March 13, 2010

"The Death and Life of the Great American School System"

In Slate, Sara Mosle offers an interesting review of veteran neoconservative education guru Diane Ravitch's new book, in which Ravitch admits that she was naive about how to fix schools:

[Ravitch] argues that if we think the data hold the answer, we're indulging in wishful thinking, and her case should be enough to unsettle the best and the brightest as they take their turn at reform. Teacher quality, recruitment, and retention have become the new frontlines of this reform, spurred in part by powerful computer programs that can now mine mountains of data with relative ease. Ravitch focuses on the analyses of William Sanders, then a statistician at the University of Tennessee, whose previous work was in agriculture, manufacturing, and engineering. Drawing on past studies rather than on visits to classrooms, he decided that the single most important variable affecting students' performance is their teacher. (This is contrary to much research that suggests levels of poverty, health, parental education, and peer influences have equal or greater impact.) Since teachers' abilities vary widely, Sanders developed models for performing what is known as "value-added assessments"—that is, determining how much specific teachers boost achievement (based on test scores) for specific students over time.

Enter Stanford economists Eric Hanuchek and Steven Rivkin, whose further explorations Ravitch scrutinizes. They looked at how different variables—certification, general education level, salary—affected teacher quality. Nothing, in their judgment, was predictive. "A good teacher," they concluded, "would be one who consistently obtained high learning growth from students, while a poor teacher would be one who consistently produced low learning growth." So schools, they argued, should just open the profession to anyone and see who sinks or swim. They offered a tidy formula for how swimmers could be saviors: If a student had a teacher in the 85th percentile of teachers for five years in a row, they calculated, this would be enough to eliminate the persistent "achievement gap" between low-income and high-income students—the still-elusive grail of reform.

Hanuchek and Rivkin understandably want to improve the quality of instruction in impoverished schools, which undeniably can become repositories for the worst teachers. What Ravitch doubts is that this intervention all by itself can realistically promise to turn around failing schools in such extraordinary fashion, without any attention to other variables that affect student outcomes. And as a practical matter, she asks, how are schools—especially in inner-city neighborhoods—supposed to attract these large stables of consistent superstars? As Ravitch writes, "This is akin to saying baseball teams should consist only of players who hit over .300 and pitchers who win at least 20 games every season; after all, such players exist, so why should not such teams exist." The model also assumes yearly gains are cumulative, when most studies show that students (particularly low-income students) backslide substantially during summer months. At the very least, such an intervention would likely need to be coupled with efforts to extend the school day and school year.

But perhaps most damning, Ravitch writes:

No school or school district or state anywhere in the nation had ever proved the theory correct. Nowhere was there a real-life demonstration in which a district had identified a top quintile of teachers, assigned low-performing students to their classes, and improved the test-scores of low-performing students so dramatically in three, four or five years that the black-white test score gap closed.

Yet suddenly this one theory is driving reform. ...

The dirty dark secret of NCLB is that we may know how to identify the worst performing schools, but no one (yet) knows how to turn them around in any consistent and reliable way. And I mean no one. Not the Gates Foundation to date. Not most charter programs. No one.

As one study Ravitch cites concludes: "The only guaranteed strategy [for improving schools] is to change the student population, replacing low-performing students with higher-performing students." And this is, in fact, what the rare success stories—like KIPP—typically do: skim off the best and most motivated students from disadvantaged neighborhoods. These best students deserve better options, but this approach doesn't address the larger problem of how to fix chronically failing schools.

My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

60 comments:

l said...

The top post on Larry Auster's blog concerns Obama's ideal: Turning the making of policy and the management of the country over to academics. If the PhDs in any given field reach consensus on something, let them shape the policy.

There are no political or doctrinal biases in academia.

RandyB said...

Did the researchers use international sources? Public education is not an example of American exceptionalism. What works in Japan, Germany, Canada and the more successful mixed-race Caribbean countries, like Barbados?

Liberals avoid international educational comparisons because it becomes obvious what a dominant factor HBD is. Conservatives avoid them because a nationalized cirriculum is the best practice.

Black Sea said...

Every once in a while, you'll run across an article lamenting the decline of the NY city school system. In the 1930s and 40s, you'll be told, NY had one of the best public school systems in America. And now . . .

Such articles then lay out an array of possible causes, some politcal, some sociological, some pedagogical, for the deterioration of NY's schools, without ever addressing the elephant in the living room: the changes in the demographic composition of NY's public schools between then and now.

jem said...

