Posts by TontoKowalski

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  • Mississippi Runoff Poll LIVE Thread

    06/24/2014 6:44:49 PM PDT · 507 of 1,377
    TontoKowalski to Political Junkie Too

    Chris has got this. Jones not reporting anything, and not enough precincts remaining in Hinds and Harrison Counties for Cochran to overcome that bomb.

  • Mississippi Runoff Poll LIVE Thread

    06/24/2014 6:17:41 PM PDT · 351 of 1,377
    TontoKowalski to Viennacon
    Hinds is already half reported. If trend holds, Cochran picks up another 3500 lead there.

    Now we see if the rest of the state can whittle that down and reverse the number.

    No reporting from Jones County yet.

  • The Most Laid-Back College Majors

    06/24/2014 9:16:33 AM PDT · 44 of 50
    TontoKowalski to wbill
    I'm working hard to be sure that WBill Jr doesn't make the same mistakes I made. I'm sure that he'll make different ones, though.

    I have to laugh, because it is true. Junior certainly spent more time in the books than I did. He's taking the summer off. Well deserved.

    However... he's making up for lost time this summer in terms of running the roads. Maybe a little too much partying with buddies. I'm not over-the-top concerned about this (really it's minimal compared to my freshman exploits), except that he knows I'll kill him if he drives while drinking. The boys seem to have a little group of girls that are perfectly happy serving as DD.

    His MOTHER on the other hand... well, if she catches him stumbling in, then woe be upon him. He's on his own in that event. My loyalty to my son only goes so far.

  • The Most Laid-Back College Majors

    06/23/2014 11:30:18 PM PDT · 40 of 50
    TontoKowalski to Neidermeyer
    If you have a degree and can pass the Praxis exams (particularly the content knowledge exam), you can be qualified to teach. I taught as a second career, and went from considering the idea in April to teaching in a classroom in August.

    There is a shortage of math and science teachers in nearly every state, and it's actually not that difficult to break into the profession. I wanted to shift my classes to history, but a school with a good math teacher isn't going to let him switch to history.

  • The Most Laid-Back College Majors

    06/23/2014 3:31:03 PM PDT · 38 of 50
    TontoKowalski to wbill
    Thanks for your kind words about Tonto Jr.

    He's worked hard, and has pieced together enough scholarships to earn a ride. It's tough on him, because their renewals are dependent on grades. It was all A's except 1 B the first semester, but all B's except one A the second.

    One thing is for sure: He's now grateful that I insisted he take the most demanding courses he could in high school, including the dual enrollments.

    To paraphrase my boy, "It's hard, but at least I'm not trying to do it while writing a paper on Hamlet."

    For the life of me, I don't understand why more of the "academic elite" students don't take more dual enrollment courses in high school. He might have made a 93 instead of a 99 for his senior English, but the payoff has been tremendous.

  • The Most Laid-Back College Majors

    06/23/2014 8:17:06 AM PDT · 17 of 50
    TontoKowalski to wbill
    My son is a computer engineering major. He'll start his sophomore year in the fall.

    As a matter of ROUTINE, he spent 3 hours every school night on his studies, and more on the weekend.

    That said, his freshmen classes were difficult because he took a good deal of dual enrollment classes in high school to knock out a lot of the core curriculum (English Comp, Sociology,Psychology, etc.). There wasn't a lot of room for "coasting" in his freshman schedule, because he had already earned the "easy" credits.

    He had been told that the freshman engineering, programming, and calculus classes were always packed at the beginning of the semester, but that the herd would thin quickly. Whoever told him that was right.

  • Lamar Alexander Amnesty Vote Encouraged Illegal Alien Invasion

    06/19/2014 8:24:35 AM PDT · 9 of 9
    TontoKowalski to patriot08
    Is anyone aware of recent polling in Lamar!'s race?

    I'm hoping that Chris McDaniel's likely success in Mississippi will shake things up in my state.

  • China not in World Cup, still crazy for it

    06/17/2014 11:27:51 PM PDT · 4 of 110
    TontoKowalski to Berlin_Freeper
    I'm of a generation that did not grow up with soccer. My son has, and my first soccer match was one of his games. What struck me most was that the players were in constant motion. They moved. They ran. All the time.

    While I've never loved the game, it is easy to see why the appeal is growing. There are very few stoppages of play. No huddles like in football. No continual stopping the clock for free throws. No waiting for something to happen like in baseball.

