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August 2004

The battle over Kerry's war record is especially intense because it's actually two battles in one. The second battle is between the Old (Busted) Media and the New (Hot) Media of the Net. Several people have made that case, but here's another nice exposition by Hugh Hewitt.

This is actually Hayek's brilliant point in modern form. Systems that use distributed information work better.

And here's another fine application for people tired of reading about Kerry: Real Clear Politics investigates a recent column by Bob Herbert of the New York Times. The results are enlightening, to say the least.

What are your Desert Island Discs?

George Clooney says:

1. "I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry," Hank Williams.
2. "Brick in the Wall," Pink Floyd.
3. "Destination Moon," Dinah Washington.
4. "Nice and Easy," Frank Sinatra.
5. "Artificial Flowers," Bobby Darin.
6. "Who Is He (and What Is He to You)?" Bill Withers.
7. "Moondance," Van Morrison.
8. "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds," William Shatner. (I've never seen Clooney give a completely straight interview.)

Link via Rachel at Banana Republican. (She also points out that many of the famous people answering list a Van Morrison track. Famous people are not all completely crazy.)

Wilfred McClay, SunTrust Bank Chair of Excellence in Humanities at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga:

. . . it seems we are experiencing one of those moments when history shifts its gears, and the accredited elites cannot seem to grasp what is happening, and cling desperately to the pieces of their fraying reputation. It’s a shift that the army of talented bloggers out there, part of one of the most genuinely populist movements ever to arise in modern American politics, has been announcing for a long time---perhaps a little prematurely and self-interestedly, but what they have been predicting is now clearly upon us. The baby-boomer generation’s journalistic and academic elites sought, and gained, control over the nation’s chief organs of knowledge production, accreditation, and communication, with all the enormous power and influence that has entailed. But now the Gramscian monopoly is crumbling, and they cannot see how they are themselves largely to blame for their own discrediting.

Read the whole thing.

Things are getting a wee bit tense at Wharton:

There is an attempt by the faculty to change part of Wharton's culture. When I visited last year, I noticed that student's came and went from classes, which was often sanctioned by the professors. While I understand that can be distracting, I actually liked that part of Wharton's culture. I thought it spoke to the fact that what you get out of Wharton is what you put in - since the student's are adults, I saw the fact that they came in and out of class as a testament to their individual choices.

Well, I guess others didn't like that too much, because this year during preterm the profs have been MAJOR sticklers about being on time. Most of the classes have assigned seats, and we aren't supposed to leave during class. Now I have a couple of problems with that. 1)I want to sit where I want to sit. I want to sit near the front, so I can hear better and can see the board. I think we should be allowed to sit in an area that meets our needs. Like in stats I'm in the second to last row, and I have trouble hearing. I'm a little miffed that the faculty's desire to control the class has affected my ability to learn in class. 2) And I don't ask for permission to pee. If I need to go to the bathroom, I'm going. I'm 29 years old. I didn't ask permission to pee when I was in high school, and I'm sure as hell not going to start now. I'll be damned if I need to ask another adult if I can use the restroom. I'm not on a prison chain gang.