Apparently, you can still cheat your way to success. Read about Charleston's 'miracle worker' principle who was caught fixing test scores. She simply moved to another school system in another state. No consequences.

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/10/31/education/31charleston.html

DK said...

So arent they just measuring teacher success by the performance of their previous students? And if teacher's stay put for more than a year or two isn't "teacher success" simply dependant on the demographic profile of the students they teach.

Ken said...

Sanders' research is not contrary to research about "poverty, health, parental education" or race. Sanders measures how much each student's test scores improve in a school year, not the student's absolute score.

This controls for how the student starts out each school year, so effectively controls for student demographics.

rightsaidfred said...

Our educational sages stumbling around the issue of student ability reminds me of the psychology experiment where a thirsty rat continued to lick a cool metal bar seemingly ad infinitum. Our "educators" are doing the equivalent of licking a cool metal bar to quench their thirst.

teacher.paris said...

Letter from South Africa

http://mysasucks.com/2010/03/13/letter-to-my-children-from-an-ex-liberal/

Anonymous said...

No matter how large, ugly, and foul smelling, the continued ability of liberals to not acknowledge the 500 pound gorilla in the room defies credulity!

Kylie said...

Am I the only one who finds the title of Obama's educational fix, "Race to the Top" unsettling?

LesNorsemorbles said...

Studies have over and over shown that students from homes with 3 or more full bathrooms perform better in school. Why don't we use some of that stimulus money to cram two more bathrooms into inner-city homes and apartments?

Anonymous said...

Maybe the first step is to stop using the term "failing schools" and replace it with "failing students." It's not the schools that need fixing, but the students.
But on another level, isn't all this PhD engineered bs not unlike our financial meltdown? Complicated models breaking down something involving human action and behavior in variables and then trying to use these models to get impossible results? Financial markets ignored the demographic behavior and culture of many of the loanees as well as bankers' own propensity for greed and relied on bogus instruments to continue giving them unsustainable returns. Similarly, these school models that break down the educational process into variables without discussing the demographics or culture of students while simultaneously ignoring educational institutions' own lack of discipline are looking for unsustainable returns on performance from students that have no ability to give them. In both cases the reduction of humans to variables without any discussion of culture or behavior outside of the theoretical framework dooms the models to failure.

Anonymous said...

We don't want government in the bedroom — why should we want government in the classroom? Public schools have to teach skepticism, theism, atheism, agnosticism, or some religiously-relevant point of view — isn't it a union of church and state to teach the government's curriculum to unformed young minds?

Anonymous said...

To make sure the best teachers really do improve performance, they *must* make sure the better teachers weren't simply assigned better students. I wonder if they did that. The better teachers surely have more employment options. They are in a stronger bargaining position vis-a-vis the principal. The principal might therefore assign them a slightly better (thus more enjoyable) class, perhaps even unconsciously.

Anonymous said...

So someone should look into that question in these folks' publications, if they feel like. I have a headache, myself.

Captain Jack Aubrey said...

Some day ages and ages hence - actually within a few years, I hope - people will look back on the Blank Slaters in the same way that we look back on the story of Galileo and the Inquisition, with the exception being that the Blank Slate Theory had far greater and disastrous consequences for our society than geocentrism ever did. Blank Slatism may yet destroy a nation, if not the entire West.

OneSTDV said...

This is my favorite chart:

Education Spending Does Nothing

So much for 40 years of education reform.

Anonymous said...

Is the problem the schools or the students in the schools?

jody said...

steve, you have a typo in the first sentence:

"hot to fix schools"

although i'm confident many politicians are indeed "hot" to fix public schools.

Thrasymachus said...

No one wants to teach at these schools and no learning is possible because the students are disruptive, disrespectful and don't want to learn. Can I have my big consulting fee now?

stari_momak said...

Teacher quality, recruitment, and retention have become the new frontlines of this reform, spurred in part by powerful computer programs that can now mine mountains of data with relative ease.

Teacher quality, recruitment, and retention have become the new frontlines of this reform, spurred on entirely by the hunt for the great white scapegoat -- yes, there will be collateral damage here, but think reverse disparate impact-- for the 'failure' to educate the offspring of third and forth world peasants to first world standards.

JoeShipman said...

It really is important to get good teachers into the dysfunctional schools, not to close the gap, but to make sure that almost all the children manage to achieve the level necessary to function competently in society (read at an
8th grade level, be capable of writing in complete sentences, be able to figure out how much change the store should be giving you). Anyone with an IQ of at least 80 is certainly capable of this (though the 80's may not reach the 8th grade reading level until 12th grade, they can get there).

