Tuesday, May 31, 2005

WH Style File

From Jenna's BF to Bush's personal aide, Blake Gottesman makes the transition, while staying humble all the while, according to this NY Times article, From Jenna's Ex to a Presidential Jeeves

Choice quote:
"He also said on 'Ask the White House' that Charlie Young, the name of the character who is the president's personal aide on 'The West Wing,' the NBC television show, 'probably gets a lot more dates than I do.'"

Hmmm, I wonder if that's because Dule Hill is cuter. And fictional.

Update: I've been informed that Gottesman is Jewish...hmmm

Ex-F.B.I. Aide Claims He's 'Deep Throat' in Magazine Article

Via the New York Times
so why did he choose to come forward now?

Two sides of the same problem...

The American obsession with the female waistline continues.

This article, Fashion's Larger Problem, from the Washington Post, discusses the problems plus size teens and young women (sizes 14-18) have finding fashionable clothing.

Over on AP (link via Dartblog), this article, Cult-Like Lure of 'Ana' Attracts Anorexics - Yahoo! News discusses the growing fascination of eating disorders and the virtual support network for them. Scary stuff, and indicative of America's divided attitude towards female beauty. God forbid women try too hard to be thin, but there's little room in popular culture for women who are overweight.

Trying So Hard...

to like John Tierney now that David Brooks isn't quite cutting it. But his Op-Ed this morning, The Urge to Win, makes it difficult. The article is a purported response to women who feel that they are as competitive as men, arguing through the lens of competitive scrabble that men are more likely to waste their time trying to be the best in such a field because it gives them some reproductive advantage. Still, it comes off as sexist, especially with this line, as funny as it is:

"Of course, just because men evolved with an impulse for competition doesn't mean that it still always makes sense, either for society or for the men themselves. Perhaps winning a Scrabble tournament with a $25,000 prize makes you a better marriage prospect. But I'm not sure how many women want to marry someone who spends his weekends memorizing alphagrams."

Do I sense a little bitterness on the part of Mr. Tierney?

Sunday, May 29, 2005

In honor of my SE Asia class...

This article, Asia's Democratic Values, is from the WSJ and by respected scholar Fukuyama. Worth a read.

The Genius of Paris

The rich dumb blonde strikes again, and its great, as WaPo feels the need to report today in Mama Warned Us About Fast Food And Fast Women. The article discusses her borderline-softcore ad for burger chain Carl Jr., and the fact the company is relying on the publicity over the ad's lewdness to increase its exposure, not actual airing of the ad. The whole thing is kind of funny. I like the way that Carl Jr. is manipulating our obsession with preventing the prurient to increase its brand recognition. And any article that contains the following paragraph is worth a read:

"Hilton is a remarkable creation: a young woman (she's 24) with a famous last name (she is the great-granddaughter of hotel magnate Conrad Hilton) and no visible talent other than an uncanny ability to keep attracting attention. Unlike fellow blondes Jessica Simpson, who play-acts at being ditsy, or Pamela Anderson, who seems terribly calculating and obvious, Hilton seems to come by her dimness the honest, natural way. On her reality show, "The Simple Life"; on Letterman and Leno's couch she comes off as something uncontrived, even genuine -- a rich, good-time gal without a complicated thought in her head. Her infamous "private" sex tape that appeared all over the Internet did nothing to harm her party-hearty cred."

The world is full of poor little rich kids, but Paris isn't one of them. Good for her, and glad she was able to actually eat something along the way.

Friday, May 27, 2005

The Jesus Diet

Apparently the newest diet craze is to eat like JC himself: Americans look to Jesus for diet

""Jesus ate primarily natural foods in their natural states - lots of vegetables, especially beans and lentils.

"He would have eaten wheat bread, a lot of fruit, drunk a lot of water and also red wine.

"And he would only eat meat on special occasions, maybe once a month, just like the parable of the prodigal son who ate fatted calf."

Sounds like common sense to me. And:

"He followed the Levitical laws. He would not have eaten pigs and rabbits or fish that did not have scales, such as crabs and shrimps. "

You mean a Jew living in Israel at the start of the Common Era would have kept Kosher? Wow. Now that's a diet.

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

How TDR Spends its Summer?

Jeff Horwitz goes to conservative youth leadership camp at Morton Blackwell's Leadership Institute, in My right-wing degree. I feel like TDR has mastered many of the techniques discussed, however.

The College as Think Tank

Anyone want to create a Dartmouth chapter of the Roosevelt Institution, a Stanford-based policy research group? Looks interesting...