    In my small southern town, football is still king, but baseball is dying. It's hard for Little League to put together enough teams. Soccer, on the other hand, is HUGE. Lots of kids play.

    Off topic: when I lived in Maryland, lacrosse was a big sport. I've never understood why that hasn't become a more popular sport in the South.

  • Democrats Could Win Eric Cantor’s House Seat—With Black Votes

    06/11/2014 5:33:09 PM PDT · 32 of 57
    TontoKowalski to KevinB
    Thank you for the correction!

    I didn't realize my goof until you pointed it out...

  • Democrats Could Win Eric Cantor’s House Seat—With Black Votes

    06/11/2014 5:21:54 PM PDT · 17 of 57
    TontoKowalski to 2ndDivisionVet
    I don't know anything in particular about how Virginia's House seats are situated, but Cantor was the minority leader, probably the most powerful Virginian in Washington.

    If I were a betting man, I'd wager my house that his district has been carefully sculpted to make it VERY safe for Republicans.

    Cantor just assumed the Republican had to be HIM.

  • 23-Year-Old Haverford College Grad Is Architect of Stunning Eric Cantor Upset

    06/11/2014 5:11:42 PM PDT · 5 of 17
    TontoKowalski to Kid Shelleen
    I suppose there's something to be said for youthful enthusiasm and a fearless approach.

    If young guns start pushing the old establishment bulls out of the trough, then all hell is REALLY going to break loose.

    I can't wait.

  • Gloves off: Thad Cochran calls Chris McDaniel a dangerous extremist

    06/10/2014 8:35:26 PM PDT · 29 of 58
    TontoKowalski to Viennacon
    The last gasps of a man fading into irrelevancy. Cochran sullies any good will he might have left.

    This. Absolutely.

    On primary night I suggested that he might concede the runoff, taking an honorable exit from the political stage. It would have been best. He's not a blatantly dishonorable man; it's just that his time has passed and his viewpoint is not in keeping with the majority of his party. I would have wished him well.

    But now. THIS. Thad, get your sorry entitled ass out of Washington before we get the tar and feathers.

  • Sen. Tim Scott wins GOP primary in South Carolina

    06/10/2014 8:16:35 PM PDT · 33 of 38
    TontoKowalski to maine-iac7
    The key word in the quote is "elected."

    Yes, Scott is a sitting Senator representing South Carolina, but he was appointed to that post by the governor when Sen Jim DeMint resigned his seat. He wasn't elected. That won't happen until November.

  • Bergdahl Release Reveals a Presidency Out of Control

    06/09/2014 7:35:07 AM PDT · 12 of 39
    TontoKowalski to hummingbird
    They look so joyful. Slaps the faces of the families whose soldiers' sons and maybe daughters died to help free their jackleg son.

    I don't begrudge the parents their joy at the release of their son. No, my fury is directed at the deserter and Obama.

  • Can Thad Cochran get Democrats to pull him over the finish line?

    06/09/2014 7:30:45 AM PDT · 20 of 41
    TontoKowalski to cotton1706
    Frankly, I don't see democrats caring so much about Cochran that they'll come out in big numbers.

    They don't need big numbers. 5000 would do nicely, if the primary is any indication.

    In this VERY tight election, anything at all could have a deciding impact.

    FWIW, I have an old college friend who is some sort of mover-and-shaker in the Miss Dem party, and judging from his Facebook posts, the Dems are pushing for McDaniel, not Cochran.

    Rightly or wrongly (and I think wrongly) they believe their guy can beat Chris.

  • Hole in the Diversity Grail

    06/04/2014 8:19:07 AM PDT · 9 of 15
    TontoKowalski to Ohioan
    Look, for example, of the process by which a High School diploma, with respect to basic subjects, such as English usage, gradually deteriorated to something less significant than a sixth grade education in 1900.

    As a high school teacher, I can tell you with some authority that a high school diploma is becoming worthless. No Child Left Behind was a mistake. It may have been well intentioned, but it was a mistake. Virtually the only metric that high school administrators are concerned with is "graduation rate." Everything else... proficiency on state exams, ACT/SAT scores, honors' diplomas... is completely secondary to that. Those things afford bragging rights if they come out well, but in the long run, it's graduation rate that matters.

