Free Dartmouth
8/30/2003 06:19:00 PM | Kumar

A Break From the HorseRace: of politics can be found at this blog called "2 Blowhards," where two very intellegent middle aged urban guys delve into the social inishgts/commentary they assess as they proceed with their lives. [LINK]

8/30/2003 03:00:00 PM | Kumar

Why DO Smart Executives Fail? It seems a lot of people want to know. I was on Amazon and I noticed that Dartmouth Business Professor Sydney Fincklestein's new Book "Why Smart Executives Fail" is #44 on the Amazon best-seller charts. [LINK] Alright, back to work.

8/30/2003 02:54:00 PM | Kumar

Dean on Cuba/Trade/Campaign Finance: A new WaPo story highlights certain policy changes in the Dean campaign. Dean is re-considering his initial support of walking down the path of normalization with Cuba, of raising the retirement age to 70, of keeping his campaign within the caps of matching funds. So Dartmouth Deanics, do these policy changes make you like him more or less? [LINK]

8/30/2003 02:48:00 PM | Kumar

DOC Trip Leader Shortage: Apparantly, there is a sizable deficiency of trip leaders (about 26 I have heard) for the outdoor trips being led for the incoming 07s. A number of people who had signed up to lead have dropped out. If you interested, contact the DOC and help them out.

8/30/2003 02:46:00 PM | Kumar

Environment or Housing? According to NPR program, NH's housing market is skyrocketting with house prices rising to a level that many families are being priced out of home ownership with rents going up as well. This lack of affrodable housing is really hitting NH's less well off. The reason for the lack of new construction is that many communities are trying to curb sprawl and the environmental damage from more building. Both are liberal urges: to help the less well off in housing, and to protect the environment. Which side do you come down on? To build or not to build?

8/30/2003 02:45:00 PM | Greg Klein

More Recall Fun!: Craig Kilborn of CBS's "The Late Late Show" has an interesting op-ed piece in the NYT today. You can find it here. FCC rules say that his show, or any other "entertainment" show can't mention or show pictures of any of the 135 gubernatorial candidates unless they're going to give equal time to them all. So no Awwhnold jokes, no Gary Coleman -- not even the Smut Peddler who cares can be part of any staged gags. Kilborn makes some interesting points in terms of what cable and "news" shows can get away with and that he can't. I kind of hope he comes up with a gag that shows all 135. This is better than Cirque de Soleil.

8/29/2003 04:54:00 PM | Kumar

Keeping Resumes "on File": In many years of applying for internships and jobs, I have never been contacted at a later date by an employer that told me that though opportunities were then full, they were going to put my resume 'on file.' Is this just a verbal nicety? Do employers actually have a file of potential resumes that they look to when things open up? Anybody know the answer? (I know my life is a rather small sample size)

8/29/2003 03:18:00 PM | Kumar

Sunday Deadline: Calpundit reports that this Sunday is the deadline to sign up for the Do-Not-Call-Registry that prohibits telemarketing calls. If you don't sign up by this Sunday, you will have to wait a year till you can add yourself to the list. To register, either call 888-382-1222 or surf over to

8/29/2003 10:22:00 AM | Kumar

What Would have been your First Election? Matt Yglesias has come out in favor of removing all age requirements to voting. His argument: in our apathetic society, the 14 years olds that would be go vote would be a very well-informed and dorky minority. [LINK] So, what is the first election would you have wanted to vote in? (For me, it would been '92)

8/29/2003 10:19:00 AM | Timothy

What about the 40% of America who thinks Iraqis were involved in 9-11?
A dartlogger says he is told (we don't know by whom):
In a recent Gallup poll, Americans were asked the following question: "If two equally qualified students, one white and one black, applied to a major U.S. college or university, who do you think would have the better chance of being accepted to the college?" 67% of blacks said the WHITE student would have the advantage, while only 5% (FIVE PERCENT) said the black student would have the advantage. The distribution is a little closer to reality among white respondents, but even there, only 34% said the black student would have an advantage. This kind of thing makes me almost question democracy -- if the public is this stupid, can it really be trusted?
Who is "the public" that is untrustworthy? Well, whites are said to be much more closer to reality than blacks. So let's substitute "blacks" for "the public" in this quoted passage on dartlog:
The distribution is a little closer to reality among white respondents, but even there, only 34% said the black student would have an advantage. This kind of thing makes me almost question democracy -- if blacks are this stupid, can they really be trusted?

8/29/2003 12:50:00 AM | Kumar

The Dean Train Keeps On Rolling: A new poll out in Iowa shows Dean surging in the state and overtaking Gephardt, small gains for the rest of the field, and a drop for Gephardt. A lot of undecideds seems to have gone to Dean in the past 2 months. [LINK] Why is Gephardt taking a hit?

