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  #1  
Old 08-10-2010, 07:50 PM
Bloggingheads Bloggingheads is offline
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Default Stop and Smell the Aqua Buddha (Dana Goldstein & Katherine Mangu-Ward)

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  #2  
Old 08-10-2010, 09:30 PM
DenvilleSteve DenvilleSteve is offline
 
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Default I suspect journolist is still in action

that big lib chat group in which what was discussed was how to best smear the republican political leaders has got to still be in operation. Where else do you come up with a lame attack line intended to split Rand Paul from his Christian Conservative base? It is not uncommon for a believing Christian to have a sordid past. It is their rejection of that past that brought them to Jesus. Hearing that Rand Paul turned his back on God in his youth and now accepts Jesus as the one true savior, that is music to the Christian Right's ears.
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  #3  
Old 08-10-2010, 09:56 PM
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Default Re: Stop and Smell the Aqua Buddha (Dana Goldstein & Katherine Mangu-Ward)

We are still waiting for GQ to do that investigative article on Barack's college days. Most of what we know comes only from him or his handlers and sounds alot like BS and lacks not only people to back it up but also transcripts.

obamapot.jpg
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  #4  
Old 08-10-2010, 10:53 PM
DenvilleSteve DenvilleSteve is offline
 
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Default Re: Stop and Smell the Aqua Buddha (Dana Goldstein & Katherine Mangu-Ward)

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Originally Posted by Whatfur View Post
We are still waiting for GQ to do that investigative article on Barack's college days. Most of what we know comes only from him or his handlers and sounds alot like BS and lacks not only people to back it up but also transcripts.

Attachment 147
It would be useful to hear how much if any Obama has changed his views since his college days. Obama seems to be very good at mastering the facts that support his positions. And tactically he is very effective at advancing his agenda. But he does not seem to question himself at all. The smug is strong within him. And he has zero understanding of republican people. As sharply divided as we are in this country, you can make a strong case that Obama is going to destroy the country by governing so completely from the democrat side.
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  #5  
Old 08-10-2010, 11:54 PM
chamblee54 chamblee54 is offline
 
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Default Re: Stop and Smell the Aqua Buddha (Dana Goldstein & Katherine Mangu-Ward)



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  #6  
Old 08-11-2010, 01:22 AM
Wonderment Wonderment is offline
 
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Default Skool

This dialogue raised interesting questions about the challenges educators and parents face.

I wish there were some way to get beyond the usual noise about teachers unions. The system is broken in lots of ways, but it's mostly broken because education is underfunded (let's have wars instead!), especially inner city education.

I am most hopeful about outside-the-schoolbox programs. It's true that the school day is not long enough, but the school system may be incapable of addressing the problem. After-school programs, whether faith-based or secular, do a lot of good. It still requires plenty of grant money from the Gov. and the private sectors, but at least the $$$ can be delivered outside the standard bureaucracy.
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  #7  
Old 08-11-2010, 11:53 AM
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Default Re: Skool

I favor the possibility of longer school days, but they would have to have well thought out activities in order to avoid "more of the same". Perhaps abolishing homework by allowing kids to work independently on their homework for an hour could be part of it. It would certainly help me avoid some of the most agonizing instances of parenting. Providing daily exercise and nutrition education. For example they could have kids experiment creating palatable ways of eating fruits and vegetables. There could be all kinds of enrichment activities such as increasing their interest in Art and researching topics of their choice. The problem, obviously is funding. It seems that a few decisions have to be made as to how important our children's education is in our list of priorities.

And certainly, I would ask my kids whether they would like to have longer school days. They are kids!
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  #8  
Old 08-11-2010, 12:58 PM
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Default Re: Skool

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wonderment View Post
This dialogue raised interesting questions about the challenges educators and parents face.

I wish there were some way to get beyond the usual noise about teachers unions. The system is broken in lots of ways, but it's mostly broken because education is underfunded (let's have wars instead!), especially inner city education.

I am most hopeful about outside-the-schoolbox programs. It's true that the school day is not long enough, but the school system may be incapable of addressing the problem. After-school programs, whether faith-based or secular, do a lot of good. It still requires plenty of grant money from the Gov. and the private sectors, but at least the $$$ can be delivered outside the standard bureaucracy.
It has been proven time and time again that money is not the issue and of course the current administration has no idea what to do with it when they spend it anyway.
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  #9  
Old 08-14-2010, 11:58 PM
eeeeeeeli eeeeeeeli is offline
 
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Default Re: Skool

It has been proven time and time again that money is not the issue

Sorry, but this is just kind of a ridiculous thing to say. There are plenty of evidence-based, targeted programs that have been proven to work. As a teacher of generally low SES children, and working with their families, I could give you a lengthy list of ways in which more money would have real social results. There is a problem in getting the right programs funded, but the bottom line is that people don't want to pay for it.

The greatest example of a program that is proving you wrong daily is the Harlem Children's Zone, which spends on average of 3x the money per student and so far almost every child goes to college. I suggest you check out their site for an idea on how more money can equal real results.

Lastly, it's worth saying that the modern public school is essentially expected to provide every child with an equal education. You simply can't do this without taking the community and family into account. Changing that equation will be expensive, but it is a long-term investment that pays off. Not only that, but as a civil rights issue, I think every child getting a fair shot at life can be well argued from the constitution.
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  #10  
Old 08-15-2010, 10:26 AM
Whatfur
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Default Re: Skool

Quote:
Originally Posted by eeeeeeeli View Post
It has been proven time and time again that money is not the issue

Sorry, but this is just kind of a ridiculous thing to say. There are plenty of evidence-based, targeted programs that have been proven to work. As a teacher of generally low SES children, and working with their families, I could give you a lengthy list of ways in which more money would have real social results. There is a problem in getting the right programs funded, but the bottom line is that people don't want to pay for it.