Women and the Workplace, Again

NY Times guest columnist Matt Miller takes on the issue of women and the workplace today in Listen to My Wife . He argues that women alone shouldn't have to try and balance work and family, and that it should be an issue for both sexes. He advocates changing how we structure jobs and the workplace. While this is a great idea, and it is refreshing to see men addressing this topic in a positive way, Miller fails to specify just how the workplace should be changed. Oops.

Tuesday, May 24, 2005


Jonathan Yardley's WaPo review of "The Washingtonienne" by former staffer and blogger Jessica Cutler, Capitol Hill Siren's Tell-All Fiction, could have been harsher. In between rants at the publishing industry, (was his great American novel rejected?), he finds time to argue that

"What's even more remarkable than this publishing coup is that for about a quarter of the way through, "The Washingtonienne" gives hints of being lively, funny and agreeably in-your-face. Eventually it runs out of steam, but for a while Cutler -- in the voice of Jacqueline Turner, her singularly unheroic heroine -- sticks pins in a lot of deserving targets. Washington itself, for example, is "an easy place" for sex because, lacking "those industries that attract the Beautiful People, such as entertainment and fashion," being "full of young single people and bored married people," even a girl of modest looks can find plenty of action."

Not bad for a book blantantly written to hold on to 15 minutes of fame.

Monday, May 23, 2005

Will this Make TDR as Irrelevant as All Other Campus Publications

Roomies in The D today takes an indulgent potshot at TDR: Roomies

While the comic is funny, the sentiment is interesting - what would all campus publications have to write about if the administration was more popular?

Certainly not campus events, as can be seen by the lack of coverage given to Milan Culture Night in The D today. The event was Saturday, which is plenty of time to write something up. Milan put a lot of work into an event which was well-publicized and well-attended, so to not cover it is a serious omission.

New Op-Ed

Shameless self-plug: Examining the New SAT

Malchow responds here: "Another Look at the SAT I Version 2"

Sunday, May 22, 2005

With Friends Like These...

Totally unrelated to politics, Dartmouth, or other important topics, but still worth a read: Friend fatale

Traister's arguments should resonate with any woman who has experienced these type of falling outs, and may also help explain to guys why girls care so much about fights with their best friends.

God and Man in the Ivy League

The Little Green Blog beat me to posting on this NY Times article, "On a Christian Mission to the Top," but I still think it's worth highlighting. The article discusses the proliferation of Evangelical Christian groups among the well-paid and well-educated, particularly at Ivy League Universities. One of the subjects interviewed posited that it was easy to raise money to proselytize in the Ivory Tower because, according to Brown Campus Crusade leader Geoff Freeman,

"It is easy to sell New England in the Midwest," as Mr. Freeman put it later. Midwesterners, he said, see New Englanders as "a bunch of heathens."

This statement strikes me for a number of reasons. First, it is both funny and inflammatory, which is obviously one of the reasons it was published. Second, it conveys an "us" vs. "them" mentality often associated with the liberal left. The Democrats are often criticzed for branding everyone west of the Appalachias and before the Rockys as bible-thumping rednecks. It is interesting to see that us New Englanders are stereotyped just as strongly, and it is indicative of a greater problem in American politics. Finally, the article fails to look at Evangelical groups from other religions, such as the Chabad movement in Orthodox Judaism. Christianity is not the only religion to see a revival of traditionalist practices aimed at the young and educated.

Thursday, May 19, 2005

Bash Mitzvah Musings

When asked by the DJ what the theme of my Bat Mitzvah was, my mother's response was "How about Judaism?" Then again, this is also the woman who told him to "pretend that this was the bat mitzvah of Tipper Gore's child" and to not play explicit music. Thanks Mom.

Regardless, this article in Slate, Bar Mitzvah Madness, explores the increasing commercialization and decreasing ritual value of the "Bash Mitzvah." She argues that the way to save it is to eliminate the age requirement. I'm not sure I agree with that idea, but I'm a fan of anyone over the age of 13 who didn't have one undergoing the ritual at a later date.

Beauty is in the Eye of Technology

Had to post this article, Enjoy It, Julia, While It Lasts , because of the title. It's a fascinating analysis of how, as our technology for film and television changes, our standards of beauty change to accomodate these new techniques.

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Columnists for Sale

The NY Times has announced that they are going to start charging $49.95 a year for access to select content, such as the Op-Ed columns and the archives. In response, Timothy Noah of Slate argues that most people would not use the archive service, and could be expected to pay $25 to read the columnists. However, since not all columnists are created equal, he's asked people to allocate their $25 among the 8: Columnists for Sale - The New York Times's risky experiment

My allocation:
David Brooks - $4
Maureen Dowd - $4
Thomas L. Friedman - $4
Bob Herbert -$ 1
Nicholas D. Kristof - $2
Paul Krugman - $2
Frank Rich - $4
John Tierney - $4

Now only imagine if the The D asked people to rate their regular columnists...

