The Dark Side of America is Ruled by Fear and Hate

The U.S. House of Representatives recently voted 289 to 136 to block Syrian refugees from entering the United States, because of the ISIS terrorist attack in Paris that killed 129 people and wounded many more. – The Telegraph

What about innocent until proven guilty?  The concept that we are innocent until proven guilty is not codified in the text of the Constitution. Instead, it has been part of the history of English jurisprudence for so long that it is considered common law. The concept is embodied in several provisions of the Constitution, however, such as the right to remain silent and the right to a jury. If you are interested to learn more about things that are not in the U.S. Constitution, visit

Anyway, this post is not about the Constitution. It’s about the recent tragedy in Paris and how too many Americans are reacting to it by wanting to reject Syrian and/or Iraqi refugees who are fleeing the brutal tyranny of ISIS and/or fundamentalist Islam.

For instance, Robert Reich reported that “Donald Trump said on Thursday that he would not rule out implementing a database system tracking all Muslims in the United States—including Americans of Muslim faith. … While Donald Trump is mimicking Nazi Germany, his fellow Republicans are trying to outdo him. Jeb Bush and Ted Cruz want to apply a religious test to refugees. Marco Rubio wants to ‘close down any place where radicals are being inspired,’ including mosques. This is spinning out of control, and it’s time to draw the line.”

Let’s not forget that the United States has its own breed of fundamentalists who call themselves Christians. Then there are the disturbed Americans who go on killing sprees in schools, theaters and shopping malls.  If you want to discover how many, click List of school shootings in the United States or read The Guardian’s Oregon college shooting is 994th mass gun attack in US in three years

When these mass shootings take place in the United States, depending on the body count, there will be the usual cry for more gun control, but did you know that Paris was a gun free zone with one of the toughest gun control laws in the world?

In addition, the number of hate groups operating in the United States continued to rise in 2008 and has grown by 54 percent since 2000 — an increase fueled by immigration fears, a failing economy, and the successful campaign of Barack Obama, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC). The SPLC identified 926 hate groups active in 2008, up more than four percent from the 888 groups in 2007 and far above the 602 groups documented in 2000.

“Many white supremacist groups are going more mainstream,” said Jack Levin, a Northeastern University criminologist who studies hate crime. “They are eliminating the sheets and armbands. … The groups realize if they want to be attractive to middle-class types, they need to look middle-class.” Levin estimated fewer than 50,000 people are members of white supremacist groups, but he says their influence is growing with a more sophisticated approach.” –

And then there’s this from the New York Times: Homegrown Extremists Tied to Deadlier Toll Than Jihadists in U.S. Since 9/11 (published June 25, 2015)

“Law enforcement agencies around the country have told us the threat from Muslim extremists is not as great as the threat from right-wing extremists,” said Dr. Kurzman, whose study is to be published by the Triangle Center on Terrorism and Homeland Security and the Police Executive Research Forum. …

“The contentious question of biased perceptions of terrorist threats dates back at least two decades, to the truck bombing that tore apart the federal building in Oklahoma City in April 1995. Some early news media speculation about the attack assumed that it had been carried out by Muslim militants. The arrest of Timothy J. McVeigh, an antigovernment extremist, quickly put an end to such theories.

“The bombing, which killed 168 people, including 19 children, remains the second-deadliest terrorist attack in American history, though its toll was dwarfed by the roughly 3,000 killed on Sept 11.”

I do not want to see the United States repeat the horrible mistakes made to the Chinese during the era of the Chinese Exclusion Act (1882 – 1943), or the relocation of Japanese-Americans into internment camps after Pearl Harbor and during World War II, or the witch hunts of alleged Communists during the McCarthy era in the 1950s. –

When we start down the road of fear and/or hate, then we are not all that different from what the Nazi’s did with their concentration camps during World War II, or the ethnic cleansing during the Bosnian war, and so many other examples throughout history.

“Let’s not forget that Malala Yousafzai is a Muslim. We can NOT paint all Muslims with the same brush that defines ISIS.

