skepticism is healthy…

In Philosophy on Sunday, 16 September 2012 at 07:14

always view everything with a healthy dose of skepticism. make your own conclusions.

  1. Reblogged this on mindremix and commented:
    Thought provoking.
    With thanks to blogger lederr and Philosophy.

  2. I enjoy your posts and your thoughtfulness. I’d like to know your thoughts on welfare in America. Do you believe it’s money spent on the poor and undeserving that is destroying our economy?

    • good question. i don’t think there is any ONE reason. it is certainly not the result of the cost of the welfare system alone, but i do think there needs to be serious welfare reform and it is a contributor. there are MANY reasons why we are in the economic situation we are in…buy-outs, excessive government spending, the euro crisis, increasing unemployment numbers, etc. the list is HUGE! your question reminded me of an article by h. gans from the 70’s (i believe). i will post it next. it explains some of the reasons poverty exists and the function of poverty. it’s old, but it is what comes to mind and i remember it making a very good argument. additionally, in regard to the public education system, i feel hegemony runs rampant (see freire) and adds to the cycle of poverty. i will post the gans article. my question back to you…do YOU believe money spent on welfare is destroying our economy?

      • Thanks for your reply. I will look forward to reading those posts. No, I do not think that money spent on welfare is destroying our economy. There is waste in all things human but I would rather see our government spend money on helping the least of our citizens improve their lot in this life rather than helping the wealthiest citizens get wealthier.

        • let me know what you think of the gans article.

          • I thought that article was very interesting and I have had many of those same thoughts when wondering why we can’t eliminate poverty, especially in the richest country in the world. After having read some of Ralph Nader’s work I’ve always thought of poverty as kind of the exhaust or bi-product of wealth. Most poor folks work hard. They just don’t get anywhere. I just posted a thought on my blog along similar lines of thinking. Humans need to think differently and perhaps in some parts of the world they already are. I hope so! Have you read “Nonzero” by Robert Wright?

            • very eerie, but i have some notes regarding a post that i was going to write and it is strikingly close to your most recent post. i was musing on the issue of death. actually, more about what happens after we die and how our beliefs about death and dying have the ability to change our lives in the present. i will post it when it is more than just a bunch of seemingly unrelated notes. but…now i wish i had posted it because i think it goes well with your most recent post. i wrote it yesterday after an article i read about psychics, ‘life’ after death, etc.

              i have not read “nonzero.” will have to check it out. and, like i wrote yesterday, if you have not read kozol’s books, at least read one. i will add a disclaimer that jonathan is a friend of mine, but i loved his books LONG before we ever met and long before we were friends. maybe start with “ordinary resurrections.” as for nader, i have not read his stuff but it sounds like he and gans might have similar views. when you read gans’ article, it is difficult not to concede that he has a point. actually, 13 of them! like i said, it’s an old article, but still noteworthy to me.

              i look forward to more discourse in the future! i definitely have a strong interest in pedagogy and epistemology. i work in public education and have a strong interest in how to best prepare and educate future generations. i do not feel “banking” is even an adequate form of instruction. although, if one has to “teach to the test” and their evaluations (i.e. job) rely on that, what else can one do??? oh, boy…don’t get me started on teacher evaluations. georgia (where i am) was in danger of losing $33 million because they had not come up with an adequate teacher evaluation model that DOE will accept. http://blogs.ajc.com/get-schooled-blog/2012/07/03/georgia-at-risk-for-losing-for-losing-33-million-of-its-race-to-the-top-grant-over-changes-to-teacher-evals/ not sure where it all stands now, but just another example of the pressure put on teachers to show their ability to teach and how well they teach by something they truly can’t control…student performance and statistics. one can deposit, deposit, deposit all day but it is up to each student to do their part. if they don’t, no matter how well one teaches (dialogue, baking, etc.), the student will not show progress. how can the way one teaches control that??? how can one’s teaching methods be truly and fairly evaluated via student performance? as with all things quantifiable, within a normative sampling, you will have 68.2% of students within one standard deviation and the rest will fall more than one SD away from the mean. so, if actual statistics would be applied to this, it would seem, to me, that if 68.2% of students fall within that range, then teacher evaluations should be viewed as positive or “making adequate progress.” in my county, they want that number to be 90%. hmmmm…i feel another post coming on!!!

              i look forward to hearing your thoughts. oh, and georgia is a “right to work” state, so no unions to help out and are basically at-will employees (those in the public schools have a bit more protection, i.e. right to fair dismissal, but only after 4 years of being in the system. until that time, one is an at-will employee with no rights to fair dismissal).

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