Wednesday, December 29, 2021

Christmas Aint Over Until the Christmas Season is Over

Christmas is not merely a one-day event but a season. And the season continues through the Twelve Days of Christmas, which end on the Feast of the Epiphany—January 6th 

Yesterday was the day of the Massacre of the Holy Innocents 

Holy Innocents

and today is the Presentation of the Lord, for example

The Presentation of the Lord

And the Word goes on and on and on 

The older Church calendar, the Christmas season goes all the way through February 2nd, the Feast of Candlemas. Also called the Purification of Our Lady, or the Presentation of Our Lord, this feast commemorates the day Our Lady went to the Temple to fulfill the requirements of the Mosaic Law forty days after Our Lord’s birth. 

Christmas is a season, not just a day. The Church invites us to celebrate this most glorious mystery of our redemption with weeks of rejoicing. Another happy effect of this arrangement is that we are able to observe Advent with a certain reserve, penitence, and anticipation—to use it as a true spiritual preparation for Christmas joy and festivities." 

Even though the world forgets Christmas on December 26th, we are encourage  to keep those decorations up and continue exulting with the angels at the coming of the Savior to earth!

You can keep your whole year focused on Christ and the beautiful seasons of His Church with a 2022 Saints Calendar & 16 Month Planner. Featuring classic art, reminders of feast days and holy days, and fascinating Catholic traditions, this is the perfect accessory for a Catholic desk at home or in the office. Available today at The Catholic Company!

Monday, December 27, 2021



"See the Virgin is delivered
In a cold and crowded stall
Mirror of the Father's glory
Lies beside her in the straw
He is Mercy's incarnation
Marvel at this miracle!" - Glorious impossible by Bill Gaither Vocal Band

Now, I have experienced over one half dozen miracles. In at least two cases, the outcome was not what I hoped or prayed for, but I'm sure it was for the best.
Why the story about miracles from the Catholic Company caught my eye:
"But how do we know that something is a miracle? How do we know something isn’t a tall tale, or something strange but ultimately explicable by natural means, or the figment of a deluded or stressed imagination? How do we know it’s not demonic?
The Church knows that miracles can often be confused with other things, and that, unfortunately, fallen humans sometimes make up stories for the purposes of fame or attention. She also knows that demons have certain powers that can make certain things appear miraculous.
In view of these facts, the Church has developed a protocol to validate miraculous occurrences. She does not, of course, investigate every single claim, but rather those that have public repercussions, such as the miraculous healings attributed to the saints that, if validated, will advance their cause for canonization. Eucharistic miracles are another form of miracle that often warrants her attention, since they draw venerators and it is important to ensure that the miracle is authentic.
In all these investigations, the Church is careful, thorough, and detached in her approach. She employs doctors, scientists, and competent authorities in order to rule out natural explanations or to understand the phenomenon better. Only when she has completed this stringent process does she validate the miracle.
You can learn more about the facts and fictions surrounding miracles in The Catholic Guide to Miracles: Separating the Authentic from the Counterfeit by Adam Bla

Tuesday, November 23, 2021

Whatever You Do, Avoid the PBS Thanksgiving

 Camas, WA -  PBS's Bret Turner wants you to teach your children critical thinking skills by teaching them the real story of Thanksgiving because

 "Teaching our children an accurate version of history can give them important context and information. Even very young kids deserve to know that the sanitized version of the first Thanksgiving is at best simplistic and at worst, harmful towards the groups who mourn during this time. The feast that Pilgrims and the Wampanoag enjoyed together did happen — but it was also during a time of suffering, death and cruelty. Thanksgiving is a great opportunity to talk about how Native Americans had been living in what we now call America for generations before Europeans arrived, and that Native Americans have a vast array of cultures"

PBS SoCal advertisement promoting the True Story of Thanksgiving depicting an African American Family 

Reminds me of the CotoBuzz Journal's Belief - Action Gap Index:  Measures the gap between what we are willing to do for what e believe;  On the zero gap side are Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, three Hebrew men who are thrown into a fiery furnace by Nebuchadnezzar II, King of Babylon.  Or the Jewish woman with seven sons described in 2 Maccabees 7 who were arrested by Antiochus IV Epiphanes, who forced them to prove their respect to him by consuming pig meat. When they refused, he tortured and killed the sons one by one in front of the unflinching and stout-hearted mother.
Belief-Action Gap Index

On the opposite end of the scale is a self-described devout Catholic who funds the killing of millions of unborns using the euphemism of womens' heath.

