FAIL: Wildflower School Anti-frackers vandalize park trees with political anti-fracking message

From the Chico Enterprise-Record:

Wildflower students linked to graffiti in Bidwell Park

Students from Wildflower Open Classroom printed this message on a tree in lower Bidwell Park as part of activism related to fracking. Considered vandalism by the city parks department, it was reported Tuesday morning and immediately removed by city crews. Source: Chico Enterprise Record

Students from Wildflower Open Classroom printed this message on a tree in lower Bidwell Park as part of activism related to fracking. Considered vandalism by the city parks department, it was reported Tuesday morning and immediately removed by city crews. Source: Chico Enterprise Record

Recent graffiti in Bidwell Park was at the hands of students from a Chico charter school as part of a lesson on civic engagement and activism.

Seventh- and eighth-graders at Wildflower Open Classroom on Cohasset Road have been involved with an anti-fracking campaign and are among those planning to take part in a rally in Oakland on Saturday. On Monday, students and some staff members vandalized parts of lower park with anti-fracking messages and advertisements for the weekend rally.

School site director Tom Hicks said Thursday that the vandalism was an unfortunate error in judgment related to the middle school students’ studies in civic engagement and activism. Earlier in the year, they selected fracking as a topic and became engaged with the issue.

After research into ways to put their ideas in motion, students decided to use sidewalk chalk and stencils to get their message out, including making their own biodegradable chalk. The activity in the park took place after school Monday with students and staff.

“Unfortunately there was some miscommunication and then error in judgment on our behalf by doing this in the park,” Hicks said. “At this point we are working with the parks department to rectify the situation and making every effort to turn this into a learning experience for everybody involved.”

On the students’ Facebook page, they explain they have decided to take a stand against fracking. They are helping Frack-Free Butte County organize a bus to the March for Real Climate Leadership and raise awareness through a community art project and outreach.

The March for Real Climate Leadership is expected to attract thousands of people to Oakland, where participants will call on Gov. Jerry Brown to ban fracking and push for 100 percent renewable energy. A bus of local people is leaving from Butte College at 7 a.m.

The whole story is here: http://www.chicoer.com/general-news/20150205/wildflower-students-linked-to-graffiti-in-bidwell-park


I don’t buy the explanation, because what is missing is an apology. They knew what they were doing, they knew they’d get press; it’s just another dishonest tactic by people that have no scruples, who are brainwashing the minds of children to push their own political agenda. Shame on Wildflower School.

Given the sort of hateful aberrations we’ve seen in the UK on fracking, as reported by Bishop Hill, I suppose this isn’t surprising behavior. It suggests to me though, that the people that do these things are a slice short of having cheese on their cracker.

I wonder though, if Chico had email addresses for each tree in Bidwell Park, such as what was recently revealed for the City Park trees in Melbourne, Australia, what would the tree write back?

Here is what I think the tree might say in an email in the flavor of one recently sent in Melbourne:


 

To: Wildflower School, Chico

Subject: Vandalism at the hands of your students

“Dear School Administrators,

I’m writing to tell you that I’m shocked that a school that emphasizes Stewardship in it’s guiding principles

Stewardship means…

Being the example you wish to see.  Caring for people, environment (school and Earth), and our community with the joint goal of prosperity and success.  As stewards we provide service to others and the environment by using resources productively and with good intentions.  We teach and practice eco-awareness and connectivity to our planet.

…would purposely and with no regard for me and the people that enjoy my peaceful beauty would abandon such principles for a cheap political trick to get attention.

People that walk through the park want the beauty and tranquility of nature, not graffitti from people with apparently no regard for the trees that provide that experience.

Shame, shame, shame, on you.

Enjoy your day. Yours sincerely, Tree 1441724.”


UPDATE: Predictably, a few foolhardy apologists cry foul in comments saying that because they used “biodegradable chalk” on the trees “they did nothing wrong”.

If it were a PRO fracking message, done with “biodegradeable chalk”, those same people would have a COW over it.

Further, they used petroleum based solvent with a freon based propellant spray chalk paint elsewhere to paint political messages like this one:

EP-150209876[1]Vandalism of a public park is simply wrong, no matter what was used to do it, and anyone who says otherwise is doubly wrong to try to defend it.

For those who want to defend this inane action and complain about this article, feel free to be as upset as you wish.

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244 thoughts on “FAIL: Wildflower School Anti-frackers vandalize park trees with political anti-fracking message

      • Pretty amusing that the so-called Russian connection is a Brit Hedge Fund manager.

        Makes sense. Hedge short, then agitate against the companies you short to drive down their share prices. Your fund makes a mitt-full of money.

        reminds me of this other money making scheme:

        The Bloomberg News reported that put options on the airlines surged to the phenomenal high of 285 times their average.
        Over three days before terrorists flattened the World Trade Center and damaged the Pentagon, there was more than 25 times the previous daily average trading in a Morgan Stanley “put” option that makes money when shares fall below $45. Trading in similar AMR and UAL put options, which make money when their stocks fall below $30 apiece, surged to as much as 285 times the average trading up to that time. 6

        When the market reopened after the attack, United Airlines stock fell 42 percent from $30.82 to $17.50 per share, and American Airlines stock fell 39 percent, from $29.70 to $18.00 per share. 7

        An October 19 article in the San Francisco Chronicle reported that the SEC, after a period of silence, had undertaken the unprecedented action of deputizing hundreds of private officials in its investigation:
        The proposed system, which would go into effect immediately, effectively deputizes hundreds, if not thousands, of key players in the private sector.

        In a two-page statement issued to “all securities-related entities” nationwide, the SEC asked companies to designate senior personnel who appreciate “the sensitive nature” of the case and can be relied upon to “exercise appropriate discretion” as “point” people linking government investigators and the industry. 17

        Michael Ruppert, a former LAPD officer, explains the consequences of this action:
        What happens when you deputize someone in a national security or criminal investigation is that you make it illegal for them to disclose publicly what they know. Smart move. In effect, they become government agents and are controlled by government regulations rather than their own conscience. In fact, they can be thrown in jail without a hearing if they talk publicly. I have seen this implied threat time and again with federal investigations, intelligence agents, and even members of the United States Congress who are bound so tightly by secrecy oaths and agreements that they are not even able to disclose criminal activities inside the government for fear of incarceration. 18

    • Gosh, I didn’t realize there was fracking activity planned in Butte County. Who knew there was shale deposits there?

      • Brian, there are 0 planned tracking of wells in Butte county. There are only 19 active gas wells at present and no producing oil wells (http://www.drillingedge.com/california/butte-county). There are none in the Chico vicinity. In 2014 they produced only 27.7 MCF of natural gas. Butte County is a very minor player in the petroleum industry.
        The anti fracking lobby are using this as a trial balloon in California. There is relatively little capitol investment for natural gas in butte county to counter them (few jobs dependent on the industry). There is a liberal base with many radical elements and a sympathetic press in Chico, Ca.. Apparently the state educational system is allied with the movement as well. IF successful, the movement will extend to other counties in California.

        The anti fracking trolls will definitely cover WUWT since Anthony Watts lives in Chico, CA. The trolls will not just display ad hominem attacks against pro-fracking interests, but also vulgar tactics that appear to be pro fracking. The latter will be referenced in the future to characterize the ‘pro fracking” element as similar to “Neanderthal racists”. As examples look at the comments of Christopher Piano, Duster? and others.

    • In our day we used to spray paint the school. no one in their right mind would have spray painted a park. what the hell are they teaching kids these days??

  1. I’m afraid I don’t understand the US school system. Is this the work of the junior or the senior classes?

    They seem to be learning how to antagonise and destroy in pursuit of political aims. Presumably the undergraduates do Jihad and terrorism?

    • In the US, High School is grades 9 through 12. These were 7th and 8th grades, what are called either Middle School or Junior High School. Roughly 13 and 14 years old.

    • The US public schools have been hijacked by the leftist indoctrination of socialist teachings. The apologists attitude of self esteem building narcissism.

    • “They were saving the natural environment by painting over it.”

      Old Gallagher joke.
      “They say that cities are ruining the environment. That’s not true. It’s the farmers. They plant the crops that leach nutrients from the soil. Rotate the crops, rotate the nutrients they leach from the soil. Where in the cities they lay down asphalt and parking lots; seal in the nutrients.”

      • +1000 I have seen George Carlin say the same thing in a stand up ;>) Smart men or we would never laugh at the crazy in the world they seen and we did but never bitched about .

  2. Earlier in the year, they selected fracking as a topic and became engaged with the issue.

    In a completely objective and unbiased way, no doubt.

    /s

    • You have to start young, otherwise the indoctrination will have less success. And you have to make sure people don’t ask inconvenient questions like “is this true?” and the most heinous question of all “where is the proof?”

      Where is the outrage for teachers encouraging such behavior?

      • The Outrage was from both my girl’s 20 & 19 who went to university in china as they could not stand the crap here in uni in Can [ Ironik I guess but where they are is pure academic for astrophysics and molecular biology ] I am proud of them A’s all around . :>)

    • “Selected” in Lefty, Dept of Education-speak = “was chosen by their eco-activist teacher/administrator” and his/her friends from Berkeley.

    • Hooray for them. It’s amazing that these kids learned enough chemistry, geology, geophysics, fluid dynamics, thermodynamics, and computer technology; plus the associated applications such as well design, mud engineering, mud-pulse drill bit control/feedback, and ceramic proppant design to make informed judgements on this issue before the end of eighth grade….

