Friday, December 31, 2010

Start out 2011 with a Belly Laugh

If you would like a wonderful way to start the 2011 drama season I suggest you make your way to the Wakefield School in The Plains, Va for the independent school's extension of their holiday show, All In The Timing. The school added two more shows to the run on January 7 and 8 2011. The school is located just off exit 31 w on I66.

Here is another Cappie's review of the show.

Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Ivan Illich on Health Care....

I was thinking about health care this morning and bumped into these ideas from Ivan Illich, the radical former Jesuit, who usually thinks in ways that I find imaginative and creative.

Here are some thoughts:
Modern medicine is a negation of health. It isn't organized to serve human health, but only itself, as an institution. It makes more people sick than it heals.

I knew a doctor once who told me that to me "it was strep throat, but to him it was meat and potatoes." Illich reminded me of that idea. If we cured disease there would be no need for doctors. We cannot have that can we. especially if you are a member of the AMA.

Here are two more Illich thoughts:
Effective health care depends on self-care; this fact is currently heralded as if it were a discovery......Healthy people are those who live in healthy homes on a healthy diet; in an environment equally fit for birth, growth work, healing, and dying... Healthy people need no bureaucratic interference to mate, give birth, share the human condition and die.

Monday, December 27, 2010

A Thought from Paulo Friere

"Education either functions as an instrument which is used to facilitate integration of the younger generation into the logic of the present system and bring about conformity or it becomes the practice of freedom, the means by which men and women deal critically and creatively with reality and discover how to participate in the transformation of their world." — Paulo Freire (Pedagogy of the Oppressed)

I believe that education is the practice of freedom. The problem is that school is so often confused with education. School accomplishes the first part of the above quotation. It re-inforces the present and preserves the status quo. School is almost propaganda for the status quo. Education and learning come from the truth around you. Empowerment comes from the self discovery of that truth. We must all become self learners and self teachers with those around us. Learning liberates the spirit!!

"We should all be judged by what we do to empower other people."
-Bill Clinton 2010

Friday, December 24, 2010

Ivan Illich--revisit him

Many students, especially those who are poor, intuitively know what the schools do for them. They school them to confuse process and substance. Once these become blurred, a new logic is assumed: the more treatment there is, the better are the results; or, escalation leads to success. The pupil is thereby "schooled" to confuse teaching with learning, grade advancement with education, a diploma with competence, and fluency with the ability to say something new. His imagination is "schooled" to accept service in place of value. Medical treatment is mistaken for health care, social work for the improvement of community life, police protection for safety, military poise for national security, the rat race for productive work. Health, learning, dignity, independence, and creative endeavour are defined as little more than the performance of the institutions which claim to serve these ends, and their improvement is made to depend on allocating more resources to the management of hospitals, schools, and other agencies in question. Ivan Illich Deschooling Society (1973: 9)

Thursday, December 23, 2010

New Literacies

I hope that you enjoy this video. It looks pretty good from my stool! Please comment on it.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Government needs a Warrant to read EMail

The 6th US Circuit Court of Appeals ruled yesterday in US vs Warshak that the government needs a warrant to compell an ISP to turn over email to the government.

Given the fundamental similarities between email and traditional forms of communication [like postal mail and telephone calls], it would defy common sense to afford emails lesser Fourth Amendment protection.... It follows that email requires strong protection under the Fourth Amendment; otherwise the Fourth Amendment would prove an ineffective guardian of private communication, an essential purpose it has long been recognized to serve.... [T]he police may not storm the post office and intercept a letter, and they are likewise forbidden from using the phone system to make a clandestine recording of a telephone call--unless they get a warrant, that is. It only stands to reason that, if government agents compel an ISP to surrender the contents of a subscriber's emails, those agents have thereby conducted a Fourth Amendment search, which necessitates compliance with the warrant requirement

See the entire EFF article for all of the details.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

EFF News

In a decision issued yesterday, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the government must have a search warrant before it can seize and search emails stored by third party email service providers. Closely tracking arguments made by EFF in our amicus brief, the court found that email users have the same reasonable expectation of privacy in their stored email as they do in their phone calls and postal mail.

And today, the Third Circuit Court of Appeals agreed with EFF and refused the government's request to reconsider an earlier pro-privacy decision, which held that federal magistrates have the discretion to require the government to get a search warrant based on probable cause before obtaining cell phone location records. That decision, based on EFF's briefing and oral argument as a friend of the court, has implications far beyond cell phone location privacy. It could apply to a broad range of communications records - including the content of your emails, your web search or browsing histories, as well as the location of your phone

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Congressman Hoyer's response to previous Post

Dear Mr. Constantine,

Thank you for contacting me to share your views on S. 3804, the Combating Online Infringement and Counterfeits Act. I certainly appreciate your taking the time to make me aware of your concerns about this legislation.

S. 3804 would give the Justice Department an expedited process to crack down on websites that offer counterfeit materials or infringe on copyrighted content by offering the content without the consent of the copyright owner. The legislation would aim to regulate the distribution of copyrighted works and fight against online piracy. S. 3804 was introduced in the Senate by Senator Patrick Leahy of Vermont on September 20, 2010, and was referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee. You may be sure that I will keep your concerns in mind should this legislation be considered by the House of Representatives.

Thank you again for sharing your thoughts with me. I encourage you to visit my website at While there, you can sign up for the Hoyer Herald, access my voting record, and get information about important public issues. If I can be of further assistance, please do not hesitate to contact me.

With kindest regards, I am

Sincerely yours,
Steny Hoyer

Saturday, December 04, 2010

Combating Online Infringement and Counterfeits Act

There is a bill before the Congress of the United States which threatens to stiffle even further the free spread of information across the Internet. The Electronic Frontier Foundation has come out against the Bill and I believe that this bill needs to be defeated. I urge you to write to your member of Congress and U.S. Senators urging the defeat of this bill.

Thursday, December 02, 2010

New PodCast Fron Zach and Irbs......

Here is another podcast from two students at the Wakefield School in The Plains Va. This pcast appears weekly in the school's digital newspaper.