The current system fails horribly at this basic requirement in urban areas.

There are lots in the 70's who won't get this far but can at least be taught to read well enough to easily understand signage (so they can drive, follow simple written instructions, and fill bottom-level jobs).

For the kids in the 60's and below (5% of the kids for the current demographic mix) I don't have answers for what the school system should do for them. Any suggestions?

Svigor said...

Liberal gymnastics, or, how to have a conversation around the elephant on the coffee table.

Mr. Anon said...

Metaphorically, we all of us live in Plato's cave.

But these people aren't even looking at the shadows on the wall. They're staring at thier feet with thier eyes shut tight and thier hands over thier ears, shouting "La, La, La, I can't hear you!".

Anonymous said...

lookee lookee here

http://american.com/archive/2010/march/are-some-races-more-equal-than-others

airtommy said...

teacher.paris said...
Letter from South Africa
http://mysasucks.com/2010/03/13/letter-to-my-children-from-an-ex-liberal/


"Twice the USA has occupied Haiti, building roads, ports, hospitals and schools while putting in a functional society,

The moment the Americans left they reverted to dictatorship ..."

General Smedley Butler of the US Marine Corps tells a slightly different tale

"In 1915 a force of rebel Haitians known as Cacos, waged a campaign against the Haitian dictator Vilbrun Guillaume Sam. In response, the United States ordered the USS Connecticut to Haiti with Major Butler and a group of Marines on board. The Marines successfully defended the dictator."

And your South African wingnut doesn't even mention 2004, when we dispensed with the "road-building". We just invaded, sacked the democratic government, kidnapped the president, and left.

kurt9 said...

teacher.paris: I just did a "google Earth" on Haiti. The ex-liberal from South Africa was not kidding when he said that Haiti is a denuded landscape. I have heard this, but was shocked to see it with my own eyes.

Mike Mck said...

I recently met with my (small) state's top education official to talk about issues in my community and beyond.

A former student of mine is doing TFA in Philly and blogging about it. She complained to her vice-principal that two of her students are disruptive and keeping others from learning, and how could the teacher get them to behave. The VP responded that no one has figured out how to make those two behave.

In response, the teacher asked if they could just be removed from the class. No dice.

In a topic about disruptive students, there was a question about disruptive students and how to keep them from disrupting others. I approved of this and suggested there must be something to keep them from disrupting others (liberal version - greatest good for the greatest number).

The answer was that "Good teachers know how to make all students well behaved and attentive" (as remembered with the meaning intact).

Change topic. I once met and talked to Sanders. He is decidedly not of the style of a coastal liberal. On thing that he said is that his research indicates is that the most damaged students from a bad teacher are the bright minority students stuck on low performing classes and schools.

Even with group differences, there should be an effort to give those who actually care the opportunity to advance as high as their ability and interests allow.

Tom Regan said...

You know the reason white athletes aren't as good at elite sprinting events as black athletes? Coaching.
Yep. If only the best coaches were assigned to white sprinters, they'd perform at the same level as black sprinters. Because all men are created equal, right? So if they're not all crossing the finish line at the same time, there must be something wrong with the, errr, race. Right?

Anonymous said...

The problem is a dumb kid is a dumb kid is always a dumb kid and adult. Sorry about that but that's just an undeniable fact. And for each anecdotal contrary example you show, I will point to the endless cohorts of the dumb.

Anonymous said...

And your South African wingnut doesn't even mention 2004, when we dispensed with the "road-building". We just invaded, sacked the democratic government, kidnapped the president, and left.
----

Settle down Nadine Gordimer...And I'll see you in school Monday!

Black Sea said...

Rest easy friends. The New York Times makes all clear to the bewildered reader:

"The countries that have left the United States behind in math and science education have one thing in common: They offer the same high education standards — often the same curriculum — from one end of the nation to the other."

So you see, the problem all along has been that wayward states, and even individual districts, have been allowed to create a "mediocre patchwork of standards."

And then you ask, what will these nationwide standards demand? Good question!

"By fifth grade, for example, students would be required to write essays in which they introduce, support and defend opinions, using specific facts and details. And by 12th grade, students would be expected to solve problems or answer questions by conducting focused research projects — and display skills generally associated today with the first year of college."

Now, what do you suppose will happen to those fifth graders who inexplicably struggle to write not only a thesis-driven argumentative essay, but a semi-coherent string of sentences? Or for that matter, a single sentence.

