34 amazing first lines of famous books.

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ever wonder how to get your book reviewed?

Ever wonder “How to get my book reviewed”?

So you’ve published your book. Its been edited and published, and now you’re trying to figure out how to get to your potential readers. While starting your marketing campaign usually happens well More »

‘People are hungry for real bookstores’: Judy Blume on why US indie booksellers are growing

At 78, the multimillion-selling author has begun a new career, opening her own bookshop and joining a business sector thats flourishing again in the US   She might be a beloved and More »

movies from books

Read more: http://imgur.com/gallery/U92KfkM

Fox Military Guest: Torture Is Good, It Worked on John McCain

According to a frequent Fox Business Network military commentator, torture is good because it worked on Sen. John McCain (R-AZ).

McCain, who was tortured while a prisoner of war in Vietnam, has been outspoken in opposing Gina Haspel, President Trumps pro-torture nominee to lead the Central Intelligence Agency.

Appearing Thursday morning on the Fox Business Network, retired Air Force Lt. Gen. Thomas McInerney took an ugly swipe at McCain for his opposition to torture, telling Varney & Co. host Charles Payne: The fact is, is John McCainit worked on John. Thats why they call him Songbird John.

The fact is those methods can work, and they are effective, as former Vice President Cheney said, McInerney continued, in a clip first spotted by Media Matters. And if we have to use them to save a million American lives, we will do whatever we have to.

Contrary to McInerneys claim, however, there is no evidence McCain ever gave up accurate information while being tortured in North Vietnam. In fact, the senator wrote in one of his books, Pressed for more useful information, I gave the names of the Green Bay Packers offensive line, and said they were members of my squadron.

Experienced interrogators frequently cite that story as a demonstration of how ineffective torture is in producing reliable information.

Hours after the segment aired, Payne released a statement apologizing to the McCain family. This morning on a show I was hosting, a guest made a very false and derogatory remark about Senator John McCain. At the time, I had the control room in my ear telling me to wrap the segment, and did not hear the comment. I regret I did not catch this remark, as it should have been challenged. As a proud military veteran and son of a Vietnam Vet these words neither reflect my or the networks feelings about Senator McCain, or his remarkable service and sacrifice to this country.

McInerney, once a top TV pitchman for President George W. Bushs Iraq War, recently served as a paid analyst on Fox News. He is no longer in that position, but continues to make frequent appearances across both Fox News and Fox Business, and has a penchant for outlandish claims related to military and foreign policy.

The former number-three commander of the Air Force was a frequent source of birther conspiracies about President Obama, often suggesting he was secretly a radical Muslim.

I feel I have an obligation to the American people to be a part of the discourse and discuss these important national security issues because they are complex, especially on radical Islam, McInerney told The Daily Beast shortly before appearing at a 2016 Trump rally. As a nation we have not had it. We have a president that has suppressed it.

McInerney also infamously claimed on Fox News that missing passenger jet MH370 was actually hijacked by terrorists and flown to Pakistan to be used for jihadist activities.

More recently, in late 2017, while appearing on Fox News star Sean Hannitys radio show, McInerney dismissed host concerns about how millions could potentially die in a U.S. war with North Korea: Yeah, but they'll be mostly North Koreans, the retired lieutenant general said.

Correction: Fox News pointed out that McInerney has not been a paid analyst for nearly a year.

Read more: https://www.thedailybeast.com/fox-news-military-analyst-torture-is-good-it-worked-on-john-mccain

20+ Times People Couldnt Believe Their Luck In Thrift Stores, Flea Markets And Garage Sales

If you think thrift stores, yard sales, and flea markets are filled with nothing but piles of junk, you’re missing out. Some incredibly lucky people discover the best things there, but those who search second-hand shops without finding the things they’re looking for usually stumble upon the next best thing – laughter. Bored Panda has collected some of the funniest thrift store finds ever, and the pictures will definitely make you run to that garage sale you walked by.

