We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Maybe I just have a case of too skeptical for my own good syndrome, with a touch of sick of the bullshit fugue. And maybe a little everybody seems to have a way to scam money from the government but me anxiety. Yeah, there's that.
Indeed, APA members stand to gain from new regulations they lobbied for. In other words, if Til Wykes were an American psychiatrist, he too might be seeing dollar signs in temper tantrums and pot use “disorder.” But when it comes to medicine, America is the special interest state. And make no mistake: this is not the free market at work. It’s what happens when greed and government power commingle under a blanket of good intentions.
(Note Cottontail Rabbit gnawing on my roses. He's my official rose-pruner.) Tree Sparrow, Carolina Wren, Dark Eyed Junco, Cardinal, WT Sparrow, Red Bellied Woodpecker, BC Chickadee, Song Sparrow, Downy Woodpecker, Grey Squirrel (of course), Mourning Dove, Blue Jay.
What made America 'exceptional' is the moral and political vision of its Founders, who clearly understood that a country established on the principles of "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness' was, not only an historical anomoly, but also represented the embodiment of the highest values to which mankind could aspire.
What continues to make America exceptional is the extent to which we still live up to those same values bequeathed to us by a group of exceptional and extraordinary men.
I wrote on January 19 about the appointment at Brooklyn College, my alma mater, of a pro-Palestinian activist – just 1 ½ years into his own PhD studies -- to teach a graduate course on the Middle East. After that the New York State Assemblyman of the district adjoining the college protested in a letter to the college president and copied the Chancellor of the City University of New York (who had also received letters of protest from other influentials).
In reviewing Mr. Petersen-Overton’s writings and professional background, I was alarmed about the slanted nature of his works, as well as what can only be termed as his use of hateful invectives against the State of Israel….Moreover, Mr. Petersen-Overton’s course syllabus reads like a Who’s Who of Palestinian sympathizers and historical revisionists, with no equitable counterbalance….The responsibility of a true academic is to remain objective in imparting information and to allow students to draw their own conclusions. Instead, Mr. Petersen-Overton’s required and recommended reading selections intentionally stifle the passionate discourse of students who would challenge his political ideologies….I ask you, Dr. Gould, is Mr. Petersen-Overton, an overt supporter of terrorism, really the best candidate Brooklyn College could find to teach this course?Surely, you must concede that the answer is a resounding “no.” Indeed, Mr. Petersen-Overton would be better suited for a teaching position at the Islamic University of Gaza.
Here’s the follow-up article. The Assemblyman says, “I am absolutely thrilled that Brooklyn College made the right decision and removed Professor Petersen-Overton from his post.”
So am I.It should still be a serious concern to know more about the appointment, as I originally wrote,
It should be of interest what the vetting procedure is at Brooklyn College to select a pool of well-qualified candidates, the criteria by which Kristofer Petersen was selected to teach the Middle East, and how Petersen compared to other qualified candidates.Academic transparency should not be – nor viewed as – a challenge to academic freedom but rather as its necessary bulwark of credibility.
Here’s the straight forward TV coverage from WPIX-New York.Petersen says on TV, “I have very vocal views in favor of the Palestinian cause for self-determination.” The reporter says that Petersen hopes to rally support from other professors and that he plans to appeal. That would be an opportunity to further reveal the answers to how and why this pro-Palestinian activist was hired, and to reveal the CUNY professors who may believe Petersen is a qualified professor. -- Update: The PoliSci department chair who hired Petersen doth protest. Surprise, not.
Update: A pro-Palestinian supporter of Kristofer Peterson shares Peterson's email to him: “I was not contacted by Brooklyn College administration at any time during their decision-making process. This politically motivated action undermines CUNY’s longstanding legacy as a stalwart defender of academic freedom.” Here's a sample of the graphics that is featured with the writing of this friend of Peterson: "You must act now to stop the Holocaust in Gaza..."
And this one, also from Drudge today, takes the cake - or the sandwich: Rep. Dennis Kucinich sues cafeteria over olive pit in sandwich. I once cracked a tooth in half on an over-done French Fry at McDonalds. Maybe I missed a big payday... but Barrister is an honorable man with still a shred of dignity and decency - I hope.
Remember the bumper sticker: "Please hit me. I need the money"?
New England government was charged with the creation of a moral society. There was nothing that was not its business: how much did a master pay his apprentices? Who celebrated Christmas? Who was cheating on his or her spouse? The duty of government was to make society live right; the university, the pulpit, the newspaper — these were to be the allies of government in the struggle for good.
