Monday, March 24, 2008

On the Road to Intellectualism

I am cross-posting this from because I believe its important regarding intellectualism and anti-intelluctualism in America. When things are taken out of context, when one does not go to the primary sources and thinks for themself, one is on the road to anti-inllectualism in America.

I am in the middle of Susan Jacoby's book The Age of Unreason which is her update of Hofstadter's Anti-intellectualism in American Life. Bill Moyers interviewed her: is the NYT review of the book:

John Dean's comments on Obama's speech on race is a must read. Dean doesn't comment on the content per se, but on the intelligence and eloquence of the speech. Dean goes on to point out that we have been dumbing down America over the past 50 years:

Here is Obama's speech, if you happened to have somehow missed it:

BTW, Here is one of Rev. Wright's so-called incendiary sermon. As I tell my students go to the primary source and make up your own mind:

For some analyses, including Roland Martin's: and

Monday, March 17, 2008

Gender Trouble

The Sunday NYT Magazine published an article about a problem on women's college campuses--young women are entering as females and transition to become male uring their college years.

There are people who are born intersexed, and still others who are hormonely the other. I fully support trans-issues and people. I understand the safety of trans people need and have at a Women's College. But that does not mean I think that there still needs to be a greater interogation of the trend of why so many girls who want to be or will be boyz.

Part of this I place at the feet of Queer Theory and its patron saint Michel Foucault. Queer Theory still preferences the male patriarchy without analysis.

Our society as a whole still preferences males--witness, for instance, the democratic primary and the misogyny that is whipped up and used by the media to belittle Senator clinton. Or, open almost any high school or college history text and read who is in the main text and who gets literally marginalized in the boxes. Or, the fact that 45 years since the Equal Pay Act of 1963 women are still, at best, earning 79 cents to the male dollar. Women are still objectified. The so called gender neutral default is still male ( Joan Tronto and I wrote about this over 10 years ago--see ).

. . .

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Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Spitzer as Humpty Dumpty

He was on the path to become the first Jewish President after he reformed NYS politics. But, instead he is poised to be indited for money laundering and transportation of a female over state lines for prostitution ( a violation of the Mann Act)*.
How did the crusader against crime, the "sheriff of Wall Street," the reformer who went to Albany fall from his perch--shattering into a pieces. Rumor has it that it was a bank that tipped off the US DA which began the investigation. Please note that the Gov when AG did not make friends with Banks, Wall Street among others.
Question: Who leaked this to the press? Another rumour I heard said follow the ties to the lead Republican in NY--Joe Bruno and his strong ties to the banking industry.
IMHO, Arrogance, power and thinking with his smaller head along living (and working) in a glass house, that has him in this position. He did prosecute prostitution rings--is it true that those who take the high moral ground, do so because of their own guilt and thus, have the furtherest to fall?

And, like Humpty Dumpty he will not be put back together again, nor will the trust he broke with the public.

* no "john" to the best of my knowledge has been accused of this crime.

p.s. While the fact that you had extra-martial relations with a prostitute IS a private matter between you and your wife, and daughters, it is also a public matter since you broke the laws you have sworn to uphold. (BTW, Pres. Clinton was impeached for perjury--lying about his sexual encounters with Ms. Lewinsky--not for the sexual encounters themselves.)

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Torture is NOT us!

Though the resident of the White House thinks it is. W veto'd the bill that would have outlawed the use of torture by the CIA yesterday. In his radio address he said "“we need to ensure our intelligence officials have all the tools they need to stop the terrorists. . .The bill Congress sent me would take away one of the most valuable tools in the war on terror — the CIA program to detain and question key terrorist leaders and operatives . . . [calling torture] specialized interrogation procedures to question a small number of the most dangerous terrorists under careful supervision.”

Hopefully the dems will be able to override this veto, so that we can begin to regain our moral standing. . .
To paraphrase Gertrude Stein: torture is torture is torture.

Bush and Cheney both have committed war crimes, and IMHO have committed treason upon our country.

By the way, Senator McCain --the "in Iraq for 100 years" former POW presidential candidate who claims to be anti-torture, voted against this bill.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Memo: to all candidates

You are running for the position of President of the United States of America (aka POTUS). It is just ONE of your responsibilities to be Commander in Chief, BUT you are only Commander in Chief of the MILITARY, not of the USA.

I do understand that one of our key issues is National Security, but again that is just ONE of our key issues.

Please remember this as you run the gauntlet towards the first Tuesday after the first monday in November.


Monday, March 03, 2008

Sexism as Comedy?

Oh Bill*, You are sexist. Your most recent show plays only to your male demographic. o you really think you are funny, sarcastic or enlightened?


*Bill Maher


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