Thursday, November 25, 2010

News Blurbs for Thanksgiving Day 2010

Moving Up From The Basic 'Tar On The Driveway' Scam
Posted by Robert Ransdell on: 2010-11-25 06:46:30 in category: General [ Print]

A 'shameless' Romanian gipsy who stole at least £113,000 in benefits to fund a life of luxury has been jailed for three years.

Illie Schian, 47, bought sports cars, motorcycles, quad bikes and electrical goods with money he received from British hand-outs.

Using taxpayers’ cash, he even built his family a nine-bedroom mansion in Romania, complete with marbled floors, a spa bath, servants’ quarters and two kitchens filled with modern appliances.

He is also accused of involvement in a people-smuggling ring that sent around 180 children to Britain to beg and steal.

The fraudster amassed a £20,000 nest egg in a Romanian bank account before he was finally caught by police.

Schian, from Enfield, North London, applied for political asylum under an assumed name when he arrived in the UK 11 years ago, claiming he had been persecuted in Romania because he is a gipsy.

News Source: nasacunit

Who Needs Standards?
Posted by Robert Ransdell on: 2010-11-25 06:39:39 in category: General [ Print]

Depending on whom you ask, West Potomac High School's latest change to student grading is either another sign of a coddled generation or a necessary step to help struggling kids.

The dreaded F has been all but banished from the grade books.

The report cards that arrived home late last week showed few failing grades but instead marks of "I" for incomplete, indicating that students still owe their teachers essential work. They will get Fs only if they fail to complete assignments and learn the content in the months to come.

The change in educational philosophy is intended to encourage students to continue working toward mastery of material rather than accepting a failing grade and moving on. Schools throughout the Washington area and the nation have made other moves to improve grading methods, especially as they affect low-performing students, though few have gone so far as West Potomac High, in the Alexandria section of Fairfax County.

"It's a huge paradigm shift," said principal Clifford Hardison, who recalls that when year-end grades were tallied last June at West Potomac, he counted nearly 2,000 Fs, with a large group of teens racking up more than one failed course.

News Source: nasacunit

Schools To Lose Federal Funding If Jews Aren't Happy
Posted by Robert Ransdell on: 2010-11-25 06:30:27 in category: General [ Print]

After a six-year campaign, the U.S. Department of Education announced that Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 will now be interpreted and enforced to protect Jewish students from anti-Semitic harassment, intimidation and discrimination. Title VI requires that federally funded schools ensure that their programs and activities are free from discrimination based on “race, color, or national origin.” If a school violates Title VI, it can lose its federal funding. In a letter dated October 26, 2010, Russlynn Ali, Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights in the U.S. Department of Education, announced that “anti-Semitic harassment can trigger responsibilities under Title VI. While Title VI does not cover discrimination based solely on religion, groups [such as Jews] that face discrimination on the basis of actual or perceived shared ancestry or ethnic characteristics may not be denied protection under Title VI on the ground that they also share a common faith.”

The Education Department’s letter makes clear that disciplining the perpetrators of anti-Semitic bigotry may not be enough to rectify a hostile environment for Jewish students; other remedial steps could include “publicly labeling the incidents as anti-Semitic,” and educating teachers and students about the history and dangers of anti-Semitism and recognizing when anti-Semitism occurs. In addition, the Education Department’s letter clarifies that schools must “take prompt and effective steps reasonably calculated to end the harassment and prevent its recurrence.”

In October 2004, the ZOA filed a Title VI complaint with OCR on behalf of Jewish students at the University of California, Irvine. The complaint alleged that students had been subjected to years of anti-Semitic harassment, intimidation and discrimination that the university knew about but failed to redress. OCR decided that the ZOA’s complaint should be investigated, rendering it the first case of anti-Semitism that OCR ever agreed to investigate under Title VI. But shortly after the investigation began, new leadership came on board at OCR, which resulted in a change in the way that the agency interpreted Title VI. OCR decided that Jews were strictly a religious group and not also an ethnic that would be entitled to the protections of Title VI. As a result, after the case was pending at OCR for approximately three years (despite the fact that cases are typically resolved in six months), the agency dismissed the ZOA’s case against UC Irvine, primarily on the basis that OCR lacked jurisdiction over many of the allegations of the complaint.

News Source: NAN

Remember Roger, Never Challenge Their Martyrdom
Posted by Robert Ransdell on: 2010-11-25 06:19:15 in category: General [ Print]

Fox News President Roger Ailes has apologized to the Anti-Defamation League for using the term “Nazi” to describe NPR officials in an interview with The Daily Beast, and the ADL has accepted his apology, Politico reports. Ailes told The Daily Beast, “They [NPR] are, of course, Nazis. They have a kind of Nazi attitude. They are the left wing of Nazism. These guys don’t want any other point of view.”

But in a letter to ADL National Director Abe Foxman, Ailes wrote, “I was of course ad-libbing and should not have chosen that word. But I was angry at the time because of NPR’s willingness to censor Juan Williams for not being liberal enough.”

Holocaust survivor Foxman replied: “I welcome Roger Ailes’ apology, which is as sincere as it is heartfelt. Nazi comparisons of this nature are clearly inappropriate and offensive. While I wish Roger had never invoked that terminology, I appreciate his efforts to immediately reach out and to retract his words before they did any further harm.”

News Source: nasacunit

He Was Right, The World Will Know
Posted by Robert Ransdell on: 2010-11-25 06:12:05 in category: General [ Print]

A mayor has provoked outrage by allegedly claiming Adolf Hitler had the ‘right idea’ about dealing with Germany’s gipsies.

Mike Eckersley is said to have made the remarks at a council equalities meeting, which was immediately halted.

Fellow councillors called for him to quit and for David Cameron to throw him out of the Tory party.

Mr Eckersley, who is mayor of Prestatyn in North Wales, has offered an apology, claiming he simply referred to the Nazis rather than praised them.

However, Christine Evans, an independent councillor who chaired the meeting, said he had spoken of how Hitler got rid of the gipsies.

‘He definitely used the term Hitler when talking about the traveller issue and the thrust was suggesting that we should move the travellers out the country,’ she said.

An estimated 220,000 gipsies were murdered in the gas chambers or worked to death during the Second World War.

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