Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Rationalisation is at hand!

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  • Steve Barnes,

    Apropos absolutely nothing.
    Free Hugs

    Peria • Since Dec 2006 • 5521 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    The Troopergate report just dropped.

    Key finding: Palin "abused her power" and violated the public trust.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22850 posts Report Reply

  • Bob Munro,

    John, you be right there.
    I teach teenagers and many of them simply do not have a critical thinking component operating in their brain.

    A technology teacher was telling me about the frustration he has in preparing boys for level I NCEA.

    He said that 15 year old girls know right through the year how many credits they have, and what they have to do to complete the course, but it is only about this time of year that the boys are catching on and it’s a bit too late. He said it’s not that the end of the year is finally in sight that they wise up but purely that their developmental stages are about six months behind the girls. He’s a strong advocate for allowing Level I to be achieved in the middle of year 12 when the boys will be quite capable of working to a future goal that they are incapable of focusing on six months earlier.

    He said it was very frustrating as a teacher as the students who didn’t complete their year properly, simply left school and took up the trade training options in the polytechnic systems the following year, usually without difficulty as their developmental stage had caught up with the demands on them.

    Christchurch • Since Aug 2007 • 418 posts Report Reply

  • Ian MacKay,

    Yamis/Bob: In the end the answer lies with Motivation, Motivation,Motivation. We are so used to providing the motivation to or at kids that we fail to tap the enormous power of SELF-motivation. This includes Relevance Connectivity. It amazes me that so much attention is paid to making kids get back to school, and ignoring the reasons why not.
    Think of Chris Lilley’s Summer Heights High where we met Jonah, the smart- arse Tongan break-dancer, who was finally dragged from the school. A brilliant piece of commentary, on failing to manage the problem. "Can't understand why he didn't want to learn!"

    Bleheim • Since Nov 2006 • 498 posts Report Reply

  • Bob Munro,

    In the end the answer lies with Motivation, Motivation,Motivation

    I agree 100% with that. Our own daughter has been in the Discovery/Unlimited self-directed learning schools here in Christchurch and her motivation has never wavered. But these schools operate on basic principles far distant from the standard state school where my technology teacher friend works.

    Incidentally a primary school teacher friend was telling me they used the Jonah segments of Summer Heights High in a staff development session.

    Christchurch • Since Aug 2007 • 418 posts Report Reply

  • Bob Munro,

    The Troopergate report just dropped.

    Key finding: Palin "abused her power" and violated the public trust.

    Funnily- half an hour ago the New York Times had the headline Palin abused her 'authority' but have now changed to the actual words in the finding, abused her 'power'.

    http://www.nytimes.com/

    There are some very happy mudflatters.

    http://mudflats.wordpress.com/

    Christchurch • Since Aug 2007 • 418 posts Report Reply

  • mic weevil,

    Isn't it a fact that their brains aren't fully formed at that age? Aren't they hormonally confused at that age?

    so your hormones play a role in your voting habits?

    I think including young people in the electoral process would have nothing but positive effects in terms of increasing electoral participation and awareness in the population overall. by the time people are 18 it is often too late to engage them in the process and currently there is little in the way of education about our political system.

    I don't deny the dangers of political marketing to children, but we've coped with that in other areas. with a good education program I think it could work.

    auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 52 posts Report Reply

  • Lucy Stewart,

    I don't deny the dangers of political marketing to children, but we've coped with that in other areas. with a good education program I think it could work.

    Do remember: jurors are drawn from the electoral rolls of the area surrounding the court requiring a jury. That's a *big* can of worms right there.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2105 posts Report Reply

  • tim kong,

    It's not just an issue of "Motivation" - it's getting students to understand that effort leads to results. And to get better results requires better effort. In any field of endeavour.

    For my part - as a Year 7&8 teacher (Form 1&2) - adding political discussion and electoral participation into your daily plan is fine - as long as you (parents/community etc) are happy that something else gets dropped.

    That could be reading, writing, math work, or it could be fitness, healthy eating, and PE. I've already dropped the proposed "dog control lessons" from my programme.

