Saturday, December 31, 2016


The long, lonely dark road
Is the one a man must walk
When row after row of curtains
Close upon his mind.

I want to say …
Don’t argue with me …
The road is dark
When my words fly away
And all I am left with is

Once I was great
Now I am brought low
My greatest strength betrays me (my  mind)
Row upon row of curtains close upon me.

I hurt the ones I love
I don’t mean to … but it happens
Row upon row …
Dark, lonely roads.

Friday, December 30, 2016

The Accomplishments of the Obama Presidency

As the year is closing out and with it, the Obama presidency, it is time to look back and list the accomplishments of the 44th president. In doing so, it is important to understand this is a list of what the president did, whether you think it was good or bad, whether you like him or you don’t like him; controversy will not be allowed about the list. Opinions have been shared widely and freely over the eight years Barack Obama has led the nation. If you have more to say, go elsewhere. All I’m trying to do is to list what he accomplished during his two terms. In that spirit, please feel free to offer suggestions as to what I have missed.

1.       Affordable Care Act. Perhaps his signature accomplishment.
2.       Withdrawal of ground forces from Iraq and Afghanistan.
3.       Authorizing the raid in Pakistan that resulted in the killing of Osama Bin Laden.
4.       Authorizing navy snipers to kill the pirates that held an American merchant marine captain hostage.
5.       2009 Public Works spending on ‘shovel ready’ projects.
6.       Race to the Top and NCLB waivers in education.
7.       Opening to Cuba, reestablishment of diplomatic ties with the Cuban government.
8.       Engineered the treaty with Iran about their nuclear program.
9.       Led NATO (prodded by HRC) to conduct air strikes on behalf of Libyan rebels fighting the Qaddafi regime.
10.   Continued the program of using drones to assassinate Al Qaeda, Taliban, Daesh (you hear them reported as ISIS or ISIL), and other Middle Eastern terrorist leaders.
11.   Allowed the regulatory agencies to publish numerous new rules regarding fuels used by power plants, for-profit colleges, practices of the financial sector, &c.
12.   Prevented leasing of off-shore Atlantic parcels for oil & gas exploration.
13.   Created the Consumer Finance Protection Agency through the Dodd-Frank Bill.
14.   Ended the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy and allowed openly same-sex oriented persons to serve in the Armed Forces without threat of sanction or discharge.
15.   Student loans for college now come from the federal government rather than having the federal government guarantee loan repayments for private lenders.
16.   Signed the Paris Accord on climate change.

That’s all I can think of, but I am sure you will want to add others. The only rule is that it must be a direct action of the president. For example, to say he created a million new jobs does not qualify unless he hired a million people for new White House staff positions. Perhaps you think something on the list should be deleted? Explain why. This is a retrospective of what the man did regardless of how we feel about it.

Sunday, December 4, 2016

Then versus Now: Geometry

The question I’ve been wondering about is when did we lard up secondary mathematics courses to the point where there was too much content to teach in a year? Or has it always been this way?

Quite honestly, I don’t remember my high school math courses: too long ago.

Thus my mission to acquire math textbooks from the time when I sat in the desk watching a teacher explain math.

Recently, I was alerted to a series of textbooks written and co-written by Mary Dolciani. My correspondents said she was the best. I then turned to Amazon to find used books and scored, that is, I was able to find the books. I had been searching for a year.

Here is the comparison for Geometry between a 1969 Dolciani text and the current Pearson text via the table of contents:

Basic elements of Geometry: definitions and terms
Tools of Geometry: definitions, terms, and initial postulates and theorems
Principles of Logic
Reasoning and proof: logic (plus vertical angles
Initial Postulates and Theorems
Parallel and perpendicular lines
Perpendicular lines, basic angle relationships (vertical, supplementary, complementary)
Congruent Triangles
Parallel lines and planes
Points of concurrency and other relationships in triangles
Congruent Triangles
Quadrilaterals; triangle inequalities
Right triangles and trigonometry
Right triangles and trigonometry
Volume and Surface Area
Coordinate Geometry: methods
Coordinate Geometry: proofs


Volume and Surface Area

Of all the secondary math courses, Geometry is the least subject to cramming down the curriculum because you can move radical functions from Algebra 2 to Algebra 1, but there is nowhere to push down a topic like triangle congruency, not at least as long as we continue to follow the century-old practice of teaching the branches of mathematics in isolation.

(Yes, Algebra 2 students complain loudly about taking a year off from algebra to study geometry and then we expect them to recall perfectly everything they learned in Algebra 1.)

