Labor

Great L.A. Child Shortage Solves Class-Size "Problem"

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Robert Putnam's next book: "Swinging Alone"

Why are teachers unions warning about expanding class sizes even though the child population is declining in Los Angeles and other parts of California? The Golden State has a history of hawkishness on class size, but the intuition that class size strongly influences learning outcomes is not well supported by evidence.  

Every one of these is the nicest car on the lot.

"Class size is the most expensive, least effective intervention you can make in our education system," said Marc S. Tucker, president of the National Center on Education and the Economy, back in Aught-Six. This month, the Brown Center on Education Policy at Brookings seconded that counterintuition: "Class-size reduction has been shown to work for some students in some grades in some states and countries," says a Brown Center study [pdf], "but its impact has been found to be mixed or not discernable in other settings and circumstances that seem similar. It is very expensive."

These assertions are far enough outside mainstream discussion that Los Angeles public school teachers still speak broadly about class size and student/teacher ratios – as my buddy does (with some alarming math) at the 1:55 mark in this Reason TV video: 

Even if we posited the primacy of class size in edumuckation, the fact remains that class size is, at worst, flat over the last decade.

Can you find the child?

Education Data Partnership indicates Los Angeles class sizes declined for at least three straight years through 2009, leaving per-class population below where it was in 2000. The California Department of Education shows the L.A. Unified School District's student/teacher ratio inching from 21.4 in 2006 down to 21.3 in 2010. Despite these trends, the not-enough-teachers story is one of journalism's enduring evergreens

Caveat: Average class size numbers can be deceptive. There are grade-level mandates on student/teacher ratios in California, and while the general trend is that class sizes increase in higher grade levels, there are plenty of exceptions. But one part of the class-size equation – the overall number of students in the system – continues to get smaller. 

Chirp, chirp.

(Disclosure: My experience of LAUSD is that "open enrollment," a magical system in which you can take advantage when a more attractive school fails to meet its student population numbers, makes for a more usable school system than the district's horrific reputation and parent price tag of $0.00 led me to expect.) 

Why are student numbers shrinking? Los Angeles County's declining child population has been a low-wattage news story for some time. These photos from a nearly empty carnival that blocked my route home yesterday illustrate the plain numbers. The child-shortage scare has gone through various iterations. At one point it was described only as a decline in minority children, but now the breathless phrase of choice is "mass exodus of young children."  

If you can look at the camera with a confident smile, you can still make it in L.A.

Could that have anything to do with a broader exodus from L.A.? In this disturbingly chirpy blog post, County Geographic Information Officer Mark Greninger notes that overall L.A. population is flat or barely higher over the past decade. 

I find it hard to get exercised over contemporary class size figures, which are below my own student/teacher experience in the days of hornbooks and slide rules. I didn't go to school in California, however, and it's not easy to get historical class size data for the state.

The panic over class size, on the other hand, has been going on for many years. Here's a 1996 study [pdf] making the strangely familiar claim that the Golden State ranks 49th or 50th nationwide. 

"Carnival" by Edward Hopper.

If the declining population trend turns out to be real, it will be something new in L.A. County history. There's still some truth to the belief that a new crop of starry-eyed youngsters gets off the bus every day in Hollywood, but inbound migration may not save L.A. this time, because U.S. geographical mobility continues to fall. According to the Census Bureau, American mobility is more than a full percentage point lower than it was when Alison Stein Wellner's Reason story "The Mobility Myth" came out in 2006. 

But a falling population does mean fewer students in schools. Even teachers can't lie about that. The two myths of class size – that it correlates negatively with student achievement and that classes are getting bigger – need to be retired. 

NEXT: What Does the SWAT Marine Data Dump Prove?

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  1. Abort the little bastards!

    1. Who’s with me on making 100th trimester terminations legal?!

  2. Lets see. Teachers unions destroy the quality of LA schools and get crushing taxes to pay their inflated salaries. This causes parents to flee the city reducing the need for said teachers. Karma anyone?

    1. If I may edit your statement?

      Teachers unions destroy the quality of LA schools and get crushing taxes to pay their inflated salaries, while staging walkouts, angry protests, and mass demonstrations encouraging civil unrest, such as in Wisconsin, whenever they are treated like their crap actually stinks. This causes parents to flee the city reducing the need for said teachers.

      Sorry about that, amigo. Your thoughts were right on, but I felt like we needed to mention their attitude towards the parents who pay their salaries and have been seeing diminishing returns out of these idiots for the last 40 years.

  3. http://www.theatlantic.com/bus…..ts/239593/

    Speaking of unions, interesting article from Mrs Sullivan over at the Atlantic on how products liability plaintiffs got screwed in the auto bailout. There was a time not too long ago when the Democratic Party was the party of plaintiffs. Now, there appears to be no one they won’t screw to satisify the unions.