Ilhan Omar refers to Israel as an occupying force.  Then there is horror of over the the Taliban's destruction of Afghanistan's cultural sites.  UNSCO warns the damage could be long-lasting. The same people applauded the removal of Robert E Lee's stature , want to rewrite the National Anthem because it is racist and want a redesigned flag suitable to progressives.

If we want to teach children critical thinking skills we must stop promoting intellectual inbreeding like Main Stream Media, the Education System and Big Tech promote. Diversity based on skin color or sexual preference is not intellectual diversity.  Diversity, Inclusion and Equity are not new constructs.  The Catholic Church  invented DIE as illustrated by James Joyce's character Here Come Everybody.  The actual DIE implementation is different:  Tolerance is not acceptance.  And Tolerance is not intolerance of intellectual diversity.

Bestselling author, political adviser and social and ethical prophet Jeremy Rifkin investigates the evolution of empathy and the profound ways that it has shaped our development and our society. Taken from a lecture given by Jeremy Rifkin as part of the RSA's free public events programme

Is America Perfect.  No!.  Is Israel and occupying force.  Not!  If we want to provide context, it needs to be complete, not selecting convenient time periods in history.  as Jeremy Refkin suggests, go back to the time before there were countries, for example.

There is a reason why millions of people all over the earth try to come to America at all costs.  And it is not because the Pilgrims mistreated the Native Americans

Monday, November 22, 2021

Civics Education is a National Security Imperative

 Camas, WA - On April of this year, the FBI, under Director Christopher Wray appointed Scott McMillion as the bureau's first Chief Woke Officer, then in August, it signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Girls Scouts. Why the MOU if not to promote the LGBT style at the bureau and the nation?

All this eeemed contradictory, as earlier in the year, Wray had unequivocally stating that Civic Education is a National Security Imperative.  Civics and Wokeness are mutually exclusive

In an earlier piece we wrote

Appointing a Diversity Officer (such as the FBI's first CDO) based on her color or sexual preference, or  the FBI teaming up with the Girl Scouts, or even the FBI's incessant press releases warning the nation about reporting hate crime may result in  unintended consequences, such as hate crime hoaxes or promoting the LGBT lifestyle. All these are cultural signs, where culture is used as a form of social control.  If you do not like the culture, or the signs or language that define that culture, you do not belong!  That is not diversity!  That is indoctrination.

We also wrote that

Most high school students are not prepared for college.  According to Sarah Butrymowicz, The Hechinger Report: 

"Most schools place students in what are called remedial courses in math or English before they can move on to a full load of college-level, credit-bearing courses – a process that is a financial drain on not only students, but also colleges and taxpayers, costing up to an estimated $7 billion a year."

 Instead  colleges and  universities do  the job high schools are supposed to do.  A viable option for these students in trade school.  Trade schools  have a more streamlined approach to learning providing students with a specialized skill set rather than focusing on general education  that students care little about  Trade school training takes less time to complete, require little critical thinking & communication skills, it is usually  hands-on and a lot more cost effective

The reason most of these students do not choose trade schools is mostly due to parents, usually highly educated ones, as the Atlantic's Meg St-Esprit writes 

When college is held up as the one true path to success, parents—especially highly educated ones—might worry when their children opt for vocational school instead

However, the argument made by Wray in support of Civics Education as a national security imperative is spot on.  Why Hillsdale College's initiative to author a complete curriculum of American History and Civics Education for K-12 classrooms is desperately needed,

Dr. Kathleen O'toole, Hillsdale College's Assistant Provost for K-12 Education writes:

Recognizing the critical moment in which we live and in response to hundreds of requests from concerned Americans, Hillsdale College has authored a complete curriculum of American history and civics lessons for K-12 classrooms. This curriculum is modeled on the civic education students at Hillsdale-affiliated K-12 schools receive, is created by teachers and professors, and is applicable to any kind of K-12 school: public, private, charter, and homeschool. We believe it is the most comprehensive and highest quality history and civics curriculum now available. And it is entirely free.

We released the initial stages of the curriculum in July, with the remaining history portions set for release in early 2022. We anticipate widespread adoption by individual citizens, private schools, and homeschooling families, but we also believe it is essential that the curriculum gains some purchase within America’s public schools.

The entire curriculum may be downloaded on our Hillsdale K-12 Education website.

We applaud Hillsdale College's latst initiative and like Dr, O'toole, ware very hopeful about the good this curriculum might do for America’s students and for America itself. 

Click here to learn more about The Hillsdale 1776 Curriculum.


For the Birds - Episode Seven - The Great Get Away!


