Saturday, April 30, 2005

Can't Blame this One on Larry

According to Bloomberg, "Princeton Is Only Ivy League School to Narrow Gender Pay Gap", female professors are routinely paid less than their male counterparts at Ivy League universities. This pay discrepency is worse, suprisingly, at dear old Dartmouth, where women make, on average, 22% less than men. Note to self: When considering jobs in Academia in the future, stay away from Hanover.

Political Crystal Ball

Interesting article in the National Journal, "How the Republicans Lost their Majority, about a possible future outcome if the "Nuclear Option" goes through. While I hope such a world does not become a reality, what with the overturning of Roe and other landmark cases, it's a slightly more positive spin...the " Nuclear Option" not as the end of the world but as a segueway to brighter future for the Democrats.

Teenagers and God

Fascinating article via Salon on the relationship between teenagers and Christianity, God? Sure, whatever. The article's point seems to be that, while a majority of teenagers do consider themselves Christian, and many associate themselves with the faith, this is not your parents' religion. Specifically,

"And she wasn't the only one who saw God as a big cable guy in the sky. Most kids' faith, says Smith, takes the form of what he calls moralistic therapeutic deism -- God is an undemanding, all-fulfilling entity existing only to help us feel better about ourselves."

Actually not a bad view to have of your deity. Sure beats fundamentalism.

Thursday, April 28, 2005

Tonight on the O.C...

Ryan, Marissa, Summer and Seth learn some important information about Social Security Reform and energy policy, since the popular show has been replaced by Bush's speech on those topics. Details to follow when I get around to reading the transcript.

Bush in prime time tonight

Commencement Speaker Announced

Dartmouth's 2005 Commencement spearker will be Tom Brokaw, as announced today, Tom Brokaw to give Dartmouth Commencement Address. Mr. Brokaw will also receive an honorary degree. The choice seems to be a good one, since Mr. Brokaw should prove an interesting orator without being too politically volatile.

Does This Count as a "Man Date" ?

The Thursday Style section strikes again, with an article,The Tao of Skinny-Dipping, which sounds more like it should be about the Ledyard Challenge than middle-aged New York businessman. But apparently all-male nude swimming is the newest ( or oldest) craze among the well-heeled and well-connected. And while events like this are often infilitrated by women seeking involvement in the wheeling and dealing they usually involve, I feel like this old boys club may be one we females are less eager to infiltrate.

Ethics: Back in Action

Good but partisan news from the House in this CNN article, House reverses ethics rule changes. It's a step in the right direction in the uphill battle to get rid of Tom DeLay, who is a danger not only to both parties but to the American government as a whole.

The REAL reason to be Anti-Bush

Thanks to an American friend studying abroad in Edinburgh, this article, U.S. Foreign Policy Hurting American Students' Chances Of Getting Laid Abroad, via The Onion. While tongue in check, there is some truth to what it says. While I was in Scotland, none of the European students I met had any qualms questioning me about my politics, regardless of where we were. It was completely acceptable to ask who I voted for, what I thought of the Administration, and if all Americans were crazy. And while it didn't interfere with my social life, this is not the type of article the Off-Campus Programs office necessarily wants making the rounds.

Also, via Fartlog, apparently members of certain political minorities have the same problem when they venture far from home.

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

New Whipping Boy for the Dartmouth Left

I have to admit that, as much as I disagree with a lot of what it says, I generally read all of The Dartmouth Review. There's usually something that makes some sense or catches my interest, and I can always skip the more radical articles. I can't say the same of The Dartmouth Beacon, which seems to espouse a form of conservatism that is at times unpalatable. Apparently I'm not the only one who feels this way, as Chris Bateman on the LGb (pretty much deservedly) rips into the Beacon with this post Paleocon, Neocon, Beacon. Fartlog also takes aim,albeit with a more light-hearted attack. It will be interesting to see how The Beacon responds, (if it does) to these criticisms, and if it manages to survive on the Dartmouth campus.

The Fifth Question

Today, The D tries to explain why Pavillion's passover service this year has not been stellar.
Apparently, DDS underestimated the needed number of passover meals and has been running out. They also have no choice but to pass on the increased costs of the Kosher food to students who have no other dining options this week besides endless FoCo salad and matzah pizza made in the dorm kitchen microwave.

