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The thread abides.

  • You all have heard about horse in your beef? Well, there could also be pork in your elk:
    It was in late March that Belgian authorities discovered that the elk mince, produced by Swedish food manufacturer Familjen Dafgård and sold at Ikea stores, contained a bit over one percent pork, which is the limit for contamination of meat products.

    An estimated 10,000 tons of lasagne stored in the furniture giant's central warehouse and at its department stores have been blocked for sale, reported Swedish newspaper Svenska Dagbladet (SvD) on Saturday.

    Ikea also withdrew a total of 17,600 packages of lasagne from its stores. All were produced at the Dafgårds factory at the time that the contamination is thought to have taken place.

    Bear in mind, this is only in Ikea's European locations. Apparently, there is no need to worry about pork in your stateside elk.
  • I didn't pursue a potentially promising academic career because I worried about exactly this:
    Don’t do it. Just don’t. I deeply regret going to graduate school, but not, Ron Rosenbaum, because my doctorate ruined books and made me obnoxious. (Granted, maybe it did: My dissertation involved subjecting the work of Franz Kafka to first-order logic.) No, I now realize graduate school was a terrible idea because the full-time, tenure-track literature professorship is extinct. After four years of trying, I’ve finally gotten it through my thick head that I will not get a job—and if you go to graduate school, neither will you.
  • Despite tensions in North Korea, tourism has no plans to stop:
    On Friday, officials met with ambassadors to ask if they needed help evacuating their personnel, several diplomatic missions said.

    The same concern apparently does not extend to foreign tourists.

    On Saturday, Amanda Carr, who works for a British travel company, wrapped up a pleasure tour of North Korea with a group of 20 tourists. Before leaving the country, they were able to take in a rally in Pyongyang.

    The UK's embassy in North Korea gave her company, Koryo Tours, some advice in light of the international tensions. "We've been advised to continue with the tours," Carr told CNN's Rafael Romo.

    Her North Korean partners -- from the state's travel agency -- continue to accept tourists, she said. And their demeanor is friendly towards them, as it always has been.

    Can you imagine that as a conversation piece? "Hey, you wanna see my photos from Pyongyang?" It would get my attention.
  • Fox News really wants to see more college coaches physically and verbally abuse their players.
  • The war between the plutocrats and theocrats continues. House Majority Whip Eric Cantor was challenged on marriage equality by CNBC hosts who just want the Republican Party to get with it already so they take take the issues off the table:
    “I know we never talk about gay marriage and I don’t know why not,” began co-host Joe Kernen. “Let’s say that you had definitive evidence that you had 52, 53, 54 percent of the country thinks it’s OK now for gay people to get married. I know a lot of gay people who would make great Republicans and it kills me that these free-market guys … a litany of private sector economics I hear from them and they vote the other way because of this.”

    “Do the Republicans — will they forever be behind the curve on this? Will history judge that they waited way too long?” Kernen challenged Cantor.

    In the end, Cantor begged them to stop talking about it and just focus on the things they do agree on. Because, yeah, that'll work.
  • One week, six oil spills. But sure, let's do Keystone XL. Because, outside of spilling even more oil all over the place, and that minor detail about extincting ourselves through carbon, what could go wrong?
  • Dear State of Ohio: The ghost of Charles Dickens would like to have a word with you:
    The Americans Civil Liberties Union on Friday revealed that courts in Ohio are illegally throwing poor people in jail for being unable to pay off a debt.

    In a report titled, “The Outskirts of Hope,” (PDF) the ACLU shines a light on a harrowing “debtors’ prison” system in Ohio — one that violates both the United States’ and the Ohio constitution. Ohioans are being jailed for “as small as a few hundred dollars,” despite the constitutional violation, and the economic evidence that it costs the state more to pay for their jail sentence than the amount of the debt.

    In its report, the ACLU details the stories of several people sent to debtors’ prison. Jack Dawley owed $1,500 in “fines and costs in the Norwalk Municipal Court,” and was behind on child support payments, leading the Ohio courts to send him to prison in Wisconsin for 3 and a half years.

    Can someone please tell me why we, as a society, look increasingly closer to a medieval or industrial revolution society? This isn't what we signed up for.
  • Will President Obama keep this promise he made to the AARP during his first campaign?

