Running Away or Running Toward?

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I was explicitly forbidden to run. I was not allowed to just throw in the towel and hit the escape key. I had to have a plan, or at least enough determined passion and enthusiasm to placate my pare…

Source: Running Away or Running Toward?

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The Uncanny is Migrating to Medium

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The New Uncanny

The New Uncanny

The Uncanny is moving over.  This move will make it easier for anyone to contribute ideas, art, short clips.

Invitation: Write for The Uncanny

Are you interested in trying to get deeper into ideas, into how things work — or don’t? Are you interested in trying to find meaning where there doesn’t seem to be any?

And are you interested in trying to explore ideas beyond what we hear, what we see, what we’re told is the new normal?

This is an open invitation to writers interested at looking deeper at strange current events, different ideas, and trying to lay the path for fresh trends in media, politics, education, sports and entertainment, the environment — new ideas for us.

I am interested in challenging orthodox ideas. I am interested in finding a way through what seems to be an impenetrable and weighty status quo.

The original Uncanny is a WordPress site of 215 stories, if you care to learn how and when all this began.

Now migrated to Medium, The Uncanny is an invitation to collaborate, contribute and critique any and all ideas pertaining to the dramatic reality we seem to be living.

What will the other end of this transition look like? What do you want it to look like? What should we consider? What good ideas about navigating through this period are out there?

The new Uncanny contains most of the old stories. Some of my own work can be found in The Policy as well.

I will consider a broad range of stories and ideas, images, very short clips, art, inclusive of cartoons.

I can be reached here: hector j vila I really look forward to hearing from you.

One Nation, Divided by Education & the 2016 Presidential Quagmire

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Apartheid Education

Apartheid Education

Education — with a capital E — has effectively divided the nation. Education has been eating away at the fiber of this country for quite some time. This is quite obvious when examining the 2016 Presidential Election. Yet, Education is not being held accountable for the mess we’re in; it’s getting a pass.

We can get a sense of this by looking, first, at popular media. Second, we can see how obstructionist our Education system really is, and the consequences.

Bill Maher calls Trump supporters idiots. “What we learned,” Maher tells CNN’s Fareed Zakaria, “is that there’s a lot of vulgar, tacky, racist people in this country, more than I thought…A basket of deplorables.”

Read on …

How We Got Into The Mess We’re In : The Moon Illusion & the Question of Thermonuclear War

After the news today, Obama Unlikely to Vow No First Use of Nuclear Weapons, (http://www.nytimes.com/2016/09/06/science/obama-unlikely-to-vow-no-first-use-of-nuclear-weapons.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&clickSource=story-heading&module=first-column-region&region=top-news&WT.nav=top-news&_r=0), it’s worth reblogging since this is, as we speak, the most dangerous of all situations we’re living in!!!!! THIS IS THE PROBLEM that BEGETS ALL OTHER (PROBLEMS)!

The Uncanny

“What I must do is all that concerns me, not what the people think. This rule, equally arduous in actual and in intellectual life, may serve for the whole distinction between greatness and meanness.”

Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Self-Reliance” (1839-1840)


We are more at home with illusion than we are with the reality before us. It seems quite natural for us to walk away from facts when they don’t support our illusions — and our emotional attachments to them. Our minds and our eyes always fool us. We even reject the notion that they do — a catch 22 if there ever was one.

Consider this: Why does the moon look so much bigger when it is near the horizon?

Most scientists agree that the reason the moon looks bigger is purely in our minds. Our mind interprets the things we see in interesting ways.

Like facts.

One theory about the moon illusion says that…

View original post 56 more words

Gabby Douglas and the True Story of the Olympics

Given the way Americans have treated the Lochte case compared to how Americans treated Gaby Douglas, it’s relevant to reblog this piece so that Americans can take stock in what “Gaby Douglas means” to us – and what Lochte never will, other than to show the most negative aspect of white privilege…

The Uncanny

This is may be one of the most significant Olympic Games in history but the story — why is it so important? — has yet to be told. Let’s tell it.

Gabby Douglas — winner of the individual all around gold medal in gymnastics, the team gold (as I write, she failed to medal in the balance beam, a ghastly apparatus, opening the field for Ali Raisman who went on to win a gold in the women’s floor exercise) and the first African American to reach this pinnacle of success — is the perfect way into this Olympic story about the (permanent?) dissolution of boundaries.

Douglas’ story has moved us. It has caused some confusion as well. At the heart of the confusion is the story that’s yet to be told about these Olympic Games. It’s a story of possibilities, of a better, brighter tomorrow. It’s what we’ve…

View original post 1,799 more words

The Elements of Teaching

by popular demand – requests – as schools are about to begin yet another academic year…

The Uncanny

for Shipnia, Brittany, Dane, Becca, Christine, Chris and Amanda and Taylor and Annie — and the countless other young souls that will call themselves new teachers

There is a lot of talk, politically and otherwise, about education reform, but there is little conversation about what teaching actually is — and who the teacher is. What are the elements of teaching?

There is a singular demand on education today, namely that it develop producers — students that will mature to be workers and consumers. This single demand is blind to the sources of this production model, the teachers, and the nature of human culture. Of course, citizens have to be productive, engaging the world creatively, we hope, but this is not the first criteria. There are other requirements. In order for education to be productive — produce productive individuals — it must preserve the health and welfare of teachers…

View original post 1,354 more words

How We Got Into The Mess We’re In : The Moon Illusion & the Question of Thermonuclear War

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“What I must do is all that concerns me, not what the people think. This rule, equally arduous in actual and in intellectual life, may serve for the whole distinction between greatness and meanness.”

Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Self-Reliance” (1839-1840)


We are more at home with illusion than we are with the reality before us. It seems quite natural for us to walk away from facts when they don’t support our illusions — and our emotional attachments to them. Our minds and our eyes always fool us. We even reject the notion that they do — a catch 22 if there ever was one.

Consider this: Why does the moon look so much bigger when it is near the horizon?

Most scientists agree that the reason the moon looks bigger is purely in our minds. Our mind interprets the things we see in interesting ways.

Like facts.

One theory about the moon illusion says that when the moon is near the horizon we perceive it to be farther away from us than when it is high in the sky. But since the moon is actually the same size, our minds make it look bigger when it is near the horizon to compensate for the increased distance.

Like danger.

Continue Reading …