In a new segment called “Moment of Joy,” Joy brings up one bright spot in the week. This week, Joy says “Congressman John Lewis brought us many moments of joy through his life. A true moment of joy, and the true testament to his lasting legacy, is that a
Israeli army helicopters struck military targets in southern Syrian on Friday in retaliation for earlier “munitions” fire towards Israel from inside Syria, escalating tensions between the bitter rivals. The strikes came hours after America’s top general Mark Milley made an unannounced visit to the Jewish state for talks on regional security including Iran, a key ally of the Syrian government. Israel said early on Friday “munitions” were fired from the Syrian side of the security fence towards Israeli positions in the Golan Heights, which the Jewish state has occupied since the 1967 Six Day war.
A federal judge on Friday denied a request from Oregon’s attorney general to stop federal agents from arresting people in Portland as daily protests and demonstrations over systemic racism and police brutality roil the ci…
President Trump granted a wide-ranging interview to Barstool Sports founder and president Dave Portnoy this week, drawing ire from many on social media, including Barstool Sports host Dan Katz, better known as “Big Cat.”
The city of Asheville, North Carolina, voted unanimously to approve a reparations resolution for its Black residents. Asheville is taking a different approach to reparations, seeking to confront racial inequities that are far more recent than slavery. CNN’s Abby Phillip reports.
SANTIAGO (Reuters) – Chilean President Sebastian Pinera on Friday signed into law a plan to allow citizens to withdraw 10% of their pensions savings as people queued at the administrator’s offices in Santiago eager for relief from the economic effects of the coronavirus.
The law, approved by two-thirds of legislators on Thursday, was created to give quick cash to millions of Chileans who lost jobs because of the economic shutdown aimed at slowing the spread of the virus.
The Office of the President said Pinera had signed the bill late on Friday but made no comment on its content.
Pinera`s centre-right government had opposed the emergency relief measure, saying it would support citizens through the public purse instead. It has also warned about the longer-term impact on the profitability and already low average payouts of pensions.
Despite those pleas, queues formed on Friday outside the offices of Pension Fund Administrators (AFP), with opinion polls indicating nearly nine out of every 10 Chilean planned to tap their funds. Most said they would use the money to pay for basic goods and services, but others said they planned to invest the money elsewhere.
Economists say that Chile’s battered economy could get a short-term boost, with a total estimated $16.65 billion potentially being unleashed for consumption, according to think tank Ciedess.
However they also warn of the negative impact on the pensions funds, which hold assets of more than $200 billion, which may liquidate local stocks and bond holdings to pay out to savers.
As of December 2019, the AFPs had just over half of their investments in Chile, including 33% in Treasury bonds.
Chile’s Congress is weighing a quantitative easing bill that would allow the Central Bank to buy Treasury bonds on the secondary market, potentially cushioning any funds sell-off.
In Peru, where congress approved a plan to let citizens draw down 25% of their pensions, fewer people than anticipated took advantage of the measure, and the impact on its economy was cauterized by the funds liquidating largely foreign assets, analysts say.
(Reporting by Aislinn Laing and Fabian Cambero; editing by Grant McCool)
A new poll by the Cato Institute shows 62 percent of Americans feel they must censor themselves from openly expressing their political views, in some cases out of fear of losing their jobs or missing career opportunities.
The fear is especially common among conservative respondents, 77 percent of whom agreed that the current political climate prevents them from saying things they believe. This week’s study showed that even among centrist liberals, 52 percent said they must censor their opinions. That compared with 45 percent in 2017, the last time the same poll was done. Back then, 57 percent of moderates said they couldn’t openly express their views. This year, 64 percent of moderates are self-censoring.
Also on rt.com
Only strong liberals feel at liberty in the current political climate to say what they think, though the portion who fear speaking openly increased to 42 percent in 2020 from 30 percent in 2017.
The report reveals a jarring phenomenon in a country that was founded with freedom of speech as the first God-given right enshrined in its Constitution. And the breakdown of the results corroborates the view that only far-left views are tolerated in today’s society. It’s not only staunch conservatives who are being targeted by cancel culture, as evidenced by the resignations this month of New York Magazine columnist Andrew Sullivan and New York Times opinion writer Bari Weiss.
Also on rt.com
Consider that the New York Times stood by its August 2018 hiring of Sarah Jeong to its editorial board, even after it came to light that she had posted racist, anti-white messages on social media, but Weiss was compelled to quit because she said she was bullied by co-workers for being a political “centrist.”
The Cato report also suggests there may be some truth to the theory that many Trump supporters are afraid to tell pollsters that they will vote to re-elect the president. Former Trump press secretary Sean Spicer last month cited a Democracy Institute in America poll showing that 37 percent of Trump supporters would want their friends and family to know how they vote, while 74 percent of Biden backers would be comfortable with their votes being known.
Crucial takeaway in new poll showing why polls will continue to be an issue: “only 37 % of @realDonaldTrump voters would want their friends and family to know how they had voted while 74 % of @JoeBiden supporters are comfortable with it being known, https://t.co/ikK1f5OEnT
“Schools Steal This Joy From Children”: Homeschool & Outdoor Programs See Huge Surge Amid COVID-19 Tyler Durden
Fri, 07/24/2020 – 19:45
School districts and counties across the US, including counties in COVID-resurgent Texas this week, have mandated that all public and private schools not start their school year until after Labor Day (Sept. 7). Even after that Fall start date, some areas witnessing the current resurgence of cases, such as in California, may not return in person at all or at least go to a half-capacity scenario while offering online options for those families in a position to allow their children to stay home. But concerning online contingency plans, the trend appears to be: Remote learning? No thanks.
