Re: George Neumayr’s O’Connor’s Great Con:
Gosh! Just when I figured that Rep. Dick Gephardt’s (D-Pandering) bizarre threat that, if elected president, he’d overrule any Supreme Court decision he didn’t like by Executive Order made him a natural lock for this week’s EOTW award, I happened upon George Neumayr’s outstanding article O’Connor’s Great Con.
There can be no doubt about it. This week’s EOTW award winner has to be USSC Justice Sandra Day O’Connor who, as Mr. Neumayr so succinctly put it, “casting about for a rationale to justify bald racial discrimination in the academic world, … [invented] a new ‘mission’ for universities.”
— Samuel Keck
Indian Wells, CA
Good article, right on target.
May I leave aside for the moment the mission redefinition from teaching to “diversity”?
The courts position seems to take for granted that diversity is a good thing. Is there any evidence supporting this notion? How does the goodness of diversity manifest itself? Is diversity equally good for all concerned, or is it only good for some?
What if it were good for part of the (school) population and bad for part? Is there a way to calculate the balance? (Oh, wait. That might begin to look like a point system.) Diversity may be good for the minority person admitted to further that goal, but it is bad for the non-minority person excluded as a result.
Without any evidence to support their position, the university (and the court) claim there are benefits accruing from diversity. What are those benefits?
I suspect the universities promote diversity for the very reason that there are no specific benefits known or promised, therefore there is no way to evaluate the goodness of a diversity program.
Now combine the inability to evaluate the benefits with the mission corruption of diversity to see how damaging this decision really is. Universities will now admit lesser qualified students, (excluding some more qualified students), and provide for them either a diluted educational experience or fail them from the current one.
That is a bad thing, helpful to no one. Our society will be worse off as a result.
— Richard Renken
HOW LOW CAN YOU GO?
Re: The Washington Prowler’s Sinking Fast:
From today’s Prowler column: “Sen. John Edwards in sinking in the polls as he attempts to run for president. “
How can Edwards possibly be sinking? He was never afloat to begin with.
Gephardt and Dean are the only two candidates worth paying attention to, as they are the only two who can win the nomination (unless Graham wins the money derby in a big way). I’ve been saying for months, everybody else is just clutter.
— Sean Parnell
THINKING OUT OF THE FOX:
Re: The Washington Prowler’s Cable Ready Gore:
To quote you: “For example, Time magazine and others have made much of Gore’s dabbling in talks about starting up a possible cable alternative news source to compete against Fox News. (Funny, that was what everyone else in the civilized world thought MSNBC and CNN were for.)”
MSNBC hiring the likes of Joe Scarborough and Michael Savage as hosts puts it pretty far away from the left. They’re trying to out-Fox Fox, and it’s obvious to any “civilized” mind.
CNN is tilting so far right they’re about to fall over. Both MSNBC and CNN see how popular you can be by waving the flag, hyping the war, shamelessly shilling and prostituting yourself to the right while presenting simple sound-bite stories. Don’t go too much in-depth, now, you’ll only confuse your viewers. They don’t deal too well with complex topics, y’know.
— Steve in
Re: R. Emmett Tyrrell, Jr.’s That’s Howard Dean:
I wish to assure Mr. Tyrrell that Howard Dean is the former Governor of Vermont, emphatically not New Hampshire! I live in New Hampshire. Vermont abuts our state, on our left side, appropriately enough. Although we are geographically contiguous, politically they are further to the let of us than any State west of the Mississippi! We are in the process of renaming one of our White Mountains “Mount Reagan,” so please do not try to associate us with Mr. Dean.
— W. B. Heffernan, Jr.
Your article about Dean was quite interesting, to say the least. Howard Dean and myself were freshmen legislators from Burlington back in 1983. I was from the conservative working class section known as the “new north end” and he was from the yuppie, liberal “south end.” Needless to say we are completely opposite in our philosophies. Dean became governor upon the death of Richard Snelling, a long-time Republican Governor, back in 1991, when Dean was Lt. Gov. What is not being said about Dean’s tenure as Governor of Vermont is the double standard and back handedness of his actions. While he pushed through a ban on clear cutting, he clear cut 40 acres he owned a week before the law was to take effect. While he pushed through his version of health care reform, he made it hard for insurance companies to do business in Vermont, ensuring that more people would be uninsured thus justifying his program. While he pushed for his commuter train for just a few of his friends in a little town south of Burlington, he blocked the building of a circumferential highway around Essex that was needed to ensure IBM would stay in Vermont and not build their new plant in New York state. His State Supreme appointees have stood Vermont’s constitution on its head with the Brigham ruling (Act 60) and the Baker ruling (Civil Union). I could go on but this will suffice for now. maybe in the future when Dean is mentioned, his actual record as Governor of Vermont will also be mentioned for what it really is.
