Gerry Canavan

the smartest kid on earth

Thursday! Wisconsin, Optical Illusions, the Death of the Public University, and More

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* Some genuinely breaking news: Wisconsin’s anti-union bill was just struck down for violating the state’s open meetings law.

* …the curious thing about this report is that it dances around policy questions, but doesn’t ask a single one directly, or name a single policy that has shaped the higher education landscape.  “The public” is asked to confine its thoughts to individual success; “college presidents” are asked to ruminate on the mission of college.  But the two are never articulated as part of the same system, or as having a mutual set of interests that are social and organically intertwined.  And this, I would argue, is because neoliberal government policies, and right-wing political demagoguery, have sold the ideology of “low taxes” and “small government” so successfully that the moral commitment of the state to nurture an educated citizenry has entirely evaporated from the equation.

Ohio hates John Kasich. But GOP voters love Herman Cain; he’s outpolling Pawlenty now, and nearly tied with Gingrich and Ron Paul.

* Steve Benen notes that Jon Huntsman is so liberal he could probably be a credible candidate in the Democratic primary in 2016. As I noted on Twitter the sad thing is that’s really as strong an argument against Democrats as it is for Huntsman.

* And just a little bit of awesome: your optical illusions of the year.

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