How about those proto-scholars on the cusp of graduation who aren't quite up to doing independent research projects at the level of a college sophomore?

One thing's for sure. From Massachusetts to Mississippi, we won't compromise our standards!

Gene Berman said...

Capt. Jack:

Blaming the "Blank Slate" theory for decline is a mistake, as are other attempts to focus on one or another problematic aspect of the current culture of the nation.

There is a single, underlying cause for most of what all of us (and many others in the larger society, including very many of those we'd consider "enemies") find unsatisfactory. It's name is socialism and, though our former, more formally socialist enemy, the USSR, no longer threatens world peace, the degree of socialism that has been permitted to reach into nearly every aspect of American life is, in many respects, a more dire threat. And the worst part is that there is no viable, recognizable counterforce in the political life of the nation. Not only is the left solidly and avowedly socialist but even those we think of as on the right, or "conservative," are at least 50% permeated by socialist ideas. Further, the potential critics who could possibly mount effective resistance are busied with complaining (and, sometimes, campaigning) against one or another of the excrescenses of socialist governance, whether failing schools, uncontrolled immigration, etc.

Don't take my word for it. Read SOCIALISM (L. von Mises, 1922) and you'll understand it just as well as I. You can even read it online--free--over at mises.org. (And that goes for everyone else here, also).

Captain Jack Aubrey said...

Mr. Berman,

Socialism would be a temporary and unsustainable political hiccup were it not for the fundamental alteration of our demographic profile via mass Third World immigration. Socialism has certainly aided that alteration, but it is mass immigration, not socialism, that will have the biggest effect on our country's future.

Political ideologies wax and wane, and disappear sometimes without leaving nary a mark on the nation's collective conscience, but immigration has fundamentally altered the nation itself. Come AD 2100 the geographic expression known as the United States will be nearly as different from the United States of 1900 as the United States of 1900 was from that of 1490. As of today - right now - 50% of all babies born in this country are mostly low IQ NAMs. Come 2100 that means that, at best, 50% of nonagenarians will be white, meaning that 60-80% of the working age population will be low IQ NAM. Think Zimbabwe, South Africa, El Salvador, Mexico or 1950s India.

headache said...

Captain Jack Aubrey said...
Think Zimbabwe, South Africa, El Salvador, Mexico or 1950s India.

I'm a white from South Africa. 2 things:

1. hard-working whites with a positive attitude are actually doing better under black rule than they were doing under Apartheid. Having handed over government responsibility, through massive pressure from the US amongst others, they now are free to exclusively care for their families and communities instead of worrying about the country and wasting their lives in useless conflicts which often served foreign interests. The black elite are jealous of them and may desire a Mugabe-type solution, but they also know who finances their fancy cars and lifestyles through max. tax contributions. So my guess is that they will complain about whites but ultimately leave them alone.


2. Why should the US not receive back what it has been dishing out to other nations since WWII? Germany has been turned into a multi-ethnic state by the US. Serbia was forced to relinquish its ancestral homeland, Kosovo. The US wants Turkey into the EU in order to turn Europe into a multi-ethnic, multi-religious cesspit. And the US was the main force in forcing whites in Rhodesia and South Africa to abdicate. So I say good that the US is now receiving what it has been forcing others to accept. I personally hope to see the demise of the US hegemon in my life.

Gene Berman said...

Captain Jack:

I am quite aware of the situation you describe. I've been interested in the very same matters for some years and have been a follower of Steve's blog during most of that time. What I wish to impress on you (and others) is that to focus on the particular aggravations misses their cause.

These matters are clearly beyond your current understanding (and I'd make the same statement about most of the others present) though I certainly do not think you incapable in that wise: it's a matter of having had the opportunity to reflect on a correct analysis (which is why I made the reading suggestion).

As with many other mistakes made by men, this boils down to a common error: conflating "cause" and "effect." I'll go so far as to say that if we don't begin to dismantle the socialistic aspects of government, no current aspects of decline will improve to any material degree. Withdrawal from socialism, on the other hand, would improve many such sore points without the slightest actual attention needing be paid them. No magic--just Economics!

I could engage you in lengthy argument over one or another point on which our views differ but that would waste time and attention for us both. I'll simply repeat that the key to actually understanding the problems lies in reading what I've suggested; that's my "best shot."

Kylie said...

Captain Jack Aubrey said: "Socialism would be a temporary and unsustainable political hiccup were it not for the fundamental alteration of our demographic profile via mass Third World immigration."