(No, the rest of the world does not do this. They create integrated courses that move the students through their years of study in which all branches of mathematics are present.)

Two big takeaways:

                One: I was wrong that trigonometry being introduced in geometry was a recent development. It has been there all along. What is added to what had been was additional study of triangles. The points of concurrency do not appear in the 1969 textbook.

The problem with the pedagogy that is pushed upon teachers and students by non-experts is that the non-experts believe that if something is nice to know, it has to be known and therefore added to the curriculum. Or as someone said 10 years ago, Florida has never found an additional benchmark it didn’t like. We are always adding and never subtracting until there is simply too much to learn in a year.

Dopes. Children are not computers; you cannot upgrade the CPU and memory chips and get more capacity.

                Two: The 1969 textbook takes longer to establish the basics before moving onto more advanced ideas. The current textbook throws ideas out quickly and assumes children will make sense of them with little work.

In practice, that is the deadly sin that dooms district curriculums written to satisfy state demands. Math, and Geometry in particular, is sequential. What you did not understand yesterday will hurt you today. If that goes on long enough, despair and failure are the only ends at which students will arrive.

Next Up: A comparison of Algebra 2 textbooks.

Thursday, November 24, 2016

An Argument with a Reformer (Hypothetical)

Public schools are failing.

Chicken Little rides again.

Schools are terrible. We must do something.

Mmm, hmm. How do you know?

Everyone knows. Kids leave school and are unable to find a job.

How do you know?

Everyone knows. Inner city schools are the worst.

How do you know?

The data shows it! (Hot damn, slam down, public school advocates can’t argue with data.)

Let’s talk about data. Where does it come from?

We get it from the states. They do annual testing, as required by federal law, and the results clearly show our schools are failing.

Now we’re getting to it.

How can you argue with data?

Lies, damn lies, and statistics. Wish I had said that, but Mark Twain beat me to it.

But I’ve got data, based upon the latest, greatest testing.

Yes, you do. Data generated by a test so bad that all a student has to do is answer 28% of the questions correct and you say that’s a pass. Data generated by a test that is so bad that you have to norm the results. For folks who don’t know the lingo, that means that states curve the results.

Shut your mouth.

A test so bad … but what you do is worse. You set the pass rates at predetermined levels. You have data that was designed to be what you wanted it to be. Rather than give a fair test, you decided that a certain percentage of students will pass and the rest fail, no matter how they actually perform. To cover your tracks, you make the test incredibly difficult so no student can pass. Even the student with an IQ of 225 and should be several grade levels ahead cannot score above the traditional 70%--C level.

Shut your mouth.

In your dreams. I know more, so much more, and I am going to expose you—because I’ve studied the data and I know what it really means.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

30 Days of Thanks

I could easily do another 30, but these will have to do:

The challenge is to post every day in November something one is thankful for. Every day is beyond me, but I’ll put it together in one essay.

1.       A dry roof over my head, even if it is leaking (I think) and needs replacing (for sure.)
2.       A job that allows me to maintain a decent standard of living because I earn a salary that allows the same. It’s not enough to maintain a family, but it’s just me.
3.       The freedom to speak my mind through letters to the editor, social media posts, and other means.
4.       Family.
5.       Jalen Ramsey, who won’t accept losing as a way of life. Shad Khan should fire Bradley now and put Ramsey in charge for the rest of the season for the express purpose of telling the rest of the team that losing is not acceptable.
6.       My students. All of them.
7.       Electricity. We take it for granted. We shouldn’t. Has Matthew faded so quickly that we forget how much we depend upon it?
8.       Good water. All I do is turn a knob in more than one room of my house and I can drink what comes forth. I don’t have to walk three miles to a bad well or polluted river to fill a jar and drag it back to my house.
9.       Dogs. (OK, cat people, I’ll give a tip of my hat to your pets, too.)
10.   Supportive administrators. With a few, maybe only one, exceptions, I have been blessed during my teaching career.
11.   An understanding God who always had a direction for my life and was tolerant of all the wrong turns I took until I arrived at the place I was born for.
12.   Freedom to worship that God openly.
13.   The ability to love. I feel sorry for ants, who do not have this capacity.
14.   High School friends, who should have gladly shed the connection after the walk upon the stage, but have sought me out on Facebook to reconnect.
15.   My van. Sounds selfish, but I really like it.
16.   Create Space & Amazon. I have a direct outlet for my work as a writer and publisher.
17.   Hats. Most of mine have now degenerated into the trash (hint, hint, Christmas is coming, family), but I really like having a good hat to wear. Not a ball cap, but one with character: think fedora.
18.   Doctor Who.
19.   My local IGA, since I live out from the concrete environs of the city, when I need a little something for a meal, I don’t have to drive 10 miles to get it.
20.   Amazon Prime and two-day free shipping. I can order online and it shows up on my doorstep.
21.   My USPS mailperson. Always cheerful and ready to serve. I don’t mind walking out to get the package because she works very hard and if I can save her a few steps, I will.
22.   The many people I have met in the writing world; few are selfish, almost all promote a fellow writer in addition to themselves.
23.   Skinks, newts, or whatever you call them. I live in a climate warm enough for these critters to find their way into the house on occasion.
24.   Snakes. Yeah, I don’t like them either, but they eat the mice and rats that I would otherwise have to deal with.
25.   Paxon School for Advanced Studies. (You know who you are, you gotta give me a like for using the name that you want.)
26.   Life itself. Health, a good heart, and a body free of cancer. (Not that I had cancer at one point, but you know what I mean.)
27.   One great nephew and a fantastic niece.
28.   Sunrise. No matter how bad or good the previous day was, a new one always dawns.
29.   Deep cold. Without two or three freezes to kill the bad bugs in the ground, we have a terrible Spring and Summer. I don’t like going outside in the first week of April in the middle of the day and being covered with mosquitoes and flies.