    1. I saw that story somewhere yesterday or the day before, and wanted to pass it on to Reason, but then I thought, “too far.”

      Yeah, they detailed an interesting case where a woman already had a judgement on her settlement from Chrysler after her airbag failed to deply in an accident.

      In came the Obama administration, and *poof*, they put “Chrysler and its employees” ahead of its greedy, unscrupulous creditors.

    2. If only the party of tort reform could have saved these plaintiffs!

      But it is interesting to read the article carefully. It’s not that the plaintiffs were screwed, they were unsecured creditors and, under the bankruptcy laws that everyone here heralded and defended and I criticized in debates over this, they got the unsecured treatment. It’s just that they didn’t get protected like the union pension did!

      1. From the article: “This is not some dire machination of the Obama administration; people who win lawsuits are creditors of the corporation, just like bondholders and suppliers, and they have to stand in line for what’s left over when the corporation declares bankruptcy.”

        Even if the auto makers had legal rights to leave behind product-liability claims, “there is a deep unfairness,” he said. “It would have been easy enough to set something aside for them.”

        See, this article is complaining that the administration DIDN’T carve out a special protection for the plaintiffs, a special protection that John et al., would of course decried as they decried the special protection for the unions! So John et al., should be APPLAUDING the move not to set aside the usual rules for plaintiffs, well, that is if he had carefully understood the article and was looking for something other than just castigating the Obama administration.

        John, if you’re not going to use that egg on your face can I use it to bake a cake?

        1. But they did carve out special protections for unions, but they wouldn’t for people who were injured by the products. Yeah, I think carving out special protection for people who were injured would not have been a bad thing.

          And no I wouldn’t have complained about it. It is pretty hard to say you should screw the parapalegic in the corner.

          MNG, if you are going to argue, please argue with me, not the imaginary voice that lives in your head.

          1. Well, no. They need to follow the rules of bankruptcy laws and not let politicians, such as Obama, make up their own rules to benefit politically powerful allies or people who manage to get photo ops to drum up sympathy.

            Unless you think freezing business investment because no one knows what stunt the government will pull next — you know, part of what caused the Great Depression — is a good idea.

            1. Yeah, not guessing what the government would do next caused the Great Depression, not the Stock Market Crash and such.

              In prole’s world of causation the time order is reversed, the government response, which came after the poor economy, caused the thing which it was a response to!

              1. The stock market crash caused an economic downturn. Hoover’s and Roosevelt’s unprecedented attempts to fix the economy, rather than let the economy heal itself made that downturn “great”.

                Apparentyly, MNG is unfamiliar with the notion that you can make a bad situation worse.

        2. . It’s just that they didn’t get protected like the union pension did!

          Yeah. That is point dipshit. If they were going to start passing out favors, perhaps they should have passed out a favor to someone who didnt’ give them millions of dollars but you know were deserving.

          Also, had the unions not gotten their special favors, there would have been more money for the unsecured creditors. They got less money for their claims thanks to the Obama administration ensuring that the unions got theirs. No, they wouldn’t have got a 100 percent under the bankruptcy laws. but they would have gotten more, had the Unions not been given favorable treatment.

          It is amazing how you lose your ability to read. You are not a stupid person. You just have these prime directives. One of them is Unions are never wrong and never do any harm. Another of them is Obama is always good and never does any harm. So this was like a double prime directive and completely shut down your ability to think rationally.

          1. There would have been more money first for the secured creditors, then the unions and plaintiffs would have been in the same line behind the secured creditors. When they protected the unions they screwed secured creditors, as was the bitch on H&R (won’t somebody think of the secured creditors!).

            1. You have no idea what you are talking about. The secured creditors don’t get in line. They have security. Once they take back their security, any claim they have left over becomes an unsecured claim.

              1. John-
                They don’t get in line, they are at the front of the line. A bankrupt entity cannot pay all of its creditors. The secured creditors don’t always get their security btw*, and creditors have to ‘get in line’ in the sense that some are preferred over others in divying up what is there to pay creditors.

                *secured holders got 29 cents on the dollar with Chrysler

                http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/C…..ganization

      2. They opened themselves up to these sorts of criticisms by intervening in a process that doesn’t usually involve the executive.

  4. Make that MRS Sudderman.

  5. My entire grade school existence was learning in vast lecture halls. We were faceless little souls whose lessons were droned to them. They couldn’t be bothered with personal attention or lesson tailoring. I don’t think most of them even knew my name.

    But then again, I was homeschooled, so my experience might be different than most.

    1. ^^Must be MORMON or CATHOLIC^^

    2. homeschooled
      Is that what they call ‘juvie hall’?

      1. I am glad someone got the joke.

  6. Have you ever MET a teacher? How many have you met that you thought were smarter than you? I mean, when you think objectively.

    I had 2 when I was in high school that fit the bill. 2.

    How is it that college profs can teach a classroom of 300 kids but a highschool teacher can’t handle 30?