The greatest example of a program that is proving you wrong daily is the Harlem Children's Zone, which spends on average of 3x the money per student and so far almost every child goes to college. I suggest you check out their site for an idea on how more money can equal real results.

Lastly, it's worth saying that the modern public school is essentially expected to provide every child with an equal education. You simply can't do this without taking the community and family into account. Changing that equation will be expensive, but it is a long-term investment that pays off. Not only that, but as a civil rights issue, I think every child getting a fair shot at life can be well argued from the constitution.
The examples you site are rather marginal. Special education is one of the biggest reasons education spending is off the charts. If it takes the Harlem Children Zone 3x the money per student then I would suggest it be abolished. I also doubt your facts. The much publicized philanthropic babysitting of a whole class of youngsters proved an utter failure recently...maybe you can provide some documentation.

Concerning my "ridiculous" statement...

Spending doubled, test scores stagnant.

Money not the answer.

The Washington Post.

Cato Institute.

The Heritage Foundation


Concerning your comment about the Constitution welll...Do you walk to school or carry your lunch?
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  #11  
Old 08-15-2010, 01:18 PM
eeeeeeeli eeeeeeeli is offline
 
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Default Re: Skool

Quote:
Originally Posted by Whatfur View Post
The examples you site are rather marginal. Special education is one of the biggest reasons education spending is off the charts. If it takes the Harlem Children Zone 3x the money per student then I would suggest it be abolished. I also doubt your facts. The much publicized philanthropic babysitting of a whole class of youngsters proved an utter failure recently...maybe you can provide some documentation.

Concerning my "ridiculous" statement...

Spending doubled, test scores stagnant.

Money not the answer.

The Washington Post.

Cato Institute.

The Heritage Foundation


Concerning your comment about the Constitution welll...Do you walk to school or carry your lunch?
Wait a second, you're telling me you wouldn't want to spend 3x as much on poor schools if it meant that every kid was graduating college-ready? You can argue whether this actually works, but assuming it does that is an unequivocal bargain.

Well, if you doubt my facts simply do a little research on the HCZ. They've got a lot of material on their site that explains exactly what they are doing, and what their success rate is. The programs they implement are not being done in most districts, which, as you say, have been spending more and more money but with little to show for it.

The reason for this is not that more money magically produces results, but that targeted spending can. The stories you've cited are generally about entire states and districts increasing their overall budget. This means that poor schools aren't really getting much more than wealthier ones.

Let me back up a little. Have you heard of human and social capital theory? Human Capital is all the stuff you've learned that facilitate agency. So everything from emotional and cognitive development to concrete knowledge, cultural facility, etc. Social Capital is everything available to an individual outside his body: parents, family, friends, neighborhood, wealth, school, etc.

Kids develop with vastly different levels of these forms of capital. Such that, by kindergarten, lower socioeconomic children tend to have much lower levels of both. This directly translates into huge disadvantages over their lifetimes, specifically in relation to academic K-12 performance.

What schools can do is increase many of these forms of capital in a student, thereby facilitating his own agency. HCZ does this very successfully because they look at all forms of capital. They target not only the child's human capital but also his social capital, by working with the community to increase their ability to provide their children what they need.

Here are some articles that explore these issues:

http://www-personal.umich.edu/~sbneuman/journal.html

and the Harlem Children's Zone

Lastly, my question to you is this: Is there a moral imperative to intervening in poor kid's lives when their family is not offering them what they need to succeed? And if so, what is the best way of doing this? And any evidence you can provide for it working would be appreciated.
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  #12  
Old 08-15-2010, 02:16 PM
Whatfur
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Default Re: Skool

Quote:
Originally Posted by eeeeeeeli View Post
Wait a second, you're telling me you wouldn't want to spend 3x as much on poor schools if it meant that every kid was graduating college-ready? You can argue whether this actually works, but assuming it does that is an unequivocal bargain.
No, I would not want to spend 3x as much when it has been well documented that money is not the answer. You say in your job you can come up with a bunch of things to make your job easier. Guess what, if I had wall full of monitors and a Cray super computer I might be able to do my job a little better also. You came here and said my statement about more money being the answer being proven wrong many times and you said it was ridiculous and I came up with a small number of the total number of studies that back up my statement.

Quote:
Originally Posted by eeeeeeeli View Post
Well, if you doubt my facts simply do a little research on the HCZ. They've got a lot of material on their site that explains exactly what they are doing, and what their success rate is. The programs they implement are not being done in most districts, which, as you say, have been spending more and more money but with little to show for it.
I will take a look, but I was hoping you might jump out and tell us of the amazing things 3x the spending is being used for.

Quote:
Originally Posted by eeeeeeeli View Post
The reason for this is not that more money magically produces results, but that targeted spending can. The stories you've cited are generally about entire states and districts increasing their overall budget. This means that poor schools aren't really getting much more than wealthier ones.
Good...lets target the spending and get rid of the BS and we will not have to spend 3x.

Quote:
Originally Posted by eeeeeeeli View Post
Let me back up a little. Have you heard of human and social capital theory? Human Capital is all the stuff you've learned that facilitate agency. So everything from emotional and cognitive development to concrete knowledge, cultural facility, etc. Social Capital is everything available to an individual outside his body: parents, family, friends, neighborhood, wealth, school, etc.

Kids develop with vastly different levels of these forms of capital. Such that, by kindergarten, lower socioeconomic children tend to have much lower levels of both. This directly translates into huge disadvantages over their lifetimes, specifically in relation to academic K-12 performance.

