Smartphone dependency fuels other addictions

“…Young people are particularly at risk, and not just those who have addictions, says Cole Rucker, co-founder and CEO of Paradigm Malibu , an adolescent mental health and drug abuse treatment center. “Years ago, the most difficult part for them here was that they couldn’t smoke cigarettes and now the biggest challenge is they can’t have their cellphones,” he says. Teenagers suffering from depression or anxiety often use smartphones as a coping skill rather than learning to sit with their emotions and developing relationships, Rucker says. “Very often, cellphone use is just like drug use, another negative coping style, and a way to avoid thoughts and feelings,” he adds.

Although smartphones can prevent people from dealing with anxiety, they may also compound it. Those who are heavy smartphone users can’t go 10 minutes without their phone before suffering from anxiety, according to one recent study co-authored by Larry Rosen, professor of psychology at California State University and author of “iDisorder: Understanding Our Obsession with Technology and Overcoming Its Hold on Us.” The study is due to be published in the August 2014 edition of the journal “ Computers in Human Behavior .” “Most people can’t last an hour without getting highly anxious if their smartphone is taken away,” says Rosen

His researchers split a group of 163 college students into light, moderate and heavy smartphone users. Half the students sat in silence without their phones and half with them turned off and out of sight. Regardless of where their phone was, the light users showed no increase in anxiety for the entire 75 minutes, the moderate users showed a slight increase between 10 and 20 minutes, but the heavy users showed more anxiety than the light users at the 10-minute mark, and their anxiety continued to rise until the experiment ended. “Most young people, who are among the heaviest users of their smartphones, can’t last an hour without getting highly anxious if their smartphone is taken away,” he says…”

Source: Market Watch

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A shortage of scientists and techies? Think again

“A common refrain among corporate and political leaders is that the U.S. needs more engineers, scientists and other workers with the kind of specialized expertise needed to boost economic growth. And that assessment plays a part in a range of public policy debates, from how to change the nation’s immigration laws to how to energize job-creation.

But new federal data suggest that idea is largely a myth, and it raises questions for students who are planning their careers. Roughly three-quarters of people who have a bachelor’s degree in science, technology, engineering and math — or so-called STEM fields — aren’t working in those professions, the U.S. Census Bureau said Thursday.

Citing statistics from its most recent American Community Survey, the bureau found that only about half of engineering, computer, math and statistics majors in the U.S. had jobs in their chosen field. Science grads fared even worse: Just 26 percent of physical science majors and 15 percent of those with a diploma in biology, environmental studies or agriculture were in a STEM-related occupation.

It’s worth noting that unemployment among people with STEM degrees is considerably lower than for the general population of workers. As of 2012 (the latest year with available data), only 3.6 percent of college graduates between the ages of 25 and 64 were without a job, according to the Census Bureau, compared with 6.1 percent for the broader U.S. workforce…”

Source: CBS News

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Khan Academy’s Challenge to State-Certified Educators

“I have written a lot about Salman Khan and the Khan Academy. I will continue to do so.

Today, I want to talk about what he has done to modern theories of education. For over a century, there has been a mass illusion that has been fostered by beneficiaries of tax money. This money has gone to teachers and educators. This illusion is as follows: state certification is necessary to be a good teacher.

This illusion has been basic to the creation of the teachers’ union. It is this commitment to what is laughingly known as professionalism that has been the basis of legal barriers to entry. Progressive educators fostered this illusion early in the 20th century. They created a theory of education out of whole cloth, except this whole cloth was tattered cloth. There was never any scientific or any other kind of evidence that indicated that going through a teacher-training program designed by men and women on college faculties would in any way improve the education of children.

This is a classic case of people who had little or no personal experience in teaching school children, who sat down and designed a series of theories about what it takes to teach children. The theories kept changing. There were always rival theories. But they all had this in common: most of the people teaching these theories in university classrooms had never had personal experience or success in teaching school children.

