Friday, April 28, 2006

Chemical Engineering Departments, Greece

There is a lot of discussion in Greece about assesment in higher education. "Greek reality" again is the excuse for not having any form of quality assesment in greek higher education institutions.
A very interesting counterexample is given by Themis Lazarides that referes to Chemical Engineering Departments in Greece. (

This could be a good starting point for a more general discussion and presentation of data that will reveal many aspects of greek higher education.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Protesters force Bush to move Stanford meeting

Contoliza Rice should not complain about her unfriendly welcome in Athens. Her Institution (Stanford), was much more hostile to her boss. At least, in Athens she did not have to change the venue of any of her meetings! ...continues here!

Berkeley Churches

Someone told me that Berkeley has the largest concentration of churches in the US! It sounds so strange. Does anyone have some facts?

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Rich people, poor people

A lot of wealth for the wealthy in the UK. Any data for the other end of the scale?

The wealth of the country's richest 1,000 is also at record high levels, now standing at £300.9 billion, up from £249.6 billion last year. This represents one of the biggest year-on-year increases since the Rich List was first published in 1989. Researchers also found a 36% rise in the amount donated to charity by the 30 most generous benefactors. More than £453 million was given away this year, compared with £333 million in 2005.

NYT, Athenian Democracy and Deliberative Polling

The NYT magazine has an article today (below) on democracy, making a reference to the athenian demokratia and to its possible revival today by deliberative polling.
Actually, the athenian democracy model will be trying in Athens, 2500 years later! It will be used by PASOK, the socialist party of Greece, to select its candidate for the municipal elections (next fall), in the "olympic" municipality of Marousi. ...continues here!

Caught: Goldman and Merrill 'insiders'

Enron did not teach lessons...

Last week the authorities claimed to have solved the mystery of the smelly trainer trades when they arrested employees at two of the world’s most prestigious banks. They said it was one of the most extraordinary insider-dealing scams of all time. As well as high-flying bankers and Croatian cleaners, the scam involved forklift-truck drivers from Wisconsin, an exotic dancer from New York and even a film script written by one of the alleged perpetrators that spookily parallels the charges against them.“This is one of the most brazen and pervasive insider-trading cases we have ever seen,” said David Markowitz at the New York office of the Securities and exchange Commission (SEC). In court papers the SEC and FBI claim that Anticevic’s nephew, David Pajcin, a 29-year-old former Goldman Sachs bond research analyst, was the person really responsible for her sudden fortune. ...continues here!

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Trust schools in the UK

The issue is becoming more and more controversial.

...These questions have been prompted by the unexpected, and most unusual turn of events that have spread from the cash-for-honours inquiry into the sponsorship of city academies.
The shock waves are still rippling out through England's education system after the arrest of Des Smith, the head teacher and former member of the Specialist Schools and Academies Trust.

Friday, April 21, 2006

Marijuana For Medical Use Turned Down By FDA

Is this progress?

According to an FDA statement, marijuana is listed in Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act (CSA) - this is the most restrictive schedule. The FDA agrees with this Schedule I listing, as does the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA).
The three criteria for placement in Schedule I, says the FDA (21 U.S.C 812b 1) are currently met by Marijuana. It listed as the three main reasons against the use of marijuana for medical use as:
1. It has a high potential for abuse
2. It has no currently accepted medical use in treatment in the USA
3. It has a lack of accepted safety for use under medical supervision

...continues here!

Cardinal backs limited condom use

Changes in the Catholic Churh too?

One of the Roman Catholic Church's most distinguished cardinals has publicly backed the use of condoms among married couples to prevent Aids transmission. Cardinal Carlo Maria Martini said that in couples where one had HIV/Aids, which could pass to the partner, the use of condoms was "a lesser evil". ...continues here!

Thursday, April 20, 2006

First Online High School

This is a tremendous developmnet in education.

A $3.3 million gift from the Malone Family Foundation of Englewood, Colo., will fund the first online high school for gifted students.
Developed by Stanford University's Education Program for Gifted Youth (EPGY), the Online High School will be a three-year, fully accredited, diploma-granting high school. The program will begin accepting student applications this spring and is scheduled to begin classes in the fall. Information about the application process and the courses will be available online beginning April 25 at
...continues here!

Gay Rabbis?

Is Stanford that conservative after all?

ARNOLD M. EISEN, the newly named chancellor of the Jewish Theological Seminary at Stanford, the flagship rabbinical school in Conservative Judaism, told the New York Times April 11 that it is time for the movement to lift its ban on gay rabbis.