From “unusual” chocolate molds that look like pee pees to stoner books disguised as reads about cats, these gems were probably bought the second they drew the buyers’ attention. Scroll down to check out the hilarious items and upvote your faves!


Mythbuster Adam Savage Has Made a Bag, and It’s Beautiful

Adam Savage is clearly overjoyed about his new bag. I met up with the gear-obsessed designer, former Mythbusters host, and Tested.com editor in chief at his workshop in San Francisco to see his latest creation. He's designed his first carryall utility bag, the EDC One, and launched a new brand, Savage Industries, to market it. With the same childlike glee he exudes on camera, Savage flipped the thing around on the workbench, opening and closing it, zipping and unzipping, as he pointed out all the features.

Yes, the bag is white. It only comes in white, at least for now.

It's constructed almost entirely out of upcycled cloth from boat sails, so each bag has some unique quirks, and every specimen comes off the production line with a broken-in look. The handles are held together by magnets instead of snaps or velcro, which, if you've fiddled with those types of closures on your own bag, is a welcome innovation. You just bring the handles near one another and they jump together with a satisfying clonk. Also clever: The straps are stiff enough that the clasped handle stays propped upright like a little pup tent frame. Unzip and pry open the bag, and it holds its shape in that configuration too, thanks to a pair of spring steel inserts that run around the lip and keep the mouth agape like the jaw of a whale shark.

There's a pocket inside to hold your notebooks (Savage adores Tom Sachs Ten Bullets notebooks, though he says his pocket is brand-agnostic) and, via a stack of horizontal loops, your pens and pencils. On the Kevlar-reinforced bottom, there are strips of velcro. This detail hints at accessories to come, like some padded bays for camera equipment or a waterproof bucket-like insert for toting a 12-pack.

Savage Industries

Savage designed it so it could carry absolutely everything he needs for a day, from tools to books to lunch. He says he drew inspiration from two places: First is the old tool case he used when employed as a model-builder at Industrial Light & Magic. It too had the clamshell top that flopped open for full access to the goods inside. He's tried to find something like it on the market, but he was disappointed enough in the options to just build his own version. The other inspiration is the purse given to Apollo astronauts on the missions to the moon. Called the Temporary Stowage Bag or, colloquially, the McDivitt Purse, this tote was mostly forgotten until Neil Armstrong's widow discovered it while going through her recently deceased husband's belongings. Savage borrowed a few elements from the NASA design—the simple shape, the steel closure, and the near-total absence of pigment.

None More White

Yes, the bag is white. It only comes in white, at least for now. It's striking, but it seems impractical for something that's bound to soak up dirt and grime and oil. Savage sells me on it. It will develop a patina, and patinas are cool. Also, you can't find tools at the bottom of a black bag, he says. He certainly didn't want to make something that fell in line with the current fashion trend of "tactical" and "urban camo" that seems to dominate bags and accessories. A white bag stands out as unique. It isn't hyper-masculine like the ubiquitous Cordura messenger. Rather, it's almost feminine, or at least nonbinary.

Savage has been sewing since he was in middle school (he regularly makes his own costumes) but for this project the heavy lifting and stitching was done by Mafia, a company also based in San Francisco that makes a whole line of gorgeous bags primarily out of recycled sailcloth. Mafia has produced a few hundred Savage bags for this first run, and each one gets Mafia's standard lifetime warranty.

The bags are available on Savage's website. Each costs $225. Once the first run sells out, they'll go on backorder until Mafia can catch up. Each one will be hand-numbered for extra collector cred.

So this is a new brand, this Savage Industries. There's more to come, Adam says: a smaller version of this bag and a larger one too, though the big version will still be sized to meet FAA regulations for carry-ons. What else? He wouldn't say, beyond these bags and the accessories that will Velcro into them. Whatever arrives next, I just hope it comes in white.

