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Topic: Creative Math. on Zim Mathematics Web Site
Replies: 40   Last Post: Mar 8, 2003 12:15 PM

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Jack Jersawitz

Posts: 100
Registered: 12/8/04
Snake oil and apricot pits
Posted: Aug 17, 1999 7:58 PM
  Click to see the message monospaced in plain text Plain Text   Click to reply to this topic Reply

If a wife or other relative or just anybody off the street had a
serious cancer, but one nonetheless curable, I would raise bloody hell
if someone came around selling them snake oil or apricot pits as
curatives. Apparently Steinbok thinks if it is not my cancer or if it
is only my cancer or constructivist class, I should keep quiet without
the formal credentials that he judges as valid.
Steinbok of course, and others, are selling the apricot pit of
constructivism and thus they scream bloody murder when someone
apertains that it is of little more efficacy than apricot pits.
Because they apparently have an investment in constructivism they want
to deny, as Steinbok does when he denigrates my lack of math degrees,
someone can get behind the so-called "math" of constructivism and
analyze it from the more basic position of scientific methodology and
having approached it from that position in the first place not bought
into it at all. After all Steinbok, constructivism as an idea is not
itself math but only an idea about how to teach math.
Really Steinbok, what you are saying, is that I should look the
other way at the fact that the mostly Black members of that class,
already in remedial work because of the racist past (And present) of
our school system, and let folks like you continue to victimize them
simply because I don't have the formal degrees that give you and
mystical types like Zim cachet in the "education" community.
Really Steinbok, when you start saying "Jack should have the
curtesy of butting out from discussions where he does not belong" you
are telling me how close you are to a culture of fascist education
where only the annointed shall be heard.
I see no point in talking with someone like you. What is of concern
is that few here oppose you or Zim's nonesense which goes a long way
toward explaining the degredation of the U.S. educational system.

j.



On 17 Aug 99, Victor Steinbok wrote re. The GRNAD FINALE: A Jack in
every stable:

> I guess, there is no time like the present and I must respond to the
> latest round of lunatic rants before this forum gets shut down by
> divine interference (I wish!). Zim's nonsense notwithstanding, I
> believe anyone who got a CS degree in 1979 (math minor or not) got a
> better math education than quite a few people with math degrees

since
> then. I cannot judge the actual quality of Zim's mathematical
> knowledge, but for me it suffices that the mere quantity is
> considerably greater than Jack's, and Jack should have the curtesy

of
> butting out from discussions where he does not belong--not as a
> teacher, not as a math practicioner of any sort and not as a parent.
> If he wants to take issue with the course he apparently detested,

this
> is not a proper forum for that.
>
> Zim's "math" is not dangerous. It is not anything I would consider
> teachable, nor is it "art" as Zim seems to insist. I am not about to
> infringe on his beliefs--he can hold whatever etherial opinions he
> wishes. There is little danger they will pursuade any students to

drop
> whatever they doing and join the Creative Math cult. And as long as
> Zims of this Cult do not ask for support money to develop teaching
> materials, I am not worried.
>
> However, the discussion that followed the original post was not any
> better. I've known a few Euclids and Newtons, but none of them were
> also named Leibniz (some of their pets were, but that's another
> story). So I am working on the assumption that Newton Leibniz, or
> simply Newty, wants his name hidden for whatever purposes. In this
> case either his pseudonim has gone to his head or he expects us all

to
> be telepathic. However, his fear of me accusing him of little
> knowledge were unfounded--my jab indeed was to Jack alone (perhaps

Zim
> deserves it too, but Jack's ignorance is considerably more obvious).
>
> On 15 Aug 99, Newton Leibniz wrote re. Huh? Whatchu talking about
> Willis?:
>

> > Vic,
> >
> > In the past three days I have seen postings which do not make any
> > sense: Zim's mathematics and now yours. Please answer these

> questions
> > as clearly and to the point as possible:
> >
> > 1. Which person are you referring to that doesn't know any math:

Zim
> > or Jack? While Zim has an undergraduate minor in mathematics, I
> would
> > say that Jack has a better understanding of the mathematics he
> knows.
> > Or are you referring to me? That would be down right hilarious.
>
> I believe I've answered this question above.
>

> > 2. What do you mean by "doing what math is all about"? Do you
even
> > know what you just said? I am really interested in your answer.
>
> I know exactly what I said, and I did not imply that Zim in any way

is
> doing math. Just last week several professional mathematicians
argued
> about whether a "function" can have non-numeric values (all seem to
> have accepted the possibility of non-numeric arguments). The
> invocation of Bourbaki made some cheer and some shudder. The issue

was
> settled simply by sayng that the Bourbaki required definition does
not
> limit the scope of values, but, for practical purposes, most of the
> time when we refer to functions, we actually mean numerically-valued
> functions. So, for example, an X-->R2 function can always be
> interpreted as a pair of X-->R1 functions and satisfy both
> definitions. Now, people like Jack and the clique down in San Diego
> would have us believe that such a discussion is not POSSIBLE in
> mathematics because the Divine Immutable Mathematics has been handed
> down to Moses to Plato to Newton and Leibniz (who had a debate that
> would rival any current scientific disagreement) to Newton Leibniz,
> Wayne Bishop (or what have you) and it is to be transmitted

unchanged
> to Jack and his ilk. All mathematical definitions are written in
> stone. In fact, it was a great loss when we stopped teaching

Euclidean
> Geometry in schools and simply started calling it Geometry.
>
> Take a look at the old Cambridge schoolarship examinations, say from
> mid-1800. You will find that half the questions would look like

"State
> Proposition X" or "Prove Theorems V and IX". When I first saw this,
I
> was puzzled, but it soon dawned on me that the references were to
the
> Elements. With time, however, these types of questions have
> disappeared from the examinations because that is NOT HOW

MATHEMATICS
> WAS DONE and perceived.
>

> > 3. People who think math can be taught and learned in only one way
> are
> > probably dangerous. However, I have never seen Jack post any such
> > statement. What I have seen Jack post is many many statements

about
> > the dangers of teaching mathematics in ONE particular way --
> > constructivism.