    Also, what is the problem with diversity in education styles, with competition amongst them? Stuff like this makes me want to run there and open a private school, but who’s got the money when you pay for the public if your kid goes or not- or if you don’t even have a kid.

    1. How is it that college profs can teach a classroom of 300 kids but a highschool teacher can’t handle 30?

      Graders and TAs.

      Though even then there are more than 30 students per person in a teaching position.

      1. I have taught classes of 60+ without graders.

        You’d think the students would appreciate the way I stayed up until four in the morning to get their first exam back in time for no-penalty drops and their second exam back to them on the withdraw deadline.

        But they didn’t.

        And even the one well on the way to failure didn’t take advantage of the feedback.

        ::sigh::

        1. The trick is to give them all F’s, which makes the grading job much easier.

      2. Where I taught, the University of Kentucky, most TAs in our department taught 2 classes of 22 students.

        A total of 44 students which includes 2 different preps and a shitload of papers to grade and comment on intelligently.

        I would rather of had all 44 students in one class as that would have reduced the amount of prep time and actual classroom time as my classes were 4 days a week.

        I can guarantee that my students would have been just as prepared.

    2. We don’t really “handle” them. We just tell ones who are being disruptive to GTFO. And the students who are totally disinterested stop showing up after a couple of weeks anyway, and then they flunk out. Problem solved.

      Schools would improve a lot if teachers just had the authority to get rid of disruptive students.

    3. Because in college, if you don’t want to be there you don’t have to be. There never needs to be a rule against disruptive behavior in college.

  7. Here’s an enlightened comment from PZ Myer’s Pharyngula blog that explains why education is so goddamned important…BECAUSE AMERICANS (“Usanians”?) ARE IRREPARABLY STUPID THANKS TO FOX NEWS!!!!

    “Progress is not something that is linear and inevitable.
    USA clearly shows this by going backwards with big strides in civic rights, scientific literacy, financial responsibility and everything else you can think of.
    I fear that decades’ poor education and the rotting influence of such political organizations as Fox News have irreparably damaged US.
    The critical mass of sufficiently educated people simply doesn’t exist anymore on US, the bizarre and consistent reelections of republicans shows this.
    Most Usanians have become so dumb that in effect they have less short term memory than fish and reasoning skills that don’t go beyond their own daily survival.”

    1. I used to read Myers’ blog before it was a part of Science Blogs; comments like that chased me away.

      There are some great bloggers at SB, but the commentariat is essentially a college-educated, liberal version of Freepers.

      1. Well, it looks like someone had the intellectual courage to call the commenter out on his/her idiocy:

        “Segmentum, would you please explain how the US is less scientifically literate or how it has fewer civil rights than it did in the 1960s? Maybe the US doesn’t fit the ideal you had set for it, but it’s quite dishonest to claim there’s been any net movement backward in these areas.”

        Unfortunately, another commenter felt the need to respond:

        “Segmentum, would you please explain how the US is less scientifically literate or how it has fewer civil rights than it did in the 1960s?
        Ooh.. I’ll field this one. See, its not what we do have that is the issue, its what some people are still striving for. What has been eroded now they want to erode further, and I am sure you can find some things that where legal in the 60s, which are less so now, even as some others have stuck, mostly depending on whether they where obvious enough to everyone that anyone bothered to protect them, while fighting erosion of other areas. As for less literate.. Hell yes. In the 60s, and before, there was a general sense that everyone could benefit from knowing “something” about science, a near entire focus on the idea that we should explore its limits, etc. Somewhere around the 70s people figured out that it was more complicated that all the “The Future is Now” shows kept claiming, or worse, some things where not practical, others maybe no possible, and still others where nothing like predicted, and what *did* improve tended to be things that didn’t requite the general public think so much. It just worked, sort of. Except for Phone Freaks, and the like, most people didn’t give a crap how Ma Bell worked, or how and ATM worked, or how a computer worked, etc. They either badly overestimated what was possible, or badly misunderstood what you could do with the technology, thus either being scared to death of it, or seeing it as completely worthless.
        This attitude has only gotten worse, in some respects, with people trying to control and lock down things like the internet, or ban some things all together. Its not that hard, on occasion, when listening to some politicians, preachers, and other control freaks, to imagine them trying the same thing with the US internet access as China does with theirs. Hell, in some states, you can get online things you can’t buy legally in stores, and often, you can’t have *some* of those things even shipped into the state. You honestly think, if they had the slightest chance, these same idiots wouldn’t lock down the internet, so you couldn’t even view/shop for such products in the first place?
        For that matter, how many Republicans, if it wasn’t unpatriotic, or they could find a valid excuse to do so, wouldn’t block nearly every news source, except Fox, from TVs, or the net?
        Idiocy is rampant in the US, with half the country thinking that the Cell Phones they use work by magic fairy dust, and the other half are a mix of people that don’t care, and a small minority that know damn well how they work, and, because of that, despise every Cell company in the country, because we have crap services, and like all the mini-Bells, when they took over, we get charged for every stupid ass thing the phone can do, when half the shit wouldn’t even cost the company anything to **leave on**.
        Things like paying for Caller ID was just flat idiotic, even with it was with the regular phone company, yet, for a while, they charged for it. Why was it idiotic? Because, the phone system sends out an ID, to the exchange, which identifies who is calling you, and all the exchange has to do is pass that data one step farther, out of band, to the phone you are using. You might transmit that data 10 times, to get connected, through the network, but.. the other idiot being charged for it, since its a *basic* part of how the network functions properly, is the moron at the end of the line, i.e., you. Well, at least until they stopped charging for it… lol
        Guess what? Cell systems work the same frakking way. No, actually probably worse than that. It would be like your ISP charging you for allowing you to go to a dos prompt and type “ping yahoo.com”, or, if you have linux, or a program installed under Windows that can do it, “whois yahoo.com”, because “ping” tells you the destination IP, and “whois” looks up the owner information (i.e., caller ID). Yet, we put up with this stupid BS, because *they* claim it would cost them money to provide it, and 90% of the people that own cell phones believe them. You wouldn’t get by with even making the claim in a lot of other countries.
        We have turned into a nation of idiots, who don’t know how *anything* works, so can’t do anything but whine, if it breaks, even if the damn problem is, to the 10% that have a clue, nothing more than a loose wire. We have gone from dreaming of space travel, to complaining that the DMV manual insists we know what a turn signal is, because its too hard to remember to use one (seriously, people in Arizona seem to have some sort of disease where they can’t figure out what the hell the switch is for, or something).
        Yeah, I would say that “general” tech literacy has dropped in the US, even without talking about “scientific literacy” in general.”