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Comment Preferences

  •  Gail Collins is a must-read today (6+ / 0-)

    and I try to convince you of that in this diary

    "We didn't set out to save the world; we set out to wonder how other people are doing and to reflect on how our actions affect other people's hearts." - Pema Chodron

    by teacherken on Sat Apr 06, 2013 at 12:04:05 PM PDT

  •  Charles Blow had an interesting column today (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    commonmass, PSzymeczek

    about which I wrote in Millennials are driving social - and political - change, which I hope you might read

    "We didn't set out to save the world; we set out to wonder how other people are doing and to reflect on how our actions affect other people's hearts." - Pema Chodron

    by teacherken on Sat Apr 06, 2013 at 12:05:22 PM PDT

  •  I have a post up on education that touches (2+ / 0-)

    an important issue, which is what teachers perceive happening to their profession

    please take time to look at a href="http://www.dailykos.com/story/2013/04/06/1199663/--I-realize-that-I-am-not-leaving-my-profession-in-truth-it-has-left-me-It-no-longer-exists">"I realize that I am not leaving my profession, in truth, it has left me. It no longer exists."

    "We didn't set out to save the world; we set out to wonder how other people are doing and to reflect on how our actions affect other people's hearts." - Pema Chodron

    by teacherken on Sat Apr 06, 2013 at 12:07:10 PM PDT

  •  IKEA sells groceries? (5+ / 0-)

    Who knew?

    In any event, this must be why they put "this product was manufactured in a plant that processes peanuts" for all those out there who are paranoid about that particularly noxious food product.

  •  well here's her problem (irony = missing term) (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    srkp23, commonmass, PSzymeczek
    My dissertation involved subjecting the work of Franz Kafka to first-order logic.
    y'know there's this thing called Continental Philosophy....

    Warning - some snark above‽ (-9.50; -7.03)‽ eState4Column5©2013 Acedia is essentially a flight from the world that leads to not caring even that one does not care

    by annieli on Sat Apr 06, 2013 at 12:08:42 PM PDT

    •  Heh... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Free Jazz at High Noon, badger

      It was a righteous rant, though, no question. I was "on the market" for a similar length of time as the author, though I held one-year positions throughout those four years (which I gather she did not). It was immensely frustrating, and like she says, jobs that went to someone else -- usually for reasons of "fit," or some such -- almost always seemed to reinforce a self-flagellating belief that I was unequal to the demands of the market. (The reality is that almost everyone was unequal to those demands.) And I consider myself astoundingly lucky to have landed -- and kept -- a tenure-track position in academia. I'm not really sure what I would advise an aspiring grad student in my field these days.

      The casualization of work, already well-established in other fields, has overtaken academia with a vengeance, and it has produced a similar set of consequences: large research schools with diminishing budgets increasingly hire adjunct and part-time instructors with no benefits and/or job security, even as the university -- in search of a better market position -- hires an increasingly platinum-plated roster of administrators, who will ostensibly be suitably remunerated for tracking down alternate sources of revenue in an increasingly cutthroat environment.

      Nothing requires a greater effort of thought than arguments to justify the rule of non-thought. -- Milan Kundera

      by Dale on Sat Apr 06, 2013 at 12:56:27 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Well, this: (7+ / 0-)
    Bear in mind, this is only in Ikea's European locations. Apparently, there is no need to worry about pork in your stateside elk.

    What is truth? -- Pontius Pilate

    by commonmass on Sat Apr 06, 2013 at 12:08:47 PM PDT

  •  "a pleasure tour of North Korea"? (12+ / 0-)

    Am I the only one who finds that notion incongruous?

    An interesting tour, maybe, but a pleasure tour?

    But then who am I to say? I've never been there.

    The GOP can't win on ideas. They can only win by lying, cheating, and stealing. So they do.

    by psnyder on Sat Apr 06, 2013 at 12:09:23 PM PDT

  •  I worry about screeds that rail against (8+ / 0-)

    graduate school. We already have a culture that is deeply anti-intellectual and instrumentalist in its focus, and the instrumentalism is completely focused on DOLLARS and WEALTH.