And that fundamental alteration has been helped immeasurably by the rise of feminism. Women are hard-wired to prefer a generous social safety net. They are also hard-wired to be "inclusive", to want to help others, especially those they see as lagging behind. I think Third World immigration could be slowed considerably, if not stopped altogether, if white women of the liberal persuasion were regulated.

Anonymous said...

"The countries that have left the United States behind in math and science education have one thing in common: They offer the same high education standards — often the same curriculum — from one end of the nation to the other."

C'mon dudes, haven't you heard of Rupert Sheldrake? Teaching the same curricula simultaneously across wide geographical areas produces a morphic resonance that, ah, potentializes the noosphere and, uh... quantum thingy...

If you red staters weren't so stupid, you'd grasp this immediately.

Anonymous said...

Seems to me the problem of education in America is two-fold:

1. Ghetto schools, where the main problem is maintaining order just so you can do the bare minimum of imparting basic literacy, numeracy and some notion of middle-class values like hard work and delayed gratification.

2. Middle-class suburban schools, where smug, lazy, and often incompetent teachers waste their students' time with silly ed-school fads and a dumbed-down, PC curriculum.

The two problems require very different solutions.

In ghetto schools, you need to be able to weed out the trouble-makers and enforce a strict regimen of study and personal accountability among the students. (The trouble-makers can be sent to reform schools and taught some menial trade.)

In middle-class suburban schools, you need to break the stranglehold of the teachers' unions, fire lazy, incompetent teachers, replace them with hard-working, competent ones, and adhere to a less fluffy and more rigorous curriculum. (I personally know several very smart, retired engineers and lawyers who wanted to teach in public schools but were kept out by the teachers' rackets--er, sorry, unions. They ended up teaching in private schools.)

DK said...

"This controls for how the student starts out each school year, so effectively controls for student demographics."

Not really. A student with a 160 iq will simply learn faster than a student with a 100 IQ. It doesnt matter if you adjust for academic achev at the start of the year. HIgher IQ=learns faster.

Now, if they are adjusting for IQ that's a whole different story.

However if yearly progress=teacher competence. Then you MUST adjust for IQ (not academic achievement) at the start of the year.

Anonymous said...

In the long run, though, I think public schools are doomed anyway. They're too expensive and the cost-benefit ratio is too heavily skewed toward cost. I suspect that in 30 or 40 years' time the majority of middle-class kids will be either home schooled or taught in some sort of home-school "co-op" of like-minded parents. Public "schools" will become nothing more than government-run, high-security day-care centers for ghetto NAMs (which is practically what they are now, only acknowledgement of this fact will be open and unapologetic).

Gerry said...

For years the focus on schools has been on the poor quality of many classroom teachers with an associated argument against tenure.

Tenure is the wrong target. The real failure of the schools is in school principals, who fail to do their job and weed out the unsatisfactory teachers before they achieve tenure.

I spent many years first as a student, then as a school classroom teacher, department head, city math supervisor and finally as a university teacher who worked with school staffs. Based on that experience with well over a hundred principals, I would rate 3/4 of them unsatisfactory. They failed to identify the supervision and administration of their teaching staff as their primary responsibility and simply did not do their job. Their schools showed it.

It is too bad that we cannot trace unsatisfactory teachers back to the incompetent principals who hired them and allowed them to achieve tenure. Weed out those principals and our schools would improve over the years ahead.

Good teachers and their unions do not want to work with and be forced to support unsatisfactory teachers.

Anonymous said...

There is a bright side to disruptive blacks in the classroom.

One of the commenters included a link to a story about black kids roughing up the Asian kids in Philadelphia high schools. When I was in high school and college I felt strongly drawn to the role of classroom teacher. Teachers were smart and admirable. The students generally recognized this too.

The next crop of teachers is always present among the better students today. But I doubt if there will be many Asian kids who after being harassed and mocked by blacks will dedicate themselves to a teaching career. They will probably forego the lure of the classroom and just become software engineers right away.

With all the turmoil in the high schools today you can expect a bright future for software development.

Anonymous said...

What does "neoconservative" mean in this context?

Anonymous said...

"Why should the US not receive back what it has been dishing out to other nations since WWII? Germany has been turned into a multi-ethnic state by the US. Serbia was forced to relinquish its ancestral homeland, Kosovo."

Indeed, how better to punish our ruling class than by increasing crime and driving down labor costs with massive immigration - that'll show em! Well okay, the crime won't affect them and the cheap labor will actually help them, but at least it'll give those poor Americans what for!

