Charter Schools II: Choice & Quality

Embed from Getty Images In the previous essay on charter schools I considered the monopoly argument in their favor. On this view, charter schools break the state’s harmful monopoly on education and
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Embed from Getty Images In the previous essay on charter schools I considered the monopoly argument in their favor. On this view, charter schools break the state’s harmful monopoly on education and this is a good thing. It is worth noting, again, that the state does not have a monopoly on education (there are private, non-charter schools). Instead, the state schools often have a monopoly on public money and charter schools break this monopoly by receiving public money. This, it is argued by charter school proponents, allows for more choice. They are quite right. But not all choices are good choices. Without charter schools, people face rather limited alternatives to the public-school system. One is home schooling. While this does appeal to some people, it does limit the educational experience and requires a great deal of the parent(s). Another is attending a private school. While these schools can provide excellent education, they can very expensive. As such, they are an option. . .

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News source: Talking Philosophy

<strong>Saul Friedl&auml;nder</strong>, born in Prague four months before Hitler came to power, has wrung illumination and self-knowledge from a dark history&nbsp;

Saul Friedl&amp;auml;nder, born in Prague four months before Hitler came to power, has wrung illumination and self-knowledge from a dark
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Saul Friedländer, born in Prague four months before Hitler came to power, has wrung illumination and self-knowledge from a dark history 

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News source: Arts & Letters Daily

With three hearts pumping blue-green blood, eight tentacles, kaleidoscopic skin, and half a billion neurons, the <strong>octopus</strong> is a distinct experiment in the evolution of the mind

With three hearts pumping blue-green blood, eight tentacles, kaleidoscopic skin, and half a billion neurons, the octopus is a distinct experiment in the evolution of the
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With three hearts pumping blue-green blood, eight tentacles, kaleidoscopic skin, and half a billion neurons, the octopus is a distinct experiment in the evolution of the mind

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News source: Arts & Letters Daily

<strong>Derek Parfit</strong> was a philosopher of unusual novelty and insight. His gift rested on his indifference to individuals, relationships, and institutions

Derek Parfit was a philosopher of unusual novelty and insight. His gift rested on his indifference to individuals, relationships, and
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Derek Parfit was a philosopher of unusual novelty and insight. His gift rested on his indifference to individuals, relationships, and institutions

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News source: Arts & Letters Daily

The language of chess

The dust has barely settled on last year’s world chess championship match in New York: Norway’s Magnus Carlson defended his title again the tough challenger Sergei Karjakin, in a close match. The
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The dust has barely settled on last year’s World Chess Championship match in New York: Norway’s Magnus Carlsen defended his title against the tough challenger Sergei Karjakin, in a close match. The event got me thinking about the language of chess strategy, and tactics, and the curious history, and multicultural origins of chess terminology. Chess has been around for centuries and The Game and Playe of the Chesse was among the first books printed in English by William Caxton in the late fifteenth century. It is not actually a book of chess instruction in the modern sense. Rather it is an allegory of medieval society with a king, queen, bishops, knights, and rooks, and with pawns representing various trades. Each chess piece has its own moral code, together representing a kingdom bound by duty rather than kinship. Caxton used a French translation as the basis for his book and the English word chess is a borrowing from the Middle French échecs. But the story is older and more. . .

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News source: Linguistics – OUPblog

2016 in review

(Past annual reviews: 2015,&amp;nbsp;2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006, 2005, and 2004.)Applied Ethics* The Instrumental value of one vote&amp;nbsp;-- can be much higher than many
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(Past annual reviews: 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006, 2005, and 2004.)Applied Ethics* The Instrumental value of one vote -- can be much higher than many philosophers seem to assume.* Pets and Slavery -- explains why domesticated animals are not inherently wronged by their guardians, or morally akin to "slaves".* Philanthropic focus vs abandonment -- diagnoses some bad reasoning from the CEO of Oxfam, who mistakenly thinks there are reasons of fairness to help people inefficiently.* Effective Altruism, Radical Politics, and Radical Philanthropy -- Is EA insufficiently 'radical'?  Or excessively so?* How bad? -- a rough first step towards moral prioritization.* Opposite Day: "Charity begins at home" edition -- Don't let my evil twin Ricardo convince you!Normative Ethics* Illustrating the Paradox of Deontology -- may you murder once to save five loved ones from being murdered? (If not, why not?)* Is. . .

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News source: Philosophy, et cetera

<strong>Success in parenthood</strong> is uncertain, and apparent only after a lifetime of battle and worry. Is this why so many fathers of philosophy remained childless?

Success in parenthood is uncertain, and apparent only after a lifetime of battle and worry. Is this why so many fathers of philosophy remained
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Success in parenthood is uncertain, and apparent only after a lifetime of battle and worry. Is this why so many fathers of philosophy remained childless?

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News source: Arts & Letters Daily

His name is synonymous with seduction and charm. His life was a nonstop, transcontinental parade of fornication. <strong>Why was Casanova so horny</strong>?

His name is synonymous with seduction and charm. His life was a nonstop, transcontinental parade of fornication. Why was Casanova so
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His name is synonymous with seduction and charm. His life was a nonstop, transcontinental parade of fornication. Why was Casanova so horny?

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News source: Arts & Letters Daily

Byron ate egg yolks; Whitman paced for miles and miles; Plath swallowed one pill after another: Why are <strong>poets so weird about sleep</strong>?

Byron ate egg yolks; Whitman paced for miles and miles; Plath swallowed one pill after another: Why are poets so weird about
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Byron ate egg yolks; Whitman paced for miles and miles; Plath swallowed one pill after another: Why are poets so weird about sleep?

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News source: Arts & Letters Daily

Political Representation

[Revised entry by Suzanne Dovi on January 6, 2017. Changes to: Main text, Bibliography] The concept of political representation is misleadingly simple: everyone seems to know what it is, yet few
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[Revised entry by Suzanne Dovi on January 6, 2017. Changes to: Main text, Bibliography] The concept of political representation is misleadingly simple: everyone seems to know what it is, yet few can agree on any particular definition. In fact, there is an extensive literature that offers many different definitions of this elusive concept. [Classic treatments of the concept of political representations within this literature include Pennock and Chapman 1968; Pitkin, 1967 and Schwartz, 1988.] Hanna Pitkin (1967) provides, perhaps, one of the most straightforward...

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News source: Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy