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Wednesday, June 02, 2010


Hockey is the only source of good news in the entire world.

Litbrit sums it up nicely, i.e. terribly, as do George Friedman and Rebecca Traister. And then there’s Gary Coleman.

Really, I was going to try to write something this week about how the financial collapse of 2008 and the Gulf disaster of 2010 are such enormous, systemic failures—so clearly the result of deeply dysfunctional institutions in which both the primary players and the “regulators” were rotten to the core—that they should have provoked sweeping, wholesale reviews and radical changes in business as usual.  We’ve known for some time that there will be no radical changes in business as usual on the financial front.  I’m guessing that we’re not going to see any radical changes in the oil industry or in American energy policy either.  I could be wrong—it’s just a wild guess.  But for almost two years now I’ve been haunted by one sentence from a blog comment by Roger Gathman—“I figure we are in the Soviet endgame zone—say, USSR, 1985, with trivia pursuing corruption as one institution after another fails.” Perhaps President McCain is our very own neo-Konstantin Chernenko, and in 2012 President Issa can be our neo-Boris Yeltsin.  We already have our neo-Chernobyl, thanks.

As for U.S. policy with regard to Israel, of course it is possible to hope that the attack on the Gaza flotilla will be the tipping point that finally provokes a sweeping, wholesale review and a radical change in business as usual.  Last I looked, Turkey was a NATO ally, after all.  You’d think that would count for something.  But for some reason I’m not giving in to that hope.  And I’m not writing that post about total system failures, either.

So that leaves the Stanley Cup finals.  You’ve probably heard that teams who go up 2-0 at home are 31-2 since the Pleistocene.  I also heard someone (Doc?  Olczyk?  Pierre?) note that the last time a team won the first two at home and lost the Cup was last year.  Odd, isn’t it, that no one remembers the other time? No, wait, Cliff Koroll remembers.

This series is going to get very interesting when the scoring lines show up.

Well, I’m off for a while.  Off to this thing, then that thing, then the other thing.  Notice that all these conferences and meetings are taking place at the same time, which poses something of a logistical challenge for me.  Bus to Philly, Amtrak to DC, Metro to College Park, Metro back, bus from DC to State College (no, there’s no way to combine a train to Harrisburg and a bus from Harrisburg if I want to get back by Sunday night, which I do).  Next week, more fun!  Back to the AAUP, then to the CHCI.  So, in other words, my mid May-mid June schedule consists of UCI followed by the MLA, SDS, AAUP, ADE, AAUP, and CHCI.  The MLA has done a few good things lately, and I’ll try to find the time to tell you about them.

Posted by Michael on 06/02 at 08:53 AM
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