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Showing posts from September, 2009

Why Johhny Is A Bloody Moron, Part I

Because of my almost decade-long tenure as a NYC Public School Teacher, and my position as a union leader, people often ask me, “Why are the graduations rates in NYC so low?” and, “How come this generation of students seems so much dumber than previous generations?” and, “Is there one underlying reason behind the abysmal failures of the Department of Education?”The truth of the matter is that there are many factors behind the 54% graduation rates, 5th Grade reading levels of high school students, and every other indicator that there are close to 1 million students in New York City that won’t be able to spell “unemployed” correctly on their future welfare applications.Over the course of the next few weeks, I’ll try to shed some light on this conundrum: the NYC DOE has a budget of $17 billion dollars, yet produces students who are so ill-equipped that in the coming years, they will not be able to independently function either economically or socially. By way of explaining the primary re…

Dan Brown's The Lost Symbol - An Amazon Review

Even though I haven't been updating this blog in, oh, two years, I figured I'd sign in and add this review I did for Dan Brown's latest "epic" novel, The Lost Symbol. I've actually read every book by Mr. Brown, simply because I, as a writer, wanted to get a glimpse inside the mind of a man who managed to sell 80 million copies of a book which, quite frankly, wasn't very good. I'm talking about The Da Vinci Code, which, despite being the furthest thing from "literature," was somewhat entertaining. So I downloaded the rest of his catalog and read them over the course of a few days. When I finished, I raised my hands in absolute puzzlement, and exclaimed, "Eh?" Quite simply, Brown is probably the richest, least talented author working today for reasons I cannot fathom. He, much like writer Dean Koontz, director Michael Bay, and rock band Nickelback, has simply released the exact same work over and over again, changing only the t…