8/28/12

Taking their own advice?

Today's Korea Times has a staff editorial about the struggles of Korean parents to pay for private tutoring for their children. The KT concludes: 
"Solutions won’t be easy to find. Yet, in order to lay the groundwork for
the country’s sustainable development, our overspending problems in education should be rectified as soon as possible. In particular, it would be urgent to reduce demand for private education by upgrading public education. Now is the time for parents to change their mindset on getting a college degree."
1) I guess I was in the policy battles in Washington, DC, for too long. I now skip past the analysis, statistics, new hip phrases and get right to the conclusion/alleged solutions. The last paragraph finally mentions the lack of solutions. If they had one, they probably would have started the staff editorial with that.


2) So the Korea Times says public education needs to be upgraded. 

Questions 
* How long has the Korea Times been saying that? 
* How likely is public education to be upgraded anytime soon? 
* And if it isn't upgraded anytime soon, then what?
* Could it be in Korea's competitive education world that parents will never be truly satisfied with the public option, always seeking to get ahead? Meaning the comment that public education needs to be upgraded is a meaningless statement...


8/14/12

Upcoming


Korea: The Hidden Economic Miracle
Thursday, August 16, 2012
7 p.m. Artreon TOZ, Shinchon subway (near Yonsei University)

* * * Henrique Schneider, chief economist of the Swiss Federation of Small and Medium Enterprises, Switzerland’s biggest think tank, and a member of the Swiss Council for Energy and the Swiss Competition Commission, will be the featured speaker. 10,000 won per person, wire to Woori account 1002-842-088197 by August 13 (15,000 won per person after that).
Casey Lartigue, a visiting scholar at the Liberty Society and host of the event, will also comment on Korea's economic miracle.

RSVP by August 13, 10,000 won per person. After that or at the door, the charge will be 15,000 or until seats are filled. Email caseyradio@daum.net to confirm your RSVP with the spelling of your name on your bank account. Food and beverages will be served. Business Casual (i.e., dress as your mother would dress you) requested, but even Business Clown will be accepted.
* * *
August 20, Seoul National University
Casey Lartigue, a visiting scholar at the Liberty Society, will be giving a 90 minute presentation to about 30 Seoul National University students who want to study or live abroad in the future.
* * *


Two authors popular with South Korean readers are leading critics of capitalism and free markets. Last month, we examined Harvard professor Michael Sandel. This month, we turn to Chang Ha-Joon of the University of Cambridge. Aaron McKenzie and Casey Lartigue, Jr., both Visiting Scholars with the Liberty Society, will kick off the discussion with comments about Chang's analysis. Roundtable attendees will then be invited to join the discussion. More details to follow later.

8/13/12

Colbert King's latest drive-by on Limbaugh

William Raspberry
1) Former Washington Post columnist William Raspberry recently passed away. He was one of those thoughtful columnists who usually considered both (or more) sides of an issue before coming to a conclusion. To be sure, he usually came down on the left side, but it was clear that he wasn't knee-jerk. I read his column for about 15 years.
2) Back in 1993, Raspberry wrote a column accusing talk show host Rush Limbaugh of being a bigot similar to racist politicians of the past. Then, after actually listening to Limbaugh's shows, wrote an apology. Limbaugh dubbed that the Raspberry Effect.
3) Colbert I. King of the Post (read below) has picked up from Raspberry's original column.