    So, I would read that Salon article with scepticism. What are they actually selling you? Why is scholarship disencentivized? Who wants people to leave critical thinking behind?

    We should be fighting for affordable education rather than railing against education that isn't "worth the money." Wrong metrics, wrong fight.

    •  Your skepticism is well warranted; however, (3+ / 0-)

      I don't think it applies to that particular piece. It was another in the large canon of "earning a PhD in English ruined my life" essays -- first-hand accounts of the futility, for all but the luckiest, of pursuing a career track with such a tiny probability of success. There's nothing anti-intellectual about discouraging all but the most motivated, talented, patient, thick-skinned, idealistic, persistent undergrads from heading down that path. In fact, for professors and academic advisors not to do so is professional malpractice.

      Hope you fall on your burger and fries.

      by cardinal on Sat Apr 06, 2013 at 12:46:23 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  There were some problems of tone in that (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      a2nite, YucatanMan

      article, but to be honest I think more people should hear that than the "everything is gonna be OK" line that is bullshit.

      I am getting tenure this year in a good anthropology department.  Based on what I have seen in the last decade...I have a fairly simple piece of advice.

      If you want to go to grad school in the humanities or social sciences...apply only to the top programs, and only go if they offer money.

      In the last decade, at least 50% of the jobs in my field have gone to the folks in the top 5 PhD programs, with the other 50% going to the other 50+ programs out there.  Most folks from the top programs get a job, most from non-top programs don't.

      It ain't fair.  There are many excellent scholars in the non-top tier programs.  But the reality is the folks from non-top tier programs consistently get screwed.

      "Empty vessels make the loudest sound, they have the least wit and are the greatest blabbers" Plato

      by Empty Vessel on Sat Apr 06, 2013 at 01:07:20 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Let me phrase this another way (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        PSzymeczek, YucatanMan

        If looking at graduate schools, look at where the professors you are hoping to study with went to graduate school...and apply there instead.

        Seriously, when you look over faculty lists at PhD programs, the range of schools they attended is fairly limited.

        "Empty vessels make the loudest sound, they have the least wit and are the greatest blabbers" Plato

        by Empty Vessel on Sat Apr 06, 2013 at 01:10:12 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Some interesting links in a response I made (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Empty Vessel, YucatanMan

          to the other comment. They address issues of class, race and gender.

          •  Interesting stuff (0+ / 0-)

            But my advice holds.  If you can't get in to a top program, don't go to grad school if you want a tenure track job (other jobs, sure).

            The chance of getting nothing is too high.  The long and short of it is that way too many schools have graduate programs.  In my field there are about 70 in the US, that number should be less than 20.

            "Empty vessels make the loudest sound, they have the least wit and are the greatest blabbers" Plato

            by Empty Vessel on Sat Apr 06, 2013 at 01:29:47 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  All those pipeline failures so close together (9+ / 0-)

    make me think that even gremlins are trying to tell the President to shit-can the Keystone XL pipeline. ;D

    You can't assassinate the character of any of modern conservative. You'd have to find where it was buried, dig it up, resurrect it, then kill it. And killing a zombie isn't really assassination, is it?

    by ontheleftcoast on Sat Apr 06, 2013 at 12:10:57 PM PDT

  •  WTF good does prison do? (12+ / 0-)

    Seriously.  What a ridiculous punishment.  They send a guy to prison because he can't pay for his kids?  That's got to be the dumbest thing I've ever seen.  

    How about you make the guy have supervised visits with his kids?  Make his sit there and talk to his kids so he can find out all the shit he's not doing for them?  

    Elizabeth WArren makes a good point about this.  SHe says that it is counterproductive to be overly punitive to so called Deadbeat Dads.  It doesn't do anything to solve the problem of the child, but instead it only increases the difficulty of having two separate households which are capable of supporting the kids.  

    Obviously, their choices should have consequences, but hthe consequences should at lleast make sense.

    Streichholzschächtelchen

    by otto on Sat Apr 06, 2013 at 12:13:02 PM PDT

    •  heck (8+ / 0-)

      I find the idea of debtors' prison to be something of an oxymoron:
      They don't have money to pay bills, so you throw them in prison where they can't make any money to pay their bills.
      That's so sensible. Not.

