Monthly Archives: October 2016
The trending case of a Suffolk University student accused of cheating in front of her class raises more questions than her manipulative story answers…
On Thursday, a Suffolk University student named Tiffany Martínez posted a blog in which she described how her professor had attacked her in front of a class for using language that was “not her own.”
This morning, my professor handed me back a paper (a literature review) in front of my entire class and exclaimed “this is not your language.” On the top of the page they wrote in blue ink: “Please go back and indicate where you cut and paste.” The period was included. They assumed that the work I turned in was not my own. My professor did not ask me if it was my language, instead they immediately blamed me in front of peers. On the second page the professor circled the word “hence” and wrote in between the typed lines “This is not your word.” The word “not” was underlined. Twice. My professor assumed someone like me would never use language like that. As I stood in the front of the class while a professor challenged my intelligence I could just imagine them reading my paper in their home thinking could someone like her write something like this?
Martínez is right to be sensitive to the issues of bias she points out. Read more
I asked Michael Hancock a straight question and got a dishonest answer. Then there’s his kneepads and chapstick service for the frackers…
I recently sent an inquiry to the office of Denver mayor Mike Hancock asking about his position about the city’s recent crackdown on dogs being allowed in tasting rooms. We mile-highers love taking the pups to our favorite microbreweries, but earlier this year the authorities started showing up and telling management that this was illegal.
Because – check this – beer is food. Read more
Partisan discourse can’t sink much lower. Now is the time to resurrect a format that was made for political debates.
The third and final “debate” between presidential contenders Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump is now mercifully in the rearview mirror, but like a direct hit from an aggrieved skunk, it might take weeks for the stink to fully die down. This trifecta of vitriolic spew has held a mirror up before the face of the American system of political discourse, and what we’re seeing is utterly wretched.
And for what? What have we learned? Did the debates make us smarter? Did it leave us more capable of rendering an informed decision? Did it shed light on the election and the best interests of the Republic?
The sad truth is that the truth is pretty sad. These charades, these lowest common denominator spectacles, these premeditated travesties of dishonesty and rhetorical misdirection, we call them debates but they are no such thing. A real debate between candidates would be a wonderful thing, though. Read more
With each passing year, the R&RHoF further distances itself from any pretense at credibility. Artists who haven’t gotten the call should be proud.
It’s that time of year again, when the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame (aka, the Mistake by the Lake, part 2) reminds us of the depth of their corruption and irrelevance.
That’s right – the annual list of nominees is out. Let’s have a look, shall we?
Category 1: Wait – you mean these people aren’t in already?
- ELECTRIC LIGHT ORCHESTRA (ELO) – Should have happened years ago.
- JOAN BAEZ – Hugely important for that branch of the R&R tree.
- MC5 – I can’t believe the committee is even acknowledging the existence of a band with such utter lack of commercial appeal.
- PEARL JAM – I’m not a big fan, but absolutely worthy.
- THE CARS – I’d have bet the farm they were already members in good standing. How in the hell have they not made it in by 2016?
- THE ZOMBIES – Again, I’m stunned they’re just now being put forward.
- YES – Fucking Yes isn’t in yet? Oh well, at least Rock pioneers like Madonna have been duly enshrined.
Category 2: Really? Okay, I guess.
Esmé Wonders How She’ll Die
– for Lisa
…perspective is a lie. If I know a pond is round then why should I draw it oval? I will draw it round because round is true. Why should my brush lie to you just because my eyes lie to me? – Terry Pratchett
I shot the boy
whose piano chanted
in the monastery of rain. Read more
Dylan is one of the greatest artists of his time. But his genius wasn’t about Literature.
Part 1 of a series.
The Nobel Committee today awarded American folk icon Bob Dylan its annual prize for Literature. Not surprisingly, reactions have been mixed.
I’m a bit torn myself. There is no questioning at all the immensity of Dylan’s artistic accomplishments, and there’s perhaps even less argument to be had over the influence he has wielded not only over popular music, but over the larger culture. It is simply impossible to imagine what the US would look like today had he never been born, but we can start by considering his role in the anti-war movement of the ’60s. In truth, you could look at his centrality to the revolts that eventually led to the end of that war and make a case that he deserved the Peace Prize.
And what about the who’s who of musical artists who followed in his steps? A very small catalog of those who owe their souls to Dylan would include these names, and if there’s nobody on here that you love and admire you just don’t like music. Read more
I’m not asking who you’re voting for. I’m asking what kind of human being you are.
I’m sure you’ve read what Donald Trump said by now, but let’s watch the video and read the transcript just to make sure we’re all on the same page.
I was considering titling this essay “Donald Trump is a referendum on our character.” But it isn’t “our.” A significant majority of Americans hate Trump, including millions who are going to vote for him anyway.
So today I want to talk about you. You’re not at all comfortable with Donald Trump. Read more
Yabba dabbo do, bitches. It’s beer:thirty.
It’s World Teachers Day. And I’m a little distressed by how little mention I have seen of it flying around on my Facebook feed. But then, what do I expect?
Once upon a time we celebrated teachers for their wisdom and commitment to making their communities better places. Now, in addition, we celebrate them for their superhuman perseverance in the face of utterly overwhelming odds. Some of the stories I’ve heard from teachers border on the harrowing. And I’m just talking about what they’re expected to do in the classroom. Never mind what those who work in de facto war zones face.
It is hard to be truly dedicated to something that your society is at best indifferent, and at worst is actively hostile toward. Read more
The once and future first daughter’s bout of reefer madness notwithstanding, please remember: “anecdotal evidence” is another way of saying “no evidence”…
Chelsea Clinton, who has been out on the stump a bit lately “helping” her mother’s campaign, recently dove face first into the muck by saying that pot can be fatal.
“…we also have anecdotal evidence now from Colorado where some of the people who were taking marijuana for those purposes, the coroner believes, after they died, there was drug interactions with other things they were taking.”