Camas, WA:   After three weeks or so since Marshmallow joined Sunny, they seem to be getting along just fine.  Marshmallow still looks a little clumsy and Sunny keeps herself busy with the pine bark or simply goofing off 

I was able to capture Sunny and Marshmallow's Last Moments together

The weather was good. although a little windy for a  cage deep cleaning.  Prior to Ocean going to Bird heaven, I would take out their water, food, mirrors and perches inside the house, before taking the cage outside - as a precaution.  As they got more comfortable, I would leave the cage's door open as I was doing the cleaning but they never even got close. 

I had posted this meme earlier today - turned out to be an omen

I saw Marshmallow a little more vulnerable and more excitable,  so I was more careful. Even after taking precautions, she flew out of the cage and landed on the window drapes.  I was quickly able to get her back in the cage, unharmed using a handy net. 

Caught a fuzzy selfie after Marshmallows first attempt to flee

Having taken care of the perches, water & food, I took the cage outside for deep cleaning:  there's the bottom tray with paper lining.  Once that's finished, there's the bottom wire mesh tray that needs to come out. Because the bark platform sits on the wire mesh, I need to open the gate so I can lift the platform.  For a second I though I should not clean it this time, but I dif. 

As I pulled the wire mesh and not wanting to take any chances, I used the net to cover the gate as I lifted the platform.  Within a microsecond, Marshmallow made a mad dash toward a miniscule opening between the net and the gate. She flew away like rocket straight up perhaps 500 ft in the air.  Clearly the clumsy looking parakeet was not mean to be careful 

While it was clear that Ocean Blue's sudden death  impacted Sunny, Marshmallows departure did not make a big difference.  It is as if Sunny knew Marshmallow was not going to stay long.  I would not be surprised is Marshmallow told Sunny she was planning to flee and tried to recruit Sunny! 

Bon voyage Marshmallow Cream.

Our Trilogy:  Angel to the left came to visit it he was dying.  Top right, Ocean Blue, who suffered a sudden death and Marshmallow who was not born free, albeit in a cage.

Saturday, November 20, 2021

The Kyle Rittenhouse Acquittal is Not the Story

Camas, WA - After the Kyle Rittenhouse acquittal, GoFundMe explained why it acted as a jury, judge and executioner as it removed fundraises for Rittenhouse's legal fees, while Jeffrey Toobin made a mockery of the justice system  using false equivalence and wondering in a Tweet  "..what the verdict would be in the #RittenhouseTrial oif the defendant were a Black seventeen year old from another state who killed two people with an illegal weapon"  But the Rittenhouse Acquittal is not the story

The real story is, how many more falsehoods, hoaxes or cover ups will it take for the Main Stream Media, the DNC and Big Tech to apologize to America for undermining the Justice System  and where is the Department of Justice in all of this?

Lets review a few of the of the falsehoods, hoaxes or cover ups











#Hunter's Computer




My technical training says that science is never closed.  What flat earth claim was proven to be false, for instance.  Yet Social media raised misinformation flags whenever claims were made that were critical of the status quo.  Ionically, Twitter users follow the Pareto Principle:  A few vocal Twitters drown out the trivial many, falsehoods are 70% more likely to be retweeted and 70% of the prodigious Tweeters are Democrat

Consider Twitter users conform to the #ParetoPrinciple - the vocal few drown out the many. 70% of reTweetes are from Democrats . 52% of adults get their news on #Facebook, 87% of #Twitter users also use Facebook 

Tweeter users follow Pareto Principle
Twitter promotes Silo building as a safety measure - TRANSLATION: Intellectual Inbreeding, while Facebook  monetizes hate & division, according to Frances Haugen 

Twitter promoting Silo building as a security measure

Now consider that in a 2009 study Jonathan Haidt presented 8,000 plus people with hypotheticals such as discard a box of ballots to help your candidate win, They had to say whether they would do it  for $10, $1,000, $100,000,More? 

Liberals were willing to betray group loyalty, disrespect authority or do something disgusting, like say, voter fraud while conservatives said they were less willing to compromise on any of the moral categories.