      (Is it time for the pitchforks and torches yet?)

      by PJEvans on Sat Apr 06, 2013 at 12:28:21 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Deadbeat dads should have unsupervised visits (5+ / 0-)

      with Joe Walsh.

      Such a "scared straight" ordeal will get them back on track pronto.

      No, I mean join the club, man. We meet every Thursday. We're trying to raise money for a field trip to Amsterdam. -- Leo (Tommy Chong) on That 70's Show.

      by lotac on Sat Apr 06, 2013 at 12:29:05 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  They send deadbeats (male and female) to jail (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      isabelle hayes, RainyDay

      for contempt of court as most child support is court ordered. If you violate the court order, you go to jail. You would be surprised how quickly deadbeats can come up with $2000 or $3000 dollars in unpaid child support after 30 minutes of sitting in jail. You make children, you support them.
      BTW, supervised visitation is not used unless the parent has done something that makes him or her a danger to the child or children. Like  drug addiction, physical or mental abuse towards the children, etc. Family Court is there to protect families, especially children, and not just to punish men. They don't send anyone to prison--just to the county jail until the arrears are paid.

  •  So Northern Europeans make their lasagn with elk? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    commonmass, PSzymeczek, YucatanMan

    I wonder if the Italians know about this...?

    And why are they freaking out about a little bit of pork being thrown in?  Do an inordinate number of Jews and Muslims buy this lasagne, or is blending meat from different species just considered icky all around Northern Europe?

    And now the Swedish company can't figure out what to do with all the recalled lasagne made with porked elk.  They might consider feeding it to Stockholm's homeless, considering they are now supplied with horsemeat lasagne from the same company.

    "In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican." - H. L. Mencken

    by SueDe on Sat Apr 06, 2013 at 12:13:57 PM PDT

  •  Oh my. Obama's eyes didn't look like they (5+ / 0-)

    believed what his mouth was saying in that video.  I didn't notice at the time.

    Of all the preposterous assumptions of humanity over humanity, nothing exceeds most of the criticisms made on the habits of the poor by the well-housed, well-warmed, and well-fed. --Herman Melville

    by ZedMont on Sat Apr 06, 2013 at 12:16:03 PM PDT

  •  because... (12+ / 0-)
    Can someone please tell me why we, as a society, look increasingly closer to a medieval or industrial revolution society? This isn't what we signed up for
    it's the republican ideal
    women as property?  check
    debtor's prisons?       check
    rich as god entitled rulers?  check
    rest of population as serfs?  check
  •  So the real lesson we've learned from the (12+ / 0-)

    fall of communism was that the liberal strain in American politics was fueled entirely by fear of a workers' revolution.  No more communists and now we have predatory banks, and government of the corporation, and absolute contempt for social betterment.  Tough cookies: old people, middle class, working stiffs.

    Just a thought.

    "Let's see what fresh fuckwittery these dolts can contrive to torment themselves with this time." -- Iain Banks, The Hydrogen Sonata

    by Rikon Snow on Sat Apr 06, 2013 at 12:16:47 PM PDT

  •  There aren't jobs for Literature Ph.D's!? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    commonmass, PSzymeczek

    Who could've guessed?

    But really, as long as you study the right subject, grad school can absolutely be worth it. I'm currently going for a Master's in Computer Science, and once I complete it I'm basically guaranteed to have a job that pays well above the median household income.

    •  Worth it? Curiosity, learning and enlightenment (4+ / 0-)

      used to be the motivator for some to seek additional education, not simply the promise of wages.  But I am, I think, an artifact of the past.

      Of course, I knew a fellow who went to MIT, got a couple of degrees in Math and then became a potter.  He's a happy man.  He's part of an informal monthly club of men similarly possessed (mathematicians, engineers, theoretical physicists) who spend one weekend away from their wives and families working on theories of time travel.   Life is a funny thing.

      "Out of Many, One Nation." This is the great promise of the United States of America -9.75 -6.87

      by Uncle Moji on Sat Apr 06, 2013 at 12:55:32 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Sure, if you're just interested in learning (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Uncle Moji, PSzymeczek

        then there's certainly nothing wrong with it. But doing it in the hopes of getting a job related to it is naive.

