Tuesday, December 20, 2016

In which the pond notes a triptych of reptiles and Terrorists trying to hot the top spot ...

The pond is pleased that there have been some exceptional late-breaking wild card, lone wolf bids to stay atop of the pond heap over the Xmas break, with an excellent contribution by Alan of the chemical bridge leading the way ...

It goes without saying that the pond deplores moral righteousness and all other forms of righteousness, along with socialists, leftists, and greenies, and suddenly has felt the Bern, and seen the Trumpian Putinist light ...

Now the pond has no time for virtue, and such Judeo-Christian notions certainly shouldn't be the basis for foreign policy ... no siree bob, and it reminds the pond of the raw deal that Adolf and Benito kept getting as a result of all those righteous gits calling them out when they were just going about their business merging states to produce an efficient empire for Volks cars...

Why exactly the same is happening right this minute closer to the pond's neck of the woods with all the tut-tutting about North Korea, and Iran, and even our very own Dirty Harry ...

Now that's the sort of handgun the pond could handle, and while we're at it, is there any chance that we could add a strategic risk consultant to all the drug dealers in the line of sight?

Yes, that's just what we need, a far more brutish and competitive world than the previous, because frankly those two world wars and a fair average holocaust or three really didn't cut it and we need to do much better ...

What we need is a more turbulent and dangerous world, and the last thing we need is people jibbering and jabbering in their righteous moral-laden way about the need to give peace a chance.

But what's this talk of moderate policies? That sounds exactly like the namby-pamby righteous policies the pond has routinely and righteously deplored? What we want is brutish competitiveness and turbulent, dangerous excess, and the more the merrier for all ...especially if we throw in a little climate science to speed things along.

But much as the pond would like to linger with Alan of the bridge - oh come on Duterte, surely you could spare one rocket so the pond can prove it's absolutely not into moral righteousness and welcomes brutishness and the killing fields - there's another contender claiming attention... 

Well actually there's two of them seeking to solidify the Terrorists at the top of the turbulent woodheap ..

By golly, that's great, the leftist pink mafia, and over there, Marcus berating the Judeo-Christian activists ... for their relentless political and religious activism ...

Now it's true that the Marcus sounds like a lesser, dumber, blonder form of the Donnelly, but really, would it be right and proper for the pond to stand in her way as she clambers to the top of the pole?

Mmm, can we start off with a little rocket science?

No? Then how about an internet meme of the rocket science kind?

Oh dear, a lesser Donnelly it is ... 

Now what's the bet we're about to be terribly frightened by the competitive face of an Asian girl? Oh fear them, fear them ...

Oh dear, immediate consternation on the pond, and distraction. Streaks ahead or streets ahead? 

Are the report cards shoddy, or are the reports in the shoddy report cards some kind of shoddy?

The pond merely reports and others decide, and how silly of the pond to think that Marcus would be slamming into the Judeo-Christians for their celebration of creationist nonsense it took the enlightenment centuries to wear down ...

Of course one further explanation might be that Marcus is a twit, but the pond won't hear of it.

What we need are mindless robots who conform to the Donnelly/Marcus line! No moral righteousness please, and don't keep the queue moving ...

Shocking. When will the education system teach the value of a .44 magnum? Let's face it, there's too much focus on Judeo-Christian activism in the classroom ...

And so it goes, with the lies repeated so insistently, they become the norm, and the bullying shrieking and howling of the Marcusians fills the air with righteousness ... luckily, in a form approved of by the reptiles ...

Now much as the pond would like to dilly dally with Marcus - why does she keep repeating that stuff about Cheltenham? - there is a prime example to hand of what happens when people muck about with different sexualities and genders ...

Yes, it's the final in a triptych of heavy hitters trying to give the pond title to the Terrorists ...

Now others might think that keeping the company of the onion muncher and having Lyle Shelton at the top of your column is the sort of confusion that should lead to a wake-up call.

Not in Terrorist la la land, where the feuding gets fierce, and moral righteousness turns to hysteria ...

Indeed, indeed, and it takes an even steadier hand to hold an onion ... or drag a cricketer into the discussion, perhaps as a way of ensuring the pond will nod off even more quickly than an Australian cricketer trying to take a catch ...

But apparently an excellent collection of stereotypes, which is a tad rich for someone only a little earlier getting agitated about caricatured notions of community ... (the pond has no Kylie Minogue albums, but isn't that a cheap thrust? Sorry, trigger warning, that was a cheap thrust about a cheap thrust, and we should not place our hope in thrust?)

Never mind, it gets even more ugly and petulant ...


Nasty rancid ghetto full of nasty rancid Kylie Minogue albums?

Well there's a surefire way to demonstrate peace, love and humanity.

And as for the point trying to be made? The pond couldn't quite work it out, but perhaps that was because the pond started thinking that the point was a simpler one, about noses and faces and spite and needless provocations and mindless warfare ... like expecting everyone to love the onion muncher and Lyle Shelton ...

Even worse, that talk of "I am not an animal, I am a human" brought out a strangely inhuman desire on the part of the pond to join Marcus in running a meme ...

Or an onion lover, or a Lyle Shelton devotee, or whatever ...

By golly, it's going to take a herculean effort of moral righteousness to dislodge this triptych of reptiles and Terrorists from the top of the pond page ... and congratulations to the solitary reader that made it this far ...


  1. "...congratulations to the solitary reader that made it this far "

    Ya got me again, DP. Oh, but what an epic journey.

    But I did love our Singaporean dancing scholar's pronouncement about the "realist strand of foreign policy practised by all States for most of the past 500 years."

    Oh yeah, what a huge success story that's been: 500 years of peace, growth and love all throughout Europe and all parts of the world visited by civilised, peace loving Judeo-Christians. A total triumph of "putting interests first" to "make Judeo-Christianity great again".

