“When major-sports college-athletes are able to command big money they can go pro, and many do. But, otherwise there does not seem to be a big market for the athletes that is independent of the colleges. If there were, I think most or all of the top college athletes would leave the college teams and go to that market. If such a market did exist then perhaps college teams could be college teams, and pro teams could be pro teams.”
“Given that taking a MOOC is free and does not require any travel, it doesn't take much expense, or commitment, to start a MOOC and dropout, so I don't think that the dropout rates from MOOCs are really comparable to those of regular classes. Another factor is that students who take regular college classes usually have to qualify in some way, but MOOC do not have qualifications, so it is much more likely that unqualified students can sign-up for a MOOC an then drop. Unlike regular college classes, dropping a MOOC does not cost tuition and does not put an F or W on students' transcripts. In regard to the MIT class with 140,000 sign-ups and "only" a 5% graduation rate...that's 7000 who learned the material and graduated, but paid no tuition! In context, not bad for a tough "Circuits and Electronics" course from MIT.
“Historically humans developed attachments to what they interacted with, mostly other humans but also pets...but also their environment, such as their nation, school, locale, river, ocean, forest, etc. People even developed strong attachments to pagan gods who are now considered pure fantasy. So perhaps attachment is based more on the quality of interaction than on "what" is being interacted with. However, technology may be more or a threat because it can interfere with or substitute for human relationships. When ATMs first came on the scene I resisted using them, preferring the human drive-thru tellers who I figured needed the work, and who were, after all, human. Then I overheard a teller, who apparently thought the microphone was off, make some totally obscene and disturbing comments about her customers...and after that I found ATM far pleasanter to use. That is just to say that technology, which seems to be well-intentioned, polite, consistent and respectful, may sometimes effectively compete with some humans on quality of interaction. On the other hand people do like to trade-in their once beloved cars. It is easier to trade-in old technology for new, but human relationships are far less interchangeable and therefore perhaps more inherently rare and valuable.
“Some all male units lack cohesion, but many military units do maintain and develop military cohesion with women in the unit. There is a cost-benefit trade-off involved in any military personnel decision, apparently the "powers-that-be" feel there will be a pay-off for this decision. It would be interesting to see the difference in the argument in the context of a military draft. If women are indeed combat-qualified, will they be able to avoid combat assignments in the future if they are drafted? Perhaps the flexibility of assignment provided by this change in policy will help make the all volunteer force even more supportable, but the thing about military and combat service is that it is not always voluntary.”
“Such changes in the rules make sense as excessive student-loan debt does fit within the rationale for bankruptcy protection, however it is not clear how such a change in rules may affect the future availability of student loans. Putting a large number of college grads in a state of permanent deep debt (when they actually lack the ability to repay) is bad for the economy since they won't be able to spend their earnings to stimulate the economy. Being in debt-default can harm the students' chances of getting better quality jobs, also harming their potential earnings and long term contribution to the economy. Bankruptcy laws are supposed to make lenders temper their judgment regarding to whom they make loans, but it is not clear that the reliability of people to repay loans can really be determined while they are young students. Writing-off the amount that was payed off under government student loan guarantees will contribute to the national debt, but it may be mostly a bookkeeping change if the loans are uncollectible anyway...still political repercussions seem likely.
“Decisions favoring programs and priorities that support student-success make more sense in an environment were student-success and funding are tied together. By changing the funding formula to pressure colleges to do more to help students graduate the states really change the context in which college decision-makers set priorities and develop initiatives. It is not desirable to water down standards, but it seems that there are many opportunities to improve student success thru methods other than watering down standards...which might include tutoring or study assistance programs; alternative credit programs; emergency financial aid; counseling/advising; greater student employment opportunities; and perhaps even the occasional free meal.
Of course there is a link between recruitment and graduation rate as colleges strive to recruit students who are capable of succeeding academically, however the implication of this article is that recruitment has not proven to be enough to achieve acceptable graduation rates. Across the whole of higher education there are just so many 'sure graduates' to go around. There is no doubt that the in-college environment can do much to improve or reduce the relative success of the recruited students.
