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Miscellaneous Rambling

Ceiling. Trastevere

My two youngest start school today. Michigan public schools don't start until September 6th, but my diocese has apparently yielded to the largely fictional notion that more schooling equals better schooling, which is like concluding that, the more you eat, the stronger you get.

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Don't get me wrong. I'm sure "study after study" shows that students perform better the more hours they're in school. Thing is, common sense tells you there's a helluva lot more to it than that. It reminds me of those kids in college who "studied" all the time but didn't get good grades. Their "studying" was just time spent staring at the book, or socializing in the library, or pursuing inefficient methods. Those students who were forced to focus their studies into shorter sessions often did better, as evidenced by the number of young parents in my law school who consistently spent a lot of time with their toddlers and scorched the exams.

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And regardless, I don't trust those educational studies, especially when they defy common sense. Studies are conducted by experts. The testimony of the expert, as Marshall McLuhan correctly said, is like a bright flashlight aimed at one's eyes.

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Fascinating story about how Dan Rather and other mainstream anchors tried to steal the 2000 election by telling Central Time Floridians (which is heavily Republican) that their polls had already closed when, in reality, they weren't scheduled to close for another hour. Even more troubling: The deceit was then covered up by both parties.

Ceiling. Trastevere

Feast of the Beheading of St. John the Baptist today. Herod's ears liked him but a different part of his anatomy controlled this decision. Such dichotomies exist in all of us. Zen seeks to neutralize them by "just looking," transcending all such concepts. The Christian seeks to neutralize them by "just loving," transcending all such concepts.

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