“Yousafzai’s story reveals the everyday details of a battle that millions of Muslim girls around the world are fighting every day. It is a in which the threats of violent extremists must be borne with courage, even when they do not yield fame or notoriety; in which there are fathers, brothers and husbands who support women’s struggle; in which faith strengthens resistance and culture undergirds identity. Their battles for emancipation have authentic vocabularies all their own that communicate paths for empowerment that at some times intersect and at others veer from the paths of their traditions. Their victories lie not in renunciation but in resistance and reclamation of faith, culture and public space.” –


Lloyd Lofthouse is a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran,
who taught in the public schools for thirty years (1975 – 2005).

Promotion Graphic OCT 2015

Where to Buy

Lofthouse’s first novel was the award winning historical fiction My Splendid Concubine [3rd edition]. His second novel was the award winning thriller Running with the Enemy followed by his award winning memoir Crazy is Normal.

To follow this Blog via E-mail see upper left-hand column and click on “FOLLOW!”

Review of Journeys: Are @KIPP charter schools pathological?

Lloyd Lofthouse:

Will the real KIPP charter schools please stand up and reveal the autocratic horrors and abuse happening to OUR children.

Originally posted on Cloaking Inequity:

Are @KIPP charter schools pathological? Jim Horn et al. will soon publish a new book entitled Work Hard, Be Hard: Journeys Through “No Excuses” Teaching. The following is a review based on the advance copy that I received.

jkh_mfa_3-12-11__3Jim Horn et al. have collected important perspectives from current and former Knowledge is Power Program (KIPP) teachers in a new book entitled Work Hard, Be Hard: Journeys Through “No Excuses” Teaching. The KIPP corporate charter school chain of schools has received hundreds of millions of dollars in corporate, local, foundation, state and federal dollars since its inception in 1994. The KIPP charter chain was started by Mike Feinberg (SeeFrank Convo with KIPP’s Mike Feinberg: Do you callBS?)and Dave Levin, Teach For America alums. They have found ready allies in the corporate education reform movement— whose policies are focused on private control of public schools.

Since the KIPP…

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The Dangers of Halloween Addiction – Who Does This to Children?

While I enjoy seeing kids and adults in cute Halloween costumes, I abhor the TREAT factor of Halloween. As an ignorant child and teen, I went trick or treating, wore costumes and went to Halloween parties. And as a teacher, I dressed in a suit and wore a Richard Nixon mask more than once on Halloween.

However, in the early 1980s I changed my lifestyle drastically and became health conscious and that was the last time I gave out sugar-laced treats. Gasp, I even stopped drinking Coke, Pepsi, 7-Up, and even Dr. Pepper, my childhood favorite.

Instead of that free candy, I gave out small boxes of organic raisins at Halloween until a neighbor accused me of being cheap because I didn’t hand out treats drenched with processed sugar. I’m talking about those bulky bags full of miniature Snickers, Twix, M&M’s, Juicy Fruits, Tootsie Rolls, Oh Henry!, Butterfinger, Starbursts, Hershey’s, Reese’s, Skittles, Kit Kat, Milky Way, etc.

Thirty years of teaching kids that consumed too much sugar is another reason why I stopped handing out popular treats on Halloween, because I witnessed what too much sugar did to my students—too much hyper energy, then lethargy leading to inattention and mood swings. It’s a real challenge to teach a child or teen who drank a sixty-ounce Pepsi for lunch and comes to class with glazed eyes, and in today’s Bill Gates supported high stakes test world of Common Core education that ranks and punishes teachers and closes public schools, sugar should be enemy number two behind Bill Gates and his evil cronies.

In fact, many children and teens of today even hate drinking water because it isn’t sweet, and that is because they are addicted to the sugar. reported, “Research supports the theory that high-fat/high-sugar foods stimulate the brain in the same way that drugs do,” [neuroscientist Joseph] Schroeder said. “It may explain why some people can’t resist these foods despite the fact that they know they are bad for them.”

