I’m entirely jealous of the people of Minnesota on a daily basis. I have friended/liked Al Franken’s Facebook page, and so Franken sends me posts about his work several times a day. Jealous, jealous, jealous. He does so much good, progressive work, and he’s damned hard-nosed about it.

Vitter sends me regular emails too, because I signed up for his newsletter for some stupid reason. They are nothing but

Read More →

The “problem” is that Tea Party activists move from legitimate feelings and normal longings to paranoid political positions that are dangerous and cruel. But because these positions serve an important psychological function, because they resolve an emotional dilemma, they can’t be changed by rational argument.

– Michael Bader, clinical psychologist
Alternet, Why we need to have empathy for Tea Party lunatics

Read More →

It is arguable that, because of his inexperience, Obama is not ready for the presidency. It is arguable that McCain, because of his boiling moralism and bottomless reservoir of certitudes, is not suited to the presidency. Unreadiness can be corrected, although perhaps at great cost, by experience. Can a dismaying temperament be fixed?

From George F. Will, Washington Post

(No kidding)

Read More →

I generally recommend that professors NOT respond to student emails as soon as the messages arrive, even if it will take less than two minutes to respond, because it leads undergraduates to expect immediate feedback. If you routinely reply to student queries within minutes, later in the semester, when you don’t answer the 11pm cry for help the night before the exam, your students will become disgruntled at your “lack of responsiveness.” Don’t train them to expect service 24/7.

– Academic Coach

Read More →

The word ‘democratic’ has such positive emotional valence … so they politicize it to use it as a term to describe a group of political rivals.”
“Democrat Party” is not common usage in Texas, Hart said, noting that the only people he had heard use it were “sitting Republican legislators.”

– Dr. Rod Hart, Communication Studies Professor and Dean, University of Texas, Austin,
in an LA Times article on Bush’s gaffe in the State of the Union

Read More →