Comment history

County Commission to consider permit for shooting range

I'm so thankful I have family with lots of land to shoot on. I couldn't imagine needing to go to a range to shoot all my guns, what a pain.

October 18, 2011 at 12:14 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Lawrence City Commission approves gender identity ordinance

15 < 50. Hardly "usual" in America. Colorado is no surprise, however Iowa is. Let me take a guess at the other 13: California, Oregon, Washington, Vermont, New York, New Hampshire, Mass., RI, Florida, Maryland, Delaware, Jersey, and Connecticut. Without any research on the law I bet I'm not too far off, it would be interesting how many of these I guessed right.

September 28, 2011 at 10:08 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

“The Boomers Did It”

Yes, I've thought of that, hence the reason I've identified it as a problem. And yes, I realize the two problems are mutually perpetuates of one another. And yes, I realize the difficulty in designing a pval for teachers when the underlining structure of the school system is flawed. But that's the point - The underlining structure of the school system is flawed. Bad teachers are protected, good teachers are underpaid, and there is no set way to decipher and classify which is which.....The structure and operation must be fixed.

Your point (very good and valid) highlights this broken relationship between parents, teachers, and the school system. Let me ask you, how many times over the course of a school year did your parents (or you if you have kids in school) meet with the teachers? In my school, my parents met with them once/semester, for maybe 15 - 20 minutes per teacher. Do you think that is enough? Perhaps for a good student, but is it enough for a bad student? Not even close...Also, did the teachers or administrators give insightful information or perhaps lessons on how to help their child succeed? Not where I went to school.

You see, that is the problem. Should a teacher be punished financially for a students bad parenting? Absolutely not. My solution? Document the students' progress, identify as your spouse does the kids that struggle, and inform and equip the parents with the tools to help their child succeed. All the while, an administrator should be documenting that this particular teacher is truly trying to establish an avenue for success through the students' parents. If that teacher has informed the parents of their bad student and that student still doesn't do well, then the teacher shouldn't be held accountable for that student's lack of parenting, therefore that students' test scores shouldn't be counted against the teacher.

In a nutshell, I feel the schools need to get the parents more involved in the academics, good teachers should be paid more, and bad teachers should be open for criticism or termination.

Also, do you think US children are different from any other country in terms of aptitude? I don't think so, why would the US be the superpower it is if we were all stupid? In my opinion, the system is the problem, not the kids....

September 14, 2011 at 10:22 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

“The Boomers Did It”

I would get rid of the bureaucracy plaguing the school system. There are too many people that have a hand in regulation of our schools and problems get mixed up in departments on top of departments and never get solved. It's just too inefficient, it needs to be streamlined and thinned out. We have way too many school boards involved at too many levels, each state with their own way of testing, nothing standardized between schools of different states. I'm not saying I have all the answers, but I have recognized the problem. At least we should guage the teacher's performance, and if they can't do their job right, they get canned so we can make room for a good teacher to come in. Teachers should be able to get fired just like most other jobs out there and not be protected by some "tenure" or union contract. It completely undermines the teachers incentive to do a good job, the fundamental argument against ALL unions I suppose....

The first? Well, the first can't be solved by money nor policy. To tell you the truth, I wouldn't know who or how to solve that problem, other than God Himself. Perhaps teachers and students' test scores of their local schools compared to a national average should be mailed to parents? I don't know, even if you did that it wouldn't necessarily motivate that parent to educate their child better, but at least they would be informed as to how their local school ranks among others. It's a step, but honestly I wouldn't know where to go from there, it's a difficult problem to solve....

September 13, 2011 at 2:13 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

“The Boomers Did It”

Throwing money at education isn't the answer. We've tried that and it hasn't worked. The problem is much deeper than just money. Go watch the documentary "Waiting for Superman" and you'll see how the US has stagnated in education despite all the money we've invested in it.

There are two real problems with our education system:

1) The parents aren't making the required effort to ensure their kids are getting a quality education (it doesn't always have to come from a school you know...). Granted, some parents bend over backwards to teach their kids but it is sadly the minority situation. I wouldn't say most, but too many parents don't give a crap about their kids education, they assume enrollment in school is enough, but the parents need to really study the schools and how they operate to ensure a proper education is being passed to their kids.

2) There is no accountability for a teachers performance. Teachers aren't being put through the paces to find out if they are a good or bad teacher, again, no accountability. Also, there are too many barriers to firing an obviously bad teacher. The unions are a major hinderance in this scenario. Tenure is granted to teachers WAY too early and the emphasis on a good teaching performance is thrown right out the window....

Now, once these fundamental problems are solved (No. 2 can be solved through policy), then we can throw money at education and watch it really improve. I think teachers should be paid more money but their job security should mostly be related to their performance.

September 13, 2011 at 11:24 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

How did you spend your holiday weekend?

I did anti-Lawrence things: Shot a hell of a lot of guns, went fishing, and drove fast cars that burn too much gas. AMERICA, F YEA!!!

September 6, 2011 at 11:05 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Letter grades giving way to ‘standards-based’ marks in Lawrence schools

Yea, let's put "E" at the bottum so we don't put an emphasis on excelling. Just meeting the standard is good enough, right? Pathetic. I expect my kid to always strive for above "standard." ALWAYS!!! Sometimes I think the "educators" are often the most stupid people in the room....They are seriously lacking in common sense....

September 6, 2011 at 11 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

What is the most adventurous thing you’ve done?

Spearfishing and scuba diving with no prior training. At least I was smart enough to take a dive knife with me.

September 5, 2011 at 12:48 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Westar seeks $91 million increase

Correct, it's the federal gov't that is handing down the regs, NOT the state. And to be honest, this was coming down before the Obama administration. It HAS been accelerated under Obama and some other new regs have hit recently but honestly it's not an "Obama agenda." And that's coming from a conservative, just being honest....

August 27, 2011 at 2:59 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Westar seeks $91 million increase

You'd be surprised. The fines exist to prevent massive blackouts that can cost the economy billions of dollars in set backs. And yes, these utilities trim their budgets and often times under-budget certain areas. The fines were put in place to make sure budget dollars are spent in the right areas, mainly maintenance and vegetation control. It's very expensive to maintain infrastructure to meet new regs, hence the rate increase.

And yes, I'm saying without these fines a utility would be more apt to save the money rather than spend it on infrastructure maintenance, fostering a more likely situation a blackout could occur. I can tell you, some utilities really don't give a damn (none around here) about vegetation control, they don't care about the risk of a blackout, they'd rather keep the money than spend it on preventitive maintenance....So that's why the gov't is stepping in to make the grid more reliable, because basically some utilities are very irresponsible....

August 27, 2011 at 2:51 p.m. ( | suggest removal )