Tax Reform – Unearned Income

Anyone who has been around RJsCorner for very long knows what I think about unearned income. It is outrageous that money received that was not earned is often taxed at a lower rate than the money you earn be the sweat of your brow. To me, that is most fundamentally flawed part of our tax structure and needs to change. The vast majority of unearned income comes from inheritance taxes. Passing wealth from one generation to another is what is primarily responsible for our American Aristocracy and the resulting inequality. I know that the Republican Party, or at least what … Continue reading Tax Reform – Unearned Income

Self-Checkouts Kill Jobs

The graphic here came from one of my Facebook friends and I agree with her.  I know I am an advocate for automation but it is not always a good thing. This may be one of those times. Let me explain why. I know there is a big chunk of our American society who just don’t have the skills to compete in our very technology-driven workforce. Some never learned to take learning as a lifelong goal. Some had learning beaten out of them at an early age. Some are just too lazy to do the work that learning requires.   I … Continue reading Self-Checkouts Kill Jobs

Being Afraid of Minorities… Why??

Fear is what drives far too many of us in the US right now.  The majority of the most fearful live in the less populated rural areas of the country. You only need to look at the red/blue map to see that reality.  Here are some causes as I see it of this inordinate fear: For many of these folks fear is due to just not knowing others different than themselves. Due to their isolated conditions, they just have a much smaller worldview than many of us. Education is another factor. Almost twice as many urban Americans have college degrees … Continue reading Being Afraid of Minorities… Why??

Intolerance And Education…

“Intolerance is the first sign of inadequate education. An ill-educated person behaves with arrogant impatience, whereas truly profound education breeds humility”. —Alexander Solzhenitsyn I will come out of the closet here and admit that I get a weekly subscription from the “The Week” magazine which is a decidedly progressive publication. When I cam across this quote in the “Wit & Wisdom” column on the July 21st issue it got my attention. 72% of Democrats and Democrat-leaning Independents believe that colleges and universities have an overall positive effect on the country. But 58% of Republicans and Republican-leaning Independents feel these institutions … Continue reading Intolerance And Education…

Thinking Outside The Box On Education

  “Thinking outside the box” is a new sub-category within the Crayon Marks category. The term “thinking outside the box” entails a thinking process, which uses an unusual approach to a logical thinking structure. It´s a process which aims to escape relational reasoning,  and rising to another level. There is just too much stuff today where people say “That’s the way we have always done it.” To me, that is just an excuse for being too lazy to try to find something better. One of those areas is in our educational processes. I recently read some articles written one hundred years ago that show we … Continue reading Thinking Outside The Box On Education

When Robots Make Cars….

I know that robots have taken over many of the repetitive tasks from us humans. Many see that as stripping jobs away from those who don’t care to otherwise be ready for today’s workforce.  The mind-numbing jobs are being taken over my mindless robots and that is as it should be. Let’s take auto manufacturing as an example: Robots don’t make mistakes… They do the same thing over and over again because that is all they are programmed to do. Robots don’t know Monday from Friday…. They don’t take their eye off the task at hand because they are still … Continue reading When Robots Make Cars….

3 In 5 Americans Have No More That A High School Education

It surprised me to see Russia as having a higher percentage of young people with degrees than the U.S. But then I guess that is probably due to my ignorant view of that country. We in the U.S. have been lead to believe that everyone in Russia is poor, uneducated, and starving due to lack of opportunities in a communist system.  To see that they are actually more educated then we are is a cultural shock but not an unpleasant one at least to me. I need to spend some serious time learning more about Russia instead of just believing … Continue reading 3 In 5 Americans Have No More That A High School Education

Freestyle School….

As the new school year approaches, teachers have come to expect that many of their students will have forgotten some of what they learned earlier. It’s called summer learning loss, and some teachers believe it’s inevitable. Are they right?… The traditional educator’s remedy for summer learning loss is more of the same, more hours and more days of classes and, of course, summer school.  What if schools enlisted family members as partners to help teach the children? But suppose there is another solution.  That’s what’s happening here at Russell Byers Charter School in Philadelphia. For five weeks this summer, Sarah … Continue reading Freestyle School….

Wanting An Education

In the old days boys wanted an education. They even had reading, writing, and arithmetic, instead of football. Up to then boys had gone there for their heads and not their shoulders — Will Rogers August 26,1928 In the old days must have been before 1928! I would have figured it to be later than that but maybe what we have been doing since that time is to hone it to perfection.  I have seen so many articles around today about how boys just don’t do school very well. By school I mean as Will indicated reading, writing, and arithmetic.  … Continue reading Wanting An Education

A National Strategy For Education……

Legislation signed by Gov. Mike Pence makes Indiana the first state to step back from the standards that establish proficiency targets in math and reading….. But the national education standards have been the focus of vocal criticism from conservative grassroots groups, who believe Common Core amounts to a government takeover of education. Critics have said Indiana’s new standards are strikingly similar to the Common Core framework and the new legislation is little more than a change in name rather than substance, the Associated Press reports. SOURCE: Indiana Drops Common Core Education Standards | TIME.com. For those of you who might … Continue reading A National Strategy For Education……

Falling Behind By Running In Place…

“Our scores are stagnant. We’re not seeing any improvement for our 15-year-olds,” said Jack Buckley, commissioner at the National Center for Education Statistics, the research arm of the U.S. Department of Education. “But our ranking is flipping because a lot of these other countries are improving.” The test scores offer fresh evidence for those who argue that the United States is losing ground to competitors in the global market and others who say a decade’s worth of school reform has done little to improve educational outcomes. “While the intentions may have been good, a decade of top-down, test-based schooling created … Continue reading Falling Behind By Running In Place…

A Paradigm Shift…..