Poll Taken August 25th (June 2nd numbers in paranthesis) MOE +/- 5

Dean 25 (11)
Gephardt 21 (27)
Kerry 16 (14)
Undecided 15 (29)
Lieberman 12 (10)
Edwards 6 (4)
Clark 3 (-)
Kucinich 1 (1)
Graham 1 (1)
Braun - (2)
Sharpton - (1)

8/29/2003 12:31:00 AM | Kumar

Is the World Turning Upside Down? First, the quasi-conservative Oxblog writes a long peice about how the New York Times is biased against Howard Dean and needs to treat his supporters more seriously. [LINK] Then, I dig up an article in which Dartlog's Andrew Grossman is agreeing with WTO protesters that the WTO and IMF should be gotten rid of. [LINK] What next? FreeDartmouthers and Dartloggers sharing a bed? (Oh wait, I guess that already happened. Oh, those crazy 01s.)

Update: Calpundit defends the NYT article, and disputes the whole notion of hard journalism objectivity. [LINK] The New Republic blog agrees with Oxblog about the Dean bias in the NYT article, making the point that Dean seems the first Dem politician since Clinton to win the heart of the left despite a moderate agenda. [LINK]

8/28/2003 07:34:00 PM | Greg Klein

Taco Bell Recall: So I've been back in the land of Fast Food for one day now and I've already been asked to register my support in the recall circus by voting with my stomach. Check out Taco Bell's latest marketing strategy. Fox is reporting that CA Dems are shouting that the whole thing is rigged because of the varying prices.

Has the GODP (Grand Ol' Democratic Party) gone of the deep end in even commenting on this? What does this say about political influence in the state when Taco Bell is putting out polls? Although, I must admit, it's probably the tastiest poll I've ever been asked to participate in -- but not by much.

8/28/2003 06:17:00 PM | Kumar

Brad in Russia: He will certainly be missed, as I know we will miss us and the blogosphere. Mr. Plumer, for his pleasure and for his thesis assessing the effect of Russian authors on Southern writers, will be in Russia for the next two weeks. Wish him luck, and we should all hope they don't mistake him for a Chechen.

8/28/2003 05:14:00 PM | Timothy

Hitchens on the Ten Commandments
No pulling punches here.

8/28/2003 02:57:00 PM | Timothy

Fun Stuff
Arnold. Freepers respond. More on how Cruz might not be that far ahead. You know, a Democratic candidate would attacked endlessly if this past history came out about him.

8/28/2003 01:48:00 PM | Kumar

Could Hillary Run in 2004? This columnist talks as if he knows more than the rest of us. [LINK]

Update: Another story for those of us who miss stories and read them a month later. speculates about Perot in 2004. [LINK] Also, Bush's inner GOP circle thinks (article is 11 days old) that Gephardt will ultimately win the nomination by using labor to win Iowa and build momentum. [LINK]

Update #2: It seems that Hillary really might run. Kos says he has inside sources that Hillary's fundraising team really wants her to do it. [LINK] I don't know what to think. Does she energize the base? Does the energize the Republicans? Is Monica still too fresh in people's minds? Would she be a good VP pick? What do you think, Deaniacs?

8/28/2003 12:40:00 AM | Kumar

Less Democratic Journalists? Despite Grossman having probably read this already, I'll meekly venture to link to it anyway. A national poll done this summer of journalists found that "...there were fewer self-proclaimed Democrats among journalists in 2002 (37.1 percent) compared with 10 years ago (44.1). But there wasn't a corresponding increase in Republicans. Ten years ago, 16.3 percent said they were Republicans. In 2002 that number had risen somewhat, to 18.6. In the last survey, a third of all journalists called themselves independent. I wonder why. What is causing a change in the demographic? Thoughts? [LINK]

8/27/2003 03:42:00 PM | Kumar

Thoughts on Clark: It seems most Deanics (including those on this blog) seem to really dislike Kerry. So, Jordan and Co., what about Clark? Washington Monthly has a great article on him. [LINK]

Update: These guys really seem to hate Clark, and if there evidence is correct, the media limelight is going to ruin this man. [LINK] Scott has emailed me to inform me that these guys bashing Clark are a really disreputable. I don't know what the reality is, but their shrill tone certainly seems to suggest a lack of journalistic aspirations.