Monday, May 16, 2005

Meshugganah in the Holy Land

Reuters via the NY Times: Madonna Feud Rocks Israel's Diplomatic Boat

Apparently the Israeli Ambassador to the US tried to investigate the wife of the Israeli Foreign Ministry for firing one of his embassy aides who failed to get her an audience with Madonna. The Foreign Minister's response was that the investigation was an attempt to deflect attention from the inquiry into charges of verbal abuse against the ambassador's wife.

Because it's not like there are real problems in Israel or anything.

OpinionJournal Flashback

This article from the archives of the Opinion Journal, "Liberal Fundamentalism, was actually published in 1984. The parellels to our current situation are striking. Which is of course why they republished it, but still worth a look.

Update: Dartblog found it too:

Pawn to Queen

Interesting article in the NY Times today along the "anything boys can do girls can do better" vein, On Boards Without Boys, Girls Reassert Their Power. It discusses an all-girls chess tournament, touching on the historical underrepresentation that girls have in the activity, as well as some of the reasons for the lack of female chess players. What is interesting, however, is that the story opens with a vingette of a girl flirting and complimenting her way to an advantage, and ends with a description of the same girl as flirtatious. Maybe that's just how ninth grade girls are (flirty and interested in clothes), but it does seem incongruous with the tenor of the article.

Sunday, May 15, 2005

Variations on a Theme

Anyone else think the NY Times is taking party identifications a little too seriously? The Op- Ed page today is:

"Just How Gay is the Right? by Frank Rich

"Liberal Bible-Thumping"
by Nicholas Kristof


"Meet the Poor Republicans" by David Brooks

Friday, May 13, 2005

Happy Green Key!

Sheer brillance from Heinz in The D: Guy and Fellow

Neff attacks in TDR: Neff's So Dartmouth

Thursday, May 12, 2005

Robinson and Zywicki Win Trustee Election

The college confirms in an Official Press Release what Dartlog, Dartblog, LGB and VitW have been speculating on all day.

So what does those mean for the college? I'm honestly not sure yet...

More on Dartmouth Blogs

Over on Dartblog, this post, Campus Blogosphere Rising, offers an interesting take on the problem with the campus blogosphere. Malchow waxes philosophical about the problems with liberal bloggers as a whole, and engages in some self-congratulation for the open-mindedness with which he engages in debate (to Joe's credit, his blog does often respond to criticism). But while his arguments about engaging your opponents, not merely lampooning them are sound, the whole post seems a little nasty, especially with the not-so-veiled attacks on LGB.

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

The D's Op-Ed Page - Now with "Repeat" Feature

(I tried to post this last nite, but Blogger ate it. Let's try this again)

I always feel bad mocking The D, mainly because its so easy sometimes, but this needs to be commented on. I know how hard it is to find column topics, (I'm taking suggestions for my next submission) but sometimes reading the page to find out what your colleagues are writing can avoid potentially embarassing overlaps like this one.

Yesterday, staff columnist Dan Belkin '08 wrote this column "Runaway Media," lambasting the sensationalism of the MSM.

"Perhaps "hard" news stories are often delegated to the backburner because the public simply demands "lighter fare." In a fitting microcosm, President Bush's latest primetime press conference began 30 minutes earlier than scheduled due to lobbying from NBC. NBC did not want the press conference to interrupt the "The Apprentice." The Donald bested the President. Across the entire nation, a collective expletive from American teens could be heard as the press conference forced the postponement of "The O.C." (This decision may signify that Karl Rove is finally conceding the youth vote.) The nation has come a long way from Franklin Delano Roosevelt's "fireside chats" that loyally drew 70 percent of the American public to hear about the "hard" news of the day. Though Americans were loath to surrender their Thursday night entertainment, the public has a responsibility as well along with the media. Americans must demand the abandonment of excessive, even if entertaining, media circuses for the sake of the most "newsworthy" stories."

Noble sentiments, to be sure, but similar to those espoused by contributing columnist Deborah Wassel '07 in her May 2nd column, "Garbage In, Garbage Out." Wassel deplores the taste of the American public for tabloid-worthy news items:

"The point is that not all the blame can be placed on the news media itself. Half the blame lies with the public.

The American people have been dumbed down to the point where they no longer have the capacity to demand better quality news.