Read more: https://www.wired.com/story/savage-industries-bag/

‘Describe yourself like a male author would’ becomes a hilarious Twitter challenge

Read more: https://www.dailydot.com/unclick/describe-like-male-author-becomes-twitter-thread/

Trump Aims Directly at Mueller in Ramped-Up Criticism of Probe

  • Firing of FBI’s McCabe prompts president to attack the bureau
  • McCabe may have evidence that could prolong Mueller’s probe

President Donald Trump made his most direct attack to date on the Justice Department’s investigation into Russian election meddling being led by Special Counsel Robert Mueller, the latest sign that a showdown may be brewing over the probe.

“Why does the Mueller team have 13 hardened Democrats, some big Crooked Hillary supporters, and Zero Republicans,” Trump said early Sunday on Twitter. “Does anyone think this is fair?”

In other tweets, the president questioned the integrity of former FBI Director James Comey and former Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe. “Wow, watch Comey lie under oath,” Trump said. He also said that accounts kept by McCabe and Comey detailing their interactions with him were “Fake Memos.” McCabe, said Trump, “never took notes when he was with me.”

John Dowd, Trump’s personal lawyer, said on Saturday that Mueller’s investigation should be shut down after the late-Friday firing of McCabe by Attorney General Jeff Sessions. Trump’s response since then suggests he’s lost patience with the months-long investigation that’s cast a dark shadow over his presidency.

Trump’s lawyers, who’ve been negotiating terms for Mueller to interview the president, had assured their client for most of last year that the investigation would wrap up by the end of 2017, said a person familiar with the matter. Trump was talked out of firing Mueller back in June, but there are strong signals that the special counsel and his team of 17 prosecutors have at least several months more work ahead of them.

“The Mueller probe should never have been started in that there was no collusion and there was no crime,” Trump said Saturday, using Mueller’s name in a tweet for the first time. “It was based on fraudulent activities and a Fake Dossier paid for by Crooked Hillary and the DNC, and improperly used in FISA COURT for surveillance of my campaign. WITCH HUNT!”

Firestorm Possible

Any move to fire Mueller is expected to ignite a political firestorm in Washington. Democrats have warned of a constitutional crisis, and even most Senate Republicans have cautioned Trump against doing anything to curtail the special counsel’s investigation.

It’s unclear whether Republicans would take steps to rein the president in if he took drastic action, although some, including Senator Marco Rubio of Florida, said on Sunday that McCabe’s firing was wrong.

Senator Jeff Flake of Arizona, a frequent critic of Trump, said Sunday that removing Mueller would be “a massive red line that can’t be crossed.” Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina repeated a previous comment that removing Mueller would be the beginning of the end of Trump’s presidency.

Republican leaders have been silent so far, although Speaker Paul Ryan issued a statement through spokeswoman Ashlee Strong: “As the speaker has always said, Mr. Mueller and his team should be able to do their job.”

McCabe’s firing also adds fresh fuel to Mueller’s probe. Michael Bromwich, a former Justice Department attorney now serving as one of McCabe’s lawyers, said that the veteran FBI agent was fired after the disclosure that he’s a cooperating witness against Trump. McCabe documented his interactions with Trump in a series of memos, according to a person familiar with the matter, and those memos could play into Mueller’s investigation. The memos have been provided to the special counsel’s office, according to AP.

Your Guide to Understanding the Trump-Russia Saga: QuickTake

Now that McCabe has lost his job and possibly a substantial portion of the pension accrued in more than two decades with the FBI, he has little reason not to speak out — starting with the lengthy statement Friday night where he noted that he could “corroborate former Director Comey’s accounts of his discussions with the president.”

McCabe is “a loose cannon right now. Talk about a guy who has nothing to lose — literally, nothing to lose,” said Jeffrey Cramer, a former federal prosecutor who’s now managing director of the international investigation firm Berkeley Research Group LLC. “If he was holding anything back out of loyalty to the FBI or a sense of duty, well that just walked out the door. If he has any information he hasn’t revealed out of a sense of loyalty, that might be told now.”

Comey, meanwhile, is about to embark on a high-profile publicity tour and series of television interviews to promote his memoir, “A Higher Loyalty: Truth, Lies and Leadership,” which is being released on April 17. “Mr. President, the American people will hear my story very soon,” Comey said Saturday in a tweet. “And they can judge for themselves who is honorable and who is not.”

