13 May 2007

this is sort of funny. but really just frightening.

i mean, can condi be serious? i submit this quote indicates all that is wrong with the bush admin:

Rice says President Bush's "unshakable belief in freedom" has rubbed off on her: "It's not hopefulness," she says. "It's a sense of what is possible, and optimism about the strength of democratic institutions." (from the most recent Atlantic).

!!!!! it's not hopefulness? it must be just plain old idiocy. and look at the "possibilities" that those "democratic" "institutions" are bringing to iraq and afghanistan. i guess they certainly can't be described as hopeful situations. at least the article is called grand disillusions.

after these last seven years, i think i'm ready to declare burke my favorite political philosopher. sheesh.

11 May 2007

(not that great) political theory humor

Courtesy of McSweeney's.

And B and I leave for Iran in a few days. For those interested, I may relate tales on a blog I created for the purpose. Or I won't.

08 May 2007

Good newses

Trying to walk that fine line of sharing good news while remaining humble. I'm sharing because you all are really the only ones who appreciate this stuff, as my family doesn't really understand all the crap that went into this. Anyway, here it is:

In the last two of months I've been awarded grants from IREX, MacMillan/YCIAS, Fulbright-Hays, and now the NSF. Not sure what happened between this year and last year, when I was turned down by most of these. I'm guessing my BSing skills improved significantly. All of a sudden I'm faced with the possibility that not only will there be a dissertation, it just might be the dissertation I want.

Of course, there are two drawbacks that come with this news. The first is that I will be spending 6 months next year in Belarus and hopefully Ukraine. Unfortunate because Minsk isn't exactly Paris... The second potential drawback is the fact that this makes it almost certain that I'll take a 7th year, as I'll be returning from the field right when I'd be going on the job market for 2009. Not gonna happen. Now, I can take the raised eyebrows and the whispers of the underclasses ("yeah, I hear he's been here since the Cold War..."), but what really kills me is that my Yale '0? coffee mug from R&W won't even be valid. Has anyone seen whether the '1? mugs are out yet?


06 May 2007

goodnight saigon


was out of town last week, so am late responding to amelia. the best war song i know of -- in american pop anyhow -- is billy joel's goodnight saigon. here are the lyrics, but is also incredibly well produced if you've never listened to it.

Goodnight Saigon
The Nylon Curtain Released: 1982

We met as soul mates
On Parris Island
We left as inmates
From an asylum
And we were sharp
As sharp as knives
And we were so gung ho
To lay down our lives

We came in spastic
Like tameless horses
We left in plastic
As numbered corpses
And we learned fast
To travel light
Our arms were heavy
But our bellies were tight

We had no home front
We had no soft soap
They sent us Playboy
They gave us Bob Hope
We dug in deep
And shot on sight
And prayed to Jesus Christ
With all of our might

We had no cameras
To shoot the landscape
We passed the hash pipe
And played our Doors tapes
And it was dark
So dark at night
And we held on to each other
Like brother to brother
We promised our mothers we'd write
And we would all go down together
We said we'd all go down together
Yes we would all go down together

Remember Charlie
Remember Baker
They left their childhood
On every acre
And who was wrong?
And who was right?
It didn't matter in the thick of the fight

We held the day
In the palm
Of our hand
They ruled the night
And the night
Seemed to last as long as six weeks
On Parris Island

We held the coastline
They held the highlands
And they were sharp
As sharp as knives
They heard the hum of our motors
They counted the rotors
And waited for us to arrive
And we would all go down together
We said we'd all go down together
Yes we would all go down together

01 May 2007


i thought of our department's couch when i saw it...

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