Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Hovey Murals to be Preserved

In a letter in today's Daily D, Brian Kennedy, Director of the Hood Museum states that the murals have been deemed "culturally important artifacts" and will be removed and preserved in advance of the planned destruction and rebuilding of Thayer Dining Hall. I can't help but applaud the College on this decision: they finally tuned out middling protests and made a firm decision well in advance of it becoming a messier issue.

More Acronyms

The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, FIRE has also weighed in upon the Alumni Constitution controversy. Like the ACTA (see below), and others, the main concern lies with the imposition of restrictions upon petition candidates.

On a side note, based on reactions from the audience during the discussion forum in Boston this past Monday, there seems to be very little solid, passionate support for the propsed changes. For those in opposition, the issue of petition candidates is the main sticking point. Most factions agree that a new constitution is in order, but not this constitution.

Watch Dartlog and the pages of The Dartmouth Review for in-depth coverage of the issue.

ACTA looks down on AGTF antics

The American Council of Trustees and Alumni has weighed in on the Alumni Governance Task Force debacle, referring to the sordid affair as the lastest in a "nosedive" in terms of the College's "stance toward governance, free expression, and free association." Not that those involved in AGTF will listen to any voices but their own.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Gala update

This just in: Alex Donner and his orchestra, the big band to the stars, will be performing at the Dartmouth Review gala. Check out their great website here.
And buy your tickets for the gala here now.

The Yale Taliban

The WSJ has more on the thickening plot surrounding Sayed Rahmatullah Hashemi, a former Taliban ambassador-at-large and now a student at Yale.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

James Freedman, RIP

More on President Freedman's passing:

Breaking news

Former president of the College James O. Freedman has died at age 70 of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.

Monday, March 20, 2006

What is to the right of Attila the Hun?

It is the writing you will find in the forthcoming, first ever, Dartmouth Review anthology, editing by Stefan Beck and myself. Order your copy now at Amazon, or you might just miss out on the first printing of this major publishing event.

And then, calling all Reviewers and supporters:

Join us on April 21 as we release the book at the Dartmouth Review twenty-fifth anniversary gala in New York. Featuring Mark Steyn, Father Rutler, and special guests, the gala is selling out fast--so if you've been meaning to reserve your tickets but just haven't yet, now's the time to do it. You can order tickets online here.

Monday, March 13, 2006

More Hockey Props

The front page of features an article about the men's hockey team's ECACHL championship, and a cursory analysis of the parity seen in the league, a unique phenomenon among Division I's six major conferences.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Albany bound

The Dartmouth men's hockey team was dominant last night, completing a sweep of Yale in the ECAC quarterfinals.

Depending on tonight's results, the team will play Harvard, St. Lawrence, or Quinnipiac in the league semifinals at Albany's Pepsi Arena next weekend.

Friday, March 10, 2006

New Constitution Unveiled

The Alumni Governance Task Force folks have released the draft of the new constitution. I've only had a time for a cursory look at it, but it appears to include everything we thought it would to discourage more petition candidate like Rodgers, Robinson, and Zywicki.

They're also going to be holding a public discussion (plus a webcast) about the draft constitution in Boston on March 27. Of course, it's being held on a Monday evening on short notice during spring break -- it's almost as if they didn't want people to be able to make it there.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Stempniak '05 profiled

Lee Stempniak '05, currently with the St. Louis Blues, was recently the subject of a player profile on the Blues' site.

Dartmouth Salary Information

The ever-valuable Chronicle of Higher Education gives Dartmouth's average faculty salaries.

'06 Alumni Councilor Selected

So, after a bevy of criticism about the results of the SEC vote last week, what does the newy-formed Committee make its first act? Appoint two more Paleopitus members to class positions, including the important alumni councilor post.

It's almost as if these guys were trying to appear as out-of-touch as possible with the majority of the class.
--- Forwarded message from 06 Senior Executive Committee ---

>Date: 08 Mar 2006 11:14:39 EST
>From: 06.Senior.Executive.Committee@Dartmouth.EDU (06 Senior Executive Committee)
>Reply-To: 06.Senior.Executive.Committee@Dartmouth.EDU (06sec)
>Subject: Your Alumni Councilor & Head Agent!
>To: (Recipient list suppressed)

Congratulations to the new '06

Alumni Councilor & Head Agent
Libby Hadzima! Sam Jackson!