Again I ask, when will the Main Stream Media, DNC and Big Tech Apologize to America for undermining American's trust in its institutions

Friday, November 19, 2021

It is not The Great Resignation but the Great Seppuku

 Camas, WA - The Great Resignation is a misnomer.  People refer to the record number of Americans voluntarily leaving their jobs as the Great Resignation, but it is actually the Great Seppuku!  Where Seppuku , sometimes referred to as Harakiri, is a form of Japanese ritual suicide by disembowelment. Seppuku was used voluntarily by samurai to die with honor rather than fall into the hands of their enemies, as a form of capital punishment for samurai who had committed serious offenses, or performed because they had brought shame to themselves. A kaishakunin is a person appointed to behead an individual who has performed seppuku. In this analogy, the US government acts as the kaishkunin


In the US, the industries with the highest turnover rates include Staffing at 352% and Hotels at around 300%, largely as a result of temporary staff.  Within the Technology sector, Software has the highest turnover rate at 22.4%. The sector  with the lowest turnover rate is Government, at 1.5%. Of course, we all know why.

However; Ian Cook at Harvard Review , says the voluntary resignations are in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the American government refusing to provide necessary worker protection, and wage stagnation despite rising costs of living. Some economists  say the Great Resignation is  a general strike while discussing Striketober, a strike wave in October 

While over at CNBC the Great Resignation is attributed "to a jobs market in which people leaving their positions is driven more by temporary Covid concerns than a general strike.  And NPR says that "As pandemic life recedes in the U.S., people are leaving their jobs in search of more money, more flexibility and more happiness" 

But studies show happiness is not a destination, but a choice. Its an attitude. "Happy people know that  happiness is a choice. They know it is not a reaction to present circumstances. Instead, happiness is an available decision despite them. They have removed the thinking that waits for everything to be perfect before joy in life is experienced."

While Forbes' Jack Kelly says "The Great Resignation is a sort of workers’ revolution and uprising against bad bosses and tone-deaf companies that refuse to pay well and take advantage of their staff. Millions of workers voted with their feet". On the other hand; strikes are called for a number of reasons, but mainly as an economic strike meant to improve wages and benefits to improve working conditions.  Those voluntarily leaving the workforce do not get better wages, unless they go back to the workforce with a promotion

But we know the US Education System is in desperate need of a paradigm change. Most high school students are not prepared for college.  According to Sarah Butrymowicz, The Hechinger Report:  "Most schools place students in what are called remedial courses in math or English before they can move on to a full load of college-level, credit-bearing courses – a process that is a financial drain on not only students, but also colleges and taxpayers, costing up to an estimated $7 billion a year."

 Instead  colleges and  universities do the job high schools are supposed to do.  A viable option for these students in trade school.  Trade schools  have a more streamlined approach to learning providing students with a specialized skill set rather than focusing on general education  that students care little about  Trade school training takes less time to complete, require little critical thinking & communication skills, it is usually  hands-on and a lot more cost effective

I say the Great Seppuku is a government created crisis partly attributed to its gross mismanagement of the response to COVID.  Then there is the liberal dispensation of unemployment benefits and raising the minimum wage.  A person can go to work to a certain McDonald's and get paid $20.00 / hour with little to no formal education, rivaling the salary commanded by a liberal arts college graduate.


Updated 11/1/2021 Camas, WA -  Before Flat Screen televisions, we had CRT  (Cathode Ray Tube) Televisions,  vacuum tubes and transistors.  A...

Thursday, November 18, 2021

The Misguided DOE’s Gainful Employment Rule & Public Education Reform

 Originally published Sept 1, 2010

Posted By CotoBlogzz

Rancho Santa Margarita, CA - Larry Sand, the president of the non-profit California Teachers Empowerment Network – a self-described non-partisan, non-political group dedicated to providing teachers with reliable and balanced information about professional affiliations and positions on educational issues—information teachers will often not get from their school districts or unions, recently made the argument that the Los Angeles Times may have started a revolution in teacher accountability by measuring  teacher performance and posting it in its Los Angeles Teacher Ratings web page using a technique called value add, where value add is the difference between a student’s expected growth and actual performance.

From the various media reports, the response has been predictable:  teachers' unions characterize the LA Times  rating process as flawed, while those seeking accountability, like Mr. Sand, think it is about time.

Now consider  that research by Adam Schaeffer of the Cato Institutes Center for Education Freedom shows that The Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD)  spent $29,780 per student in fiscal year 2007-08, way above the $10,000 advertised by the school district. Diane Lenning, seeking a post as Superintendent of California schools argues that in order to fix the LAUSD-  a district she characterizes as an albatross - it should be broken “into about ten smaller mid-size  districts to  bring more efficient and effective oversight of Los Angeles Schools.”

While Gabriella Holt, a local community leader recently appointed to LA County Board of Education suggested that perhaps Charter Schools could help - in our Facebook exchange, we understand she is open to home-schooling.

