Literacy In The US vs Other Countries

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A new world ranking of countries and their literacy rates puts the United States at 7th. Who’s No. 1? Finland.

The study, conducted by John W. Miller, president of Central Connecticut State University in New Britain, Conn., analyzes  trends in literate behavior and literacy in more than 60 countries. It found that Nordic countries are among the most literate in the world, but countries in the Western Hemisphere didn’t do well.

Here are the rankings:

Miller has concentrated his academic work for four decades on literacy, producing “America’s Most Literate Cities” survey from 2003 to 2014 in collaboration with Central Connecticut’s Center for Public Policy and Social Research.

In a statement, he said: “The factors we examined present a complex and nuanced portrait of a nation’s cultural vitality, and what the rankings strongly suggest and world literacy demonstrates is that these kinds of literate behaviors are critical to the success of individuals and nations in the knowledge-based economics that define our global future.”

The rankings look at variables related to tested literacy achievement — scores on the PIRLS or Progress in International Reading Literacy Study, and on the PISA, Program for International Student Assessment — as well as to literate behavior characteristics. Those include 15 variables grouped in five categories: Libraries, Newspapers, Education System-Inputs, Education System-Outputs and Computer Availability, as well as population, which is used for establishing per capita ratios.

Given that the scores on international students’ tests are questionable measures of how one country really does over another for a variety of reasons, it is fair to wonder how they skew the results of these rankings. Miller addresses the issue somewhat in the statement, saying that the results would be  “very different” if PIRLS and PISA were the only factors.

If, of course, he had only looked at student test scores, it wouldn’t have been much of a literacy ranking.

God Is Calling

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To those that will listen.

We have oceans that are filled in hundreds of millions of tons of trash, cars, boats and submarines that are leaking nuclear radiation.

What happens to metal when it rust? We are left with uncountable tons of this and how about all that radiation?

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Almost all nuclear power plants are located next to the ocean for it’s water and those that aren’t, are located next to major water ways or rivers.

There are millions of tons of old bombs from WWI and WWII laying in the bottom of the ocean because? … They couldn’t figure out what to do with unstable artillery. If it’s unstable, why is it dumped in the ocean?

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There are uncountable gallons of oil in the ocean from oil spills, oil tankers that ruptured, oil rigs in the gulf that have exploded.

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The waters of this planet are a wasteland.

God is calling….

There are governments that cannot control themselves. If they cannot control you, they will control your taxes to control you.

As with the Romans, there are empires that are attempting and successfully taking over other empires.

A population that that is broke is a controlled population that will bow down and bend to a government that threatens to jail you if you do not pay.

God is calling….

There are groups of people – large groups – that are being led by a political group that are uprising to the call of a false narrative. Antifa is one of them. A group that was started in Europe and is now world wide. The shear violence from this group is leaving thousands hospitalized or dead.

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God is calling….

We have a world wide media that feeds us garbage. Big drama equals big financial gains in advertising from the blind.

God is calling….

People are killing each other in the streets for very senseless reasons.

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There are people that will order a meal from a fast food restaurant and if they don’t like the way it looks or taste, they will shoot someone.

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God is calling….To those that will listen.

Futurist Who Predicted 9/11 Says There Will Be A Global Crash By The End Of 2020

Reading Time: 7 minutes

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Donald Trump will win re-election in 2020 just in time for a “global crash,” Aussie property prices still have much further to fall, and Facebook will be dead within a decade.

Chillingly, within the next three years, a popular world leader will be assassinated using autonomous drone technology, sparking an international outcry.

Those are just some of the predictions of futurist Dr Richard Hames — who correctly foresaw 9/11 and the GFC, two of the biggest world events of the past two decades — but they’re not his craziest.

“My craziest prediction is that within the decade we’re going to see almost a revolutionary change in how we think about politics, social enterprise and the economy,” Dr Hames said, citing climate change and the widening gap between rich and poor as key catalysts.

“Governments will seriously consider how they can put a cap on personal wealth, thus challenging the capitalist framework. We will shift our thinking away from growth at all costs to how humanity thrives without growth and even negative growth. Economists will say that’s impossible, but it isn’t if you look at more things than just the economy.”

Dr Hames believes Nordic countries will be the first to make this shift, and “as always Australia will lag by up to a decade”.

