About Me

In writing the "About Me" portion of this blog I thought about the purpose of the blog - namely, preventing the growth of Socialism & stopping the Death Of Democracy in the American Republic & returning her to the "liberty to abundance" stage of our history. One word descriptions of people's philosophies or purposes are quite often inadequate. I feel that I am "liberal" meaning that I am broad minded, independent, generous, hospitable, & magnanimous. Under these terms "liberal" is a perfectly good word that has been corrupted over the years to mean the person is a left-winger or as Mark Levin more accurately wrote in his book "Liberty & Tyranny" a "statist" - someone looking for government or state control of society. I am certainly not that & have dedicated the blog to fighting this. I believe that I find what I am when I consider whether or not I am a "conservative" & specifically when I ask what is it that I am trying to conserve? It is the libertarian principles that America was founded upon & originally followed. That is the Return To Excellence that this blog is named for & is all about.

Tuesday, May 30, 2023

Walk, You Won't Have To Run

"Teachers unions are more dangerous to America than al Qaeda." - Neal Boortz

The above graphics (click on them to enlarge) released earlier this month by the National Assessment of Education Progress (NAEP), known as the Nation's Report Card, are part of the latest indication that America's youth are being poorly educated & this is a detriment to our country. 

In 2022 only 13% of eighth graders in government schools were proficient in history - "That's the lowest proportion of students reaching that level out of any subject assessed by NAEP" says Daniel J. McGrath, National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) Acting Associate Commissioner.  It is 20% proficient or above in civics.

Last Fall NAEP's report showed national test scores had the largest math declines ever recorded for fourth & eighth graders & reading levels had dropped to the lowest levels since 1992 - only 33% of fourth graders nationwide scored proficient or higher in reading tests in 2022.

The last RTE post pointed out that America is experiencing shortages of doctors, pharmacists, accountants, & policemen & you don't have to look further than the above academic results to see why.  It is not far-fetched to see a connection between the above education declines, that have been reported for years, & our shortages of key professionals. 

In addition, those who make it to graduate school, many of whom would be the next professionals in one of the above four fields have found "funemployment" & "quiet quitting" fits into their current lifestyle quite well.  

"Funemployment" - the concept of GenZers & some younger Millennials that not having the worries of a job, or even the prospects of one, could be pleasant, delightful, & even desirable - an irresponsible level above wanting a good work-life balance.  Source: Suzy Welch.  

"Quiet quitting" is the concept that young professionals should take their work-life balance to the point that they do no more than the bare minimum to do their job & quietly quit work, for the day, when they think they have met this standard.  Mrs. Welch points out this is another way of saying " I want to work 9-to-5 in an 8-to-8 industry."  Imagine if doctors or policemen were quiet quitters.

Of course these concepts rely heavily on the funemployed & quiet quitters not spending down their parents' wealth too fast, starting with their student loans being forgiven by Biden.  If these people do spend down their parents' entire wealth they will have wiped out the wealth of two generations (their own that never materialized & their parents) making the question - can the next generation rebuild the wealth that was wasted on these feckless people?

But it's even worse - the behavior described above carries over to blue collar work as well.  The gas engineer who recently relocated my natural gas meter outdoors told me that the local utility has a hard time getting young people who want to work - he finds them not interested in the work, lazy, looking for time off, but wanting to receive good pay.  He had an older helper that day @ my house who provided a noticeable difference to contrast this opinion to - his apprentice helper had been an experienced mechanic who was changing careers to work for the local utility.  The apprentice was all the things that the gas engineer said the young workers are not - helpful, energetic, wanting to learn, & asking questions.

Now like many of you, I have seen this coming for years, starting for me with two successful fathers I know who expected nothing from their sons & in one case that is exactly what he got after paying for a useless college education.  Over the years I had noticed that each of the two sons either took no responsibility for work around the house or didn't have a summer job - a tip off of bad things to come.

