Wednesday, February 25, 2009

California in Decline

The worse part of all of this is that the leftists who control the state's politics still believe that high taxes is the solution...welcome to serfdom.

For the full article go to WSJ.

You thought Washington's stimulus debate was depressing, take a look at the long-running budget spectacle in California. The Golden State's deficit has reached $42 billion, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger is threatening to furlough 20,000 state workers (go ahead, make our day), and as we went to press yesterday Democrats who control the legislature had blocked lawmakers from leaving until they finally get a deal.

It's sad to watch. The Golden State -- which a decade ago was the booming technology capital of the world -- has been done in by two decades of chronic overspending, overregulating and a hyperprogressive tax code that exaggerates the impact on state revenues of economic boom and bust. Total state expenditures have grown to $145 billion in 2008 from $104 billion in 2003 and California now has the worst credit rating in the nation -- worse even than Louisiana's. It also has the nation's fourth highest unemployment rate of 9.3% (after Michigan, Rhode Island and South Carolina) and the second highest home foreclosure rate (after Nevada).
Roughly 1.4 million more nonimmigrant Americans have left California than entered over the last decade, according to the American Legislative Exchange Council. California is suffering more than most states from the housing bust, but its politicians also showed less spending restraint during the boom.

To close the current deficit, the pols in Sacramento are nearing a deal that cuts spending by $15 billion and raises $14.2 billion in higher taxes on income, sales, gasoline and cars. Six years ago Mr. Schwarzenegger helped depose Governor Gray Davis by calling him "Car-taxula." Now he's agreed to double the same tax.

Mr. Schwarzenegger has won at least some concessions from Democrats, who run the most liberal legislature this side of Trenton. The budget deal contains a handful of useful tax breaks for job creation and the first public union workplace reforms in a decade; it also creates a new rainy day fund. These taxpayer victories wouldn't have been possible if Republicans in the legislature hadn't held out for them.

But the plan is still far short of the radical tax and spending surgery the state needs. It's loaded with short-term gimmicks -- such as $5 billion of borrowing from future lottery receipts and nearly $10 billion in one-time federal stimulus cash. Even proponents concede the plan doesn't balance spending and revenues 18 months from now.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Definitions...What they should be....

Communism - An Equality of zeroes.
Capitalism - An Inequality of zeroes.
Democracy - Government by the elected mediocrity.
Fear - The nothing that terrifies us.
Film critic - A nobody's nobody.
Life - A state of confusion between birth and death.
Luck - Proof that randomness does not exist.
Project Manager - Person hired to create a false sense of organization.
Sleep - The last amateur sport.
Time - That ingredient that makes all things impossible.
War - The less hypocritical version of peace.
Mother - The woman who is always giving birth to you.
United Nations - Incompetence in numbers.
Politics - The sand box for those who don't play well with others.
Diamond - A man's worst friend.
Money - An entity with a pocket holding time measured in nanoseconds.
Food - The unifying property that makes us the nectar of the gods.
Sex drive - That aspect of our personality that fails to separate us from the animals.
Work - The price we feel we must pay.
Guilt - The ditch on the road to contentment.
Civilization - The end product of many centuries of disorganization.
Thought - The unfamiliar which we so fear.
Consultant - A Rolling stone gathering other people's moss.
Business Policy - An early proof of the march to chaos.
Committee decision - The broth spoilt by too many cooks.
Maverick - One who has chosen to think
Accountant - The matador sent out to destroy the creative bull.
Corporate lawyer - Individual who complicates the already complex.
Sales - To perjure for profit.
Executive - Those in charge of milking the cow.
New World Order - Same as the Old War order. Just different people in charge.
Bonus - The light that makes many hands work.
Gambling - Art of parting money from a fool.
Affirmative Action - Unnatural selection

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Scientific Concepts

Most Challenging Scientific Concepts for High School Students
(based on my experience as a teacher).

1. Newton’s Second Law of Motion (F=ma or F=mdv/dt)
2. The concept of the mole in chemistry.
3. Redox Reactions and its applications in electrochemistry.
4. Genetic Recombination.
5. Circular motion.
6. Lenz’s Law in Electromagnetism.
7. Acid-Base Buffering.
8. The working of the Electron Transport Chain.
9. Gibbs Free Energy
10. Angular Momentum.