30.   Books.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Waiting for Superman or the 'Great Teacher'

A few years ago, a documentary film was produced under the title, “Waiting for Superman.” It criticized public schools, in particular, public school teachers. It followed the stories of a few students and the schools they attended with an emphasis on how they waited to receive the education they deserved. Where was the super-teacher who would save them?

Anyone with a discerning mind could see the privatization agenda behind the film.

The title stuck with me, though, because that part they got right. Everyone is waiting for Superman to show up and save America’s school children, one classroom at a time.

Ignoring the logistic impossibility that 3,000,000 super-people capable of being super-teachers are somehow down on the farm waiting for the call, I want to move on to the new buzz in the teaching world: the Great Teacher.

At the outset, let me confess that I am not a great teacher. Worse, I don’t want to be. Superman doesn’t exist and trying to be Superman is a fool’s errand.

What is the obsession with the Great Teacher? Today in my school email news digest there was a link to a Stars and Stripes article in which teachers identified the Great Teacher who helped them become a Great Teacher. Last July, the Jacksonville Public Education Fund held an event where teachers, students, and others gave their opinions about what made a Great Teacher.

Me, me, me, me, me, it’s all about me. This is what makes me great.

If there is one thing wrong in public schools these days, it’s that we are adult-focused. Our demand for high test scores is a demand created by the need to get good VAM for teachers and principals, rising test scores for superintendents and their staff, favorable publicity for school board members meeting with their constituents and contemplating their re-election campaigns, bragging points for state officials and politicians intent on proclaiming how their policies are working, … it is unending.

Lacking from that list is a focus on the students—the children who go to school every day. We no longer concern ourselves with delivering the instruction that will develop their young lives full of potential and encourage their curiosity to explore the world by seeking out answers to profound questions that will never show up on a reading or math test.

I’m not a Great Teacher and I’m okay with that because there’s no such thing as a Great Teacher. Children are not Waiting for Superman because Superman doesn’t exist. We live in the real world and there is no such person.

Instead, as a mere ordinary teacher, I focus, plan, work, and instruct to deliver great teachING. great teachING, to channel e.e.cummings who never followed conventional capitalization rules so he could emphasize the important words.

That is the difference. Do I deliver great teaching? You cannot get a good answer from me. You will have to talk to my administrators, parents, and students. I can tell you this, parents and students bombard my administrators with requests to be scheduled into or transferred to my classroom.

It’s not about the person being great. It’s not about being extraordinary. It’s about ordinary people doing extraordinary things. That makes all the difference, and no one need wait for Superman anymore.

