Technologically Inspired

June 26, 2010

A homeschooling website I contributed to will be out soon!

Allen Ellis, a supercool unschooler I met at NBTSC ’09, is making an awesome website with information about unschooling.

The relevance to this blog of course, is that I wrote two pages of mini-essays about my unschooling experiences for him, some of which are being used. I can’t send you all the link yet, since the website isn’t finished, but I will as soon as it comes out.

There is another excellent piece of media on the internet created by Allen Ellis however, which is the following video about NBTSC. If you are a homeschooler, unschooler, or the parent of one, and don’t know about NBTSC, I highly suggest you watch it.

Also see: http://www.nbtsc.org/

June 20, 2010

I am a Unschooler, and I am alive.

Alright, first things first. I haven’t posted in almost a year, but I haven’t forgotten about this blog, I’m currently thinking of where I am going to take it content-wise in the future, and if I want to buy it a domain name.

Next up, I am an unschooler. This means, until I started taking community college classes of my own volition, I NEVER went to any kind of school, at any time in my life.

There are of course, some unschoolers who have been to school and quit, but I have the good fortune of parents that didn’t want to send me to school at all, so I haven’t had to waste a single second of my childhood in one of those dumps.

A theme which will ring loudly in my future writings, is my annoyance at those ignorant idiots who think that unschoolers don’t have a proper education.

I never went to school before college, I almost never even studied anything. I just learned stuff from living.

I taught myself to write, and taught myself a fair bit of math, and a lot about computers. This spring I finished my second semester of college, I got an A in two classes and a B+ in my third. The B+ was a kind of music history, and I got an A in intro to applications programming (Programming with Java), and an A in game design(ok, that was just easy). None of this was all that hard, even writing a research paper, which I had never done before.

Unschooling hasn’t given me any disadvantages in college, or in work. It has however, given my a great deal of happiness, resourcefulness, and amazingly good friends.

March 27, 2009

Yakri’s adventures in college #1 my first essay.

Filed under: College stuff. — Tags: , , , , , , , , , — Yakri @ 7:58 pm

Yakri~

March 10h 2009

English 150

Word count: 1,103

A war for them, fought by us, in response to Broyles essay.

Broyles starts out by establishing his credibility through talking about his experiences as a marine in Vietnam, and how he believes his time in the military helped him despite the fact that he had previously tried to avoid being drafted. He also claims that he has a more personal stake in the war, since his own son is in the military, contrary to many of today’s politicians who do not have any family members in the military, and who have never been in it themselves. Broyles maintains that if it were the children of the people leading the country that were out there in Afghanistan and Iraq right now, then they would pay more attention to solving any problems that might arise. Broyles says the only solution to current military problems is to bring back the draft, because America’s volunteer army can’t fight a long drawn out war. Broyles argues that a volunteer military is not of higher quality than a drafted military. He also disagrees with the people who think the ‘social elites’ will still find ways to avoid the draft. According to Broyles we were able to defeat the Japanese and the Germans during WWII using the draft, so it should still work well today, and according to Broyles the military problems in Vietnam were not caused by the draft. He ends his argument saying that because of what we have learned from the past, we will now be able to instate a fair draft, and if the war is worth fighting, all American’s should have to fight it. I believe that while Broyles makes some good points, reinstating the draft would do a great deal more harm than good.

Reinstating the draft would greatly reduce the morale in both the military and in the country at large; additionally it could lower the overall quality of the military. A fair draft would require both a lowering of standards and a reduction in the amount of time soldiers receive in training, since a drafted conscription would last 2 years, and currently 4 years are required to allow for a full year of training. However, even if the standards for the military were not lowered, the draft would not be fair, as people could avoid being drafted by: gaining weight, doing drugs, committing crimes, placing too low on test scores and a variety of other things. On the other hand, if standards were lowered to achieve the goal of a fair draft, you would be letting in some individuals who are: drug users, criminals, unable to pass current military tests, or who are overweight, and so on. That would be very detrimental to the overall fighting capability of the military, but more than just that, the effect on morale from having these kinds of people in the military would be significant. Some people try to argue that there are already soldiers in the military that are not happy to be there, and this is true, however these soldiers currently make up the minority and they are still there by choice. With the draft, you would likely see that reversed, you might have a couple of people who want to fight for their country and are happy to be forced into it, but most will begrudge being there. In addition, since it was not their choice to be there, they will begin to resent the government and military for their situation.

Broyles uses World War II as an example of the draft working well, however I think this is a bit of a misrepresentation. Broyles makes it sound like we won WWII because of the draft, and while perhaps we couldn’t have won without it; I do not think it’s accurate to say we won because of it. The draft during WWII was instated for reasons of survival; we had no choice but to instate the draft, because there was no other way to get an army large enough to fight a war of that size. We didn’t beat the Germans or the Japanese because of the draft either. We beat the Germans, for example, because we could build tanks so fast, and supply them so well, that the German troops effectively ran out of fuel and ammo to kill us with. In the case of our fight against the Japanese, one of the largest deciding factors were the aircraft carriers. Quite simply, they were what was needed to win the war and we had more of them, a lot more of them. Of course, there is more to it than that, but in simple terms WWII was won with economic power. The draft in WWII was not an advantage, simply a necessity.

The draft should not be instated for purely, or even partly political reasons. Two of Broyle’s reasons for bringing back the draft are: firstly, to get people from the higher ranks of society such as politicians and their relatives into the military, and secondly, that the draft would be a true test of public support for the war. I do not believe these to constitute valid reasons for taking such a drastic step as to bring back the draft. The trouble with reinstating the draft to get people from high society into the military is that they make up the vast minority of this country, so the vast majority of the people that you will be forcing into the military will come from middle and low class society. The repercussions of such action would be wide spread, however they will effect the rich and the powerful least of all. Then the problem with instating the draft to see if the public supports your handling of the war, is that you’re doing something that could badly damage the US military, and thus cause a variety of negative side effects in the war, just to see if the public likes how your handling the war.

Through reading Broyles essay and writing my own there are a few conclusions to which I have come. The draft would destroy morale, currently we have a well trained military filled with people who choose to be there, and a country with the greatest level of respect for their troops, however the draft would change this drastically. In World War II the draft was enacted because it had to be, otherwise we faced destruction as a nation, but there is no such imminent threat to our nation now, at least not from military forces. Broyle’s would like the draft to be instated to get the politicians more involved, but I think that the wide reaching negative ramifications to the rest of the population do not justify instating the draft for political reasons. Lastly I believe it would be reprehensible to our country to reinstate the draft, because of the devastation it would wreak both psychically and mentally on our military and nation

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