Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Dartmouth Shifts - to the Right?

Today's Inside Higher Ed features an article on the implications of Peter Robinson and Todd Zywicki's successful petition candidacies for the Board of Trustees.

Included are some priceless grafs where Jim Larimore tries to pass off recent changes (such as the lifting of the moratorium on new single-sex organizations) as a "natural progression," rather than a "seismic shift."

Monday, June 27, 2005

Trustee Smacks Social Security

Trustee T.J. Rodgers '70 denounced Social Security as a "scam" in a video by the libertarian Freestar Media group. (Video is on the top left, titled "Monkey Beats Social Security.")

"I think Social Security is a real scam," said Rodgers, the CEO of Cypress Semiconductor. "I think everybody knows now there is no Social Security fund, that you have no retirement account--that's all a scam. If I ran this company the way the government runs Social Security, I literally would already be in jail."

Friday, June 24, 2005

Making a run for it

John Carney '78 announced his intentions to run for the governorship of Delaware in 2008.

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

The Scholar

Apparently Scot from ABC's The Scholar will be a member of the class of 2009.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Big Green Alert

Courtesy of an infamous Dartmouth sports enthusiast:

Bruce Wood, the longtime sportswriter for the Valley News (left the paper this spring), has launched a new site for Dartmouth football news, Big Green Alert. It's a subscription service, $50 for the season.

I consider Bruce my mentor, and he knows the ins and outs of the Dartmouth athletic department like no one else.

Here's the site: www.biggreenalert.com

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Jobs One Doesn't See Every Day

In an article on the front page of today's Journal:
The Chip Ganassi Racing team's pit crew includes baseball players from Wake Forest University; football players from Wake, the University of Kentucky and the University of North Carolina; and a hockey player from Dartmouth.

Jobs are more specific--like the jack-man, or the guy in charge of the front tires. A top tire carrier should be able to "index" the 60 lb tire--get it from a resting position on the ground in to place on the car--in around 7/10 of a second. Top tire-changers can make $100K, and the average is around $60K.

Even the Review wouldn't do this

At least not in 2005.

The New York Post opened an article today:

The Southampton-based Shinnecock Indians yesterday fired the first arrow in their battle to reclaim ancestral lands -- filing a federal lawsuit seeking the return of 3,600 acres of prime real estate "stolen" by the state a century and a half ago.

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Board Lifts Ban on New Greek Houses

The Board of Trustees has lifted its six-year moratorium on new fraternities and sororitie, a dramatic shift in policy away from the unpopular Student Life Initiative. Because it appeared to reinforce the administration's perceived anti-fraternity policy, the ban was viewed as among the most notorious of the Initiative's provisions.
The board accepted a recommendation by Dean of the College James Larimore that the moratorium on the addition of new single-sex, residential and selective organizations the trustees had adopted in 2001 be lifted. The action acknowledges the progress made by the Coed, Fraternity and Sorority System over the past five years in meeting new standards of excellence, and recognizes recent requests for a new sorority. The board vote returns to the dean the responsibility for determining whether new organizations should be granted recognition.
This change in theory permits the establishment of a long-desired seventh sorority and, notably, the re-recognition of Zeta Psi fraternity, which was kicked off campus in 2001 and not allowed to regain official standing because of the ban.

Does this spell the end of the Student Life Initiative?

Sunday, June 12, 2005

The Dartmouth Review Celebrates 25 Years
Commencement Issue Now Online

The commencement issue of The Dartmouth Review is now available online. With this issue, the Review marks 25 years of publication.

Inside:Publication will resume this summer.

Friday, June 10, 2005

Larimore Credits '05s with Reform

In an e-mail to graduating seniors, Dean of the College James Larimore said the Class of 2005 has been instrumental in implementing several important changes at Dartmouth. An excerpt:
Your Class has a great track record of advocacy and commitment to the improvement of the College, and the Class of 2005 has helped us make several important decisions.

* I'm pleased to announce that, as a result of your efforts, the College is moving ahead with renovations to Alumni Gym that will provide a larger fitness center, more than three times as large as Kresge, and to renovate space that will provide better multipurpose space as well. In addition, we are moving ahead with plans to provide varsity athletes with an improved weight training area as well.

* I am also grateful for the advocacy and interest you have shown in improving our campus housing situation; construction is underway on the new McLaughlin Cluster on Maynard Street and a new residence on Tuck Mall adjacent to Butterfield and Russell Sage.