  3. Rather than turning it into a ‘learning experience’ after the fact, could they not have instead indulged in a ‘thinking experience’ beforehand, and realised that what they proposed to do was idiotic and against their own principles?

    Indeed, they could have a ‘learning experience’ about fracking and find out that it has reduced energy prices, and CO2 emissions, in the USA.

    I suspect that they are in fact having a ‘refusing to look at the facts about fracking’ experience.

    Not a very good example for a school to set, is it?

  4. Unless I’m missing something, the article seems to indicate that they students used biodegradable chalk that they made themselves. If that’s the case, whatever your stand on fracking is, the students did nothing wrong. In fact, if that is the case, then I think it’s actually quite clever.

    • They used chalk on the sidewalks. On the tree, they used spray paint. I can’t think of any biodegradable, water-soluble paint that come in a rattle-can.

      • What they bused is irrelevant. Vandalism is a good means of polarizing an issue and is not likely to gain sympathy.

      • Spray chalk is certainly not “biodegradable.” The school representative mis spoke or mislead the park rangers and press. The spray is advertised to be “temporary” and can be removed with a pressurized power wash. That will work for the sidewalks, however such treatment would most likely injure the trees that were marked, perhaps permanently.
        I think it would be correct for the school officials to provide the labor for clean up under park ranger supervision., The school officials should also be issued a citation and fine for their actions. The students need to be taught that they were miss lead and actually abused by their teachers and school administrators.

      • Spray chalk is certainly not “biodegradable.”
        Also, a major component of chalk is CO2!!!

        quicklime + CO2 = chalk

        So, the students are spray painting global warming in their efforts to raise energy bills for US consumers and manufacturers, to export their future jobs to China. That is one way to make sure you will be living in your parents basements for the rest of your lives!

    • In reply to Christopher Paino
      I call bullshit on your opinion.

      If it were a PRO fracking message, done with “biodegradeable chalk”, those same people would have a COW over it.

      Further, they used petroleum based spray paint elsewhere to paint political messages like this one:

      http://www.chicoer.com/apps/pbcsi.dll/storyimage/NA/20150205/NEWS/150209876/EP/1/1/EP-150209876.jpg&maxh=400&maxw=667

      Vandalism of a public park is simply wrong, and you are doubly wrong to try to defend it.

      Feel free to be as upset as you wish.

      • “If it were a PRO fracking message, done with “biodegradeable chalk”, those same people would have a COW over it.”

        Do you really think so? Maybe. I think they might have a problem with the message, but the fact that they put enough thought into an act of civil disobedience (and where would we be with out that?) to create messages that get their point across in a way that appears hypocritical but really isn’t indicates to me that they would not fall for that one.

        It would not surprise me to find that the idea to use spray-chalk on natural features was used intentionally to fool some into believing that what they did was hypocritical. Spun you right up, didn’t it?

        “Further, they used petroleum based spray paint elsewhere to paint political messages like this one:”

        The caption on that foot-photo and the information in the article concerning the medium used must be wrong then.

        Posters here talk of hubris, but only as if it exists exclusively in those they disagree with.

      • those same people would have a COW over it.” Do you really think so?

        There would be calls for the vandals to be strung up publicly by their balls, and they would most certainly find themselves facing criminal charges. But other than that the reaction would be tame.

    • How does chalk “biodegrade”? As far as I know, chalk is CaCO3. The only degradation I can think of is degradation to CO2.

      Oh, the irony.

      Biodegradable chalk is just another fuzzword.

      • 8-)
        I wondered about “biodegradable” chalk myself. If it’s biodegrable wouldn’t need to have some organic compounds for critters to feed upon?
        Just how did they make it? Chew a bunch of Tums each day and then…..
        Just what are they teaching these kids?

      • It doesn’t biodegrade It washes off in rainstorms and ends up in creeks and rivers and back to the ocean. Check what th BLM gas to say about using chalk in the US Nation Forests. Not allowed. Period. Any trail you mark must be marked with removable flaggiing or they must have approval for erecting permanent signs on national trails.

        Biodegradable ribbons/flagging are approved in some areas.

        I suspect there were teachers and students in this class that haven’t been outside the city much.

        USFS and BLM expect “zero” impact camping and “carry in, carry out. ”

        Now,nothing has ZERO impact. They want to minimize damages.

        I have use lots of chalk over the years any it takes some time to dissipate. BLM approves the use of flour as trail markers as it should be biodegradable. In the desert, these flour markings can last months or even years. Not researched in Wiki or anywhere else. Simple observation.

        Nothing is ever as it seems.

    • Mr. Paino, assume for a moment someone sexually violates your woman, or you, but you cleaned up well. It’s biodegradable! Are you still missing something?

      • Really? Do you think that is a good analogy? Do you believe that spraying some chalk on a dead tree and some rocks is equivalent to sexual assault on a human being? Really?

      • Christopher Palno, you justify violating helpless objects in nature as being less of a crime than attacking a human being which can use the states police and judicial system to fight back? Really? Next you’ll say that killing one of seven billion human beings is more of a crime than killing the last spotted owl, eternally extinguishing an entire species. I think you’re a heartless capitalist right-winger only posing as a treehugging activist.

      • Do you believe that spraying some chalk on a dead tree and some rocks is equivalent to sexual assault on a human being?

        How would you like it if some trees spray painted your dead parents remains? I expect you would be up in arms. But of course trees can’t complain, so it is OK.

    • students used biodegradable chalk that they made themselves. If that’s the case

      It isn’t the case. Take the photo of the tree and blow it up and look at the letters. There is clear evidence of overspray. This was done with spray paint.

      I challenge anyone to create your own biodegradable spray paint and create a delivery mechanism, that can produce anywhere near the consistent quality of spray shown in the picture.

      What you are looking at is the result of a commercial product. There is no way some school kids produced a biodegradable spray paint with that sort of high quality of coverage and consistency.

    • Wrong, Christopher Paino – vandalism sets an example for other values-challenged persons who don’t know the chalk was biodegradable.

      (I also challenge the notion that “biodegradable” does no harm – that’s their theory, it may not be reality depending on how mild the stuff really is and how sensitive the substrate its (noting it is a wet log). I wouldn’t trust home-made chalk from those jerks or their irresponsible teachers.)

      • The park was not vandalized with biodegradable anything. It was spray painted using fossil fuel by-products, whether oil or acrylic based paint. Yes using oil does make Reflubitcans happy as well as anyone else in the world who uses energy or any products with plastic in them. Thank the oil Gods for the little piece of plastic you are typing on. Or did you carve the keys out of wood?

        They made the chalk themselves because an uninspired teacher needed a crafts project for the kids. You must know they were not turning the globalization of labor markets around. Maybe you don’t know, in that case you can get basket weaving kits at your local hobby supply store. Make sure it doesn’t say made in china.

  5. This story is a non-starter. “Wrong-headed middle schoolers vandalize dead wood.” Stop the Presses!

    Posting it makes you look petty. It diminishes the site’s relevance. FAIL!

    • Cataloging the hypocritical actions of so-called “environmentalists” is anything but “FAIL!”

      In fact, it’s YOUR snide post that’s the one that’s filled to the brim with “FAIL!”

      • You folks are as thin-skinned as the alarmists I usually argue with.

        I’m a skeptic. I believe the dangers of AGW are over-stated. I have a high opinion Anthony Watts. This site is invaluable for exposing alarmist propaganda.

        But this story is chump change. Let the alarmists dominate the knee jerk hysterics department.

      • T Montag,
        I believe this park is in Mr. Watt’s own town. This is not simply a topic for discussion. These brats uglied-up his local park. I’d be miffed too.

    • Wrong headed middle schoolers led by left-minded, perfectly aware teachers looking to capitalize on brain washing these students into their own ideology. This is a public school that uses tax payer money. If my faith can’t be in there than neither can theirs, simple as that.

    • I disagree. It demonstrates that they are teaching it is ok to defile public spaces and national treasures because YOU think it is a good idea.

      Perhaps if they all went to court for a day, they might start thinking about the consequences of their actions. They need to be accountable to the community at large. If I sprayed chalk on YOUR house, would that be ok?

    • You are missing the point by about 150 light years.

      Wrong-headed middle schoolers vandalized a park and who knew, parks contain dead wood among many other kinds of natural habitat. If they came to your residence and spray painted the dead wood or vinyl siding of your home, you might see it differently.

      Beyond that if you are protesting to protect the environment, vandalizing the environment will only achieve getting you in the running for the Darwin awards.

    • Don’t pretend you care about WUWT, it makes you look silly.
      The only reason you commented was to drag it down.
      Everybody can see that, don’t insult our (limited) intelligence.

  6. I’m sure the students received a LOT of untrue and bogus information from their mentors about fracking in order to take the extreme measures they did. But his is what passes for “education” these days (at least in California).

    And I love the visitors here who condone vandalism – well done! Excellent role model for our children. Next thing you know, you’ll be telling them about the health benefits of smoking marajiuana…

    • “Da. Fracking iss wery bad, nyet? Wandalism iss okay for to be protesting Ewil Fracking! Nyet Fracking!”

    • Frank, the impetus of all that you have written here, is the clash between wisdom and education. Education is confined to the current paradigm. Wisdom is not.