‘No Collusion’

The White House on Saturday did nothing to clear up the confusion about Trump’s stance toward Mueller’s probe.

“I pray that Acting Attorney General Rosenstein will follow the brilliant and courageous example of the FBI Office of Professional Responsibility and Attorney General Jeff Sessions and bring an end to alleged Russia Collusion investigation manufactured by McCabe’s boss James Comey based upon a fraudulent and corrupt Dossier,” Dowd said in an emailed statement early in the day.

Dowd quickly clarified that he was speaking for himself, not for the president. Even so, Trump cheered the firing of McCabe, calling the FBI corrupt, and claiming the House Intelligence Committee found “there was no collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign.” The full committee released no such finding, although Republicans on the panel said they found no evidence of collusion.

Sekulow’s Show

The White House didn’t respond to multiple requests for comment. White House lawyers have said in the past they plan to cooperate fully with Mueller’s probe, but Trump’s other personal lawyer, Jay Sekulow, has used his daily radio show to chip away at Mueller’s investigation for months.

The show, which Sekulow has broadcast for more than two decades to an audience of more than 1.5 million daily listeners, has become a key venue for challenging the basis for Mueller’s investigation. Sekulow has regularly attacked the credibility of McCabe and other FBI officials looking into Russian election meddling, as well as the use of a surveillance warrant against a Trump campaign adviser.

Democrats said they were alarmed by the latest attacks on the investigation.

“Any attempt by the president to obstruct or remove the special counsel would create a constitutional crisis and represent an attack on the core American principle that nobody, including the president of the United States, is above the law,” warned Democratic Senator Chris Coons of Delaware.

The president can’t fire Mueller directly, since he answers to the Justice Department official who appointed him, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. Usually a special counsel would report to the attorney general, but Sessions recused himself from the inquiry because he advised and supported Trump’s 2016 campaign. But Trump still has options.

Can Trump Fire the Special Counsel? A QuickTake Q&A

A series of potentially pivotal events are on the horizon for the investigation. Beyond a possible interview of the president, Mueller still hasn’t had wide-ranging interviews with members of Trump’s family who were witnesses to some of the issues he’s investigating.

While Mueller is believed to be nearing the end of his investigation into whether Trump obstructed justice, he may hold off on releasing any conclusion until other parts of his probe are settled, current and former officials said.

Mueller also appears to be looking into Trump’s business, including asking witnesses about a proposed Trump Tower Moscow. The New York Times reported Mueller issued a subpoena for documents to the Trump Organization several weeks ago. Dowd had previously said it would be outside Mueller’s mandate to probe into Trump’s business dealings. He declined to comment on the subpoena.

Obstruction Case

Given McCabe’s role as an important witness with details about the firing of Comey, his termination could add to — but not derail — an obstruction of justice case, said William Yeomans, a 26-year Justice Department veteran who’s served as an acting assistant attorney general.

“If anybody had any doubts about the integrity of this process, they were put to rest by the president’s tweet, which basically announced he had forced this, and it was a good thing that this long-serving FBI employee who had done some wonderful things during his career was going to be forced out two days before he qualified for his retirement,” Yeomans said in an interview.

Sessions fired McCabe ahead of his planned retirement on Sunday at age 50, a move that Trump celebrated on Twitter as a “a great day for Democracy.” Sessions said he was responding to a report by the Justice Department’s inspector general and finding by the FBI’s Office of Professional Responsibility. Those offices found that McCabe hadn’t been fully forthcoming with investigators in discussing his contacts with a reporter, according to a person familiar with the matter.

McCabe, who joined the FBI in 1996, became a Republican target partly because he helped oversee the investigation into Democrat Hillary Clinton’s email practices in 2016, even though his wife had accepted donations from Democratic political organizations during a losing campaign for the Virginia state Senate the previous year.

