Another bad idea, poor executed

In May 2020 I wrote about the Philippines’ terrible idea to close schools for a year. It now looks like stretching into two. Quotes from self:

Keep in mind that many families are very poor and lack internet access.  Even if they have it, connections tend to be slow and unreliable.  There is not a good alternative to physical lessons that will be available in the near future.

Let’s say, in an absolute best-case scenario, we develop an effective vaccine against Covid-19 in two years.  It’s probably impossible, but let’s imagine.

It turned out to be one year but the Philippines will not have the population vaccinated any time soon. In fact, my present estimate is never.

What are they doing about education in the meantime?

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How to preserve Western culture

Edit: This was written before recent events, so it may seem quaint.

I have written before about how civilization is threatened because of low birth rates, and, in the West, because of such high levels of migration that assimilation is unlikely.

Commenter and fellow blogger Phil Ebersole suggested that a greater threat to Western civilization might be our own lack of cultural literacy.

I’m not convinced that this is the larger danger, but it is an issue.

It can be easier to see it when looking at a different culture. Consider

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The language wanker

I’m a language wanker.

My underlying motivation for learning languages is to show off how awesome I am.  I imagine just happening to meet someone from that country in an unlikely place and amazing everyone around by having a good old chinwag with them.  I picture a situation where someone cannot make themselves understood and I happen to come along and save the day.  Kind of like how Read More

Adventures in communism – education

Part One of this series is here.

[Written in Africa]

Every true communist country must have a communist education system in order to inculcate future generations with the shibboleths of the prevailing overlords.

There was once a time when hysterical American magazines squealed that Soviet education was vastly superior and that soon all those brilliantly schooled Ruskie kids would build super atomizing lasers and point them at America and their own kids would be too dumb to do anything about it.  Or something like that.

But I cannot be completely dismissive of the education system here.  Compared to other African countries, Read More

The indoctrination of children

There have been several studies examining brainwashing and it seems that it doesn’t work well or not for very long.  Indoctrinated PoWs or cult members tend to revert back to their normal selves after leaving that environment and returning to the familiar comforts and habits of home.  So that’s good.  I cannot find said studies now to link but evidence is for fascists.

However, there is one group that is exquisitely vulnerable to any sort of brainwashing, be it political, religious or otherwise: Read More

Ban Recess


In a school playground somewhere in the United States, a terrible and entirely preventable tragedy occurs.

A ten-year-old boy, already known for his recklessness and lack of foresight, stands perilously upon the top of a slide.  He looks over to a group of girls and waves both arms, ensuring that they are watching his antics.  They are.  They pretend to mock his foolishness but nevertheless give him their full attention and ignore the boys playing more sensibly down below.

And then – no one knows quite how – he teeters.   Read More