    • Excellent! Just tell the kids that it’s just defaced…that will make it all right! What a role model!

      • “Spray chalk marks on the asphalt in lower Bidwell Park by Wildflower Open Classroom students are considered vandalism by the city’s parks department. Dozens of these images were reported and removed Tuesday morning.”

        They used biodegradable spray-chalked to post messages having to do with saving the environment right on the environment they are trying to protect.

        Nothing was damaged and all marks came off cleaner than a Frixion pen. Using nature to protect nature with an ironic twist. Absolutely brilliant!

      • Yes, Chris, but other peoples’ tax dollars were wasted by these little, self-centered, unthinking Leftists to clean up the park. I don’t care how YOU feel about Fracking, or any of a number of subjects, but you don’t get to vandalize public spaces to force YOUR message on others.

        Buy a billboard ad, instead. Spend YOUR money, not “Ours.”

      • I could be held up as an example to the kids of how Not to be!
        Accurately describing things without hyperbole is a very inappropriate behaviour!

      • No hyperbole mebbe. These kids are being led by people who think it’s OK to deface public property. That is a fact. I am assuming you think this is OK. Perhaps they could do the same to your property and you’d think that was OK.

        I glad to see that our progressive visitors believe that defacing things, even with benign substances, is OK and great role model for our kids. Well done! Bravo!

      • Frank,
        You are so exercised about this that you are overlooking the fact that I was the one who characterized it as defacement.
        You and others are bent on equating that to vandalism.
        Perhaps that’s because you haven’t been the victim of vandals and don’t know that it’s very unpleasant; there’s broken glass and charred wood and new paint jobs etc., not just a couple of noses out of joint.

        I am not at all opposed to fracking, in fact, I’m grateful for it. I am opposed to school teachers indoctrinating children, especially with notions that I don’t agree with.

        I’m also opposed to every instance of murder being dubbed ‘genocide’.

        I don’t mind kids drawing on the side-walks and city park paths and I often see opinions that are not mine emblazoned on surfaces in town and country. My meds must be more potent than yours!

      • mebbe. OK fair enough. My point is that the kids should have been supervised by the “adults” and if they had been this ugly incident wouldn’t have happened. And yes I consider it vandalism…

      • James Harlock
        February 6, 2015 at 9:08 am

        Yes, Chris, but other peoples’ tax dollars were wasted by these little, self-centered, unthinking Leftists to clean up the park. I don’t care how YOU feel about Fracking, or any of a number of subjects, but you don’t get to vandalize public spaces to force YOUR message on others.

        Buy a billboard ad, instead. Spend YOUR money, not “Ours.”

        Point, James Harlock. (Bold was mine)

        Awaiting counterpoint… and waiting… and waiting… and waiting..
        .
        .
        ..
        I’m with you, Mr. Harlock. I’m all for free speech. Just say whatever you want on your dime, not mine.

    • “defaced”, sure! “vandalized”, not really.

      Whichever word best fits, a public park is public property.
      Why didn’t the teachers and kids “deface” the trees in their own yards or the walls of their own homes?

  7. There needs to be a March for Real Climate Education, but it won’t come from 99% of schools nowadays.

  8. “School site director Tom Hicks said Thursday that the vandalism was an unfortunate error in judgment related to the middle school students’ studies in civic engagement and activism.”

    Is there such a thing as an activist that doesn’t make an error in judgment??

    By the way…was the alternative view to “no fracking” ever discussed with the students, or were they only taught one side of the issue?

    • “Is there such a thing as an activist that doesn’t make an error in judgment??”

      There are lots of ’em! I read their posts here every day!

      • An activist is a person who campaigns for some kind of social change. When you participate in a march protesting the closing of a neighborhood library, you’re an activist. Someone who’s actively involved in a protest or a political or social cause can be called an activist.

        activist – Dictionary Definition : Vocabulary.com

        That appears to fit vandalism ‘to achieve some kind of social change’ by drawing slogans all over a public park – not so sure it fits disseminating science, news and views on a Blog that people have to access, even if many here are concerned about bad science being used by activists to achieve ‘some kind of social change’.

  9. Email from Tree 1441724 to Tree 143776, (from an NSA Intercept)

    So Laurel, you won’t believe what happened to me. I got a little tipsy snortin’ some really good CO2 and overdid it. It’s kinda hazy but I think a whole bunch of them “evolved” primates put a bunch of tattoo’s all along my trunk. Geeze, I thought that kind of thing only happened in Vegas.

  10. Unfortunate error in judgment related to the middle school students’ studies in civic engagement and activism? Yes, I’d say there have been boat loads of errors in judgment exercised starting with the parents decisions to enroll their kids in this charter “school.”

    • I wonder how many “warmists” have had their children immunized against measles. In the light of AGW-adhering psychologists and sociologists purporting to show how “paranoid” sceptics are, I took a straw poll of how many of my friends who adhere to AGW were against immunization. Out of 15 “alarmed” folks I know, every one of them is also dubious of the benefits of immunization, even though some are as old as I am and can recall school being emptied by local measles outbreaks in the ’50s.

    • Singapore doesn’t flog. They “cane” the soles of your feet with a bamboo staff.

      We lived in Malaysia for 10 years, where caning is also used. From what we heard it is effective in preventing repeat offenses as compared to imprisonment. From the reports we heard, caning the feet delivers something like a massive electrical shock along the whole body that the victim never wants repeated.

      So the appeal to the legal system is obvious. Cane someone for an offense you don’t want repeated and release them right away. They can get on with their lives with very little disruption or expense to the community and the chance of a repeat is lower than if you were to incarcerate.

      If anything, Singapore is practical. Where else in the world in a city of 5+ million people can women walk safely at night unescorted?

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Judicial_corporal_punishment
      The Singaporean official punishment of caning became much discussed around the world in 1994[3] when an American teenager, Michael P. Fay, was sentenced to six strokes of the cane for vandalism.[4] Since then, the number of caning sentences handed down each year in Singapore has doubled.[5]

  11. This was the same mentality that kids display when they shoot up road signs, Bash rural mail boxes and paint up the one lane bridges. My experience as a parent/sponsor on school outings tells me some adults were too busy chatting and not paying enough attention. Too bad that the Greenpeace Lima vandalism could not have been prevented by adult supervision over children.

    • In rereading the posts I see that the displacement of rocks to hold down plastic at the Nazca Lines was only a defacement. i trust the activists came back and put it all back after they made their media contribution… (NOT). This was a good example for the kids to follow, wasn’t it?

  12. Sure, maybe this group used an alleged harmless product.

    Does anyone think that a generation of, shall we say, less-than-fully-literate clods will read the full story? Or will the pic makes its rounds, sans asterisk?

  13. “Open Classroom”. Awww geeeez. Not this crap again.

    The “open classroom” idea was tried in the late 60s and early 70s. It failed miserably on countless levels. Why do US education “experimentalists” keep trying the same stuff expecting a different result. How many attempts at ‘new math” have we had since “STM” and “SMSG” of the late 60s? And exactly how much have all these new attempts at education improved outcomes? Yet now….we’re trying Common Core — at the federal level.

    No wonder we have so many people with utterly no idea of what science really is. LIkely, the academics chasing climate grants – just to avoid the real world – are buddies with the academics chasing education-related grants — also to avoid actual life in the real world.

    • Open Classroom = no responsibility for the “teachers”. It’s a cushy job. As a “teacher” they get to hang out with others of similar bent and feel like an important leader. The open classroom will always be around because there are always selfish “teachers” and lazy students that haven’t yet realized how selfish and lazy they really are; it’s a great fit.

  14. Why are seventh and eighth graders being radicalized in this manner? They do not yet know enough about the basic issues involved to do much critical thinking, and this means the staff are simply preparing too much of the activity for them. Please, staff, concentrate on basics, and the better world you seek may follow of its own accord.

    • In 1946, Dr. Benjamin Spock first published his infamous book “Common Sense Book of Baby and Child Care,” which was unlike any that came before it. Instead of stressing the importance of teaching self-denial and respect for authority, Spock discouraged directive training and emphasized accommodating children’s feelings and catering to their preferences. No longer did children learn they could endure Brussels sprouts and suffer through daily chores. Using Spock’s approach, parents began to feed self-indulgence instead of instilling self-control – homes were becoming child-centered. As parents elevated children’s “freedom of expression” and natural cravings, children became more outspoken, defiant and demanding of gratification. In fact, they came to view gratification as a right. http://www.wnd.com/2009/01/87179/

      Where did our society err in our failed attempts to build true self-esteem in our children? These same experts told parents that they could build their children’s self-esteem by telling them how smart and talented and beautiful and incredible they were (“You’re the best, Johnny!”). In other words, parents were led to believe that they could convince their children how wonderful they were. Unfortunately, life has a way of providing a reality check and children learned the hard way that they weren’t as fabulous as their parents told them they were. Parents were also told to praise and reinforce and reward their children no matter what they did. The result: lower self-esteem and children who were self-centered and spoiled. https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/the-power-prime/201006/popular-culture-americas-self-esteem-problem

      Schools receive additional money from state and federal government for every child labeled and drugged with ritalin. This clearly demonstrates a possible “financial incentive” for schools to label and drug children. It also backs up the alarming rise/increase in the labeling and drugging that has taken place in the last decade within our schools.

