Saturday, September 05, 2009

Are there really no black school shooters?

Not according to Van Jones, the Special Advisor for Green Jobs at the White House Council on Environmental Quality, who states that only white kids shoot up suburban schools:

"You've never seen a Columbine done by a black child. Never. They always say, 'We can't believe it happened here. We can't believe it's these suburban white kids.' It's only them. Now, a black kid might shoot another black kid. He's not going to shoot up the whole school."

I guess Van Jones never heard of Nicholas Elliot. But I have. During my research for my book on school shootings, The Scarred Heart: Understanding and Identifying Kids Who Kill, I described Elliot's case. He was a black sixteen year old male who attended a Christian Academy. He was quite shy and taunted and teased by classmates. On December 16, 1988, Nicholas came to school with a semiautomatic pistol and two hundred rounds of ammunition and entered a classroom. He opened fire, killing one teacher and wounding another. Luckily, his gun jammed before he could accomplish a bigger mass shooting. At his trial, the psychiatrist who evaluated Nicholas testified that was a "pressure cooker" who was unable to express his feelings and exploded after being tortured by classmates.

Maybe next time Jones opens his mouth, he should try to get his facts straight. But then, what can we expect from someone who thought 9/11 was an inside job?

Update: Jones quits.

Friday, September 04, 2009

“The recession has been a bonanza for the online education industry...”

I just read an interesting article at CNBC entitled, "Online Schooling Picks Up Students—and Respect:"

Thanks to the recession, Internet schooling is taking on growing importance—and gaining acceptance.

The huge cost of a higher education—plus the need by many laid off workers to learn new skills—has sparked a sharp increase in the number of people taking online courses. And online degrees, especially from well-known institutions, are gaining acceptance among educators and employers.

And apparently, these online classes can be quite effective:

UC Santa Barbara's Conoley also says online courses are effective. She cites a study in which students at the University of Texas, Austin who took a course online posted similar test results as those who took the same course in a classroom.

The internet, is there anything it can't do?

Thursday, September 03, 2009

Don Surber: "Are we American citizens or are we subjects?" I am going to suggest Obama thinks we are the latter.

Labels: ,

"You are your child's moral tutor, not that shady lawyer from Chicago."

So says Tammy Bruce regarding the September 8th speech Obama plans on giving to our nation's school children:

President Barack Obama's plans for a televised back-to-school address to students next week are drawing fire from some conservatives, who say he's just trying to indoctrinate them to his political beliefs.

In the Sept. 8 speech, Obama will challenge students to work hard, set goals for their education and take responsibility for their learning, Education Secretary Arne Duncan said in a letter to principals.

The Education Department is encouraging teachers to create lesson plans around the speech, using materials provided on the department website, that urge students to learn about Obama and other presidents.

"He will also call for a shared responsibility and commitment on the part of students, parents and educators to ensure that every child in every school receives the best education possible so they can compete in the global economy for good jobs and live rewarding and productive lives as American citizens," Duncan said in a press release.

Okay, this is just creepy--Obama is the first president to come in and give a speech directly to school children. This Hugo Chavez wannabe is really working overtime to get the American people riled up. Some conservatives and others are calling for parents to have their kids skip this day at school.

What do you think?

Labels: ,

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Health care for Clunkers

I was at the gym this morning and saw a car dealer on Fox News talking with Megyn Kelly about the Cash for Clunkers program. He had sold 181 cars and been reimbursed for 6 of them thus far. Asked if he would use the program again, he said "yes, but I hope they'll pay next time. There was also too much bureaucracy."

Good luck with that and welcome to how the government takes its own sweet time getting money to providers of services. The auto dealers are just getting a little taste of what health care providers have been dealing with for years. Those of us who are health care providers are used to filling out forms over and over, stalling, lack of reimbursements and often, cuts in reimbursement without warning. I can't tell you how many times I have filled out forms, made phone calls and begged for payment for Medicare reimbursements. It's just not worth it.

Imagine what will happen if the government takes over all of health care. Cash for Clunkers, Health care for Clunkers, call it what you want, actual cash will be hard to come by and take outrageous amounts of time and energy to collect. Cash for Clunkers should serve as a warning sign to providers and patients alike that more government interference into health care will result in more bureaucracy and less time for providers to spend with patients. After all, filling out paperwork and begging for cash can be time consuming.


Self Help book on Borderline Personality Disorder

I am in the middle of reading an excellent new book by Randi Kreger entitled, The Essential Family Guide to Borderline Personality Disorder: New Tools and Techniques to Stop Walking on Eggshells. Kreger is also co-author of the very popular Stop Walking on Eggshells: Taking Your Life Back When Someone You Care About Has Borderline Personality Disorder and The Stop Walking on Eggshells Workbook. These books are a must for those of you dealing with someone with BPD.

The new book for family members of those with BPD has some great strategies for coping with the disorder as well as good descriptions of the dynamics of the relationship between the person with BPD and the non-BPD. This is important as the dance between the person with BPD and the one without can contribute to an increase in symptoms and problems.

Although Kreger points out that many men have BPD (the DSM-IV says 75% women, 25% men--though some experts think the number of men is higher), I believe that men need coping strategies as they are the ones who are often involved with BPD women and do not know where to turn for help. Women have more access to, and are willing to get more help from the mental health profession and they get more help from society in general. There are many reasons for this that we have discussed on this blog.

I am scheduled to have Ms. Kreger on my PJTV show next week to give advice to men who are coping with a significant other who has BPD (she points out that women dealing with a BPD family member can learn much from her work also). Hopefully, she can shed some light on this disorder and how men can cope.

Update: Ms. Kreger lets us know in the comments that if people want to know more about BPD, they can go to her website at There is also a support community if you have a family member with BPD here.

Labels: , ,

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Why I no longer have to worry about finances

Imagine how delighted I was to receive this credit card in the mail today from with my name on it. Order yours today and we can all stop worrying about petty things like liberty, freedom, personal responsibility, and the economy. Thank goodness, all that stuff was getting to be a burden, don't ya think?

Labels: , , ,