Eunice the Menace

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A political thesaurus

Gotta love how TPH updates us so succinctly with the changes in Life(tm). ;)

The Plastic Hippo

Given the rich complexity of the English language, as it develops and evolves to reflect the character of its speakers, it is difficult to have sympathy of those who mourn the passing of the correct spoken usage of words like “bad” and “wicked”. Remembering the words invented by Shakespeare that still remain in common speech, the really big difficulty is keeping up with a living language that is changing organically.

Having only recently mastered the use of “wicked” as meaning excellent and the use of “bad” as the complete opposite, young people tell me that these terms are now obsolete with the user becoming the object of derision. Those that cleave to the purity of English must despair as they hear it cleaved asunder by modern idiom. However, the English language has not popped its clogs, kicked the bucket and is not pushing up the daisies. Instead it is fit…

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overlearning and college education

orgtheory.net

One of my beliefs, born out by research like Arum and Roska’s, is that people don’t learn or retain much from college. There are many reasons why, but one is that colleges don’t believe in “overlearning,” which means that you study a topic so much that it becomes automatic.

Consider the typical college class. They meet two or three times a week. Students either skip the readings, skim them, or quickly forget them. Unless it’s part of the grade, students are often absent from class. The exams typically cover the material, but then you move on to new stuff. Many students are allowed to move on with marginal grades. The opposite of “overlearning.” Colleges offer “barelylearning.”

If colleges were serious about learning, the entire system of lectures and semesters would be dumped. Occasional passive lectures and marginal grades would be abolished. Instead, we’d probably have very short…

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Everyday, Ordinary People

More than Okay

As most of you know, my husband and I are foster parents and have been for the last 13 years or so. We’ve had over 20 kids enter our lives and that number continues to grow.  My parents started fostering when I was 12 years old so I’ve also been blessed to have many foster brothers and sisters to call my own. This has been my “story” for the past 28 years and frankly it’s all I know.

People tell me all the time that the job we do is amazing. How much they admire us, and how they could never do what we do. I’ve heard that the world needs more people like us. That we must have the patience of saints. People thank us, congratulate us and pat us on the back.

But here’s what I have to say to all of that.

We are no different from anyone else … we just chose…

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When Your (Brown) Body is a (White) Wonderland

Speaking as a ‘white’ medically female person, I have to say thank you to tressiemc for highlighting part of a culture that I didn’t realise (but am unsurprised to learn) exists.

tressiemc

This may meander.

Miley Cyrus made news this week with a carnival-like stage performance at the MTV Video Music Awards that included life-size teddy bears, flesh-colored underwear, and plenty of quivering brown buttocks. Almost immediately after the performance many black women challenged Cyrus’ appropriation of black dance (“twerking”). Many white feminists defended Cyrus’ right to be a sexual woman without being slut-shamed. Yet many others wondered why Cyrus’ sad attempt at twerking was news when the U.S. is planning military action in Syria.

I immediately thought of a summer I spent at UNC Chapel Hill. My partner at the time fancied himself a revolutionary born too late for all the good protests. At a Franklin Street pub one night we were the only black couple at a happy hour. It is one of those college places where concoctions of the bar’s finest bottom shelf liquor is served in huge fishbowls…

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Open Letter To The Internet: This Miley Cyrus Thing Has Me Worried

I haven’t seen it either, but I saw it all over Twitter & FB.

Socialisation in action – again.

The Traveling Circus

Hi People of the Internet!

Based on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and every other social media platform ever invented, the most important thing that has happened in the last 24 hours is a performance by Miley Cyrus on MTV’s VMA Awards. I have the luxury of being in Japan where this was neither aired nor talked about nor if it was talked about could I understand it. But I looooooove the Internet so I’m well versed in the events. I even looked up some video footage!

Here is what I saw: I saw a 20 year old. Singing a song. Dancing around. To a concept someone else certainly envisioned and created and convinced her was a good idea. I saw her nearly naked, like somehow this should be shocking by now, and then I learned a painful first lesson about what ‘twerking’ actually means. It was probably in poor taste, certainly…

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Only one problem with the government’s list of top ten benefits fraudsters – it doesn’t exist

Socialisation at work – courtesy of the Fail & the Express.

Pride's Purge

(not satire – it’s the Daily Mail!)

The Mail and the Express yesterday had articles about an official list of the top ten benefits fraudsters in the country which they say was published by the government.

Just one little problem with it.

The list doesn’t seem to exist.

There doesn’t seem to be any official list of top ten benefits fraudsters published by the government.

There are no links in either the Mail or the Express articles to any government website where the official list is published. No list on the DWP website and no mention of it on the official DWP press office Twitter feed either.

The Mail specifically wrote that Iain Duncan Smith had decided to publish the list – but there is no mention of it on his website or anywhere else.

In fact the only sources for any official list are – the Mail and…

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From foster care into the sex trade

Traffick Alerts

Lawmakers are trying to make sure teenage sex trafficking victims get social services instead of criminal records

From foster care into the sex trade

By Charlotte Silver

Every year, federal and state governments pour millions of dollars into combatting sex trafficking through local and federal law enforcement agencies. But the emerging link between the child welfare system and child sex trafficking in the United States underscores the need for a new tactic, one that addresses the social origins of child sex trafficking.

At the end of July, the FBI’s Innocence Lost initiative, the wing of the agency tasked with addressing domestic child sex trafficking, conducted its annual three-day Operation Cross Country. During these 72 hours, federal agents across the country “recover” juvenile victims from sexual exploitation and arrest their exploiters. This year, the agency boasts that it saved 105 children and arrested 152 pimps. According to U.S. law, anyone under 18 and involved in the sex trade…

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