      Parents receiving welfare money from the government can get additional funds for every child that they have labeled and drugged. In this way, many lower socio-economic parents (many times single mothers) are reeled into the drugging by these financial incentives waved in front of them in hard times, making lifestyle changes possible.

      Labeling your child with ADHD, you are actually labeling them with a mental illness listed in the DSM-IV, the unscientific billing bible for psychiatry.

      A child taking a psycho-tropic, psycho-stimulant drugs like Ritalin after the age of 12 is ineligible for military service.

      The subjective checklists that are being used as criteria for diagnosis are very similar to the checklists used to determine Gifted and Talented Children.

      ….and this only scratches the surface of why we see destructive behavior being glorified in the name of “green” agenda promotion in public schools.

  15. Seems to me (a retired lawyer) that the school should first teach civic responsibility (obey the laws, respect others’ property) before setting out to commit “civic engagement and activism.”

    • Jim Brock

      I wholeheartedly agree and support your opinion. However, there is a possible cultural difficulty.

      There are times when standing against existing laws is seen as being a civic duty: women’s suffrage is one of many historical examples. Everyone needs to learn there can be a conflict between “civic responsibility” to uphold the status quo and civic duty to oppose a fault in the existing system.

      American culture is mostly right-wing and, therefore, tends to promote individual rights over communal responsibilities. Hence, the conflict may lean towards actions to oppose what an individual thinks to be a fault in the existing system. There are times this can be a cultural strength and at other times a cultural weakness.

      In my opinion, the vandalism of the trees was an offence against “civic responsibility”. And I agree with you that the school should have been teaching civic responsibility instead of a need for “activism” which the children lack experience to understand. However, I am not an American and I am a socialist, so I can understand why some Americans would not agree.

      Richard

      • “American culture is mostly right-wing … ”

        I am missing something here. Maybe we have a differing definition of culture, maybe we have a differing definition of right wing.

        AND, the jump in logic to the “therefore …” does not make any sense to me either. To me, right wing (or conservative) means rights and responsibilities are intertwined. Left wing leans more towards a disassociation between rights and responsibilities. I guess at this point we would then get into the differences between personal responsibilities and “communal” responsibilities and the direct/indirect impacts that ones actions may cause….

        But, overall (here in my American culture), it sure seems that there is a direct inverse correlation between an individual that is inclined to argue for promotion of “communal” responsibilities and that same individuals’ lack of personal responsibility.

        As a side note: The socialist utopia does not exist on a large scale. There is always someone else that wants to take your stuff (the ones with no personal responsibility/integrity), and the socialist setting makes it much easier for them to do so.

      • u.k.(us) and DonM:

        I refer you to the post by Dawtgtomis who writes of my comment

        Richard, this leads back to the eternal question of: “where does dissent become misdemeanor?”

        Yes, indeed it does. And that was what I was saying. Furthermore, the answer to that “eternal question” differs between cultures.

        uk(us), I did not “opine” and I did not claim I was relieved of any “burden” whatever opaque meaning you apply to “burden”. I stated where my comment was coming from as an addendum to the comment because it was about culture and I am not part of American culture.

        DobM, your views about socialism are not relevant. I added my addendum to declare that I was commenting from outside American culture and NOT as an attempt to troll the thread onto what you or anyone else thinks of socialism.

        Richard

      • richardscourtney
        “There are times when standing against existing laws is seen as being a civic duty: ”

        So, Richard what “existing law” were they “standing against”?
        BTW, There are only 19 producing NG wells in Butte county, none are fracked, none of the existing non-functioning wells are even planned or permitted to be fracked.

        S please explain the relevance of the school officials actions.

      • Bert Walker

        It would help if you, uk(us) and DonM were to comment on what I wrote and not what you think I could have written.

        I said I wholeheartedly agree with Jim Brock who wrote

        Seems to me (a retired lawyer) that the school should first teach civic responsibility (obey the laws, respect others’ property) before setting out to commit “civic engagement and activism.”

        and I said to him

        In my opinion, the vandalism of the trees was an offence against “civic responsibility”. And I agree with you that the school should have been teaching civic responsibility instead of a need for “activism” which the children lack experience to understand.

        However, I pointed out a possible cultural difficulty.

        Your post ignores everything I wrote and suggests I can “explain the relevance of the school officials actions”. That is so wrong that I am flabbergasted.

        Richard

      • Sheesh Richard, just come out and say something, anything, then we can stop dancing around the “cultural difficulty” thing.
        It is getting really tiresome, and it seems like you are using it as a shield.
        Which reminds me of the fact that I have completely lost my train of thought, and I’ll just……..

      • u.k.(us)

        I did “say something”. Please read it and you may grasp the “train of thought” about the “cultural thing” you seem to not understand: I would be pleased to discuss it but that requires some comment on it because I made my point.

        Richard

      • I did coment on what you said, but I will try to be a little more clear:

        Your comment, “Amercian culture is right wing” … Completely wrong … wrong beyond the need for further discussion.

        Your comment, “… tends to promote individual rights over communal responsibilities.” Completely wrong … we try so hard to help those that refuse to help themselves that we are creating a culture (its not even a subculture anymore) of does not understand personal responsibility. They have food, clothing, housing, medical care, cable tv, and cell phones, personal cars and are defined as being in poverty. They, and their children, will never learn to take care of themselves. We take from those who have, and do, to give to those who don’t, won’t, and can’t. We overdo it in the “communal” responsibility category.

        Your initial premise is completely wrong, your follow up qualification of the “therefore” is ludicrus, so your conclusive “Hence” isn’t even worth reading.

        The fact that your views are biased (limited? skewed? uninformed?) because you are not an American doesn’t give you an out with respect to the above. Your understanding of the Amercian culture is wrong.

        I do understand that your socialist leanings may alter (liimit) your perspective in a manner that would lead to disagrements, but I’ll make the same sort of leap in (il)logic that your did; It is likely your lack of perspective that has led you into your socialist beliefs rather than your socialist beliefs giving you a differing perspective.

      • Richard,
        I guess I finally got you.
        We’ll just have to disagree for the sake of disagreement.
        What ever that means.

      • DonM

        You say

        I did coment on what you said, but I will try to be a little more clear:

        OK. I will accept claim that as an honest statement and try to address your clarification.

        You immediately follow that claim with

        Your comment, “Amercian culture is right wing” … Completely wrong … wrong beyond the need for further discussion.

        In addition to being untrue, that ignores my comment as to what I meant by “right-wing” (i.e. “tends to promote individual rights over communal responsibilities”) and is pantomime childish. What next; after “Oh no it isn’t” do you next shout “Behind you”?

        Then you do attempt to discuss my statement “tends to promote individual rights over communal responsibilities”. This denies your claim that it is “beyond the need for further discussion” and ends with an assertion which proves that – at least in your case – my statement is true because you say

        We overdo it in the “communal” responsibility category.

        You go on to say

        Your initial premise is completely wrong, your follow up qualification of the “therefore” is ludicrus, so your conclusive “Hence” isn’t even worth reading.

        But you did read it and understood none of it.

        I again point you to the post of Dawtgtomis who did understand it and wrote

        Richard, this leads back to the eternal question of: “where does dissent become misdemeanor?”

        Richard

      • Initially you said “American culture is mostly right-wing and, therefore, tends to promote individual rights over…”

        In your February 8, 12:38 a.m. comment you said that what you meant by “right-wing” is that it “tends to promote individual rights over communal responsibilities”.

        (specifically, “In addition to being untrue, that ignores my comment as to what I meant by “right-wing” (i.e. “tends to promote individual rights over communal responsibilities”) )”

        Which is it? Which stance are you taking?

        “American culture is mostly right-wing and, therefore, tends to promote individual rights over communal responsibilities…”

        OR

        American culture “tends to promote individual rights over communal responsibilities” and therefore meets your definition of right wing.

        I am lost. Another rationalization will just further confuse me.

      • Which is it? Which stance are you taking?

        “American culture is mostly right-wing and, therefore, tends to promote individual rights over communal responsibilities…” [February 6 @ 10:22]

        OR

        American culture “tends to promote individual rights over communal responsibilities” and therefore meets your definition of right wing. [February 8 @ 12:38]

  16. Did anyone see this:

    “call on Gov. Jerry Brown to ban fracking and push for 100 percent renewable energy.”

    100% renewal? Do they realize what they are seeking? Potentially blackouts and no lights after dark!! I’m glad my children are grown and out of school, but I fear for my grandchildren.

    • Yep…the ultra socialist greener Arnold Schwarzenegger is “all in.” Some people confuse constitutional freedom of speech with dictates up the masses. Off subject, but another reason children are being taught to be activists, rather than learning what activism is, regardless of view.

    • I also noted that. Also looked into the schools ‘Guiding Principles’ (The founding group identified eight core values: collaboration, community, stewardship, joy and adventure in learning, integrity, personal responsibility, being respectful, and positive and honest communication. ). Don’t see leadership in there do you?
      Maybe they should teach ‘Consequence’ to the youths. Have them explore how their ideas will work in real life to power the lights, cell phones, TV and IPads with this idea from CSU. – http://www.chicoer.com/general-news/20100905/students-design-windmill-designed-for-the-third-world

      • Everybody wants freedom of choice for themselves. They don’t want the responsibility for the consequences of their choice.

