Category Archives: Politics

The more things change…

As a parent of two Chicago Public Schools 4th graders, I’ve had a crash course this year in urban austerity.  Teachers are trying their best, but with 31 students per class, the school library effectively closed, and district mandated testing, … Continue reading

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The Governor’s Thinking Has Become Very Uptight

Originally posted on Rethinking the University. Mulling over Jerry Brown’s recent comments on the disruptive impact of digital technology on education, I’m reminded of the lead character in the Coen Brothers film The Big Lebowski. Another spokesman for the California … Continue reading

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Jerry Brown, Vanguard of the Digital Revolution (He Googled It)

Originally posted on Remaking the University. At the last Regents meeting, Governor Brown mounted the digital barricades and sent a shot across the bow of every University of California professor and administrator. Tossing a mixed green salad of metaphors about … Continue reading

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The Demand for Demands Misses the Point

Now that the Occupy Wall Street phenomenon has achieved a level of respect from the mainstream media (by which I mean it’s no longer an object of knee-jerk ridicule), all the smart people are demanding that it shape up, identify … Continue reading

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Traction, Torque, Leverage: #OWS Mission Accomplished

Political and economic systems have a lot of inertia.  Once they are up and running, once people come to see them as “normal” they move along with apparent stability, even when in retrospect we see that they were in crisis.  … Continue reading

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Wisconsin: Is this the movement we’ve been waiting for?

Although you frequently hear comparisons between the Great Depression of the 1930s and our own Great Recession–and between FDR and Obama–there is at least one important distinction. During the early years of the Great Depression, working people in the U.S. … Continue reading

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Back to the Heartland

With my adopted state in financial collapse, what better time for a tour of the Midwest?! It was a hell of a trip.  With an 8 AM departure, we decided to get a hotel at the airport last night.  You … Continue reading

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Bankers can’t build cars

Let’s just call it “fair and balanced.”  Yes, GM’s debtholders are crying to the media and the government that the offer they’re getting is not “reasonable” is “absurd,” and “amounts to using taxpayer money to show political favoritism of one … Continue reading

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History in the Mix

We’ve all been watching and reading the denunciations, from the right and the left, of Wall Street and Obama’s alleged complicity in enriching the rich.  History has become something of a motif in these “debates.”  For instance, conservatives claim that … Continue reading

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You ought to give Iowa a try…

Justice moves slowly.  But in this case it was worth the wait.  In August 2007, an Iowa district court ruled the state’s Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional.  Today, the Iowa Supreme Court upheld that ruling and same-sex marriage will begin … Continue reading

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Changes coming Monday for auto bailout

Not much time to post as I’m preparing for my first dissertation defense as a professor. Should be interesting. But there is some big news coming on the auto bailout. GM will get 60 days to get their act in … Continue reading

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End of an Era

About a month ago, the Fox News website (of all places) interviewed me for an article on historians’ assessments of Bush II’s legacy.  The reporter began with the well-worn idea that it takes a few decades to fully assess a … Continue reading

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