Thursday, June 7, 2007

Friday random thoughts

• The California High School Exit Examination might be "just fine," as one Tracy Unified official told me Wednesday, but there is a question as to whether we should do so much testing at all. With all the preparation for standardized achievement and aptitude and college entry tests, it's a wonder there's any time left for real learning.

• Maybe there's a test we can have to see if students are taking the right number of tests?

• So the compromise immigration bill was all but sunk in the Senate. Now the true test: will any of the folks who helped torpedo this legislation come up with a better alternative? I have my money bet on "No."

• Speaking, of, it's amazing to me how each generation of nativist Americans has a new, different way to wrap up xenophobia in a package that somehow seems reasonable at first glance.

• Paris Hilton was released three days into a measly 23-day sentence. Seems that, even in America, there's more justice for some than others.

• A John Upton report on Friday said a local developer is proposing to sell 15 percent of its planned houses to public servants (teachers, firefighters, police) and low-income residents for significantly reduced prices. It's a wonder the proposed sports and aquatics park deals didn't include something like this. You know, something that contributes to actual community.

• That old, warm fuzzy Cold War feeling: President Bush and President Putin are rattling the nuclear saber. Aaaah, just like old times.

• We're spending thousands of dollars figuring out how to fix the City Council Chambers dais. Didn't Councilwoman Irene Sundberg lodge her complaint about the dais' height 8 weeks before the damn thing was finished? Glad the contractor acted so quickly to fix the mistake.

• Random thought of the week: "War is the most uncivilized aspect of the civilized world."

• Calvin and Hobbes quote of the week: "The problem with being avant garde is knowing who's putting on who."

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