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The Golden Verses Of The Stoic

Seneca and Epictetus refer to the Golden Verses of Pythagoras , which happens to provide a good framework for developing a daily routine, bookended by morning and evening contemplative practices. Zeno of Citium , who founded Stoicism in 301 BC, expressed his doctrines in notoriously terse arguments and concise maxims.  However, Chrysippus, the third head of the Stoic school, wrote over 700 books fleshing these ideas out and adding complex arguments to support them. 

Because of Gates...
Are you really
that stupid?

To my normal readers... just give this one a pass. I'm so going to Rant.  No, really, watch this. Another Great Show by Last Week Tonight.


I have been told by too many people now that one acedemic study or another is invalid, because Bill Gates paid for it to happen. I know this is incredibaly hard to believe, but I have actually had people who claim they are High School Science Teachers... yes Science teachers, tell me this amazingly ignorant statement. What is their proof? On what factual grounds do they base this wildly irresponsible statement on?

"Well... Bill Gates paid for it."

Yes, they repeat the same statement. Of course. And that makes it much more believable.

I'll tell you what it makes me believe. It makes me believe that you can be corrupted with an amazingly small amount of cash, and that you should not be allowed to be near children.

To cut  it short... I did some quick research on Why in the World people Would Feel this way about Bill Gates donating money into the Education System of our Country? Here are some of the things I found.

First, I found This Article -- Which Talks about Bill Gates, a thing called Stacked Ranking, and then blindly proposes that the teachers are being put into the position of being judged by the growth of there students because of the Stacked Ranking that Microsoft uses. Then, it says that Microsoft quit using the system because it destroyed effectivness, caused hundreds of people to quit and drove people insane. BUT the schools are Stuck with it.... the formal name of Stacked Ranking is Vitality Curve. It was adobpted by Microsoft as a method of employee evaluation in 2006. And yes it was dropped as being ineffective for Microsoft  November 12, 2013.

Bill Gates, turned the company over to Steve Ballmer... 2001.

Steve Ballmer ran Microsoft poorly. He was in fact, an ass. It is amazing Microsoft survived him. As soon as he left, that mode of management and evaluation was dropped by Microsoft's HR chief Lisa Brummel. It was just as horrible as most reports say it was. However, Bill Gates had nothing to do with it and in fact ran Microsoft in ways so amazingly opposite in mentality and nature it surprises me that anyone could make a correlation between Stacked Ranking and Gates. It is close to saying John Wayne had sex with his horse.

Now... don't even start with the belief that I like Bill Gates. No. Either back away from that or F-U. Alright? No. I'm Never ever going to be in that camp. But I'm also not going to sit around and base decisions on false information. I'm not going to read a study I don't like the outcome of (because it proves my favorite falsehood false) look at the bottom and say "Well, this was paid for by Gates," as if that made my falsehood suddenly true.

Vanity Fair has a farily true, more than shallow article on this area of Microsoft's life and gets into some of Gates and his management tactics. He was hard, and demanding... but most programmers felt that Microsoft was cool... then Bill left, and it wasn't cool any more.

Next reason...

Now here's an interesting pointed fact example of how this shit gets started. Diane Ravitch 5/2011 has Bill Gates pressing for smaller class sizes and in 2014 Brian Jones is swearing Bill Gates is for Larger Class sizes... well shit.

Diane is right.. On That point. And only that point. Bill Gates got it in his head that class size mattered, and after several studies he paid to have done, pressed for that to happen and spent close to a billion on just that campaign. In New York, he paid for most of the changes ... telling Joel Klien that what he wanted was the classes to be smaller... he was ok with anything else, but his baby was smaller classroom size. So, alot of Big Schools were gutted and made into little schools, with smaller popualations and smaller class sizes.

As you can imagine, this was quite a disruption. Kids were shifted around quite a bit, schools were staffed and then restaffed as other little schools were done with construction and then all of the proplems that come with construction... it was a mess. And it was Howled about in the media. They were rabid. Every little thing that went wrong was Gates fault and Why couldn't he leave their schools alone and that guy Blooberg was in your face all the time shouting about class size didn't matter -- only the teacher mattered.

Bill Gates pressed forward, ignored them all, and got it done. What happened? Well... it didn't work. Yep. No real change in grades, attendence, drop out rate... nothing. Oh, they dogged him for the next year with that one. Gates left, didn't throw any curses over his shoulder as he did, and went to California. And then... the next year... it not only worked it turned out to be even better than predicted. Grades rose to As and B's, where before they were Ds and Fs. Drop-out became a rare and odd word. Violence became non-existant. Teachers were happy. It just took a year.