        1. OUR STANDING IN THE WORLD WILL BE JUDGED ON HOW WELL WE UNDERSTAND CALLER ID!!!!

        2. Jesus Christ, what a bunch of navel-gazing bullshit. Before the days of the internet, this dude would have been doing bong hits and listening to Bob Marley records and we would have been better off for it.

          Still, I give him points for actually using the word “Republicans” instead of “RETHUGLICANS!!!!1! OMG!!!!”

          1. You know, I feel kinda dizzy after reading those comments.

        3. What the fucking fuck?!

          1. Translation? Herc, babe, help us out.

        4. “Things like paying for Caller ID was just flat idiotic, [with following bullshit]”

          This ignoramus would probably argue for free phone service, since the marginal cost of adding one more phone number is essentially zero.
          “I’ll field this one” is the reason techies aren’t CEOs.

          1. Jeezus-titty-fucking-Christ, I knew liberals thought that Americans were evil…BUT FUCKING CALLER ID?! I mean, WHAT THE FUCK?!

          2. Well i don’t know if the commenter was saying it or not but back in the day i remember getting auto charged for caller ID then when i asked not to be charged for it they charged me to take it off.

            It was pretty fucking lame.

            Of course I don’t have land line any more so there is that.

        5. Things like paying for Caller ID was just flat idiotic, even with it was with the regular phone company, yet, for a while, they charged for it. Why was it idiotic? Because, the phone system sends out an ID, to the exchange, which identifies who is calling you, and all the exchange has to do is pass that data one step farther, out of band, to the phone you are using.

          Now for the reason why this guy is an idiot. “For a while, they charged for it” because the “the phone system sends out an ID, to the exchange” on a separate signaling channel which was a separate system. The separate system (ANI – automatic number identification) was for billing purposes. The switching system did the actual call setup and termination which resulted in some creative free long distance call hacking. If you could create an ANI failure (it was done) on a long distance call the call would still get routed but the ANI billing system would never know.

          To actually pass the phone number from ANI to the switch for caller ID required an increase in processing power and bandwidth for the communications channel between the switch and ANI.

        6. This attitude has only gotten worse, in some respects, with people trying to control and lock down things like the internet, or ban some things all together. Its not that hard, on occasion, when listening to some politicians, preachers, and other control freaks, to imagine them trying the same thing with the US internet access as China does with theirs. Hell, in some states, you can get online things you can’t buy legally in stores, and often, you can’t have *some* of those things even shipped into the state. You honestly think, if they had the slightest chance, these same idiots wouldn’t lock down the internet, so you couldn’t even view/shop for such products in the first place?

          I felt brain cells die after reading this. Save bandwidth. Just call people Luddites.

    2. Geez. Whoever wrote that should have gone to school.

      1. Whoever wrote that should have gone to school
        In smaller class sizes? 😉

    3. The liberal fixation on Fox News is just bizzare. They just can’t handle the idea that there could be any media not actively engaging liberal brainwashing. Just don’t watch the damned thing if you hate it that much. Is that so hard?