    No effort is too much, or too expensive, to drag the bottom-dwelling potheads across the line to keep the grad rate up.

  • Tea Party Forces A Runoff in Mississippi: McDaniel and Cochran fail to win a majority

    06/04/2014 6:49:37 AM PDT · 10 of 59
    TontoKowalski to SoFloFreeper
    "Senator Cochran has a small lead..."

    Really? Does he have inside info? Is he knowledgeable about the votes that haven't been counted? Does he believe there are votes remaining to be cast?

    Or is he just talking out his ass?

  • 2014 LIVE Mississippi Senate Primaries Results

    06/03/2014 9:35:38 PM PDT · 782 of 975
    TontoKowalski to Viennacon
    Covington gave McDaniel 70%, and an 1100 vote boost!

    I don't think Holmes will yield similar results for Cochran.

  • 2014 LIVE Mississippi Senate Primaries Results

    06/03/2014 9:19:56 PM PDT · 744 of 975
    TontoKowalski to Viennacon
    Chris needs to hold this lead, no matter how slim, to further push Cochran into a concession without a runoff.

    It's conceivable that Cochran would concede if he were to finish 2nd... I don't think he would if he finished 1st.

  • 2014 LIVE Mississippi Senate Primaries Results

    06/03/2014 9:03:47 PM PDT · 709 of 975
    TontoKowalski to Viennacon
    The results tonight will likely show a virtual dead heat. If you look at the counties that are not fully complete, the margin of victory could be a couple hundred votes.

    Now, I want to be sure I understand the absentee procedure... if none of those have been counted/reported yet, that should be very good news for McDaniel. I seriously doubt many people were going to take the bother to absentee vote for Cochran.

  • 2014 LIVE Mississippi Senate Primaries Results

    06/03/2014 8:37:39 PM PDT · 626 of 975
    TontoKowalski to Viennacon
    No Covington doesn't have the population of Jones County... so there won't be that much of a vote differential. But it WILL be headed in the right direction.

    I figure the rest of Hinds will give up a net 1000 votes for Cochran. I don't know if Chris can avoid the run-off.

    I wouldn't be shocked if Cochran conceded the raced without a runoff. He's 76, and this race has to be a shock to him after decades of running virtually unopposed. More than half of his own party in the state voted for someone else. He still has something of an honorable reputation within the state, and I think he'd like to end it that way, rather than being dumped in a pointless run-off.

  • 2014 LIVE Mississippi Senate Primaries Results

    06/03/2014 7:55:42 PM PDT · 406 of 975
    TontoKowalski to Viennacon

    This is quickly getting out of control for Cochran and Company. Hinds can’t manufacture THAT many votes.

  • 2014 LIVE Mississippi Senate Primaries Results

    06/03/2014 7:42:48 PM PDT · 348 of 975
    TontoKowalski to Viennacon
    They are in the heart of South Central Mississippi, bordering Jones County (Covington) or very near (Perry).

    I'm betting they go for McDaniel in a big way.

  • 2014 LIVE Mississippi Senate Primaries Results

    06/03/2014 7:39:33 PM PDT · 329 of 975
    TontoKowalski to Hoodat
    And NO votes counted yet from Covington or Perry County!

    This race may be won.

  • 2014 LIVE Mississippi Senate Primaries Results

    06/03/2014 7:23:03 PM PDT · 260 of 975
    TontoKowalski to Hawthorn
    With 90% of Forrest in, McDaniel is WINNING that county. Jones has less than 30% precincts reporting.

    This is still winnable, never mind forcing a run-off.

  • 2014 LIVE Mississippi Senate Primaries Results

    06/03/2014 7:10:44 PM PDT · 232 of 975
    TontoKowalski to Viennacon
    Where are you finding these County returns? They're critical to understanding the direction of this race. Thanks for reporting them!

    I also think Jones and Forrest counties will be important.

  • 2014 LIVE Mississippi Senate Primaries Results

    06/03/2014 7:06:12 PM PDT · 219 of 975
    TontoKowalski to Viennacon

    I wonder how much of the Coast is remaining to be counted. Gene Taylor is beating Steve Pallazo in MS-4. So... they’re not afraid to throw the bum out... although that’s really a race between two bums... so they’re not afraid to throw the incumbent out is more accurate.

