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May 22, 2009 - 4:40am
Both of these stories make sense on their own terms. But taken together, they neatly capture the basic dilemma in my world.
May 21, 2009 - 9:16pm
Recently, our college president spoke to the faculty. In her speech to us, she said that some economists think that the economy may NEVER recover from the current recession. Scary words, even when heard by an economist. I must admit, however, that I am not so pessimistic about our current recession. I look at our current recession, and although I am certainly not a macroeconomist, I recognize in it the “Paradox of Thrift”. This idea says that when people increase their saving, this, while good for individuals, it is bad for the economy.
May 20, 2009 - 8:57pm
I love Suze Orman; I can’t help it. Like her counterpart, Doctor Ruth, Orman speaks frankly about a charged topic and is a mesmerizing speaker. And so I happily devoured Susan Dominus’s intriguing profile of Orman in this week’s NYT magazine (“the money issue”).
May 20, 2009 - 8:48pm
Twice in the last month, I've been in meetings at which somebody suggested that the solution to some ongoing dilemma was to use “the platinum rule.” As it was explained to me, the platinum rule is understood in contrast to the golden rule. The golden rule is to do unto others as you'd have them do unto you; the platinum rule is to do unto others as they'd want done unto them. In other words, reject reciprocity as an ideal, in favor of something like empathy.
May 20, 2009 - 9:40am
When my older daughter started elementary school, I asked about helping out occasionally in her classroom and I was politely, but flatly, refused. The Kindergarten teachers were wary of parents in their classroom, and, I think, did not want an at-home parent of a first-born (even though I have a Ph.D. and experience teaching at the college level – sheesh!). While a bit disappointed, I thought about what it would be like to have had volunteers “helping” in the courses I taught in the past.
May 20, 2009 - 4:39am
In response to yesterday's post, several commenters asked variations on "well, okay, but what if the dean is a jackass? What then?" It's a fair question.
May 20, 2009 - 2:01am
It’s easy to feel an exhilaration verging on hysteria at the start of a big research project; you don’t even know the scope of what you don’t know. As time passes, sources prove to be like mice: If you find one, you can bet there’s a mischief of others hiding on the shelves. Who knows what’s waiting to come to light?
May 19, 2009 - 8:34pm
To attend a commencement last weekend, I had to travel overnight. Two related observations stick in my mind, although I haven't entirely figured out how to address the information they offer.
May 18, 2009 - 9:43pm
If you haven't yet seen Tenured Radical's wonderful post on how to think like an administrator, check it out. Most of it seems like common sense, but for some reason, it isn't. (I'm especially taken with her friend's memoir, entitled I Am Outraged That!. It's probably possible to come up with a less productive posture than moral indignation, but it would take work.)
May 18, 2009 - 9:38pm
  Last year at this time I was beginning to see the end of my sabbatical. My colleagues had wrapped up their courses, turned in their grades, and had started to join me in my unstructured life of research, writing, summer vacation planning, and the like.

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