Saturday, November 5, 2016

Fresh Eggs, November 5

1.       The Philippines: this is what a War on Drugs looks like. Can’t say I approve.
2.       The 2016 election outcome is still hot, heavy, and contested … judging by the number of spam emails in my personal inbox.
3.       Everyone says they can’t wait for Wednesday, November 9 because at last, at long last, it will be over. Just like it was in 2000.
4.       Ha! Do you really think the Trumpster will readily fade away after all the attention his attention-seeking self has been soaking up for the last 18 months?
5.       Trump still stumping for those last 2000 names on the wall. Geez, this has been going on for over two weeks. Polls tightening? But Trump is unable to get only one person to give $49? #Americansaren’tasdumbashethinks
6.       Aren’t hash tags great fun when you can use them to express an opinion you can’t put into your main post?
7.       As I delete, delete, delete my email, I wonder why I cannot get a good gig creating compelling donate-to-me political emails for the big bucks. IJS, I can do much better than the crap that assaults my eye demanding money in the brief moment before my computer gets it off the screen.
8.       INTEGRITY. Thanks, world, for reminding me.
9.       About those hash tags: in front of a numeral, it indicates number; in back of a numeral, it means pounds. Share this with the nearest teenager when you are missing those wonderful eye-rolls only a teenager can do.
10.   Brave New World: I don’t need to hang on my computer to find out the votes Tuesday. All I need to do is ask Alexa (Amazon’s Echo bot that works off my wireless connection).
11.   It’s easy to turn the clock back or forward. But this old body can’t turn its biorhythms back and forward so easily.

12.   When in doubt, root for the Cubs. Every hundred years or so, your ship comes in.

Friday, November 4, 2016

America's Choice

Usually we don’t have the scandals until a new president gets a couple of years into the office. Once the leather swivel chair has adapted itself to the particular contours of the current ‘most powerful derriere in the world’—only then do we begin to hear of new scandals.

That is what has made this election cycle so confounding and so disrupting: the controversies have swirled around the candidates almost from the day they announced.

Donald Trump: the main controversies boil down to three: his comments about women; civil fraud committed by Trump University; Trump foundations fronting Trump business interests.

Let’s take them in order. Don’t ignore the women who have come forward to allege they were victims of Trump’s, oh let’s say, wandering hands. But we can dismiss the Donald’s dismissal of these women because we don’t not need their testimony to understand what he did. He confessed. And forgot. That is the most egregious thing of all: he assaulted women but it was so meaningless to him that he doesn’t remember.

Trump blew the spin. Instead of offering a false contrition, something like I really regret that I hurt some people along my life’s journey, he chose to attack them. Has he checked the statute of limitations? Because this issue reveals that Trump is a political naif. He didn’t bother to have staff to go back through his history and identify these types of comments that might pop up to hurt him.

Does he think rallies alone will win an election? He apparently doesn’t understand the critical importance of a ground game: hundreds of offices, managed by professional staff, directing tens of thousands of volunteers making phone calls, walking the streets, addressing mailers, and so forth.

One of Trump’s dumbest moves was to disrespect Ted Cruz because Cruz had built the organization Trump needs but Trump didn’t bother to patronize Cruz and get his people.

Trump University: it is going to cost Trump billions. Did he not know what was going on? Is this another case of Trump thinking he can put his name on something and turn a loser into a winner? This happened in Atlantic City during the early gambling years. Trump acquired a third hotel, a real dog and loser, and thought his name was good enough to turn it around. The hotel failed. The Trump brand has never been the same.

Lastly, journalism is going on around the Trump foundations. Much spending seems to flow back into profits for Trump personally and his business. There is much more to be learned, but it seems that Trump has been doing on a large scale what Corrine Brown was indicted for.

Hillary Rodham Clinton has her own problems. The email scandal will not go away. Julian Assange’s frothing as a mad dog via Wikileaks is not the problem. Her transgression is well known and cannot be easily dismissed.

It is not that she used an email server. It is that she willfully and knowingly used a private email server for official government business, including the transmission of classified information, in violation of established law.

She can’t claim ignorance. Government officials have had this problem for over 10 years and each case got national prominence in the media.

No, the deeper issue for Mrs. Clinton is that she did it to hide … well, something. She has control issues in which she must control the narrative and the data. We have not seen such behavior since Richard Nixon. Even the 18 and a half minute gap pales in comparison to the 30,000 plus emails she deleted rather than turn them over to investigators because she decided they were personal.
Then there is the pay-to-play operation of the Clinton foundation.

Somewhere along the line will come the obstruction of justice allegation that took Nixon down.

So GOOD NEWS, America. Stop fretting about your vote because no matter who wins, their term of office is likely to be short.

Clinton or Trump, neither will last long.

Your choice is clear: who do you prefer for president? Mike Pence or Tim Kaine?