I think I first happened upon the words paradigm shift sometime in the 1980s. Here are some of the words that Wikipedia use to describe it: The term “paradigm shift” has found uses in other contexts, representing the notion of a major change in a certain thought-pattern — a radical change in personal beliefs, complex systems or organizations, replacing the former way of thinking or organizing with a radically different way of thinking or organizing. Paradigm shift don’t happen very often in this world. In fact they are quite rare. Lets face it change is very hard for many of … Continue reading A Paradigm Shift…..

On Both Sides of the Fence….

To the U.S. technology industry, there’s a dramatic shortfall in the number of Americans skilled in computer programming and engineering that is hampering business. To unions and some Democrats, it’s more sinister: The push by Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg to expand the number of visas for high-tech foreign workers is an attempt to dilute a lucrative job market with cheap, indentured labor. The answer is somewhere in between, depending as much on new technologies and the U.S. education system’s ability to keep up as on the immigration law itself. But the sliver of computer-related jobs inside the U.S. that might be … Continue reading On Both Sides of the Fence….

Unemployment vs Education Level….

  Unemployment Rate by Education Level In 1992, the BLS began tracking unemployment rates by education level. Highlighted below are the unemployment rates for the following four groups…. All groups consist of individuals 25 years old or higher. Education Level Achieved September 2012 Month/Month (Points) Year/Year (Points) Less than High School 11.3% -0.7 -2.6 High School Grad No College 8.7% -0.1 -0.9 Some College or Associate Degree 6.5% -0.1 -1.9 Bachelor’s Degree or Higher 4.1% 0.0 -0.1 It is no secret that the lower the education level the higher the unemployment rate. We are told that employers are out looking for … Continue reading Unemployment vs Education Level….

The jobs are there, the education is not…

Source: The jobs are there, the education is not – USATODAY.com. This disparity has come to be known as the “skills gap” — the divide between the jobs American businesses need to fill and the jobs Americans are qualified to do. Research shows that approximately 90% of the jobs in the fastest-growing occupations in our economy require some level of postsecondary education and training. And 80 million to 90 million adults today — about half of our current workforce — do not have the skills needed to acquire or advance in jobs that pay a family-sustaining wage. Where once we had … Continue reading The jobs are there, the education is not…

The Education Gap….

I just finished reading the September/October issue of Sojourners Magazine and in it was an article about education. One of the most remembered quotes from that article is “The achievement gap due to income inequality is nearly twice as large as the racial achievement gap”.  It went on to say that most of the underperforming schools are found in low-income neighborhoods. Education is still pretty much a State controlled environment but I know this is true for Indiana where I have lived most of my life.

Schools in Indiana are pretty much funded from local property taxes.  So the higher the income area the more the school system gets to educate the kids. I grew up and am still living in a small town rural area of the State. When I was in high school the only guidance counselor we had as a local farmer who also taught FFA classes. I doubt he ever had any kind of training to help kids determine what was the best career field to enter.  We didn’t have any advanced math classes beyond trigonometry so when I went to college at Purdue I had to play catch-up with remedial classes in that area as well as a few others. Continue reading “The Education Gap….”

Gender Roles….

I noticed in our local paper recently that there were about 30 young people from our local high school who were inducted into the National Honor Society. Seven were guys, the rest were girls.  This seems pretty indicative of what is happening in the U.S. the last few decades. Girls are the ones who see educations as important and guys, for the most part, think it is a waste of time. Girls are pretty much the ones who stay in school and guys make up the majority of those who currently drop out of high school. It is a fact … Continue reading Gender Roles….

Welcome To The Future?

Source: Mooresville School District, a Laptop Success Story – NYTimes.com. The district’s graduation rate was 91 percent in 2011, up from 80 percent in 2008. On state tests in reading, math and science, an average of 88 percent of students across grades and subjects met proficiency standards, compared with 73 percent three years ago. Attendance is up, dropouts are down. Mooresville ranks 100th out of 115 districts in North Carolina in terms of dollars spent per student — $7,415.89 a year — but it is now third in test scores and second in graduation rates. I know change is difficult for … Continue reading Welcome To The Future?

We’re Number One……

Most people, especially those in the U.S. like to proudly proclaim we are number one. We shout it from the rooftops. We scream it about our favorite sports team. We are often caught with that silly large rubber hand to show our pride. We as a country are number one in several areas. We’re number one when it comes to our war machine. Heck, you could combine all the other war machines in the world together and that would still not knock us out of first place. We spend many times more in this country than in country in the … Continue reading We’re Number One……

U.S. vs. the World

I started getting the National Geographic magazine again. I used to look at them regularly when I was in grade school and high school many years ago but haven’t noticed them much since then. Many joke that older people like myself get NG because of the larger print.   Personally speaking there is probably some truth to that. But it does have a lot of very interesting topics in between the covers and I have more time to read them now. This month there is also a large wall poster about the "World of Seven Billion”. I will spend a … Continue reading U.S. vs. the World