I'm with you, Doigotta. Hayden asked me this morning what I wanted for Christmas. I wracked (racked?) my brain and couldn't come up with anything I want or need.
I finally decided on a sausage stuffing attachment for my Kitchenaid stand mixer and sheep casings so I can experiment with homemade chicken, turkey and game sausages.
Maybe some fruit trees to plant this spring. Does anyone know where I can get a wild plum---the little red ones. I remember picking them on the fence rows when we lived in Medicine Lodge, KS and the wonderful jam my Mom made.
Not wanting or needing anything is a wonderful place to be. I would like to go to Africa and also a horse trek in Mongolia, but those trips are out of my kid's price range.
I'm a big fan of David Simon, creator of the wire. He's kind of gloom and doomish in this piece at The Raw Story, but his vision has a moral clarity that is sorely lacking in way too many of our leaders.
Simon believes that the reason the 20th century became the American Century was that a tension was created, starting in 1932, between free market capitalism and the social compact we embraced which said "no one is going to be left behind".
Before all you free market zealots have a cow, Simon is not a Marxist. He says (and I agree) that Marx was a much better diagnostician than a clinician. Marx was spot on in describing the disease; it was his cure that was flawed.
"And that notion that capital is the metric, that profit is the metric by which we’re going to measure the health of our society is one of the fundamental mistakes of the last 30 years. I would date it in my country to about 1980 exactly, and it has triumphed."
"The idea that the market will solve such things as environmental concerns, as our racial divides, as our class distinctions, our problems with educating and incorporating one generation of workers into the economy after the other when that economy is changing; the idea that the market is going to heed all of the human concerns and still maximise profit is juvenile. It’s a juvenile notion and it’s still being argued in my country passionately and we’re going down the tubes. And it terrifies me because I’m astonished at how comfortable we are in absolving ourselves of what is basically a moral choice. Are we all in this together or are we all not?"
Unfortunately, the tension between capitalism and a humane social compact no longer exists, or at the very least is hanging on by its finger nails:
"The last job of capitalism – having won all the battles against labour, having acquired the ultimate authority, almost the ultimate moral authority over what’s a good idea or what’s not, or what’s valued and what’s not – the last journey for capital in my country has been to buy the electoral process, the one venue for reform that remained to Americans."
You can read excerpts from Simon's speech here:
Or you can listen to his entire speech at the 2013 Festival of Dangerous Ideas in Sydney, Australia:
You really need to do one of the above.
When you make port, Max, stay away from the Aztec Soup. Unless you like really, really, REALLY hot stuff.
You can buy the madrassa's other bible, "To Train Up a Child", at amazon. Someone at BJ pointed me to this review which made me laugh, even though the subject is so serious and horrifying.
"Wonderful book. So glad somebody is finally brave enough to stand up for the pro-beating-up-babies movement. For too long, those little bald bastards have been walking (or crawling) all over us decent grown folk, and I for one am sick of it. These authors give such good advice it's insane! I could sing the praises of these amazing, God-fearing baby-beaters all day, but I thought I'd take this opportunity to recommend a few other titles sure to be right up the alley of anyone who enjoys this book.
Cooking for Company - Jeffrey Dahmer
Best Christmas Ever: A Couple's Guide to the Holidays - Scott Peterson
Dog Bathing Made Easy - Michael Vick
And last but not least,
All Aboard: A Final Solution for Train Enthusiasts - Adolph Hitler
Happy reading, everybody!"
Wonder Bread Madrassas. That's what mistermix over at BJ called them when he linked to the American Prospect story and Homeschoolers Anonymous web sites.
I don’t know much about homeschooling, and certainly there must be a number of homeschooled kids who aren’t taught this way, but this sounds like a Wonder Bread Madrassa.
Don't you just love the aura surrounding him in that pic? Wonder what it symbolizes in the minds of folks at the NatJor. This stuff is never unplanned.
On the topic of religion, The American Prospect has an interesting article about a segment of home schoolers and the rebellion of some of the children.
I found this site interesting. I had not heard of Generation Joshua before. This whole subset of homeschoolers sounds like a cult. There is no other word for them.
I am not totally opposed to home schooling. My nephew's daughters, ages 13 and 11, are home schooled because they are competitive ice skaters. Getting the ice time and practice they need is not compatible with a public school schedule. They decided they wanted to go to public school a couple of years back, so they tried it. They loved it---were ahead of their peers---but it turned out they loved the skating more. Both of them are the most adorable little girls. They are pretty normal.
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