Even though Barack Obama’s Twitter Town Hall consisted largely of carefully selected softball question tweets that didn’t stop users of the microblogging service from generating 169,395 tweets.

The breakdown according t TVNewser:

  • Jobs – 18,957
  • Budget – 15,000
  • Taxes – 14,777
  • Education – 8,833

Despite the preferential treatment and controlled questions Obama still managed to muff the answers according to the Associated Press who did  a quick fact check on the president’s answers.

My recommendation is that maybe next time e could have the answers appear to him in a tweet format via his teleprompter.

They say a picture is worth a 1,000 words but in the case of rioting students in Great Britain CNN Executive Producer  Nadia Bilchik felt compelled to go behind the pictures to explain why the students were tearing up government property.

Bilchik explained that until the late 1990’s students in Great Britain didn’t pay any university tuition and over time it gradually rose to the equivalent of $4500.  With the British government facing what even Bilchik admits is an enormous deficit they are left with very little choice but to raise the fees in order to close the budget gap.

But for Bilchik that’s really not a god enough reason since people who are now in their 30’s probably never paid any tuition and leaves viewers with the impression that the increase in fees despite the deficit is unfair since so many British citizens until recently had received a free university education.

Bilchik did think it was a shame that the student protest turned violent but closed the segment by saying that”but let’s take a look at the bigger picture of what they are protesting” and that “it gets lost in the whole big scenario.”

I think the public understands that the students are upset with tuition increases but that doesn’t give them the right to riot and destroy property and CNN has no business in turning it into a justifiable act just because previous generations received a free education.

That’s the problem with the cradle to grave society that exists in much of Europe. People expect that the government will take care of them forever and ask little in return so they can work a little and vacation a lot.  Well nothing in life is truly free and Great Britain is now paying the piper for decades of government excesses and it’s going to be very painful indeed.

 A new high school opening in Loudon County, Va.  next year and  named after the Tuscarora Indian tribe has left the principal to negotiate a political minefield as she chooses the school’s mascot.

Once upon a time before the politically correct thought police took over the landscape choosing a mascot was a fun and easy exercise.

But now the principal faces the challenge of finding a name that will evoke school spirit and pride while at the same time avoiding offending any and all ethnic groups and minorities.

The principal  Pamela Paul-Jacobs told the Washington Post last week that in choosing a mascot that  she wanted to pay respect to the Tuscaroras’ heritage and didn’t want to create controversy.

That controversy meant that names like Squaw, Warriors and Indians were out before anyone had a chance to vote.

After the school board in Montgomery County, Md where I live outlawed Indian names as mascots in 2001 Poolesville High School was forced to drop their beloved mascot after 50 years to become the Falcons.  My old high school which was also known as the Indians for the first 30 years of its existence is now the Warriors after re-opening after being closed for nearly 20 years.  I’m sorry but as happy as I am that the school has been given new life, I will always be an Indian.

How did we get here?  Well one reason is that activists on the issue received the backing of the American Psychological Association and the American Sociological Society who have jumped on the anti-Indian mascot bandwagon by claiming there is a  growing body of research showing that the mascots create a hostile learning environment for Native American students and hurt their self-esteem.

This is another case where the feelings of the majority are being ruled by the supposed feelings of the minority.

For those at schools that have resisted the call to drop their Indian named mascots they see the names as evoking pride and honor. 

I know that when I was going to high school that it never occurred to me that the name Indian was demeaning to anyone and none of my Native American friends ever complained about the mascot.   Our mascot evoked  not only a sense of pride but one of what I’ll call toughness.  In sports you want an edge and as a athlete I would have more fear of an Indian or Warrior than a Falcon or Clown.

Paul-Jacobs thought she found a winner in the name Tribe as it conveyed a sense of family and people coming together for a greater cause, the collective group.

But fearing the PC police she decided to consult with Teresa Morris, founder of the Coastal Carolina Indian Center and a descendant of Tuscarora Indians.

Morris told Paul-Jacobs that she was honored that the school community chose the name Tuscarora but felt that was as far as it should go fearing people showing up to a game wearing war paint and making Indian chants which would be disrespectful.

Rather than the Tribe Morris suggested the state bird which is the cardinal.

Won’t that offend bird lovers who might worry that the mascot will be a meaner looking bird?

In the end Paul-Jacobs decided to drop Tribe from the list and instead will choose from Timber Wolves, Huskies and Tigers.

Political correctness run amok.  You betcha!

The Chancellor of D.C. Schools Michelle Rhee, a Korean-American running a predominantly black school system has been shaking up the establishment since  her arrival by firing poor performing principals and closing underpeforming or underenrolled schools.   Now she faces her biggest test with her pay proposal for the teachers.

Under Rhee’s plan teachers would be eligible for salary increases of up to 40% plus bonuses for student performance.  This could conceivably lift salaries to as much as $130,000 per year, a figure normally only seen by administrators in the system.  But this isn’t a free lunch.  In return for the opportunity to earn more money, the teachers would agree to give up their tenure for one year exposing them to the possibility of being fired by the hard charging Rhee.

So the teachers are facing a huge dilemma.  Do they risk their lifetime job security for the chance to increase their income?  The teacher’s union as one might expect is firmly against this proposal because it not only attacks the outdated notion that teachers should in essence have a job for life, but that teacher performance is actually important.

If the teachers aren’t willing to be judged on their performance like most workers are in their jobs then they shouldn’t be teaching.

One would normally think that such ideas or actions might be the brainchild of a conservative reformer but in this case there is nothing further from the truth.  Rhee is a Democrat who has even been praised by Obama during the campaign for her efforts and is now fighting the very same entrenched union bureaucracy that has been a large support base for the Democratic party.

Whether or not Rhee will be successful with her pay proposal remains to be seen.  But in any event she has proven herself to be an educator who actually cares about the children in a broken system and is wlling to go against conventional norms in an effort to provide the children in D.C. with a decent education.