Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Technologically Challenged

In King George's state of the regime speech a week ago today, he drew out a plan to build America's competive advantage. A key component of which was to increase the number of Math and Science teacher in the US. This would be a necessity if we are going to succeed in accomplishing one of his other goals of weaning America from it's addiction to Oil.
This past weekend the impotent fool delivered the 2007 Federal budget to the legislature for mark up and approval. A process that always seems to take eons. In this budget he allocates $5.9 billion for this "American Competive Inniative", but then goes onto cut $10.2 billion from the Dept. Of Education, these cuts would eliminate a the Perkins Student loans program, After school programs and funding for other basic programs. Probably ones like school lunches, because we all know that a students learns better when he or she is starving.

Let's look closer at this, we are going to throw $5.9 billions at Math and Science for better teachers. But we not going to help get these people through college so they can become teachers. Currently there is already a nation wide short for teachers. So are we going to re-train say an art teacher so they can teach physics? I just don't understand how he copulated this line of thinking.
Many Americans don't see the educational profession as a money maker, you just don't see many elementary school teachers drive around in a SUV with Bling (Yeah, I said it "Bling") Americans are drawn to careers that are going to bring home some cash, Business, Marketing, Real Estate, or even Internet Tech. We want jobs that have 6 figures attached at the end of the year.
I just don't see many brokers dropping their clients to go back to college to obtain a degree in Trigonometry or say chemistry. I know they absolute won't, if they have to pick up the bill for it.
To make America Competive doesn't lie with just throwing money at a problem. An educator must be well rounded and able to argue, articulate and relate to his/her students. Yes, Teacher at almost all levels are not paid nearly enough for all that they have to put up with. In recent years we've seen the school systems run like a prison system with everyone fearing for themselves. What we need to do to make America competive is to make teaching as a career enriching and worthwhile again. Teachers need to have their class sizes reduced, access to cutting edge technologies, openness to discuss theories and concepts.

In his second appeal to break our Addiction to OIL, that is much easier said than done. In reality we only import 20% of oil from overseas most of which actually comes from that dread nation of Canada. You know they did successfully invade the US and burn Washington DC, ok so it was in 1812. If anything we should want to decrease our dependency on Oil because it's becoming more expensive to find. Opening up Alaska to exploration isn't going to help either. We need to decrease our dependency on Oil so we can clean our Air and Water. That should be our major goal.

The only reason this is a push now is because Bush realize it will be easier to give money to energy conglomerates if it's being ear-marked as funding for alternative energy. In the US we get about 50% of electricity from coal, another probably 30% from hydro-electric plants(most of which are in Canada) and the last 20% is LNG, Nuclear, wind and solar plants.
About 60% of Oil goes to the Plastic and Chemical industry and that last 40% is used to motor our SUV's down I-95.
So think about all these numbers. So wouldn't a better proposal to wean us off Oil to be to Recycle plastics and produce more fuel efficient vehicles? To do all this we need to Educate everyone one no just a few in select fields. A well educated public is our competive edge.

Agian this shows how disconnected the President is with the American populous. These recent proposals continue attack the lower and middle class in our country. The growth of America has always been built on the backs of the middle class. We are the ones that have fought in the wars, built the cars and crawled down into mine shafts. The middle class was the industrial machine of the 19-20th century America. Our nation continues to find it's Identity in this post industrial age. More and more of our manufacturing jobs move oversea and become more automated we need embrace education. Our society is become an increased service industry based, in this type of work force our future generations are going to need increased access to higher education especially. Removing and scaling back of Federal Perkins and Stadford loans and Pell grants programs place disadvantage to our citizens.

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