Tuesday December 10, 2013
Archive - 2013
I hear the case made against teaching cursive writing, and it tells me this: My third-grade teacher, Miss Coleman, wasted my instructional time.
And heretofore I thought her to be a wonderful lady.
School reformers are saying cursive instruction is pointless because 21st century technology has made it irrelevant.
It goes without saying that the rollout of Obamacare was an epic disaster. But what kind of disaster was it? Was it a failure of management, messing up the initial implementation of a fundamentally sound policy? Or was it a demonstration that the Affordable Care Act is inherently unworkable?
Before President Barack Obama administered his fix to the Affordable Care Act last week and even before it was clear that he was leaning that way, Bill Clinton piped up, opining that Obama should honor his claim that Americans with insurance they liked could keep it. This advice wasn't exactly solicited. And inasmuch as it gave detractors of Obama and Obamacare a fresh cudgel, it wasn't terribly helpful, either.
Better bring some identification - and not just any identification, official though it may be - if you plan to vote in Republican-controlled states. However, if you contribute tens of millions of dollars to sway an election on Republicans' behalf, the party will fight to keep your identity a secret.
Senate Democrats made an understandable mistake in dramatically curtailing the use of the filibuster.
It's understandable for the obvious reason: Republicans all but forced the Democrats' hand with unprecedented obstruction of nominees.
Segued into a 10-second afterthought, smothered by 60-second Christmas commercials, is the media acknowledgement of Thanksgiving, which nudges us into a realization of all we are thankful for.
But the usual litany, even with the omnipresent pictures of the less fortunate being fed by the more fortunate, doesn’t list well this year. Our thanks seem to be at best half-hearted or at least insensitive and shallow.
The old axiom, be careful what you wish for because you may get it, is back in play here with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid's successful change in Senate rules dealing with that old albatross, the filibuster.
"Cocaine Congressman" Trey Radel, as headline writers have rebranded him, voted to allow states to drug test all food stamp recipients. Congress, it turns out, should have drug-tested him.
The 37-year-old former TV reporter and radio show host arrived in Washington this year from his southwest Florida district with the same broom-wielding, housecleaning fervor as his fellow tea party-backed Republicans.
Even sitting in an MIT classroom made me feel smarter.
But I was still struggling with the difference between meiosis and parthenogenesis.
Dr. David Page, the zippy evolutionary biologist teaching a class Wednesday called "Are Males Really Necessary?," had helpfully laid out some props to illustrate gene swapping - bananas, apples and heads of lettuce arranged on a table covered with a flowery white tablecloth.