        One of the members of my group in a Computer Science class majored in English, then worked construction before going back to school for CS.

        •  Not naive, just different from you (5+ / 0-)

          My father, a very successful business man and investor, had a degree in education.

          The only piece of advice (he was a man of very few words) he gave to me when he was near dying was this:  Do what makes you happy.  

          If money makes you happy, if financial certainty makes you happy, by all means pursue your happiness.  But it doesn't mean people who make different choices are naive, or foolish, it just means we have a different standard of happiness.

          My father's happiness was providing for the education of his many children, and for the financial security and well-being of his wife (widow) for the 30 years he had projected she would out live him, without financial burden to their children.  She outlived his projections, but not his wealth.  She was lovingly and happily cared for until the end of her life, and he would be happy for that.  

          My young friend, do whatever makes you happy.  Enjoy your life.  And live without regrets.  

          ps.  The MIT potter I mentioned is very successful in his field of art, and has made more financially than most mathematicians.  But he did it for love of art, not for money, and that's his happy coincidence.    

          Good luck in all you do!

          "Out of Many, One Nation." This is the great promise of the United States of America -9.75 -6.87

          by Uncle Moji on Sat Apr 06, 2013 at 01:22:08 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  That often is what happens. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            wintergreen8694

            You do what you love, you tend to be good at it, not just because you love it but because you devote enough time to it to get really good at it.

            Most people in the world aren't really good at much of anything. They may be able to do things, but they often don't devote enough time and effort to them to become really skilled.

            So if you are really good at something, people tend to seek you out. Or buy what you make. Or pay you for advice, training, or expertise in some way.

            They often pay you well, because few people have that level of skill.

            And you make money. Often more than you would have in whatever field you formally trained for.

      •  You can learn that stuff for free (0+ / 0-)

        Why would you pay untold thousands of dollars when you can read all the literature and literary criticism for free?

        (They say it's just one weekend away from their wives working on time travel, but each time they actually go away for several months, then come back just after they left and return home.)

        It isn't what we don't know that gives us trouble, it's what we know that ain't so. — Will Rogers

        by dconrad on Sat Apr 06, 2013 at 03:39:07 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  A mentor of mine (0+ / 0-)

          upon hearing my interest in getting an MFA told me that they would help me get into the program they taught as, but asked why I wanted to spend thousands of dollars on a degree.   I said "To learn."  To which my friend replied, "Read, read everything you can, and write, write, and write some more.  You don't need a degree."  So, I read..

          "Out of Many, One Nation." This is the great promise of the United States of America -9.75 -6.87

          by Uncle Moji on Mon Apr 08, 2013 at 10:30:49 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  unless Congress ups the number of visas (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      RainyDay

      the way MS and other major software companies are pressuring them to so they can fill out their ranks with cheap(er) non-citizen proles, er, trainees, er, the best and the brightest. Who will be dependent on keeping their corporate master happy if they want to stay in this country.

      So Id be cautious about the term 'guaranteed'. And you might want to consider learning a 2nd language.

      •  I doubt it. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        mmacdDE

        Writing software is difficult. I was talking to a professor who said that a large portion (I think 50% or more) of the students in the introductory programming classes either failed or dropped the class.

        Sure, companies may flirt with hiring foreigners without much education for cheaper, but they'll son discover that you get what you pay for, in this case cheap software that doesn't work well.

        And when that software does breakdown, now you're worse off than you were before. You've already spent the money on it, and you don't have anybody who can fix it without paying people like me the wage you were trying to avoid in the first place. So you end up spending more money then if you'd just hired the well trained people from the start.

  •  To funny about IKEA! What's even funnier is that (7+ / 0-)

    NPR reported that it was the IKEA's "Moose Lasagna" that contained pork, whereupon my wife looked at me and said that she didn't think there were that many moose out there to make all that IKEA Lasagna!

    I guess you had to be in the car with us on the way home to appreciate the humor index of that comment....  I was thinking the very same thought as well.

    I guess that's why we are married to each other...

    "Don't Let Your Mouth Write A Check, That Your Butt Can't Cash."

    by LamontCranston on Sat Apr 06, 2013 at 12:21:47 PM PDT

  •  2 years ago UPS delivered someone else's (5+ / 0-)

    package to my house while I was gone.  I was able to find the proper recipient of the Xmas present inside.  We made arrangements to meet near his house.