  • 2014 LIVE Mississippi Senate Primaries Results

    06/03/2014 7:02:11 PM PDT · 208 of 975
    TontoKowalski to Viennacon

    So, the question is... can McDaniel make up 3300 votes with half the state remaining... but Hinds already counted (for the most part)? I guess we’re about to find out.

  • 2014 LIVE Mississippi Senate Primaries Results

    06/03/2014 6:51:12 PM PDT · 189 of 975
    TontoKowalski to Viennacon

    If half of Hinds County is in with only 38% of the state reporting... this is going to be VERY close.

  • Man With Learning Difficulties to Be Sterilised in Unprecedented Court Ruling

    08/18/2013 6:50:12 AM PDT · 121 of 137
    TontoKowalski to wardaddy
    First off... good luck with your son during these upcoming years! It's a wild ride raising a teenage boy. Mine is 18, and things have gotten a little better... at least he's smarter... I hope.

    About the older girls... good on his Mama. Didn't it used to be older boys who tried to debauch younger girls? It seems things have gone backwards in that regard, at least in my experience.

    I'm not advocating sexual relations among the mentally retarded. However... and I know this sounds crass... they still have the primal urge to breed... but they don't have the capacity to understand the consequences. Unless they are kept under constant surveillance, opportunities will arise, most often with others with the same condition.

    People who have not been around challenged people may not understand. Retarded people are not generally kept in state schools or mental hospitals. More often than not, they live at home with their parents, they often have jobs of some kind, and are "mainstreamed" into normal society as much as possible. Sometimes, and it looks as though this is the case, they form loving pair-bonds. These people don't live under a microscope where they are constantly monitored.

    Common sense says that responsible caregivers should be given some leeway in protecting them from disastrous pregnancy.

    I know we tend to bash the judiciary around here, but in reading what the judge had to say, it sounds as though she rendered a reasonable decision based on the facts of this individual case.

  • Man With Learning Difficulties to Be Sterilised in Unprecedented Court Ruling

    08/17/2013 8:33:19 PM PDT · 115 of 137
    TontoKowalski to sarasmom
    I agree, but to be fair...

    The snippet, which comes from the beginning of the article, could lead some to believe that the man is being forced to undergo court-ordered sterilization against his vehement protests and those of his family.

    I tend to make these things personal:

    I have an adult extended family member who is mentally handicapped. Although he may have a childlike mind, he has a man's body and a man's interest in the opposite sex.

    He is raised by his widowed mother, now elderly. Part of his therapy is that he has a job and is placed in other circumstances where he interacts with other people, often others (women) with his same limitations. He doesn't live in a glass jar.

    If he were to father a child, there is no question of his ability to raise it. I suppose his mother would take on the task. Not to be cruel, but she's already raising a 40 year old child...

    I do not know, because it is none of my business, but perhaps he has undergone a vasectomy as well. I think if he were my son, I would want that for him... and for me.

  • Man With Learning Difficulties to Be Sterilised in Unprecedented Court Ruling

    08/17/2013 5:36:34 PM PDT · 112 of 137
    TontoKowalski to Romulus
    My reaction to the snippet is very different from my reaction after reading the entire article.

    The disabled couple already have a child, which his parents are raising. The disabled man himself says that he does not want any children. The man's parents want the man to have a vasectomy. There seems to be agreement that the couple is mentally unable to manage the intricacies of birth control.

    The couples' caretakers agree that the first baby, which the couple was unable to care for, seriously damaged a beneficial relationship that all agreed was in the best interest to continue.

    I can't quite figure out what has caused the issue, but I think it's because the parents aren't his legal guardians, and he's mentally unfit to make medical decisions regarding elective surgery on his own.

    The judge's ruling was specifically points out the difficulty is removing a man's fertility, and it made reference to Eugenics and how this case should not be viewed as a landmark, but rather a response in dealing with a very specific case.

    It sounds to me that the judge applied common sense and compassion in interpreting the law, which is commendable.

  • Atlanta cold snap: Why is it sweater weather in the South?

    08/17/2013 6:16:43 AM PDT · 30 of 52
    TontoKowalski to M Kehoe
    I knew a girl once who had a tilt. She had one leg. Her name was Eileen.

    I knew a girl like that, only she was Japanese.

    Her name was Irene.