“We need to change our thinking so we burst through the threshold,” he said.

“We’re in a gridlock at the moment, unable to solve the problems.”

The Australian-born author and consultant, who describes himself an “anticipatory futurist”, has delved into hundreds of topics ranging from the future of conflict and work to taxation, business and society, food security, international terrorism, smart cities, financial services, health care, science and alternative energy.

To promote his tour of the country, Dr Hames has come out with a number of headline-grabbing pronouncements — including that a second financial crisis is just around the corner.

“Since the global financial crisis none of the structural dynamics have changed, in fact I think they’re getting worse,” Dr Hames said.

“There is going to be a global crash by the end of next year.”

On President Trump’s 2020 prospects, he argues that “a lot of his base is actually falling away but in a number of ways the economy is going better in the US than anyone expected”.

“The Democrats are in disarray, that’s a big part of it,” he said.

“They’re fighting each other. I’m saying with almost 100 per cent certainty that he’s going to get back in.”

House prices in Sydney and Melbourne, meanwhile, could “still fall by around 15-18 per cent over the next two to three years”, Dr Hames argues. He says the latest moves by the prudential regulator to ease lending standards is “just a blip.”

“None of the structural dynamics are changing,” he said.

“The most important thing for getting into the housing market is not affordability of a mortgage, the most difficult thing is attainability, it takes longer and they have to save more for a deposit.”

In terms of investors, Dr Hames says the large flows of “mostly Chinese money that were propping up house prices is drying up”.

“Home ownership has continued to fall since the GFC, and you’re seeing local investors pulling out of rental properties because of low rental yields,” he said.

“It’s all not good. It’s precipitating worse conditions than before the last crash.”

And on the drone assassination, Dr Hames says he is “surprised it hasn’t happened already” — last year, Venezuelan dictator Nicolas Maduro was nearly taken out by two explosive-laden drones.

“The reality of what’s happening in organizations like DARPA (the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency) in the US, they’ve been developing drone swarm technology,” he said.

“There is now the technology to really monitor almost anyone in the world at any time, especially if you’re carrying a mobile phone, and deliver a toxic poison to anyone at all.”

With AI-connected drones now able to fly autonomously and select their own targets, “you’ve just got a world waiting for such an event to happen”.

“I think we’re going to see that very soon, especially given the antagonism between some world leaders and the difficulties between Israel and Palestine and now Iran and the US,” Dr Hames said.

“The Middle East is just ripe for such an event.”

DR HAMES’ 10 ‘WILDCARD’ PREDICTIONS

• “Cryptocurrencies will not go away. There will be a shift away from utility tokens towards sovereign tokens. But tokenised ‘Dapps’ will be the next big wave to disrupt the monopolies of centralized platforms like Google, Facebook and Amazon.”

• “At this stage Donald Trump will probably win the 2020 election and continue in his current manner of tough talk in the form of bluff and counter-bluff.”

• “The new conservative leadership in the UK is seeking a radical neoliberal paradise and will do everything they can to achieve Brexit this Autumn. If they fail the government may well be forced into another referendum on Europe in 2020. If that happens a clear majority of voters could opt to stay in the EU.”

• “A US war with Iran hinges on two factors. Whether John Bolton is ruthless enough to organize a false flag attack on US assets, and whether pressure from Netanyahu persuades Trump to turn Iran into a failed state at war with itself along ethnic and sectarian lines so that it no longer poses a threat to Israel.”

• “Before 2022 there will be an international outcry involving the use of autonomous drone technology to assassinate a popular world leader.”

• “By 2023 Facebook will be renamed Instagram. By 2028 we will not remember either. Facebook will become powerless to stop its own descent.”

• “The long-term future of urban transport is hydrogen fuel cells and not electric vehicles. By 2030, 80 per cent of public transport in Australian cities could be hydrogen-fueled.”

• “By 2025 Australian politicians will realize that carbon emissions are not the main issue of concern for us. Here it is the water cycle and the destruction of the soil that are equally, if not more, important. Fresh water scarcity will be the defining Australian crisis of the 21st century.”

• “By 2035 it will be possible to make almost everything we need from CO2, H2O, sunlight, PV electrolysers, and genetically engineered microbes.”

• “The first country to build commercially viable molten salt uranium and/or thorium fission reactors will be rewarded with a gigantic global engineering company.”