      • DD, you have a great idea! let the students experience life without carbon based energy and products. About a week exposure would do I think.
        This would be too dangerous to try in the winter, some students could become quite ill, or even die.
        But the summertime, in Chico only reaches 90’s through low 100’s, a perfect time to try living 100% renewable, petroleum free.
        They could wear 100% natural fibers, no synthetics or elastics except natural rubber. they could use the water pump (linked in your comment), sans petroleum based components, to pump their water, to drink, wash and cool themselves. Of course they would be provided raw vegetables and grains, rice is plentiful in the area. They could use a camp fire for a light source, or even could an oil lamp, utilizing vegetable oil they pressed form the plant fauna present around them. They could have 3-4 solar panels, but wait, perhaps not, their construction is petroleum based batteries would present too dangerous an exposure for mere teenagers. And they wouldn’t have those pesky cell phones or tablets to charge anyway.
        Well I think they would have a jolly time.

  17. as part of a lesson on civic engagement and activism.
    Seventh- and eighth-graders

    i see they are back to teaching marketable skills in school again

      • Obama was elected because the US Press anointed him.
        The Press caused his election. All he needed to do was smile.
        How else could a candidate say “Electricity rates will necessarily SKYROCKET.” and still be elected?

  18. Well, independent of being taught that activist vadalismm is ok (Greenpeace Nasca Lines), it is clear these middle schoolers are NOT being taught how to do independent research and think for themselves. This is an indoctrination school, not a teaching school There are a lot of canards about fracking promoted by folks like Greenpeace. Since they are easy to disprove, believing in them proves indoctrination. Essay No Fracking Way.

    A California fracking ban would be a futile waste of time, just feel good green warmunism. Shows how clueless the class and its indoctrinating ‘teachers’ are. California’s Monterey shale geology does not enable horizontal drilling, without which fracking shale is hopelessly uneconomic even if oil is several hundred $/bbl. That is why on 5/21/14 EIA Director Sieminski announced the erroneous previous EIA Monterey shale technically recoverable reserve estimate (at any oil price) was being reduced 97% to essentially zero. He said, “The rock is there, the technology isn’t”. Essay Reserve Reservations. Both in the energy portion of ebook Blowing Smoke.

  19. let me get this straight, Mr. Watts:
    you are protesting chalk on a dead tree?
    kids being used as propaganda puppets is just fine with you and the reason you to continue paying for it?
    you whine about trivia and support monstrosity. mmmk
    somebody’s priorities are off. must be mine, cuz i refuse to pay for it. i guess that makes me not responsible for it. chalk it up to COURAGE OF CONVICTION, i guess. try some.

    [reply: “courage of conviction” is that why you have to hide behind a fake name to criticize me? Feel free to be as upset as you wish, but don’t lecture me on courage, chump. – Anthony Watts]

    • gnomish says:

      …you are protesting chalk on a dead tree?

      Get a clue, gnomish. This is an article from the Chico newspaper. We are discussing it. You can comment if you like, but by trying to blame the host you are the one who looks petty.

      • it was understood, mr stealey, that chico is mr. watts’ home town and the teachers, parents and children are neighbors.
        it is understood that a charter school is paid for by taxes.
        that neighbors find it important to rehearse their children in religious or political activism might, therefore, be expected to be yet more personal an issue for somebody who is tapped to contribute directly to its support.
        and yet the beef is ostensibly chalk on a dead tree.
        and that, sir, is legitimate cause for wonder.
        you know it, i know it and any rational individual understands that discussing the trivial in this context is a displacement behavior. there is a reason for that, you can count on it.

        the anonymous coward card may have some legitimate application sometimes but it is not possible to hide from me behind a wagging finger. disapprove all you like, mr watts, but if a person won’t dare to explain how dead chalk on a tree overshadows the crippling conditioning that will make monstrosities of the generation that succeeds you – on your dime- i just might be so bold as to mention it as peculiar and ask why.
        if the response is utterly rommulan, i might speculate as to why that is too.
        there was a serious and important topic in that news and it was conspicuously not grafitti.
        there are the clues. what can be deduced?

      • anonymous coward says:

        …crippling conditioning that will make monstrosities of the generation that succeeds you…

        What “monstrosities” might you be talking about? Be specific.

        This is all part and parcel of the 10/10 mindset, where children are taught a fatal lesson for daring to think for themselves. You call that “displacement behavior”. I call it propaganda, and it is not trivial when you add it all up.

        what cvan be deduced?

        Simple. It can be deduced that impresionable children are being taught that if vandalism is done in a ‘good’ cause, that it is A-OK. If you don’t see a big problem with that, then you have the problem. As it says in the article:

        If it were a PRO fracking message, done with “biodegradeable chalk”, those same people would have a COW over it.

        Why don’t you try that, and see what happens?

      • “there was a serious and important topic in that news and it was conspicuously not grafitti.” ~gnomish

        dbstealey, here I think he is making a very veiled reference to the evils to society if educational freedom is tolerated in any way.***

        That is a silly argument on its face. Charter schools are a form of educational choice and they have long lines for admissions, as parents try to flee the failing public schools, and the teachers’ unions. The charter schools are smaller, versatile competitors, who operate on a much smaller budget. Outcomes for many are often outstanding, and approaches to education can be flexible. This is the best case scenario.

        My state provides the worst case scenario for charter schools. Charters were passed by voters, but the bill provides that the public school boards will control and monitor the charters. Why pretend that there is a choice and competition, when the smaller schools are regulated by the failed state monopoly?

        He is also making a silly argument that WUWT should not talk about grafitti because he should be talking about more important things – according to gnomish. There’s a text book case of finger wagging – followed by a finger wag, saying not to wag fingers at him, no less.

        ***(Unless you are a Congress critter. These send their children to private schools and so do half of all public school teachers.)

      • DbStealey,

        California:
        1. The funding follows the student to the charter school or the public “district” school.
        2. The funding is less if the student goes to a charter.
        3. Charter schools are not private schools. They have open admissions, unlike private schools.

        Some problems with charter schools operating on less per student include requirements that teachers receive the same retirement plans as others, and the lack of provision for buildings and facilities. So they must do much more with much less.

    • +1 Anthony
      Saved me from going full-bore on that……comment that was so stupid, it must have been worded just to raise the ire.
      While unknowingly just relieving some of the tension.

    • I didn’t know that in various mythologies that gnomes were clueless.
      “Courage of Conviction”? “Try some”? If Anthony didn’t have that, this blog wouldn’t exist.

    • G, you are in sever need of several clues. You may like “public education” but these kids were in a “Charter School.” You will find that the farther north you go in California the more “conservative” the state is. The result is that issues where the whack jobs of the left and right concur, like “what I want my child taught,” “charter schools” and other profound wastes are encouraged by-laterally. You may refuse to “pay” for public education, but that isn’t what these kids are getting.

  20. Is it a biodegradable chalk? Or is it rock chalk, whose particles will rub or wash off and become small litter?

    • “Biodegradable” in this context means the same as “holy” in holy water. It is normal chalk (CaCO3) blessed by the local bishop of the church of ecology.

    • Chalk is CaCO3. It is “biodegradable,” but only in the sense that acid decomposes it. A dilutesolution of vinegar should clear it.

  21. The culture of political dissent exists in America that was instilled at its inception to protect against the tyranny of political orthodoxy in what is fashioned as a secular, rather than a religious state. The first amendment to the US constitution protects the views of “chalkgate” activists, but does not protect them from our opinions of their action. They first broke the law of respecting the laws of the land, and in doing so disrespected all.

  22. In that wonderful country of yours, writing something on a dead tree is a heinous crime. The culprits deserve the capital punishment, it is much worse that destroying a country which owns non-existant “weapons of mass destruction” or stealing a presidential election. It’s your country, you do whatever you want with it, none of my business, so long as you don’t get close to my backyard..

    • When I was young, 13 (1973), I visited Europe. I was aghast to see spray painted graffiti on buildings that were hundreds of years old. I wondered how some Europeans could have such a lack of self respect.

    • In that wonderful country of yours, writing something on a dead tree is a heinous crime. The culprits deserve the capital punishment, it is much worse that destroying a country which owns non-existant “weapons of mass destruction” or stealing a presidential election.

      Français, this is not the UN, this is WUWT. We dislike that kind of posturing here.

      Do you think you are Chirac?

  23. At first glace your comment deserves no response; however just to help you personally develop, roughly 5,000 chemical warheads, and bombs, 36 120-mm mortar rounds containing liquid blistering agents, 550 metric tonnes of “yellowcake” (sold to Canada by the way), Iraq had produced 19,000 liters of concentrated botulinum toxin (nearly 10,000 liters filled into munitions), 8,500 liters of concentrated anthrax (6,500 liters filled into munitions) and 2,200 liters of aflatoxin (1,580 liters filled into munitions). In total, the program grew a half million liters of biological agents. And who did Iraqi leadership use these on but his civilians; the Kurds.

    Nuclear activities uncovered and destroyed included: a) an industrial scale complex for Electromagnetic Isotope Separation (EMIS), a process for producing enriched uranium. The complex was designed for the installation of 90 separators. b) a large scale manufacturing and testing facility–the Al Furat Project–designed for the production of centrifuges, used in another method of uranium enrichment. c) facilities and equipment for the production of weapons components. d) computer simulations of nuclear weapons detonations. d) storage of large quantities of HMX high explosive used in nuclear weapons.

    As for elections, like you say, it’s not your business, but thanks for caring. Now, back to my Château Lafite Rothschild. Prost!