Every time I despair of the white American public, I see that foreign whites have regressed to an almost infantile morality.

kurt9 said...

"So I say good that the US is now receiving what it has been forcing others to accept."

This is called practice what you preach.

"I personally hope to see the demise of the US hegemon in my life."

I have some sympathy with this position.

Melykin said...

headache wrote:
" The US wants Turkey into the EU in order to turn Europe into a multi-ethnic, multi-religious cesspit. "
------------------------

Europe is well on its way to cesspit-dom, even without Turkey.

wake up said...

who the hell cares anymore? these arguments are so damn old......its not 1970......are you gonna bat this issue back and forth until the end of time? these jerks should be showered with invective instead of engaged in argument......

intelligent people voted with their feet a long time ago and refused to let the system edumacate (abuse) their children.........a lot of the intellectuals engaging in public debate have also made sure their children are not fed into the meat grinder........this conversation in the nyc salon media is a bunch of posturing and signaling done between rival liberal and left wing tribes.......the same cretins have fanned out over the country and experimented on (destroyed) dallas and los angeles and so many other places in the past forty years.........

Jim O'Sullivan said...

That's 4 of the last 5 posts. Anything else interesting you lately?

Svigor said...

[Ravitch] argues that if we think the data hold the answer, we're indulging in wishful thinking

Projection/Freudian Slip.

Anonymous said...

I personally hope to see the demise of the US hegemon in my life."

Your grandchildren will dream of it when they are under China's hegemon.

Slampo said...

"The dirty dark secret of NCLB is that we may know how to identify the worst performing schools, but no one (yet) knows how to turn them around in any consistent and reliable way. And I mean no one. Not the Gates Foundation to date. Not most charter programs. No one."

Bingo.

John Seiler said...

She wrote: "This is akin to saying baseball teams should consist only of players who hit over .300 and pitchers who win at least 20 games every season; after all, such players exist, so why should not such teams exist." That's maybe 10 players and 2 pitchers, so the analogy to schools isn't a great one.

But what if we make it, "players who hit over .200 and pitchers who win at least 5 games every season"? Then you have several hundred players in the major leagues, all of them making high salaries.

But as I've said before, there's no point in reforming the government school system. It's socialist, so by definition it can't produce quality.

Scrap it, along with truancy laws, give people back their tax money, and let parents figure out how to teach their kids, or not. The kids belong to them, not the government.

Anonymous said...

Jim O'Sullivan said...
"That's 4 of the last 5 posts. Anything else interesting you lately?"

Uh, there's obviously more than one anon here (and probably more than two).

Gene Berman said...

John Seiler:

"It's socialist, so, by defintion, it can't produce quality."

Careful, John. An all-encompassing statement of that sort will just cause more problems, as the more socialistically-inclined will be able to marshall examples aplenty of quality--even excellence--that they can attribute to socialism. The case against socialism is so otherwise overwhelming that there's no need for hyperbole.

Anonymous said...

Even the secular libtards are getting in on homeschooling:

Why our kids won't go to kindergarten
By Andrew O'Hehir
Monday, Mar 15, 2010 04:01 EDT
salon.com

.

Captain Jack Aubrey said...

The US wants Turkey into the EU in order to turn Europe into a multi-ethnic, multi-religious cesspit.

I don't know that "the US" - meaning our dear, elected leaders - really gives a spit whether Turkey is in the EU or not. The reality is that we have no say in the matter, and I doubt we're putting any real pressure on the EU to admit them. But the United States does need Turkey, especially Incirlik, for our so-called War on Terror, and that means buttering up the Turks. For the same reason the State Department has at least twice put the kibbosh on recongizing the Armenian Genocide.

As others have pointed out, however, Europe is being overrun even without Turkey.

Ronduck said...

Headache...

personally hope to see the demise of the US hegemon in my life."

Your grandchildren will dream of it when they are under China's hegemony
.

Speaking of your suffering grandchildren, do you even have children?

headache said...

Every time I despair of the white American public, I see that foreign whites have regressed to an almost infantile morality.
I see you paleos are still nationalistic. anyway, even that is not essential. pls define "infantile morality"?

headache said...

I don't know that "the US" - meaning our dear, elected leaders - really gives a spit whether Turkey is in the EU or not.
yeah, that's why bush and obama were both heavily lobbying the eu to relax conditions and just get the job done. us has been leaning heavily for turkish ascension.