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April 01, 2005

Even MoJo misses the point. Everyone misses the point. The most serious problem isn't that the government produces propaganda pieces. It's the MSM's choice to run these pieces without identifying them as such.

I've been watching the turmoil in academia for a while now so I knew the graduate student union idea was out there. It will be interesting to see how this develops. Another discussion here.

And while "zero-tolerance" sounds like a good idea, no policy that's implemented without the application of common sense is a good one.

A list of headlines:

U.S. Soldier Convicted of Killing Iraqi Walks Free

U.S. Intelligence 'Dead Wrong' on Iraq-Report

U.S. Soldiers Arrested for Colombian Cocaine Plot

U.S. Forces Hold Suspected U.S. Insurgent in Iraq

Uncle Sam doesn't look like one of the good guys today, does he?

Also, U.S Government-created "independent" research group under contract to Pentagon says post-war planning failures are the Pentagon's. I don't know that I agree with that. If the president decides to go to war, surely he and his staff have some kind of responsibility to outline and personally approve any post-war "reconstruction" efforts? I have issues with the military being the catch-all for all of our foreign affairs, okay? They're the soldiers. They shoot people and drop bombs. I think nation-building should be handled by someone else. That sounds bad, but I can't think of a different wording. What I mean is that we're asking far too much of the military. They have too many missions, too many of which are mutually incompatible.

The last time I sneezed, analysts were watching breathlessly to see if oil was going to hit a record-setting $50/barrel. Today, a breath later, news of oil topping $56/barrel doesn't even rate major headlines.

What about if it hits $105/barrel? (Via Andrew Tobias.)

(Via the same column, remember we're boycotting Nevis now.)

Has the USofA crossed the Rubicon in foreign policy?

Okay, moving on, much about this American Prospect article on aid for college students strikes me as dishonest. The article mixes "scholarship" money with tuition aid, but these aren't even remotely the same thing. Scholarship money is awarded to, well, scholars. People who excel academically.

For those who need tuition assistance, there's a different pile o'money. Admittedly that pile has shrunk, partly thanks to the Bush Administration who would prefer the non-wealthy skipped college and got right to serving burgers, but to say that "scholarships" shouldn't be given to the best "scholars" is just ridiculous.

There's also a level of condescension in "kids from wealthier families who don't need scholarship aid but score well in standardized tests" that I find amazingly offensive. What are we saying, here? That poor children who get good grades are worthy of all support but that having money in the family turns a child from a scholar to a selfish free-loader?

Also, I doubt that colleges are able to "transfer" money to "academic superstars" since grant/aid money and scholarship money are usually regulated by different sets of standards, but if they are, can we please not diss universities for wanting to offer higher education opportunities to those who have worked for the opportunity, regardless of family finances?

Do we need to make it financially feasible for qualified applicants to attend college, regardless of family financial situation? Yes.

Is there any point in slapping around the children of the families most likely to donate alumni funds and/or help fund endowments and financial aid funds? No.

There are days...not many, but there are days when I almost suspect that the accusations of the Left's contempt for money are quite true.

Sheesh. I don't often disagree with TAP, but this article really offended me.

(Disclosure: I was not awarded any scholarship during my university years.)

To counteract that, the criminal cheeseburger affair! (WMA sound file available.)

I'm afraid I don't have anything funny to post to celebrate the April 1 Foolery. I tend to be foolish at random intervals throughout the year. Mostly, after the week I've had, I'm just looking forward to going home and cleaning out a closet. Whenver my work life gets out of control, I organize something at home to within an inch of its life, and vice-versa.

Posted by AnneZook at 03:15 PM