Letters to the editor, Sunday, Jan. 18, 2015

It all squares

1, 4, 9, 16 … as in sweet 16. We retire around the age of 64. In 2007, oil peaked at $144 a barrel (12 squared, top of the clock) and bottomed at $36 a year later (6 squared, bottom of the cycle).

The even year squares 40 = 1600, odd years 41 = 1681, and half squares 1640.5, mark historic highs and lows; two highs followed by two lows; see highs 1640.5 (tulip bubble) and 1681 (carrying trade business in London grew 64 pecent, 8 square). Lows followed 1722.5 (see Dutch East India Company) and that cycle low troughed 1764. The ensuing highs of 1806.5 and 1849 (49ers and boom time for miners) were followed by the lows of 1892.5 (Michigan unemployment more than 40 percent and in New York they burned their furniture to stay warm and ate their shoes and belts in the cruel winter of 1894) and 1936 which preceded WWII as 1764 preceded The Revolutionary War. The odd squares seem to mark boom times, with the next square 45 X 45 = 2025. The even squares seem to mark secondary lows preceding global war. The next? 2116, speculatively following an initial deflationary drop in 2070.

One might hypothesize that there is a wave of Creative Destruction marked by squares and half squares that has been repeating for a long time, and getting longer, like waves moving out in a pool from some ancient bang.

Daniel J. Bowler

Carson City

Common Core

Responses to Tuesday night’s forum:

I attended the Common Core Forum Tuesday evening. In response to Deputy Supt. Canavero’s claim that teachers were silenced, I have never been to a debate where one side gets to call someone from the audience to respond to a question, rather than those on the dais. The moderator did allow Mr. Grossman (from the audience) to respond to a question, which was highly irregular. The second audience member was not allowed.

I resent the fact that the state is forcing students (and in essence, parents) to take the test this spring (First Amendment — Freedom of Association) and forcing them to provide personal information (possibly a violation of the Fourth Amendment).

As to the claim that public input was allowed in the adoption process, Common Core was stealthily approved. I would guess that there were at least two — one against/pro attendees (probably more). If the public (especially parents/grandparents) had known what we know now as the adoption process was taking place, I can almost guarantee that there would have been a much greater outcry, and there may not have been a legislative adoption.

I would hope that the Legislature will severely amend or even drop Common Core in the current session. As Dr. Stotsksy stated, why should we accept standards that move us from 49th to 45th (or even 25th?) instead of using Massachusetts standards (first)?

David W. Carter

Recent candidate for Carson City School Board

One wonders if P. K. O’Neill was aware of the biased set-up in the “debates” on the Common Core standards that he allegedly sponsored. The organizing group, so-called “Citizens for Sound Academic Standards” is led by Ann Bednarski, a failed candidate for the Board of Education and perpetual critic of organized education.

The bias of the “forums,”, featuring out-of-state critics of the Common Core standards, was evidenced by the refusal to let our teachers speak on the issues. Apparently, the “Citizens for Sound Academic Standards” are among the growing mobs that blame all perceived failures in our educational systems on the teachers, the front-line troops trying to educate our children despite inadequate resources and political grandstanding. The so-called ‘debate’ about attempting to nationally raise the educational bar is just one more example as to why the United States continues to fall behind all other industrial counties in its obligation to educate our children for the challenges of the 21st century.

In the future, one hopes that Assemblyman O’Neill will lend his support for public debates on critical issues to more objective organizations.

Otherwise, such events are not “debates”, but rather political infomercials.

Jon Nowlin

Carson City

I read with interest your article about the symposium on Common Core in Nevada held in Carson City — particularly the last few paragraphs, in which it appears that teachers from our schools who were at the symposium were not allowed to speak on “procedural grounds” whereas retired professors from other states were and quoted as well.

My reaction to that is the critical information these esteemed professors had to share about how Common Core relates to Nevada must not be very credible if remarks from our own teachers who actually work with these Common Core standards in our schools are effectively censored.

David Fulton

Carson City


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