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Showing posts from December, 2005

The 2005 Ozarks Angel

I started this blog back in May when I had a couple of days off from work due to a swollen nut. That healed up nicely, in case you were wondering, but I'm still paying the $800 bill. Gotta love our healthcare system - oh, and my wonderful school health insurance covered a whopping $82. Anyway, that was an unlikely topic to start a blog, but there it is. Now, some 3,400 clicks later, we're still plugging away. Here's a review of the year 2005 sifted through some of the Ozarks Angel posts.

Of course, the really huge story that christened this crazy year of 2005 was the slow discovery of the devastation incurred by the killer tsunami that swept away some quarter of a million lives in Asia. Here at home, president Bush was characteristically distant and, despite daily briefings, seemingly uninformed about the magnitude of this disaster - a foreshadowing of his lackadaisical response to the Katrina disaster seven months later. It seems Bush can only get himself worked up if ther…

Merry Christmas, Yada, Yada

I gave all my classes a test on the last day before Christmas break. Humbug! One kid asked why I was such a Scrooge, and my answer went something like this:

The original cause for celebration was suppose to be the birth of a spiritual being whose life and teachings changed the entire world and inspired countless millions of followers to love their neighbors as themselves, pursue peace over war and violence, protect the innocent, take care of the poor and sick and to spread love and understanding among all people, regardless of their social standing.

And what do we now do to celebrate this spiritual being's birth? We get out our credit cards and shop like madmen . . . we measure the season's success by keeping a close eye on consumer spending, credit card debt and whether or not massive department stores match their earnings estimates. We erect quaint little prop-up manger scenes outside fast food restaurants - I saw one manger scene in front of a Baptist church that had Santa Cl…

Oral Arguments for Impeachment

No Surprise From Gov. Blunt

As if on cue, the morning after yesterday's Ozarks Angel post about how a Washington, D. C. political action group is supplying talking points for Republican politicians on education "reform", our esteemed boy-governor Blunt stepped right up and submits a News-Leader guest editorial that parrots virtually every point we wrote about last night. How wonderful it must be to have other people do your thinking for you.

As predicted, Blunt spoke of supplying 65% of funding "directly to the classrooms", and then went to bat for raising teacher salaries, which he called, presumably with a straight face, "the most important part of any school district's budget". Blunt then went on to describe how appalled he was that Missouri teacher salaries are ranked 44th in the U. S.. (If you can find a Republican governor or legislator who has called for teacher salary increases in the last 25 years, I'll buy you lunch.)

Last night I wrote that this 65% solution aim…

65% Solution Media Blitz Coming Soon

Be prepared for the next big thing in politically-motivated, GOP-backed bullshit regarding public education - the much-heralded and very controversial "65% Solution". It's coming to you via our esteemed boy-governor, Matt Blunt, in the form of a statewide referendum which is tentatively schedule for next November. I can almost hear the television commercials already.

This new educational shell game comes to us by way of a Washington, D. C. lobbying group called "First Class Education"(FCE) - an organization founded by millionaire entrepreneur Patrick M. Byrne, president of online shopping spot Overstock.com. Byrne, who is into martial arts and is a former boxer, fashions himself as the Robin Hood of public education. The 65% plan would supposedly improve classroom instruction by guaranteeing that 65% of all education revenue be directly targeted to teachers and students in the classroom. Sounds simple enough. This should play well here in God's country.

The…