“Let it rip.”

by Eric on April 22, 2008

Over at our joint I’ve been doing a fair bit of “this day seventy-five years ago” because of the anniversary of Roosevelt’s hundred days and, well, because. This one may hold some interest for an international readership:

On this day in 1933, British Prime Minister Ramsay MacDonald delivered an address from the National Press Club in Washington, DC, discussing the common problems of the US and UK: “In America at this moment and in Great Britain there are millions of men who want work and can’t get it…. Governments cannot be indifferent to a state of things like that.”

MacDonald looked forward to “wise international government action,” to be established at the upcoming international economic conference. He hoped it would revive “a freely flowing international exchange,” i.e., trade—“Self-sufficiency in the economic field on the part of nations ultimately ends in the poverty of their own people.”

He was mindful of the apparent irony in Britain’s having taken the nationalist, defensive action of going off the gold standard: “Can you imagine that in the early days of that crisis we said gayly and light-heartedly, ‘Let it rip. Let it rip. We will go off gold. There are benefits in being off gold, and we will reap them.'” Obviously he meant the answer to be “no.”—“And so on this currency question, agreement is the only protection.”1
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Disability and Democracy

by Michael Bérubé on April 22, 2008

Our long national nightmare is almost over: today, after seven hard weeks of bowlin’ and shootin’ and drinkin’, the people of Pennsylvania will finally get to vote in our primary. It’s been a critical time in this electoral cycle, a time during which American news media were able to dig hard and deep into the issues that underlie the moral and constitutional crisis to which the Bush Administration has brought us: did Barack Obama meet <a href=”http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/August_Spies”>August Spies</a> at a fundraiser in 1886 before founding the Muslim Brotherhood in 1928? And what about Cindy McCain – <a href=”http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2008/03/05/can-cindy-mccain-really-be-that-perfect/”>can she really be that perfect?</a>

So I thought I’d write a little something about the candidates’ policy positions on disability, because apparently (a) no one knows that the candidates have policy positions on disability and (b) policy positions on disability are not as important as flag pins. Granted, disability policy never swings an election. And why should it? Unless you yourself have a disability, or unless you know someone with a disability, or unless you’re concerned about things like employment or health care, or unless you might get sick or injured someday, or unless you’re planning on aging, disability policy is irrelevant to you.

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Academic Freedom: Some Resources

by Eric on April 22, 2008

By request, a quick bibliography on academic freedom off the top of my… well, not the top of my head, but the top of my EndNote file. With some annotations. I tried to do hanging indents, but WordPress defeated me.
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Academic Freedom: Some Propositions

by Henry on April 22, 2008

I suspect that I disagree with Eric (and very likely other CTites) on how we should think about academic freedom. To clarify this (and also to figure out better for myself why I think what I think), some propositions below. [click to continue…]