Bottom line is that school-wise it’s a time of extreme uncertainty and anxiety for families across the US. And then there are the difficult questions of assuming the moment a ‘normal’ school year actually kicks off – will masks be required through the day? will younger students really be able to practice social distancing? will a school shut down completely again the moment a student or staff member gets coronavirus? will on-campus schooling be safe?
Due to these and other lingering questions, homeschooling is set to explode across the US, despite elites at places like Harvard doing their best to push stereotypes of “insular conservative homeschoolers” and the supposed “dark side” of homeschooling as somehow “detrimental” to societal progress. Regardless, all kinds of ‘alternative’ and hybrid stay at home schooling programs are now popping up organically amid continued pandemic and ‘shutdown’ fears. The Wall Street Journal presents hard numbers illustrating the trend in a lengthy report aptly titled: Amid Coronavirus, Parents ‘Pod Up’ to Form At-Home Schools.
Recent polls show up to a third of Americans are “not at all” comfortable sending their children back to in-person schooling given the COVID-19 risks and ‘unknowns’. And likely this figure is higher.
A recent poll of 1,341 families by Pittsburgh-based consumer-research firm CivicScience found that more than one-third of parents with children ages 3 to 17 said they are “not at all” comfortable with a return to school in the fall. In a recent Axios-Ipsos poll of 219 parents of children 18 and under, 71% said they felt sending them to school in the fall presented a moderate or large risk to their household’s health and well-being. Not all families can afford to design their own education program. Some households will see their income decline if one parent works fewer hours to manage academics.
And further, the report details, “In the past three weeks, the National Home School Association has referred about 3,000 parents to local home-schooling groups—compared with a handful, if any, in a typical three-week period says Executive Director J. Allen Weston.”
One observable trend taking place across the United States includes families and students gathering in ‘pods’ to conduct their own small-scale schooling. Neighbors or families who already have connections and trusted friendships with children similar in age plan to gather in small groups of 5 to 10 students at people’s homes or even local churches.
The NYT reported this week that interest in homeschooling is surging this fall due to Covid-19 concerns. Here are some helpful resources.https://t.co/inE88EsCAh
Within the homeschool sub-culture these are akin to what’s often referred to as “co-ops”. This involves a homeschool group teaching children at home for most of the week based on a common curriculum, but coming together as a ‘campus’ at an outside location (such as a church or rented building, or in a residence) for one or two days of the week. This also takes the form of community field trips or nature outings. It essentially allows for highly independent schooling, yet while maintaining a broader “structure” and interactive social life.
Interestingly, as the WSJ underscores, parents are actually seeing in the set-back of coronavirus shutdowns and delays of traditional campuses…“an opportunity”. Consider this damning quote of the current established “system” and the state of public school districts from a commentator cited in the WSJ report:
“Schools steal this joy from children.”
Now parents, at least those with the time and resources to make it happen, can model their child’s educational experience very differently from the mundane 8 or 9-hour campus life (which for many students feels more like a prison) regulated by periodic bells and a restrictive atmosphere of procedures set up to move thousands of students from point A to point B throughout the day, or what some authors like John Taylor Ghatto have called “factory model schooling” which is not based on truth-seeking, as all learning should be, but instead on“schooling an industrial proletariat”.
In a revealing section on the state of mass public education today, WSJ writes:
Home-schooling experts say the approach isn’t just logging in to school virtually. Instead, parents and students seek educational opportunities in everyday life, from reading food labels to learning about nature as they walk through a park, Mr. Weston says. “Schools steal this joy from children,” he adds, and escalating pressure to meet benchmarks on standardized tests hasn’t helped. Not all states require home-schoolers to take those tests, he says. Across the U.S., about 4 million K-12 students are home-schooled, Mr. Weston estimates. He believes that figure will rise to at least 10 million by the end of the 2020-21 school year.
The report gives an example of how pods of new homeschooling communities are popping up organically in response to the crisis:
Myra Margolin, a full-time mother of a newborn and preschooler in Washington, created a Facebook group for families interested in forming home-schooling pods. She expected about 30 families would join and exchange ideas. The group, which launched July 6, has more than 850 members. “People are freaking out,” Ms. Margolin says, with interests that range from convening free-form play groups to hiring teachers for more structured learning environments.
Why attack homeschool now, unless you’re afraid people are waking up to reality? “Hilariously, “arithmetic” was also misspelled in the original. It has since been corrected”
Harvard’s Lazy Attack On Homeschooling via @forbeshttps://t.co/TTYFoKVnrA
All of this begs the question: given that even before the rise of the pandemic, public school districts in many cities were already in a state of crisis – academically, financially, culturally, and otherwise…
Could the 2020-2021 school year (or lack thereof) be the death knell for mass public education?
Tennessee lawmakers last month passed the measure, which prohibits abortions once a fetal heartbeat is detected at around six weeks. The legislation was signed into law on July 13 by Governor Bill Lee, a Republican. Campbell also wrote that the measure would “immediately impact most patients in Tennessee who seek previability abortions.”