August 11, 2012

King starts off: 
"We may never know why Wade Michael Page, an avowed white supremacist, opened fire on Sunday on worshipers at a Sikh temple in the Milwaukee suburbs. After killing six people and wounding three others, he turned the gun on himself. Authorities say he was a lone wolf."
CJL: But King identifies an accomplice: Radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh.
"We may never know why Wade Michael Page pulled the trigger. And it would be wrong and unfair to infer that Limbaugh made him do it. But words like Limbaugh's stir up the darkest feelings."
* * *
May 21, 2011:
Headline: The president, in black and white
"Short of renouncing his race, buck dancing on the White House lawn and singing the virtues of white supremacy, Obama will never please the likes of Limbaugh, Gingrich et al."
* * *
March 27, 2010:
Headline: Faces we've seen before; The deeper roots of Tea Party rage

The angry faces at Tea Party rallies are eerily familiar. They resemble faces of protesters lining the street at the University of Alabama in 1956 as Autherine Lucy, the school's first black student, bravely tried to walk to class.
Tea Party members, as with their forerunners who showed up at the University of Alabama and Central High School, behave as they do because they have been culturally conditioned to believe they are entitled to do whatever they want, and to whomever they want, because they are the "real Americans," while all who don't think or look like them are not.
And they are consequential. Without folks like them, there would be be no Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, Sean Hannity or Pat Buchanan.

* * *

February 14, 2010 Sunday
TV show: WJLA "INSIDE WASHINGTON
MR. KING:  But, you know, this is not quite the classic Republican Party that's being described here.  You have Rush Limbaugh who represents, I think, the Taliban wing of the Republican Party who is urging -- urging the party in Washington to say, no.  He said, be the party of no.  Resist compromise with them.  Don't try to work with this administration.  You should be the party of no, no, no.  And that's what they're listening to.
* * *
June 6, 2009
Headline: Where the Angriest Words Can Lead
My words may have helped get a man fired.
What do Hannity, Limbaugh and the pro-gun lobby expect theirs will do?
Words, after all, have consequences.

* * *

So for three years, King has been suggesting in print and broadcast media that Limbaugh's words can cause violence. I suspect that King has an opinion piece on his hard drive, ready to be pubilished, with the name and date of a racist killer who finally says, "I'm a dittohead, Rush Limbaugh's words encouraged me to (fill-in-the-blank)."

There has been no smoking gun, not even from former avowed white supremacists who have written for the Washington Post. In the Outlook section of the Washington Post the same weekend that King's published his latest about Limbaugh, there's an actual piece by a former white supremacist. The former white supremacist did not mention Limbaugh as motivating his actions, although King, who is so good at reading code and between the lines, would probably spot a connection anyway.

* * *

If Rush Limbaugh asked me what to do about this, I would suggest that he have a promotional with his Two If By Tea business. Offer a free case of Raspberry Iced Tea, in honor of William Raspberry, to anyone who happened to get a Letter to the Editor published in the Washington Post criticizing Colbert King's latest anti-Raspberry Effect column.

Casey

8/9/12

Chang Ha-Joon's books banned in South Korea?

According to Iggy Mogo: "ha-joon chang. all his books are banned in his own country… and having them can even land you in jail, jail for a very long time (national security law of s. korea)."

As a microcosm of Chang's writings, the text is based on hyperbole and distortions. According to a Yonhap story, one of Chang's books is one 23 books banned by the South Korean military:

"The Constitutional Court on Thursday justified the military's ban on books labeled seditious, arguing that the prohibition serves to prevent the weakening of soldiers' spirits."

The defense ministry banned 23 books it categorized as subversive for pro-North Korea, anti-capitalism, anti-government or anti-U.S. contents. The list included "Bad Samaritans" by Chang Ha-jun, a Cambridge-educated Korean economist critical of capitalism, "The Global Trap" by Hans-Peter Martin, an Austrian journalist, as well as books about North Korea."
I stopped in Kyobo book store in downtown Seoul yesterday. Two of Chang's books were prominently displayed, in both English and Korean. Perhaps Iggy Mogo was referring to North Korea.

I'm not in favor of Chang's idiotic books being banned, but I was tempted to burn my own copy after reading his latest book. Next time, I may just burn the money or donate it to charity the next time I am tempted to buy one of his books.

And here's a photo of Bad Samartians, the book banned by the Korean military but for sale in downtown Seoul at a major book store.