“When so many people are hobbled by debt that cannot be discharged in bankruptcy the economy is also hobbled because those people's ability to spend and participate fully in the economy is limited. Therefore reforming financial aid would help the US economy in the long term. The ideal reform, I think, would be to subsidize the colleges so that college is less expensive to begin with. Then when students graduate they will be able to earn, spend, and pay taxes to help keep the economy rolling. Dealing with the problem may require more than financial aid reform, perhaps college for higher risk students can be re-structured to help them get the skills to make a good living without the full sheepskin. But, hopefully, such a system will be structured in a way a to reward people for sticking out the whole degree, rather than dropping out a little early to receive better treatment for their loans.
“I would oppose your proposal of requiring an IQ test in addition to a background check before gun purchase. Similar to your proposal, some have proposed that only high school grads and above should be allowed to purchase guns, and they claimed that that would resolve the high school dropout problem as well...but I oppose that too. However, I think these questions are off-topic. ”
“Actually he said it was an "...outrageous attack.." that was an "act of terror". So I should have written 'terror attack' instead of "terror attack"? Since he also said 4 Americans were killed, I'm still asking what was supposed to be hidden there. It seems to me your comment is playing word games, whereas in reality the facts were revealed there. Now...what is it that the GOP wants to hide? That Obama is doing a BETTER job of protecting US embassies than Bush did maybe? http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2012/10/libya-consulate-embassy-attacks-obama-romney”
“It seems like a record of the digital image, or other ephemeral message, would be possible using a second device, for example, a digital camera could be used to take a photo of the ephemeral message while it is on the iphone screen. Such secondary devices would seem to be able to defeat any "self-destructive" images or messages.
By becoming involved in sending the "ephemeral messages" users open themselves up to being counterfeited, that is, another person could claim the user sent some damaging image or message, and the user would have no record to show it was not true. Perhaps there would be no proof on either side, but there may be occasions where just an allegation could be damaging, and obviously people with power could even hire people to make false claims against any user the powerful person feels is their enemy. However...human speech itself is "ephemeral", unless someone is there with a tape recorder, so it is tough to say what the implications of such technology will be. If it does become a billion dollar technology, I guess that will show either how strongly people want to avoid being accountable for what they said or did; or it will show that people will communicate more openly and effectively if they can do so with total privacy; or perhap it will show that both happen.”
“Just for the record, I want to say that I think people should distinguish between appropriate and inappropriate behavior. For example, the "gun at a political rally" would be an example of something inappropriate. If you do not distinguish between appropriate and inappropriate behavior yourself, you would not be in a position to demand it of others. Modern politics is a rough business and you clearly have to be willing to pay back as good as you get, but at the same time you have to be able to distinguish right from wrong, and should be willing to advocate for right.”
jmk6653 on Jan 26, 2013 at 07:40:53
“so are you suggesting that gun owners in additon to a background check need to have an IQ test or some sort of test that will tell whether they have the common sense to have a gun?”
“Since, in fact, the Obama administration said it was a "terror attack" many times, it is not exactly clear what they are supposed to be covering-up. Maybe the GOP reps should just say what it is that is supposed to be covered-up so it can be revealed over and over and over again until they get it. Benghazi was an extremely highly reported story, with tons of information released...what is supposed to be the secret? Now, the WMD the Bush administration claimed were in Iraq where proven to be total lies, lies that the GOP never did condemn, so the GOP attacks now are clearly personal and political, and counter to patriotism. Johnson's previous attacks on Feingold for public criticism of foreign policy is indeed shown to be dishonest and duplicitous in the current situation, as the article implies.”
Gail Cornelius on Jan 26, 2013 at 10:19:46
“He did not say "terror attack" he SAID "An Act of Terror". If you look up the definition of "TERROR". it means: a threat of FEAR. Feeling of your safety being compromised. The Newtown Tragedy was and Act of TERROR but does not mean a TERROR ATTACK.”
“There are huge variations in the workloads and other demands, and therefore the level of stress, that professors face. Additionally, some are very paid well paid (such as professors at Ivy League schools) while others struggle with much lower wages at less prestigious institutions.
Trying to paint all the varied types of jobs that "professors" have with the same "low-stress" brush really shows a lack of understanding of the field.”