What schools can do is increase many of these forms of capital in a student, thereby facilitating his own agency. HCZ does this very successfully because they look at all forms of capital. They target not only the child's human capital but also his social capital, by working with the community to increase their ability to provide their children what they need.
Now we are talking ridiculous. Look up ...you will see a pie and pigs flying. You are not really describing anything that this country's Constitution suggests but something more from Santa Claus meets the Martians.

Quote:
Originally Posted by eeeeeeeli View Post
Here are some articles that explore these issues:

http://www-personal.umich.edu/~sbneuman/journal.html

and the Harlem Children's Zone

Lastly, my question to you is this: Is there a moral imperative to intervening in poor kid's lives when their family is not offering them what they need to succeed? And if so, what is the best way of doing this? And any evidence you can provide for it working would be appreciated.
No.

Last edited by Whatfur; 08-15-2010 at 02:26 PM..
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Old 08-15-2010, 04:17 PM
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Default Re: Skool

Quote:
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I will take a look, but I was hoping you might jump out and tell us of the amazing things 3x the spending is being used for.
Of course the direct link you provided some warm fuzzys but ...
It ain't all coming up daisies.

All its made out to be?

Brookings:

"President Obama was a community organizer before he was a politician, so it is natural that his instincts are to invest in community programs. But President Obama has repeatedly called for doing what works. Doing what works depends on evidence not instincts. There is no evidence that the HCZ influences student achievement through neighborhood investments. There is considerable evidence that schools can have dramatic effects on the academic skills of disadvantaged children without their providing broader social services. Improving neighborhoods and communities is a desirable goal in its own right, but let’s not confuse it with education reform. "

Last edited by Whatfur; 08-15-2010 at 07:44 PM..
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  #14  
Old 08-15-2010, 10:20 PM
eeeeeeeli eeeeeeeli is offline
 
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Default Re: Skool

Originally Posted by eeeeeeeli View Post
Wait a second, you're telling me you wouldn't want to spend 3x as much on poor schools if it meant that every kid was graduating college-ready? You can argue whether this actually works, but assuming it does that is an unequivocal bargain.
No, I would not want to spend 3x as much when it has been well documented that money is not the answer.

That wasn't my question. If you had read my entire sentence, I was specifically asking whether you would approve of spending the money if it did work.

But since you simply answered "no" to my last question, and provided no answer to what your alternative would be, I can only assume you don't actually care.

I will take a look, but I was hoping you might jump out and tell us of the amazing things 3x the spending is being used for.
This statement, and your generally snarky attitude makes me question how serious you were any way. I do apologize for saying what you wrote was ridiculous. I should have picked a more neutral word.

Now we are talking ridiculous. Look up ...you will see a pie and pigs flying. You are not really describing anything that this country's Constitution suggests but something more from Santa Claus meets the Martians.
Is that really all you have in response to my ideas? Again, I don't think you're being very serious. You basically posted a bunch of links to other peoples stories, which themselves were conglomerations of studies which offered little background or context from which to go on. And did you bother looking at any of the links I provided, most of which were actual studies that back up what I'm trying to say: that there a re specific reasons why poor kids aren't succeeding in school and that only by addressing them specifically can we hope to help them.

Which returns me to my last question again, do you think its possible to help poor kids, and if we can, should we. Since you didn't elaborate, I can only assume your answer was no to both. In which case, again, you're not being serious. You don't want to try and find a way to help them. If this is true, I don't think there's anything anyone can say to convince you. We simply have profoundly different attitudes towards our fellow man.
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Old 08-16-2010, 12:27 AM
Whatfur
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Default Re: Skool

eli,

Lets me start by reminding you that you were the first to respond to me and you did so by calling something I posted ridiculous followed by a misrepresented defense of something I never argued against. (i.e. "There are plenty of evidence-based, targeted programs that have been proven to work. ") I only prod you again with this information to let you realize where where the snark starts and although the supposed statement that had you feeling snark from me WAS a bit facetious, it was truthful...I was hoping you would provide some free information.

BTW, I read and answered your first question. You probably wanted a period and not the comma. The answer was "No". I am not against taking a look at those ideas that work, but don't feel one should have to pay and I am not willing to pay 3x the current for it. Its not because I don't "care" or don't want kids graduating to be college-ready, however. That's an inane notion, but a commonly used tactic. Also, you deciding that the 3x concept must be an "unequivocal bargain" does not make it so.

Now lets see...you go from there to bashing my use of links as not being pertinent of something. My first set was purely and plurally there to back up my original statement. (Which they did) The last 2 both offered insights into HCZ (Which was the paragraph of yours that these links were in regard to) and only the first utilized any "conglomeration". I think you embellish a bit.

In any case the Brookings study is rather comprehensive...if not the most comprehensive done on HCZ and if you read it you would find it saying some positive things. It just does not back you up on everything you suggest, however.

Yes, I looked at the links you provided, one to HCZ itself and of course they are in the business of self-promotion so I am not sure that is where I am going to find unbiased information. Your first (Susan B. Neuman) more closely resembles what you accuse ME of ("...conglomerations of studies which offered little background or context from which to go on.") than anything I provided. It does look to have some interesting articles.

We seem to have a problem with confluence...or lack thereof. I came here discussing money, you want to turn it into something else like painting anyone who is not in full agreement with your view of the world as not wanting to help poor kids nor his fellow man. I understand you beat your husband. Is that true? ;o) Its ok if our rivers run parallel as their sources are far apart.