    He gave me an 8 inch hunk of homemade, smoked elk thuringer/sausage.  He told me he grinds up pork shoulder to help keep the elk moist.  About 10% was pork.

    And it was fabulously yummy.

    "Go well through life"-Me (As far as I know)

    by MTmofo on Sat Apr 06, 2013 at 12:24:56 PM PDT

  •  We recently hired two tenure track profs (5+ / 0-)

    In literature/cultural studies in the NYC/LI area. Just sayin.

  •  Re pipeline leaks. They ought to be the last (6+ / 0-)

    straw in making the decision.  As a Canadian, I'm pretty ashamed of the tar sands.  They are hard to fight, though, because of the economics.  

    Just learned of a relative who got a job as an apprentice heavy duty mechanic in Fort McMurray.  She'll make a fortune when she gets her papers.

    We must, indeed, all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately. B. Franklin

    by Observerinvancouver on Sat Apr 06, 2013 at 12:34:30 PM PDT

  •  So are they gonna throw all that lasagna away? (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    commonmass, lotac, Uncle Moji, mmacdDE

    Seems a shame. And a huge waste. Also, what's wrong with making your own lasagna, from scratch? It's not hard. Cheap, too, unless you're making the Barefoot Contessa's lobster version.

    "Let's stay together"--Rev. Al Green and President Obama

    by collardgreens on Sat Apr 06, 2013 at 12:35:23 PM PDT

  •  No more lit in high schools either (4+ / 0-)
    Don’t do it. Just don’t. I deeply regret going to graduate school, but not, Ron Rosenbaum, because my doctorate ruined books and made me obnoxious. (Granted, maybe it did: My dissertation involved subjecting the work of Franz Kafka to first-order logic.) No, I now realize graduate school was a terrible idea because the full-time, tenure-track literature professorship is extinct. After four years of trying, I’ve finally gotten it through my thick head that I will not get a job—and if you go to graduate school, neither will you.
    I notice that the new nationwide standards adopted by various states already stop reading literature in the 10th grade and concentrate on reading reports.

    At first I thought, hmmm, maybe literature PhDs should be put first in line to teach high school lit. (like in France, where Mallarmé was a lycée teacher).

    But the drive to eliminate the humanizing that comes from experiencing good literature seems to be overwhelming.

    It's all business all the time.

    •  How can they read a dull, super boring report (0+ / 0-)

      If they can't read literature? At least there's a story to most literature. A plot. Something to keep your interest.

      Giving hs kids nothing but reports is guaranteed to turn them totally off reading.

      Or maybe somebody could come up with a illicit book club where the kids snuck off to read poetry, and dickens, Shakespeare, Salinger...

      Hmm.... Maybe this might work out not so bad after all.

  •  Boeing 787 "battery" test fligh (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    side pocket

    Yesterday, Boeing flew a 787 on a specific test flight for the new battery configuration. The battery pack is a major reason for the entire fleet being grounded.

    Boeing has not publicly announced the results of the test flight so far. They face a hearing before the NTSB in 3 weeks to discuss progress on various safety issues.

    No, I mean join the club, man. We meet every Thursday. We're trying to raise money for a field trip to Amsterdam. -- Leo (Tommy Chong) on That 70's Show.

    by lotac on Sat Apr 06, 2013 at 12:47:20 PM PDT

  •  Due respect (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    PSzymeczek

    Dante:

    Due respect: Ms Schuman's article is garbage: whiny, overstated, playing-to-the-disaffected-Slate-galleries garbage.  

  •  Adjuncts at my job may be made part-time. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    RainyDay

    There is a corps of adjuncts here who teach 4-5 classes per semester.  The pay is lower than at comparable institutions, but you can make a living without ungodly commutes to multiple colleges.

    Then the enforcers of the 30-hour rule in Obamacare declared that each hour of teaching assumes two hours of prep, therefore no more than ten hours of courses may be taught.  If my employer took the $2,000 fine, the expense to employ an quasi-fulltime adjunct would rise from about $1680/class to $1850/class for three credit hours if full-time adjuncts exclusively taught the course.  This added expense would not apply to classes taught by full-timers, nor to classes that are taught by adjuncts who teach a course or two to get out of the house or to improve their time after work.  