      1. You know, Pharyngula hasn’t been my cup of tea since the earliest days of my atheism when I was WAY more liberal. But I’ve continued to read just ‘cuz I like to read differing opinions on various topics, and one thing you can’t say about PZ Myers is that he holds back with his opinions.

        However, a search of the word “libertarian” on the Pharyngula site will quickly pull-up some of the smarmiest, most dishonest commentary on the libertarian philosophy.

        Now, I much prefer “Dispatches from the Culture Wars”. Ed Brayton’s a pretty strong Lefty, but he’s quite willing to give libertarians an honest shake…He’s a HUGE Balko fan!

        1. I read Brayton’s blog regularly; he definitely has some Libertarian tendencies, but I don’t think he indulges them much on his blog for fear of alienating his audience.

          On more than one occasion Brayton has been highly critical of European laws criminalizing Holocaust denial. A commenter once said he didn’t understand the whole fascination and enshrinement of free speech; if it makes people feel better to criminalize unpopular opinions, where’s the harm?

          1. My favorite PZ Myers hypocrisy was when he blasted an anonymous reader for subscribing him to Reason, which Myers said was filled with a “thick fecal sludge of libertarianism”. But then Myers later linked to Ron Bailey’s scathing review of “Expelled” on Reason.com in a post that seemed to indicate his high regard for Bailey’s opinion.

    4. “The critical mass of sufficiently educated people simply doesn’t exist anymore”

      I’d have to argue its the other way around. We’ve surpassed the critical mass of educated people that it is now making the US more retarded. There’s too many dumbfucks who have been educated, and they think their education somehow makes them capable of comprehending how the world actually works. Having an education does not equal intelligence if your brain does not have the capacity for independent thought.

  8. These photos from a nearly empty carnival that blocked my route home yesterday…. So you stopped to take pictures of children?
    Ewwwweeeeeeeeeeee

    1. BTW Tim, “Pedophilia” is the spelling in American English. “Paedophilia” is the spelling in British English

      http://rctlfy.wordpress.com/20…..totlogast/

    2. isn’t that a crime now?

      1. editing quoted English spelling from a British newspaper?
        Hell, yes

  9. Why are student numbers shrinking? Los Angeles County’s declining child population has been a low-wattage news story for some time.

    I remember a few years ago a local story where the reporter was handwringing over declining student populations in the city of Seattle and all the education problems this would cause. I wrote her a note showing her that without spending a dollar or hiring one extra teacher we were fixing the class size problem.

    I can’t remember exactly what she wrote back, but it was basically some pissy tract about how that was the worst way to ‘decrease class size’.

    1. So she didn’t mind large classes.. The dishonest bitch just wanted more teachers.

      1. Of course. If the gov’t doesn’t create jobs (and they are for the children) then who will?!

    2. Children are put on Earth so that government teachers and bureaucrats can have jobs. So if they are not in government schools then they are worthless.

    3. The Mexicans are eating them!

  10. Hey,

    Tim Cavanaugh- why are you denying the very REAL existence of the Pied Piper who is responsible for this! You blame a mass exodus, but the Pied Piper has done it before.

    Just go ASK the people of Hamlelin. It’s called JOURNALISM, Tim. Try is sometime!

  11. “but the intuition that class size strongly influences learning outcomes is not well supported by evidence”

    Do tell?

    http://www2.ed.gov/pubs/Reduci….._size.html

      1. I call BS on those studies. First, outdated. Second, you MUST take external factors into this, as well as individual talents of students. You cannot scientifically repeat the results with the same kids- simply due to the nature of what one is testing.

        So, BS.

      2. STAR is well known. But it found that the advantages only existed in early grades.

        As school system budgets tighten, more journalists find themselves writing about?and misinterpreting the research on?class size. Nearly every education writer knows about Project STAR, the only large-scale, random-assignment experiment that has been conducted on class size. Over four years in the late 1980s in Tennessee, researchers assigned children in 79 schools to classrooms ranging from 13 to 25 students. They found significant academic advantages in reading and math for students in small kindergarten and first-grade classes, and the effects diminished in second and third grades.

        http://www.educatedreporter.co…..-says.html

        STAR was a one shot deal. There isn’t that kind of data for other grades.

      3. Also there are tradeoffs for reducing class size. More money spent for more teachers means less money to spend on other things. Further, there are only so many good teachers out there. As you reduce class size you by neccessity reduce the number of students that have access to those teachers.

        Certainly, at some point a teacher’s effectiveness starts to decline when the class gets too large. But what that point is will depend on a lot of factors, not the least of which is the teacher. Some teachers may do better than others in a large class. There is no data out there to show what the ideal class size is. And since the ideal depends so much on specific factors, we are unlikely to get it.

        As it is, the movement to reduce class size is nothing but union feather bedding. People act like there is never any downside to reducing class size. There is in that namely you reduce access to good teachers. For example, take the great Jamie Escalante. The guy who taught calculus for so many years and they made the movie Stand and Deliver about. If you had reduced class sizes in his school, you would just reduce the number of kids who have access to his class.