I do apologize though...I assumed that SES referred to "Special Education" and not Supplemental Educator. Is that like a teachers aid? Sorry my kids are out of college now (both engineers (one electrical and one mechanical) who put themselves through school) and I am not up on the current acronyms. I think they still call them PARAs here (not sure what that stands for either). Feel free to differentiate...Which does remind me of one of my favorite newspaper headlines. When my town was trying to pass some multi-million dollar referendum so they could build some palacial new school the local paper carried the headline: "Multiple Teachers to be cut if Referendum Fails to Pass". If you actually read the article you would have found that it was 5 and of that 3 were PARAs, 1 was a Swedish teacher (seriously), and the third was an art teacher (not the only art teacher).
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Old 08-16-2010, 03:20 PM
Whatfur
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Default Re: Skool

Quote:
Originally Posted by eeeeeeeli View Post
...Which returns me to my last question again, do you think its possible to help poor kids, and if we can, should we. Since you didn't elaborate, I can only assume your answer was no to both. In which case, again, you're not being serious. You don't want to try and find a way to help them. If this is true, I don't think there's anything anyone can say to convince you. We simply have profoundly different attitudes towards our fellow man.
Electing a Republican majority in Nov. might be a start.

What does the Obama administration have against poor people?
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  #17  
Old 09-15-2010, 10:49 PM
Whatfur
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Default Re: Skool

Money, money, money....money.
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  #18  
Old 08-11-2010, 09:39 PM
prohacvice prohacvice is offline
 
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Default Re: Skool, Mangu a libertarian?

Is Mangu really a libertarian? Has Reason sold out in its quest for respectability?

I cant imagine a libertarian not being horrified at the suggestion that kids need to spend more time at government schools so more social engineering can be tried on them. Mangu's objection was disproportionately weak considering what a truly horrific idea it was.
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Old 08-14-2010, 11:59 PM
eeeeeeeli eeeeeeeli is offline
 
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Default Re: Skool, Mangu a libertarian?

Yes, I agree. Libertarians are way more evil.
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Old 08-11-2010, 02:01 AM
paulkdeuter paulkdeuter is offline
 
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Default Re: Stop and Smell the Aqua Buddha (Dana Goldstein & Katherine Mangu-Ward)

I wish you would visit a school and watch what the kids eat. Just because you put an apple on their tray, it doesn't mean that they will eat it. There is a tremendous amount of wasted food in the school system. Imo, this is an indication that most of the kids really aren't that hungry. As a parent, I am all too familiar with children saving their appetite until they come across a meal and/or snack that is tasty.

Instead of expanding the school food system, it should be abandoned entirely. That would free up needed money and allow teachers and administrators to focus on the core mission: teaching and learning.

The school food system is based on the premise that kids are coming to school hungry. At the same time, we are worrying about obesity. Which is it? I don't think the school system can be effective at micro-managing the diets of individual children. I think it is time to give this responsibility back to parents where it belongs.
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Old 08-11-2010, 02:08 AM
TwinSwords TwinSwords is offline
 
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Default Re: Stop and Smell the Aqua Buddha (Dana Goldstein & Katherine Mangu-Ward)

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The school food system is based on the premise that kids are coming to school hungry. At the same time, we are worrying about obesity. Which is it?
Since there is only one child in America's schools, it has to be one or the other.

Oh, wait.

Are you familiar at all with the dramatic and immediate positive effects on public health of Truman's National School Lunch Program?

Throwing away some unwanted apples is a small price to pay for a stronger, healthier, smarter, more productive, and ultimately happier population. There are few things government can do that will have the broad positive impact of school lunch.

People either want to live in a better society or they don't.
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Old 08-11-2010, 12:25 PM
badhatharry badhatharry is offline
 
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Default Re: Stop and Smell the Aqua Buddha (Dana Goldstein & Katherine Mangu-Ward)

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Originally Posted by TwinSwords View Post
Throwing away some unwanted apples is a small price to pay for a stronger, healthier, smarter, more productive, and ultimately happier population. There are few things government can do that will have the broad positive impact of school lunch.

People either want to live in a better society or they don't.
Oh yes!

It is up to the government to provide us with healthier, smarter, more productive and happier children. Such a lot for a government to do! We obviously need more government workers to achieve this miracle!
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  #23  
Old 08-11-2010, 12:28 PM
AemJeff AemJeff is offline
 
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Default Re: Stop and Smell the Aqua Buddha (Dana Goldstein & Katherine Mangu-Ward)

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Oh yes!

It is up to the government to provide us with healthier, smarter more productive and happier children. Such a lot for a government to do!
Can you name another means of providing education for children that's ever shown a fraction of the success of the current system? What are you advocating?
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Old 08-12-2010, 11:40 AM
badhatharry badhatharry is offline
 
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Default Re: Stop and Smell the Aqua Buddha (Dana Goldstein & Katherine Mangu-Ward)

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Can you name another means of providing education for children that's ever shown a fraction of the success of the current system? What are you advocating?
He was talking about school lunch, not public education. But more broadly, I don't think the federal government is responsible for a stronger, healthier, smarter, more productive, and ultimately happier population. That's what parents are for.
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Old 08-12-2010, 11:49 AM
AemJeff AemJeff is offline
 
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Default Re: Stop and Smell the Aqua Buddha (Dana Goldstein & Katherine Mangu-Ward)

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Originally Posted by badhatharry View Post
He was talking about school lunch, not public education. But more broadly, I don't think the federal government is responsible for a stronger, healthier, smarter, more productive, and ultimately happier population. That's what parents are for.
Parents need an environment that will allow for that, and they need the resources for tasks like providing an education (and keeping up to some standard.) There are definitely arguments worth having at the margins; such as the role of the school in providing lunches. But I'd have a hard time taking an argument that ensuring kids get proper nutrition (among other things) doesn't have an implicit role for the State at least some of the time.
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  #26  
Old 08-15-2010, 12:02 AM
eeeeeeeli eeeeeeeli is offline
 
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Default Re: Stop and Smell the Aqua Buddha (Dana Goldstein & Katherine Mangu-Ward)

And if parents don't provide it, do we just say "screw the kids"? I mean, that is what you are saying. You think parents are going to do a better job if the school doesn't feed their children? I know from personal experience that this isn't the case.