  2. These reptiles are full of it, plus overflowing spite and spin.


    And full of omissions in their cause of disinformation, or outright lying as the case may be:



    1. Tush now Anon, let's not have anything said against soft dictatorships doing their best to ensure the sheep will chant in unison, or at least sing along mindlessly with Marcus ...

  3. Hi Dorothy,

    I wonder if the OECD Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) is actually measuring like for like when ranking educational achievement between countries.

    In first world countries the recent trend is to try and include children with special needs into mainstream education in order to minimise the stigma of physical and mental disability.

    I suspect in Kazakhstan no such enlightened program is in place.

    Just a thought.


    1. I also wonder, DW, what Australia's high rate of immigration might do - if, for instance, there's a fairly significant number of immigrant kids for whom English is very definitely not their first language, but who are nonetheless included in, for example, the literature tests before they have become acclimatised to Australian schooling fairly exclusively in English

      Would that have any impact perhaps - especially an impact not felt in Kazakhstan, or Singapore. Or contrariwise, are those who are 'tested' selected so as to not introduce such factors. And if so, who does the selecting and on what basis ? A high Latino immigrant population might also affect the scores of the USA, for example.

      If I ever get up any actual curiousity, I might even try to look up those tests and see how they're administered in various locations.

  4. I am amused by the education pundits who lament that Oz student achievements have "flat-lined" and at the same time that our students are "failing" in "free fall".

    They cannot see the contradiction.

    1. Which surely established the point precisely.

  5. GrueBleen

    According to the pundits, like London Bridge, standards in Oz have always been falling down. Yet they try to claim that at some time there was a "Golden Age" of education. Of course, there never was.

    As for comparing apples with oranges, we can see the difference when we compare the Finnish system and our own and also consider the nature of the population. Ask, for example, how many Finnish students speak Finnish as a second language.

    Then we have the much lauded school in Shanghai: top flight selected students, preparing for entry into USA universities, team teaching and mentoring with teachers given half time to prepare, with further cramming and tutoring beyond school hours in other cram schools for the students, who then go home to homework.

    Education is not of such interest in Oz, nor is there the motivation found in some countries.

    As well, education is a whipping post for the media because it can be used politically. Hence the weird and conflicting information and propaganda abounding, even though we have umpteen education institutions, universities, schools - and so many pundits who have not been in a classroom for decades. But of course everyone knows all about education because we have all - to some degree - been to school.

  6. Finally I actually looked at the PISA 2016 (with some trepidation because I have not worked out how PISA takes its samples and makes its conclusions).

    We have been told in newspapers that our students are flat-lining, shown by a flat graph. But graphs in the Report show a downward trend since 2003. Where is the explanation? But a look at the table of scores shows Oz is surpassed only by some dozen countries all Asian except for one or two non-Asian. Otherwise Oz is heading a list of OECD western countries with similar results.

    An interesting decline is for Finland, toppled by Singapore. It would interesting to see why.

    But I remember a NY scheme which paid by results and A grade schools were penalised for not improving. Is the PISA testing such a scheme?

    But reading silly comments from journalists is no way to know what to think, as in articles quoted above.

    1. Hmm. Well I'll assume both 'Anonymouses' above are the same Anonymous.

      Anyway, of course there was a 'golden age' - it was back when I went trough primary and secondary education from 1949 - 1960 inclusive. We were all outstandingly literate and numerate back then, but of course we were.

      Anyway, just for a random bit of input, included below are a couple of paragraphs I took from 2 'Conversation' posts. For what (if anything) they're worth:

      "So what is Singapore doing right, and do other countries want to emulate it?

      Clearly there are things to learn. Singapore has invested heavily in its education system. Its teachers are the best and brightest, and it has developed highly successful pedagogic approaches to science, maths, engineering and technology (STEM) teaching, such as the “Maths Mastery” approach.

      So in a maths lesson, a goal for a student might be to: “carry out whole number addition”. One objective that would contribute to this goal could be to “add two three digit whole numbers with carrying in the tens”. In 1983, Robert Ashlock and his colleagues went further, breaking down addition into 23 objectives and subtraction into 24 objectives.

      In her speech, Truss said that, “The mastery model of learning places the emphasis on understanding core concepts.” Actually mastery is not often about understanding concepts, but instead is about what Bloom’s Taxonomy called “knowledge-remember” – remembering knowledge, not about understanding and higher levels of cognitive ability."

      Has that made it all crystal clear now ? But anyway, here's a thought: what about the largish number of Asian students now studying in various state education systems in Australia: do they actually raise or lower the overall standard ? And if they raise it, how do they achieve that given they're in the same schools and with the same teachers as the rest of the students.

    2. I did write a reply to both the above, Anony, but it seems to have departed without trace. As best I remember, it was about how of course there was a "Golden Age" of education in Oz - from 1949 to 1960 to be precise. Oh yes, back then we were just so blindingly literate and numerate. Kazakhstan wouldn't have stood a chance against us back then.

      I also mentioned a couple of posts in The Conversation about how we maybe should, or shouldn't, be joining the latest fad and teaching "maths mastery" or some such. It rather sounds like rote learning to me, but then I guess when you're not very bright, teaching by understanding is beyond you. It kinda reminded me of a less imaginative Cuisenaire, personally.

      But the main thing was to consider Asian students (just like them brilliant Singaporeans, but from Asia) who are resident in Australia and being taught in Australian schools. I wondered if they, considered as a single group, actually either raised or lowered the Australian average in those 'Leaning Tower' tests. Because if they raised the average, then how did they manage that while being in the same schools under the same teachers and teachings as all the other students.


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