,” but some things you really don’t want students doing, and often, a simple warning isn’t enough. So sometimes to emphasize instructions you might well hammer the point home, eg, “DO NOT USE WIKIPEDIA AS A SOURCE,” (good advice for my readers, incidentally. Infogalactic has many of the same topics covered, and it’s often a great source of amusement compare the two’s information).

      Yes, writing in all caps is bad form, and looks like you’re shouting, but if you don’t do that, and the student ignores the instructions, then if you dock points he’ll complain to admin and say it’s your fault because  you weren’t clear enough. Trust me, I’ve been on the business end of such shenanigans enough times.

      Faculty who write in all caps can say “hey, I tried to emphasize it with all caps. Can’t we let the student take some responsibility here?”

·               A memo sent out to Leeds Trinity staff said capitals could 'scare them into failure'

     How did higher ed ever get so backwards that even so simple a faculty attempt to help the student follow directions is now “scaring them into failure”?

It suggested that writing a word in caps could highlight the 'difficulty' of the assignment and therefore worry the students. 

      Wow. Such a confusion of ideas could only come from bosses leaders who’ve never taught a course in their lives. It’s a shame faculty are forced to heed the “wisdom” of these leaders.

The lecturer at the university told the outlet that despite the intelligence of their students they feel that they are fighting against the education system who want to treat them like children.
Adding: 'We are not doing our students any favours with this kind of nonsense.'

     Gosh, “the lecturer” didn’t want to give his name as he dared criticize what the boss said? I know, I’m in no position to cast judgment, and I’m not…I just want to reinforce that this is what higher “education” is on campus: whatever admin says it is, delivered by a thoroughly cowed faculty.

     Bottom line, higher education today is presented as “job training,” to get a high paying job, even. If the students are so coddled that even the very gentle yelling of ALL CAPS is deemed too frightening for them, how are they ever going to deal with an actual boss in the real world?

     It’s not a question the bosses in higher ed will ever answer, both because nobody is in a position to put the question to them, and because they honestly don’t care.

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

The Student As Prostitute…Now In The UK

By Professor Doom

       I’ve covered before how many college graduates now become prostitutes to help pay off their student debt, but that’s only addressing what happens after a student graduates and realizes her degree is worthless and has no choice.

       A far larger share of students become prostitutes, or semi-prostitutes (at the risk of splitting hairs) while still in college. There are entire sites devoted to them, for older gentlemen seeking “the girlfriend experience” with a college student, in exchange for paying off ever more exorbitant tuition.

        This has been going on in the US for some time, but the UK has been copying our higher education system. It’s only natural for their students to become prostitutes as well, but at least the UK higher ed system helps them out:

      Ah, orientation, I remember it well. “Here’s the library, here’s the food court, here’s the rec room, here’s where you’ll be taking classes….” I hail from far more prosaic times, indeed. What kind of advice are the UK students getting at orientation nowadays?

The Sex Workers’ Outreach Project (SWOP), Sussex set up shop at Brighton University and Sussex University during their annual September “freshers’ fairs,” offering condoms and sexual health advice to potential sex workers among the students.

     Ok, so I guess I played a bit of a “gotcha” with the title, since clearly this isn’t part of the official orientation materials. Still, there must be some sort of market here, and the university didn’t shut it down. Are they really expecting that many prostitute/students?

“1 in 6 students does sex work or thinks about turning to sex work,” SWOP tweeted. “We can help.”

     Now, I’m not one to cast judgement on people, but perhaps we should ask some questions about an “education” system where 1/6 of the students are considering “sex work” to pay for the system. To clarify, about 60% of students are female, and, realistically, most prostitutes are female, so we’re looking at around a quarter of the females are prostitutes, or are at least considering it.

At Brighton University, the SWOP stall, which featured a colorful “wheel of sexual well-being” for students to play with, stood beside another advertising careers in finance.

     Now, I’m thinking that perhaps a college degree would be helpful in finance, but does anyone else think these two “careers” belong side by side? Honest, you don’t need a college degree to be a prostitute.

     As I finally start to recover from the first round of treatments, a question comes to mind:

       Just how proud should the United States be of shipping this new brand of higher education to the rest of the western world?

Sunday, December 9, 2018

Yet Another Campus Hate Crime Hoax

By Professor Doom

     Today I’m writing during a 6 hour stint in a chemo chair, as this is my status all 5 days (I’m out now, as I write my posts in advance). My apologies if I’m a bit vague at times, but the fatigue hits me harder when I get home.

      A few weeks back, some anti-Trump goober supposedly sent pipe bombs to a bunch of anti-Trump representatives (Clintons, Soros, CNN, etc), covered his van in fresh Pro-Trump stickers and waited to be arrested.

       Because none of the bombs exploded, had no chance of exploding, were basically movie props, he’ll likely receive a reduced sentence (and justifiably so). The goober was in Broward county (the same county that produced that weird school shooting which in turn produced those weird anti-gun kids), a heck of a coincidence. The goober lived in a van, and, obviously, isn’t very bright, and yet somehow he managed to get addresses of people that, frankly aren’t exactly in the yellow pages, managed to get the intercontinental packages to all arrive on the same day (trust me, this is tough), managed to use couriers so he must have flown to New York and other places to set this all up to get simultaneous delivery…and yet the mainstream media dares not consider the bizarre issues here, much less utter the word “hoax.”

      While the mainstream media insists the guy was a Republican and calling him the Magabomber…there are plenty of pieces that just don’t fit that narrative, but the media as always will lie by omission. It’s clear he’s a Democrat before he started sending fake bombs, he only follows liberals on Twitter, for example.