But it's not just personal achievement that should worry us.  Far too many people are falling for the woke mentality, without even realizing it, as they are being taught to hate America while simultaneously taking for granted the freedoms that America inherently offers.  

Even so the topic of reparations in California, piled on top of all the other abuses (e.g., penalty free shoplifting of $950 of merchandise, sky high gasoline taxes & utility rates, & large homeless encampments) in the once Golden State, may be the straw that breaks the camel's back.  

California was admitted to the union as a free state meaning there were no slaves & no slave holders.  Most people trace their ancestry to after the Civil War so asking people to pay large reparations pushes people's backs to the wall & they may finally be ready to "just say no" to more Critical Race Theory (CRT).

Also in California, the new San Francisco DA (replacement for recalled DA Chesa Boudin - an accomplishment in & of itself) not bringing charges earlier this month against the Walgreens security guard in the shooting death of Banko Brown during a shoplifting attempt is another indication of a possibly changing tide.  One thought was that the new DA could not find a grand jury in San Francisco that would indict the security guard.  Who would have thought this possible just a few months ago?

Other tide turning events: Florida Governor Ron DeSantis (backed by both chambers of the Florida Legislature) 1) requires businesses with more than 25 employees to use the online E-Verify system to check employment to help control illegal immigration, 2) will not recognize out of state driver's licenses issued to illegal immigrants, 3) requires State & local investment decisions to focus on maximizing returns instead of making politically correct investment statements with citizens' pension funds regarding Environmental, Social, & Governance (ESG) considerations, & 4) will no longer require Floridians to have a permit to carry concealed weapons.

Now the NAACP, the League of United Latin American Citizens, & the homosexual rights advocacy group Equality Florida have issued travel advisories to prospective tourists that claim Florida has state laws that are hostile to LGBT & people of color.  The groups claim DeSantis has attempted to erase Black History month & restrict diversity, equity, & inclusion (DEI) programs in Florida schools.  This is a positive step in righting our ship  because people will now have a choice to make concerning what is right or wrong instead of just hearing one side, but you can count on the hostile anti-American media to present any arguments in a skewed & misleading way so people will have to beware & dig to learn the truth for themselves.

And in Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin has improved the former Office of Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion (DEI) by appointing Martin Brown to the position of Chief Diversity Officer & renaming the institution the Office of Diversity, Opportunity, & Inclusion & making Brown its Director.  Brown is a graduate of both Howard University & the Virginia Executive Institute @ VCU & has extensive experience working in the private sector & state government.  

These moves enhance Virginia's chances of further awakening citizens of the Old Dominion to the destructiveness of CRT where small sounding differences between words like equity & equality have led to nothing but trouble.  Brown has already spoken @ the Virginia Military Institute (VMI) in this regard saying things like "DEI is dead," which resulted in the Virginia NAACP calling for Brown's resignation.  I take this as another positive sign that sanity is gaining some voice because Youngkin has not wavered in his support for Brown who must be doing something right to fire up such opposition.

It is important to remember that in many ways Virginia is ground zero in discovering the education problem of parents being excluded from involvement in what their children were being taught in Virginia government schools.  The Loudoun county parents-teachers board meetings that caught national attention led to Youngkin being elected governor in 2021.

And in Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds just signed a bill banning gender identity & sexual orientation issues from being raised to children in K through 6th grade & school administrators are now required to notify parents if students ask to change their pronouns or names.

In North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum signed legislation that prohibits government schools from requiring teachers & employees to refer to transgender people by the pronouns they use.

It is CRT & the gender identity & sexual orientation issues that take time away from what young students should be learning that is hurting America in more ways than one.  We have learned that we can't just turn kids over to schools with no further parental involvement - we have to regularly look @ students' textbooks & homework assignments to make sure we know what is happening.

