.Amazing pictures from the Hubble space telescope in this slide-show. [Link via LRC]
"One difference between South African English ["as spoken by whites"] and New Zealand English is in the pronunication of 'ar' and 'ow', as in the pronunciation of the sentence 'park the car downtown'.
* New Zealand: pahk the kah dehwn tehwn
* South Africa: pawk the kaw dahwn tahwn"
"Why of course the people don't want war. Why should some poor slob on a farm want to risk his life in a war when the best he can get out of it is to come back to his farm in one piece? Naturally the common people don't want war: neither in Russia, nor in England, nor for that matter in Germany. That is understood. But, after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the peacemakers for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country."
"People who have never witnessed a homeschooling scene, but know only about school from large classrooms in public school, have a hard time even imagining what goes on or how it all works. This is so clear whenever you read a mainstream educator denounce homeschooling; their ignorance is palpable, and barely worth responding to. How could they know what I saw before me? The students are internally driven to learn. They sense no limits to learning. Once one topic is mastered, they are free to move on. They feel a powerful sense of personal responsibility. Time is used extraordinarily well, not standing in lines or frittering away hours obeying orders from above…"
" The great merit of homeschooling is precisely that it provides an open-ended environment that permits the flowering of intellect that is as effortless in children as it is difficult in adults. Observing this at work, one is tempted to establish a first rule of education: set no limits (within moral bounds) to learning..."
"Initial impressions were disturbing: President Bush was physically unable to stand still as the Colors were being presented -- he kept bopping his head to the march music and talking and laughing to a very still and stiff Secretary of Veterans Affairs, Anthony Principi, who was doing his best to stand at attention and ignore the president's repeated attempts to strike up a conversation during that solemn procession. All of the others on the dais were utterly still and at attention as the Colors were being presented, with either a salute or a hand on heart. Only the president was acting like a kid with ADD during a Ritalin shortage..."