According to Mr. Sand, he began his teaching career in New York in 1971.  Since 1984, he has taught elementary school as well as English, math, history and ESL in the Los Angeles Unified School District, where he also served as a Title 1 Coordinator.

In the case of Ms. Lenning - she  has a point - big government does not work – dinosaurs tend to disappear and albatrosses are not very efficient, and we think Ms. Holt is on the right track.  While it is  very easy to understand why  Mr. Sand would think that starting to measure teacher performance would be the start of a revolution in teacher accountability, this is hardly the case.

Newsflash:  All effectively run private sector businesses have and continue to use some sort of value add metric.  If an employee does not add any value, the employee is let go – many times on the spot.  While if a public sector employee is incompetent or even accused of misconduct, chances are that years and hundreds of thousands of Dollars in legal fees later, that person is still receiving a “pay check”.  So, while Ms. Lenning’s  and Mr. Sand’s ideas may be necessary, these are not sufficient to start a revolution in public education.  by any means. 

What is required in public education is a real revolution.  A paradigm shift – the slaying of the Public Education Hydra, including the Department of Education.

This requires the decoupling of the Evil Twins:  the US Economic Triple Constraint: 1)  Card Check 2)  Health Care and  3) Cap & Trade, and  California’s Triple Threat: 1) Public sector organized labor 2) un-elected, un-checked parasitic bureaucracies and 3)  lobbyists.   and public education.  This requires the privatization of not only K1-12 public education, but also Liberal Arts Education,given that for  profit universities such as Argosy, Kaplan, DeVry and the University of Phoenix, offer a higher quality education, sans the parasites – the move would free up billions of dollars that could be used by the current research universities to make sure the US continues to be competitive in a global arena:

Keep in mind that for the last 30 years in California, students have developed the FDH (Fat, Dumb and Happy) Syndrome, while the union spends some $200 million/every ten years just to pursue its own political agenda, and thousands more in Los Angeles alone to teach students how to prepare sushi, while lobbying the states legislature to "CRIMINALIZE" Home-school.  Wit the last $26 billion teacher bailout the President characterized as "special interest freebie, ONLY if you think it is a special interest"

Arguably, Jaime Escalante, of Stand and Deliver fame,  was a game-changer in education, conclusively demonstrating that when willing and competent teachers want to teach, they can teach advanced math to the most disadvantaged students – such as Garfield HS in Los Angeles, CA.    However, the California Teacher’s Association (CTA) fought Escalante when he argued that he could teach advanced placement math in a class with more than 50 students, despite the overwhelming evidence siding with Escalante.   

More recently  Doug Lemov in  his Teach Like a Champion: 49 Techniques that Put Students on the Path to College book -  featured as the cover and full length feature story in the March 7 issue of the New York Times Magazine -  opines that Escalante was a uber-teacher, the likes of which not too many have seen,  and not a good model for the average instructor, arguing that his 49 techniques can be better scaled to fit the more mediocre instructor, instead of trying to convert every teacher into Escalante-like. “A few teachers may be born with an intuitive gift for teaching, but when I watch a great teacher I see mostly hard work and attention to detail,”  according to Lenov.

The excuse that “Teachers only have so much time with the kids, and teaching to the lowest common denominator is a disservice to those that are learning.” is just that- an excuse - as Escalante, Lenov and a myriad of CTA-independently minded educatiors will tell us.

OK, forget Jaime Escalante - as most teachers would probably not qualify to seat in one of his an advanced placement math class, but what part of Doug Lemov's book " Teach Like a Champion: 49 Techniques that Put Students on the Path to College" does the CTA not understand?

Enough with the excuses.  Enough  with passing the devalued Buck. Enough with the deflection.  As President Reagan would argue, "public sector organized labor is an anachronism in the 21st century" - Privatizing public education is the only sensible answer

But wait, there is more: The Department of Education (DOE) we characterize as a parasitic bureaucracy and largely responsible for the FDH Syndrome and the malaise afflicting public education, in a City of Bell action we affectionally characterize as Bellisimo, has proposed a rule that would limit educational and economic opportunities for hundreds of thousands of Americans in its misleading  Gainful Employment rule would make entire programs ineligible for Title IV financial aid if they fail to meet a one-size-fits-all metric test that has little to do with academic quality. 

We continue to argue legislators, politicians and the general public to take a stand against the Evil Twins: the US Economic Triple Constraint: 1)  Card Check 2)  Health Care and  3) Cap & Trade, and  California’s Triple Threat: 1) Public sector organized labor 2) un-elected, un-checked parasitic bureaucracies and 3)  lobbyists.  