  24. I think California SHOULD close down its fossil fuel industry, stop using all fossil fuels and all fossil fuel related materials, foods, medicines, and go to 100% ‘renewables’. I also think that everyone who is a Californian and agrees with that position must be required to remain in the state for at least a year following the big switch, and should not be allowed to import anything which is made from, or produced by the use of fossil fuels, from the rest of the country or anywhere else.

    After a week or two, we can check in on them to see how it’s going. They would deserve it.

  25. James Harlock:

    I suppose you learned your Russian from listening to Chekov on “Star Trek.” The sad fact is that Russian does have the “v” sound…but does not have the “w” sound. (“Nuclear wessels” indeed.)

    • In fact, they do convert some “v”s to “w”s at times. I’ve spent time on the Crimean peninsula. If I recall my linguistics correctly, the two “phones” compose a single phoneme in Russian. I never did learn the condition that resulted in the the shift; vodka often came out “wodka,” but I never heard them have a problem with “very.” While I worked there English speakers often would come and spend time asking for help improving their conversational pronunciation of English like “her” which was frequently pronounced “h’yoor,” The “r” being trilled as they say.

  26. IMHO, if the subject of fracking is to be broached at all in public schools, then BOTH sides of the issue should be given equal time since we are talking about public tax dollars being spent here. And, like it or not, IT IS a two-sided issue. Seeing public dollars being used to promote just one side of an issue in public schools gives kids the wrong idea of how subjects should be approached and taught to our young people in public schools to begin with.

    As regards activism and encouraging young people to be activist, it should be broached in a general (or should I say a neutral) way, if at all. In other words, activism should be introduced as a subject without having the teacher revealing his or her bias or position on any one activist subject. That really isn’t so hard to do if one thinks about it.

    Because they are funded with public tax dollars, our public schools are NOT the place to lead young people down the road to any single activist position on a subject of controversy today. Any teachers and/or administrators who are caught doing so should have their positions in the public school system reviewed by the school board. If necessary, they should be dismissed. Teacher either from the left or right who find it difficult or impossible to leave their personal biases at home when leaving for work have no business being in the school system to begin with.

  27. CD!%# says:

    BOTH sides of the issue should be given equal time since we are talking about public tax dollars being spent here.

    AMEN! And each side should provide their own spokespeople. If that were done acrross the board, the fracking scare, like the MMGW scare, would quickly be history.

  28. Anyone who supports these children’s activities should invite them to use the side of their home for a billboard. Who will be the first to step forward?

  29. The ‘kids’ and the ‘adult’ supervisors that participated in the graffiti ‘activism’ should be cited and fined for willful destruction of public property. In addition to the fines, they should all be sentenced to ‘community service’, i.e. scrubbing the graffiti off of every surface they damaged. If their cleaning efforts further damaged the public property, additional fines should be applied.

    This would provide the proper ‘positive learning experience’ their ‘wildflower activism’ deserves.

    • I think the best course would be to pull the schools “Charter” or have it put on probation. But then the people who are responsible for policing their activities are most likely of the same mindset.

      Until education is reformed and back under the control of the public, rather then legislating to the public this type of nonsense will continue.

      michael

  30. “including making their own biodegradable chalk.”

    I’ll respect these students the moment they remove all petroleum-based goods and services from their lives.

  31. Wondering if they drew Swastikas with biodegradable chalk then would that be OK and not offensive.

  32. I doubt that there’s a Freon-based propellant in the spray chalk.

    The real pollution in the story is mind pollution. That school is poisoning the minds of those children.

  33. UPDATE: Predictably, a few foolhardy apologists cry foul in comments saying that because they used “biodegradable chalk” on the trees “they did nothing wrong”.

    If it were a PRO fracking message, done with “biodegradeable chalk”, those same people would have a COW over it.

    Further, they used petroleum based solvent with a freon based propellant spray chalk paint elsewhere to paint political messages like this one:”””

    I don’t know if my comment differentiating “defacement’ from ‘vandalism’ casts me as a “foolhardy apologist” but I didn’t see anyone saying “they did nothing wrong”, they said it wasn’t a very big deal.

    Had it been a Pro fracking message, I expect the anti’s would have been outraged and the Pro’s would have shrugged. After all, there’s a lot of graffiti done every day and it’s seldom made into a big story.
    You can hog the side-walk day in day out with some knuckle-headed placard and people have to put up with it, you can litter the rural roads with flyers. Stuff happens.

    I didn’t see any such description of the paint in the story; it said they made it themselves and it was chalk.
    Apparently, it was effectively erased in half an hour. They can’t clean up dog crap that quickly.

    If I had come upon this graffiti, I would have certainly harrumphed and uttered words not permissible here, but all the indignation expressed here makes me wonder what punishment would be envisaged for these acts. I sure hope the law-makers were more phlegmatic than the opinions above.

    • mebbe,, This is less about the students then the faculty. PAUSE and reflect,, the teachers knew right from wrong. With a simple phone call they most likely would have been given permission. Its not about “fracking”‘ it’s about civic responsibility, common courtesy to others and ethics. It is the faculties responsibility to be be teaching these virtues not using them as a doormat. People do not be harsh with the kids, They naturally look up to the teachers. The teachers must be worthy of that trust.

      michael

      • Had you said “this SHOULD be about the teachers, not the students”, I would agree.
        In fact, the pre-occupation has been with the “vandalism” committed.
        This happened as a consequence of teachers inculcating in their students views that they, the teachers, hold. It’s concomitant with a general elevation of children to the adult world by educators.
        My objection to it would not be much less had they engaged in some activity that is not proscribed by law;
        fund-raising for a campaign to print Tee shirts, holding hands on the village green and chanting, I dunno!
        They have some march planned and scrounging for a bus. That’s not vandalism.
        I suspect that the teachers involved did not think for a moment that they were embarking on civil disobedience. It probably never occurred to them that they were doing anything wrong.

        The truth is that teachers are constantly impressing subjective views on malleable minds.

    • mebbe,
      See Mac the Knife
      February 6, 2015 at 1:15 pm

      I don’t give a damn if it’s gang signs, taggers, ‘fracked up activists’, or just another moron defacing public or private property, I want the little bastards and the adults that set this up held responsible for cleaning up the mess… with some fines to serve as a ‘kick in the ass’ to make sure they don’t want to do that again! And while they’re serving their community service, clean up the dog crap also! That’s what punishment I ‘envisaged’ for these defacing public property acts. A little hard labor and humiliation goes a long way in reforming petty criminal activities. It’s a time honored tradition in these United States of America and an effective one. How copy, over?

      • Well, Mac the Knife (I hope the blade is under the legal 3 inches)

        Cleaning up their mess and paying a fine seems about right. An appropriate response to a misdemeanor like thousands and thousands of others perpetrated every day.
        I paid $160 for failure to signal a lane change a few months ago.
        Now, how do you feel about teachers bad-mouthing resource extraction methods that they don’t know anything about? It’s not illegal.

      • mebbe,
        how do you feel about teachers bad-mouthing resource extraction methods that they don’t know anything about?

        Already had that ‘discussion’ with a shirt-tail relative teacher. I observed that, for a person with an education degree, they were astoundingly ignorant of the facts…. while being incredibly arrogant about their demonstrably wrong-headed beliefs. I followed that with a series of facts and hard questions that demonstrated just how wrong-headed they were. I haven’t been invited to one of their cook-outs since, to my sincere satisfaction.
        Mac

        PS: I’m an ‘old school’ metallurgical engineer – had to pass the Extractive Metallurgy courses first before moving on to Solidification, Deformation, and specific Alloy course work.

    • Yeah, but don’t you think they should be learning to read and calculate and study history, languages, how to think as opposed to what to think and science instead. Remember this activist kind of stuff is what progressive “Core” curriculum Trojan horses are all about. I have a professor friend who told me that they have to have pre-university remedial studies in English and mathematics for entrants after they come from high school these days because they wouldn’t be able to work at the university level. Most students solve this problem by going into political science and sociology two disciplines that have been totally bankrupt over about two generations. If these were my children, I would have had something to say to the kids and the school. No, folks, it’s not okay. It’s also not okay to be teaching all the sexual catalogue available to them when they are 5 and 6 years old either. The other hundred complaints I’ll leave for homework for the reader.

  34. These kids aren’t learning anything about fraking. This class should be called “Introduction to Environmental Activism.” It didn’t have to be frakking. It could have been ANY “environmentalist” topic.

    You can damn well bet these kids were not exposed to any objective , real science. They’re taught to recite talking points (e.g., ground water contamination, leaking methane, earthquakes, etc.), draw attention to their “cause”, silence opposition.

    Their gray pony tailed partents must be beaming with pride.

  35. Personally, if my kids mixed their capital and lower case letters like that they would lose their electronics for a while.

    PS, from tall bloke’s. This will make your day!

    • Great graphic, Zeke. Opposition to fracing is all political. If that technology had not suddenly become so productive, it would have been attacked by the eco groups all along. But it took them a while to ramp up, and in the mean time we have had the great benefit of cheap natural gas.

      There is absolutely nothing that fracing has done to harm the environment. Everyone benefits from it — except the Saudis and the Russians. It’s a win-win!