       Anyway, the Left sure does like to hoax itself. It’s an everyday event on campus, the rare thing is it even coming close to the making the news. A recent incident managed it:

      I’m not even going to try to recall the number of times females have sent death threats to themselves…I can’t recall a single time a male has done this, perhaps a gentle reader can identify such a case.

       The hoaxer in this case is a “member of the LGBT” community, as they say, a rich source of hoaxers to be sure (though not by any means the only source).

The latest in a long string of hate-crime hoaxes comes from Ohio, where a woman claimed she received death threats — only for police to discover she sent the threats to herself.

       Most hoaxes are quietly buried because they stay on campus. When the police get involved, it becomes a public matter, and so harder for the campus leaders to squelch.

      The Student Senate devoted time to discussing the notes. An emotional Ayers claimed she was “angry, frustrated and disappointed” after the first threat, and called her parents to tell them about it. Because two of the messages were found in her Student Senate desk, the threats were at first believed to have come from another member of the organization.

      At first, the threats have to be taken seriously, so off it goes to various student groups, and the Diversity Fiefdom is only too happy to get involved…each hoax costs many hundreds of thousands of dollars of wasted time, I assure the gentle reader.

Ayers went on to call the threat sender cowardly, weak, and worthless, according to the Post.

      It sure makes my teeth itch when I see a hoaxer act so brave like this, and my teeth itch in a very special way from seeing it so much. I appear to be the only one to notice, though, as they always get heaps of praise loaded on them for their “courage” in standing up to…themselves?

On Monday, Ayers was arrested by OU police for sending the threats to herself. She was charged with making three false reports to police. A false report of this nature is considered a first-degree misdemeanor. She faces a maximum penalty of six months in jail and a $1,000 fine for each charge.

     And, game over. She went to the police. Oops. Considering the damage she’s caused, the fine is miniscule. In addition to all the expense, you can bet yet another $100,000 assistant Diversity Commissar will be hired as well.

      I’m not saying there are no people out there who really hate LGBT members to the point of violence, I’ve never met one or even heard of one personally, but I can accept they exist. But bottom line, most people just hear of the death threats like the above. Few hear the revelation that it was all yet another hoax, much like with our “MAGAbomber,” as those reports get buried. If we subtracted all the hoaxes from our collective consciousness, we’d realize that world isn’t nearly so filled with violent racism that needs to be PUNCHED as the Left is constantly screaming at us to believe.

Thursday, December 6, 2018

The Result Of Common Core? The Worst ACT Scores In A Decade

By Professor Doom

     I recently realized this is the most time I’ve spent off campus in, well, my adult life, so allow me to wander off campus in my writings as well, at least for a little.

“…Back in 1952 the Army quietly began hiring hundreds of psychologists to find out how 600,000 high school graduates had successfully faked illiteracy. Regna Wood sums up the episode this way:

After the psychologists told the officers that the graduates weren’t faking, Defense Department administrators knew that something terrible had happened in grade school reading instruction. And they knew it had started in the thirties. Why they remained silent, no one knows. The switch back to reading instruction that worked for everyone should have been made then…”

      I’ve written of Common Core before, several times even. It’s been very clear for a very long time that something is very wrong in public school system. While the above hints that an easy solution would be to revert to known, successful methods of teaching children, that option never seems to be on the table.

     The reason for this, I believe, is that if someone can come up with a method of teaching children, any method even incrementally superior to what we’re disastrously doing now, they get the endless rewards of being an Education guru (that, so far, such gurus have all been utter failures doesn’t seem to impact the rewards, however). There’s just no way to take credit for “let’s just use what we’ve known works based on the last few thousand years,” after all.

     So, it doesn’t matter that Common Core ignores science, that it further separates parents from their children (by changing the methods so much that parents can’t help their children learn, a critical part of learning), that it “teaches” in ways that any experienced teacher knows can’t possibly be effective…Common Core it is.

      The gentle reader might be curious how that could be, but part of the reason (beyond simple governmental force) is the effectiveness of Common Core is backed by “studies.” I’ve seen many such studies, and even when they’re blatantly rigged to generate positive results using statistical manipulations up to outright fraud, it doesn’t matter: nobody dares question these things.

      So, the fantastically rigged studies show Common Core is amazing, simply amazing, when it comes to the success of their weird, nearly inhuman, ideas about how to teach children. What happens in the real world when kids are subjected to Common Core?

     So, there it is, then. You can certainly criticize standardized tests, but the fact remains whatever the ACT measures…our students have less of it, thanks to Common Core.
Only 40 percent of high school students met the ACT College Readiness Benchmark in math. That’s down from an ACT high of 46 percent in 2012, and the lowest mark since 2004, the ACT report noted.

     I remind the gentle reader around 70% of high school students go on to college after graduation. When one considers only 46% (more like 40% today, thanks to Common Core) of graduates are ready for college, that means we have a large number of kids flowing on to campus who demonstrably are not ready for campus.
      The reason nobody asks our leaders in higher ed about this obvious discrepancy is similar to why nobody ever challenges those fake studies showing the efficacy of Common Core.
“We should be concerned as a country,” said Matt Larson, immediate past president of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics. “There’s a need to restructure how high-school mathematics teaching and learning is done in the United States.”

     The ACT basically measures two things, math skills and English skills. It’s clear Common Core has failed to help our kids with math, and I must particularly grieve over this. Is Common Core better with English?

The report also noted that high school graduates college readiness in English is also slipping. The report said 60 percent were considered ready, based upon their scores, a drop from 64 percent in 2015. The 2018 level was the lowest since current benchmarks began to be used, ACT said.

      More failure. Not to worry, I suppose, as I’m sure some new method of teaching (something called “Homeland Core,” perhaps) will be invented soon, and there will be plenty of studies showing how great it is.
      But, honest, we really have known since the 50’s how we can easily improve our public education system, and at least one school is getting a clue: