NYT: Tweet lazy students to get them to apply to college


Researchers have discovered a shocking disparity:

A child born into a poor family has only a 9 percent chance of getting a college degree, but the odds are 54 percent for a child in a high-income family.

Is this really true? Who knows? But don't worry; they found a solution: text messages. No, really.

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While they were graduate students at Harvard, two young professors designed and tested a program to help students stick to their college plans. Benjamin L. Castleman, now at the University of Virginia, and Lindsay C. Page, at the University of Pittsburgh, set up a system of automatic, personalized text messages that reminded high school students about their college deadlines. The texts included links to required forms and live counselors.

The result? Students who received the texts were more likely to enroll in college: 70 percent, compared with 63 percent of those who did not get them. Seven percentage points is a big increase in this field, similar to the gains produced by scholarships that cost thousands of dollars. Yet this program cost only $7 per student.

How silly is this? Students need to be tweeted to fill out their financial aid forms, or else they drop out. And why do they need to be reminded?

At every step of the way, low-income students are more likely to stumble on the path to higher education. Even the summer after high school is a perilous time, with 20 percent of those who plan to attend college not actually enrolling -- a phenomenon known as “summer melt.” Bureaucratic barriers, like the labyrinthine process of applying for financial aid, explain some of the drop-off


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A Tale of Two Senators (1 D, 1 R)


The Associated Press (or the Associated Depressed, as Mark Levin aptly calls it) has an article talking about the fact that with the Republicans taking control of the Senate, Democratic Pennsylvania Senator Bob Casey will lose influence while Republican Senator Pat Toomey will gain some. The article provides an interesting comparison and contrast between the two.
CONTINUE READING

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Will taxing big banks really help the middle class?


In President Obama's State of the Union address he will reportedly call for a tax on banks and use the revenue from that and a capital gains tax increase to fund tax breaks for the "middle class". The tax would not just be on any banks but only big banks, who, by virtue of being successful, are viewed by the Left as far more nefarious than their smaller counterparts. Specifically, the banks it would apply to must have at least $50 billion in assets. Since the left has no idea how to create wealth, they only way they can give it away is to redistribute it.
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Not From The Onion: Eric Cantor Lectures On How to Win Elections


The Virginia Conservative Network had a special guest speaker this weekend: former Congressman Eric Cantor! Cantor, the only House Majority Leader in US history who was defeated by a virtually unfunded, no-name challenger (by 10 percentage points!), lectured on "How to Win Elections".
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Let's All Hope Ted Cruz Zeros Out the NASA Budget


Senator Ted Cruz is going to chair the Senate Transportation Committee's Subcommittee on Space, Science and Competitiveness. (What does competitiveness have to do with outer space? There's mission creep already, just in the title of the subcomittee! However, it's very symbolic, because NASA also suffers from mission creep.)
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WashPost opinion writer says we can't fight radical islam


Fareed Zakaria wrote an op-ed in the Washington Post entitled, "US Intervention is Not the Answer" regarding our fight against radical Islam. At least, I think he wrote the article; given all the times he's been accused of plagiarism, it's hard to be sure.
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Good news! GOP Govs to Be 'Pragmatic,' says NYT


The New York Times breathlessly reports that Republican governors are promising to be pragmatic. Pragmatic means "dealing with things based on practical rather than theoretical considerations," according to Google definitions. That's good! Or is it?
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West Virginia decides to teach global warming propaganda to kids


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Why 26 Republicans don't want DREAMers to wake up


The House of Representatives took a symbolic vote to cancel President Obama's illegal amnesty for illegal aliens. (Yes, I was compelled to awkwardly use the word "illegal" twice in one sentence – once to describe those who cross the border without permission and demand "rights," and a second time to describe how a president asserted powers he didn't have, like a tinpot Latin American dictator with access to better golf courses.)
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The New York Times has a new boyfriend, and his name is Jeb


The media have two great loves in life: liberals, and conservative who "grow" and become liberals. Jeb Bush, who clearly falls in the latter category, was the subject of a fawning piece in the New York Times. The article starts with a big photo of Jeb doing charity work a month ago (that's big news now!) and talks about Jeb's "progression" from "headbanging" conservatism to a "more nuanced approach." Yes, Bush calls conservatism "headbanging," which tells you in just one word what he thinks of conservatism.
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