Knox County School Rezoning

This one will stir the pot. There is an uproar going on right now over the rezoning of schools in Knox County to accomodate the new Hardin Valley High School. 3,400 students from Farragut, West, Bearden, Karns, Gibbs, Austin-East, Central, Carter, Fulton, Halls, and Powell are going to be affected.

Let me get this straight…

You had no problem paying for failing public schools before you had children attending them. You will have no problem continuing to pay for these failing schools long after your child has graduated. You have no problem allowing the state/county to decide when your children will go to a failing school. You have no problem allowing the state to decide on the failing curriculum. You have no problem allowing the state to lump your child (an individual) into this failing curriculum that is geared towards the masses. You have no problem with the state using funds (tax money) to support athletic programs instead of actual education. You have no problem with teachers’ unions and tenure which potentially allow incompetent and lazy teachers to continue “educating” your children. You have no problem with teachers “teaching to the test” to achieve high scores on state mandated standardized tests for the purpose of getting a raise instead of teaching your child to reason and think for themselves.

But you do have a problem with the state deciding which of these failing schools your child must attend?

Isn’t lack of choice and control an expected part of socialism? Was the fact that public schools, social security, etc are socialist institutions conveniently left out of the failing public education most of us received?

Sounds to me like we are getting precisely what we deserve for turning so much control over to the state in the first place.

**UPDATE**

I stand corrected.  There are very important angles of this story I haven’t considered.  Luckily, the News Sentinel is on the job.

Concensus versus Truth–Global Warming, Babe Ruth, and Rickey Henderson

The other day, a friend sent me an article from the KNS  about recent temperatures in East Tennessee, presumably trying to convince me that global warming is real and that the temperatures and phenomena in this area for the past 20 years prove it.  All of this stemmed from a conversation we had a few days before about global warming, whether or not humans are causing it, and who (individuals or governments) should do something about it.  Disclaimer:  I feel it necessary to state at this point that this is not a post on global warming.

The guy who sent this article is one of the smatest people I know–easily in the top five amongst my friends, although that may not mean much :), when it comes to raw intellectual power.  He is well educated in the sciences, with an engineering degree from a university who’s program is respected nationally.  I think it is safe to assume that the scientific method is still taught and practiced there and was part of his training.

My surprise isn’t that he believes in global warming.  I am more intrigued that he is willing to argue the causes, which he believes to be humans, based on scientific concensus while completely dismissing facts proven by the scientific method.  He doesn’t dismiss all of the facts mind you, just the ones that don’t support his opinion.

Okay…no more global warming.  Let’s shift gears and talk about baseball and how these topics are related. Continue reading “Concensus versus Truth–Global Warming, Babe Ruth, and Rickey Henderson”

Free Market at Work in the Blogosphere

There is quite a soap opera going on at Just Another Pretty Farce regarding Mrs. Coble’s issues with JL Kirk & Associates.

Here’s a quick synopsis:

  • Mr. and Mrs. Coble felt ripped off by an employment agency, and she blogged about it.
  • JL Kirk & Associates got mad about that, and one of their employees posted some comments on to her post on Mrs. Coble’s site (that was stupid). These comments were rather nasty, especially coming from a company trying to defend itself publicly.
  • Mrs. C. has now received a letter threatening a lawsuit if she does not remove her post(s) about JL Kirk & Associates as well as all associated comments. I suspect this has little to do with their desire to eliminate her original post, and more to do with the venemous comment one of their own employees left there.
  • Countless people will now read the account of what happened, most of whom probably would not have read the account had she not been sent a threatening letter and had it picked up by the blogosphere.
  • Many more people will view JL Kirk & Associates as scam artist jerks than ever would have before. Whether they are scam artists and/or jerks is beside the point. They’ve gone a long way through their comments on Mrs. C.’s blog and by sending a letter to give that impression.

Their own actions will hurt them significantly more than Mrs. Coble’s ever could have. You have to love the free market.

Here are some highlights of the comments left by a JL Kirk & Associates employee in her original post:

And by the way, in Mrs. Cobles’ [sic] case, we would recommend (free of charge) to further her writing “career” she learn to spell “wizardry” and polish her grammar and punctuation skills.

Well, couldn’t we all use a little help there now and then? But free of charge? That’s going above and beyond helpful!