We continue to argue that public education is a national security concern and can only be fixed through a paradigm shift – real revolution, not evolution, or devolution in the case of the CTA
Send a message to the DOE, a most parasitic bureaucracy and tell it to forget about its Gainful Employment rule and focus more on how to extinguish itself and make way for real education innovators.  You can pick up a petition from just about anyone involved in  real  education, or click here, for an example.

For the Birds - Episode Six: Alls Well With My Cage

 Camas, WA:  Congratulations to Sunny Jewel for being such a hospitable roommate that Marshmallow Cream seems more comfortable in her forever home.  Sunny not only allowed Mallow to use her favorite perch, but also Mallow took over the pine bark mining operation.

In this clip, Sunny is busy mining, while Mallow looks at herself in the mirror

To date, Mallow still seems a little awkward when she jumps from perch to perch.  We trust that it is due to her young age.  While both carry on a conversation, it is not as loud and as continuous as when Ocean Blue was alive.

I was able to take the portable vacuum cleaner apart and found that the output of the mining operation (dust) and feathers went through the vacuum's filter rendering it inoperable.  The rechargeable battery seems to have been damaged, although no obvious reason for it.  So I ordered a replacement battery which will take roughly one month to get here.  As I kept looking for alternatives I found in Amazon,  a portable vacuum cleaner ate the same price as the battery I ordered AND gets here the next day!

Sunny doing a number on the Spay Millet

Friday, November 12, 2021

For the Birds - Episode Five

 Camas, WA - We have ended the week with a clear change in dynamics, after Ocean Blue went to Bird Heaven:  Sunny Jewel has shown great hospitality.  While newly arrive Marshmallow cream hangs around where Sunny used to, Sunny does not seem to mind, and is very accommodating.

While Sunny seems very athletic, Marshmallow seems to be a little clumsy:  She seems to miss the perches by a few nanometers and has to use her wings to finish the jump.   She is also still very jumpy not too active and not too talkative.

That got me thinking about the life of a commercially grown parakeet like Marshmallow:  Once parakeets are hatched, the babies will take four to to five weeks to fly out of the nest. Breeders suggest that once babies leave the nest, to separate them from their parents and keep them until the black color beak disappears,  " because a baby budgie clear beak has a better price than with a black color beak."  PetSmart says the parakeets they sell are not older than three months.  So parakeets like Marshmallow were separated from their parents after a month or so, then transported to a store such as PetSmart and put in a cage with other parakeets, then sold presumably within days and transported to their hopefully forever home where they are put in yet a different cage!

Something else I learnt in this time is that i need a good portable vacuum cleaner, lik VacLife.  It did not last last too long.  Feathers and the fine bark particles bypassed the filter and clogged up the engine.

VacLife - was not suitable for bird cage cleaning

I might see if I can repair or get a new one. 

While Marshmallow and Sunny seem to be slowly adapting to their companionship, it may be a long journey and we hope Marshmallow has the stamina 

Thursday, November 11, 2021

The WSJ in tabloid blasts USC


Camas. WA - The Wall Street Journal's 

Lisa Bannon and Andrea Fuller in a piece dated  Nov. 9, 2021 blast the University of Southern California, for using its prestigious brand and a for-profit outfit to "push" a two year $115, 00 online degree forcing students to rack up their student debt.  That is a gross misapplication of the theory of allocation. The education system in America does not need a reform.  It needs a complete makeover.  I paradigm shift. 

Literacy Inc findings regarding state of Literacy in USA

They write

Over the past decade, the University of Southern California has used a for-profit company to help enroll thousands of students in its online social-work master’s program. 

The nonprofit school used its status-symbol image to attract students across the country, including low-income minority students it targeted for recruitment, often with aggressive tactics. Most students piled on debt to afford the tuition, which last year reached $115,000 for the two-year degree. The majority never set foot on the posh Los Angeles campus

While it is understandable for to the Wall Street Journal to push tabloid journalism, it condones financial illiteracy

  According to Literacy Inc

Many of the United States ills are directly related to illiteracy. Here are just a few statistics:

  • Literacy is learned. Illiteracy is passed along by parents who cannot read or write.
  • One child in four grows up not knowing how to read.
  • 43% of adults at level I literacy skills live in poverty compared to only 4% of those at level V.
  • Three out of four food stamp recipients perform in the lowest two literacy levels.
  • 90% of welfare recipients are high school dropouts.
  • 16 to 19-year-old girls at the poverty level and below, with below average reading skills, are 6 times more likely to have out – of – wedlock children, who in turn will have below average reading skills or none at all.