On Abortion

I support a women’s right to choose but believe that access to abortion should be restricted to a three month period following conception. As a consequence I am opposed to later stage Partial Birth abortion unless the circumstances are so severe that reasonable alternatives are virtually non-existent (mother’s life in danger for example). Abortion is a classic tradeoff issue where necessary pragmatism butts heads with a vital moral predicament. While this issue, perhaps more than any other, appears on the surface to be greatly polarized a more detailed understanding shows that this is not the case. Indeed there is room for a middle ground where I believe my position resides. Despite my support for the pro-choice position I do so with somewhat of a heavy heart in realizing that I have done so on largely utilitarian grounds.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

More on Whiteness Theory

About a week ago I posted a critique of whiteness theory. on the York University bulletin board (as well as this blog). One of the frequent readers raised some objections.
Here is my response in Red. His words are in black.

I think this is a very interesting comparison, Gavin, but I also believe that the same comparison can be made with just about any powerful group that sees inequities in existing social systems. Whiteness theory is more than just a grouping…. it is an overriding ideology …. As for groups your argument would have to be looked at on a case by case basis .My experience though is that there are a significant number of groups which oppose inequities in society that are at the same time not driven by Race-Based Fascism eg. The Canadian Civil Liberties Union, SPLC, ADL, Christian Children’s Fund, Amnesty International, Habitat for Humanity, Salvation Army etc. From what I have read of Martin Luther King ( a great man by any standard) he would not have approved of Whiteness Theory either. King preached solidarity…Whiteness Theory is all about reverse discrimination as a mechanism toward a greater good.

There are certainly some I think you might be able to substitute, say, feminism in these same lines and come up with a scenario that fits in with the liberation movement of the late 1960s and 1970s. Radical Feminism is a type of fascism…a topic for another time (which is why the term Feminazi carries with it a certain truism)…Mainstream feminism is not however…. Some but not all Liberation movements were/are fascist as well…In South Africa the PAC (but not the bulk of the ANC) falls into this category. Fascist ideologies are particularly prevalent in the Muslim World these days. Wahhabism and Salafism are at their core fascist.

I still think that there is value in having the discourse. I am not saying that it should be censored but it certainly needs to be taught alongside other strategies that would give it balance and place it in perspective. I am not convinced that Professors who champion Whiteness Theory are doing this (certainly it wasn’t what I witnessed at York). So in a sense they are brainwashing their students who are forced to listen to their ideological bias as if it were gospel. This is not education….

Isn't one of the most important things that all people have equal opportunities in a society and that barriers to success be investigated, where necessary, dismantled and then rebridged to improve everyone's ability to engage in a discussion about what a society should look like? I agree that is why I champion across-the board fairness, equal treatment for all and a focus on individual as opposed to group rights.

Following this line, isn't the university the best place to have this discussion? Of course…but I don’t believe that it is happening… least not to the extent that it should be. Yes, perhaps York (and maybe other education faculties) have swung too far to one side, but the questions still need to be raised, investigated, discussed and, by graduating new teachers who have at least tried to wrangle with these questions, there is an opportunity to look for clear inequities within the educational systems into which they are hired. I don't think this is wrong, as long as those who are in the system use their critical skills to evaluate the questions that are being asked of them. However if students aren’t given access to the full scope of the argument (from all sides) in class time how can we expect them to think critically?

Political Labeling

It is important to make a distinction between labeling and classification. Almost every knowledge based system makes uses of a classification paradigm to discern overall trends of thoughts and philosophies. This is useful in politics as it allows us to better understand the movements that drive history (politics is essentially history in the present). I agree that applying right/left labeling to such specific issues as abortion/stem cells/death penalty is silly but the use of such terms as Leftism and Rightism to describe political attitudes with respect to such broader themes as free markets, group/individual rights, private property ownership is not.

Ron Paul

Ron Paul is certainly one of the more intriguing characters in the US Congress. He is a true Libertartian (actually he ran for President once on a Libertarian Party ticket) who wears the free market thinking of the Austrian School of Economics on his sleeve. He speaks well and has marketed himself effectively on the internet. I tend to agree with him on many economic issues (although I am not a liberatarian) however I find his foreign policy arguments to be shortsighted and dangerous especially in a world where the necessity of a strong US as a counterwight to Islamofascism and other anti-democracy ideologies is vital. In a sense his position is a throwback to Republican Isolationism of the 1920s-1930s (although he may not be as extreme as Pat Buchanan on this issue). As someone who aligns himself to some extent with the policies of FDR and Truman (especially Truman) I cannot endorse Paul. I also disagree with his Pro-Life stance. He does however make sense in his opposition to affirmative action.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Israel nears an election

It looks as though Netantahu's lead is slipping but he still has the edge over Kadima and Labour. The Big mover though is Avigdor Leberman's right wing Israel our Home. I personally still see Netanyahu as the best bet though.