But I think the general theme of your argument is a good example of why we won't be ending poverty in America any time soon.
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Old 08-11-2010, 11:09 AM
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Default Re: Stop and Smell the Aqua Buddha (Dana Goldstein & Katherine Mangu-Ward)

Progressives make no sense. The solution to having too many fat kids is longer school days? How does that compute? It's not like school is an active activity. Even if it does help it seems like a very indirect way of solving the problem. Why not be more direct and just directly incentivize the kids/parents. A fat tax or a skinny subsidy either one seems like it would have a better chance of providing results. Ethically it seems no more abominable than compelled education.

Which brings me to my real rant. What about the kids? What if they don’t want longer school days? I’m 31 now but I don’t remember ever wishing that school was longer when I was a kid. Consider that time is finite and that every minute I spent in school I could have been doing something else. How many awesome things did I miss out on so that when I was 18 I would be qualified to work a factory job? Compelled education is a monstrous thing we do to our children and should be abolished.
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Old 08-11-2010, 12:57 PM
violetcrown violetcrown is offline
 
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Default Re: Stop and Smell the Aqua Buddha (Dana Goldstein & Katherine Mangu-Ward)

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Originally Posted by GCox View Post
Progressives make no sense. The solution to having too many fat kids is longer school days? How does that compute? It's not like school is an active activity. Even if it does help it seems like a very indirect way of solving the problem. Why not be more direct and just directly incentivize the kids/parents. A fat tax or a skinny subsidy either one seems like it would have a better chance of providing results. Ethically it seems no more abominable than compelled education.

Which brings me to my real rant. What about the kids? What if they don’t want longer school days? I’m 31 now but I don’t remember ever wishing that school was longer when I was a kid. Consider that time is finite and that every minute I spent in school I could have been doing something else. How many awesome things did I miss out on so that when I was 18 I would be qualified to work a factory job? Compelled education is a monstrous thing we do to our children and should be abolished.
The American school day and year are on the short side, compared to other countries.
Some recent stats on how kids' time is spent
Your real rant is about "what kids want" ? Our schools are flawed, it's true, but I think you should keep in mind that extra hours spent in school would probably not be spent in an extra instructional hour (unless it was remedial, or elective by the student) but rather in a study hall, or a sport. And that money to create these programs would go to schools that don't have $$ for sports and study hall... it would go towards RESTORING programs that existed when I was in high school, when you could stay on campus and do homework with friends or be on a dance team, instead of being kicked out after the school day's over because there's no staffed supervision and as soon as the bell rings you're treated like a loiterer. I can't speak for all kids, but I remember enjoying being able to use the school outside of class time, I remember enjoying using sports equipment before the budget was cut and we'd just spend the hour walking laps.

People who complain that schools are a money pit pretend that per student $$$ hasn't been in decline in my lifetime. If you want the schools you grew up with, boomers, you need to spend on them like your parents did (and MORE, of course, but that's a baseline)

I don't know what "awesome things" you're specifically referring to, but if you don't graduate from high school, you can't even get a factory job these days, and you certainly can't go to college. It's cool if your parents want to allow you/fund your "awesome things" that truly are edifying; I think in general if kids are poor, bored, unsupervised, and have no place to go, they don't end up doing "awesome things" and these are the kids I care about.

I can't conceive of any "fat tax" that makes sense - how is it tracked? (Weighing your kid? Where? In school? Isn't that just as intrusive? And wouldn't the $$$ for this data collection go to the school then?) How are genetics factored out?

For less-affluent students, the American school has become the place where social services are distributed. I don't necessarily like it but that's how it is, but everything you suggest seeks to reward parents who are well-off/have leisure time/are better educated. If churches want to get $$$ for after-school programs, I'd be cool with that too.

If you haven't set foot in a public school lately, you should go take a tour and see the good and bad. If you haven't hung out with a 15-yr-old lately, you should do that too and see if you don't believe they wouldn't benefit from a gathering place or from a school with $$$ for intramurals.
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Old 08-11-2010, 01:49 PM
bjkeefe bjkeefe is offline
 
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Default Re: Stop and Smell the Aqua Buddha (Dana Goldstein & Katherine Mangu-Ward)

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Which brings me to my real rant. What about the kids? What if they don’t want longer school days? I’m 31 now but I don’t remember ever wishing that school was longer when I was a kid.
Oh I do. When it was good, it was the best way to spend time -- organized sports, art classes, music, watching movies in science class, blowing shit up in science labs, quiz games in math class, getting access to the computers, being let loose in the library to look stuff up, hearing interesting stories told in history and English, that feeling of having the penny drop, in any class, after a prolonged period of struggling to understand it, all sorts of ways.

Sure, unstructured, unsupervised free time just to hang out with friends is also good, but I remember many times thinking that too much of it was ultimately kind of boring. Think back to the ends of summer vacations in your childhood memories -- yes, there was dread of the looming new school year, but weren't there also some feelings of relief, and even excitement? How many times in August did you say, "MAAAAAAHHHHM! There's nothing to DOOO!"? Maybe it's just me, but I had those a lot.
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Old 08-11-2010, 01:56 PM
Ocean Ocean is offline
 
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Default Re: Stop and Smell the Aqua Buddha (Dana Goldstein & Katherine Mangu-Ward)

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Oh I do. When it was good, it was the best way to spend time -- organized sports, art classes, music, watching movies in science class, blowing shit up in science labs, quiz games in math class, getting access to the computers, being let loose in the library to look stuff up, hearing interesting stories told in history and English, that feeling of having the penny drop, in any class, after a prolonged period of struggling to understand it, all sorts of ways.