This is the classic example of how universities work. People who teach in MBA programs have never owned businesses. People who teach psychology have never worked as full-time psychologists. Professors get themselves licensed by their own group, few of whom have had any experience in the free market, where profit and loss determine who survives and who fails. Then, having created a state-mandated barrier to entry, they earn above-market wages paid by taxpayers. This starts at the university level, and then it moves down to the very lowest levels of the educational system.

It is all a farce. It is summarized by the slogan we have all heard: “He who can, does. He who can’t, teaches. He who can’t teach, teaches teachers.”

Without any warning, Salman Khan in 2006 began posting his mathematics screencast videos that he produced for his nieces and nephews. People began to come to his website to see the videos. He kept producing more videos. He offered them free of charge.

By now, you know the story. Today, 10 million students are using his videos. They are using them in school systems and also in homeschooling environments all over the world. The students must speak English. That is the main barrier to entry, other than Internet access. Internet access is going to get cheaper. Learning English as a second language is going to get cheaper. And, before too long, there will be automatic translation programs that can be applied to videos. Khan will someday be teaching 100 million students.

The faculty at Oakland Unity High School began using his videos and exercises. The performance of the students dramatically rose. It is a charter school, so I don’t think it is representative of the standard inner-city high school. But the point is this: a charter school drastically improved the performance of the students, which will make the charter school a pot full of money. The charter school is going to be able to defend itself against the critics inside the inner-city schools, who hate the idea of charter schools being able to siphon off the best students. The hostility of the teachers’ union against charter schools is legendary.

Khan has proven that 100+ years of educational theory is wrong. With no training whatsoever in a formal program of education, he became, almost overnight, the most important teacher in the history of the world. The teachers’ union can scream bloody murder, but it won’t do any good. His program is clearly better than anything that the typical tax-funded public school has to offer. Other charter schools will pick up Khan’s program. Why not? It’s free. They get all of this educational support material, and it does not cost them a dime. All the school has to do is buy used computers, add Wi-Fi, and let the students loose on Khan Academy’s site.

His site is living testimony to the fact that 100+ years of rival educational theories, all insisting that you have to have professional training to be a good teacher, were fake from the start. The most important teacher in the history of education had no training in this regard. His program is better than anything that has been produced by people who have gone through the screening process of dumbed-down education — a system that is taught in the colleges and universities of the world. It is simply a way of screening out candidates for teaching jobs. It is a way for moderately intelligent people, who have gone through certification, to keep out rivals who are really good teachers, and who would be willing to work for less money. The whole system of automatic payments based on seniority and the number of semester hours earned in night school programs and summer vacation programs is about to come to an end. The teachers’ union is on the defensive, and it will never again get on the offense. Three words give the lie to the whole illusion: “What about Khan?”

The teachers’ union is by far the most powerful single union in the United States. It is the most powerful politically. It is the most powerful economically. It is based on an illusion. That illusion is being statistically undermined every day by the Khan Academy. The foundation of the entire public school system all over the world is being undermined free of charge every day. A man with no training as a teacher is clearly the best teacher in the world. This is demonstrated by the number of students he has.

Any high school mathematics teacher in the United States could now set up a rival program. There are probably 100,000 of them. If these teachers are any good, or if 10% of them are top-flight, then any one of them could do it. Nobody has done it. They are lazy to the very core of their being. They are not confident about their own abilities. They refuse to sit down with $200 worth of equipment and post videos free of charge on YouTube. They have surrendered the entire field to one man, and this man is not a trained educator. It is too late ever to catch up with him. He has the financial support of Bill Gates, and he has the trust of Bill Gates. Nobody is going to displace him in this generation.

This means that the public schools of the world can either ignore this revolution, or else they can integrate it into their programs. If they ignore it, they are basically turning over education to the charter schools. The charter schools are going to use it. It’s a free resource which improves student performance and cuts expenses.