  36. Sorry, I have kids, and they are totally capable of coming up with dumb and unsubstantiated opinions without being “indoctrinated” by anyone or anything different from whatever sways the mind of the typical adult. Also my kid went to an “open” school with no grades or classrooms and her classmate just got into MIT after totally acing every college level class she took in calculus, chemistry, physics and whatever else she took at Harvard Extension night school (4.0 average and all top test scores – she wants to be an engineer). So please don’t use this article to justify preconceived biases about how kids ought to be strictly dominated by the “right” people.

    • Cris
      February 6, 2015 at 2:51 pm
      “Sorry, I have kids, and they are totally capable of coming up with dumb and unsubstantiated opinions without being “indoctrinated” by anyone or anything different from whatever sways the mind of the typical adult.”

      That’s the exact reason we DON’T want them to be indoctrinated by a person that has not mentally developed beyond the stage of an angry child, Cris.

  37. “Teacher either from the left or right who find it difficult or impossible to leave their personal biases at home when leaving for work have no business being in the school system to begin with.” CD!%# February 6, 2015 at 12:42 pm

    That is the exact same argument made by the FCC in the forties to impose the Fairness Doctrine.

    “In a Wall Street Journal op-ed published online Monday, Ajit Pai, a Republican FCC commissioner, said the agency is taking a “dangerous” first step toward “newsroom policing” in the style of the now-defunct Fairness Doctrine. Under the controversial doctrine, which the FCC abandoned in 1987 and formally took off the books in 2011, the agency required radio and TV stations to air opposing views on controversial issues.

    Look before you Leap, like I always say. Applied to broadcasters, this forces speakers to say things they do not want to say, in effect. Applied to schools, this would require quite a lot of policing and micromanagement. How would that improve education? In fact, I think we all understand how selectively this would be applied and enforced. I don’t recall any of the public broadcasting channels presenting alternative views, except as strawmen.

    Surely we can all see that the policing would only apply to non-green charters and to homeshcoolers.

    • There is, in principle, a plausible foundation for the Fairness Doctrine. Broadcast bandwidth is a limited commodity and access is expensive and difficult. It is “owned” by the public via the FCC. If broadcasters got together and blackballed a certain political party or point of view, there would be little recourse for the adversely affected party. You can’t just go out and put up a radio or television tower and turn on the juice. As usual, there is the law of unintended consequences, resulting, as you observed, in less discussion instead of more. In addition, the rise of the Internet and the ease of setting up your own blog has so lowered the bar for access to the public sphere as to make the Fairness Doctrine a solution in search of a problem.

      • D.J. Hawkins

        In addition, the rise of the Internet and the ease of setting up your own blog has so lowered the bar for access to the public sphere as to make the Fairness Doctrine a solution in search of a problem.

        A, that, my brother, is today’s rub. See, Big Government IS taking over CONTROL (of the distribution of the Internet (under their latest New Age/1984/new World order propaganda title of “The Fairness Doctrine” specifically BECAUSE Big Government does NOT control the Internet. Yet.

        By indoctrination and self-promotion and self-censorship, they DO control today’s broadcast and cable mass press corpse of ABCNNBCBS (plus of course the BBC/ABC/CBC) “neutral” news readers. (Thus the absolute hatred of Fox news among the left/socialist party =- the only network only partially balanced!)

  38. inre: Fairness Doctrine Forcing broadcasters to present both sides of any statement actually had a chilling effect on the type of shows on the radio. Broadcasters did not want to run afoul of the Fairness Doctrine so they stuck to entertainment. When this was rightly done away with, radio experienced a renaissance.

    I have not owned a TV all my life but have listened to thousands of hours of radio. My son likes the old radio shows like “Suspense” and “The Wistler.”

    I hesitate to point out that the owner of the cheif broadcaster of talk radio shows, Clear Channel, is Bain Capital. Salem Broadcasting had some degree of independence and that may explain why at least some talk show hosts did not support Romney in his two bids for election as a Republican, based on his success in passing Romneycare in MA. So I really don’t care what gets done to Clear Channel actually. Sorry so crabby.

  39. Horrifying that students so young are being brain washed to this extent. And yet they would be first to moan if the fuel for the bus that is needed to take them above mentioned rally in Oakland cost beyond their financial means!

    Cheers

    Roger

    http;//www.rogerfromnewzealand.wordpress.com

  40. I personally could care less about the fracking issue in California. The only reason I don’t want to see fracking stopped in California is because that would put a lot of skilled workers out of jobs and the California government would slide further into debt. The economy might go into total collapse and even more “California dreamers” might escape to my state. Then the rest of us will have to be robbed to pay for the stupidity that goes on there. God help us if that happens.

    • Ernest,

      Your comment smells of latter day Ludditeism.

      Wealth does not come from refusing to embrace progress in technology and innovation, quite the opposite.

      By your analogy we should still be using horses because embracing motor transport will put the horse industry out of work, or we should retain sailing ships because the modern ship has put seamen out of work.

      In a epoch of unprecedented wealth for all, we can see that the replacement of these old technologies with cheaper and economical new technologies is the major cause of our wealth.

      Therefore if fracking makes the supply of energy less expensive, although some may well need to retrain or find other jobs, the wealth for everyone will increase as everyone will benefit from the less expensive energy, leaving to a household surplus which will benefit everyone.

      The reason why California is in economic turmoil is that their government is spending their citizen’s money on technologies that require taxpayer (their) money in order to promote expensive alternative energies.
      To move a vital key industry from a current cost to something far more expensive, no matter how it is paid for, is a sure way to cause economic problems.

      You should be suggesting that they quit subsidizing windmills and solar panels etc.

      Why don’t you take a read of Milton Friedman, the most incisive economist in history, an American and he says it all.

      Just think if no one had the vision of Henry Ford in that the motor car could be available to every one at the right price. How many people did Henry Ford employ in his heyday and how many are even employed nowadays?

      Cheers

      Roger

      http://www.rogerfromnewzealand.wordpress.com

      • Roger, there is more. Fracking was invented in its primitive state in 1865 by a Civil War vet who took out a patent on the procedure. It used gun powder charges to fracture aquifers to improve water flow. It was adopted immediately by oil well drillers when the industry was in its early stage but they used nitroglycerine. There were a few fatalities, of course, but the oil and gas industry continued to use a safer version they called “torpedoing” a well. This was done right up until the 1960s when fracking using high pressure water got to be more effective. The first well “fracked” in this style was in 1947 in the Hugoton, Kansas gas field. It has been used around the world for decades. It just wasn’t widely known. Indeed, fracking only got to be a target of activists like the teacher clones in California of this thread when they were out greenpeacing about renewable energy. They thought oil and gas was essentially a dying goose and they put all their effort into stopping coal. When they discovered that oil and gas (cheap energy) were making an unexpected comeback big time, that’s when they started attacking fracking. Most of these loons think it is a new technology, but it’s older than the oil and gas industry.

        When you know some of these things, it puts this activist stuff in its place as the doing of ignorant useful idiots to the dark forces that I see as a permanent tax on productivity. Like the Nile crocodile, even if you are saving his sorry ass, he’s wired to try to bite your legs off.

      • You misunderstand. I’m all in for modern fracking. Perhaps I needed a sarc/ tag in there somewhere. California is a mess financially and physically because it’s been run for decades by progressives. That’s why I don’t care about what happens to the state if they don’t allow fracking. They deserve what they will get if they don’t. I’d just as soon all those fools stayed inside their border, however, rather than fanning out across flyover country in search of work like some fast spreading poison. They bring their anti-Americanism with them. So I hope petroleum wins out.

        I took twelve hours of economics in college. Milton Friedman was certainly part of the curriculum. Unfortunately, so was Keynes, whose theories have brought on so much modern disaster at the hands of the government and Federal Reserve.

        I’m well aware that the American economic engine continues to grind along despite the best efforts of Obama and the Democrats to kill it. Fracking is alive and well and growing despite the Progressive agenda that includes taking cheap and abundant energy off the table for the rest of us non-elites.

  41. School days, school days
    Dear old golden rule days
    Reading and ‘riting and ‘rithmatic
    Taught to the tune of a hick-ry stick!

    What is all this about golden rules, three Rs, and hickory sticks? (:

    • Look at this book I found.
      Fools’ Names and Fools’ Faces are Always Seen in Public Places: A Study of Graffiti.

      Could be instructive for some people’s children.

    • I remember a cartoon strip entitled “the wizard of id” with the knight Rodney and the king always having entertaining dialogue. One was “Sire, Sire! The peasants are revolting. The king said “did you just discover this now?”

      • From Mel Brooks “History of The World…”:
        French Squire: Sire, The peasants, they’re revolting.
        French King: I’ll say, they stink on ice.

  42. “On the students’ Facebook page, they explain they have decided to take a stand against fracking. They are helping Frack-Free Butte County organize a bus to the March for Real Climate Leadership and raise awareness through a community art project and outreach.”

    “The March for Real Climate Leadership is expected to attract thousands of people to Oakland, where participants will call on Gov. Jerry Brown to ban fracking and push for 100 percent renewable energy.”

    Start with their school. Remove it from the grid, the teachers and students can build renewable energy collectors to power the school. It would be educational for all involved, to find out how “reliable” and expensive renewable energy is.

    • Start with their school. Remove it from the grid, the teachers and students can build renewable energy collectors to power the school. It would be educational for all involved, to find out how “reliable” and expensive renewable energy is.