8/27/2003 02:27:00 PM | Kumar

Very Funny: I guess being a conservative really is a disease. So says a British psych study which "has concluded that conservatism can be explained psychologically as a set of neuroses rooted in "fear and aggression, dogmatism and the intolerance of ambiguity". As if that was not enough to get Republican blood boiling, the report's four authors linked Hitler, Mussolini, Ronald Reagan and the rightwing talkshow host, Rush Limbaugh, arguing they all suffered from the same affliction." [LINK]

Update: Grossman points out correctly that I only quickly glanced at the article, and just assumed it was a crazy British study. Much funnier that it was a US one. If only I could use the search function of Grossman's aggregator, I could have seen this article weeks ago.

8/27/2003 11:14:00 AM | Kumar

Dean's Momentum: Daily Kos thinks that if Dean wins NH, Kerry is done. Janos, what do you think? I was shocked by this new Zogby poll out today showing a 38-17 advantage for Dean over Kerry in NH. [LINK]

Update: Another interesting fact on the Zobgy site. Clark is claiming the White House pressured CNN to fire him. [LINK]

Another Update: I didn't realize this but Draft Clark was able to get its supporters to send 30,000 letters to the General urging him to run. Thats quite a number. If they each gave 50 bucks, thats 1.5 million dollars. [LINK]

8/26/2003 11:11:00 AM | Kumar

I Figured it Out: I always wondered whether Dartloggers really were reading as widely as their posts of obscure mentions of Dartmouth in the media might suggest. In fact, their posts correspond almost exactly with a Google News search on "Dartmouth College." Oh well.

Update: Dartlog has a news aggregator. Its got a pretty font but no search function. Dartloggers use it, and post their results as entries on Dartlog. Makes me feel a lot better now that I know.

8/25/2003 06:06:00 PM | scott anderson

Is Howard Dean a liberal?

My answer and the answer that Dean himself gives to this question is always no. The question then which this post from the Tough Democrat raises is whether or not Dean done enough to separate himself from being labeled as a liberal by the media and the general public. The talk that Dean is to liberal to win a general election strikes me as nonsense. The question is whether his image will be too liberal.

8/25/2003 06:01:00 PM | Brad Plumer

Minimum wage hikes: For anyone who's interested, Nathan Newman has been all over the miminum wage issue lately. Here's his original post that lays out the case for increasing the minimum wage. He argues that over-reliance on the Earned Income Tax Credit to support low-wage workers leads to a distortion of both the labor market and production. Max Sawicky disagrees with Newman's analysis, but in the end he thinks that "the minimum wage ought to be raised and indexed to inflation" and that "refundable tax credits ought to be expanded."

Now Newman's back again, suggesting that any Democratic candidate who advocates an $8/hr minimum wage will reap the benefits at the polls-- not only because an overwhelming majority (around 80%) of Americans support the increase, but also because such a platform would increase turnout among poorer voters. He claims he'll be back soon to argue why this policy will increase employment (and presumably, why it won't affect inflation).

Update: Here's Newman's argument on how raising the minimum wage actually increases employment. I haven't gone through it very carefully, but it seems reasonable to me. The big concern is with point #3-- that a minimum wage hike across the board will preclude the existence of cheap labor alternatives. But this seems to ignore international labor alternatives (cf. the big outsourcing trend lately), as well as illegal immigrant labor. I'm not sure what effect that will have, taken altogether, on employment. Though I do like Newman's closing line: "as long as the evidence [on the effect on the labor market] is ambiguous, I go with raising the minimum wage, since the obvious empirical benefits for the workers effected are clear while the supposed downside is unproven and disputed theoretically."

8/25/2003 05:46:00 PM | Brad Plumer

How to fix California: Kevin Drun links to this LA Times editorial suggesting a number of prudent structural changes to California's government. If you don't live out West, you might not care one way or the other, but I think the editorial offers an interesting perspective on the general needs of any successful democratic system. The editors advise the following:

  • Repealing or loosening term limits. Politicians are more beholden than ever to contributors and see no political gain in trying to solve long-term state problems. Elected representatives no longer fully grasp the basics of budgeting and regulatory oversight.

  • Turning legislative redistricting over to the state Supreme Court or a special commission. Politicians do it now, making safe districts for themselves. Over time, the primary-voting faithful of each party push the seat farther to the left or the right.

  • Amending Proposition 13, not to increase tax rates but to make it harder for corporations to escape reassessment. Homeowners can't disguise a sale as a 100-year lease, so why should banks and insurance companies be able to?

  • Amending the state Constitution to make it harder to place voter initiatives on the ballot and to recall officials. The initiative process has been hijacked by special interests, from casino operators to labor unions. Sponsors today don't bother with volunteers; they "buy" qualifying signatures by deploying an army of paid signature gatherers.