Source: Front Page

My embedded comments in Red

Israel at the Polls
By P. David Hornik

As Israelis go to the polls today in the country’s 18th parliamentary election, the main story over the last couple of weeks has been the rapidly declining lead of former prime minister Bibi Netanyahu’s Likud Party over Tzipi Livni’s Kadima Party. The implications of that story for the future course of Israeli politics are indeed far-reaching (when is an Israeli election not like that? they are always critical...).

Netanyahu’s decline is attributed mainly to the rise of a third party, Avigdor Lieberman’s Israel Beiteinu (Israel Our Home). Right-wing like Likud, Israel Our Home has appealed to many Jewish Israelis exasperated with the provocations of Israeli Arabs. That exasperation peaked during the recent Gaza war, when Israeli Jews looked on as Israeli Arabs held pro-Hamas demonstrations. (This certainly was a low part in relations between the two communities)Against this background, Lieberman’s campaign promise to make Israeli citizenship conditional on loyalty to the country has gained popularity. (I like this idea...the last thing Israel needs is more fifth columnists).

Netanyahu’s depressed poll numbers also may be attributed to right-wing voters’ disgruntlement over his avowals to form a national-unity government with centrist Kadima and/or the center-Left Labor Party of current Defense Minister Ehud Barak (who almost gave away the farm several years ago) . In addition, Netanyahu has ruffled right-wing feathers with his known preference for keeping Barak on as defense minister. Keenly aware of the threat posed by Iran, Netanyahu is believed to view Barak’s good chemistry with U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates as an important asset. (Bibi has a point here but I would keep Barak on a short leash).

Even with these recent dents to his popularity, Netanyahu remains the frontrunner. An aggregate of the latest polls shows Likud still leading with 26 Knesset seats (out of 120) to Kadima’s 23, Israel Our Home next at 18 and Labor trailing at 16. The two right-wing parties’ clear edge is further enhanced when the various smaller parties are added to the mix, with the center-Right bloc of Likud, Israel Our Home, and right-wing/religious satellite parties totaling 65-70 mandates to 50-55 for the center-Left bloc led by Kadima and Labor. (its still pretty close...Isn't proprtional representation annoying?)

And even that understates the center-Right’s strength. The 50-55 total for the rival bloc includes about 10 seats for Arab parties that are avowedly anti-Zionist and would not be included in any governing coalition. (Thank G-d) Add to that the fact that about a third of the Kadima MKs can be described as right-leaning, and it’s clear that the Israeli electorate now tends strongly to the Right of the spectrum (I prefer to see it as a giant wake-up call) , averse or at least skeptical of the once-dominant “land-for-peace” paradigm in dealing with hostile neighbors like the Palestinians and Syria. (The big issue though is Obama...How will he pressure Israel?)

Nonetheless, Netanyahu’s public appeals up to Election Day have shown him to be nervous and worried, and he has good reasons to be so. There is still the small possibility that Livni/Kadima will defeat him by a seat or two. Were that to occur, Livni would still find it difficult to form a coalition. Netanyahu rules out joining a Livni-led coalition; some Labor members rule out joining a coalition that includes Lieberman; that leaves a mess of small parties with crisscrossing animosities. Still, even if Livni fails and Netanyahu gets a chance to lead, a loss to Livni/Kadima would be a blow to Netanyahu/Likud’s prestige and political potency.

The larger possibility is that, thanks to Lieberman and Israel Our Home, Likud will win by only a small plurality and will have to form a coalition government—Israel’s 32nd in 60 years . But such a broad “unity” coalition will be wobbly, subject to extortionate pressures from all sides, and doomed yet again to a short shelf life (yet the Canadian left seems to like them ...go figure)

It’s against these possibilities that Netanyahu has been warning right-wing voters, urging them to forgo Israel Our Home and the smaller parties and to stay with the Likud. I understand his concern but Bibi has to show Israeli voters that he is the Bibi of 2008 not 1998....Though he makes a sound case, the best he can hope for at this point—unless the polls are way off—is, indeed, for Likud to edge out Livni/Kadima by a few seats and to become the leading, but by no means dominant, coalition-forming party (the end of BLO ....Barak, Livni and Olmert... was PLO before Barak replaced Peretz...)