The D doesn't discuss, however, a few other grips I have with DDS's passoverness. First, the Pavillion was closed Sunday night, the first full day of Passover. I know that the Pavillion is usually closed Sundays, but that seems like an exception that could have been made. Also, I don't see why DDS doesn't put out boxes of matzah in all the other dining facilities. But at least we have the some options, and all the horseradish and gefilite fish I can eat.

Monday, April 25, 2005


Via Sploid, this story out of Peru, Peruvian virgin turns down $1.5m.

Apparently the story provoked a lot of outrage in Catholic Peru, as well as a lot of comments that this was just a publicity stunt. Even if it is just a publicity stunt, couldn't some charity step in and donate money, without such an awful auction? Or could some Hollywood studio buy the movie rights? Either would go a long way towards helping this girl.

A Whale of a Tale

Because I used to want to be a marine biologist, this story of whale dissection in Southhampton. Insert snarky comment about decay of the whale being linked to the moral decay associated with Long Island here.

Unlocking a whale's demise

(blogging will pick up post-midterms)

Sunday, April 24, 2005

Feeling Fat and Sassy

Two different days, two different smug pro-obesity columns by the Ny Times' token republicans.

John Tierney strikes on Saturday: Fat and Happy

David Brooks on Sunday: Living Longer Is the Best Revenge

Friday, April 22, 2005

Richard Popkin, Historian of Philosophy and Skepticism, Dies at 81

I've read a lot of Popkin over the past year or two because of my interest in the history and philosophy of religion. His writing is always clear and his points always valid. According to the NY Times, Richard Popkin, Historian of Philosophy and Skepticism, Dies at 81, he sounds like the type of scholar I'd want to be if I go into Academia.

Happy (early) Passover

Thanks to Susie, who got it off of Leno: - Matzah

And thanks to LGB: Seda Club

Thursday, April 21, 2005

Independent Nation

A call for the legitimization of the center and praise for a book that urges us to end partisan mud-slinging and try to compromise from the Orlando Sentinel.

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Direct Democracy at Dartmouth?

So far I've resisted endorsing a candidate for SA President, partly because I feel like I don't know enough about the issues to speak authoritatively, and partly because I based my decision on a rather arbitrary thing (G&F is just too good). But I thought that this blitz, which I just received, was worth posting. We'll see if it goes anywhere, but its a welcome wrinkle in an otherwise dull SA Election.

--- Forwarded message from Abolish SA ---
>Date: Tue, 19 Apr 2005 19:08:11 -0400
>From: Abolish SA
>User-Agent: Mozilla Thunderbird 1.0.2 (Windows/20050317)
>Subject: Abolish SA?




Did you know that towns as large as 25,000
people run themselves directly democratically?

With the SA elections happening at this very
moment, the question of whether or not SA
is a useful or necessary institution seems
more relevant and important than ever.

Does an intelligent campus of roughly 4,200
students really need representatives, or
can we represent ourselves?

The Committee for the Abolition of Student
Assembly would like to know if you think that
our representative student government, marred
with internal disputes and absorbed with
personal and organizational interests, should
be replaced with a New England town meeting

What is a New England town meeting? If you
would like an answer, follow this URL:

Benefits of a New England town meeting

- Direct democracy: you are in control
- Town meetings have nearly 400 years of history
as proof of their effectiveness
- The student body takes responsibility for
its own legislative successes and failures
- Every student can easily submit legislation
- Every student can easily vote
- Every student is considered a political equal
- No more big egos, no more résumé padding

The Committee for the Abolition of Student
Assembly, if there is enough student support,
would like to explore how, within the College's
rules, SA can be replaced with a town meeting.
This requires some planning and a great deal
of student input; that's why we're asking you
for your opinion.

If enough students reply to this blitz with
their support, we'll dedicate our time and
energy to finding out how to make it happen.

Pope Benedict XVI

Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger of Germany was elected Pope today, after 3 previous votes. CNN has the article here: German cardinal elected new pope.

While I am not Catholic. the choice of Ratzinger seems rather controversial, since he is a leading conservative theologian and former member of the Hitler Youth movement. Still, at his advanced age of 78, it seems as if he is to serve as a buffer between the progressive John Paul II and a more liberal third-world future pope.