As regular readers of this blog know, I present quizzes (similar in difficulty to NAEP sample questions) from time to time throughout the year.  Many subscribers send these quizzes to friends or present them @ dinner parties.  My hope has always been that parents & grandparents will send them to their children & grandchildren like my dear late friend Evelyn did for years.  

For instance if a ninth grader @ this point in the school year can't figure out the Train Derailment Quiz that was posted on March 7 he or she is not doing math @ proficiency level & parents should know this so they can do something about it.

In his online Hillsdale College economics course entitled Supply-Side Economics & American Prosperity, Dr. Arthur Laffer confides his own personal answer regarding what he thinks the prospects are for our country.  Dr. Laffer says that when he was young he was very optimistic & the world was much worse than it is today.  From 1946 to the present the United States has improved enormously.  But he admits that along the way the divisiveness, like today's, that he has seen before, has always depressed him & he is living in that same sort of depression today of the partisanship that makes him not optimistic; but he says he has always been wrong when he was not optimistic.

In that same spirit of Art Laffer I have presented above some optimistic signs in this post that people could be waking up to know we have it within our power to change the destructive path we are on. 

And there are even more signs all around us like 1) Anheuser-Busch, losing beer sales more & more by the day for the past two months, after offending their own clientele with their wokeness when they hired transgender Tik Tok influencer Dylan Mulvaney, to promote Bud Light in a pair of videos that received negative feedback on social media including Kid Rock posting a video of him shooting cases of the beer - all this heading into the summer beer drinking season, 2) Target holding true, to date, in not jamming sales of Gay Pride Month clothing items down 99% of their customers throats in favor of the 1% of households that account for Americans in same sex marriages, & even 3) the Los Angeles Dodgers waffling regarding whether or not to honor the Sisters of the Perpetual Indulgence @ the ball park during the annual Pride Night  baseball game - it's currently still on.

I also had the Republican House holding true on the spending reduction debt ceiling issue on the above list but removed it when McCarthy capitulated as Republicans have done every time before.  If the agreement in principle that Biden & McCarthy made late Saturday night does not have the votes to pass into law there is a better than even chance that McCarthy will fold on even the few meatless bones Biden threw him in order to get the Democrat votes needed to avoid the catastrophe Yellen has warned her Treasury will ensure occurs.

We may lose most or even all of these examples, like combining spending reduction with raising the debt ceiling, but we are @ least looking like we know something is going on that requires attention.  Just a short time ago there was no resistance.  Make sure you are doing everything you can to actively pull in the right direction because the forces against us are very formidable.

In the meantime I have two of my own first hand experiences that make me happy.

First I was just notified that my friend Darien was one of four students in the Honors College @ Cleveland State that graduated with a mechanical engineering degree on a full scholarship & he starts work on his new job today.  The sky's the limit for this young man.

Second, my friend Tommy is finishing his junior year majoring in civil engineering @ Rutgers.  Two years ago I asked Tommy to show me his curriculum & he gave me the number for some people @ his college who I spoke to so I have gauged the quality of his education which is excellent.  He has helped with work around his parents house for years & this summer will be his second working as a summer student for an engineering firm in his area.  He has touched all the bases I mentioned above in this post.

Next year Tommy will be 22 years old & will have an engineering degree from Rutgers - a ticket to anywhere he wants to go in the business world.

Tommy, like Darien, won't have to run, he will walk past any pretended competition.


  1. Hi Doug: As usual, great Article. We are living in a crazy world. What next?

  2. Your article is hitting the nail that holds the horse shoe on, every time parts of the article are mentioned
    your stepped on, no rebuttals, no come back discussion, why is that nail pushed in the dirt and covered up?

    Problems, afraid to lose their job, afraid to offend, the list goes on. I saw all this when BO was president. BO said "we will transform the United States of America" not one no one asked, to what? I see one thing coming - the LGB best untie from the other alphabet letters, they just might go down with the ship. More people are becoming aware of the problem. Schools are worried they won't get extra funds, that has to be fixed, cut the funds if you choose to teach that junk.