Wednesday, July 18, 2018

BOOM! Thanks to NYT, the Trump saga enters a new and darker phase, starting tomorrow

Why muddy a clear message of a nation in danger?

From the Start, Trump Has Muddied a Clear Message: Putin Interfered (NYT)

July 19

     If the Times has this right, Trump has known that Putin ordered the interference with our election since early January, 2017.
     That means that Trump has been protecting his pal Putin all this time. He's been obstructing justice.

The "resignation" episode?

Aargh! Things are gettin' Biblical!

Fox on Trump: "[he] sounds insane"

Quick! Clean up!
Press conference clip:
Reporter: “Is Russia still targeting the US, Mr. President?”
Trump: “no.”
Trump: “There’s never been a President as tough on Russia as I have been.”

Fox gang:
Fox host 1: "All right, so the President there talking about, uh, his record with Russia—'as well as anybody has ever done with Russia'...."
. . .
Fox host 2: [Trump was asked:] “‘Are they [the Russians] still meddling?’… and [Trump] said ‘no,’ … all he said was ‘no,’ which sounds insane.”
Clean up the clean-up!
Fox host 3: “It does sound insane.”
Fox host 2: “It could be that he believes we’re stopping the meddling at this point….”
Fox host 3: “We’re working really hard to make this sound reasonable….”
Fox host 2: "No no no no, I’m not working hard to make it sound reasonable, because it doesn’t sound remotely reasonable; …it sounds insane….”

* * *
     NOT LONG AFTER, Trump's press secretary held a press conference in which she stated that Trump's "no" was a "no" to further questions, not to whether Russia is still meddling.
     Nobody's buying that one either.

The English Major

The Evolving English Major (Inside Higher Ed)
     Report documents decline in numbers of majors but growth in new tracks. Of the specializations within major, writing is doing relatively well, and literature not so much.
By Colleen Flaherty
July 18, 2018
     Bachelor’s degrees conferred to English majors are down 20 percent since 2012, but responsive departments that know how to market their worth to students are finding ways to thrive, says a new analysis from the Association of Departments of English, or ADE. The group, which is part of the Modern Language Association, says its report is the most comprehensive study of English departments to date.
     “While declines in the number of undergraduate majors have affected English departments widely and at all types of institutions, most departments are exploring ways to respond,” reads “A Changing Major: The Report of the 2016-17 ADE Ad Hoc Committee on the English Major,” released today.... (continued)

Monday, July 16, 2018

Watch: Republican leadership will now sink to a new and almost unimaginable low, defending a manifestly treasonous President

Trusts murderous autocrat Putin more than his own Justice Dept.
Richard Nixon's resignation: the day before, a moment of truth
(The Christian Science Monitor, 8-7-14)
     Forty years ago, a Republican delegation led by Barry Goldwater told Richard Nixon he had lost almost all his remaining support in Congress. The next day, he resigned.

Nixon Slide From Power: Backers Gave Final Push
(NYT, 8-12-74)
     The situation, said Senator Scott, was “gloomy.”
     “It sounds damn gloomy, Mr. Nixon replied.
     “Hopeless,” said Senator Goldwater.
     As the meeting ended, Mr. Nixon hinted that he understood there was only one option and that, perhaps, he had known it all along.
     Will such a delegation materialize now?
     Of course not.

Treasonous Trump —The President as Russian stooge


8-14: do you regret all the lying?

✅ Trump Encourages Racist Conspiracy Theory on Kamala Harris’s Eligibility to Be Vice President NYT ✅ Orange County Sees Overall Coronavirus...

Goals and Values and Twaddle

blather: long-winded talk with no real substance*
The whole concept of MSLOs [measurable student learning outcomes] as the latest fad in education is somewhat akin to the now discredited fad of the '90's, Total Quality Management, or TQM. Essentially, the ACCJC adopted MSLOs as the overarching basis for accrediting community colleges based on their faith in the theoretical treatises of a movement.... After repeated requests for research showing that such use of MSLOs is effective, none has been forthcoming from the ACCJC [accreditors]. Prior to large scale imposition of such a requirement at all institutions, research should be provided to establish that continuous monitoring of MSLOs has resulted in measurable improvements in student success at a given institution. No such research is forthcoming because there is none….
The Accountability Game…., Leon F. Marzillier (Academic Senate for California Community Colleges, October, 2002)
In the summer of ’13, I offered a critique of the awkward verbiage by which the district and colleges explain their values, goals, and objectives —aka SOCCCD'S G&V (goals and values) blather.
I wrote a post each for the district, Saddleback College, and Irvine Valley College efforts. (See the links below.)
This verbiage—stated in terms of “values,” “missions,” “goals,” “visions,” and whatnot—is often badly written. It is sometimes embarrassingly trite.
It occasionally communicates something worthwhile.
No doubt you are familiar with the usual objections to jargon. Higher education, too, has its jargon—an irony, given typical college-level instruction in writing, which urges jargon eschewery.
Sure enough, SOCCCD G&V blather is riddled with jargon and with terms misused and abused. For instance, in the case of the district’s dubious blather, the so-called “vision” is actually a purpose. Why didn't they just call it that?
As one slogs through this prattle, one finds that "visions" tend to be awfully similar to “missions,” with which they are distinguished. The latter in turn are awfully similar to “goals,” which must be distinguished from “objectives.” But aren't goals and objectives pretty much the same thing?
These perverse word games will surely perplex or annoy anyone armed with a command of the English language. In fact, readers will be perplexed to the degree that they are thus armed. Illiterates, of course, will be untroubled.
Here's a simple point: the district and colleges’ G&V blather tends to eschew good, plain English in favor of technical terms and trendy words and phrases (i.e., it tends to be bullshitty and vague). Thus, one encounters such trendy terminological turds as “dynamic,” “diversity,” “student success,” and “student-centered.” Even meretricious neologisms such as ISLOs and “persistence rates” pop up, unexplained, undefended.
Does anyone see a transparency problem with all of this? Shouldn't the public, or at least the well educated public, be able to comprehend statements of the colleges' goals and values?
In the case of the district, to its credit, all it really seems to want to say is that it wants to teach well and it wants students to succeed. Admirable!
So why all the ugly, common-sense defying, buzzword-encrusted claptrap?

Districtular poppycock: our “vision” and our “mission” and our tolerance of twaddle - July 31, 2013

THEY BUZZ: Saddleback College's "Mission, Vision, and Values" - August 4, 2013

IVC’s vision, mission, and goals: nonsense on stilts - August 5, 2013

THE IRVINE VALLEY CHRONICLES: no ideas, just clichés & buzzwords - Sep 30, 2013

*From my Apple laptop's dictionary