        1. I was making a sarcastic comment mirroring what teachers argue against standardized testing…

        2. That could work both ways, if everyone in the school was in his class at one time would it have worked out well?

          STAR was, as you said, one of the few truly randomized studies on the subject, and it demonstrated the common sense effect. As to the dated claim made by Spencer, check out the recent work covered by Richard E. Nisbett in Intelligence and How to Get It: Why Schools and Culture Count.

    1. From the link:
      “The significant effects of class size reduction on student achievement appear when class size is reduced to a point somewhere between 15 and 20 students, and continue to increase as class size approaches the situation of a 1-to-1 tutorial.”

      Sounds like an ad for home-schooling.

  12. Is Cavanaugh wearing clip-ons?

    1. This type?
      Did one of you bastards steal my idea already?

        1. I’ve never met a reactive Gryllidae; you must be male

  13. I see this as a good thing. It should be considered child abuse if you raise children in LA County. Attempted murder if you send them to LAUSD.

  14. THE PURE JEWISH STATE ? The Holocaust of non Jewish religious sites

    [The Last days of the Dome of the Rock]

    Now, the fact of the matter is that the American-Israeli Military Industrial Complex ? the [EMPIRE] is made up of two parts the Pure Jewish Theocratic State, from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea, the Nile to the Euphrates, made up of only those of Pure Jewish Blood, a state of Pure Theocratic Zionism, and those living in the [EMPIRE], the Plutocracy of Hypocrisy, a form of government where power effectively rests with a small elite segment of society distinguished by wealth. It’s the biggest con ever perpetrated upon a people in history, basically controlled by [AIPAC/AZC] the American Israeli Political Action Committee / American Zionist Committee. And they are tide together by an Iron Clad, Unbreakable, union of [SPECIAL RELATIONSHIP], so they are two peas in the same pod, and as such must both be held responsible for the Holocaust of non Jewish religious sites that must be expected with the final solution to the problem of those of non-Jewish Pure Blood within the Pure Jewish State. What do you mean the by the Holocaust upon non Jewish religious sites? The Dome of the Rock as it is widely know a monument of structural architectural style and beauty, will be torn down an replaced by the New Jewish. Temple, to say it won’t be is simply a pipe dream; the days of the Dome of the Rock are numbered.
    [Pure Theocratic State Religions]
    This in turn leads to other non Pure Jewish Religious Sites, in a Pure Theocratic Zionism State, as with any other Pure Theocratic State Religion; there can be no room for any other Religion as it undermines the State, this has been thru time immemorial on every continent on the face of the globe, any and all signs of deviance from the Pure True and singularly correct Religion of the State must be eradicated, without exception. This therefore must apply to the Pure Jewish Theocratic Zionist State. So, let’s put this in to words that everyone can understate, once the Jewish State has been established [ALL] non Jewish Religious Sites must be done away with within that State, this applies across the board, regardless of the religion. Otherwise the State risks its Purity, power, control, and authority. You are no longer talking about a non Secular State, basically a State without a singular State Religious Structure, but a Theocratic State that controls its citizens based upon after life punishment for crimes against that state after death, a State that in fact controls thru after death pain and suffering, for not being a Theocratic State Citizen, the State is the Religion, the Religion is the State, and the Citizens are its Subjects.
    [The Worst of both worlds]
    The Pure Jewish Theocratic State is becoming a reality under the protection of the [EMPIRE] via the Unbreakable, Iron Clad, Union of [SPECIAL RELATIONSHIP], controlled by [AIPAC/AZC] the American Israeli Political Action Committee / American Zionist Committee, it can not be touched, controlled or stopped, and either they act in support of each other or they both fall together, which means they must act with concern to all matters in a unified way, one supporting the other, one must back the acts of the other and both must be held to account as a singular unit. The Religion of Profit is tied to a Theocratic State for mutual benefit, power, and self interests, the worst of both worlds. And, to the question as if other Religious Structures outside the Pure Jewish Theocratic State will be destroyed, they would be held hostage to destruction, by that State and its protector, but not being within the boundaries of that State, would be of little or no concern to either State, but those within the Theocratic Pure State must and will be done away with, a Holocaust of non Pure Jewish Theocratic State Religious Sites.

    HERCULE TRIATHLON SAVINIEN

    1. We’re never going to survive unless we get a little crazy.

      1. but what happens when we get a LOT crazy? ^^

        1. Spencer, sometimes I don’t think you are a Texan
          More crazy = more fun

      2. That’s what Heidi said.

    2. Wow, what a coincidence. I was reading Darwin’s Decent of Man today. On page 162, it says Jews are the same stock as Arabs and not the same stock as Europeans.