  • Raw: Obama Tees Off Vacation at Golf Course

    08/11/2013 4:55:34 PM PDT · 25 of 34
    TontoKowalski to Zuse
    I was frequently paired with a regular, an older gentleman, at my home course years ago. He played with three clubs and a putter.

    He changed the clubs out so he always had something different in the bag. He was a dependable score of 85.

    He carried his clubs in something resembling a child's golf bag.

    Although he didn't run the course, he shared my contempt for slow play.

  • Raw: Obama Tees Off Vacation at Golf Course

    08/11/2013 4:26:59 PM PDT · 20 of 34
    TontoKowalski to NormsRevenge
    I don't begrudge a man, any man, a round of golf or two...

    It can't be 100+ rounds, or he wouldn't suck as bad.

    I haven't seen video of his full swing, but that chip was pitiful, and the putting stroke was something to shield from the eyes of young children.

    W in his prime would have cleaned his clock.

    If I'm ever president, I'm appointing a pro golfer as a fitness czar. It's a game for life, a healthy outdoor pastime, especially if walking the course.

    Don't worry about the cost. I'm doing away with the Dept of Ed to make room in the budget.

  • Oprah Winfrey plays the racial card for no reason

    08/11/2013 4:11:42 PM PDT · 62 of 66
    TontoKowalski to ClearBlueSky
    I suppose she's got every right to be as demanding and wasteful of her money as any white celebrity, as well as to live like a sultan while berating the little people, just like Babs Streisand.

    Regarding the incident itself, my opinions are shaded by my own experiences while working upscale retail in college, and my predisposition is not favorable towards Oprah.

  • Hint: It rhymes with bash - Please come to our wedding: RSVP with cash

    08/11/2013 11:14:00 AM PDT · 36 of 51
    TontoKowalski to GeronL
    Cash is the normal wedding gift in Asia I think, to help pay for it. I have seen Asian TV programs where those holding the wedding give prizes to the guests,

    Lived in Japan twice during my service. We went to a traditional Japanese wedding... WOW. I don't know how normal people pay for it over there.

    There was a traditional Japanese service for family and very close friends only, delux kimonos that had to have been very expensive. This was followed by a "western" type service, bride in flowing white gown, groom in tuxedo...

    After the sit-down banquet and orchestra... finally time to go home. Guests were given a gift bag on the way out to thank them for spending the day with the couple... and it had an assortment of not-cheap presents... clocks, little Waterford figurines, pen/pencil sets, very expensive looking chopsticks and bowls...

  • Hint: It rhymes with bash - Please come to our wedding: RSVP with cash

    08/11/2013 11:05:37 AM PDT · 33 of 51
    I forgot to add that Mrs. K was also a fair hand at calligraphy, and she hand lettered all the invitations. Granted, it wasn't a huge wedding, but she wanted the person who got the invite to feel special. I'm sure she spent more time on those than would have been warranted merely to avoid the expense of printed invites.

    Our friends all took tons of photographs, and then got together and put them in a book for us.

    We treasure that book in a way that I don't think we would staged professional wedding photos.

  • Hint: It rhymes with bash - Please come to our wedding: RSVP with cash

    08/11/2013 10:54:27 AM PDT · 30 of 51
    TontoKowalski to TexasBarak
    I'm noticing a trend.

    People who had relatively simple, do-it-yourself weddings and receptions seem to enjoy them more.

    The last Big To Do wedding I attended was a contrast to this. The bride was so nervous and worked up over all the little details, I thought she was going to be sick.

    When we got married, we almost eloped, but decided together that we wanted a church wedding so that our mothers could attend. I'm glad we did now.

    However, we both agreed that we didn't want all the hoopla of a large wedding. Our chapel wedding was very short. We only spoke one word during the ceremony... "yes." We had told the preacher we wanted to speak as little as humanly possible... he said he could condense that down to "do you take..." but we had to verbally answer in at least one word. LOL

    We were so blessed with friends who pitched in on planning and carrying out the reception. And, as I said before... people still talk about what a great time they had.

    When's the last time someone went to a high-dollar catered sit-down reception kind of wedding and thought to themselves afterwards, "Wow, I had a GREAT time at that wedding!"

    For me, it's generally, "Well, that's over. Let's order a pizza."

