Monday, March 19, 2007

Avalon Developer

Avalon Developer
Florida offers developers two options to comply with the current regulations regarding gopher tortoise impacts: they can obtain a permit for "incidental take" (i.e., accidental killing) of gopher tortoises as a result of development or they can obtain a permit to relocate the tortoises. Many developers choose to pay for the killing and they bury them alive.

Avalon, an example in "new urbanism" is a nearby community. This is a picture of the developer. The developer who chose to bury the tortoises. The article was praising him for being a good citizen.

He is a father of young children, and a successful businessman. I wonder if his kids know that he buried Gopher Tortoises alive!?

I think the permit to "bury a tortoise alive" is around $1,000 per tortoise. I'll bet there are plenty of college students who would be happy to go dig up a tortoise and move it to another location for $1,000. Good money for a college student. Wonder why no one has ever asked?

Good piece by Bill Belleville on the plight of the Manatee

Bill came to our book club and talked about his book,
Losing it All to Sprawl.

Found Year Anniversary of the Iraq War-- We are asking the wrong question, im my humble opinion

Tonight, all of the news pundits are talking about the Iraq War. One side wants us to leave. There are clips showing the war protestors from this weekend's demonstration in Washington. I hear someone saying, "We can win, we are going to take our country back!" Winning to this group is ending the Iraq War. Then there is the other side, "If we leave there will be a blood bath and we will pay a price because the whole area turns into a great conflagration.

Yes, we can leave Iraq. Yes, our troops are stretched to the limit. But here's what I want to know about the war:

1. How do we know when we have won?
2. Can we win this war?

I wouldn't want to US to pull out of Iraq if there is a true shot of winning the war. I want to win this war. I'm not a GW fan by any stretch of the imagination. (Read my blog for proof.) But we have lost over 3,000 lives. We have no idea how many Iraqi's have lost their lives. What will happen if we leave?

I like Murtha's suggestion, redeploy, and go to the borders.
But I don't want there to be a blood bath either.
I want to Iraqi's to stop fighting and start working toward peace.
Is that how we know when we have won? When the Iraqi's stop killing each other? How do we make that happen? Threatening to leave and making them realize that they will spiral down into chaos and genocide, will that convince them that they need to start making better choices. I want to be able to leave, but I want the US to win this regretful war too. I want someone to ask, "What will it take to win the war?" “How will we know when we have won?"

I wish the Democrats would stop talking about "pulling out of Iraq" and start talking about what it will take to “Win This War.” What will it take to make the Iraqi's be responsible for their country so we can go home? That's what we all want! I want to the people in Iraq to be able to live in peace! I want this war to end. What will it take to get them to stop fighting?

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Those Crazy Conservative Political Christian Leaders

Rev. Richard Cizik, policy director for the National Association of Evangelicals, says global warming is human-caused and the God-fearing should take it seriously. Science-based belief? Quelle horreur! Recently, a group of conservative Christian leaders unaffiliated with NAE wrote a letter urging the NAE board to shut Cizik up or fire him.

Muslim Mouring the death of these chidren highlights their inconsistencies

I read Sam Harris’ book, “The End of Faith” which basically says that the fate of the world lies in the hands of the moderate Muslims. I won’t go into why, it’s in the book. But here is an example of where the moderate Muslims are making the same mistakes the radical Christians have made. In the new Christian era of political activism for the right and morality, it’s OK to kill thousands of people in Iraq, it’s OK to put people to death for capital punishment, but it’s not OK for women to have an abortion. Not sure I understand that reasoning.

Here are Muslim people in New York mourning the death of 10 children who died in a fire in the Bronx. There was a massive turn out to mourn their death but at the same time it’s OK for these children or other people’s children to grow up to be suicide bombers? Where’s the consistency in that?

Why isn’t everyone mourning the death of the misguided young people who blowthemselves up in the name of a Allah and Jihad against the West? Why don’t they speak as a group about that and mourn these unfortunate deaths and the deaths of those who are killed in the bombing? Their silence about sucide bombing and their mourning for these children who died in a fire is inconsistent at best.

Scott McCloud's "Did you know"

Here are some interesting facts that Scott McCloud put together that shows the rate of change that is occurring in our world. What does this mean for educators?

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Well here's something you won't read in the news

Lake Forest, IL-- A disturbing picture of weak schools, disengaged parents and unmotivated youth emerges from the nation's first survey of top teachers, those identified by teens featured in Who's Who Among American High School Students as educators "who made a difference in their lives".

Today's Parents: Unwilling, Unable and Unprepared to Help Teens with School

While 79% of the teachers surveyed have been in the classroom for more than ten years, teachers across all levels of experience complain that parents today are:

Less parents are willing or able to spend time with their children (73%).
Less parents are involved with their children's school lives (63%).
Less parents are ethical/moral (69%).
More parents are self-centered (53%).
Parents are less demanding (41%).

"If parents are alienated from their children's lives, how can we expect young people to develop the kind of values that will help them succeed in school and adult life?"

Teachers rank parent apathy second to peer pressure as the prime reason for school violence.