      You’re mean, LarryD ;o)

      That charter school would be flat busted in a heartbeat if they went to 100% renewable energy. The kids would use up all the solar power just on texting, tweeting, and praising their new overlords.

      (OTOH, there’s something to be said for veggies roasted over an open fire. Kumbayah, LarryD, Kumbayah.)

  43. Gunga Din,
    I didn’t know what you were referring to in regards to Dr. Spock’s children, so I did websearch him. You apparently are thinking of the incorrect rumor that one of his son’s had committed suicide. He had two sons, Michael and John. Michael was the director of the Boston’s Children Museum and is now retired. John owned a construction company. It was Michael’s son, Peter, suffering from schizophrenia, a devastating mental disease that has nothing to do with one’s upbringing, that leaped to his death at the age of 22 from the Museum’s roof. If you have any facts contradictory to these I’d be interested in hearing them and their source, or as I suspect, were you just engaged in nasty ideological trolling?

    • Thanks.
      I’d forgotten that it was his grandson and not his son that had committed suicide. His son did raise his grandson.
      I’d read that he then recanted his views before he died. I’ve also read that he didn’t.
      Either way, to cater to the “feelings” of a child born foolish is, well, foolish.
      A child needs firm, simple and clear guidance without the input of what a cigar might mean. Otherwise they will remain careless in their thoughts and actions.
      The “real world” won’t care about how he “feels” about things.
      Spock took the idea of feeling “personal worth” to the extreme.

  44. I love Christopher Paino’s position! I’m brewing up some “biodegradable” chalk right now to go paint some protest messages on Half Dome, the Grand Canyon, and Mount Rushmore! Let’s all go do it, just make sure all your marks come off cleaner than a Frixion pen!
    /sarc

  45. As an antidote, my son is a member of the British Youth Council and is a firm and well known CC skeptic. He was, yesterday, offered the chance to become a “climate ambassador” by the youth council. He was pretty amazed and asked why they were picking him. They said that he was the last resort as everyone else was not interested. He declined anyway as his term of office runs out next month.

    Nice they can’t find any activists over here.

  46. …..is there anything to frack in Butte County? Didn’t it get its name from that rather imposing sub-volcanic structure called the Sutter Buttes? Just wondering. Perhaps these young brainwashed protesters should do a bit of geological research before wasting their time and everyone else’s on making the area “frack-free”…in a tectonic region fraught with them.

  47. I did something similar, but worse, at a local creek when I was 12. ‘They’ (the state, I guess?) were going to expand the parking lot (to fit a whole 6 cars instead of the current 2), install a picnic table and fire pit, and build a small walking bridge over the creek. My neighbor and I spent a lot of time playing in this area and we would be damned if these people were going to come along and destroy our little patch of woods. Filled with self-righteous rage we snuck out one night fully intending to destroy the evil heavy equipment left in the area before it could rip the heart out of Mother Earth. Keys were in the equipment, but we couldn’t figure out how to start them, nor could we figure out how to damage them significantly, and eventually had to settle for leaving them covered in spray-paint and mud inside and out.

    Of course that didn’t even slow them down and within a few weeks the project was completed. We grudgingly loved it. Hardly anyone ever stopped there so we had the picnic area all to ourselves, and the bridge made the most fantastic fishing spot (and spared us a lot of cold creek crossings!). I still feel a little bad for the damage we did, not to mention our malicious intentions to do much worse. If anyone reading this worked on the little park in Peter’s Creek, AK in the mid 80s, I’m truly sorry!

  48. Almost illegible stencils with uninspired slogans plus neglected Stewardship: what a crap school!
    Kids have gotten punished for much minor offences, here they get away scot free, even without admonition? It’s the teachers who deserve corporal punishment, I think. And, btw, please tell the kids that fracking isn’t bad per se!

  49. in all this pro or contra…. i wonder what pro’s would say if it were just gang tag graffiti and that they would say “i’s chalk based it will wash off at the next rainshower”

    in short: if it is not requested then it is vandalism period (you can always request an action which can be approved)

    if it was approved then it’s a storm in a glass of water, but then i wonder: why the need to defigure nature to make your point? IMVHO being carefull for nature is trying to leave the least of traces and respect the integrity of the natural environment, or even enhance it

    if you want to teach children or students about the dangers of fracking, then tell this correctly set up a non destructive zero trace campaign as otherwise even chalk “alters your environment”

    very bluntly said now these students were taught that “spraying a message on a tree is OK if the message is ok”… not the best way to bring up the point against fracking….

  50. I thought there were laws prohibiting adults from inducing children to commit crimes. Of course, “environmentalists” doing so is a good thing.

  51. Well, at least this anti-fracking “protest” had somebody show up. (Of course, “they” only showed up after bein driven to the school in oil-powered cars and SUV’s, being heated by oil and coal and nat gas power, and being bused to the protest site in oil-powered bus coordinated over oil and nat gas-powered phone and power lines over highways paved with oil-derived asphalt …..)

    In Colorado, they posted, they advertised, they printed, and …. nobody came.
    Full story after the link.

    http://energyindepth.org/mtn-states/anti-fracking-rally-cancelled-following-low-turnout/

    Anti-Fracking Rally Cancelled Following Low Turnout

    5:05pm EST February 3, 2015
    by Aileen Yeung
    aileen@energyindepth.org, Denver, CO

    A national activist group – which used Tom Steyer’s Colorado political firm to lobby the state’s oil and gas task force – cancelled an anti-fracking rally today after just one person RSVPed. The decision to abandon the rally followed very low turnout at a protest yesterday outside the Colorado Convention Center, where the task force has been meeting the past two days.

    At yesterday’s demonstration, there were more protest signs than there were protestors to hold them. Clean Water Action Colorado’s Facebook page for the rally mentions how the group “has turned out impacted and frustrated Coloradans for rallies at every task force meeting” and tells folks to “Come and See the impact we’ve made.”

    EID took them up on their offer and found that only a smattering few – no more than thirteen, including Clean Water Action Colorado employees – actually attended Monday’s rally outside the Colorado Convention Center.

    Signs: Because only a handful of protestors showed up, protest signs remained propped up against lamp posts. Photo: Energy In Depth

    Clean Water Action Colorado cancelled the second rally it had planned for today’s task force meeting after only one person – the group’s State Director – RSVPed yes for the event.

    Poor attendance at yesterday’s rally and Clean Water Action Colorado’s decision to cancel today’s protest reflect, once again, that anti-energy activists are part of a fringe campaign that has failed to gain traction in Colorado.

  52. If those trees had their own e-mail address with a public employee operating it on the taxpayer’s wage (I wanted to say dime but that’s so 19th century), he would say “It’s all okay, because being anti-fracking is the official position of the administration. Also, expect much more of these graffities to appear everywhere around you because we community organizers think that your entire living environment should be full of our propaganda, and we’ll pay for it with your money, thank you very much.”

  53. Anthony, sounds like you have schools that are similar to those provided by tax payer funded education in Australia. What kids really need to be taught first is how to identify cranks. Then they wouldn’t be influenced by the teacher-activists.

  54. Just out of curiosity has anyone ever seen non-biodegradable chalk? I would think that since chalk has to crumble to dust to be effective as chalk it would be biodegradable. Maybe I missed non-biodegradable chalk being a looming environmental problem.

    Well maybe next time they can make gluten free chalk and vandalize wheat farms.

  55. You can take the students out of the ‘hood, but you can’t take the ‘hood out of the students, apparently.

  56. Hicks said. “At this point we are working with the parks department to rectify the situation and making every effort to turn this into a learning experience for everybody involved.”
    ===============
    And just what learning experience might come out of it ?
    Something like:
    1) Defacing natural surroundings in order to save it, makes for bad press.
    2) Refer to # 1.
    3) There has to be a way to make these meanies feel guilty without resorting to # 1.
    4) There must be some kind of government grant to solve this dilemma.
    5) Create one.

  57. I guarantee you that if I did the same to their school saying CAGW is a hoax they would not consider it stewardship.

  58. Dead trees should be cut up for firewood. They make it impossible to hike and promote forest fires.

  59. Boo hoo! The children marked up a few trees to stop future generations from acquiring cancer through polluted aquifers that will impact future generations. A small price to pay for an energy industry that thinks of a fast buck today and impedes progress on alternative energy sources. Remember the Exxon Valdez, BP oil spill and thousands of other egregious spills.These trees will be long decomposed when the children of these students will still be consuming the contaminated waters the industry admits contains known carcinogens such as benzene. I don’t trust media of any kind because they are the lapdog of the 1% that only care about current profits and have these industries as sponsors. Why don’t you spend more time suing the companies that perpetrate these crimes against humanity to reveal the contents of these fracking fluids. “Mass media: the slave of the military – industrial complex Eisenhower warned us against.”

      • He is an exceedingly confused young man. This is the result of receiving an education from the Cannabis Generation. It takes many, many years of effort and exertion to straighten oneself out. ~GenXer

        http://memegenerator.net/instance/22063522

        The young man can perhaps begin by studying the real effects of malnutrition, which is the problem in most of the world where modern agriculture and livestock have been denied. He should also try to look into the Great Leap, which was a period in Chinese history in which the Collectivist gov’t “transformed the economy,” and agriculture, top-down. This is enough homework for now. Or perhaps he could rip out the wiring in his house and replace it, all by his self. He might then be humbled enough to realize he has been totally fooled into thinking he is ready to “transform” the economy.

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