  • Plug the loopholes that encourage corrupt relationships in which politicians shake down contributors and pay them back with favors at the citizenry's expense.

  • Another chronic contributor to the state's political deadlock is the requirement that two-thirds of legislators must pass the annual state budget.... A ballot initiative sponsored by Democrats and already in circulation would lower the threshold for passing a budget or raising taxes to a 55% vote.... Both parties share blame for the state's deep hole of debt, but the measure's sponsors should agree to delay and incorporate it in a broader package that could be put to voters by 2004.
  • None of these proposals sound overly radical to me (although I can't comment on Proposition 13), and while they may not solve the budget crisis right away, they'll almost certainly result in a more efficient and more representative government in Sacramento. Changing the two-thirds requirement might cause concern among those Republicans worried about tax increases, but as Kevin Drum comments, "If Californians really don't like the budgets the Democrats pass, they can vote them out of office. That's democracy."

    8/25/2003 03:57:00 PM | Jonathan

    War on Drugs

    An interesting factoid in this month's Playboy: In Tulia, Texas, where one cop arrested 10 percent of the black population for allegedly dealing - no drugs were ever introduced as evidence - a judge overturned the verdicts, and the cop is being prosecuted for perjury.

    8/25/2003 03:32:00 PM | Brad Plumer

    Dean's conservative appeal? Judging from this Washington Post piece, it looks like Howard Dean prefers the Dennis Kucinich approach to presidential campaigns:

    One multilateral institution that might not fare so well in a Dean administration, though, is the World Trade Organization. In what would be a radical departure, China and other countries could get trade deals with the United States only if they adopted "the same labor laws and labor standards and environmental standards" as the United States. Whether or not that demand was consistent with WTO rules? "That's right." With no concession to their relative level of development? "Why should there be? They have the right to have a middle class same as everyone else."

    Dean says, "We've tried it" -- NAFTA, WTO -- "for 10 years, and has it succeeded? No. . . . What's the purpose of trade? If it's to create jobs, we haven't done that in America."
    One really has to wonder about that UNH econ professor against whom Dean "held his own."

    8/25/2003 03:04:00 PM | Nick

    The Flip Side of Dean

    An interesting story from this weekend. On Thursday, my dad supported Bush 99%. On Friday, he met Howard Dean. On Saturday, he says that he's considering helping out with Dean's campaign.

    So I wonder if Dean has a strong conservative appeal in addition to his liberal side. My dad cites three reasons that make him the most impressive Dem candidate:

    #1) Dean has a conservative streak on a few issues, especially with his plans to maintain defense spending. It's OK if he criticizes the Iraq war, as long as we know he's committed to defense.
    #2) Dean has a firm command of the facts. He could even hold his own in a hardcore discussion of economics with a UNH economics professor.
    #3) If anyone says anything Dean disagrees with, he doesn't hesitate to throw down the glove and challenge it.

    Personally, I don't mind Dean's conservative streak. It gives him the potential to be the "Uniter" that Shrub never was, especially if he's attracting voters from both sides of the fence. Also, #3 fits in with a little theory I have that many Americans are itching for more fire and brimstone in their politics, hence the rise of blowhards like Bill O'Reilly. Howard "I yell all the time" Dean may go far with his mix of a hellion attitude and the facts / intelligence to back it.

    Or maybe I'm just imagining Dean's "conservative appeal." Any dartlog listeners want to weigh in with their thoughts?

    8/25/2003 02:52:00 PM | Kumar

    Not Bad: Arianna Huffington now has a blog. It just started but her blog seems less stale than most political candidate blogs. Might make for some interesting reading in the next few months. [LINK]

    8/25/2003 10:15:00 AM | Jared Alessandroni

    More on Gay School - The continuing saga of how to give more money to the rich kids...See this article on how someone is suing NYC schools for supporting the expansion of the gay segregation school. 3.2 million dollar expansion of a school designed for a segment of the population that traditionally does better than average - and that comes mostly from the same wealthy white place. Any wonder that Bloomberg is supporting this, one of only school expansions approved this year in the city?

    8/25/2003 01:20:00 AM | Greg Klein

    A new presidential politics? The Dean campaign rallied in front 15,000 people in Seattle tonight -- 15 months before the general election and 5 months before the NH primary. If the $9k per hour is raising holds out for the next 48 hours, they'll hit their $1 mil. goal by Tuesday night, as well. Has any presidential campaign ever seen anything like this so early? If Dean's ultimately successful, will future Dems be able to win any other way? If necessary, can the other leading Dem contenders count on Dean's supporters getting in line come the general election without an emphasis on grassroots?

    Also, CNN has an article with Dean commenting on a Wes Clark tap for VP.

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