    The added expense to taking the $2,000 hit only applies to the half of courses which are taught by adjuncts who are full-time by desire. The average financial hit per class would not be $170, it would be $85.

    Student tuition plus state support works out to about $11,000 for a class of average size (20).  Student tuition alone is $6,667.  The extra $85 would work out to a tuition rise of 1.3% if the state contributed nil, and the place I work raises tuition by 2%-4% every year.

    By the way, the upper-level administrators discussing this met at one of the state's historic resorts for a two-day weekday retreat;  hotel rates there are $180/night.  

    Also, Papa John's and Darden Restaurants backtracked on their plans to reduce workers below 30 hours thanks to boycotts -- so this gives an idea of the esteem that upper Administration holds us in, despite having advanced degrees.  My state is a low-wage state, but I overheard the McDonald's manager tell her staff at orientation that they have a health insurance program for part-timers where management pays 30% of the premium -- here management allows streetsurance vendors to practice their trade among the adjuncts (and in doing so stand head and shoulders above the rest of the state's colleges. Another place's adjuncts organized for a similar plan, just to be quashed by their administration.)

    In all fairness, I get the impression that the levels of Adminstration closest to us (department chairs and deans) are advocating as strongly as they can for us in a "fire-at-will", "right-to-work" state, as do some of the administrators not in the chain of command, but with their own secretaries (which indicates rank).

    Finally, the greatest frustration is that we, as adjunct faculty, are caught in the middle of what can only be called a market failure.  We tend to be well-educated.  In a community college setting, we have some social capital.  Those of us with doctorates know a little about securing grants.  We have the knowledge between us to organize and run a two-year college with all the accoutrements, and can probably do so in a way that offers lower tuition for students, lower or zero expense to our newly Teahadi state, smaller class size (20%-30% reduction) and moderately higher pay (say, $2400/class in salary and benefits) to faculty.  I really doubt that colleges would pull such crap if enough of us would get together to organize such an institution on a cooperative basis.  

    (P.S. I did diary something like this 2-3 days ago, but got few responses.  I know in my heart and bones that adjunct and other contingent faculty can pull this off, but grieve that we have not done so and that to date I've received very little advice, let alone encouragement, in such an endeavor.  So where do I start?  Please note that giving advice is cheaper than responding to the plea for help that I might have to post early next year if this cut goes through and I don't find other work.  Unemployment in my state is tied for eighth worst.)

    "Politics should be the part-time profession of every citizen who would protect the rights and privileges of free people and who would preserve what is good and fruitful in our national heritage." -- Lucille Ball

    by Yamaneko2 on Sat Apr 06, 2013 at 01:11:20 PM PDT

  •  Live Blogging the Colorado Meetup (0+ / 0-)
  •  I find it peculiar that when (former) Rutgers (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    a2nite, PSzymeczek, YucatanMan

    basketball coach Mike Rice throws a basketball, as hard as he can, at one of his players, he always aims at the groin area. It is not a pass or a heads-up, it is an obvious attempt to injure. That is not where a player can easily catch the ball. So this punk coach has more issues than anger management.

    Watch the tape, it is consistent that his MO is to aim low.

    I hope to see the players and their families join in a class action lawsuit, I mean, its a crime. Arrest the guy.

    Honesty is not a policy. It's a character trait.

    by Says Who on Sat Apr 06, 2013 at 01:14:11 PM PDT

  •  Why are we looking like a medieval society? (3+ / 0-)

    high fructose corn syrup. That's all I got.