Sure, unstructured, unsupervised free time just to hang out with friends is also good, but I remember many times thinking that too much of it was ultimately kind of boring. Think back to the ends of summer vacations in your childhood memories -- yes, there was dread of the looming new school year, but weren't there also some feelings of relief, and even excitement? How many times in August did you say, "MAAAAAAHHHHM! There's nothing to DOOO!"? Maybe it's just me, but I had those a lot.
No, it wasn't just you. I actually looked forward to the end of summer vacations...
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  #31  
Old 08-11-2010, 02:30 PM
Wonderment Wonderment is offline
 
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Default Re: Stop and Smell the Aqua Buddha (Dana Goldstein & Katherine Mangu-Ward)

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Progressives make no sense.
Whatever.

Quote:
Which brings me to my real rant.
Of course.

Quote:
What about the kids? What if they don’t want longer school days? I’m 31 now but I don’t remember ever wishing that school was longer when I was a kid.
First of all I'm betting you didn't grow up in a neighborhood with drug dealers, gang members and pimps on the corner. Parents in those neighborhoods, who have to work all day, want after-school activities for their kids.

The activities can be paid for by the schools or they can be (better model) funded independently with the schools' cooperation. The alternative to a good education is boredom, apathy, risk-taking to alleviate the boredom and apathy and ultimately a life of poverty, prison and misery.


Quote:

How many awesome things did I miss out on so that when I was 18 I would be qualified to work a factory job? Compelled education is a monstrous thing we do to our children and should be abolished.
No one is arguing for boring schools. We do need better teachers, better programs and smaller classroom populations. Unfortunately, one of many problems for squeezing more money out of Congress is that we are "nation-building" in Iraq and Afghanistan which greatly depletes our resources for education at home.
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  #32  
Old 08-11-2010, 03:43 PM
Alexandrite Alexandrite is offline
 
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Default Re: Stop and Smell the Aqua Buddha (Dana Goldstein & Katherine Mangu-Ward)

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Originally Posted by Eliezer_Yudkowsky
Your Strength as a Rationalist

11 August 2007 12:21AM
(The following happened to me in an IRC chatroom, long enough ago that I was still hanging around in IRC chatrooms. Time has fuzzed the memory and my report may be imprecise.)

So there I was, in an IRC chatroom, when someone reports that a friend of his needs medical advice. His friend says that he's been having sudden chest pains, so he called an ambulance, and the ambulance showed up, but the paramedics told him it was nothing, and left, and now the chest pains are getting worse. What should his friend do?

I was confused by this story. I remembered reading about homeless people in New York who would call ambulances just to be taken someplace warm, and how the paramedics always had to take them to the emergency room, even on the 27th iteration. Because if they didn't, the ambulance company could be sued for lots and lots of money. Likewise, emergency rooms are legally obligated to treat anyone, regardless of ability to pay. (And the hospital absorbs the costs, which are enormous, so hospitals are closing their emergency rooms... It makes you wonder what's the point of having economists if we're just going to ignore them.) So I didn't quite understand how the described events could have happened. Anyone reporting sudden chest pains should have been hauled off by an ambulance instantly.

And this is where I fell down as a rationalist. I remembered several occasions where my doctor would completely fail to panic at the report of symptoms that seemed, to me, very alarming. And the Medical Establishment was always right. Every single time. I had chest pains myself, at one point, and the doctor patiently explained to me that I was describing chest muscle pain, not a heart attack. So I said into the IRC channel, "Well, if the paramedics told your friend it was nothing, it must really be nothing - they'd have hauled him off if there was the tiniest chance of serious trouble."

Thus I managed to explain the story within my existing model, though the fit still felt a little forced...


Later on, the fellow comes back into the IRC chatroom and says his friend made the whole thing up. Evidently this was not one of his more reliable friends.

I should have realized, perhaps, that an unknown acquaintance of an acquaintance in an IRC channel might be less reliable than a published journal article. Alas, belief is easier than disbelief; we believe instinctively, but disbelief requires a conscious effort.

So instead, by dint of mighty straining, I forced my model of reality to explain an anomaly that never actually happened. And I knew how embarrassing this was. I knew that the usefulness of a model is not what it can explain, but what it can't. A hypothesis that forbids nothing, permits everything, and thereby fails to constrain anticipation.

Your strength as a rationalist is your ability to be more confused by fiction than by reality. If you are equally good at explaining any outcome, you have zero knowledge.

We are all weak, from time to time; the sad part is that I could have been stronger. I had all the information I needed to arrive at the correct answer, I even noticed the problem, and then I ignored it. My feeling of confusion was a Clue, and I threw my Clue away.

I should have paid more attention to that sensation of still feels a little forced. It's one of the most important feelings a truthseeker can have, a part of your strength as a rationalist. It is a design flaw in human cognition that this sensation manifests as a quiet strain in the back of your mind, instead of a wailing alarm siren and a glowing neon sign reading "EITHER YOUR MODEL IS FALSE OR THIS STORY IS WRONG."
The Denial:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NaTrh0a8rT4#t=2m30s

I'll discuss some of the other things in the video later if I get a chance.
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  #33  
Old 08-11-2010, 04:00 PM
bjkeefe bjkeefe is offline
 
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Default Re: Stop and Smell the Aqua Buddha (Dana Goldstein & Katherine Mangu-Ward)

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Originally Posted by Alexandrite View Post
The Denial:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NaTrh0a8rT4#t=2m30s

I'll discuss some of the other things in the video later if I get a chance.
I'm not going to bother watching that video, though thanks for sharing the link, because as far as I'm concerned, the length of time it took him to issue a denial -- i.e., after a day or two of trying other tactics, not to mention however long GQ gave them before running the story -- strongly suggests to me his aides were running around seeing who needed to be shut up, how much that was going to cost, and what else they'd need to do to pull off a successful denial.

