Department of Schadenfreude
Ha ha, MOOCs are a craptastic fraud pushed by university administratiors (so they can fire teachers)
After Setbacks, Online Courses Are Rethought
"Rethought" by their proponents. The people who got this one right don't have to do any thinking at all.
A study of a million users of massive open online courses, known as MOOCs, released this month by the University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education found that, on average, only about half of those who registered for a course ever viewed a lecture, and only about 4 percent completed the courses. ...
And perhaps the most publicized MOOC experiment, at San Jose State University, has turned into a flop. It was a partnership announced with great fanfare at a January news conference featuring Gov. Jerry Brown of California, a strong backer of online education. San Jose State and Udacity, a Silicon Valley company co-founded by a Stanford artificial-intelligence* professor, Sebastian Thrun, would work together to offer three low-cost online introductory courses for college credit.
But the pilot classes, of about 100 people each, failed. Despite access to the Udacity mentors**, the online students last spring — including many from a charter high school in Oakland — did worse than those who took the classes on campus. In the algebra class, fewer than a quarter of the students — and only 12 percent of the high school students — earned a passing grade.
I remember very well, in the summer of 2012, the "coup" at the University of Virginia. Read below the fold...
ObamaCare Clusterfuck: Obama: "What we're also discovering is, you know, insurance is complicated to buy."
ObamaCare Clusterfuck: A hat tip to our old friend Nancy DiParle, Obama's personal choice to lead ObamaCare's implementation
In May 2010, two months after the Affordable Care Act squeaked through Congress, President Obama’s top economic aides were getting worried. Larry Summers, director of the White House’s National Economic Council, and Peter Orszag, head of the Office of Management and Budget, had just received a pointed four-page memo [The Cutler Memo] WaPo: from a trusted outside health adviser. It warned that no one in the administration was “up to the task” of overseeing the construction of an insurance exchange and other intricacies of translating the 2,000-page statute into reality.
Summers, Orszag and their staffs agreed. For weeks that spring, a tug of war played out inside the White House, according to five people familiar with the episode. On one side, members of the economic team and Obama health-care adviser Zeke Emanuel lobbied for the president to appoint an outside health reform “czar” with expertise in business, insurance and technology. On the other, the president’s top health aides — who had shepherded the legislation through its tortuous path on Capitol Hill and knew its every detail — argued that they could handle the job.
In the end, the economic team never had a chance: The president had already made up his mind, according to a White House official who spoke on the condition of anonymity in order to be candid. Obama wanted his health policy team — led by Nancy-Ann DeParle, director of the White House Office of Health Reform — to be in charge of the law’s arduous implementation. Since the day the bill became law, the official said, the president believed that “if you were to design a person in the lab to implement health care, it would be Nancy-Ann.”
Well, well, well. Nothing is every lost, is it? Read below the fold...
All those people who mansplained to me why it was important to choose Obama because of the “executive ability” he displayed running his campaign (you know, the one David Plouffe and Axelrod actually ran?) can step up now and explain to me how Mr. Executive Ability bungled this one. They would have been better off turning it over to telemarketers.
ObamaCare Clusterfuck: Congress critters and staffers still trying to avoid being forced onto the Exchanges, because of "rate shock"
Currently, aides and lawmakers receive their health care under the generous Federal Employee Health Benefits Program. The government subsidizes upward of 75 percent of the premiums for the health insurance plans. In 2014, most Capitol Hill aides and lawmakers are expected to be put onto the exchanges, and there has been no guidance whether the government will subsidize those premiums. This is expected to cause a steep spike in health insurance costs.
Poor babies! Read below the fold...
Shell’s ill-fated attempt to tow an offshore oil rig from Alaska to Seattle in the final days of December was motivated by a desire to avoid $7m (£4.3m) of Alaskan state taxes, it emerged today.
But the oil giant will instead suffer a multi-million dollar loss on the exercise after the rig ran aground off the Alaskan coast on Monday night.
Ha ha. Read below the fold...
WASHINGTON -- The Obama administration, state attorneys general, and, perhaps, the nation's largest banks are close to a final settlement on the years-long struggle over allegations of massive foreclosure fraud, according to several sources familiar with the talks. And the final details of the arrangement, according to the source who revealed them, will apparently not preclude prosecutors and regulators from taking legal action against many of the common abuses during the house bubble. It remains to be seen whether all parties will ultimately sign off on the language.Read below the fold...
Whenever I hear our thugs in higher office say "infrastructure program," I think complicated privatization schemes, outrageous no-bid contracts, and other creative ways to sodomize the American purse.
One such example is the sewer project that has completely ruined Jefferson County, Alabama.
And now, The Exiled has uncovered the latest attempt to steal the most precious resource to all of us: water.
WATER WARS: GOV. JERRY BROWN’S PET PUBLIC-TO-PRIVATE WEALTH TRANSFER PROJECT IS A GORead below the fold...
By Yasha Levine
All of this talk has Obama insiders — who were indifferent to Weprin’s fate — flummoxed.
"Ho hum, just another House seat." Not buying it. Read below the fold...
In April 2010, Kenneth I. Starr was charged in a multi-count indictment filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York with various wire fraud and money laundering charges, among others. On September 10, 2010, Starr pleaded guilty to three counts of the indictment, including wire fraud and money laundering. (Starr also pleaded guilty to fraud as an investment advisor.) Starr subsequently was sentenced to a prison term of 90 months, three years of supervised release, restitution of an amount to be determined in a future order but not more than $50 million and no less than $29,112,782, and a forfeiture of $29,112,782.Read below the fold...