      So, all those Anti-Zionists who say Jews are European colonizers are just ignorant fools who don’t believe in Darwin. 😉

      1. And if the Toba bottleneck is true, any one of us is only 2,500 generations separated from any other one of us.

        1. I don’t understand that logic.

      2. I think the prevailing theory today is that the Ashkenazim are from a Turkic tribe.

        1. Darwin classified the Ashkenazim as “Semitic”. I know that group includes Arabs. I think it includes Turks too.

      3. “ignorant fools who don’t believe in Darwin”

        If Darwin is correct why does Jedward exist?

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pXouSYabDig

        1. What does God need with a starship?

    3. [Yay!!] Herc!!!!

      Herc, I kept the bright light of square brackets aflame at H&R in your absence.

  15. In connection with this story, did I not also hear on the radio (the actual news reports) that birthrates among minority communities were dropping? If this is indeed true, I foresee a day, not too many years hence, when we’ll have to take a close look at the proportion of State funds that go to education. Maybe we’ll even seriously discuss the ide of separating church and State! Can’t wait!

    1. James Anderson Merritt|5.28.11 @ 7:30PM|#
      “In connection with this story, did I not also hear on the radio (the actual news reports) that birthrates among minority communities were dropping?”

      I hadn’t heard this recently, but any reading of US history would strongly suggest it.
      The anti-catholic discrimination of the early 20th century and a large part of the anti-black ditto of the mid-20th century was largely promoted (and probably in some degree caused) by the claim that ‘THEY’RE OUT-BREEDING US!’
      In both cases, the fertility rates tended toward the norm as both populations tended toward the norm in prosperity.

  16. The “average class size” means next to nothing for comparison purposes, since the definitions of “teacher”, “student,” and “class” are very plastic and can change tremendously. Anything that claims to make comparisons or study effects of class sizes has to be read carefully. Even longitudinal studies of the same district often use definitions that change over time.

  17. It’s the number of legal children that are declining. Illegals are still running rampant throughout all of CA.

    1. Well at least they’re not clogging up the schools then.

      1. The more ignorant and oppressed they are, the easier it is to get what you want from them.

        That’s why I oppose a path to citizenship.

        1. And it make ’em cheaper, too.

  18. BFF: Pakistan and China

    A beleaguered Pakistan Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani came back from Beijing a happy man last week, with a promise of 50 fighter jets and a Chinese warning to the US not to do an Abbottabad again. China’s unusually strong backing of Pakistan since the US raid on Osama bin Laden has ra ised questions on where what some analysts call the “ChiPak” alliance is going.

    A sign of this divide surfaced when Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Jiang Yu said on Tuesday she had ‘not heard of’ the Pakistan defence minister’s offer of a Chinese naval base at the strategic Gwadar port.

    But an editorial in the nationalist Global Times struck a different note: “If China is going to play an important role in the Asia-Pacific and on the international stage, as urged by the international community, it eventually will need to establish overseas military bases in cooperation with other countries.”

    I’m no interventionist, but I’m somewhat sympathetic to the interventionist argument that if we don’t dominate the world someone else will. In this case that’s turned on its head — it’s quite possible that our hyperinterventionism has helped the PRC enlarge its sphere of influence.

  19. Pakistan and China: BFFs

    A beleaguered Pakistan Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani came back from Beijing a happy man last week, with a promise of 50 fighter jets and a Chinese warning to the US not to do an Abbottabad again. China’s unusually strong backing of Pakistan since the US raid on Osama bin Laden has ra ised questions on where what some analysts call the “ChiPak” alliance is going.

    A sign of this divide surfaced when Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Jiang Yu said on Tuesday she had ‘not heard of’ the Pakistan defence minister’s offer of a Chinese naval base at the strategic Gwadar port.

    But an editorial in the nationalist Global Times struck a different note: “If China is going to play an important role in the Asia-Pacific and on the international stage, as urged by the international community, it eventually will need to establish overseas military bases in cooperation with other countries.”

    I’m no interventionist, but I am sympathetic to the concern that if we don’t dominate an area, someone else will. In this case we have that concern turned on its head; our hyperinterventionism may have increased our rival’s sphere of influence.

    1. Though I could see India begging the US to set up a base near Mumbai if that plan goes through.

      1. Good luck with that one. In the Indo-Pak metawar, we have been with Pakistan since the heart of the cold war. When the choice is between maintaining institutions of the past and respecting the logic of the present, the past wins every time.

      2. Not a chance. The Indian left couldn’t identify India’s actual national interest given two choices and three guesses.

    2. This is one of those ‘interesting times’ things.

      Gwadar is ‘strategic’ in the sense that it’s right off the Arabian sea at the edge of the Gulf of Oman (which makes it convenient to get to all of the major sea lanes right there)

      But it another sense it’s in the middle of nowhere, even by Pakistan standards. It’s also smack dab in the middle of a region (Balochistan) with (yet another) restive separatist movement – which also by the way, doesn’t care for being in Iran either, and has attacked govt facilities and people there as well. And with the recent attack on the Navy base in Karachi, I’m sure the Chinese are thrilled with the prospects of Pakistan providing their landward security.

