Sunday Notes

A few brief notes this evening:

I find the idea of the IRS targeting organizations of any political stripe deplorable. So I was inclined to agree with Ross Douthat’s column when I saw it in today’s The New York Times. I mean, it’s kinda dumb to target a group of people who are complaining of being Taxed Enough Already. But he goes on:

The Tea Party had won its midterm victory, and as the movement’s ardor cooled and its influence diminished, the fears of its critics began to diminish as well. With Beck off Fox and the Tea Partyers off the streets — replaced by Occupy Wall Street and union protesters, often shouting none-too-moderate slogans of their own — it became harder to look at American conservatism and see Brownshirts or grand wizards on the march.

I’d like to remind him that “leftist” organizations — including Occupy Wall Street and Occupy Austin — have been infiltrated by the FBI and local police. That seems a bit more nefarious than targeting a few tax filings.

I’m rather satisfied with the outcome of last night’s Austin ISD bond election. The two propositions I thought were least needed were defeated and the two I considered important in improving our schools (within reason) did pass.

Proposition 2, which totaled $234 million, would have relieved overcrowded schools, which district officials said were among the most critical needs on campuses. The proposition contained three new schools and campus additions that district officials say are desperately needed. It also would have funded a 500-seat performing arts center at the Ann Richards School for Young Women Leaders, something critics called a luxury.

Proposition 4 would have provided $168.6 million for academic programs, fine arts and athletics. That measure had several controversial proposals in it, most notably $20 million for renovations to the old Anderson High School to create an all-boys school.

Columnist Frank Bruni has a good piece in the NYT about “America the Clueless.” With all his statistics proving the ignorance of Americans, I find it interesting he doesn’t mention how little most Americans believe in science.

Here’s a great book on the subject: Anti-Intellectualism in American Life.

Anyone else noticed how in love with data scientists the NYT is?

To be honest, I don’t really have a clue what to make of this profile (?) of Raise Your Hand Texas.

This whine of the plight of the Millennials/Gen Y is interesting. Generation X’s response is even better.

Finally, I’ve had this tab open in Chrome for nearly a week now and every time I look at it I become infuriated. I just don’t understand how we needed to go from two battle dress uniforms (BDUs) to 11+ different versions. What a complete waste of time and money. Also, ever wonder who came up with digital camo? Find out.

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