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April 2012

"There ain't nothin' more powerful than the odor of mendacity!"

These two are just horrible. Let's stop this mendacity ASAP.

"Senate Votes to Abandon Budget Control Act".

One principal lesson can be drawn from this experience. It happens all the time that Congressional leaders will trumpet a budget agreement that allegedly saves the taxpayers trillions of dollars–not now, of course, but in the “out years.” But the out years never come. Tax increases are rarely deferred to the out years; they take place now, when it counts. But spending cuts? Never today, always tomorrow.

"Obama's Latest Plan to Snooker Seniors".

The electoral significance of these facts would hardly have been lost on the President's political advisors when they learned that Obamacare's MA cuts would be unveiled to the nation's most reliable voters just before the November election. The resultant vision of surly seniors lining up in their millions at the polls to pull the lever for Mitt Romney presumably produced urgent emails and frantic phone calls, followed by a terse directive from the White House to Obama's creatures at CMS to come up with plan to put off the cuts until after the election. In due course, an $8.3 billion "demonstration project" materialized that would "temporarily restore Medicare Advantage funds so that seniors in key markets don't lose their trusted insurance program in the middle of Obama's re-election bid."

"At Virginia Tech, computers help solve a math class problem"

The future of (some) college courses:

The Emporium is the Wal-Mart of higher education, a triumph in economy of scale and a glimpse at a possible future of computer-led learning. Eight thousand students a year take introductory math in a space that once housed a discount department store. Four math instructors, none of them professors, lead seven courses with enrollments of 200 to 2,000. Students walk to class through a shopping mall, past a health club and a tanning salon, as ambient Muzak plays.

Link via my older daughter.

Arnold Kling opines, "I think that the main capability that computers lack is the ability to interact conversationally with students, offering hints and encouragement as they try to learn. Solve that problem, and I believe you can automate education."