Most if not all of us know that heroin and methamphetamine are the most addictive illegal drugs, followed by cocaine, pentobarbital, nicotine, alcohol and caffeine, but most do not know that sugar should be on that list too. It’s addictive and destructive. When the researchers “used immunohistochemistry to measure the expression of a protein called c-Fos, a marker of neuronal activation, in the nucleus accumbens, or the brain’s ‘pleasure center,’” they found that “the Oreos activated significantly more neurons than cocaine or morphine.”

In addition to being more addictive than cocaine or morphine, how destructive is sugar?

“The Pompeiians have healthy teeth, only in the rarest cases marred by decay: this is thanks to a mainly vegetarian diet and to an almost total lack of sugar in the diet, explained dental surgeon Elisa Vanacore.”

According to a recent report from the Centers for Disease Control, kids are getting way too much added sugar in their diets and that could raise their risk for obesity and chronic diseases. “Consuming added sugars has been tied to an increased risk for heart disease among adolescents and cholesterol problems,” according to the CDC.

“A large epidemiological study suggest sugar may also have a direct, independent link to diabetes. Researchers from the Stanford University School of Medicine, the University of California-Berkeley and the University of California-San Francisco examined data on sugar availability and diabetes rates from 175 countries over the past decade. After accounting for obesity and a large array of other factors, the researchers found that increased sugar in a population’s food supply was linked to higher diabetes rates, independent of obesity rates.” –

If you still doubt, to discover how horrible processed sugar is, I suggest reading this piece on where you will learn how dangerous diabetes can be.

Diabetes affects all parts of the body, particularly adult onset diabetes. If left uncontrolled, it becomes a killer, which destroyed every organ in the body—including the heart and brain. According to the American Diabetes Association, 25.8 million adults and children in the United States have diabetes and another 79 million are pre diabetic.

And did you know that the leading five companies that make and sell candy and soda employ more than 40,000 workers and have annual revenues of $40 billion. This industry spends millions of dollars on lobbying in Washington DC to stop any proposed consumer protection regulations. Source: IBIS and Sunlight

Now you know why I stopped celebrating trick or treat, because all of those free treats are not really free—they comes with a horrible price. Maybe it is time to take the sugar out of Halloween and just keep the costumes.


Lloyd Lofthouse is a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran,
who taught in the public schools for thirty years (1975 – 2005).

99 cents Promotion Graphic OCT 2015

Where to Buy

Lofthouse’s first novel was the award winning historical fiction My Splendid Concubine [3rd edition]. His second novel was the award winning thriller Running with the Enemy followed by his award winning memoir Crazy is Normal.

To follow this Blog via E-mail see upper left-hand column and click on “FOLLOW!”

Ask Eva Moskowitz if it is okay to abuse and exploit children says, “One of the most deplorable developments in recent years has been the increasing use of young children as soldiers. In one sense, this is not really new. For centuries children have been involved in military campaigns. What is frightening nowadays is the escalation in the use of children as fighters. Recently, in 25 countries, thousands of children under the age of 16 have fought in wars. In 1988 alone, they numbered as many as 200,000.”

The history of exploiting children is long, and child labor reached new extremes during the Industrial Revolution. Children often worked long hours in dangerous factory conditions for very little money. In fact, in 1900 when 40% of the U.S. population lived in poverty and less than 7% of children graduated from high school at age 17/18, eighteen percent of all American workers were under the age of 16. –

Because of this history of exploiting children, in 1938, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed the Fair Labor Standards Act, which included putting limits on many forms of child labor, and in 1949, an amendment to the Fair Labor Standards Act directly prohibited child labor for the first time. – Stop Child

World leaders have also exploited children. From the 1920s onwards, the Nazi Party targeted German youth as a special audience for its propaganda messages. Hitler used his “Hitler Youth” program as a kind of “Boy Scouts” for the training of children to obediently follow him, and to prepare them to become his future soldiers. Hitler also gathered his youth together in large youth rallies that had a strong peer pressure effect in strengthening his grip as an authority figure.

