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Mar 31, 2005 12:09 pm

More Noted Things ...

Today is election day in Zimbabwe. It doesn't promise much in the way of change. The Organization of American Historians convention opens this evening in San Jose, California. Now that I think about it, the same might be said for it.

Glenn Reynolds's"Will the GOP Need Life Support?" Salon, 31 March, is worth a close reading."Big government conservatism," if there ever is such a thing, may finally have over-reached itself. But, speaking of federalism, eb at delayed reaction has a question.

My friend, David Beito, over at Liberty & Power has been calling for"Building a Left/Right Coalition for Academic Freedom." I'm inclined to agree with him about the need for it and we'll probably have more to say about that. But Left/Right Coalitions are strange animals sometimes. Mark Kleiman says"I see Nat Hentoff and Jesse Jackson have joined the feed-Terri forces, which already included Ralph Nader, Randall Terry, Rush Limbaugh, Bo Gritz, Sean Hannity, and James Dobson. Now if we can just get Alexander Cockburn and Al Sharpton to join in, we'll have a left-right coalition embodying the very cream of the nation's loudmouth dimwitted self-promoting busybodies." Kevin Drum adds:"Don't forget Tom DeLay, Mark! He's a charter member." I think I'm not quite ready to coalesce with Tom DeLay, Ralph Nader and Rush Limbaugh.

When Gil Troy of McGill University interviewed himself about his new book on Ronald Reagan over on HNN's mainpage, Cliopatria's Greg Robinson answered him over here. Now, Troy replies to Robinson and Robinson replies to Troy in comments here.

If you love a great story of historical detective work, read John Johnson's"Ptolemy Tilted Off His Axis," LA Times, 30 March. Move over Ptolemy, Hipparchus is in the house. Thanks to Steve Goddard's History Wire for the tip.

Finally, Natalie Bennett and D. B. Light recommend this Exhibit of Rare Scientific Books in the University College of London's Special Collections. Plenty of comets, slugs, and volcanoes, but also 16th century facial reconstruction and military surgery.

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Ralph E. Luker - 3/31/2005

Well, _of course_, there are all those _good_ things to be said about it. I'd be in San Francisco today if they hadn't moved the convention to San Jose. We've talked about that before. San Jose doesn't call for a return visit. San Francisco does.

Oscar Chamberlain - 3/31/2005

That seems very legitimate.

I have only been to two conventions, and at the second, last year, I made the contact that led to a book contract. The latter gives the OAH a sort of a genial glow in my heart.

Ralph E. Luker - 3/31/2005

Oscar, I've belonged to the OAH for over 30 years. As such, I'm in a special category of members who get invited to a special reception at its conventions. It's a big professional organization that isn't very sensitive to its own bloopers -- was Bellesiles's original article _ever_ repudiated or the top prize for it _ever_ revoked? Ah, the answer to both of those questions would be "No." The OAH doesn't seem to be about to amend its ways. It isn't very welcoming of libertarian or conservative historians. I will continue to pay my dues and continue to feel free to criticize the mammoth.

David Timothy Beito - 3/31/2005

If Reynolds's enthusiastic support for the war in Iraq doesn't represent an example of the "over-reach" of big-government conservatism, what does?

Oscar Chamberlain - 3/31/2005


What do you have against the OAH? I made it to the one in Boston last year, and had a rather good and interesting time there.

chris l pettit - 3/31/2005,12271,1448658,00.html

I was wondering what you guys thought of it. I guess the Reaganites would support it, since their boy was the guy overthrown in favor of a chance at real democracy. Curious to see if KC will defend or oppose this ban.


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