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Another One Bites the Dust

I work at Paxon High School, a dedicated magnet school for accelerated academics. Students are in one of two programs: International Baccalaureate (IB), in which they take the prescribed curriculum and undergo IB tests in order to earn an IB diploma recognized around the world as prestigious and as an entry ticket into any college/university; AP Honors, in which students take numerous AP courses and undergo AP tests to earn college credits during their high school years.

It is a high school that routinely is ranked in the Top 25 High Schools in America.

Now for the theme of this post:

We lost our Media Specialist this week. The District insisted that the position be eliminated despite the alternate suggestions put forth by the school.

Another one bites the dust.

You would think that a dedicated magnet would be allowed to devise its program in order to attract students: that is the point of a magnet school.

You would think that a dedicated magnet would be allowed discretion to make the decisions necessary to maintain its program.

You would think that a dedicated magnet such as Paxon would need an effective, operating Media Center to maintain its program.

Apparently, you would be wrong.

Another bites the dust.

And if a school like Paxon is not allowed to maintain and operate its Media Center, what hope do you have for our neighborhood schools, where the need for literacy is even greater?

Oh yeah, we have Achieve 3000 for that. No need for a library.

If you believe that, then you believe that the purpose of school is to prepare students to pass tests, specifically one test given once a year in April.

If you believe that, then you believe that children are not human beings with lives of their own, developing according to their age-driven agenda, and worthy of our best efforts. You believe they are test-taking widgets with a job to do and they had better get on with it—like the old Victorians, who believed and treated children as if they were tiny adults.

But know this: Google will never replace a media specialist.

Another one bites the dust.

If we have to have the budget people make the academic decisions, then my District needs to stop half-going about it. Our Media Centers are closed. Sell the books, remove the shelves, and what a big space you have. Large enough to move in a hundred chairs and deliver instruction like the big colleges: large lecture halls with TAs (minimum wage paraprofessionals or even better, upper classmen who don’t need to be paid but can fulfill graduation-required community service hours) to support.

You could still claim to be meeting Constitutionally-required class size requirements.

Don’t stop with Media Specialists; think of all the high-wage teachers you could dump.

Another bites the dust.

Saturday, October 15, 2016

How Eagles Soar

If I was ever asked to give a speech to incoming freshman at orientation, this is what it would be. (Not that I don't give it in parts throughout the school year.)

OWN Your Education. It belongs to you. And it is your responsibility to see that you get it. It is not your teacher's fault if you don't learn. Nor is it your parents' fault. Or your life circumstances.  An education is an inalienable asset: once you have it, no one can ever take it away. But no one can do it for you. You must do it for yourself.

MONITOR Your Learning. Only you can know whether or not you understand the ideas you are required to master. Only you can know if you "get" it or not. Only you can determine when you need help. Your parent tries to make this determination from your grades; your teachers analyze your assessment data to try to identify what you don't know when you don't know it. But they are not the experts. You are. Only you really knows what you have learned and what you haven't. You must monitor your learning and identify what you need help with.

ASK For Help. Yes, ask for it. Your high school teacher has 150 or more students to keep track of. Your middle school teacher has about the same. There is no way a teacher can keep the individual needs of every student at the front of her mind. You must ask. Most teachers will respond with an amazing amount of time and individual attention. But you must ask. If you don't want to ask your teacher, ask another teacher. Surprise, surprise: your teachers are not competitive nor do they have ego needs when it comes to helping you. Most teachers will help another teacher's students. ASK. Or find other tutoring resources. There are lots of options, but it is on you to take the initiative. Go back to the first item: OWN your education. Take responsibility for it.

MANAGE Your Time. Yes, manage it. You are not six years old any longer with a belief in a fairy-tale world. Things don't magically happen. Deadlines are real. The only way work gets done is when you do it. Apply yourself and schedule time every single day to attend to homework, projects, and other assignments that have very real due dates. Do it early. Don't come home from school to eat cereal and watch television for three hours until dinner, then spend the time until 11 PM texting, instagramming, snapchatting, and whatever else with friends, and then turn your attention to the 3 hours of homework you have which is due tomorrow because you left it until the last day. Manage Your Time. Get ahead of the workload and every due date will become easy to meet.

TRACK Your Assignments. Use a planner, keep up on your internet grade portal, write them down. The pitiful excuse that your teacher never told you about a homework assignment is first not true, because your teachers mention them repetitively until they mumble them in their sleep, assignments are written on a board in the room, they are posted on line ...