Thus, the implications of this election for Israeli politics are already plain to see. The mishap of this election campaign is the rise of Lieberman/Israel Our Home. Though an intense patriot and a Russian immigrant with some fresh perspectives, Lieberman can hardly vie with Netanyahu’s intelligence, diplomatic sophistication, and proven ability in both the defense and economic spheres (although he has the advantage of not being tainted by internationalism). Lieberman’s party includes some attractive candidates but, again, cannot compare with Likud’s current impressive lineup that includes former chief of staff Moshe Yaalon, former science minister Benny Begin (still not a patch on his dad) , security expert Yuval Steinitz, and other figures of acumen and integrity. Lieberman’s successful stoking of popular fear and resentment toward Israeli Arabs—attitudes that have some basis but which also require nuance and balance—comes at the expense, for some voters, of a more sober assessment of the challenges Israel faces and which politician is best suited to meet them.

That power will be distributed among other parties is no consolation. Particularly after the current Kadima and Labor-led government’s latest mishap – a war against Hamas that has left the terrorist organization with the capacity to fire rockets and to smuggle in arms (What an awful shame....)– Netanyahu’s call to include these parties in the next government causes understandable frustration. His strongest defense is that the country needs maximal unity to face the Iranian threat (fair enough) His claims about the need to defeat Hamas, or to retain the Golan Heights and a united Jerusalem, are harder to reconcile with keeping these parties—which favor phony ceasefires and capitulations—at the helm of the nation (I see it as a recipe for more strife and bickering...)

Given a parliamentary system with an inherent centrifugal tendency, it has never been easy to achieve governmental stability in Israel. But it has never been more necessary, especially given the Iranian and other threats; the worldwide economic downturn; and a new U.S. administration whose policy toward Israel and the Middle East is still uncertain (the George Mitchell factor is a concern....). It would be heartening to think that this time stability will trump fractiousness in the Israeli parliament. Unfortunately, this latest election campaign has instilled no such confidence. (Maybe Israel should go it alone for a while...I am not so keen on theb idea but it may have some merit...)

The York University Saga II

This is a response I wrote to critics of my York University assessment post - from last week.

To All

I will not reply specifically to the silly name calling and nonsensical grunts that define some of the last few barbs directed at me and others. Instead I wish to focus on the overall assertion that I am anti-York. This is not true.

York University has its problems as does every institution of higher learning. However its through these challenges that systems evolve…often for the better. My critique of the strike situation was not intended to rub salt in already festering wounds but rather to highlight a bigger picture that extends beyond this particular context. It was directed at the wider system. Overall York University is a force of good in the universe (as are the vast majority of higher education institutions…. even Berkley) but this does not mean that it has many fissures and chasms that need to be addressed. This was the focus of my reply.

I have mentioned before that I attended York’s MST program. My net experience was certainly positive. Yes there were several courses that appeared to be a waste of time (including a Foundations program that was driven by a single ideology - with no opposing views to the contrary) but this was ultimately outweighed by the constructivist and Vygotzkian methodologies, as well as other types of student centered learning, that I was on hand to receive from such dedicated professionals as Maurice Di Giuseppe and Wai Yin Mok (indeed I was very fortunate). Both are a credit to the profession. In fact I have taken the insights that I internalized as a student in this program back to the classroom and I know that it has helped make me a better teacher especially when working with applied and college level students.

On a different but somewhat related issue I make no apologies for my political stance. I am a classical liberal/conservative who believes strongly in the Judeo-Christian principles that define and have been central to the development of western civilization. This does not mean that I oppose the influence of other cultural inputs. To the contrary I welcomesuch enrichment provided that these do not run contrary to the ideals of free speech, democracy, responsible government and the rights if the individual. In fact I believe that Western Civilization has a strong history of accommodation to reasonable diversity.

In retrospect I have been a student of the human condition for as long as I can remember. Perhaps it’s a product of an inquiring mind, but I prefer to think of it as a cultivated sensitivity towards the betterment of our species. Its largely this passion that made me leave engineering to become a teacher. I have not regretted my decision for a single day. As a teacher I have worked in both the private and public boards. At present I teach physics and general science at an urban school here in metro. I have a critical maxim that I live by and that is to treat all my students fairly as human beings regardless of skin colour, ethnicity, income status, sexual orientation etc. I have yet to encounter a problem with such a philosophy. My students seem to appreciate this even handed approach as well.

I believe that education is the bedrock of our civilization. Without it the gains of science, law, art and culture would flounder ….as would the linchpins of democracy and free speech (I repeat these ideals to emphasize their importance). In short education is the rudder steering our shared wisdom into the future. However it is also our one safeguard against the lurking barbarisms that challenge the cumulative gain.