…Mr. Coble has had difficulty with sustained upward mobility.

Is the writer trying to stoke some sort of class warfare fire?

That comment is simply stupid.

This could be broadly applied to most comments on most blogs, but usually isn’t what one says when trying to win over an audience. I seriously doubt you’ll hear that in a presidential debate, although it wouldn’t be untrue.

Mrs. Coble’s spiteful meanness precluded her from asking me about it.

Mean and spiteful? I like Mrs. Coble!

Do a Google search on Katherine Coble! She is an angry, opinionated basher of many things

I don’t need to do a Google search. This statement sold me. From this day forward, I vow to be a reader of Katherine Coble’s blog and to never do business with JL Kirk & Associates out of fear that they will send certified junk mail to my house and an unprecedented amount of traffic to my blog.

On second thought…

Poker Police Strike Again

Reason tells us about raids in Georgia, North Carolina, and some especially dangerous card sharks in Dallas.

I don’t get to play as much poker as I would like, but luckily, I’ve never been involved in a home game that was broken up by a S.W.A.T. team.  I’d like to believe that this is mainly due to the fact that our state and local law enforcement realize it would be a stupid waste of time.

However, I fear that home poker games will be next on their list, as soon as they can rid us of the social scurge that is cock fighting.

More Important Legislation in Tennessee

This one will require mandatory HIV testing of PIMPs (Prostitution Industry Management Professionals).

This has taken things too far.  It’s about time someone stand up and push for deregulation of PIMPing.  It has gotten to the point that PIMPs are so busy filling out gov’ment paperwork and making sure they are abiding by all of the codes that they hardly have time time to concentrate on their core business–smackin’ ‘ho’s and foldin’ bank.

Free market enthusiasts unite!  If the state continues to create more and  more bureaucracy for sex industry management professionals Continue reading “More Important Legislation in Tennessee”

Apologies to the Thompsons

Looks like I inadvertantly angered a couple of Fred’s relatives who read Bob Krumm. Sorry about that…didn’t mean to issue fuedin’ words.

If you are a fan of my biting humor (I did it mostly for you, Shizzle Van Dizzle) and sarcasm you may find it worth a read. If you are not, that means it has probably been directed at you in the last few days and you are still pouting about it. When you get over the fact that I hurt your feelings and realize that everything I say is mostly joking with a little bit of truth, go back and read it.

Seriously, Bob maintains a really informative site with frequent updates, good regional information, and some great original thought. Because his site is ad-free (unlike mine), you know he’s doing it just because he loves it. I read it every day. Check him out.

Do Smoking Bans Cause DUIs?

From the KNS:

”As the U.S. Surgeon General said last year — the debate is over, the science is clear. Secondhand smoke is a serious health hazard that causes premature death and disease in children and nonsmoking adults,” said Conte.

That statement is certainly true, and I’m not contesting it.  However, there is one small detail to this issue that proponents of smoking bans overlook–the freedom to choose. Continue reading “Do Smoking Bans Cause DUIs?”

More Important Legislation–Wheelies

Michael Silence reports on the new “wheelie ban” in Tennessee. This piece of worthless legislation was the gift of the generous Vince Dean. There was, however some opposition.

House Judiciary Chairman Rob Briley questioned the need for the legislation, since police can already pull over motorcyclists for wheelies.

“We ought to leave well enough alone with the current law,“ said Briley, D-Nashville.
Dean amended his bill to exclude inadvertent wheelies, and those performed in parades by adults riding slower than 30 mph.

So let me get this straight. Continue reading “More Important Legislation–Wheelies”

Dollars – The American Language

One of the big issues surrounding the illegal immigration debate is language. Here in Tennessee, legislation has been sponsored to limit the languages of state documents to English only, and there have been other issues involving foreign language books in public school libraries. It seems to be old reliable for anti-immigration people–attack the fact that immigrants can’t/don’t/won’t speak English.

Continue reading “Dollars – The American Language”

Pacman Gore

Bob Krumm on the Tennessean’s scoop reporting tactics.

I don’t understand criticism of the Tennessean for filling its pages with stories about an ignorant thug who happens to play a sport.

Sure, on the surface it seems like a ridiculous story for a major newspaper to follow, but not when you consider that they held the Gore story (a real story) without running it.

It’s what those in the big newspaper business call a “news offset”.