  • Hint: It rhymes with bash - Please come to our wedding: RSVP with cash

    08/11/2013 7:39:20 AM PDT · 15 of 51
    TontoKowalski to DYngbld
    When Mrs. Kowalski and I tied the knot, we each had two attendants. My men wore a church suit. Her ladies wore a nice dress they already had. We were married in a chapel, and I think I paid the minister $100. I wore my military uniform and she bought a very nice knee-length white dress that suited her tastes. I doubt it cost $200.

    The ceremony was short and sweet. Probably 15 minutes from her walking up the aisle to man and wife departing.

    Good friends (they were both attendants) hosted the reception in their back yard. We had an excellent country western 2-man band that played at a bar I liked, plywood laid on the grass for dancing, sandwiches ordered from the grocery deli, and a keg in the garage. The wedding cake was from a local bakery... maybe $200.

    To this day, I have never been to a wedding/reception that I enjoyed more. Our guests had a wonderful time (they passed the hat among themselves to keep the band another hour... when we booked, we only got the guys for 3 hours, thinking it would be more than enough), we didn't break the bank for our church wedding and reception, and it was relaxed and fun. I'd guess that all expenses were MAYBE $1200.

    We specifically asked for no gifts, buy our friends were so generous. We still have many nice things that we received as wedding gifts, and we use them.

    Of course, Mrs. K and I were in our 30's when we hitched, so we were past the starry-eyed phase where girls dream of the Sound of Music wedding. Even today, I wouldn't trade our memories for a cathedral wedding with pipe organs, a sit-down banquet, and an orchestra at the reception.

  • Gay couple seeks spousal privilege protection in Kentucky murder trial

    08/11/2013 6:30:36 AM PDT · 6 of 23
    TontoKowalski to RightGeek
    Goodness. The picture on the left is a woman?

    My first thought was that it was the victim... and I was wondering how that could be when the article said he was over 60.

  • New York's Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand builds bridges with GOP, raises profile in Washington

    08/11/2013 6:16:43 AM PDT · 37 of 48
    TontoKowalski to Nifster
    Of course it could be that he agrees with her in this particular case.

    Thanks for the common sense. It's not as though we're FOR sexual assault in the military.

    I'm not sure whether I support this bill or not... but my concerns rest with "chain of command issues" and not whether the bill is sponsored by a democrat.

    Very informally, I've gotten hints that sexual assault incidents are rising, and many are homosexual assaults.

  • Mystery From the Grave Beside Oswald’s, Solved

    08/11/2013 5:17:34 AM PDT · 19 of 41
    TontoKowalski to Jet Jaguar
    I ran across this article last night, and it sparked a googling interest for me.

    Oswald's grave marker is not the original, but I'm unable to find anything on when and why the change in the marker was made. My guess is that it was done to make it more discreet, but I haven't seen that his wife signed on to that. I wonder if she's even alive.

    I did find out that Oswald's mother is on the other side of him, but she doesn't have a marker of any sort.

  • The $4 Million Teacher (is this Korean model the future of education in the U.S.?)

    08/04/2013 12:44:47 PM PDT · 26 of 34
    TontoKowalski to rfreedom4u
    Of the classes my son took last year, he enjoyed the purely online version the least.

    He most liked the hybrid I described above, where he still benefitted from lecture and interaction with the professor... I was going to say personal interaction... but he was on a computer screen.

    He generally "attended" from his bedroom or the dining room table.

  • The $4 Million Teacher (is this Korean model the future of education in the U.S.?)

    08/04/2013 10:54:47 AM PDT · 10 of 34
    TontoKowalski to RoosterRedux
    Last year my son took a college class (he was a HS senior at the time) that was very interesting.

    Students met at a set time, but it was an online meeting. The professor lectured, provided the slides that accompanied the lecture, answered student questions that were asked during the class.

    The papers were submitted online, the exams were taken/graded online. I wonder how many students that professor was teaching for that class, and where they all were. Heck, I even wonder where he was.

    I thought it was a good concept. The convenience of an online class (not having to travel to a brick-and-mortar) combined with the goodness of lectures and Q/A.

  • Playboy dropped from US army bases (they dropped Sponge Bob, too!!)

    08/02/2013 6:07:59 AM PDT · 40 of 45
    TontoKowalski to markomalley
    He said that news-stand sales of most consumer magazines were falling steadily as online alternatives proliferated. Sales of the "adult sophisticate" category of magazines at the exchanges had declined 86 per cent since 1998, he said.

    The morality people may be claiming a victory, and perhaps it is, but this looks like a purely business decision.