The SEC would like to thank everyone who submitted nominations.

We will be looking for mini-reunion chairs, newsletter editor, class photographer, class artist, class project chair, class listserv manager, and webmaster at the beginning of spring term. Please consider nominating '06s to these positions.

Good luck on finals and have a great spring break!

06 SEC
Anthony Bramante, President
Edy Wilson, Vice President
Heidi Immesberger, Secretary
Mikee Guzman, Treasurer

New Constitution Draft Next Week

Now that the administration-dominated Alumni Council has succeeded in changing the threshold to approve a new constitution from 3/4 to 2/3, they're going to try to shove a new constitution down our throats even sooner than expected.

It looks like a draft of the new constitution will be made publicly available next week and that a vote could some as early as this summer.
--- Forwarded Message ---
Date: Wed, 8 Mar 2006 09:01:32 EST
From: Patricia Fisher-Harris Harris@Dartmouth.EDU>
Subject: Letter from President Rick Routhier

To Alumni Councilors
Re: Recent Alumni Association Constitutional change

As you know, all Dartmouth alumni were recently asked to
consider an amendment
to the Association constitution which will change the
method of voting for
constitutional amendments. The amendmant, which I include
at the end of this
message, shifts the process for considering constitutional
amendments from
in-person voting requiring a three quarters majority
to 'all media' voting
requiring a two thirds majority.

Despite a blizzard that blew up the Northeastern Coast the
day of the vote, 230
alumni convened in Spaulding Auditorium on Sunday, February
12. I'm happy to
report that the measure passed by a vote of 198 To 32, (86%
approval, well
above the 75% requirement for passage).

The passage of this amendment by more than 80% of those
present means that we
will be on a different track than the one we discussed in
December when our Alumni Governance Task Force presents
their upcoming final
constitution recommendation. We have asked the Task Force
Committee to
complete their work in early March. Soon thereafter, we
will send out to the
entire Council their proposal. The Council will be asked
to vote on the
proposed constitution at our May meeting. And if we
approve the proposal, the
Association will then send out the proposed constitution
for consideration by
all alumni via "all media" voting, probably sometime this

The reason I bring this up is that once the final proposal
is completed,
opportunities for further input will be limited. At our May
meeting we
will likely be asking you to consider a straight up or down
vote on the
document. Therefore, if you or your constituents have input
you would
like considered, and have not done so already, I would urge
you to read the
draft constitution and give your feedback to the Task Force
during the next

The draft will be sent to you next week, and you have two
ways to provide

1. Email the Task Force directly:
2. Participate in a WEBCAST during which all alumni will be
able to comment on
the draft and ask questions of the Task Force.

The webast is taking place on Monday, March 27, in Boston,
from 7-9 pm (EST) at
the Sheraton Boston. A formal invitation will be coming to
you this week.
Please come to the webcast in person if you can, or
particpate online.

The constitution draft resolves issues regarding the
leadership structure,
nominations for officers and alumni trustees, and the
process for amending the

If you have a strong point of view on anything in the
draft, we'd like to hear
from you. Again, you can contact the Task Force by emailing
your point of view
directly to them or back to me.

On our behest as a Council and on our behalf, the Task
Force has worked hard to
craft a document and a constitution that will best serve
the alumni. They are
very near the finish line and we want to make sure they
have the benefit of as
much input as possible before they complete their work.

Thanks in advance for your consideration. I look forward to
our next meeting
from May 18-20 in Hanover.

Rick Routhier '73

Monday, March 06, 2006

Jim Merkel Update

I normally resist making fun of idiotic stories in the Daily Dartmouth, but today's story on "sustainability director" Jim Merkel takes foolishness and lunacy to a whole new level.
"After being hired last February as the College's first sustainability director, Merkel said he has spent his time since starting work last June by listening to students' and administrators' concerns. He has 11 projects in the works, he said, but none have been completed."

