March 12-25, 2004
Vol. 34, Issue 5
Back Issues
Barcelona: A laboratory for learning
Lindners create endowment for art history program
Kaleidoscope opens with community celebration
Headlines @ U.Va.
Free clinic grows beyond founders’ vision
Simulators to replace use of dogs
Cooking up a winner
Robert Marquez: Engineering environmental solutions with low-tech designs
Engineers Without Borders — U.Va. engineering students share their expertise
U.Va. maps out
Ten-year milestone gives book festival celebratory theme
Storyteller, healer Martin Prechtel to visit U.Va.
Environmental writers Lopez, Philippon to speak
Book art meets ‘Literary Art’
A pillar of Carr’s Hill, housekeeper Barbara Jett retires
Headlines @ U.Va.

Duck! Here comes the mud
Brace yourselves, Americans. Veteran political observers are predicting a long, ugly presidential campaign. They see a closely divided electorate, heavy primary turnouts of virulently anti-Bush Democrats, and, with candidates already taking pugnacious stands, predict an abundance of mudslinging from now to November. “The last election was evenly divided, and this one looks like it’s going to be closely contested,” said U.Va. historian Brian Balogh. “A lot of cultural issues around patriotism and personal background and commitment to the military are coming to the fore. That really makes for nasty politics.”
Tacoma [Wash.] Tribune, March 4

Haiti’s future looking dim
Robert Fatton Jr. has been a busy man the past few weeks. The chairman of the politics department and an expert on his native Haiti, Fatton has been in great demand from media outlets. He also found the time to pen a commentary for The Wall Street Journal, in which he laments the conditions that gave rise to the recent rebellion. The economy, he wrote, “is on the verge of complete collapse.” Politics is perceived as one of the few paths to wealth, he notes, and will likely remain so. “Without a sustained long-term commitment from the international community, the country has little chance to extricate itself from its current predicament,” he wrote.
Wall Street Journal, March 3

Higher ed funding in the spin cycle
Curry School dean David W. Breneman, an expert in higher education finance, has seen it before. Cash-strapped state legislatures trim the budgets of public colleges and universities, knowing full well that they will have to raise tuition to make up for the lost revenue. Then when constituents squawk about the cost of higher education, the lawmakers threaten to impose tuition caps. The scenario is now playing itself out across the country, according to the Chronicle of Higher Education. “It’s a silly game that is utterly predictable,” Breneman told the Chronicle.
Chronicle of Higher Education, March 5

O’Neil: Campus probes chilling free speech
In November, a Drake University student group sponsored an antiwar conference and protest. The conference was hardly groundbreaking stuff; the rally included an act of civil disobedience, as protesters — including several gray-haired grandmas — were arrested by local police in riot gear and cited for trespassing at the local National Guard armory. What alarms many was the fallout: U.S. attorneys filed subpoenas seeking records of the sponsoring student group and its conference, backed by a gag order that forbade the university from discussing the subpoenas with anyone. (The subpoenas were later quashed and the gag order lifted.) Later, at the University of Texas at Austin, a conference about Islam drew inquiries from Army intelligence agents. Taken together, the incidents are “worrisome,” said law professor Robert M. O’Neil, director of U.Va.’s Thomas Jefferson Center for the Protection of Free Expression. “The focus on who had attended a conference and what was being discussed, without any clear or obvious reason — you have a climate that’s clearly a cause for anxiety,” he said. “We haven’t seen anything like this in 35 or possibly 40 years.”
Chronicle of Higher Education, March 5


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