"The only reason Bill Gates is involved is to make money off our kids."

Really? Alright. Bill Gates has dropped into the Education System of the US over $8 billion dollars since 2007. Seven years, a little over $1 billion a year. -- that math maybe low. You can check on his web site as he posts every grant he puts out and where the money is going and to what purpose it was said to be going to. But I think that I'm fairly safe with the one billion a year estimate.

Do you really get how much money a Billion dollars is? I mean, really? I don't. I can't get my head around it. I've tried. A Billion is:

"a lot of money" X "even more money"

Making a profit on that much investment - is going to be a very hard venture to hide. 

Now... please show me from a reputable source ... as in not Fox News or anyone like them... a reputable source recording a single dime coming back to him in the last seven years. Just ten cents. It's ok if you find more. Sure. But at the very least, ten cents.

I'm not saying that it hasn't... I haven't even checked. I just happen to feel I know Bill Gates a little.

See, Biil Gates is a man that, while walking down the street, finds $100 bill on the ground, and loses money if he stops to pick it up. Bill Gates is also a man who doesn't care at all what you think about him.

Now I know you've heard that about a lot of people and you may have even said it about yourself. But in this matter, trust me when I say, that he is on a whole different level with it. It is close to psycotic. He honestly doesn't see your opinion of him worth the breath it took to expel it.

So, with zero social need, and absolutely no monetary purpose, Bill Gates has no reason to lie, and in fact doesn't lie because he doesn't value your beliefs about him. Check the history. Bill has been recorded again and again blatantly telling some seriously powerful people some hard truths about them, their company and their life style. He's also said some unflattering things about his goals and what he wants out of life. He says them with a straight face and then... he does those things.
  • "Just in terms of allocation of time resources, religion is not very efficient. There's a lot more I could be doing on a Sunday morning." - Time Magazine
  • "We've done some good work, but all of these products become obsolete so fast... "It will be some finite number of years, and I don't know the number — before our doom comes." 97 Forbes"
  • "Sometimes we do get taken by surprise. For example, when the Internet came along, we had it as a fifth or sixth priority. It wasn't like somebody told me about it and I said, "I don't know how to spell that." I said, "Yeah, I've got that on my list, so I'm okay." But there came a point when we realized it was happening faster and was a much deeper phenomenon than had been recognized in our strategy."
  • "Microsoft has had clear competitors in the past. It’s a good thing we have museums to document that."
  • "Any operating system without a browser is going to be fucking out of business. Should we improve our product, or go out of business?"
  • "Stolen's a strong word. It's copyrighted content that the owner wasn't paid for. So yes."
  • "It's easier for our software to compete with Linux when there's piracy than when there's not." -Bill Gates, Fortune Magazine, July 17 2007
  • "This leads to the paradox, that because the disease is only in the poor countries, there is not much investment. For example, there is more money put into baldness drugs, than are put into malaria. Now, baldness, it is a terrible thing [audience laughter] and rich men are afflicted, so that is why that priority is set." TED after committing to curing malaria.

NOTE: Something you should keep in mind with that last one. There is no money in "curing" a disease. You'll never get back what you invested with a cure. "Treatment" is where the money is... now, look at AIDS. Bill is after a cure. He won't stop at "treatement".

So, can we agree that a man who says things like this infront of Presiedents, and Popes, really doesn't see you as someone worth lying to? Oh hell yeah, Watch Dog the hell out of him! I'm not stupid. But to believe this man gives a rats ass about you... that's not very bright either.

Now... these studies. There is one thing that every billionaire has in common. Lack of "Yes" men. Show me a single billionaire who made his money, not those twits who inherited it, but made it, who has a single "Yes" man on his staff. When they pay for a report, or a study, that damn thing better be accurate. Because if it is not, and they find out ... the backlash.... Bill Gates in six months time pushed through, what, all but four states? ... a huge policy change without a single state politician getting his hands into it and messing with it like they always do. That is some serious personal power.  Imagine all of that power, turning dark and mean, and coming after your little research group.

Bill Gates doesn't care, really, one way or the other, if those reports back Common Core, or don't. What he cares about is that he has accurate information on Common Core. If it sucks, he wants to know and he wants to know now.. not five years from now.. right now. Because he has already moved on folks. Common Core is a done deal for him. He's on to the next level.