“How many hundreds of thousands of dollars was given to wife’s campaign by Crooked H friend, Terry M, who was also under investigation?” Trump said in an earlier tweet. Twitter. “How many lies? How many leaks? Comey knew it all, and much more!”

Read more: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-03-17/trump-mueller-showdown-looms-as-lawyer-urges-end-to-russia-probe

Another Round of 20 Lord of the Rings Facts That You Should Know (Part 3)

Part three of these LotR facts lists. I guarantee you’ll learn something and end up going back to read the books again anyways. 

Part 1

Part 2

Read more: http://cheezburger.com/1660933/another-round-of-20-lord-of-the-rings-facts-that-you-should-know-part-3

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These teachers work up to 6 jobs. Now they’re fed up and ready to walk out

(CNN)Craig Troxell steps precariously across a customer’s roof, marking hail damage from yet another Oklahoma storm. He still smells of the freshly cut grass from the swanky side of town, where he had just mowed lawns to make a few extra dollars.

“Teacher morale gets worse every year,” said Troxell, who also drives a school bus before and after school. “I’ve heard a lot of my (teacher) acquaintances walk away and get a different job. They don’t want to do it anymore.”

    Why Craig Troxell still teaches in Oklahoma

Oklahoma is among the bottom three states for teacher salaries, where educators often work about 10 years before reaching the $40,000 salary mark. And they haven’t gotten a raise from the state in 10 years.
While educators nationwide have seen slight paycheck bumps over the past decade, when adjusted for inflation, teachers have actually lost 3% of their income from 2006 to 2016, according to the National Education Association.
Lawmakers agreed on an average teacher raise of $6,100, $1,250 for support staff and a $50 million increase in education funding — a measure Gov. Mary Fallin signed into law Thursday.
But many teachers say it’s not enough. So on Monday, Troxell and thousands of other teachers will walk out — prompting some schools to shut down indefinitely.
    “We’re at the end of the rope,” Troxell said.
    He’s far from alone. Several teachers told CNN they’re working multiple jobs in food delivery, retail, rideshare driving, restaurants and even surrogate pregnancy to pay the bills. Some now rely on a food bank to feed their own children.

    The teacher with six jobs

    Almost every morning, Jonathan Moy’s two daughters ask him the same heartbreaking question:
    “Are we going to see you today?”
    He gets visibly emotional thinking about how many days he tells them no.
    “It’s really tough when your daughters get sad because you tell them you’re not going to see them,” said Moy, 40. “And it almost breaks your heart, because it’s not their fault. It’s not my fault. It’s the situation that we’re in.”
    Moy teaches high school algebra, drives a school bus in the afternoon, coaches football and wrestling, umpires Little League baseball and drives for rideshare services.
    All of that combined, Moy said, brings home about $36,000 a year after taxes.
    “Last night I drove Lyft and Uber for six, seven hours,” Moy said. “When you have to do that to help supplement your income, it’s tough when you don’t get home when your kids go to bed.”
      But he fights off the exhaustion by the time the bell rings at Yukon High School, just west of Oklahoma City. As 32 teenagers fill his classroom, Moy’s demeanor is as cheerful as the yellow and blue lights strung all across his ceiling.
      “Half of teaching is having them just enjoy coming into school,” Moy said. “If you can actually get them to enjoy coming into your classroom with your atmosphere, your jokes or just having a good time, that’s half the battle.”
      When explaining a new algebra concept, Moy draws analogies to jelly beans and tacos. He plays “Hotel California” and “Roll With It” as students practice factoring polynomials.
      Moy’s unorthodox style has paid off.
        “I was looking at your STAR (standardized) test we took,” he told his class of mostly freshmen. “You started the year at a 7th grade level. Now you’re above a 12th.”
        Freshman Zach Ennis said Moy has made algebra easier to learn.
        “I really like him, he’s a really good teacher. He explains stuff really good,” Ennis said.
        Ennis said he supports his teacher walking out next week, even though he might have to make up school days in the summer.
        “It’s kind of sad that he has to do that many jobs,” Ennis said. “He should be able to concentrate just on teaching.”

