Gerry Canavan

the smartest kid on earth


with 6 comments

* The University of Wisconsin at Madison has just received a $20 million grant for humanities development from the Mellon Foundation and the state government. Just to put this in perspective, that’s almost enough money to hire 80 assistant football coaches.

* Luck and the Ph.D.

Many of those who embark on a PhD are the smartest in their class and will have been the best at everything they have done. They will have amassed awards and prizes. As this year’s new crop of graduate students bounce into their research, few will be willing to accept that the system they are entering could be designed for the benefit of others, that even hard work and brilliance may well not be enough to succeed, and that they would be better off doing something else.

“When it’s all going to be said and done, Harry Reid has eaten our lunch.” Hard to disagree with this assessment.

The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) has projected that the United States will lead the world into catastrophic global warming over the next twenty five years. Obama’s EPA is doing what it can, but without carbon pricing there’s really not much hope.

* At least the U.S. government finally managed to cook up a map that can Americans feel good about their carbon use.

* The data shows the Supreme Court has been successfully captured by corporations. Via LGM.

* The obvious trouble with this “plan to restore airport sanity” is that it’s a call for racial and ethnic profiling. I’m as frustrated with security theater as anyone, but this isn’t a solution—it just shifts the costs.

*  And Banksy swears Exit Through the Gift Shop was real. He swears, y’all.

6 Responses

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  1. there are some things israel does with airport security that at least make sense (besides profiling):


    December 22, 2010 at 11:35 am

  2. Fortunately for Humanities, the athletic department realized they already have 80 assistant football coaches, so in the spirit of the season they decided to let Humanities just keep the money.


    December 22, 2010 at 11:55 am

  3. If you ever listened to right-wing talk radio, you’d know that the plan to restore airport sanity/racial profiling originated with the wing-nuts.


    December 22, 2010 at 12:50 pm

    • Oh, I have no doubt.

      (Do you actually listen to right-wing talk radio? How terrible.)


      December 22, 2010 at 12:50 pm

  4. Not all PhD candidates are good teachers. Sometimes colleges and universities actually want good teachers to guide their students.

    PhD Candidate

    December 22, 2010 at 5:57 pm

  5. If Exit is a hoax, it’s a ridiculously elaborate one, at least a decade in the making, for pretty neglibile payoff. Having seen the film, I’m inclined to believe Banksy.


    December 25, 2010 at 10:56 am

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