  •  Okiciyap Quilt Auction Diaries Series (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    YucatanMan

    Okiciyap logo

    These diaries are to promote the Okiciyap Quilt Auction which will directly benefit Okiciyap Food Pantry and Childrens Center.  Please visit, read & recommend them.  The Auction Has Begun.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Okiciyap Quilt Auction, Wish Lists, and Challenges ~ nomandates

    Okiciyap Quilt Auction, plus a Youth Library ~ nomandates

    Okiciyap: When We Help, the Transformative Power of Compassion ~ Grizzard

    Okiciyap Quilt Auction: It's All About Community ~ Smoh

    New Day - Quilt Matching Funders seek your help in raising $6,000 for Okiciyap ~ navajo

    Quilt Matching Funders seek your help in raising $6,000 for Okiciyap ~ Meteor Blades

    Okiciyap Quilt Auction: We Are All Responsible ~ peregrine kate

    Okiciyap Quilt Auction: Strength in Numbers, Synergy and Symbols ~ GreyHawk

    Okiciyap Food Pantry Still Needs Us, Please Donate or Bid Today~ weck

    Okiciyap- Why a food bank, by the numb3ers ~ ZenTrainer

    Okiciyap Quilt Auction benefit: Help the people of Cheyenne River ~ Dave in Northridge  

    Okiciyap: Feeding The Hungry ~ glorificus

    Okiciyap Quilt Auction: Thanking DK Quilters Who Share Their Quilt Story~ Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse

    Two-Spirit and Okiciyap ~ Horace Boothroyd III

    This quilt is not invisible- Okiciyap is Lakota for 'we help' and we can help auction it ~ Denise Oliver Velez

    Okiciyap Quilt Guild Auction. We Help. That's What It's All About. ~ radical simplicity

    Okiciyap Quilt Auction: Let the Bidding Begin ~ GreyHawk

    Okiciyap Quilt Auction benefit begins Wednesday. Help the people of Cheyenne River ~ Meteor Blades

    Okiciyap - We Help ~ OPOL

    DK Quilt Guild & Okiciyap Quilt Auction: Why this Quilt ~ leu2500

    Okiciyap Dkos Auction Quilt ~ BeadLady

    Of Quilts and History: The Okiciyap Quilt Auction ~ winifred3

    DK Quilt Guild: Okiciyap Quilt Auction~We Quilt For Others ~ Pam from Calif

    Feeding the Body, Feeding the Spirit: Okiciyap (We Help) ~ Aji

    Twelve is a community number ~ GreyHawk

    Helping the Helpers Who Helped the Helpers ~ Glen The Plumber

    DK Quilt Guild: The Okiciyap Quilt ~ BeadLady

    TIME FOR THE BIG SHOW!!!! ~ glorificus

    DK Quilt Guild: Quilting for a Good Cause ~ weck
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Okiciyap 2013 Quilt~ DK Quilt Guild

    Okiciyap 2013 Quilt~ DK Quilt Guild

    If you cannot afford to bid on the quilt, or if you were outbid, you can contribute here:

    Okiciyap Food Pantry

    P.O. Box 172

    Isabel, S.D. 57633

    Online Donation

    It is a terrible thing to see and have no vision. ~ Helen Keller

    by Pam from Calif on Sat Apr 06, 2013 at 02:30:21 PM PDT

  •  It looks like Obama broke his promise (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    YucatanMan

    but does it matter?  I mean, what the hell, as long as we just capitulate completely to the republican drivel is all that matters, no?  Speaking of broken promises, what about the filibuster in the Senate?  Harry is threatening to go all nukey on the whole thing after watching North Korea say the same thing with tongue in cheek.

  •  One of the sad consequences of the (0+ / 0-)

    increasingly monetized lives we all live (everything has and carries a price), of the corporate control of our lives, of the shrinking of government by administration after administration, starting with Reagan, then Bush, then Clinton, then W the Idiot, and now Obama, is that academic careers are no longer prevalent.

    The "shrink or kill the government" movement kicked off by Ronald Reagan's "Government isn't the solution. Government is the problem" has led to slashed state university budgets, commercialization of education, increased privatization of ... well, everything.

    And there go tenured academic careers through which knowledge is advanced and what we like to call civilization is maintained, studied and spread.

    So we can now chalk up civilization as a casualty of the Chicago school of economics Neo-liberal, (fallacious) free market, small (or no) government system.

    "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

    by YucatanMan on Sat Apr 06, 2013 at 07:48:45 PM PDT

  •  The oil spill article (0+ / 0-)

    reminded me of "Fight Club" , when Project Mayhem changed the billboard to read "You can recycle your used oil as fertilizer.  A Friendly message brought to you by the EPA" The pic of the oil in the yards made me think of it.

    (sigh) life resembles art.

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