27 June 2009

Yesterday's Beauty is Now No More

1970s sex icon Farrah Fawcett, 1947-2009, died on Thursday, June 25 in Los Angeles of rectal cancer.

20 June 2009

"Call me Senator. Call me Cougar. Just Call me! I Love a Man in Uniform!"


"Call me Senator, Damn It!"

"Call me Senator, Damn You!"

Graphic source: http://www.plidesign.co.uk

Bitchy Boxer and the Napoleonic Complex

At four feet, six inches, the putative senator from the putatively golden state is perhaps the shortest thing to have sat in the United States Senate. So it's no wonder that she publicly demonstrated her Napoleonic complex -- a sense of inferiority resulting in self-hate arising out of short stature -- against a general in the armed forces of the United States of America. Madam Boxer chided the general for referring to her as "Mam" in a Senate hearing. Last I checked, "mam" and "sir" are terms of respect frequently used -- in fact ingrained -- in the military. Even as a civilian, I use these terms all the time in addressing my customers -- even the ones with the toothless grins, who are clearly beneath my intellectual and socio-economic standing.

Madam Boxer publicly yelled at the general because she's insecure about her short stature. Insecure people often lash out against people of strength and power if they are in the position to do so, as in this case of Madam Boxer. This short but girthy thing really needs therapy.

Moreover, the putative senator is a Marin County illiberal, and as we all know too well, illiberals despise the military. There were many instances in San Francisco, in the early 2000s, of illiberals' holding impromptu parties celebrating the beheading of US servicemen.

This incident involving Madam Boxer further underscores the thesis that illiberals are the meanest people in the world, notwithstanding their knee-jerk mantra of "doing it for the children."

How prescient we were when we named Madam Boxer (she prefers it pronounced "Boo-Cher") one of the "'hos of state" in 2006.

-- Jonathan Fairbank, Editor-in-Chief

15 June 2009

The Art of the Whisper

I have been in government "work" for almost 15 years now. And in every posting that I have undertaken, cubicle-dwelling bureaucrats have perfected that scornful art of the whisper -- be it the long hours of whispering conversations over the phone or the secretive whispers among fellow fat bureaucrats over the water cooler.

I have tried whispering over the phone, but my conversation partners almost always could not understand me. How do these fat, lazy government bureaucrats do it?!! I swear there was this one black woman who would whisper-talk over the phone for hours, and I could not make out what the heck she talked about -- not even one sentence. The ways of the bureaucrats!

--Jon Dunne.

07 June 2009

"Singapore Math" to Liberate the Mormon State

Education under scrutiny: Poor scores on basic skills test cited

Published: Saturday, June 6, 2009 12:21 a.m. MDT

Poor math scores on the Utah Basic Skills Competency Test is just one more reason why the state should be doing Singapore math, said Sen. Howard Stephenson, R-Draper.

"I believe we need to give incentives for schools and school districts to improve math instruction," Stephenson told the Deseret News, shortly after the State Office of Education announced UBSCT scores Friday.

Stephenson chaired the task force that resulted in legislation to require the state education office to create the test.

A total 82 percent of the class of 2009 passed all three segments of the test. Students must pass the test before graduation or face receiving a diploma which indicates they did not pass the exam. Starting in February of their sophomore year, students have five chances to pass all three categories of the test: reading, writing and math.

Statewide, 92 percent of students passed in reading; 89 percent passed in writing; and 85 percent passed in math.

Stephenson said he or another lawmaker will resurrect a Singapore math bill, which didn't make it through the 2009 legislative session. The bill would have allowed a few schools to apply for a grant to launch Singapore math, a method in which students learn mastery of core concepts and then move on to solving problems by applying that knowledge. The curriculum is extremely visual and involves word problems.

In southeast Asia's Singapore, students consistently test No. 1 internationally in math.

There were definitely "significant roadblocks" in the state test scores due to lack of math skills, said John Jesse, director of assessment for the state office of education. Nearly 6 percent of the students didn't pass the test fell short because of their inability to clear the math segment.

"The message is clear," he said.

Regarding the overall 82 percent of students passing the test, Jesse said, "it seems good and it is good — unless your student, or you, are one of the 18 percent that didn't pass."

The number is up 80 percent from the class of 2008.

Garfield School District had a 100 percent pass rate this year, due to continuous student preparation in language arts and math, starting in the seventh grade, since 2005.

"We're ecstatic. The students worked hard to get there," Vicki Ahlstrom told the Deseret News on Friday. She is a Garfield district testing coordinator. The district has an enrollment of 911 students, with 99 seniors.

Statewide, the class of 2010 is already off to a great start with the test. A total of 78 percent have already passed all three categories of the test. A total of 66 percent of the class of 2011 have passed all of the exam.

Test data revealed differences in scores due to demographics.

Eighty percent of female students passed the test, while 76 percent of male students passed. Boys and girls did about the same on math, with girls scoring less than a percentage point higher. Female students scored 4 percent higher than male students in reading, and 9 percent higher than boys in writing.

A total 82 percent of Asian students passed the test, while 49 percent of Hispanic students passed. A total of 83 percent of Caucasian students passed.

For more information, go to www.schools.utah.gov/PR/UBSCT_2009.pdf.

04 June 2009

Holy Boat People!!! Miss Vietnam Bikini International

Her name is Huynh Thanh Tuyen. And she's Vietnam's sole entry in the international bikini/beauty contest. Why the heck did my parents risk our lives on a rickety boat to leave a country that produced this hottie??

At a time when Asian beauties mainly come rich countries such as China, Japan, Korea or North America, Miss Huynh is a delightful surprise. Her family must be receiving lots of remittances from Westminster, CA :-)

--Nguyen Ai Quoc