The Franklin Junto

Civility Rediscovered

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Betsy DeVos Gets Mansplained

I want to take a deeper look at a quick exchange that happened during Betsy DeVos’ confirmation hearing.  I don’t want to debate all of Trump, or even all of DeVos’ confirmation hearing.  Instead, I’ll focus on a brief interchange… Continue Reading →

Thoughts on Scott Alexander’s Voucher Take

Scott Alexander over at Slate Star Codex writes about vouchers, charters, and how to help public education.  He gets a lot right, and I (as usual) like his analysis, but in this case I think he is missing some of… Continue Reading →

Journalism’s Path Forward

It strikes me that there probably weren’t many food critics in pre-history.  When all you have time to do is kill and eat your food, you can’t afford to be picky; this is just an extension of the maxim “beggars can’t… Continue Reading →

An Open Letter To Various Republican Leaders

To Various Republican Leaders: My name is Benjamin Pacini, and I work as an assistant principal in Washington D.C. public schools.  I believe fiercely in the principles of free trade, free markets, and limited government.  Until recently, I was a… Continue Reading →

A Plea to my Clinton-Supporting Friends: Encourage the Johnson/Weld Campaign

This message is for the people who had the “I’m With Her” bumper stickers on their cars a year ago. Or nine. My goal isn’t to get you to vote for Gary Johnson, though I wouldn’t complain.  I like Johnson.  He’s… Continue Reading →

Brexit: Some Numbers for the Math Teacher

Great read, Ben. I think you honestly reflect a lot of my own thinking on the issue though not entirely. I also like the way you framed everything with expected values as it clarifies how to think about the issues…. Continue Reading →

Brexit: Math Teacher Edition

When I was in college, my economics professors taught me a neat little trick.  It’s called “expected value” and works something like this: The “expected value” of a game is the average value of many repeated experiments. Here’s a simple example…. Continue Reading →

So Trump. Now what?

Donald Trump will win the Republican nomination. What is a freedom-lover to do? The answer should be obvious: Apostatize. To clarify: I am not advocating some hesitant toe-dipping in the lake of heresy. I am advocating enthusiastically jumping with both feet… Continue Reading →

Saying What Shouldn’t Need Saying: BYU, Rape, and Civility

“(The Devil) always sends errors into the world in pairs – pairs of opposites. And he always encourages us to spend a lot of time thinking which is the worse.” –C.S. Lewis I’ll get to the BYU controversy in a… Continue Reading →


Civility is taking a beating.  That’s why this Junto matters.  When I see articles or publications that show as much, I’ll include them here, with the hashtag #whythejunto.  Feel free to send your own in as well.  I’ll update this… Continue Reading →

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