Gongol.com Archives: 2011 Weekly Archives
Brian Gongol



Socialism Doesn't Work Chinese artist arrested for "suspected economic crimes"
What would those be? How long can 1.3 billion people (and rising) live under a government that seems so arbitrary about tossing people into prison without due cause?

Iowa Do Iowa City and Cedar Rapids belong in different Congressional districts?
That's what's proposed by a new redistricting map, but it has to go through quite a bit of review before it can be approved. The new proposed map also separates Ames from Des Moines, but casts Des Moines together with Council Bluffs and Ames together with Sioux City. Ames and Des Moines have been apart for quite some time, though, so perhaps there's little thought about whether they belong together.

Science and Technology Teenagers allowed to sleep in do much better in school
A measurable increase in test scores results from letting them go to school later, so why do we insist on early school start times?

Iowa Reviewing a liberal-arts core curriculum
The University of Northern Iowa is reviewing the liberal-arts curriculum for students getting degrees there, and one of the major debates is over how to address science education. There's no escaping the fact that science education is in a dismal state in America today -- witness the vast number of snake-oil offerings in commercials and advertisements today, not to mention the pathetic state of understanding of issues like how nuclear fallout from Japan is (or more likely, is not) going to affect anyone living in America. But there are other areas where people generally seem to have little or no education about what they need to know: Personal finance, for instance, and media literacy. And for people living in the Midwest, especially, what about education on agricultural matters? And if anyone thought we could do without a general education on economics, they've apparently been asleep for the last five years.

Science and Technology "A library of Alexandria in which all humanity held a card"
Now that would be a dream condition for Wikipedia. But it doesn't always attract the people most qualified to write for it. It's also unfortunate that a lot of the world's best cutting-edge knowledge is hidden inside overpriced academic journals that nobody reads. One would think we'd have this problem solved by 2011, but we definitely don't.

Broadcasting Glenn Beck's bright flame flickers out at Fox News
His meteoric rise started with his move to the network in January 2009 -- after some time at CNN. Now, he's expected to be out by the end of the year. That's a fast burn for such a big star, but his rants have grown really difficult to stomach.



Business and Finance Justice Department approves deal for Google to buy ITA
It's not a small purchase -- $700 million. And it's for a company that provides tracking of airfares, so the government has ordered them to keep supplying data to other sites, like Orbitz and Kayak. Google has to make a whole lot of right decisions to have any hope of being as successful in its second decade as it was in its first.

The American Way Lemonade stand day is coming
People in a number of American cities are going to try a small-scale program to encourage kids to think about entrepreneurship

Socialism Doesn't Work Who should have to pay for a new Vikings football stadium?
It's too bad that the allure of professional sports convinces governments and voters to spend tons of money to buy the allegiances of sports-team owners

Health "It's the only brain he has"
A mother shows more intelligence about her son's post-concussion care than any coaches seemed to want to. High school sports just aren't that important.

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