Monthly Archives: December 2006

Rothenburg ob der Tauber

We had a wonderful pre-Christmas trip to the little Bavarian city of Rothenburg ob der Tauber. It is an old Free Imperial City of the Holy Roman Empire, a municipal republic like those of medieval Italy, very well preserved within … Continue reading

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to Germany for a week

We are leaving today for a family vacation in Germany. I won’t post again until shortly after Christmas. We’re going to Rothenburg ob der Tauber, a little medieval town in northern Bavaria. It’s one of many German towns that have … Continue reading

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why Obama has lit a fire

There is a remarkable gap between Senator Obama’s actual speech in New Hampshire last weekend (click for video) and the endless coverage and commentary that I have read about it. Reporters and bloggers uniformly take the line that Obama presented … Continue reading

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a model of anti-Black racism in the USA

This is a very sketchy model, based on nothing more than personal observations and reflections. The arrows are supposed to be causal, although I can’t estimate the strength of these relationships. Thus, for example, the human instinct to distinguish in-groups … Continue reading

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support for abortion rights: a generational story

For a talk this afternoon, I quickly looked at attitudes toward abortion rights by age cohort. I think the story is interesting. In brief, each generation came of age with more favorable attitudes toward abortion than the cohorts that preceded … Continue reading

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a healthy debate about civic renewal

I believe that current forms of politics are, in general, too manipulative. Americans recognize that they are being focus-grouped, polled, canvassed, frightened, divided, titillated, and provoked; and they don’t like it. They want opportunities to share ideas and develop solutions. … Continue reading

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new work from AmericaSpeaks

I’m especially proud to be a member of the board of AmericaSpeaks at this moment, when the organization has completed two remarkable projects. In Northeast Ohio, deep in the Rust Belt, there is an urgent need for vision, coordination, and … Continue reading

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Emilio Estevez’ Bobby

I was very moved and impressed by the movie Bobby, which we saw last night. It is not really about Senator Robert F. Kennedy. The director, Emilio Estevez, tries to depict the American people at a particular historical and political … Continue reading

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an embassy from Hugo Ch?vez

I took these notes while listening to Bernardo Alvarez Herrera, Venezuela’s Ambassador to the United States. He was speaking at the University of Maryland, as part of my Institute’s effort to develop a project that would address Venezuela’s deep internal … Continue reading

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universities, civic engagement, and the global market

If I were asked why most universities do not put a lot of effort into civic education or civic work in their own communities, I would say that it’s because they compete for students. Prospective students and their parents want … Continue reading

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