The Eliezer post was pretty fun to read. Thanks for that, too.
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  #34  
Old 08-11-2010, 04:18 PM
bjkeefe bjkeefe is offline
 
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Default Re: Stop and Smell the Aqua Buddha (Dana Goldstein & Katherine Mangu-Ward)

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Originally Posted by bjkeefe View Post
I'm not going to bother watching that video, though thanks for sharing the link, because as far as I'm concerned, the length of time it took him to issue a denial -- i.e., after a day or two of trying other tactics, not to mention however long GQ gave them before running the story -- strongly suggests to me his aides were running around seeing who needed to be shut up, how much that was going to cost, and what else they'd need to do to pull off a successful denial.

The Eliezer post was pretty fun to read. Thanks for that, too.
But wait, there's more Randy news!

Greg Sargent of The Plum Line got an exclusive interview with the woman who reported being kidnapped, etc., by Paul (but not "in a legal sense," she now says). Jack Stuef catches the important part:

Quote:
Now she has clarified her remarks, and it turns out this was just some sort of 70’s role-playing thing. “[They] came over to my house as friends that I knew,” she said, reportedly. “They immediately said, `We’re going to tie you up and go for a ride.’” Oh, that sounds like a fun thing friends do when they hang out! This is totally innoucuous! So why isn’t she releasing her name? She’s afraid of what Teabaggers will do to her. Seriously.

Quote:
In our conversation, she elaborated that she doesn’t want her name in print because she’s a clinical psychologist who works with former members of the military, some of whom are Tea Partyers, and fears that complicating Paul’s Senate run could put her in danger.
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  #35  
Old 08-11-2010, 05:52 PM
TwinSwords TwinSwords is offline
 
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Default Re: Stop and Smell the Aqua Buddha (Dana Goldstein & Katherine Mangu-Ward)

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Originally Posted by bjkeefe View Post
But wait, there's more Randy news!

Greg Sargent of The Plum Line got an exclusive interview with the woman who reported being kidnapped, etc., by Paul (but not "in a legal sense," she now says). Jack Stuef catches the important part:
Of course, anyone who has listened to more than a handful of tea partiers know very well that her fear of violent retaliation is perfectly rational and completely justified. She's an "enemy of the state," after all, a "traitor," trying to help Obama "destroy America." And what do you do with enemies, traitors, and people trying to destroy America? Ask a teabagger; they will tell you. They're not shy.
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Old 08-11-2010, 06:34 PM
Abdicate Abdicate is offline
 
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Default Several Dana Goldstein remarks

Dana says, When you have less money to spend on nutrition, you're going to go spend it on these really high-fat, high-calorie foods that leave you feeling satisfied having spent less...

Seeking to defend the 'rationality' of obesity among the poor, Goldstein patronizes.

She says, '...how we eat is so cultural and comes from our family and from our neighborhood' -- again, yuck.

Goldstein, reaching out to the libertarian wants to combine the best of market-driven and union-suggested educational reforms, and sees teachers as middle-income workers and supports their efforts to have their pay increased by using collective-bargaining power.

When a liberal argues that we can advance socially by legislating higher pay for workers ('teachers', in this case), the libertarian should have a clear response.

On Michelle Rhee, Goldstein: 'she's a powerful woman of color in a position where she's really trying to make change--all that I respect'

Very cloying, again.

Last edited by Abdicate; 08-11-2010 at 06:35 PM.. Reason: superfluous sentence
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  #37  
Old 08-12-2010, 11:20 AM
chubbykidresearcher chubbykidresearcher is offline
 
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Default Re: Stop and Smell the Aqua Buddha (Dana Goldstein & Katherine Mangu-Ward)

re: childhood obesity

I haven't been so horrified for a long time. The woman from the daily beast started her argument with something along the lines of we learn about food in our families and neighborhoods and then goes on to suggest that we should keep "poor kids" in school for all 3 meals (breakfast, lunch, and an 'early dinner'). What was she REALLY saying? That social engineering is okay so long as it's only for poor kids and families? That what poor kids learn from their families and their neighborhoods about food is SO AWFUL that they need to go to school to eat all 3 meals. And even worse, she overlooks the fact that school staff and teachers just might have their own families waiting for them at home!

I tend to avoid this type of blogging commentary because it usually involves the opinions of horrifically uninformed yet well-employed individuals. Childhood obesity is a REAL PROBLEM for everyone and requires action on many fronts. No one involved with the cause would ever suggest that a single strategy is going to make a dent. Michelle Obama is trying to raise awareness and, I hope, keep health insurance reform --absolutely essential if we are to treat the aging overweight and obese population's chronic conditions -- on the table. Providing healthier lunch (and breakfast) options at school sounds like a wise investment in ALL children. Keep your hands out of precious family mealtimes.
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Old 08-12-2010, 11:50 AM
Ocean Ocean is offline
 
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Default Re: Stop and Smell the Aqua Buddha (Dana Goldstein & Katherine Mangu-Ward)

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Originally Posted by chubbykidresearcher View Post
re: childhood obesity

I haven't been so horrified for a long time. The woman from the daily beast started her argument with something along the lines of we learn about food in our families and neighborhoods and then goes on to suggest that we should keep "poor kids" in school for all 3 meals (breakfast, lunch, and an 'early dinner'). What was she REALLY saying? That social engineering is okay so long as it's only for poor kids and families? That what poor kids learn from their families and their neighborhoods about food is SO AWFUL that they need to go to school to eat all 3 meals. And even worse, she overlooks the fact that school staff and teachers just might have their own families waiting for them at home!
I find your comment somewhat harsh. I do agree that Dana's thoughts about how to help kids with obesity problems was rather naive, at best.