Merkel said that basic resource consumption at Dartmouth is very high by global standards, and that Dartmouth students consume somewhere between five and six times more energy than the average person on the planet.

So more than a year later, and we've paid Jim Merkel to do, well, nothing. But don't worry, he's been listening. And he also figured out that Dartmouth students use a tad bit more energy than your average Third World hut-dweller. So what, then, are his ideas?
Merkel also proposes converting Homeplate into a waste-free dining facility.

"Just imagine if you took [all of] your meals there and by the end of the day you didn't throw out any garbage," Merkel said. "Just imagine that in one day, as a person here at Dartmouth, you didn't need a garbage can, you didn't even need a recycling bin."

The experiment would include cloth napkins and washable take-out containers, which students would have to pay a deposit to use. A wide variety of self-serve drinks would also be offered and drinks in disposable containers would be eliminated, he said.

The prototype also calls for Homeplate to serve less beef because it has a more severe impact on the environment than does chicken. More organic and local foods would also be served and the ecological impact of each meal would be stated on the menus.

Great. We'll all eat organic chicken. That'll solve things. And students will wash and re-use their own take-out containers. That will also work marvelously, I'm sure. After all, the Big Green Bikes have been a smashing success. Anything else, Jim?
Merkel said he thinks that his appointment is just the beginning of a major movement for Dartmouth. He compared his job to Harvard's sustainibilty [sic] program, the Harvard Green Campus Initiative, which started with one person and now counts 13 employees.

"Hiring me is the first step in starting the conversation," Merkel said. "In the end it needs to be quite a large-scale program with quite a lot of people working."

Ah, here's the real answer -- we need to hire more Jim Merkels! So once we have 13 people telling us to eat organic chicken in a re-usable take-out container, we'll achieve environmental nirvana. Brilliant.

Supreme Court Upholds Campus Recruiting

The Supreme Court ruled unanimously this morning that colleges accepting federal education aid must allow military recruiters on campus, even if they have objections to the Department of Defense's "don't ask, don't tell" policy.

In doing so, the court rejected the free speech argument offered by the law schools who had sued the military in the case. Chief Justice Roberts, writing for the court, stated that "A military recruiter's mere presence on campus does not violate a law school's right to associate, regardless of how repugnant the law school considers the recruiter's message."

Sunday, March 05, 2006

Men's hockey to face Yale

This weekend, the Dartmouth men's hockey team will host Yale in the second round of the ECACHL playoffs. The Elis, the eleventh seed, defeated Union in two games. Of note: Dartmouth swept the season series with the Bulldogs, winning 9-4 at Thompson Arena and 6-4 at Ingalls Rink.

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Save Tubestock!

And the fight to save Tubestock begins --

--- Forwarded message from Robert J. King ---

>Date: 02 Mar 2006 21:50:17 EST
>From: Robert J. King
>Reply-To: BR
>Subject: Save Tubestock!
>To: (Recipient list suppressed)

Fellow Students,

Our alma mater warns us not to "let the old traditions fail." However, this summer, that is exactly what is going to happen. I am sure that all of you have heard the news: Tubestock--a hallmark of Sophomore Summer for 25 years--is marked for extinction. A variety of forces are conspiring to deprive us of a day we have all been looking forward to since freshman fall. When we talk to the classes before us they never fail to mention Tubestock as one of the best experiences they have had at Dartmouth. Lets ensure that we can say the same to the '10's.

This is not something that is going to happen on its own. Unless we, the men and women of Dartmouth, gather together and fight for our traditions, Tubestock is doomed. If we are willing to fight for Tubestock there are several avenues we can pursue to maintain this time-honored tradition. If you are interested in joining the effort to save Tubestock please reply to this blitz.

Together we can stop this from being the year that Tubestock dies.

BR King 08
Glenn Bridgman 08
Yan Shurin 08
Brendan Huang 08
Ethan Mefford 08

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

The Plot to Kill Tubestock

The Review has learned that the College and several governments in Vermont and New Hampshire are collaborating to end Tubestock, an annual tradition in which Dartmouth sophomores raft down the Connecticut River. This has been controversial previously because alcohol is usually involved.