STOP Your Excuses. We are back to Number One: OWN YOUR EDUCATION. It is your responsibility and only yours. Your years in school are not about getting grades or worse, getting high test scores. Your years in school are about gathering knowledge about the world so that you can understand how it works, the natural world and the world of human society, and make your way successfully through all the years of your life.

I would say Good Luck, but you don't need it. We, your teachers and parents, stand ready to support you. But we cannot do it for you. However, once you decide to do it for yourself, you will find you will achieve your greatest dreams because we stand with you and behind you.

The Social Compact

One of the famous documents cited in every Civics class is the Mayflower Compact. That was the agreement drawn up to which every passenger gave consent as to how the new colony on the shores of Massachusetts would organize and govern itself.

While the wording is rather general, this is what these colonists said about their effort: “ combine ourselves together into a civil body politic; for our better ordering, and preservation and furtherance of the ends aforesaid; and by virtue hereof to enact, constitute, and frame, such just and equal laws, ordinances, acts, constitutions, and offices, from time to time, as shall be thought most meet and convenient for the general good of the colony; unto which we promise all due submission and obedience.

I have given much thought to this over the past few years, but with the corrosive presidential campaign of 2016, in which we will vote for the candidate who disgusts us the least, the idea of the social compact weighs upon my mind more heavier than ever:

What draws us together, what unites us as Americans, in our society?

What do we agree upon? What do we agree should be the fundamental experience of every American who lives within our borders? (For this essay, let us throw aside the argument over who is and is not an ‘American’. I am after something more basic.)

What should every human have a right to expect? What do we agree upon?

I am an observer. I have watched, listened, and pondered. As a society, I believe we share universally the following values:

1.    No one should go hungry.
2.    No one should be thirsty, which means a clean source of potable water should be available.
3.    No one should lack adequate protection of shelter, clothing, and other means necessary to survival because of the vagaries of weather and climate.
4.    No one should be unhealthy due to a lack of adequate medical care. (Catch the nuance: there is still much we do not know and cannot prevent or heal. But of what we do know—no one should be denied the benefit of that knowledge and care.)
5.    No child should languish because of the circumstances of its birth and/or home in which it had no choice.
6.    Everyone should have the opportunity to choose for themselves the life they will have: career, economic level, educational achievement, etc. No one should be denied the opportunity to fulfill their dream because others would not have it so.

Notice I have not mentioned how this would happen or who would pay for it. I am after something more fundamental: what do we agree is the expectation and right of every human who lives within our borders? Only after we have agreed upon that can we dive into the details of how to make it possible and who will bear the cost.

Now it is your turn. What would you add? What would you change? What is your understanding of our social compact—the rights, benefits, and responsibilities we extend and demand of all who live among us?

Fresh Eggs, October 15, 2016

Short, sometimes random and unconnected thoughts about current events.

1.       The Donald Trump imbroglio is NOT a HE said/SHE said situation. The internet needs to stop its attempts to discredit the women who are publicly acknowledging they were victims. It is not their word against his denial. We have his confession, and it is on tape.

2.       There is locker room talk in which strutting males make up wild tales to impress their locker mates, and then there is locker room talk in which males brag about what they did.

3.       God says he didn’t choose either candidate, he doesn’t approve of either, and wishes we would come to our senses. (Everyone else tries to speak for God—why shouldn’t I have a go at it?)

4.       The thing about false prophets is that they are sincere. They really believe what they say.

5.       How do you tell a false prophet from a true one? The things true prophets say come true. The problem is it takes decades, sometimes centuries to discern that.

6.       Vote your conscience. I’ve been saying that for months; let me amend it. LISTEN to your conscience.

7.       Yep. Shut your mouth, find a quiet place, and listen to the “still, small voice” that is speaking to you.

8.       A new definition for hypocrisy: Rick Scott talking about his commitment to clean, fresh water in Florida.

9.       Latest update on the Wells Fargo scandal: the low-level employees who were pushed by upper management to commit fraud, protested, reported ethics violations, and were fired are unable to find jobs in the banking industry. Seems the banking industry has a reporting system in which they file a document stating why they fired the employee. This blacklisting leaves these employees unable to find work that pays a sustainable wage.

10.   Whistleblowing comes at a cost.

11.   Although this is a situation crying out for a junkyard dog, class-action happy, ambulance chasing attorney to take on.

12.   Don’t cry about what Hurricane Matthew did to you if you don’t know that Cat-3 Hurricane Nicole struck Bermuda right at the center half a week later.