>
> This statement to me is a display of ignorance--constructivism is

NOT
> a way of teaching mathematics. At best, it is a learning theory or a
> cognitive philosophy. Jack has been ranting and raving about his
> "constructivist" class for nearly a year now. I can only assume that
> both he and his instructor are deeply misguided. There is indeed a
> great danger posed by people who profess to criticize something they
> know nothing about. The really scary part is that a large number of
> teachers interpret "constructivism" to be what people like you tell
> them it is, but instead of agreeing with you, they proceed to teach
> following exactly the principles you detest.
>
> It is particularly ignorant to talk of ONE WAY OF TEACHING under
> constructivism, since ANY flavour of constructivist philosophy will
> tell you that it is not possible. Instead of reading the fluffy
> textbooks that are churned out by the likes of Addison Wesley, you
> should brush up on the basics and go back to the research sources
> rather than to their less-than-stellar textbook incarnations.
>

> > 4. What do you mean by finding allies with the Kansas state board
of
> > education? The state board removed the teachings of evolution
from
> > the curriculum so that teachers could construct creationism if
they
> so
> > chose. I do not think he would find any allies, only enemies
since
> > Jack is proposing that we teach science that is based on the
> > observable physical world. Under that premise, one must conclude

> that
> > evolution is the best working model we have and any other working
> > model is vastly inferior.

>
> While Jack's self-professed materialism would greatly offend their
> sensibilities, Jack and the KBE share an intolerance for things they
> do not understand (or, more accurately, refuse to understand).
>

> > Thank you Vic for providing another prime example of cloudy,
> > confusing, non logical writing. Once again I leave you with

> questions
> > to ponder, but this time they are directed at Vic and I expect
> > answers.

>
> You want cloudy? Gee... My original post took up scant six lines.
> Since then Jack has provided voluminous irrelevant drivel in

multiple
> copies with Newty chiming in his 2c-worth. For what it's worth, if
> Newty expects a polite private response to his accusations, he

should
> provide his electronic coordinates and a real name.
>
> VS-)
>
>





Date Subject Author
8/12/99
Read Creative Math. on Zim Mathematics Web Site
Zim Olson
8/12/99
Read Good intentions, but `Zim mathematics' is not mathematics.
Newton Leibniz
8/12/99
Read I see wholes in all Mathematical theory also
Zim Olson
8/14/99
Read Math and the dangerous Mr. Zim Olsen
Jack Jersawitz
8/15/99
Read dangerous ideas
Victor Steinbok
8/15/99
Read Huh? Whatchu talking about Willis?
Newton Leibniz
8/15/99
Read The central question
Jack Jersawitz
8/15/99
Read dangerous ideas and dangerous "mathematicians"
Jack Jersawitz
8/15/99
Read dangerous ideas and dangerous "mathematicians"
Jack Jersawitz
8/14/99
Read Mathematics and theory of knowledge
Jack Jersawitz
8/16/99
Read Math. Art dangerous to NCTM???!
Zim Olson
8/16/99
Read A full blown example
Jack Jersawitz
8/17/99
Read The GRAND FINALE to this topic!
Newton Leibniz
8/17/99
Read Why a Creative Axiom for Mathematics
Zim Olson
8/17/99
Read The pity of it is..
Jack Jersawitz
8/17/99
Read I'll buy that
Jack Jersawitz
8/17/99
Read The GRNAD FINALE: A Jack in every stable
Victor Steinbok
8/17/99
Read Snake oil and apricot pits
Jack Jersawitz
8/17/99
Read Snake oil and apricot pits
Jack Jersawitz
8/19/99
Read My last reply to Vic.
Newton Leibniz
8/19/99
Read Nonetheless
Jack Jersawitz
8/27/99
Read The straw man
Steve Jystad
8/28/99
Read Response to S. Jystad Part I
Newton Liebniz
8/28/99
Read Response to S. Jystad Part II
Newton Leibnitz
8/29/99
Read And classroom examples
Jack Jersawitz
8/29/99
Read And classroom examples
Jack Jersawitz
3/8/03
Read Re: The straw man
xfly
8/17/99
Read The GRNAD FINALE: A Jack in every stable
Victor Steinbok
12/15/02
Read Re: Math. Art dangerous to NCTM???! w/ new web address.
Zim Olson
8/16/99
Read Math. Art dangerous to NCTM???!
Zim Olson
8/27/99
Read Your philosophy site
Kirby Urner
8/28/99
Read Lack of Standard for Creative Mathematics for NCTM
Zim Olson
9/13/00
Read Re: Creative Math. on Zim Mathematics Web Site
wil
9/14/00
Read Explanation of some of Zim's ideas.
Zim Olson
9/24/00
Read Re: Explanation of some of Zim's ideas.
wil
9/24/00
Read Further explanation: Old paper of mine, 1997.
Zim Olson
9/30/00
Read Another example, Creative Math, Old Paper of Zim's Apr. 2000
Zim Olson
9/30/00
Read Re: Creative Math. on Zim Mathematics Web Site
Jack Jersawitz
10/8/00
Read System - Subsystem; Hierarchy & Definition. Answer attempt
Zim Olson
12/15/02
Read Re: Creative Math. on Zim Mathematics Web Site.(New Address)
Zim Olson
1/17/03
Read New Zim Mathematics Web Site
Zim Olson

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