“The point you raised about "political ugliness" is very broad, whereas I was addressing what was appropriate behavior at one specific event. Opposite party members attending the inauguration honor the elected president, and the results of the election, so I think it is a good thing when they show-up, whether the winning candidate is Democratic or Republican. My idea is that elected politicians should not have to feel intimidated from formally honoring the presidential election by their attendance because they will be booed or threatened, even if our political system is competitive and adversarial. ”
jmk6653 on Jan 24, 2013 at 15:10:36
“We no longer have appropriate behavior if politics are involved - not when guns appear at Political rallies”
“Sorry, I don't have a book on that. I think it is good to occasionally honor our unity as a nation. As for "playing nice"...you seem to be implying that by booing Ryan something of substance was really accompliched...as if booing was some kind of political play or move...but I think it was really just an empty display of contempt on a day when a show of respect for our national unity would have been the better precedent. ”
jmk6653 on Jan 24, 2013 at 09:03:26
“I have no problem with your "ideas" but as a country we have come too far from that - and it's not like sitting a child in a corner for a time out - Politics are ugly and I doubt anything we say or think will return it to your standards”
“Actually, I have been very critical of the Tea Party. I think the people who spat on the congressman should have been arrested for assault. However I believe many Tea Party members and the GOPers denounced that episode. Are you saying our day of unity should pay for the ancient sins of a few members of the Tea Party?”
“Are you saying booing Ryan addresses all that...so therefore the booing is justified? America is still called the United States, and we still seem to be capable of uniting when faced with an external threat, I just like us to remember that once in a while, on inauguration day,for example. ”
“Inauguration day should be a day of unity and positivism. Obama has to make a political speech at the inauguration, that is fitting with the occasion. However, the booing of fellow Americans (even if they are politicians) because they represent the other party is not really in the unifying spirit of the day.”
jmk6653 on Jan 21, 2013 at 18:53:32
“You (and many others on here )act as if it was Obama's fault that Ryan was boo'd - do you really think there is a politican that hasn't been boo'd??”
flaconoire on Jan 21, 2013 at 18:50:28
“Booed ? He should consider himself lucky, he could have been pied”
MermiGirl on Jan 21, 2013 at 18:50:05
“Absolutely agree. Thank you for posting what it is all about. Coming together (all of us) for the well-being of our country.”
GeoffreyF on Jan 21, 2013 at 18:46:15
“Talk to the 1 million people who booed him and to even more who did not vote for him.
Did you make such comments when the tea party spit on congressmen and booed them? I'm thinking not. Ryan is a traitor.”
so3001 on Jan 21, 2013 at 18:46:06
“Unity, please. The GOP just spent the last 4yrs telling us how the President was a marxist, fascist, communist, socialist. They deserve worse than booing.”
“The rise in tuition has run counter to the larger trend for technology to reduce cost of services... because it is widely believed that the traditional form of higher education is superior to technological forms (online + elearning). People's perception of the value of online and elearning will have to change for the higher efficiency learning to take hold and change the college systems. Perhaps Western Governors University's alliances with Indiana, Washington, and Texas are models of less costly degrees that could make college more affordable. But...'how well will the graduates of such programs be treated in the employment marketplace?'.
Colleges might be well-served to develop an economy plan for students, with intensive use of online courses, testing-for-credit, dual-credit, and hybrid classes. Perhaps these types of solutions will have to grow much larger to make a dent in college costs. Earning credits thru community college is another way students reduce the costs of college. When college costs are proffered as a huge problem you would think demand for these kinds of money saving options would be huge! I think education using these kinds of programs can compete with traditional college education, but the job-market will be the arbiter.
The number of "buyers" in any market is affected by supply and demand. Perhaps college enrollments have reached some peak in their supply and demand curve so that the recent huge growth is reaching some apex where down trends in enrollments are possible.”
“Once people were called on to justify being on Facebook, but now it seems they have to justify not belonging to it. Facebook fulfills varying functions in people's lives. For example, for some it is a trophy-hunting exercise with competition for the greatest number of friends, but for others it is an efficient way to maintain well-developed family relationships. (And there are plenty of other agendas too!) How well Facebook fulfills those agendas is the most important predictor of its long term importance and success. Perhaps a trend toward rejecting Facebook is a sign that one common adenda, that of presenting yourself as trendy, or "with it", is playing out.