#@&!* ing Muppets (or why I need to thank Goldman Sachs)

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Had it not been for Greg Smith’s allegations that Goldman Sachs employees referred to clients as Muppets I may have missed out on the opportunity to use that term pejoratively in everyday situations; often frustrating ones that occur when little ears are in the car.  Mr. Smith, Mr. Blankfein- a sincere thank you for presenting me with a solution.  My children can now spend otherwise long and boring car rides scanning the streets for the Muppets that their father seems to see all over the road (but mostly cutting him off without using a directional).

Failing to Educate

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This short video is a great example of why the college education myth persists.  Instead of critically examining the data the guest simply rehashes the conventional wisdom that people with a BA make more money over their lifetime than those without one.  No need to look at the particulars, offer alternatives to college, or (gasp) suggest an educational system that better matches skills/aptitude to employment opportunities prior to making the decision to go to college. 

We ought to re-evaluate the role of higher education as it relates to career development.  Much of the academic content a college program provides can now be learned online for free or at low cost.  While I greatly enjoyed the History and Government courses, these were taken to help frame my view of the world.  The value they provided in this capacity is far more than any economic value they will ever have for me.  It may or may not disappoint Prof. Maier to know that my knowledge of the Battle of the Somme hasn’t once landed me a job or resulted in a promotion.

I’m OK with this.  The technical skills I need in my career I seek out and learn outside a classroom.  The pace of change is so rapid that continuous skill building is demanded of those who seek to advance their career.  This ability to self-motivate and be curious about the world around us is a far greater attribute to take to an interview than what many college degreed job seekers carry with them.

Student Loan Debt & Cultural Attitudes

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This article caught my attention since I was recently told by a coworker who graduated last year and only has eight months experience that he “shouldn’t have to do this, I have a degree.”  His frustration is understandable.

Students and recent graduates need to reevaluate the benefit of taking out so much money. Additionally, at the high school level staff need to seek alternatives to the decades long mantra of go to college get a good job.

Honesty about our educational and economic reality would greatly enhance our ability to find solutions.

Monday morning humor

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As Monday morning rolls around I expect that the typical cast of characters to be gushing over how great Friday’s sale results were, see here, and drooling discussion about cyber Monday prospects.  Students will be back from the Thanksgiving weekend ready for class and preparing for employment opportunities that may not be available when they look for them next spring.

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Don’t the 1% know their place when it comes to the 0.01% ?

Synopsis of Global Financial Unrest

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Check out this article to get a quick handle on the growing economic problems that we face, both as a nation and as a global society.  We need to begin instituting incremental changes that will re-balance our economy and our society.  The sooner we start honest discussions about the society we have and that to which we aspire the sooner we can begin to mend the cultural rift.  If we procrastinate too long we increase the magnitude in the reversion to the mean.

 

 

Some time off…

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I’m taking the week off to relax and catch up on some reading, particularly God Created the Integers, by Stephen Hawking.

Default?

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Scientist: [resigned] Well, Homer, I guess you’re the winner by default.
Homer: Default? Woo hoo! The two sweetest words in the English
language: de-fault! De-fault! De-fault!
[assistant clubs him]

A little late…

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We won!

Scott Brown in Boston Globe

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There’s a new video of Scott Brown in the Boston Globe. At the beginning of the clip when he is making calls I can be heard on the phone in the background.

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VOTE SCOTT BROWN U.S. SENATE

I am very much interested in how Iran is using proxies within Afghanistan. I would hate to see Afghanistan turn into another Iraq, where the United States cedes control to those funded by a state with which we are not allied.

I am also concerned that the focus of Afghanistan will detract from our need to focus on Iran and the issue of nuclear proliferation. The continuing production of UF6 only brings the world closer to one of two options.

Either the US will have to accept that Iran is a nuclear power or the world will have to take military action prior to that time which the Iranians are capable of producing military weapons from the “civilian” nuclear technology they now possess.

I suspect that the option for Iran to be an accepted nuclear power has been taken off the table.

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