They don't care much for valuable news.

People want explosions. They want prostitution busts. They want shiny things.

Garbage in, garbage out, as my fifth grade teacher used to say.

The American people need to wake up and tear their eyes away from the television long enough to realize they're being manipulated."

Both articles are well-written and interesting, but the overlap is just sad. It's indicitive of a great problem with campus debate, namely that there is none because no one pays attention to what anyone else says.

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Harbringer of Things to Come?

Monday, May 09, 2005

America's Top High Schools

Newsweek has the list: The Complete List of the 1,000 Top U.S. Schools

My Alma Mater is #189...ouch.

You Can't Win

The use of the word "I" is something I try to avoid when posting, but apparently even when I use it in a way that I intend merely to convey my opinion or make a self-deprecating or ironic comment, I'm still self-centered and superfluous. Apparently humor is not something appropriate on "serious" blogs (who knew I was serious)

As Scott Glabe/Kevin Parkman wrote in The Dartmouth Review of Blogs
"But, lest I wax too philosophical, let me get to my main point, which is that such blogs are a downright waste of time—for author and readers alike. One might object that the reader of personal monologues shouldn’t be surprised to discover the drivel described above, but the same self-centered superfluousness pervades even the “serious” blogs at Dartmouth. Julia Bernstein ‘07, who publishes the general-interest blog “Outvox,” concluded a recent post concerning Dartmouth’s gender pay gap with “Note to self: When considering jobs in Academia in the future, stay away from Hanover.”

I’ll be sure to email you a reminder, Ms. Bernstein, as well as making a note to myself that you’ll one day be an Important Figure in Academia."

Thanks, TDR, for always making sure ad hominen attacks are part of the discussion.

The TDR's list of Dartmouth Blogs is worth checking out, however.

Sunday, May 08, 2005

Israeli Professors and the AUT

A fascinating article, Israelis Need Not Apply, by Fanzia Oz-Salzberger, a historian of British history at the University of Haifa. The U of Haifa is one of two Israeli universities now being boycotted by the AUT, an association of British academics, because of supposed collusion with the Israeli government against the Palestinians. Oz-Salzberger argues that the evidence for the boycott is based on the case of a libelous thesis, which was failed because of the falsification of evidence, not because of a political agenda. More importantly, she argues that the boycott by British-intellectuals is overly political, anti-intellectual and a blow to free speech. It is also ironic considering the role the British had in creating the current political situation in the Mid-East. The argument is definitely worth a read for people interested in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the interaction between Academia and politics, and free speech.

Schlosser Strikes Again...

Ok, so I don't know for sure that Fartlog creator Aaron Schlosser is behind the latest addition to the Dartmouth blogging scene, The Little Pinko Blog, but I'd be willing to bet on it. The left-leaning webblog, clearly a parody of The Little Green Blog, is filled with outragously socialist spoofs of the culture-savvy, bush-bashing posts on LGB. The style is akin to that of Fartlog, with even the name of alleged poster having the same nonsensical ring to it. Althogether amusing...good job Mortimer Flavin Merrykinder, whoever you are. We can only guess who will be the next target of your spoofing abilities...Neel Shah's OC Column, maybe?

Derby Fun

As I'm sure all the news sources have reported by now, the 131st Derby was won by the 50-1 longshot Giacomo. This also means that Steinbrenner's wonderhouse, Bellamy Road, came in a dismal 7th. Which is just about the rank the Yankees now hold in the NL East. At least they won yesterday...

Thursday, May 05, 2005

Dead On

As much as I love D.Bro, I'm not the biggest fan of his NY Times Column. But today's column, Stuck in Lincoln's Land, is dead on. A sensitive, considerate treatment of faith, politics, and agnostics in the US.

(Blogging will be light for the rest of the week, since I'll actually be in NY, not just in a NY state of mind.)

Tuesday, May 03, 2005

At Dartmouth, Advanced Wi-Fi

The NY Times' annual "Dartmouth is tech-friendly" article: At Dartmouth, Advanced Wi-Fi

Sunday, May 01, 2005

Filial Piety Gone Awry

Apparently the grandson of the late architect Mies van der Rohe, Dirk Lohan, bid almost $3000 to smash a window at Crown Hall, the main building of Mie's IIT architecture school, The New York Times > Arts > Art & Design > Take That, Grandpa. I can understand the drama of the moment, but I think this takes the need to break with tradition a little too far. My grandfather is also an architect, who worked with Mies and some of the other German expats, but I would never dream of doing something like this. Then again, there would never be an eBay auction to smash any of Grandpa Landsberg's windows, perhaps fortunately.