From 1966 – 1976, Mao also used groups of militant university and high school students called the Little Red Guard that were formed into  paramilitary units as part of his Cultural Revolution. These young people often wore green jackets similar to the uniforms of the Chinese army at the time, with red armbands attached to one of the sleeves. They were formed to help party chairman Mao Zedong combat “revisionist” authorities—i.e., those party leaders Mao considered as being insufficiently revolutionary. … Several million Red Guards journeyed to Beijing to meet with Mao in eight massive demonstrations late in 1966, and the total number of Red Guards throughout the country may have reached 11 million at some point. –

How exactly did Mao manage to rally these kids behind his cause? Well, propaganda had a lot to do with it. Posters were everywhere, and many young people also received copies of Mao’s “Little Red Book.” Officially called “Quotations from Chairman Mao Tse-tung,” one of the most printed books in history – only the bible has been printed more.

When one thinks of the Cultural Revolution – or Mao in general – the image that comes to mind is often of young Chinese feverishly waving their little red books in the air, reciting Mao’s quotes word for word. In a drastic move, Mao also had the nation’s schools shut down, calling on the youth of China to mobilize and support his cause.

Hitler Eva Mao

That is why I think Eva Moskowitz has joined the ranks of leaders like Hitler and Mao. What she is doing with the children in her corporate Success Academy Charter schools is no different than what Hitler and Mao did. Eva gathers her youth together in large youth rallies and this has a strong peer pressure effect in strengthening her grip as an authority figure—exactly what Hitler and Mao did.

If you don’t know who Eva is, I suggest you read Eva Moskowitz is Out of Control by Daniel Katz, who asks, “Is Eva Moskowitz running a chain of schools or is she running the lobbying arm for her billionaire backers, who see the expansion of the charter school sector as a means for profit and as a means to break public sector unions?

The New York Times also ran a story about Eva and her autocratic tactics. “In a rare look inside the network, including visits to several schools and interviews with dozens of current and former employees, The New York Times chronicled a system driven by the relentless pursuit of better results, one that can be exhilarating for teachers and students who keep up with its demands and agonizing for those who do not.

“The high-pressure atmosphere at Success leads to substantial teacher turnover, though the precise rate is unclear. According to the latest school report cards, in 2013-14 three Success schools had turnover rates above 50 percent, meaning more than half the teachers from the previous year did not stay. …

“Most of the former teachers interviewed, however, said that they left not because of the workload, but because they disagreed with Success’s approach, which they found punitive. …

“Several former teachers and staff members said that they had also been uncomfortable with Success’s suspension rates.

“At Success Academy Harlem 1, as the original school is now called, 23 percent of the 896 students were suspended for at least one day in 2012-13, the last year for which the state has data. At Public School 149, a school in the same building, 3 percent of students were suspended during that same period. Statewide, the average suspension rate is 4 percent.”

Manipulators like Hitler, Mao and Eva want what they want and fight hard to attain their goals. But the tactics they use are also very effective weapons of power and control.Psychopaths and


Lloyd Lofthouse is a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran,
who taught in the public schools for thirty years (1975 – 2005).

99 Cent Graphic for Promomtion OCT 2015

Where to Buy

Lofthouse’s first novel was the award winning historical fiction My Splendid Concubine [3rd edition]. His second novel was the award winning thriller Running with the Enemy followed by his award winning memoir Crazy is Normal.

To follow this Blog via E-mail see upper left-hand column and click on “FOLLOW!”

Discovering the Real U.S. Prison Pipeline

Originally posted on Crazy Normal - the Classroom Exposé:

I understand that Arne Duncan, the worst Secretary of Education in U.S. history, is talking about the alleged school-to-prison pipeline on Sirius talk radio today (Sunday, October 11, 2015).

For decades there has been a myth that a school-to-prison pipeline exists in the United States, and that the public schools are responsible for the exploding prison population.

This is a lie supported by propaganda paid for by the for-profit, autocratic, often fraudulent and inferior corporate education reform movement.

The U.S. had compulsory public education in every state by 1917, but the Prison Pipeline wasn’t built until the Nixon (1969 – 1974) and then Reagan (1981 – 1989) administrations.