    Post/Base Exchanges are "for profit" enterprises, unlike the Commissaries. The profits fund the Welfare and Recreation programs. Granted, generally speaking, service families benefit from good prices and no sales tax, but Exchanges are out to make a profit. The more profit, the more that goes into the Rec Fund.

    Just like in any retail establishment, if it doesn't sell, they won't stock it forever.

    It's not like they were making a political point when they quit carrying "The New York Review of Books" or "English Gardens." Like "Playboy" those simply don't sell enough to warrant carrying.

  • Smithsonian director wants Trayvon Martin’s hoodie

    08/01/2013 9:08:02 AM PDT · 61 of 61
    TontoKowalski to max americana
    Yep, the Air and Space Museum was my favorite, too, but there are hidden surprises throughout.

    Once when my parents were visiting us, we saw the bottom floor of the National History museum. They had an exhibit of antique farming vehicles... old tractors and hay rakes and such.

    Dad loved it, and we walked around looking at everything for two hours.

    And who couldn't love the dinosaurs in the Natural History Museum?

    I even liked the art museums, because they tended to be quieter and cooler during the summer. It was nice to have a moment of quiet reflection and rest in the midst of the crowds.

    I love the quiet rural life I live now, but sometimes miss all the good things that Washington had to offer.

  • A brave Baltimore teacher speaks the truth about schools, students

    08/01/2013 8:58:58 AM PDT · 60 of 86
    TontoKowalski to Carry_Okie
    There is plenty of blame to go around.

    I work with some enormously dedicated teachers. The best essentially work seven days a week. Some of them left much higher-paying jobs in the private sector, because they know the value of education. These teachers do so much to help their students, inside and outside the classroom.

    I also work with some duds, and every honest teacher can probably say the same thing. They are weak in their subject area, lazy, and won't go the extra inch... much less the extra mile... for their kids.

    Likewise, we have wonderful parents who support our school, and have laid down expectations with their children. On the other end of the spectrum are the parents who are completely disconnected from their children, who won't follow their children's progress (and then bitch to high heaven when things don't turn out well), who excuse criminal conduct by their children.

    Also, the disintegration of the family in general hinders efforts at school. So many of my students who struggle academically or behaviorally are not in two-parent homes. It can't be coincidence.

  • A brave Baltimore teacher speaks the truth about schools, students

    08/01/2013 7:51:14 AM PDT · 40 of 86
    TontoKowalski to
    Expelling the criminal children... excellent start.

    One of the things that has baffled me as a teacher is that we seem to go out of our way to keep criminals in our schools. I'm not speaking metaphorically when I say criminals.

    My school has kids who've been arrested for drug sales, breaking and entering, assault (serious, not a schoolboy fight).

    Don't get me wrong. We have great students in our school, but the small percentage of criminals takes up a hugely disproportionate amount of administrative time, disciplinary actions, failures...

    I can relate to those who say that school is the best place for THEM, but having them in the school isn't the best thing for the REST of the students.

  • Smithsonian director wants Trayvon Martin’s hoodie

    08/01/2013 7:10:03 AM PDT · 59 of 61
    TontoKowalski to max americana
    Supposedly this racist POS director wants it for the ghetto wing or Afro American wing of the Smithsonian so most probably it will end up at the section where whites have no intention of looking at.

    For those that may not have visited:

    The African American History Museum (part of the Smithsonian complex) was not built on the National Mall with the majority of Smithsonian museums. It was built in Anacostia, which most regard as "not the best neighborhood."

    Because it was inconvenient for most tourists to visit, and also because it was in a somewhat dangerous neighborhood, I don't think they attracted many visitors.

    I won't argue whether we need an African American Museum (or an American Indian museum, for that matter), but it smacked of unintended racism to build the museum there. I'm sure they meant for it to be an uplifting investment in the community, but it was not a place a typical middle-class visitor to Washington would venture.

    Now they've changed the name to a community museum, or something of that nature, and they're building a new one on the Mall.

    Off-topic: I hope it's more successful than the Museum of the American Indian (I think that's the name), which is probably the most boring of the Mall museums, at least for the typical tourist. I believe that one is more scholarly in nature. The times I was there, you could sense the impatience of people to go see the moon rock or the Hope Diamond or the Star Spangled Banner... the more exciting exhibits.