Even after the old alliance between church and state in New England was broken up for good (the establishment of religion at the state level lasted almost 50 years after the ratification of the Constitution in Massachusetts and Connecticut) the acolytes of New England righteousness worked to make the American government a force for the moral uplift of the American people. Many of their causes today look prescient: the abolition of slavery and voting rights for women. Others, prohibition, eugenics and various forms of food-nuttery matching the changing scientific fashions of the day, look weird.
Over the centuries, New England has changed its theology while remaining loyal to its cultural foundations.
This Irish group, The High Kings, sing The Fields Of Glory, not allowed to be embedded but watchable at Youtube. It was said that "The Battle of Waterloo was won on the playing fields of Eton."
As I've participated in and coached individual and team sports, I've watched how they build the best traits of character. Here's a review of a critique of not enough engaging young people's imagination beyond the rote.
This young lady speaks of her experiences and feelings as many gay friends have described them to me. She is eloquent and, as far as I can know, correct. -- I'm sure there are as proportionately many straight kooks as gay. I'm sure that, if there are proportionately more among gays, it may largely come from evolving in an atmosphere of fears. I, or you, may not support some aspects of the gay political agenda, but let's never discriminate against honesty and love.
There are an infinite number of ways to live life fully and energetically. I was thinking about that topic since I read the bio of a fellow I admire and have heard speak in the past, Sander Gilman. I am a fan.
Dr. Gilman spoke at a medical meeting I attended in NYC in December. He is a polymath. Here's his bio:
Sander L. Gilman is a distinguished professor of the Liberal Arts and Sciences as well as Professor of Psychiatry at Emory University. A cultural and literary historian, he is the author or editor of over eighty books. His Obesity: The Biography appeared with Oxford University Press in 2010; his most recent edited volume, Wagner and Cinema (with Jeongwon Joe) was published in that same year. He is the author of the basic study of the visual stereotyping of the mentally ill, Seeing the Insane, published by John Wiley and Sons in 1982 (reprinted: 1996) as well as the standard study of Jewish Self-Hatred, the title of his Johns Hopkins University Press monograph of 1986. For twenty-five years he was a member of the humanities and medical faculties at Cornell University where he held the Goldwin Smith Professorship of Humane Studies. For six years he held the Henry R. Luce Distinguished Service Professorship of the Liberal Arts in Human Biology at the University of Chicago and for four years was a distinguished professor of the Liberal Arts and Medicine and creator of the Humanities Laboratory at the University of Illinois at Chicago. During 1990-1991 he served as the Visiting Historical Scholar at the National Library of Medicine, Bethesda, MD; 1996-1997 as a fellow of the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences, Stanford, CA; 2000-2001 as a Berlin prize fellow at the American Academy in Berlin; 2004-5 as the Weidenfeld Visiting Professor of European Comparative Literature at Oxford University; 2007 to the present as Professor at the Institute in the Humanities, Birkbeck College; 2010 to 2013 as a Visiting Research Professor at The University of Hong Kong. He has been a visiting professor at numerous universities in North America, South Africa, The United Kingdom, Germany, Israel, China, and New Zealand. He was president of the Modern Language Association in 1995. He has been awarded a Doctor of Laws (honoris causa) at the University of Toronto in 1997, elected an honorary professor of the Free University in Berlin (2000), and an honorary member of the American Psychoanalytic Association (2007).
I work hard, make myself as useful as I can, and read quite a bit, but I am a slouch. I stand in awe of such productive people, who are blessed with abundant talents and use them to the full.
...“calm and collected” are not the words that come to mind to describe the feminist response to the governor from Alaska. The young feminist Jessica Grose, writing on the popular website Jezebel just after the Republican convention, was—well, we’ll let her describe it: “When Palin spoke on Wednesday night, my head almost exploded from the incandescent anger boiling in my skull. . . . What I feel for her privately could be described as violent, nay, murderous, rage.” Grose’s readers left more than 700 comments, according to the late New York Sun, including one from a reader who wanted to “vomit with rage.” Other haters damned Palin as a traitor to her sex or an “insult to women,” as Judith Warner spat in the New York Times. “Turncoat bitch!” the comedian Sandra Bernhard railed in a performance caught on YouTube. “You whore in your cheap fucking . . . cheap-ass plastic glasses and your hair up!”