Ruminations of the Easily Amused for January 21 2014-Kitchen Sink EditionSomervell County Salon-Glen Rose, Rainbow, Nemo, Glass....Texas


Ruminations of the Easily Amused for January 21 2014-Kitchen Sink Edition

21 January 2014 at 10:11:04 AM

Should Texas taxpayers be paying to have creationism and other nonsense taught in public charter schools? If the SBOE has *finally* decided to teach science instead of myth in other public schools, this should extend to charter schools as well. The textbooks used by some Texas charter schools (Responsive Education) is based on a cult.

The Stanford Center for Research on Education Outcomes has published the leading report on the academic effect of major charter operators across the country. The report found that while students who attended Knowledge Is Power Program schools experienced positive academic gains, “Responsive Ed had a significant negative impact on student reading gains and a non-significant effect in math.” (Responsive Ed responded by criticizing the CREDO report, and CREDO issued a response to Responsive Ed’s response.)

Mike Feinberg, a co-founder of the KIPP charter schools, told me that “charter school authorizers should hold Texas charter schools to the highest standards in the realms of academics, financial solvency, and student safety.”

A conservative education reform think tank, the Fordham Institute, suggested that because of low-performing networks like Responsive Ed cited in CREDO’s report, charter authorizers needed to make changes. Fordham called on authorizers to “strengthen … practices” when it came to their responsibility to “renew or not renew the charter school’s contract based on school performance, especially academic performance.”

Neil degrasse Tyson -

Check out the condos being built on top of this NYC building.

President Obama on Religious Freedom Day

In 1786, the Virginia General Assembly affirmed an ideal that has long been central to the American journey. The Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom, penned by Thomas Jefferson, declared religious liberty a natural right and any attempt to subvert it "a departure from the plan of the Holy Author of our religion, who being Lord both of body and mind, yet chose not to propagate it by coercions on either." The Statute inspired religious liberty protections in the First Amendment, which has stood for almost two and a quarter centuries.

Today, America embraces people of all faiths and of no faith. We are Christians and Jews, Muslims and Hindus, Buddhists and Sikhs, atheists and agnostics. Our religious diversity enriches our cultural fabric and reminds us that what binds us as one is not the tenets of our faiths, the colors of our skin, or the origins of our names. What makes us American is our adherence to shared ideals -- freedom, equality, justice, and our right as a people to set our own course.

Can Oklahoma be forced to keep a Satanic statue off public grounds?

Ronald Reagan and the Occultist

Some Bible stories for kids to help the Bible Sociey with its new campaign- Steve Wells.

Riding a dinosaur off into the sunset

It’s not the case that Americans in general are becoming more creationist. According to Pew, the percentage of Americans who say that human beings have evolved is about 60%, and that number hasn’t budged. Rather, what we’re seeing is an ideological purification. Moderate, pro-science Republicans are either quitting the party or being driven out, becoming independents or Democrats. This leaves behind a hard core of religious fundamentalists – especially white evangelicals, now more than ever the backbone of the GOP – who are aggressively, fervently anti-science, the kind of people who pay money to see Ken Ham’s Creation Museum and its Flintstones-esque dioramas that show Adam and Eve frolicking in the Garden of Eden with dinosaurs.

Photo of partially frozen Niagara falls

Well, this answer the question about whether it's the hair that makes some women think Brad Pitt is cute.

Pomfret Town council member gets sworn in with strainer on his head

GOP Rape Advisory Chart

Privacy Activists Running from RSA

At issue is software known as Bsafe, which uses an NSA encryption algorithm to generate random numbers to secure computer privacy. At least two-dozen companies have long used the NSA algorithm through RSA’s software, according to Carr. After a New York Times report based on on documents leaked by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden, a government agency recommended in September that companies stop using the algorithm because of security flaws. RSA then advised customers to switch to other encryption formulas created for the Bsafe software. But Reuters soon reported NSA had previously paid RSA to make the NSA’s insecure algorithm Bsafe’s default option, giving the spy agency backdoor access.

“The companies have to change from the default Bsafe [algorithm],” Carr said. “I don’t recommend any of my other companies spend a penny on [RSA].”

Do you have teepee in your tree? Don't use fire to remove it.

Rick Perry calls out Obamacare but what about Texas own appalling healthcare statistics?

Typical of our governor, hyperbole, instead of facts, rules the roost. Gov. Perry says, “consider the nearly 6 million Americans estimated to have already lost their insurance thanks to Obamacare.” It turns out that fewer than 10,000 people are expected to lose insurance without an immediate and affordable replacement. The governor fails to mention even these folks have a choice of getting a better policy instead of paying for worthless insurance.

Perry is a shadow of the confident person he was  four years ago. I predict he will be completely off our radar by the end of 2014. I hope he enjoys his retirement at the 10-acre ranch in Round Top.

Jay Trainor, Georgetown

Azle residents going to Austin to talk about all the earthquakes

Since October, there have been more than 20 small earthquakes in the area, and "people are afraid," said Lynda Stokes, mayor of Reno.


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