* Earlier this year a new staff member joined the Dean of Faculty office to coordinate initiatives to improve our pre-major advising system. Many of you also participated in a Student Assembly initiative to improve peer academic advising for the Class of 2008. Feedback from your Class was instrumental in moving each of these efforts forward.

You and your classmates leave a legacy of involvement and constructive dialogue that will serve the College well for years to come. You helped move Rush back to fall term and provided important input on changes to the College's Social Event Management Procedures and the Good Samaritan policy. I'm equally proud of the work done by many concerned students who worked closely with my administrative colleagues to make improvements to our sexual abuse prevention and response system, and to offer ideas about strengthening the College's sustainability efforts.

Trustee Meeting

Dartmouth's Trustees are in town this weekend for their summer meeting. Among the items on the agenda: formally welcoming Peter Robinson '79 and Todd Zywicki '88 to the Board. Under the Board's rules, its members have to confirm all new members, even those chosen by the alumni.

Thursday, June 09, 2005

Alumni Council Secretary summary...

of the discussion of the Trustee election at the spring meeting:

Trustee Elections: The group lamented the high level of rhetoric and misinformation that permeated the recent elections. The group proposed a resolution for the release of information on voting patterns by the Balloting Committee. Ultimately, the group did not recommend any significant actions since these might be construed as being a knee-jerk reaction by those dissatisfied with the recent election outcomes.

The full summary minutes can be found here.

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Seniors: Buy Indian Merchandise

This weekend is graduating seniors' last opportunity to purchase authentic Dartmouth Indians merchandise on campus. The full lineup of Indian wares—including the new Indian polo shirts—will be offered on Main Street this Friday and Saturday, from 10am to 4pm.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Culture quiz cont.

Our old friend, Stefan Beck, at The New Criterion's Armavirumque provides some more interesting tidbits regarding our Western Culture quiz.
Sorry kids, it only gets worse.

Monday, June 06, 2005

Abdicating Responsibility

Upon reading the results of The Review's latest culture quiz, conservative blogger Thomas Brewton lamented that "Dartmouth apparently is failing to impart an understanding of the culture and tradition that constitute our unwritten constitution. Even a good left-wing atheist like Harvard?s professor Santayana allowed that those who do not know history are doomed to repeat past mistakes."

He added, "Dartmouth alumni have good reason to elect insurgent members of the governing board."

Saturday, June 04, 2005

Harvard's Diversity

Heather MacDonald of the Manhattan Institute's excellent City Journal writes on the $50 million that Harvard will be spending for faculty "diversity" efforts.

A key element of the plan is the creation of a new administrative post, the Senior Vice Provost for Diversity and Faculty Development, who will promote the hiring of "underrepresented racial/ethnic groups." Presumably women are now an underrepresented racial/ethnic group.

Re: Tussle in Cyberspace?

Mr. Sloan-Rossiter writes that
Of course, Republicans used the rationale that raising the minimum wage would effect employment. However, NH in April 2005 had only a 3.5% unemployment rate, technically lower than the "natural" unemployment rate which is usually estimated at 4%. New Hampshire has the lowest minimum wage of any state in New England.
This sounds like an indirect way of saying that we should raise the minimum wage because too many people are working in New Hampshire.

Protecting the Connecticut

Troy Blanchard

Safety and Security, it turns out, has a boat.

Do athletic events on the water need protection from interlopers? Does the security force hope to catch those attempting the Ledyard Challenge? Does the vessel help S&S crack down on drinking at Tubestock—more than the half-dozen police boats already do?

If anyone has seen this boat in action, please let us know what it was used for.

Tussle in Cyberspace?

Michael Sloan-Rossiter '08 has issues with a firm "No!" to an increase in New Hampshire's minimum-wage, or so he made clear in a post to the Dartmouth Young Dems' weblog. Apparently not increasing the wage contributes to local poverty or something like that.

Kale Bongers parried with a link to a web site that doesn't jive with Mr. Sloan-Rossiter's economic viewpoint at all.

This was followed in short order by a response to that response, claiming to have evidence that refutes the refutation.

Are these the small beginnings of an epic battle to come or just highly opinionated people with time and high-speed internet? Is it too much to assume they even have high-speed internet? Oh, what will happen to all the poor and unemployed caught in the middle?

Hufu Makes More News

A California newspaper has run an article on Hufu founder Mark Nuckols Tu '06. The Tuck student hopes to expand his fledgling business of selling human flesh-flavored tofu and related merchandise, as he explained to The Review.