Monday, April 18, 2005

Big Brother Meets Sorority Life

The latest in a series of proposed measures that seem to take a page out of Orwell's book, this NPR story reports on the potential creation of a database of college students as a way to gather information about universities: "Proposed Database of College Students Raises Concerns". While the idea of an active database that links information about everything from your race to your major is chilling, there's got to be something like it already in existence. Additionally, if they would admit that one reason for the system is to track potential terrorist threats, the proposal, while still objectionable, would at least be less deceitful.

Sunday, April 17, 2005

Not an Objectifying Photo at All...

Drudge has it that everyone's favorite Republican Barbie is going to be on the cover of Time, Coulter to be on Cover of Time Mag. Is anyone else as disturbed by the prominence of her legs in the photograph as I am. I know Ms. Coulter is no feminist, but the sexy shot strikes me as slightly objectifying, and perhaps not the best if she means to legitimitize herself as a political authority.

Saturday, April 16, 2005

The NeoCons Get Involved...

Following the rule that the business of the Ivy League is the business of the world (google "Summers, Larry" and "Harvard") The Weekly Standard weighs in on the Trustee Election in The Dartmouth Insurgency (via Dartlog). As could be predicted, they come down in favor of the petition candidates, praising them for their free-speech friendly stance and commenting on the elusive Wright response to the 2001 Zeta Psi debacle. Maybe I'm missing something, but I see the publication of a sex-filled newsletter as different from academic expression. But then again, I don't know all the details of the situation and that's just my gut reaction.

If it Doesn't Kill You...

it keeps your teeth clean. Blogging is a little science heavy today, but that's because the political news is too depressing (more on that later.) This article is scary too, however :Toothpaste cancer alert . Great, yet another thing our doctors tell us to do that may ultimately be harmful.

Paying Homage. Right...

According to this article, Bush has slime-mold beetle named after him , two scientists named three new species of beetles after our President, Vice President, and Secretary of Defence. One of the British scientists involved alleged that "naming the beetles after Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld was intended to pay homage to them." To make matters worse, the species were three of 65 new types of slime mold beetles discovered. Look for the Rumsfield beetles to start claiming that weapons of mass destruction exist in the territory of another species, the Cheney beetles to use their oil connections to profit, and the Bush beetles to mispronounce their full scientific name. Although I doubt I could pronounce "Agathidium bushi Miller and Wheele" either.

Isn't science great?

Friday, April 15, 2005

Does Wireless Not Work in the Palace?

Yet another silly story about the British Royal Family, this one about Prince Harry. Apparerently the Prince performed badly enough on his computer skills diagnostic test for Sanborn, "Prince Harry told to get with IT" that it made the news. It almost makes you forgive the poor boy for the Nazi uniform snafu earlier this year - maybe the poor boy didn't know how to google the outfit and find out what it was.

Thursday, April 14, 2005

Those Crazy MIT Kids

File this one, MIT students�pull prank on conference, under the "too much free time" heading. Apparently some graduate students wrote a computer program to create fake research papers, one of which was subsequently accepted for presentation at a conference. This kind of software seems a professor's worst nightmare.

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Profs: Here to Educate, Not to Inculcate Values

With all the abstracted debate about biases among University professors that has been going on lately, occasionally we tend to overlook that fact that while most professors are liberal, they are not stupid or here only to inculcate politically correct values.

Case in point from a history class this morning. During a discussion of "the civilizing mission" in 19th century southeast Asia, a student asked a clearly liberal professor if he thought similar motives were driving American policy in Iraq. Instead of answering in a way that reflected bias, my professor responded by telling the student he didn't want to answer it and impose his views on the class, and that we would come back to the question during a later discussion of American imperialism.

In my view, this was the perfect response to a question that, while interesting, may have done little besides politicize the debate. It goes to show you that just because a professor subscribes to a political view, he or she won't necessarily involve that view in the classroom. Instances of bias should be looked at on a personal level, and this tarring and feathering of the academic left is getting old.