Because one man has single-handedly proven that the entire theory of progressive education is wrong, and that you don’t need to have specialized training in order to be a great teacher, other institutions can now get involved. Institutions that are not certified by the educational establishment will be able to provide top-flight educational services. Churches will be able to do this. Charitable groups will be able to do this. I hate to think about it, but inner-city gangs will be able to do this. Anyone who wants to gain a following in the community can do so by offering top-flight educational services free of charge, simply by providing low-cost computers to students, and a minimal place to house them. The state will still regulate square footage, and the teachers’ union will still try to convince people that these alternative routes to education are substandard, but Khan Academy’s success at Oakland Unity High School is proof that an uncertified teacher and his educational program are better than what the inner-city schools, or regular public schools, are capable of providing. That is the affront of the Khan Academy.

This message is going to spread. It’s going to spread to universities. It already has begun. The entire structure of education, based on false theories of what constitutes top-flight education — state certification — is being undermined by one man and a support staff of statisticians, whose salaries are paid by Bill Gates and other donors.

The World Wide Web is undermining newspapers. They are dying. It is killing network television, which is also dying. The last bastion has been education, and while it is not dying, its executioner is deploying a digital guillotine every day, 24 hours a day, free of charge. He has proven, statistically and technically, that the number-one theory of modern education is wrong, namely, that you need training in a state-certified educational institution in order to be an effective teacher.

I don’t know what Khan’s politics are, and I don’t care. I don’t care what his educational theory is, either. I care about this: he was never formally certified as a teacher. This represents a threat to the public school system like no other in history.”

Source: Gary North

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Canada’s Foreign Policy is Just as Bad as America’s

Guest post to the Dollar Vigilante.

“As an American, I always had the feeling our northern neighbor was nice. Too nice. I assumed Canada simply played the good cop to Uncle Sam’s bad cop. Brushing up on Canadian political history to test this hypothesis, I found Canada lauded as seminal in international peacekeeping, its greatest achievements being multilateralism, globalism, and the upkeep of international institutions. After all, it was Roméo Dallaire’s actions under the auspices of the United Nations who single-handedly saved upwards of 30,000 Third World lives. I certainly don’t wish to detract from Dallaire’s work, because blessed are the peacekeepers.

What I did find interesting were quotes from Canadian statesmen. Allan Gottlieb recently lectured on how “Canadian international strategy is largely driven by its US relationship,” with the “US being the principal actor”.  September 11, 2001 doubled the output of Canada’s military-industrial-complex from $12 billion to $24 billion annually and spurred the increase of its military bases abroad.

Paul Heinbecker stated the obvious: “You have influence in the world if you have influence in Washington, you have influence in Washington if you have influence in the world”.

I recently spoke to Canadian activist and author Yves Engler who closely follows the machinations of North America’s good son. In 2003, the Ottawa Initiative on Haiti was held where Canada, France and the US met over some poutine while deliberating how they wanted their Haitian steak grilled, medium-rare or well-done. They overthrew President Aristide under the pretext of the Responsibility to Protect (R2P) doctrine, which I prefer to call the Responsibility to Pillage. They followed up their Haitian performance via encores in Libya and Syria with Barack O’Bomber now extending his love to Ukraine and Venezuela. To those questioning his Nobel Peace Prize, rest assured, it is well deserved: the prize was named after the inventor of dynamite. Accordingly, President Barack is lobbing dynamite all over the place. From “f*ck the UN” (Iraq) to “f*ck the EU,” (Ukraine), it’s like an ‘80s hairband world tour reunion that just doesn’t know when to quit.

Yves details in his Black Book on Canadian Foreign Policy how Canada has held hands with Uncle Sam on his journey across the globe, bringing freedom, democracy and good ole’ Miley Cyrus-inspired American culture to formerly civilized nations.

Regarding our sunny southern tequila drinking, mariachi singing neighbor, as of a century ago Canadian business owned 75% of Mexican rail and as of a few years ago 84% of mining. Canada worked together with American banking in flooding their southern neighbor with loans and debt, a la the John Perkins and IMF production as detailed in the book Confessions of an Economic Hitman.