While the Council of Graduate Schools says that 

Today’s graduate and undergraduate students are in a much different place financially than previous generations of students. In 2012, total student debt for the first time exceeded $1 trillion and is now over $1.3 trillion. 

Forget the financial place.  It is the financial illiteracy.  The root cause is that a good number of graduate and undergraduate students are financially illiterate and more high school seniors are functionally illiterate. The education system in America does not need a reform.  It needs a complete makeover.  I paradigm shift. 

Blaming USC for making poor financial decisions is like  Stacy Pincus, the Chicago woman who filed a $5 million class-action lawsuit against Starbucks in April 2016, claiming the company puts too much ice in its cold drinks.  The lawsuit was rightly dismissed by a Chicago federal judge in late 2016 

Or the group of Chicago plaintiffs  who filed a class-action lawsuit against Home Depot in 2017, because the store’s four-by-four lumber actually measures out to 3.5 inches by 3.5 inches on each side. 

Full disclosure:  One of my children went to USC and the other one to UCLA.  How did we get there?  I graduated high school with honors and very much wanted to attend UCLA.  Specifically, UCLA Medical School.  Because I could not afford it, I worked full time, went the community college route, transferred to State and warned an Engineering Degree with a minor in Bio-Medical Engineering, 

Tuesday, November 09, 2021

For The Birds - Episode Four: A Warm Welcome to Marshmallow

Camas, WA:  

 Today is the fourth day since Ocean Blue went to Bird Heaven, leaving Sunny Blue behind 

And while Sunny woke up on her usual high perch, taking a while to get going, soon she went to work on her old pine bark plank in a clear sign that her grieving period was coming to an end

For the rest of the say, Sunny was mostly busy & talking to us and talking to herself in two or three different sounds - sounded as if we had two birds in one cage

Marshmallow Cream, the newest member of the family- sitting in Sunnys favorite place:  The pine bark plank

We had talked about the cons & pros of getting Sunny a new partner.  What if they didn't like each?  We also thought that if we got Sunny a new partner it had to be sooner, rather than later 

So this afternoon, after school pick up, my granddaughters & I headed to PetSmart - on no time, they settled for Marshmallow Cream.  Once home, Sunny & Marshmallow were in opposite sides of the cage sizing each other.  Marshmallow sat on the platform while Sunny was on what used to be Ocean's favorite perch with oversized mirror.

As the Bard might say, apparently all is well than ends well.  We still have to see the sleeping arrangements, but we expect the worst may be over.

A slouchy Sunny during her grieving period

Sunday, November 07, 2021

For the Birds - Episode Three

 Episode Three

Camas, WA -  Today is the second days since Ocean Blue unexpectedly went to Bird Heaven, and we can all feel it, specially her mate, Sunny Jewel.  It is too quiet, even though we usually have background music.

Sunny Jewel is always energetic and "working" on the pine bark platforms, but for the last couple of days, she seems uninterested,  almost lethargic .  She hangs around the  perch with the large mirror Ocean used to spend a great deal of time.  Sunny's  body language is also telling - Instead of standing up, she seems to slouch - something I had not noticed before.

Ocean Blue and Sunny Jewel as seen my my grandaughters

There were a couple of times during the day, today, when Sunny would be jumping around in circles, which I could only translate as a feeling of desperation or frustration.

Early today, we switched our usual gospel background music to parakeet sounds. My wife observed that perhaps that was not a good idea, as it could remind Sunny of Ocean's departure - we switched back

During the day, Sunny visited the platform. But I can tell she is in no mood to work.  In cleaning the cage, it was obvious that there wasn't as much trash as when Ocean was alive, almost no cleaning required.  Most likely, Sunny is not eating much.  The branch of Millet is still hanging, almost untouched, until later on today, when Sunny took a few bites,

Sunny Before and After Ocean's Death

In trying to digest Ocean's short life, it is appears that PetSmart has some explaining to do:  Ocean was playing all day long Friday, but died on her sleep and we only had her and Sunny for five months! Was it a heart attack?  Is it genetic?  Is it a breeding problem.

We just hope that Sunny's grieving period is short and that she goes back to being her energetic non-stop self.

Diet: romaine lettuce






They like to make square perches round, and some round perches, really small. 

