Student Loans

5 Second Rule SpongeBobWe all know the rule. If you drop food on the floor and pick it up in less than five seconds, the food gods will keep it safe from the germs, microorganisms and general dirt-laden carnage on the floor.  The rule has expanded beyond food; I have personally witnessed a young mother scoop up her progeny’s pacifier from the floor and pop it back in the baby’s mouth and shout out, “Five-Second Rule!”  And that makes it OK.

Turns out, according to a study conducted at Ashton University in Birmingham, England, the five-second rule actually has some research-driven science behind its validity. Not that I really needed evidence to support my own personal comfort with the five-second rule, but I do feel somewhat better now.

Cocaine and the sexual habits of quail,

Cocaine and the sexual habits of quail

But not all research conducted by American universities (whose funding comes from the taxpayers albeit through government agencies) is as valuable. Consider some of the grants that have been funded for research at our illustrious institutions of higher education, like the 2010 award of $181,406 to Dr. Chana Atkins at the University of Kentucky to study how cocaine enhances the sex drive of Japanese quail, courtesy of the National Institutes of Health.

Not sure who wrote that grant, but I would like them to write a grant for the study of stupid studies at American Universities. And the justification for quail grant, which I am sure was written much more eloquently in the Statement of Need, was that there appears to be a tendency for people who use cocaine to engage in risky sexual behaviors. Really? And the birds, turns out Japanese quail have sex a lot in the lab, even without the cocaine.

Student LoansThe government just released the new amount for Pell Grants next year – $5,730.

That means that if the Department of Education would have given this money to deserving students instead of buying cocaine for horny birds, thirty-one more students could have had the opportunity to go to school.

That makes my head hurt.  Maybe Dr. Atkins would like to research that?

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