Date: Oct 26, 2012 12:56 AM
Author: kirby urner
Subject: Re: Speachless In New York (or, another OMG moment)

On Thu, Oct 25, 2012 at 7:51 PM, Paul Tanner <> wrote:

> On Thu, Oct 25, 2012 at 3:46 PM, kirby urner <>
> wrote:

> > On Thu, Oct 25, 2012 at 11:02 AM, Paul Tanner <> wrote:
> >>
> >> Per capita GDP and how it is distributed is not all that important?
> >> Tell that to places like Haiti.
> >>

> >
> > This looks like it might be some kind of response to what I wrote, but
> > maybe not.

> I say the same about all the below. I have no idea what you trying to
> get at. I mean, there will always be basic considerations, like:

I'm just giving an alternative narrative wherein there's no deus ex
machina "mathematical economics" such that, if we only followed it, utopia
would be ours, whereas "the conservatives" are too anti-math, too
anti-science (too creationist) to keep us from wallowing in some Planet of
the Apes scenario.

I just don't see that as the polarity (enlightened mathematical geniuses
versus conservative quasi-apes).

What I see are some people willing to think globally and look for solutions
that advantage all humanity, whereas other people are looking for "cost
externalization" schemes where they focus on some specific trend or number,
and take a devil-may-care attitude towards most everything else.

I'm reciting the "think globally, act locally" mantra of the late 60s /
early 70s (Whole Earth Catalog era) in a more verbose style, complete with
allusions to 'War is a Racket' hero of Occupy Portland, one Smedley
"fighting Quaker" Butler. There's the whole story of the Bonus Army and
Hoover's unfortunate response.

[ the Bonus Army protest in 1932 that led to the Hooverville in DC, an
Occupy-like tent village, began in a downtown Portland Park, the same one
used by Occupy Portland in 2011. General MacCarther, later relieved of duty
by Eisenhower, was eager to tromp around on horseback, setting fire to
veterans' tents, even though these were Americans who were owed money by
their own government, for service during WW1 --- ]

Interesting, don't you think, that so few questions have been put to the
presidential contenders regarding Occupy. However, Obama did bring it up
of his own accord, saying the US was immediately sympathetic to the
Tunisian students who got the ball rolling, and were on the side of the
protestors in Tahrir.

This was consistent with his stance on Iran, which is that the US is
friendly to young people there. He's talking about culture obviously, not
the military -- a culture crippled by sanctions, overdue for lifting if
it's only civilian power we're talking about (the last debate was unclear
on the meaning of "nuclear program" but under the NPT it's OK to have one,
just not for weapons (what the jerks have)).

I like sharing lore / history and don't think timeline data is out of place
in STEM. Why was physics such a popular major after WW2? Why did it taper
off? Have you read 'How the Hippies Saved Phyiscs' yet? Pretty
interesting. I was telling PHYSLRNR that I wish Terry would invite the
author for our speaker series, but I think we already have a full
line up this time. (author of "Hippies...")

Anyway, history is informative. How people shifted around because of
comfort levels around slavery was interesting. A lot of people having
problems with slavery (as a Christian institution, church-authorized),
moved West. The ones that stayed behind, if anti-slavery, were more likely
in favor of colonization, meaning they wanted freed slaves to head for
Liberia, Haiti or one of those. That's not what happened in large degree,
obviously, but you get more of a feel for why inequalities of various kinds
took a different shape in different parts of the country.

There's no "one size fits all" curriculum that the top-downer /
trickle-downers should impose in North America. On the other hand, the
more global hubs (e.g. some of the cities) do have spectacular curriculum
ideas, amazing innovations. Chicago has always been a game changer.
Illinois in general in some ways.

Give a school's faculty power to sort through lots of resources and roll
their own, knowing best in many cases what would speak to students the
most, be most effective, in their own communities. Then watch for
interesting results.

Share what works.

Let communities do more to be self healing (local re-investing), but with
broad access to what others have been doing (lots of examples, role models,
to emulate).