          What drives Jonathan Moy to stay in education

        Moy said he wants to keep teaching in Oklahoma, where he was born and raised. But he and his wife Kendra, who’s an elementary school teacher, can’t understand why educators in their state are paid so little compared to neighboring Texas and Arkansas.
        “The salary in Fort Worth (Texas) is starting at $51,000 to work at Fort Worth public schools,” Moy said. “In Oklahoma, the starting pay is $31,000. And even if you’ve been teaching 25, 30 years, it’s really tough to get to that level of income as a teacher.”
        Despite their meager incomes, the Moys said they spend a combined $2,000 on their classrooms each year — including crayons and glue sticks for Kendra Moy’s 3rd grade students. At her school, the entire student body qualifies for free or reduced lunch.
          Their 10-year-old daughter Karlie said she wishes her dad could go to more of her basketball and softball games. But she understands why he keeps teaching and working so many jobs.
          “I just want him to do what he likes,” she said. “He’s just trying to help our family out.”

          The teacher who’s also a surrogate mother

          When Allyson Kubat started teaching at Mustang High School, the school had no debate program.
          Just three years after launching one, Kubat’s getting ready to take her undefeated debate team to the most elite tournament this June.
          “We’re going to nationals this year, which is kind of crazy,” said Kubat, 29.
          It will be her final act as a teacher.
          “I decided, as hard as it is, that next year I’m not going to be teaching anymore,” Kubat said.
          She realized the 60 to 90 hours a week she works to support her kids meant that she rarely got to see her kids. The epiphany came when her 9-year-old daughter called her after school one day.
          “She said, ‘Mom, are you coming home today? Or are you going back to work?’ Because I leave work (at the school) and I go to my second job, or my third job, and I don’t get home until she’s in bed or almost in bed.”
          Kubat’s other jobs include event coordinating, food delivery and surrogate motherhood — a venture that puts a significant strain on her body but pays more than her teaching salary of about $33,000.
          “One of my students asked, ‘So what’s your other job?’ Because the kids in this state know that their teachers are not just teachers,” she said. “They know that we have to do something else to survive.”
          Her husband, Clint, is an office manager who doesn’t make much more than his wife’s teaching salary. Before she started her second surrogate pregnancy this week, he said, the couple had already budgeted for that income.
          After this school year, Kubat will become a full-time event planner — a bittersweet move, given how passionately she loves teaching.
          “It is hard to give up what I’ve worked so hard to become,” Kubat said. But she’s tired of sacrificing crucial family time for teaching.
          “It’s time to stop being a martyr.”

          The rookie teacher and waitress

          By 8 a.m., Jennifer Winchester is teaching language arts to 5th graders. By 8 p.m., she’s hoisting trays of enchiladas at a Mexican restaurant.
          As a first-year teacher, Winchester “always understood” she would struggle financially.
          “In college, they would show us the pay increments … from zero to 25 years,” Winchester said.
          She said a guest speaker came into her college class and “literally begged us to stay in Oklahoma,” telling prospective teachers to think of the kids and realize “it’s not their fault.”
          So Winchester pursued her passion, even if it meant moonlighting as a server to help pay the bills.
          “I can remember back in the 4th grade, my teacher told my mom at a parent-teacher conference, ‘If she doesn’t become a teacher, I’ll be very disappointed.’ Even in the classroom, I’d help other students,” Winchester recalled.
          Now, as a professional teacher, she again finds herself going the extra mile for students. Despite her $31,000 teaching salary, she spent about $1,200 getting her classroom in shape for this school year, buying new shelves and books and replacing worn-out desks.
          “I tried to stop tracking those receipts, because it depresses me,” she said.

            Why Jennifer Winchester wants to keep teaching

          Winchester’s long-term goal is to be a high school counselor. But she doesn’t want to take on a master’s degree in counseling until she’s paid off her $23,000 in student loans.
          For now, she’s hoping her nearly 10-year-old car “with as many dents as you can find in it” doesn’t break down, since that could spell financial disaster.
          She fantasizes about owning a slightly nicer car one day.
          “My goal is to have automatic windows and locks,” she said.