    If on the other hand you integrate some electoral awareness into tracking polls and possible MMP configurations vs an FPP result in a series of math sessions - or if you studied the language of political/media speaking in your literacy sessions (How many times did you hear the politician say 'pathetic' as a response? Why do you think they're all using that word?) - then you'd cause some thinking in brains, that while not fully formed, do demand answers and are usually quite inquisitive about the world around them.

    And yes - I know that's a horribly constructed sentence.

    But for me - that'd be more effective than some form of constructed Ministry led education programme.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 153 posts Report Reply

  • Hilary Stace,

    Tim - that's an example of the the sort of political education I had in mind. And most Year 7 and 8 year olds have participated in some sort of election process, either for class reps or a mock one at national or local election time. The more practice we have at democracy at all levels the better we will get at it.

    The 12 year olds of 2020 (those babies born this year) will probably be as sophisticated as the 18 year old new voters of 1975.

    Wgtn • Since Jun 2008 • 3227 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Parks,

    Mic weevil wrote:

    so your hormones play a role in your voting habits?

    Actually, yes. But so do a lot of other factors. So you're right, it ain’t a strong argument in the “who should vote” debate.

    Lucy:

    Do remember: jurors are drawn from the electoral rolls of the area surrounding the court requiring a jury. That's a *big* can of worms right there.

    Then close it by changing the law, if that's a valid concern. We don’t allow people to buy alcohol at the same age as they can vote. Separate issue.

    Wellington • Since May 2007 • 1165 posts Report Reply

  • Lucy Stewart,

    Then close it by changing the law, if that's a valid concern. We don’t allow people to buy alcohol at the same age as they can vote. Separate issue

    With all due respect: WTF, dude? It's eighteen for alcohol and voting, and has been for quite some time now.

    The point is more that jury duty has always been a basic responsibility required of voters, or at least those registered to vote. If someone isn't mature enough to sit on a jury, then they're not mature enough to vote. Age issues are always tricky because you're drawing a line in the sand when people are rather more fluid, but, currently, eighteen is the age at which one is considered an adult with all the rights and responsibilities that entails. I don't see why voting should be a special separate thing that someone is suddenly mature enough to do earlier than every other adult responsibility. If they're not old enough to run their own lives, they're sure as hell not old enough to decide who runs the country.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2105 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Parks,

    Again, 15 year olds also have interests, and also need representation. Where do you draw the line?

    As low as I can get away with. That relentless downward pressure, you see…

    Don’t dodge, I/S. I’m not asking what you think you can get away with; I’m asking where do you draw the line? Personally, I’d be happy for dropping the voting age to 14, at least.

    John wrote:

    My 14 year old niece just wants the latest cell-phone ... I'm not sure if she's ready to select the next government.

    Is anyone suggesting a voting system that allows only your niece to select the next government? I have a 40-year-old uncle who’s a complete fucktard. He can vote. I have a niece with reasonably intelligent opinions about the world. She can’t.

    Russell wrote;

    I teach teenagers and many of them simply do not have a critical thinking component operating in their brain.

    Confer my previous anecdote. Also, when people get older they get more senile. (Seriously, aren’t there other posters here who know some old people who just don’t have a clue anymore?) Should we take away the right to vote when we consider Gran has got just too dottery?

    While I’m on the old people voting theme: I love Sarah Silverman's plea to get old people to vote for Obama.

    Wellington • Since May 2007 • 1165 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie,

    Should we take away the right to vote when we consider Gran has got just too dottery?

    Good point. While she (or Grandpa) may be denied a drivers licence on account of being certified as a dotard, they retain the right to vote.

    I have a 40-year-old uncle who’s a complete fucktard. He can vote. I have a niece with reasonably intelligent opinions about the world. She can’t.

    I know of two cases where someone receiving an invalid's benefit due to an intellectual disability has performed jury duty. In one case a caregiver attempted to object, but was told to butt out. If someone's legally an adult and keen to serve they're free to do so.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4593 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Parks,

    Lucy wrote (with all respect due):

    With all due respect: WTF, dude? It's eighteen for alcohol and voting, and has been for quite some time now.

    Oops!… Good point. But importantly, we (“we” being society) didn’t automatically assume being old enough to vote and being old enough to buy booze was the same thing. And many are of the view that they shouldn’t be again. Ages for things like driving, marriage, voting, and owning firearms are not always considered as a given to be the same.