I am critical of social engineering whether it manifests itself in the seemingly more benign forms of white privilege, the race empowerment model, Freire’s critical pedagogy (which I do not believe to be critical at all) or the more malignant legacies of National Socialism, Marxist-Leninism , Maoism, Stalinism, International Socialism, Trotskyism and other so-called ‘progressive’ fascisms. I believe that the turmoil of history caused by these destructive philosophies (particularly in the last century) vindicates my position here.

Sadly I see a commonality that permeates each of these constructs that is echoed in the thinking of several teacher/teacher candidates on this board (and its offspring Talking Politics) - That is an inability to accept the notion of dissent. This is not so much disturbing as it is frightening especially when the monoculture of political belief is suggested as a litmus test to narrow the broad spectrum of candidates entering the profession. Anyone who has faith in liberal education values (as I do) must at the very least shudder when they hear such sentiment being expressed.

Best Wishes till later

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Whiteness Theory - Race Based Fascism

As most of you know I am not at all supportive of the idea of race based education. In particular I am very critical of whiteness theory. I see it as a fundamentally flawed construct that if taken to heart has the potential for much abuse and harm. Unfortunately its popularity in education has grown…. largely due to an ever expanding cadre of zealots who have worked resolutely to spread such dogma into education programs across North American campuses. Whiteness Theory is a dangerous idea for many reasons. In fact I would go so far as to say that it at its heart it is nothing more than another example of race-based fascism.

The most common example of race-based fascism (which was not the Fascism of Mussolini, Franco, Peron and Salazar) is National Socialism. The ideology most associated with the Third Reich. Now I can see some eyes rolling at my suggestion (comparisons with Nazism are unfortunately a dime-a-dozen these days) but I urge you, to hear me out. If you follow my points you will see that the similarity is more than just uncanny.

Lets look at this (there is a redundancy in some of the language but this is intentional)

1.National Socialism sees the world in terms of race.
Whiteness Theorists see the world in terms of race.

2. For National Socialists unjust power is held by the Jew
For Whiteness Theorists unjust power is held by white heterosexual males.

3. National Socialists believe that Jews must be stripped of their power.
Whiteness Theorists believe that white heterosexual males must be stripped of their power.

4. National Socialists believe in biasing the educational curriculum to advance their ideology.
Whiteness Theorists believe in biasing the educational curriculum to advance their ideology.
Both believe in preaching to a captive audience.

5.National Socialists sought alliances with others when it suited them (Japanese and Italian Fascists, Non-Nazi German nationalists etc).
Whiteness Theorists seek alliances with others when it suits them (multi-culturists, Marxists, unionists, gay advocacy groups, feminists etc).

6. National Socialism had clout in the university system (yes even the esteemed philosopher Martin Heidegger was synpathetic to it it).
Whiteness theorists have clout in the current university system (especially departments of Education and the Humanities since the Gramscian Revolution)

7. National Socialists weren’t afraid to used violence to rattle the liberal establishment (Munich Putsch)
Whiteness advocates have used violence to rattle the liberal establishment (the Cornell cafeteria takeover comes to mind).

8. National Socialists champion group rights over individual rights.
Whiteness Theorists champion group rights over individual rights.

9. National Socialists are utopic in their ultimate vision.
Whiteness theorists are utopic in their ultimate vision

10. National Socialists often se emotion as a weapon against reason.
Whiteness theorists often use emotion as a weapon against reason.

11. National Socialism is willing to ignore the genetic evidence against race.
Whiteness Theory is willing to ignore the genetic evidence against race.
Both are of course wedded to pseudo-scientific idealism.

12. National Socialists disdain Western traditions and Judeo-Christian values.
Whiteness theorists disdain Western traditions and Judeo-Christian values.

13. National Socialism have fringe cultural myths lurking at their periphery (eg. Teutonic Pagan legends).
Whiteness theorists have fringe cultural myths lutking at their periphery (eg. Afrocentrism).

14. National Socialism is Hegelian in that it believes in the march of history toward a specific end.
Whiteness theorists believe that they too are in line with the overall march of history to a specific end.

15. National Socialists were willing to exploit an apparent weakness of liberalism to take power (the Nazis made use of the German electoral system).
Whiteness theorists are willing to exploit an apparent weakness of liberalism for empowerment (that weakness is our sense of fairness and equality…even though I believe that this is not an ideal that we should ever surrender).

