Monthly Archives: September 2005

How Many Bad Apples Before You Blame the Farmer?

Human Rights Watch has a new report on the widespread torturing of Iraqi detainees by US forces from 2003-2004. I’ll be curious to hear the explanations, excuses, alibis from defenders of the war. Probably quite a few will try to … Continue reading

Posted in Politics | 28 Comments

Caiman on the Crum

Well, that was a different sort of story to read in the local newspaper. A four-and-a-half foot caiman was found by the cops in the little creek that runs below the college, about a half-mile south of the college. They … Continue reading

Posted in Miscellany | 2 Comments

Choose Your Own Adventure

When you read a number of blogs, you get to a point where you know very well which articles in the mainstream media, especially the New York Times, are going to spawn a frenzied discussion. Then it’s primarily a question … Continue reading

Posted in Academia, Politics | 15 Comments

High Camp

So we were thinking a bit of going camping this weekend. I used to backpack in the Sierras with my family when I was a kid, haven’t really done anything like it as an adult, just a lot of day … Continue reading

Posted in Miscellany | 8 Comments

You Can’t Shoot Someone Online

…but boy, do I understand why someone in a 19th Century Wild West saloon might have reached for the hidden gun in their boots to blow someone away after a hand of [online] poker. I say this after having gone … Continue reading

Posted in Miscellany | 8 Comments

As Long As I’m At It…

Ok, so I’ve suggested to the American Historical Association (AHA) that they should eliminate formal paper sessions with extreme prejudice. That goes for all big professional meetings (MLA, AAA, what have you): no more formal paper sessions in which participants … Continue reading

Posted in Academia | 31 Comments

On Dreams

This morning my 4-year old daughter Emma reported that she had a nightmare last night. We’ve talked a bit about nightmares, I’ve told her how I used to have really bad ones at her age. She asked me what dreams … Continue reading

Posted in Miscellany | 3 Comments

He Got An-hillee-eight-ed

Unfogged makes fun of Matt Yglesias’ spelling. I used to have the opposite problem as a teenager: I read constantly but I had no idea how most of the words I was reading were actually pronounced, since they weren’t often … Continue reading

Posted in Miscellany | 10 Comments


Some things that are on my geeky mind: 1) Avatar is just damned amazingly good. Kid-equipped people should be making it preferential viewing. Non-kid people should also consider watching. The episode that really convinced me it was the kind of … Continue reading

Posted in Popular Culture | 9 Comments

The Comfort of Being Irrelevant

I had a chance to listen last night to an extremely interesting talk by Brendan O’Leary, who has been part of a consulting team (that included Karol Soltan) advising authorities in Kurdistan about the constitutional negotiations in Iraq. O’Leary is … Continue reading

Posted in Politics | 5 Comments