In her defense, I would say that, if at all, teachers would be required to have normal length days (8 hours). But, the ideas that Dana offered may not even require teachers to stay longer. The extended day can be covered by other kinds of activities. She referred mostly to poor kids perhaps because she thought that this is a population with the least resources to make changes in their diet or change other activities in order to address obesity.

I wouldn't think that the problem of obesity could be solved by providing meals, but rather by educating people, concretely, about what the right and wrong food choices are, and making sure that they have the resources to buy appropriate food. Perhaps subsidizing the purchase of fruits and vegetables for poor families would be a reasonable measure. Or perhaps taxing fattening foods at a higher rate. But none of these have anything to do with school.

At the school level, I can only think that offering healthy alternatives isn't enough. They should completely eliminate unhealthy alternatives, which they still provide plentifully. And the most important part would be to make sure all kids get daily exercise. That shouldn't be so difficult to do.

Quote:
I tend to avoid this type of blogging commentary because it usually involves the opinions of horrifically uninformed yet well-employed individuals. Childhood obesity is a REAL PROBLEM for everyone and requires action on many fronts. No one involved with the cause would ever suggest that a single strategy is going to make a dent. Michelle Obama is trying to raise awareness and, I hope, keep health insurance reform --absolutely essential if we are to treat the aging overweight and obese population's chronic conditions -- on the table. Providing healthier lunch (and breakfast) options at school sounds like a wise investment in ALL children. Keep your hands out of precious family mealtimes.
I see you show concern for the problem and also have concrete ideas. Your handle suggests you're a researcher. If I may, what kind of work do you do?
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  #39  
Old 08-15-2010, 10:59 AM
Lyle
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Default Re: Stop and Smell the Aqua Buddha (Dana Goldstein & Katherine Mangu-Ward)

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Perhaps subsidizing the purchase of fruits and vegetables for poor families would be a reasonable measure.
Food stamps for veggies. Interesting idea, but my guess is it'll be like the kids in the cafeteria who pass up the greens they're given... those on food stamps will too. Nice idea though.

Quote:
Or perhaps taxing fattening foods at a higher rate. But none of these have anything to do with school.
Really bad idea (respectfully and humbly said), because the price of basic foods is arguably inelastic for people. It's like taxing cigarettes, higher price cigarettes don't keep the working class and poor from buying them. So when you raise the price of such foods what you're actually doing is simply making the poor or less affluent more poor and more less affluent, because a greater percentage of their income is going to food cause they have to by food. They don't have a choice. That leaves them with less money to spend elsewhere. So taxing food harms the poor. And if you're against poverty, you shouldn't be taxing food... cause the poor would hurt the most on a food tax, like they do on a plethora of sales taxes.

Quote:
And the most important part would be to make sure all kids get daily exercise. That shouldn't be so difficult to do.
This I agree with and is the main reason I think there's a lot of fatties around. We do not exercise enough... like we used to as a society. Kids should all be forced to do PE and to keep doing PE all the way through high school. Mandatory athletics. No more "this makes my child feel bad about herself" bullshit. No more "the others might hurt him" bullshit. They then can go get fat in college, at their new job, at home, or not.

Last edited by Lyle; 08-15-2010 at 11:05 AM..
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  #40  
Old 08-15-2010, 12:10 PM
Ocean Ocean is offline
 
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Default Re: Stop and Smell the Aqua Buddha (Dana Goldstein & Katherine Mangu-Ward)

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Originally Posted by Lyle View Post
Food stamps for veggies. Interesting idea, but my guess is it'll be like the kids in the cafeteria who pass up the greens they're given... those on food stamps will too. Nice idea though.
The idea is that people with limited income tend to buy cheaper food items, which tend to be loaded with sugar and fat. Fruits and vegetables tend to be more expensive. I agree that people would have to learn how to eat differently, but that's the whole idea.

Quote:
Really bad idea (respectfully and humbly said), ...
That's fine, Lyle. I've heard that many times before. And rather often deservedly.

Quote:
...inelastic for people. It's like taxing cigarettes, higher price cigarettes don't keep the working class and poor from buying them. So when you raise the price of such foods what you're actually doing is simply making the poor or less affluent more poor and more less affluent, because a greater percentage of their income is going to food cause they have to by food. They don't have a choice. That leaves them with less money to spend elsewhere. So taxing food harms the poor. And if you're against poverty, you shouldn't be taxing food... cause the poor would hurt the most on a food tax, like they do on a plethora of sales taxes.
If buying a burger with french fries costs $20, but grilled chicken with half baked potato and a side of salad or veggies cost $5, people may consider the switch. As to cigarettes, as far as I known increased price decreases use. See here.


Quote:
This I agree with and is the main reason I think there's a lot of fatties around. We do not exercise enough... like we used to as a society. Kids should all be forced to do PE and to keep doing PE all the way through high school. Mandatory athletics. No more "this makes my child feel bad about herself" bullshit. No more "the others might hurt him" bullshit. They then can go get fat in college, at their new job, at home, or not.
Yes, we all need to get out there and exercise!
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