As former Canadian Prime Minister Jean Chrétien once told Bill Clinton: “Keeping some distance will be good for both of us…if we look independent enough, we can do things for you that even the CIA cannot do.”

Canada and the US have over 330 military agreements and are pretty well integrated, from shared responsibilities under US Northern Command to 2010’s Beyond the Border security agreement. Yves says the Canadian military has never been designed to be independent, but to serve “the Empire,” be it Pax Britannica or Pax Americana.

Don’t fall for the old good cop, bad cop ploy. Slapping a Canadian patch on your globe-trotting backpack might serve you well on occasion, but I wonder how long the nice guy image will last.”

Categories: Dollar Vigilante | 1 Comment

30 per cent of university graduates to be out of work after finishing degree

“Up to 65,000 university students – 30 per cent of graduates – will be jobless four months after finishing their studies, and those finding employment will be earning less, the federal government has forecast.

The predicted major downturn in graduate employment will occur at the same time student debts are expected to soar with the deregulation of university fees and an increased interest rate applied to student loans…

…Graduate salaries are also expected to fall.

Starting salaries for higher education graduates, as a proportion of average male weekly earnings, are forecast to fall from 78 per cent this year to 74 per cent in 2016-17.

A spokesman for the Education Department said the figures reflect Treasury forecasts of a softer labour market in coming years, with unemployment forecast to rise to 6.25 per cent in the June quarter next year.

Graduates in full-time employment fell from 76 per cent in 2012 to 71 per cent last year, according to a Graduate Destination Survey…”

Source: Sydney Morning Herald

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Small U.S. Colleges Battle Death Spiral as Enrollment Drops

“At a Dowling College campus on Long Island’s south shore, a fleet of unused shuttle buses sits in an otherwise empty parking lot. A dormitory is shuttered, as are a cafeteria, bookstore and some classrooms in the main academic building.

“There’s a lot of fear here,” said Steven Fournier, a senior who lived in the now-closed dorm for his first three years. “It’s not the same college I arrived at.”

Dowling, which got a failing grade for its financial resources from accreditors last month, epitomizes the growing plight of many small private colleges that depend almost entirely on tuition for revenue. It’s been five years since the recession ended and yet their finances are worsening. Soaring student debt, competition from online programs and poor job prospects for graduates are shrinking their applicant pools.

“What we’re concerned about is the death spiral — this continuing downward momentum for some institutions,” said Susan Fitzgerald, an analyst at Moody’s Investors Service in New York. “We will see more closures than in the past.”

Moody’s, which rates more than 500 public and private nonprofit colleges and universities, downgraded an average of 28 institutions annually in the five years through 2013, more than double the average of 12 in the prior five-year period…”

Source: Bloomberg

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High School Student Arrested After Notifying Principal ‘We’re Disappointed In You’

“…In footage shot discreetly by one of the student protesters, Principal Tobias is witnessed attempting to lecture students about how staging a sit-in is not the appropriate way to resolve their conflict.

“I am disappointed in every one of you,” Tobias began telling the students after he managed to get them to quiet down.

“We’re disappointed in you,” Hunter Ernst, 18, of Schererville, replied, to which students cheered and applauded in support.

At that point, as if in some future dystopian world, Principal Tobias signaled a school officer to take the boy away. “I’d like him removed please,” Tobias is heard telling the officer.

Ernst was arrested and taken to the Lake County Jail where he was released on bond the same day. He was charged with disorderly conduct, resisting arrest and possession of a pocket knife on school property, the St. John police chief told the NWI Times

“It has been said that America’s schools are the training ground for future generations,” John Whitehead, president of the Rutherford Institute, has written of the indoctrination taking place in public schools. “If so, and unless we can do something to rein in this runaway train, this next generation will be the most compliant, fearful and oppressed generation ever to come of age in America, and they will be marching in lockstep with the police state.”

Infowars

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John Perkins Discusses Economic Destabilization, Sorting Through Truth, 9/11 and Confessions Part 2

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Honest University Commercial – EveRy University

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Yves Engler and the Black Book of Canadian Foreign Policy

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