16. National Socialism is obsessed with power (a belief derived from its intellectual supremo Friederich Nietzche – although Nietzche himself would probably have disdained Nazism )
Whiteness Theory is obsessed with power (a belief derived from its intellectual supremo Michel Foucalt).

17. National Socialists justified their actions as a reaction against oppression (eg. breaking the shackles of Versailles )
Whiteness theorists consistently justify their action as a reaction against oppression (destroying white domination)

18. National Socialists guilted the Western liberal establishment into acquiescing to their demands (Policy of Appeasement).
Whiteness theorists play the guilt card as well especially in dealing with university administrations who have allowed these advocates to take over higher education courses and turn them into indoctrination workshops.

19. National Socialism has a central Sorelian myth at its core: ie. The stifling of the Will of the German People by the Jews and their allies.
Whiteness Theory has a central Sorelian myth at its core: ie. The Social Construct of Race by Whites.

20. National Socialists were intolerant to criticism of the ideology (the Brown shirts were notorious for breaking up opposition Party rallies)
Whiteness Theorists are no slouches either with respect to silencing opposition to their ideology (bring a conservative speaker to campus such as David Horowitz or Shelby Steele and you will see what I mean….).

There are probably more than these twenty....I'll let you think about it.

Thursday, February 05, 2009

The York University Strike

I posted this on the York University Education bulletin board here in Toronto. The responses were surprisngly positive (despite the leftist bias that exists)...I believe it can apply to many a North American university in one form or another....

York University is the epitome of a bloated institution. It has grown rapidly into Canada’s third largest university by admitting students who would ordinarily never even be considered for admission by Canada’s more prestigious bastions of higher learning: U of T, Waterloo, McMaster etc. The chief reason behind such an admission policy was/is to increase revenue while at the same time elevating the university as a power bloc within Canada’s world of higher education. However this has come at a price. With only a limited amount of tenured spots and other regular full-time positions the university has become more reliant on contract workers and teaching assistants whose numbers have reached a critical mass.

Place this in the context of an environment that fosters entitlement (especially such out dated notions as job security…) and labour dispute are an obvious outcome. This of course puts the university into a bind.

It can downsize, eliminate courses and throttle back admissions….. but it won’t…it loves the student revenue for one. Also if it had to cut back on courses - and contract workers as a consequence - this would most likely manifest itself in the humanities and social science fields where the university is particularly well stocked.

However no university official would dare touch the myriad of cultural study courses and ideologically derived re-education workshops that dominate the Humanities/Social Science (where much of the ‘bloat’ resides) for fear of being labeled with the stigma of racism, sexism, homophobia etc…….. the all too powerful smear tool of the political left that seems to dominate campus politics at York.

Restricting admission to the science, business and professional (SBP) study spheres are a no-go as well. The university has to its credit made considerable effort to grow these areas (for one the new President himself is eager to establish a Medical School at York) and their success is most directly linked to the status of the university as an academic institution. Besides private sector donations (which are critical for research funding) are largely associated with the SBP programs. These would likely dry up if it appeared that the university was backtracking on such initiatives.
However the system is not sustainable. Something has to give.

I personally believe that the university should downsize, cut the fat and go with a policy of less is more…

Who then is to blame for this particular strike? Answer both sides. The university for failing to exercise the tough love that would alleviate the deleterious consequences of its ongoing policies and the union for only thinking about its own personal consequences….Who then are the victims? Answer: The thousands of students who lost 11 weeks of education.

Sunday, February 01, 2009

Well Reds

I have always been a big English Football supporter although this year my enthusiasm for the game has waned a bit. I am not sure why this is the case but I suspect its a combination of the poor quality of football on hand (too much defensive play by the likes of Everton, Fulham, Wigan, Stoke etc), the nauseating sight of Manchester United winning more matches or perhaps its just that I have finally grown up and changed my priorities (no it can't be...can it?).

Nevertheless I have to take some consolation with respect to Liverpool's (the team I have supported since boyhood) 2-0 win over Chelsea. The Reds badly needed a result after a string of draws and have now moved into second place ahead of the Blues but behind the Devils. Fernando Torres struck late with two goals to do the damage and it was great not to have another game where Liverpool squandered the points in the twilight of the match. Although my heart wants Liverpool to win the EPL I suspect that its going to be a tall order to dethrone United whose back line seem unbeatable. Neveretheless the season is far from over with 14 or so games left to play. I will take each game in stride, curse when we lose or draw and do cartwheels when we win...but above all maintain my overall composure.....