      And that’s just at the operational level. The real interesting thing is what a close Pakistan China alliance would do to the long term dynamics of Xinjiang, filled as it is with Muslims and separatist sentiment. (though not necessarily in the same people)

      1. Looks like Selig Harrison of “the George Soros-funded Center for International Policy” is thinking along the same lines — and thinks the US should aid the Baluchis’ revolt so as to keep Gwadar out of Chinese hands.

        1. “Most important, it should aid the 6 million Baluch insurgents fighting for independence from Pakistan”

          Worst. Idea. Ever.

          But really, I’d love to see the ISI and the Chinese get together, it’s like seeing a jerk co-worker and the ex-wife you hate hooking up.

  20. I didn’t go to school in California, however, and it’s not easy to get historical class size data for the state.

    I went to public school in Southern California before the days of class size reduction. It was uniformly 30 kids per classroom from grade school through high school.

  21. “This month, the Brown Center on Education Policy at Brookings seconded that counterintuition: “Class-size reduction has been shown to work for some students in some grades in some states and countries”

    Now in the AGW debate the skeptics tell us that we can dismiss the results of the bulk of related research because 1. government funds most of it, 2. results favoring AGW support aggrandizing government are more likely to be rewarded with more grants and 3. therefore the self interested researcher gives the government what they want in order to get more grants fromt them.

    And yet here we have the results of a bunch of studies, many of which were likely done with government money and/or cooperation, which supposedly demonstrates results unfavorable to government aggrandizement.

    So skeptics, how did that happen? If governments tend to reward studies that support government aggrandizement and researchers tend to give governments results they want to get more support, why did that not happen here?

    Conspiracy theorists are fun to play with!

    1. “Conspiracy theorists are fun to play with!”
      By comparison, your sophistry is boring.

      1. Shorter sevo

        “I have no answers, but insults a-plenty!”

        1. Cite a study done *by a teacher’s union* which calls for fewer, or less pay for, teachers.

    2. is to be somewhat skeptical of all of it, even if it supports your pet peeves.

    3. The class size study is evaluating something that’s already happened. The AGW studies are projecting something that is to happen in the future.

      There’s a lot more room for foul play in the latter type of study.

    4. I could be wrong, but perhaps it has something to do with the nature of their studies.

      If AGW is found to real in studies, more money will be given to keep studying it, research preventive measures etc. etc. If AGW is not found to be real, no more money will be spent to research it.

      The same can not be said about smaller class size studies. For instance, if a study shows smaller class sizes improve test scores (or whatever measures they are using to determine effectiveness), more money is not needed to study the effects further. If a study shows that smaller class sizes do NOT improve test scores, more money is not needed to study the effects further.

      So I believe, in answer to your question, the nature of the studies determine the researchers predisposition towards finding a certain result.

  22. I’m curious to know what percentage of self-identified libertarians home school their children?

    From my experience, it seem to be very few but I’d be curious to see what people here think.

    1. Private school.

      Where actual professional school teachers reside. In Fayette County, KY there is a nationally ranked private school where they have had 100% college acceptance rates from graduating seniors going on forever. Their teachers get paid about $10k LESS than the public school goons. I have known of at least 2 teachers who ave taken a pay cut in order to teach there, after waiting years for an opening.

      1. Personally, I do not have kids, but if I did, I would send them to a Sudbury Valley School like this one:

        http://www.phillyfreeschool.org/

        http://www.sudval.org/index.html

    2. Currently we homeschool, but when we lived in Portland, OR our son attended:

      http://villagefreeschool.org

      A private non-accredited k-12 alternative. Similar to a Sudbury type school.

  23. lol, wow I never even thought about it like that before. Makes sense dude.

    http://www.real-privacy.tk

  24. Fire all of their asses. Collectivist bastards.

  25. The teachers’ unions are the number one problem with public education in America today. Prior to Jimmy Carter taking office the US had the number one public education system in the world in every subject. Carter instituted the Department of Education to appease the teachers’ unions and since then the quality of public education has steadily slid to where it is now – ranked no better than 39th in any subject. Thanks, teachers’ unions.

  26. Smaller class size works in THEORY. Take two great teachers and add a third great teacher and the students benefit.

    Mandatory smaller class can be a disaster in practice. When this becomes policy, every school in a district will look for additional teachers. Most of the experienced teachers will gravitate towards the better schools away from the more difficult, often inner-city ones. These inner-city schools end up with the least qualified, least experience teachers and their students end up short changed.

    The situation becomes worse if this is followed by layoffs as many of the most recent hires are in the worse schools and thus are laid off first.

    The best class size is the number of students divided by the number of qualified teachers.

  27. But a falling population does mean fewer students in schools.

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