Take note/FIAF – Friday edition

Peggy Noonan in WSJ:

The Democratic leadership in the House appears to have lost another kind of control, fleeing Washington without passing a federal budget or extending even part of the Bush-era tax cuts, which are due to expire on Jan. 1. Democrats hold a solid majority in the House. They have a hitherto-powerful speaker.And the decision to adjourn passed by only a single vote—that of Nancy Pelosi, who saw 39 Democrats join the Republicans in dissenting.

*****

I got into a long discussion yesterday at the gym (so long, I had to cut short my cardio and SKIP my ab work) about education with a teacher. She defended her school, so I had to point out that it’s NOT “her” school. It’s 1) everything above her school and 2) inner city schools.

Her complaint? That there was someone hired recently that was “in charge” of overseeing the various English departments. Her “wonderful advice” was to mandate that all seniors write an essay on day X of school in preparation for writing a college essay.

The teacher didn’t have to include the evaluation in a grade, and there was a specific rubric as to the specific grading of the essay. They were given a specific subject.

So, a higher-up imposes what they think teachers should do, taking away whatever they may have planned for that day, for some sort of busy-work essay that need not count toward anything.

The worst part? The administrator didn’t even think it up herself. She took it directly off of a college’s website – the essay; the rubric, everything.

So, you want to know where all the money in education is going? To folks like HER. Why do English teachers need someone “from above” telling them what they need to do to prepare their students tasks such as college essays? Shouldn’t they … KNOW what to teach?

And, if they don’t … shouldn’t they be fired?

******
Speaking of Education, Rich Lowry in NRO:

Newark spends more per pupil than any other city in the country, and gets dismayingly little for it. For $22,000 per pupil — more than twice the national average — it graduates half its students.

$22,000 per student. That’s just … astonishing. Yet you still get blather like this:

“Who’s going to prioritize our young people to make sure they’ve got the skills they need to succeed?” the president said.
“Nothing’s going to be more important in terms of our long-term success.” Obama argued that Republicans would cut education spending to pay for tax cuts for the rich.

THEY’RE GOING TO CUT SPENDING. Well, shit, if we’re spending $22,000 per student for 50% failure, perhaps we should cut back?

*****

I’m all for Obama taking a little break. I mean, he’s barely had any time off this year.

According to the pool report, Obama thanked Phillips for the work he and his wife have done for Team Obama. Then the president mentioned that Phillips and Douglass have an opulent place in Italy and wondered why there had been no invitation to visit. “I’d appreciate a little break and some Tuscan sun,” the president said, according to the pool report. “Some pasta. I can use it.”

Read more at the Washington Examiner: http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/blogs/beltway-confidential/Obama-Id-appreciate-a-little-break-104126174.html#ixzz1179yGbUZ

I mean, the guy hardly gets away.

****
Since I’m obsessing on Apocalyptica right now, your FIAF song is the following:

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