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Blogs, Blogs, Everywhere

Not content with taking on the Dartlog, Malchow is taking on the world with The Editorial Board, which offers "vox veritatis" and "a bustling forum for news, conservative and moderate opinion, and witty banter." Not sure if there's a pressing need for MORE conservative Dartmouth blogging, but I'm all for yet more snide partisan political commentary, since it's what I supply myself.

Still, in the interest of civility, props to Joe for providing a forum for debate that incorporates multiple voices. Anything that makes the internet less of a wilderness for the voices crying out in it (Dartmouth pun intended) is worth a read.

Bad Tag, Funny Blog

The latest entry into the Dartmouth blogging skirmishes (too lukewarm to actually be called a war) is this entry,Fartlog, a visually accurate spoof of TDR's Dartlog The satiric take-offs of run-of-the-mile Dartlog posts are quite funny. My two reservations are how long Aaron Schlosser '07 can keep this up, since the staff of the Dartlog is quite large, and whether this does anything to further actual debate on campus, as opposed to adding more fire to the liberal-conservative campus divide. Regardless, its still pretty damn funny. Would Schlosser be willing to spoof Malchow too?

Dartmouth on NPR

This morning on NPR, this story by Anthony Brooks, Teach for America Attracts Record Number of College Grads featured interviews with many Dartmouth '05s, highlighting the fact that 11% of the senior class applied to the program. Among those interviewed were Julia Hildreth, Alex Domingez, and Chelsea Nielson.

Saturday, April 09, 2005

Cause for Concern

In light of all the recent debate about anti-Semitism on college campuses, I found an article in the Dartmouth Free Press amazing. In the "Numbers that Count" section, 3 of the numbers were:

69.7 - Percent of expectant Palestinian women within one month of delivery that are anemic, a result of malnutrition. (UN World Health Organization)

35- Percent of breast cancer patients from the Gaza strip who survived as opposed to 70-75% in Israel (Amnesty International)

649- Number of Palestinain children under 17 years old killed by Israeli security forces from Sep. 28, 2000 to March 31, 2005. (Palestinian Human Rights Monitoring Group)

While I by no means feel that all of Israel's actions are defensible, and recognize that there are clear problems with the way many Palestinians are treated, the presentation of such statistics out of context, particularly the last one, is frightening to me because of the blatant anti-Israel sentiment it conveys and the latent anti-Semitism. It would have been just as easy to include an accompanying statistic about the number of Israeli children under the age of 17 killed by suicide bombers, and would have made as salient a point about the horrific human costs of the violence in the Middle East. Additionally, publishing information from the Palestinian Human Rights Monitoring Group also implies a balance. I have to admit that I did a double take when I saw these numbers. While I completely support freedom of the press, the shades of ignorance and hatred in the selection of these numbers scare me. Maybe I am over-sensitive, but in this day and age, especially in light of contemporary events, it is hard not to be.

Love in the Time of Burqas

While the gleefulness with which this story celebrates this flaunting of Islamic law and acceptance of Western norms is a little unsettling, this article, Young lovers in burqas flaunt Afghanistan's rules of attraction, is still an interesting take on modernization in the Islamid world. The image of girls setting up dates in sacred gardens and men trolling the hospital to find educated women is sweet. Remains me a bit of Dartmouth actually...using blitz to set up food court dates and wandering around first floor berry may be the Hanover equivalents.

Friday, April 08, 2005

Kicking a Paper When it's Down

The D just can't catch a break today:

The Little Green Blog: Complaints with today's D

The Dartlog: That Ol' College Try

And neither mention today's Op-Ed, Where to Draw the Line, about the problems with Dartmouth's implicit approval of the drinking culture. The Op-Ed argues that administrative approval was implied by calling the Snow Sculpture "Captain Keggy's Carnival Cruiser." For a more realistic portrayal of the Adminstration's views towards alcohol, this news article, "College-funded 'party packs' provide non-alcoholic alternative" is worth a look.

"Roomies" was great today, however.

Thursday, April 07, 2005

Apparently I'm not the only one

the rest of the blogosphere seems as equally unenamored of the D today as I was.

LittleGreenBlog: The D Sucks

Malchow: The Power of Krugman

Dartlog: Daily Dartmouth Errata

And Prof. Samwick's related discussion of liberals in academia.

Apparently I'm not the only one

the rest of the blogosphere seems as equally unenamored of the D today as I was.