    If someone isn't mature enough to sit on a jury, then they're not mature enough to vote.

    I know people over 18 who aren’t mature enough to sit on a jury.

    Age issues are always tricky…

    My point exactly.

    If they're not old enough to run their own lives, they're sure as hell not old enough to decide who runs the country.

    Again, so really old people should have their voting rights taken away??

    Wellington • Since May 2007 • 1165 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz,

    Is anyone suggesting a voting system that allows only your niece to select the next government?

    Good point, 16 & 17 year olds wouldn't be the *only* voters.

    We allow people whose brains have atrophied from old age to vote - mostly for NZ First.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5550 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Parks,

    Good point, 16 & 17 year olds wouldn't be the *only* voters.

    Actually, Rich, I think it was an objection to 12-year-olds voting that got the latest exchange going. But otherwise, yeah - if "brain too young to make decision in own interests" flys as a reason for not letting someone vote per se, then why not "brain too old..." Yada yada yada...

    Wellington • Since May 2007 • 1165 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    I just love the way we use age as a substitute for competence, when that's what we're really trying to establish.

    I've met 14 year olds whose judgement I trust and 64 year olds I wouldn't. Fortunately most people are in between.

    However, some of the denizens of the foaming nutblogs shouldn't really be trusted in a polling booth or a courtroom (or a classroom, for that matter).

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19745 posts Report Reply

  • nic.wise,

    Paddy Free track: yay! It's awsome!

    Only available on CD: boo :( I dont have a CD player, and we have 3 ipods (Well, my Mac is, but what use do I have for a plastic disk?)

    I guess I have to wait for the MP3s on amplifier, or until it comes out on itunes.

    On the upside: new Rhombus!

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 87 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Rowe,

    Speaking of older voters, this tickled my fancy, from the Times.

    The Great Schlep

    Lake Roxburgh, Central Ot… • Since Nov 2006 • 574 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    And speaking of competence, how does a blithering fool like Coddington actually get paid for writing such crap.

    She goes on about how hardy farming types respond to a downturn, without making any connection with what Cullen for all his faults has been doing. Was she really this stupid as an MP?

    </rant> Anyway, if you want a relaxing day, don't feel compelled to read her delusional ramblings. Although they are a fascinating study of immature entitlement in the pampered boomer.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19745 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Campbell,

    If you're going to mention "The Great Schlep" you have to include Sarah Silverman's promo

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2006 • 2622 posts Report Reply

  • Spinner,

    TEENAGER #1: I'm sixteen, I'm old enough to marry and have children, but I can't drink in pubs. When will the government wake up and realize that young adults are mature and responsible people?


    TEENAGER #2: I'm sixteen, right? I can join the Army, the Air Force and the Navy... but I can't drink in pubs. When will the government, right, realize that young adults have a valued contribution to give to society?

    [This TEENAGER is sniffing glue. He reacts visibly before speaking.]

    TEENAGER #3: A lot of people say that young adults are violent, right? But how would you feel if you were old enough to have... intercourse with the partner of your choice... and yet you could not drink in pubs?

    --INT: STUDIO/DANCE FLOOR

    BAZ: There you go! That's the problem! What do you with an evening if you're a young adult and yet you can't go drinking in pubs?


    BAZ: Now what I think is if the kids are united, we will never be divided!

    [RICK kicks in the TV screen. The tube explodes in a cloud of sparks. He stands up angrily; MIKE also stands up.]

    RICK: Did you see that? Did you? "The voice of youth"! They're still wearing flared trousers! Why don't you try a bit of poetry, you hippies!

    Remmers • Since Jul 2007 • 24 posts Report Reply

  • Jan Farr,

    Anyway, if you want a relaxing day, don't feel compelled to read her delusional ramblings. Although they are a fascinating study of immature entitlement in the pampered boomer.

    Too late. I somehow couldn't stop my crap loving mouse from clicking on the link! You have to admire her though for her mastery of the great illogical leap.

    Carterton • Since Apr 2008 • 395 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca,

    Typical
    But you knew that, didn't you.

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6796 posts Report Reply

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