          The teacher with 2 degrees and 2 mall jobs

          Shontée Branton has bachelor’s and master’s degrees in early childhood education. But when she gets to the checkout lane at the grocery store, she has to turn around.
          “In my mind, I’m like, ‘What do I need to put back?’ Because I know I can’t afford all of this,” said the 1st-grade teacher at Epperly Heights Elementary.
          “Maybe I want the strawberries, but I can make it without.”
          Branton, who’s been teaching for nine years, said she makes about $36,000 a year.
          She supplements that by tutoring, teaching summer school and working at Macy’s — both on the retail floor and in the human resources office.
          “Normally, I leave from the school and go straight to Macy’s and clock in,” she said. ‘”There’s times I leave my house at 7 in the morning, and I don’t come home until 10 o’clock at night.”
          That’s when her 3rd-floor apartment looks more like a mountain summit.
          “I literally come home and sit in my car for 30 minutes because I can’t muster the strength to go up the stairs,” she said.
          Branton said she’s thinking about moving to Texas, where a teacher with her experience and education can earn about $20,000 more a year. But she feels a calling to teach in Del City, where she grew up and where all the students at her school qualify for free or reduced lunch.
          “I grew up with a single-parent home; both parents struggled with drug abuse,” she said. “When I see those kids, I see myself. And I had a teacher or two who believed in me.”
          Branton said she’s walking out Monday not just for teachers’ raises, but for another key demand: more funding for education in the state. She said she never wants to teach an overstuffed class of 34 students with only 25 textbooks again.
          “A lot of people are saying we’re walking out on our kids. And that’s been one of the most hurtful things, because we feel like we’re walking for our children,” Branton said.
          “People are expecting us to do a job without the proper resources. And not only is it not fair to educators, it’s not fair to the kids.”

            Why Shontée Branton still teaches

          “It would have to be the kids. I mean, that’s non-negotiable,” Branton said. “Yes, I need more money. I’m tired of working multiple jobs. But in the grand scheme of things, if we educate these kids, then that’s better for society.”
          If neither of those demands are fully met, Branton said, Oklahoma could lose yet another teacher.
          “If it’s not passed, I probably will leave,” she said. “It would be the hardest choice.”

          The state superintendent’s response

          Joy Hofmeister says the teachers’ frustration is justified.
          “Our teachers are right — they have been underpaid,” the state superintendent said. “We know that the frustration is high, that it’s something that comes after a decade-long reduction to public education funding.”

          The Oklahoma teachers’ union wants:

          • $10,000
          • raises for teachers

          • $5,000
          • raises for support staff, such as janitors and cafeteria workers

          • $200 million
          • in education funding

          What just got signed into law:

          • Average teacher raises of $6,100
          • $1,250 raises for support staff
          • $50 million
          • in education funding

          But “the legislature can’t reverse in one bill the cuts that have come over a decade.”
          She said the main reason why it’s been so difficult to increase spending for teachers and education is because in 1992, the state constitution was changed to require a supermajority approval — 75% of the legislature — before taxes could be raised.
          “It’s been 28 years since Oklahoma has raised taxes,” Hofmeister said. “We’ve been operating with the same dollars as 2008, but with more than 50,000 more students.”
          She said it’s “unconscionable” that some teachers work three to six jobs to make ends meet.
          “Our teachers deserve better,” she said. “And that was answered with this historic teacher pay raise. This is an important step forward. But it’s not the only thing that is needed.”