LittleGreenBlog: The D Sucks

Malchow: The Power of Krugman

Dartlog: Daily Dartmouth Errata

And Prof. Samwick's related discussion of liberals in academia.

Apparently I'm not the only one

...the rest of the blogosphere seems as equally unenamored of the D today as I was.

LGB: The D Sucks

Malchow: The Power of Krugman

Dartlog: Daily Dartmouth Errata

And for Prof. Samwick's related discussion of liberals in academia.

HS Debate: The Movie

As if the Kirk Cameron College Debate movie wasn't enough, someone is making a film about the HS Debate World: ***Rocket Science***.

The really sad thing is that I feel like I know the people the main characters are based on.

I wonder if they need writers?

Campus Speech, Anti-Semitism, and The D

The D runs a mini-feature today on the continuing debate about free speech on campus and the existence of a liberal bias in academia. They print 3 articles on the subject, as well as an Op-Ed piece:

Ivies confront free speech uproar: Wright commits to open speech at Dartmouth by Rebekah Rombom '08

Columbia rocked by allegations of anti-Semitism by Rebekah Rombom '08

Prof. exposes dwindling GOP faculty representation by Kristin Kelley '06


Liberal Bias at Dartmouth by Kapil V. Kale '07.

All four articles are interesting and worth reading. The D does not, however, cover the program sponsored by Hillel Monday afternoon, a panel discussion entitled "Roles, Responsibilities, and Relationships of
American Jews with Israel." The program, which featured Prof. Louis Glinert of the AMES department, Prof. Meir Kohn of the Economics Department, and Prof. Ehud Benor of the Religion Department, was a personal, thought-provoking look at how these three professors, all of whom had personal ties to Israel, saw the relationship of American Jewry and the Jewish State.

While the D should have covered the event under any circumstances, reporting on the program would have made even more sense in light of the articles published today for two reasons. The first is that the topic discussed was directly relevant to the issues of contention in the Columbia scandal, and there was some discussion of the questions concerning debate between academics and students on both sides of the Middle East question. Secondly, the panelists represented a wide spectrum of political views, with some decidedly more conservative ideas being expressed. A discussion of both of these issues would have helped bring the more abstract discussion of the Columbia debate and the Klein lecture into a more Dartmouth-Centric context.

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

A Worthy Cause for MoveOn.Org

Normally I'm not the world's biggest MoveOn.Org fan, but this petition, forwarded to me by my mother, I fully support.

Dear MoveOn member,

This morning, the Washington Post and the New York Times each broke new scandals involving Republican Majority Leader Rep. Tom DeLay. According to the Times, DeLay paid his wife and daughter more than $500,000 of his political donors' money over the last four years. And the Post article highlights a seedy 1997 trip DeLay took, underwritten by "a mysterious company located in the Bahamas" that was tied to Russian business interests.

And that's not the only legal or ethical scandal DeLay is involved in. DeLay illegally used corporate funds in support of his plan to re-district Texas, and he went on golf trips with gambling lobbyist Jack Abramoff--two months before DeLay helped kill legislation opposed by the gambling companies.

DeLay's grandstanding on the Terri Schiavo tragedy--which a great majority of the country feels is political opportunism--was the straw that broke the camel's back. Now, some Republicans in Congress are speaking out against DeLay, but most are still too scared of his powerful network of corporate donors. We need to show all of Congress, both Republicans and Democrats, that if they stand up to Tom DeLay we've got their back.

It is time to fire Tom DeLay as House Majority Leader. Please sign our petition urging Congress to remove DeLay from his leader post at the link below.

As the chorus of opposition grows louder, it is important to show that this isn't just a power struggle in Washington but that, in fact, millions of Americans share the same concerns about DeLay's pattern of repeated corruption.

Even the editorial page of The Wall Street Journal, one of the most conservative groups of editors in the country, is offended by the excesses of Tom DeLay. They wrote on March 28, "Mr. DeLay, who rode to power in 1994 on a wave of revulsion at the everyday ways of big government, has become the living exemplar of some of its worst habits."