Image for Prison and Jail Population from 1920 to 2013

  • In 1920, the population of the U.S. was 106 million with about 100 thousand in prison and jail (0.09% of the population).
  • In 1940, the population had reached 132 million with about 250,000 in prison and jail (0.18%)
  • In 1960, the…

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Seeing “The Martian” Two Times in Three Days

The title of this post could have been “Self-published author hits it big thanks to Mars.”

I have seen this film twice and plan to see it again soon a third time, and when the DVD comes out, I’ll buy the film and also watch it at home. The first time I saw the film was on Friday, October 2, and the second time was Sunday, October 4, and I enjoyed it even more the second time around.

Next, I plan to buy the book and read it. Hopefully, I’ll find it on CDs and listen to the audio version instead.

This is the first time in my 70 years of life that I’ve seen the same film twice at a theater. I have seen “The Lord of the Rings” three times but only once in a theater. The other two times, I watched it at home. I’ve also watched “Avatar” once in a theater and then again at home after I bought the DVD.

I’m an avid reader, who has read “The Lord of the Rings” three times and the entire Horatio Hornblower Series by C. S. Forester two times, and I am also a film addict who is easily entertained, but this is the first film that I want to watch repeatedly.

“The Martian” started out as a 2011 science fiction novel and the first published novel by American author Andy Weir. It was originally self-published in 2011. In March 2013, Twentieth Century Fox optioned the film rights.

Then in 2014, Crown Publishing purchased the rights to the novel and re-released it the same year. The story follows an American astronaut, Mark Watney, as he becomes stranded alone on Mars and must improvise in order to survive.  The Martian, a film adaptation, was directed by Ridley Scott and starring Matt Damon and Jessica Chastain.

Since I’ve seen the film and haven’t read the book—YET—I’m going to copy a few pull quotes from reviews that I agree with.

“A great movie! It’s exciting, emotional, it has great storytelling and most of all, it’s surprising!” –Edgardo Resendiz, Reforma

“This is science fiction for sophisticated audiences and, as such, a fulfilling and satisfying experience.” – James Berardinelli, Reel Views

“What’s so stirring about the film is that, before and after everything else, it truly is about being human” – Joe Morgenstern, Wall Street Journal

“The Martian is fueled by charm, curiosity and the scientific method.” – Chris Vognar, Dallas Morning News

The Martian should do far more than just make Fox a ton of money; it could conceivably rekindle interest in the space program and inspire a new generation of future astronauts.” – Peter Debruge, Variety

“Superior to both Christopher Nolan’s Interstellar and (by a smaller margin) Alfonso Cuaron’s Gravity,” – Matt Brunson, Creative Loafing

“Easily one of the most engrossing, enthralling and entertaining films of the year … In essence, The Martian is the antithesis of a superhero movie; instead of one man trying to save the world, it’s about the world trying to save one man.” – Jim Schembri, 3AW

I’d share my favorite scenes but there were too many and that would more than double the word count of this post. It is often rare for media critics and the audience to agree on anything, but on Rotten Tomatoes, “The Martian” has an approval rating of 93% for all of the critics and 94% for the audience. Heck, even a New York Times critic liked the film, and that’s a rare event for any film or book.

Manohla Dargis, the NY Times critic, starts out with, “A space western and a blissed-out cosmic high, ‘The Martian’ stars Matt Damon as an American astronaut who, like a latter-day Robinson Crusoe, learns to survive on his own island of despair. At once epic and intimate, it involves a dual journey into outer and inner space, a trip that takes you into that immensity called the universe and deep into the equally vast landscape of a single consciousness.”


Lloyd Lofthouse is a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran,
who taught in the public schools for thirty years (1975 – 2005).

Promotion Graphic OCT 2015

Where to Buy

Lofthouse’s first novel was the award winning historical fiction My Splendid Concubine [3rd edition]. His second novel was the award winning thriller Running with the Enemy followed by his award winning memoir Crazy is Normal.

To follow this Blog via E-mail see upper left-hand column and click on “FOLLOW!”