          The food bank that serves teachers

          Lori Decter Wright admits there’s a stereotype about those who rely on food banks. Maybe they work at fast-food restaurants. Maybe they got hit with an unexpected medical bill.
          Then, starting around 2015, she noticed a shocking trend: teachers, including some with master’s degrees, also needed supplies of cereal, beans and canned vegetables.
          “We have teachers near the poverty level,” said Decter Wright, executive director of Kendall Whittier, Inc. — a ministry that runs an emergency food pantry in Tulsa.
          “I really had to start asking the question, ‘What is going on in Oklahoma that full-time, working professional teachers have to rely on services like ours to make ends meet?”
          Michael Turner is one of the teachers who came in to the food pantry, embarrassed that he needed assistance.
          “You’re used to taking care of yourself. No one likes to ask for help, and that’s pretty tough,” said Turner, a recently divorced father of a special needs daughter.
          Turner said he “answered a call to action” when he became a special needs teacher.
          “There was a big push in the state of Oklahoma to hire veterans to teach special ed at the middle school level,” he said.
          “It’s very, very difficult to be a teacher … I knew that it was hard, but teaching today is much more difficult.”
          And when he comes home to his own child, he faces the guilt of seeing a kitchen pantry with empty shelves.
          Turner says he’s grateful for the food bank’s assistance and regrets not reaching out for help months earlier.
          “I always fought the notion that I would be the one asking for services, asking for help,” he said. “I’d much rather be giving it.”

          Read more: https://www.cnn.com/2018/03/31/us/oklahoma-teachers-profiles/index.html

          Can Ghostbusters copy Pokmon GOs success with its own AR mobile game?

          You’ll soon be able to trap Ghostbusters ghosts in augmented reality à la Pokémon GO.

          A short demo of the game Ghostbusters World was showcased at Google’s MWC booth, highlighting functionality made possible by the public release of Google’s ARCore augmented reality platform. Details are pretty slim for a wide release date other than it’s “coming 2018.”

          The title will call on ghosts from the franchise’s “films, TV shows, comic books, theme parks, and video games” according to a press release. Ghostbusters is obviously no Pokémon when it comes to the cult following behind it, but the game does seem like it could have some pretty similar gameplay to Pokémon GO when it launches.

          The studio behind the title, South Korea-based publisher FourThirtyThree Inc., has launched a number of popular games, including Blade for Kakao, Monster Super League and Seven Guardians. The studio primarily seems to dabble in RPG-style video games, and early footage makes it seem as though this mechanic will be present in Ghostbusters World. The title was also developed in conjunction with Sony Pictures Entertainment Consumer Products and Ghost Corps.

          For what it’s worth from the short video they’ve shown, it does really showcase what AR can add to the game, and how much more integrated with the environment the game is than past AR titles. Whether the title will embrace the location-based community style that made Pokémon GO a bit of a cultural phenomenon is unclear.

          Though the announcement was made in conjunction with Google, the game will also be coming to iOS. The developers will be making more announcements about the game at next month’s Game Developers Conference.

          Read more: https://techcrunch.com/2018/02/23/can-ghostbusters-copy-pokemon-gos-success-with-its-own-ar-mobile-game/

          Queen Elizabeth II Formally Blesses Prince Harry & Meghan Markle’s Upcoming Wedding Here’s Everything We Know!

          May 19 can’t come soon enough!!

          Clearly, the royal wedding planners are working around the clock, as new deets about Prince Harry and Meghan Markle‘s nuptials drop every day. Most recently, it was revealed that Queen Elizabeth II gave her formal consent for her “beloved grandson” to marry the Suits actress.

          Related: Meghan Was Kidnapped As Part Of Her Royal Training!

          As Harry is (currently) fifth in line for the throne, he’s required by law to secure the monarch’s permission before wedding anyone. While we knew the approval was coming, as the Windsors are planning and hosting the lavish affair, the British queen only JUST made her consent public.

          In a court circular, the 91-year-old declared:

          “I declare My Consent to a Contract of Matrimony between my Most Dearly Beloved Grandson Prince Henry Charles Albert David of Wales and Rachel Meghan Markle, which Consent I am causing to be signified under the Great Seal and to be entered in the Books of the Privy Council.”

          YASSSSS. For everything else we know about the royal wedding, be sure to ch-ch-check out the video (above)!!

          Read more: http://perezhilton.com/2018-03-15-queen-elizabeth-ii-blesses-prince-harry-meghan-markle-wedding-everything-we-know-details-video

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