Among his offenses, Tom Delay:

* Promised a role in drafting legislation to a corporate donor

* Tried to coerce a Congressman for a vote on Medicare

* Allegedly used corporate money given to his PAC to finance Texas campaigns in
violation of state law

* Used Homeland Security resources in a dispute with Democrats in Texas

* Diverted funds from a children's charity for lavish celebrations at the
Republican convention

* Threatened retaliation against interest groups that don't support Republicans

* Stacked the House Ethics committee with representatives who have contributed to
his legal defense fund

* Accepted trips from corporations and later helped kill legislation they opposed

* Accepted trips from the lobbyist for a foreign government in violation of House

* Crippled the effectiveness of the House Ethics Committee by purging
members who had rebuked him

* Pushed for a rules change for the House Ethics process that paralyzed
the panel

* Sought a rule change that would have no longer "required leaders to
step aside temporarily if indicted"

* Paid family members more than $500,000 out of campaign contributions

(See postscript below for a link to citations.)

As Majority Leader, DeLay is the second-ranking leader in the House of Representatives. He is responsible for developing the Republican issue agenda and sets the legislative schedule by selecting which bills the House will consider.

The ranks of government contractors and lobbyists who depend on this legislative authority have slathered DeLay, his cronies and related organizations with millions of dollars.

Please sign our petition today urging Congress to fire Tom Delay!

After you sign the petition please forward this e-mail to your friends,family and colleagues. They need to know about the egregious actions of this congressional leader.

Thanks for all you do.

--Tom Matzzie and the MoveOn PAC Team
Wednesday, April 6, 2005

Tom Delay is the Republican I find scariest - next to certain members of TDR, of course (sarcasm intended). Maybe these scandals will finally take him down.

Goodbye Saul Bellow

According to CNN, Noble and Pulitzer Prize Winner Saul Bellow has died. Nobel, Pulitzer�winner Saul Bellow dies

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Ding Dong the Delay is Dead

Papers Link Delay to Russian Lobby

All I can say is HA! Maybe THIS ethical violation with exterminate the exterminator.

Sunday, April 03, 2005

Animal Hijinks

The Times publishes this infographic today, A Guide to the Republican Herd, which categories the current Republican party in a way that would be inoffensive if the graphic didn't refer to the party as a herd and use images of elephants to indicate groups. In the words of my Republican roomate -"there are worses things to be than a a pack of asses."

what idiot editor came up with this idea?

Turning Japanese

The The New York Times > Magazine this morning is all about Japan and Japanese culture, from articles on Murakami to slideshows of Tokyo girls. All that is missing is Gwen Stefani and the Harajuko girls.

Saturday, April 02, 2005

Give Him Back his TV Show

I normally find Salon a little too liberal, and Bill Maher is usually not my lefty political satirist of choice, but this short piece, | Abstinence pledges suck -- literally, is just too laugh-out-loud funny, and still gets the point across.

Admissions Fun

It's college acceptance time again, and Dartmouth seems to be doing well, according to this article in Friday's D, '09 Acceptance Rate Hits Record Low. The College's acceptance rate fell to 16.8, and the average SAT scores rose. One sentence in the article, however, particularly caught my eye.

Furstenberg also noticed an increased percentage of southern and western acceptances, comprising 18 and 20 percent respectively."

The flipside of such a statistic is that acceptances from the Northeast have fallen, presumably including those from good ole' Long Island. This statistic may help explain why the admissions game seems to be increasingly harder for students from my high school and similar schools. I wonder how much of a factor geography plays, and whether it in turn influences the character of a class. All I know is that by the time my sister applies in 3 years, it may be ever more impossible to get into a "good" school from LI.

This Sure Doesn't Help Dartmouth...

In its annual "non-academic reasons to attend a college" article, CNN takes a break from praising "Dorms like Palaces" to highlight the pull of the Recreation Center - Recreation centers used to woo students . While Dartmouth students definitely succumb to the lure of the rock-climbing wall and the hum of the treadmills in Kresge, no one would say that Berry gym swayed them towards our College. It's a shame really, since while I do not support wasting money, better athletic and recreational facilities would be appreciated, especially by those who chose to attend for more substantial reasons.

Friday, April 01, 2005

Could They not get Pie?

In the wake of the recent pie-ings of conservative pundits Ann Coulter and William Kristol, Pat Buchanan has been doused with salad dressing].

Wonder what kind of dressing they used?