Tag Archives: talk
The mayor of Providence, the capital of the US state of Rhode Island, is facing criticism after he fired all of the city’s nearly 2,000 school teachers in an effort to tackle a $100m deficit. Not all will ultimately go, but sending dismissal notices to everyone means the city can fire teachers at the end of the school year without regard to seniority. Angel Taveras, who only took office in January, defended the move by saying it was a necessary “protective measure” to help tackle the shortfall.
Al Jazeera’s Scott Heidler reports from Providence.
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It may seem difficult to make sense of decisions made in high offices which effect our day to day lives, like decisions to lay off the very people taking care of the future of our planet, because if the children of tomorrow are not Earths future who is?
When a country with no major disasters or catastrophes to attend to ends up so far in debt that teachers need to be sacked could this be a sign that its entire system of thinking is fundamentally flawed.
Without teachers $100m an be saved, but then what of the students that would have been taught? there seems to be a fundamental common sense logic missing from this equation and the criticism of this decision seems justified.
In Internet chat rooms there is talk of 2011 being the year we see wide spread rioting on the streets of America, the mass scale of decisions made by governors and leaders however could tip the balance, School administrators say “this decision allows us the opportunity to plan it out over the next month or two, to close our gap and educate our kids”. We are not entirely sure how laying off teachers can contribute to the education of kids, but some how the office of Mr Taveras has figured it out.
This is a very brave move by Angel Taveras and on face value it really does seem like the wrong move, however only time will tell if his logic has ground. In the meantime our hearts go out to the 2,000 teachers and their families who face a difficult road ahead.
As I am watching this video of a new fissure eruption at Kilauea Volcano, I can almost feel a red hot ball of lava hitting my skin, and I my only thought is “what if this thing really goes?”
It seems unpredictable as to how intense the eruption will become, although there is talk of more to come.
There is more information here
While all human brains consist of the same material, about 40 percent gray matter and 60 percent white matter, the brain of a man is significantly different from that of a woman. From studies conducted using intelligence tests, it has been determined that men use nearly seven times more gray matter than women do, whereas women use nine times more white matter than men do. The main functions of gray matter seem to lie in the disciplines of spatial awareness, including map-reading, mathematics and problem-solving, whereas white matter connects the processing centers of the brain and is important in the use of language, emotional thinking and the ability to do more than one thing at once.
Because women use more white brain matter, they tend to be better communicators. In fact, the female brain has a greater number of areas associated with communication than the male brain does, which explains why women tend to use language as an emotional rapport-building device whereas men use language to exchange information and solve problems. On average, a woman says 7,000 words per day while a man says only 2,000.
The two hemispheres of the female brain are also linked more effectively than those of the male brain, and they’re more closely connected, which explains how women are better able to multitask than men, who generally have to concentrate on one job at a time. This greater connectivity in the female brain is also thought to be the reason for so called women’s intuition.
These differences are thought to have been brought about by the social roles adopted by men and women in our ancestors’ time. Men, for instance, would go out hunting, often tracking their prey for many days, which required problem-solving and navigation, whereas women needed to be more emotionally and linguistically attuned to protect their home and offspring. In fact, studies show that women with higher than average levels of the male hormone testosterone tend to be able to read maps more effectively than other women.