In the past, an event like Tubestock has been technically illegal. However, according to state law, the organizers are held accountable (not the participants), and, technically, no one organized Tubestock. In the eyes of the law, students spontaneously congregated. The idea is to introduce a law in the New Hampshire state legislature that would make participants legally accountable. Students would be videotaped, and the College has agreed to help identify participants, who could then be arrested. Another option is to require a permit. The event could take place in theory if the government grants a permit; however, the permit will require that the event be insured, and Hank James, the College risk manager, thinks no one will insure the event, hence denying the students a permit and killing Tubestock.

Julia Griffin, town manager of Hanover, New Hampshire wrote the following document:

Problem Statement – Tubestock is a dangerous event, mixing large numbers of participants and “rafts” with of age and underage alcohol consumption. It puts Dartmouth students, Dartmouth itself, the State of New Hampshire, the Town of Norwich and the Town of Hanover at substantial risk. Our concern is with protecting the safety of participants and we do not feel we can do so effectively. As such, we want to take steps to abolish the event or to so constrain the event that it is substantially changed, involving no alcohol, no rafts or floating objects of any kind, and that any party with jurisdiction is completely absolved of any liability.

Background – Tubestock falls under the jurisdiction of four different legal entities. The State of New Hampshire has jurisdiction within the Connecticut River and enforcement is taken by the Marine Patrol. The Town of Norwich has jurisdiction on the Norwich side; the Town of Hanover has jurisdiction on the Hanover side. Dartmouth College owns the property abutting the river at the current location, which also places them in both the liability chain and enables them to prevent launching of the event from the Hanover side.

Dartmouth has declined to have any responsibility for the event given the danger it poses and the illegal alcohol consumption that typically happens during the event.

The State of New Hampshire requires that an event like Tubestock be permitted. According to the Marine Patrol, the event has not received a permit and so, legally, the event sponsors are in violation of state law. Dartmouth students have specifically avoided obtaining permits because no single individual or group wants the responsibility for being the permittee.

Alternative Solutions:

1. State law can be modified during this legislative session to make it illegal to “participate” in a non-permitted event on a State waterway. Currently only the responsible event organizers or sponsors can be arrested for participating in a non-permitted event; the participants cannot be arrested. Marine Patrol has not been able to arrest any individuals because Dartmouth students have refused to obtain a permit. By modifying the law, every participant could be arrested, also resulting in implantation of academic sanctions by Dartmouth. Under this scenario, if the event were to proceed, law enforcement authorities would videotape and photograph the event and then seek Dartmouth’s assistance in identifying all of the participants, rather than attempting to prevent entry into the river for the event itself. Collectively, the three enforcement agencies involved simply do not have the manpower required to effectively arrest everyone at the scene, nor do they feel this is a safe approach to policing the event.

2. a. Dartmouth student sponsors will be required to obtain a permit for the event. The Towns of Hanover and Norwich would require a permit, as would the State of New Hampshire. The permits will identify the conditions outlined below.

b. Each entity would require the event sponsor to provide an independent certificate of insurance, naming the Towns and/or State of New Hampshire as an additional insured in the amount of $2,000,000. We would suspect that Dartmouth would do the same to protect the College in the event they were sued by the family of a Dartmouth students who might be injured or killed during the event. It is highly unlikely that any insurance agency will issue a certificate for such an event given the combination of factors which make the event dangerous.

c. In addition, the Dartmouth students will be required to pay all of the expense related to the presence of the Marine Patrol, Town of Norwich and Town of Hanover Police Department personnel. The combination of overtime for event coverage and the cost of transporting and/or renting specialized equipment (boats) will likely result in a bill totaling several thousand dollars.

d. Checkpoints will be set up on both sides of the Connecticut River and down and up-river of the event. No participants will be allowed to enter the area without either all participants presenting acceptable ID to prove they are of-age or submitting to searches to eliminate the presence of alcohol.

e. All costs of clean-up, including any removal of debris such as makeshift rafts, will be paid for by the participants, requiring the up-front deposit of several thousand dollars as security against the clean-up expenses.

f. In the event an accidental death occurs as a result of the event, all State Marine Patrol costs associated with the recovery of a body will be assessed against the event permittee(s).