Friday, June 03, 2005

Required Reading

Any self-styled conservative would do well to read this article, "The Future of Tradition," by Lee Harris, from the latest issue of Policy Review. Those who don't consider themselves conservatives should read it anyway: Perhaps it will give you an understanding of the intellectual rationale behind traditions and traditionalism--and the reason conservatives are fighting so hard on a number of social issues.

I shall not lie: The article is dense, and will take some time to work through, but the result is well worth it. Harris will take you on a journey that kneecaps multi-culturalists and cultural relativism, re-examines defenses of traditionalism--defensible defenses as well as indefensible defenses--compares the Greek Sophists to comtemporary intellectuals, and much much more. All written in a dispassionate manner, taking you from point A to point B to point C. You may feel like you've entered the ring with an intellectual heavyweight--you have--but if you survive the bout, you'll come out on the other side with a better understanding of culture, the transmission of culture, the current culture wars, why civilization hangs in the balance, how an intellectual elite has brought down civilization before, and how they're trying to do it again. No doubt about it: This is very Important. One excerpt, just to give you a taste:
But a tradition that has lost its ethical obviousness has thereby become vulnerable to challenge, and the question soon arises: Why this tradition rather than the tradition of foreigners? Indeed, that was the theme of the first cultural warriors, the Greek Sophists, who, wandering as homeless strangers, went from polis to polis undermining the traditional ethos everywhere they stopped--not by willful subversion, but merely by calling the traditional ethos into question. To cause people to have even the first shadow of a doubt about the rightness of their inherited tradition is to exercise a staggering power over them, and it explains the often violent reaction of the Greek city-states against those who were perceived, fairly or unfairly, to be subverting the traditional order through the mere use of words.

Read this article. I can assure you that it is much more enlightening than studying for finals.

Not wholly unrelated, when I logged on to post this fine article, I came across the following bit in the comments section regarding TDR's latest (excellent) issue that addresses similar issues:

"Out of curiosity, how does knowing who founded Rome create the kind of balanced, thoughful person that is able to live a world that is much more complicated than your proscribed brew of Bible, Milton and Shakespeare?"

The implicit assumption, it seems, is that at some point (in the last few decades, I suppose), humanity evolved beyond the quaint ruminations of Milton, Shakespeare, and the Disciples. Their views and razor-sharp commentary and observations on the nature of civilization, human beings, and history are out of date, passe. One wonders, though, how the modern world is "much more complicated" than that of Shakespeare, who, I believe, did a pretty damn good job with recreating human nature, emotions, and circumstances in a thought-provoking (and mellifluous) way. I wish someone like our dear anonymous would explain how I, Rigoberta Menchu is more relevant today than the Bible.

This kind of sentiment, as anti-intellectual as it is morally bankrupt, pervades so much of the modern-day university and is trickling/flooding into society. Harris's article is a bone-crushing pile-drive of anyone who thinks otherwise--and it's a call to arms for everyone worried about our societal trajectory.

A Crucial Question for the DAG

Kevin Drum writes a supremely important post that should be required reading for members of the Darfur Action Group. He quotes a recent Zogby Poll:
Concerning NATO's role -- an idea we have championed here -- 80% support creating a no-fly zone over Darfur, and 76% support NATO logistical and troop support for an expanded African peacekeeping force. However, support falls quickly away at the prospect of U.S. military action; just 38% of likely voters think the U.S. should send troops under its own flag (which is not surprising).
People want someone to save the Darfuris, even with guns-- just not America. Multilateralism trumps human rights. He concludes:
I'd like to see more people on both left and right face up to facts: if you consider yourself serious about stopping the genocide in Darfur, then you should be willing to support a serious commitment of combat troops -- and all that that implies -- for a period likely to last years.
His other analysis is also sharp. I'm curious: how many DAGers would support armed unilateral (or even multilateral?) intervention, and how many lives are worth wasting to placate the revered international institutions? It's fine to qualify your human rights concerns with 'But! We need to respect international institutions and the community of nations.' Eventually, though, when the situation is dire, you have to choose.

Thursday, June 02, 2005

New TDR Now Online

The latest issue of The Dartmouth Review is now available online. Inside:

Save a Whale, Drive a Car

Trustee-Elect Todd Zywicki '88 posts on the Volokh Conspiracy that the reforestation of Vermont over the past hundred years is largely due to use of the automobile. He also notes that:

"[T]he discovery that petroleum could be used to produce energy also saved the whales from extinction and eliminated the rivers of manure that used to flow through American cities."

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Oh, My, My, My

Ed Koch reviews Star Wars.

Oh, My

Did nobody proofread today's Daily Dartmouth headlines?