By accident I got 

Millet and lettuce

They don't like square perches

Saturday, November 06, 2021

For the Birds - Tribute to Ocean Blue, Beloved Parakeet

Episode Two

Camas, WA  I started this series as I way to learn to take care of our recently acquired and beloved parakeets Ocean Blue & Sunny Jewel .  Sometime in April, I acceded to one of my granddaughter's wishes to take her to the local PetSmart - she had already lobbied grandma into considering getting her a new pet.  Perhaps a fish 

Sunny Jewel

As soon as we went inside, she darted toward the fish section and had already selected one she liked.  But as I was ready to call a clerk to help with the fish, from the corner of her eyes she saw Ocean Blue.  It was love at first peck! She stopped looking at the fish and right there and then, she wanted Ocean Blue.  Once that was decided, she turned to selecting a parakeet for her sister.  She chose Sunny Jewel.

As we got Ocean Blue & Sunny Jewel settled in their new home, Ocean flew out of the cage.  It took us a few minutes to get her back in, but in the process, my granddaughter was able to take an iconic picture of Ocean Blue in my hands

Since then, Ocean has been more sociable, while Sunny seems more energetic and aggressive.  Ocean loved her Millet. I got to the point that I would approach her with a branch of Millet in my hand  and she would start chomping right away.  Often she would grab the branch with one of her feet, as she would use her other foot to grab on to the cage or perch.

Iconic picture of Ocean Blue 

Ocean loved to peck at an oversized mirror on her perch.  They made that their main bathroom.  As soon as I cleaned the perches, they would start pecking at the mirror again 

BEFORE-AFTER mirror on a perch 

I built a little platform with a two inch thick giant pine bark.  Sunny can spend hours shaping the bark, while Ocean was more deliberate.  She would join in once in a while but not overly enthused 

Yesterday, besides the cage cleaning mid morning, spending a couple of hours outside to get fresh air & introducing baby spinach to their diet, all seemed normal.  Never lethargic or symptomatic of anything  that indicated there was anything wrong with Ocean

Bark Platform- Sunny's favorite pastime

In fact,, Sunny plays a mean game of Keet Basketball.  Yesterday I was fortunate to catch both going at it, using their own basket. 

This morning as I uncovered their cage to say good morning, the place was unusually quiet.  Sunny was standing on their favorite high perches, next to a warming perch.  I could not see Ocean, then got that feeling. As I looked around the cage, Ocean was lying on the floor next to their bath tub & water tub.  Ocean has gone to Bird Heaven  to join Angel.  Angel paid us a short dying  visit this summer. 

While we will surely miss our beloved Ocean Blue, our attention turns to Sunny Jewel.   How is she going to cope without Ocean? Does she know Ocean is dead?   She is currently more subdued - she knows something is different.

RIP Ocean Blue

Angel and Ocean Blue now in Bird Heaven

Sunny Jewel busy working on her bark, while Ocean Blue pecks at her favorite mirror

Tribute to Ocean Blue and Sunny as seen by my granddaughters

Thursday, November 04, 2021

r/CamasWashngton likes Life in camas, but not the white, cisgendered, heterosexual or Christian community

Intellectual inbreeding 

Camas, WA - I have been notified that the moderator for the subreddit account has permanently banned the CotoBuzz Journal. What does that tell you about the state of our public discourse, free speech and Reddit when  a subreddit "devoted to life in and around the city of Camas, Washington" permanently bans you for posting about life in & around Camas, Washington.

Life about camas, but not the white, cisgendered, heterosexual or Christian community 

We know from the Facebook whistleblower, that Facebook encourages hate and division, as a profit making strategy.

Twitter 's is different.  It uses a cryptic algorithm throttling or shadowbanning content it does not like.  Users can block each others so that eventually everybody lives in their own bubble.  Makes it less controversial, but the same people who demand diversity in terms of skin color and sexual preference, very much prefer intellectual inbreeding

Reddit bans you - because you think differently:  Steve Jobs rolling on his grave

Reddit is the ultimate bubble.  Community administrators, such as the one in this case, can ban anyone they dislike, not for violating any rules, but because they do not like what you have to say.  Again, less disagreement, and again, much intellectual inbreedinng

Subreddit who does not identify with white, cisgendered, heterosexual or Christian community seems to prefer intellectual inbreed 

Giving the r/camaswashngton Reddit administrator the benefit of the doubt, perhaps there is an offending post.  Perhaps my piece on the successful introduction of the political index, Poldex, critical of the establishment.  Or perhaps its ,my piece about the cancerous Critical Race Theory and their proponents.

You be the judge:

As published by Conservative Daily News

As published by the CotoBuzz Journal 

Poldex Debut in Camas-Washougal Mayoral Race a Success - The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

Camas WA - While the CotoBuzz Journal's political index (Poldex) has successfully been used for more than 10 years, we had reservation.