While 45% of teachers say students cheat on tests, and 40% of students admit to it, less than 4% of parents think their children do.

The same is true of homework, which parents have greater opportunities to monitor. Teachers think 65% of their students copy work they do at home, and 66% of students confess to it; yet only 12% of parents think their children copy homework.

Sixty percent of teachers and 41% of students believe teens have drinking problems. Yet only 16% of parents agree. A mere .2% of parents admit that their own child has an alcohol problem.

In fact, alcohol is very common at parties given by students, according to 74% of teachers and 77% of students. Yet only 52% of parents think alcohol is prevalent at student parties. When asked where their children drink alcohol, 32% of parents say it takes place in family homes, while a distressing 73% didn't know or couldn't answer.

Our Moral Universe: What does Sudan and Whales have to do with each other?

The navy sponsors 70 percent of all marine-mammal research in the United States as well as 50 percent of all research world-wide.
There is a "systematic unwillingness to publicly criticize defense-related projects within the U.S. marine-mammal research community” which shows evidence that the Navy’s use of Sonar is harmful to marine life on a massive scale. Because they control the dollars, very little is known about the broader effects of sound on whales. Large amounts of research money being spent to try to fine-tune the effects of sonar on marine life but there is an increase of sonar exploration by oil and gas companies trying to feed the beast, and our need for energy. “Far too little is devoted to ECOUS: Environmental Consequences of Underwater Sound and there is a hush within the Navy and Energy companies to keep any negative findings out of the news even though there is evidence that Low Frequency Sonar is causing massive death among the whale population.

Elsewhere, in KHARTOUM, SUDAN — The Sudanese government is quietly escalating oil exploration inside the Darfur region, a step that has led to protests from rebel leaders in a volatile area where more than 200,000 people have been killed during three years of fighting.

Some political analysts believe that untapped oil reserves might have been an underlying factor in the Darfur conflict all along, explaining why a seemingly barren wasteland of western Sudan would spark such a bitter tug of war between government forces and rebels, eventually drawing the intervention of international players such as the United States, Libya and the United Nations.

Science is being corrupted by the forcing Scientist to rely on dollars from the Navy and from Oil and Gas companies.

These things, genocide of animals and human beings are important factors to consider when we examine
“the moral universe in which we live.”

Thursday, March 08, 2007

U.S. Honeybees Disappearing

Box after box after box are just empty and scientists do not know why. All they know is that they are gone and seeds need to be polinated before they can grow.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Lewis "Scooter" Libby: The Fall Guy

I am dismayed at the intellectual dishonesty of the Right. Chris' guest tonight, David Rivkin with the National Review: “Pardon Libby now because he was convicted by the testimony of the press?” I don’t think Bush and company have learned any lesson. They are still lying and trying to manipulate the media to promote their propaganda through intellectually dishonest talking points. Please don’t let these people get a way with this. At least ask your guests to make reasonable in arguments.

Right on Chris for asking the question:” Where’s the report?” Someone has it. Where is it? Why doesn’t someone ask about the Project for the New American Century (PNAC), the neo-conservative US think tank based in Washington, DC that Lewis “Scooter” Libby was a founding member of? Libby’s group who called for the overthrow of Saddam Hussein in 1998 long before 9/11... The 2000 Rebuilding America's Defenses report by the PNAC refers to the possibility of a "catastrophic and catalyzing event — like a new Pearl Harbor to help America define its goals.

Where’s the report? Keep asking Chris, keep asking!

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Finally an economic professor I can finally understand

Are there any good deals left for farmland?

If you know of any good farmland for sale, please let me know!

Think Tanks for who form public debate

My husband and I were debating which of the Think Tanks were for the war in Iraq. In the process of the discussion, we were trying to remember which of the Think Tanks were Libretarian. So off the the Internet I went in search for that answer. I found this website that shows the political leaning of each of the think tanks and how much they are cited in the news. It is evident from that that the media does not lean too far to that left, but too far to right. If the conservative base bellows against the media because it is too Liberal, remember the follow statistics:

Saturday, March 03, 2007

HBO's Def Poetry: Do we need a draft?

I watched Def Poetry last night. It was fascinating and definitely worth seeing. But as I listened, I wondered if the young people of today understand the challenges that they are going to face in the future. Our nation’s well-being is at stake and though I loved the Def Poetry show and the idea of, the creative and meaningful self expression, I was worried too as I watched. I saw young people sharing their thoughts some were good, others were mostly narcissistic. There were a few that had depth. Yes, racism and discrimination are constant problems and it’s good to speak out against it, but I wondered: what are you doing about it? Want to get even? Get an education. But that would be too what?

My generation had the disadvantage of a draft. It forced us to see a bigger picture. Young people today spend way too much time looking at themselves in the mirror and too little time trying to understand anything except them selves. I hope Def poetry catches on and that it inspires the younger generation to look beyond their own lives and their own limited understanding of how the world works. They are going to see problems that no other generation has had to experience and unfortunately do not appear to be up the challenges that lie ahead. That was reflected in their poetry. Maybe we do need a draft. It would force young people today to be about something bigger than them selves. I'm going to watch again. It's interesting to see what's on their mind...