Back to the Blues

When I was in college (more than 30 years ago) I would write, occasionally, about the blues music for the student paper. I haven’t written anything similar since. Last night, however, I was… Continue reading

“A New Kind of Evil”?

Back, less than a week after 9/11, when George Bush said This is a new kind of–a new kind of evil. And we understand. And the American people are beginning to understand. This… Continue reading

Renovating Academia, Part IV

One of the pressures on academia these days has come from those parts of the outside population that believe universities could be run in a more business-like fashion. That is, many people assume… Continue reading

Bloggers Need Not Apply?

Hmpf. Someone without the courage to reveal his/her name (writing as “Ivan Tribble”) has written a piece called ”Bloggers Need Not Apply” for The Chronicle of Higher Education. The point of the article… Continue reading

Renovating Academia, Part III

Not surprisingly, most academics want to focus on the work they are doing, some of which (and it is impossible to tell, now, what will prove so) will be extremely important to our… Continue reading

Renovating Academia, Part II

In my last post on this issue, I described a problem that rises at least as much from outside perception as from actual abuse: tenure. Here, I want to talk about something that… Continue reading

Losing Freedom to Rights

On July 5, 2005, the Pennsylvania House of Representatives passed House Resolution 177 inspired by David Horowitz’s “Academic Bill of Rights.” The Pennsylvania resolution establishes a select committee to examine the academic atmosphere… Continue reading

War News Radio

Yesterday, a young woman walked into my store in Brooklyn.  She browsed a bit and we chatted.  As is usual these days, the subject of the war in Iraq and the London bombing… Continue reading

July 4, 1918

This is a letter my grandfather sent home just before landing in France in WWI (where he would lose his leg): On Board July 4, 1918 Dear Mamma and Grandma,When we first embarked… Continue reading

"Piecemeal Solutions" for Africa

That’s the phrase William Easterly uses in an opinion piece in today’s New York Times. He’s right, sweeping programs aren’t going to work.  Not for development in Africa, at least. When we were… Continue reading