— Pete Chagnon
Al Martin’s letter on modern music, if you can call it that, hit the nail right on the head. Also, in regard to what is now called music, I have a dilemma; what is the worst invention in history, the electric guitar or the car alarm? Both are obnoxious and difficult to ignore.
— Tom Bullock
West Covina, CA
Greg Barnard asks in Reader Mail (6/24), “Can anyone believe, twenty-five years from now, that there will be Oldies stations playing Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit,” or anything from Britney Spears?’
“Teen Spirit” will be a fixture on oldies stations in 25 years. It will be played so often the DJs will hate it, if they don’t already. I think there are three or four Nirvana songs (or should I say “songs?”) that may still get airplay 25 years from now, but if there is only one, it will be “Smells Like Teen Spirit.” Why? Because it rocks. I haven’t gotten tired of it in twelve years; I don’t expect to in the next 25.
Britney Spears? Dunno. As far as I know, I’ve never heard anything
— Bruce Holder
To the fellow — and I’m sorry, sir, but you come off like the sputtering, cardigan-sporting dean in a tired frat house flick — who actually believes that, twenty-five years from now, the oldies stations won’t be playing Nirvana’s biggest smashes: You are regrettably unaware of some key components of the pop culture dialectic, and I have no choice but to personally educate you on the most essential issues at hand. While I shudder and, quite frankly, scoff at the thought of Britney Spears, whose star has already plummeted, managing to garner long-term corporate radio play anywhere except Japan at any point in the distant future, Nirvana has, since the early 90’s, basically been the sweetest yardstick by which a thoughtful critic measures the passion and potency of a rock and roll band.
Their heyday obviously passed with the death of singer Kurt Cobain nine years ago, but their legacy is incredibly profound and seeing as sixth-graders still stuff the baggy side-pockets of cut-off shorts with change and run down to Columbia House to pick up a copy of “In Utero,” and 30-something moms in suburban ranch houses probably lull their crabby babes to sleep with a few tracks off the Unplugged album, I am positive that Nirvana’s music will be, if it is not already, riding the classic rock airwaves in twenty-five years because the demographic that grew up with it will be alive and financially solvent enough to hold the attention of commercial radio advertisers. Why, only last week, three of my coolest old college buddies and I rented a cheap motel room, plowed through several large jugs of Rebel Yell bourbon, and listened, again and again, to “Aneurysm”, an agonizing, beautifully cathartic Nirvana ditty, whilst jumping up and down atop the rickety bed-frames, splashing our drinks about, nearly sobbing, howling the lyrics — those primal, searing incantations etched permanently into our generation’s collective memory — until our throats were painfully sore and our limbs could flail no longer. “Come on over/Do the twist/Love you so much/It makes me sick!”
Unfortunately, I digress. My main point is that you are probably relatively old, and that you, and others who doubt the durability of my highly legitimate pop music icons, must realize — and this is a big one here — that stylistic trends shift with the passage of time, not based on their perceived quality, and that, what constitutes a “golden oldie” now will no longer be recognized as such by as substantial a segment of the general populace in twenty-five years even if that music represents pure elative bliss to you. Sure, people of all ages will continue to discover good music — old, new and obscure — at various junctures in their lives, but there are nonetheless some generalized social and cultural barriers to the digestion of dramatically divergent forms of music that are difficult to transcend. In other words, you can keep your Benny Goodman and I can keep my drug-addled late 1990’s four-chord dissonance, and at the end of the day, hopefully, we’ll all have our commercial-free hour of non-stop good-times golden oldies.
“Where were you in 1992?” booms the frisky radio-guy voice over the splendid speaker system in my brand-new ultra-hot mid-life-crisis-machine sports-car twenty-five years from now. Cue the intro to “Smells Like Teen Spirit” and an audio montage of inter-woven voices urging everyone to mosh vigorously. I scratch my ever-expanding bald spot and reach guiltily for a cigarette.
Of course, being an inclusive person, I’d just as soon meet you somewhere in the middle — perhaps at a Love concert circa 1966.
— A. Simmons
Re: Brandon Crocker’s News From the Front:
Brandon Crocker’s piece was hilarious. Has he tried sending it to the New York Times?
He reminded me of the comments made by Senator Patty Murray (D-Washington) about how popular Osama Bin Laden was because he had built day care centers among other things.
What surprised me most about her comment was why would day care centers be needed when Osama didn’t allow women to work or go to school. And since women were also denied health care, those health care centers he built must have been only for his soldiers.
Do Democrats ever think before they speak?
— Greg Barnard
Re: George Neumayr’s Hit and Run Liberals:
“Hit and Run” is a great article. It was sent to me by an old friend. I live in the U.S. for many years and have never found anyone who spells his name like mine.
— Gunter Neumayr
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