Doctor Cleveland's picture

    Women Against Christine O'Donnell

    Monmouth University has a new poll on the Delaware Senate and Congressional races, and it's painful for the Republicans, especially for Senate nominee Christine O'Donnell. The top line: Chris Coons is leading O'Donnell 57% to 38%. O'Donnell has a grisly 58% disapproval rating with only 31% favorable, and Delaware voters consider her unqualified for the Senate by a margin of 57% to 35%. That's pretty painful.

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    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    Petition SUNY Albany

    I've been blogging angrily about SUNY ALbany's foolish attempt to "globalize" by cutting French, Italian, and Russian from the curriculum.

    If you, like me, consider this decision foolish and bad for the education of SUNY Albany's students, please consider signing this petition to restore those crucial languages to SUNY Albany. Thanks.

    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    21st Century Education: SUNY Albany Edition

    Earlier this week, I blogged about SUNY Albany's plan to fulfill its "world-wide" mission by cutting almost all of their European language programs and declaring its intention to fire the full-time tenured faculty who teach French, Russian, Italian, and the classics. At the same time, Albany cut its theater major.

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    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    Palin vs. the Tea Party

     Mudflats has obtained e-mails revealing Todd Palin's anger at Joe Miller, the Republican Tea Partier nominee for Senate from Alaska. They also have e-mails detailing Miller's inside-the-campaign response:

    I just found this in my inbox. This is what we're dealing with. Note the date and the complete misconstruction of what I said.

    Holy cow.

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    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    Could You Repeat That in English? We're Global.


    University administrators in the United States currently have two diametrically opposed habits.

    First, they love to proclaim that their university is becoming more "global." You hear this all the time.

    Second, they tend to cut foreign languages from the curriculum.

    So, for example:

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    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    The Second Amendment Right to Kill You

    Someone with an assault rifle shot up the University of Texas today. And then he killed himself. I'm pretty nauseated just writing that first sentence, considering UT's history. No one is dead but the gunman, who shot himself.

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    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    Teaching Shakespeare and the New Normal

    My profession has a lot of annual rituals, some obvious and some not, and one of them happened the week before last: the annual job list went live (and, in another annual ritual, came precariously close to crashing for the first afternoon).

    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    How They Measure the "End" of a Recession

    So, despite the way the economy feels in your neighborhood, there's been an official statement that the recession ended last June. Yup. All over. That is a perfectly sound statement at the same time it doesn't mean what the rest of us mean by "end of the recession."

    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    Bewitching Jesus


    So, Saturday night the news was that Christine O'Donnell "dabbled into witchcraft" before becoming a hard-line evangelical Christian. And you know what? I wasn't surprised at all. Surely I wasn't surprised that a candidate like O'Donnell was attracted to the supernatural, since all of her politics are about magical thinking. I shrugged it off, and Sunday morning I went to church.

    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    Ask Tamburlaine: Burning Korans Is a Bad Idea

    Who on Earth is crazy enough to burn the Koran? Until two weeks ago, my answer has always been "raging lunatics in Elizabethan drama." You know, stage characters from the age of Shakespeare, the kind of people who are prone to cutting off their own hands, biting off their tongues and spitting them on the stage, or baking their enemies in pies and serving them for dinner. The people who make Hamlet seem well-adjusted. Certainly, I didn't think of it as the kind of thing real people did.

    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    What Happened to America's Economy


    We're always told that economics is a complicated science, which is true, but also that bottom-line practical economics is very simple. But the simple rules we've all learned seem to have landed us into an incomprehensible mess. Let me try to recap what's happened.

    Obviously, every business needs to make a profit to survive. This is done by keeping costs lower than revenues. If you're selling something, you need to make more money selling it than you spend in making or buying the product and in paying your workers.

    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    A Proposal for Our Libertarian and Objectivist Friends

    Since David's recent blog has attracted attention from some self-described Objectivists and Libertarians, let me say a few things to those new commenters.

    It's clear that you feel that all taxes are illegitimate ("stolen money"), and do not believe in any social contract (a la John Locke) by which citizens preserve the maximum freedom possible for them by delegating their personal legislative rights to a freely chosen legislative authority. In short, you don't accept taxation with representation. We can argue the point, but many of you seem quite set in your convictions.

    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    Welcome to Dagblog

    Hi, all. We have some new readers and new reader bloggers today, for a sad reason. Some people are coming here out of fear that Talking Points Memo may shut down its reader blogs.

    Everybody here at Dagblog would like to see the TPMCafe stay open. Most of us met each other, as bloggers, at that page, and we would like to see it thrive.

    But whatever the fate for TPMCafe, we would like you to know that you are all welcome here, and that we will always be glad to see you.

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    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    Obama vs. The Magicians

    President Obama's response to crazy conspiracy narratives about him is predictable and cool. He doesn't want to wade into the nonsense, and in that much he's absolutely right: you can't argue people out of their irrational beliefs. And in general, Obama has put his faith in the public's preference for real-world results over conspiracy theories.

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    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    Deniers and Caretakers, Republicans and Democrats

    American politics these days doesn't make a lot of sense if you expect people to act with sensible self-interest in mind. The Democrats, who were elected with large majorities after the other party's policies led the country to disaster, are apparently afraid to argue for their own policies. The Republicans, after suffering a resounding defeat because their policies led to disaster, have handed their party over to an angry faction that wants to push those failed policies even further.

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    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    Dear Right Wing: Is This War or Not?

    How many times have we heard the phrase War on Terror over the last nine years? How many times have the very people who are now frothing and screaming about the Cordoba House community center (the alleged "Ground Zero Mosque") also screamed the words "War on Terror," and frothed at anyone who they felt was not acting (and I do mean acting) seriously enough about that "War?"

    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    Judicial "Overreach" Since 1783

    The inevitable talking point about Perry v. Schwarzenegger, the case overturning Proposition 8, is that it's "judicial overreach." Reason snaps together the prefabricated argument here. For the last generation at least, the allegedly "conservative" position is that judges should not be allowed to "make law" or to defy the will of the voters by ensuring justice or allowing equal protection under the law.

    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    Undermining Traditional Marriage (Amen!)

    A judge has overturned California’s Proposition 8 as unconstitutional, because it is, and our country has moved one more step toward making marriage a universal right. Those who want marriage rights restricted will complain that this decision “undermines traditional marriage,” and in a way they’re correct. It does. And that's a good thing.

    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    To Refudiate (verb)

    So the whole blogosphere has been tweeting and retweeting about Sarah Palin's accidental coinage of the word "refudiate," and her subsequent comparison of herself to William Shakespeare. (If that's the standard you want your prose judged against, sister, be my guest.) It's a big serving of the regular Palin-coverage stew: mockery of ignorance, defensive anti-intellectualism, just enough genuine condescension to lend the anti-intellectuals credibility.

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