Regarding Who Will Rule

Alas, there is no such thing as moral purity:

“The major problem – one of the major problems, for there are several – one of the many major problems with governing people is that of whom you get to do it; or rather of who manages to get people to let them do it to them.

“To summarize: it is

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First Day: Group Dynamics

go slowSMALL.jpg

Mike reached up and patted this sign to remind me to slow down. ­čÖé I’d asked the class why I’d gone off on a particular tangent….it related, but I had to pause for a moment, back up, where did I begin? How did I arrive where I was? What was the point?!
I came across the sign near the hallway … Read more...

i agree: “the fierce urgency of now”

“Obama received Secret Service protection early in the campaign after unspecified threats. It is not a subject his wife likes to talk about. “She doesn’t allow herself to go there,” says Valerie Jarrett, Michelle Obama’s close friend, who says Michelle has not raised the subject with her. “It would paralyze her to think like that.” Michelle’s brother, Craig Robinson, who

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serious “freedom” of expression

Recently (December 12), I received a joke over email:

A driver is stuck in a traffic jam on the Tehran-Ghom Motorway.
Nothing is moving.
Suddenly a man knocks on the window. The driver rolls down his window
and asks, “What’s going on?”
“Terrorists down the road have kidnapped Ahmadi Nejad. They’re asking
for 100 million tomman ransom.
Otherwise they’re going

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Freedom from Fear Day

“…who demonstrates patriotism today&emdash;the critics who stand fast by our foundational values? Or those who would ignore our traditions by reaching quickly for the base and the brutal? No real patriot today, no citizen who is concerned about the fate of our fellow citizens in uniform, can be silent on this issue.”

Remembering December 7
Scott Horton
Harper’s
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more of this

In keeping with Kenneth Burke’s mission to purify war, the use of social science to shift problem-solving from violence to conversation is a welcome development.
Burke says, “language… [is] the ‘critical moment’ at which human motives take form” (from GM 318, in Kenneth Burke: Rhetoric, Subjectivity, Postmodernism by Robert Wess).
Army Enlists Anthropology in War Zones, a feature story … Read more...

Democracy in Action in Burma

On September 27, several of the world’s most reputable news sources reported on events in Myanmar (what most Americans know as Burma).
The Economist: On the Brink: How Myanmar’s people rose up against its regime&emdash;and the regime rose up against its people.
The Associated Press: Myanmar Troops Kill 9 More Protesters
Today, there is evidence the brutality may have … Read more...

in retrospect

Bob Woodward (of Watergate fame) interviewed the late President Gerald Ford back in 2004. I remember Ford for pardoning Nixon, an act which incensed my father. My introduction to politics was seeing the movie, All the President’s Men, when I was thirteen. I don’t think I had seen too many movies yet, as I recall feeling quite grown up … Read more...