Cliopatria: A Group Blog
Aaron Bady (∞); Chris Bray (∞); Brett Holman (∞); Jonathan Jarrett (∞); Robert KC Johnson (∞); Rachel Leow (∞); Ralph E. Luker (∞); Scott McLemee (∞); Claire B. Potter (∞); Jonathan T. Reynolds (∞)
Although born in Canada, he moved to the United States and took American citizenship (to work in government employment), made numerous trips to India, where he served first as an economic advisor to the government and later for two plus years as American Ambassador, and then spent a good deal of time in Gstaad. He so defied national loyalties that in the case of talks over a bilateral dispute, both Canada and the United States appointed him as their representative (one wonders whether the softwood controversy, which seems finally to be adjusted, would have had an earlier resolution had Galbraith been handed the dossier).
The range of Galbraith’s interests and abilities was similarly astounding in its breadth and—let us say at once--audacity. In addition to his role as an economist, his profession and the role for which he was best known (if not necessarily most heeded), he was famous as a liberal political theorist and critic, speechwriter and political activist (such as in his opposition to the Vietnam War and to the current conflict in Iraq) and television personality. In addition, Galbraith worked for extended periods as a journalist/editor with FORTUNE magazine (his service later prompted Henry Luce’s wisecrack to President John F, Kennedy that he had taught Ken Gabraith to write and had regretted it ever since). He also spent time as an expert and collector of traditional Indian painting (on which he cowrote a book), wrote THE SCOTCH, his elegiac essay on the Scots of Canada, and published a pair of novels, including the bestseller THE TRIUMPH. Most importantly for historians is Galbraith’s 1955 work THE GRAT CRASH. This history of the 1929 stock market crash retains both its lucidity and currency. It also offers a model of literary fluency, irony and humor that many a historian could do worse than to take as a model.
Miriam Burstein explains that the judges of this year's Pulitzer Prize for Fiction chose the wrong March.
In"Kaavya Viswanathan, Christopher Paolini, and Remixing," Tim Burke reflects on the limits of fair use and expectations of originality. Erin O'Connor and Margaret Soltan are promoting The Morning News'"‘Sloppy Seconds With Opal Mehta' Contest, where you, as ‘writer,' plagiarize as much as you want, for a sort-of original story. Start cribbing now—the entry deadline is in two weeks!"
When President Bush appointed Ben Bernanke to head the Federal Reserve, he passed over Glenn Hubbard, a former economic advisor who is the dean at Columbia University's Business School (CBS). In response, Hubbard expresses himself in song:"Every Breath You Take ... We'll Be Watching You!" Thanks to my virtual son, Michael de la Merced at Outside Report, for the tip. Michael, btw, does financial blogging for DealBook, a financial service of the New York Times.
In exquisite prose, rare among those in the historical profession, Lepore achieves multiple aims in these five pages. First, she weaves a masterful narrative setting Philbrick's current effort against the work of Harvard's fabled historian Samuel Morison. Second, she reminds us why her own scholarly work "crosses over," garnering awards among people in the scholarly profession and among regular folks who read nonfiction books on airplanes. Finally, she teaches. Never speaking down to her audience, she explains by hinting and pointing what historical research is all about, and why, when done carefully and rigorously, is a far cry from journalistic writing. Her piece is short, but full of insight on every page. It will be a standard on my reading lists for undergraduates in years to come.
*I am normally extraordinarily squeamish about the overuse of this verb. In sociology's case, however, it seems to get the job done. Feel free in comments to discuss: Why does sociology suck? When did sociology start sucking? Are there current practitioners of sociology who do not suck? Can sociology be unsucked? Etc.
The fat lady sang yesterday for Harvard undergraduate Kaavya Viswanathan. The author of How Opal Mehta Got Kissed, Got Wild, and Got a Life is accused of having plagiarized from Megan McCafferty's Sloppy Firsts and Second Helpings. We've heard everything from"the plagiarism occurred because of her photographic memory" to"she can't write, so it's the ghostwriter's fault." The Harvard Crimson and the New York Times report that Little Brown and Time Warner Books are withdrawing all editions of Viswanathan's book and that her London book tour is canceled. Let's see: her film contract with Dreamworks is, surely, dead; no certain word on her rumored $500 grand deal for a second book; and Harvard won't tell us about her future standing as a student because of federal law. Thanks to Nick Milne at A Gentle Fuss for the tip.
The New Republic carries two articles of note for Cliopatria's readers:
1) a piece by our colleague, KC Johnson,"Two Faculty Unions and Israel," TNR, 27 April, which is critical of the attitude of the AAUP and CUNY's faculty union toward Israel; and
Ryan Lizza,"George Allen's Race Problem," TNR, 27 April, which traces the neo-confederate history of the Virginia Senator who aspires to be president. Little of this is new to Virginia voters, but it may give the Republicans outside the commonwealth pause about his candidacy.
Both articles, alas, are subscriber only.
Congratulations to Melissa Haley, who won Common-Place's first Uncommon Voices prize for"Storm of Blows," Common-Place, January 2003. Her article about boxing and pugilists in late 19th century America was chosen from those published in Common-Place's first five years for its"striking literary merit."
At Volokh, David Bernstein has several excellent posts on the controversy--which is another reminder of the too-often need for off-campus publicity to be used to uphold free exchange of ideas on campus.
Michael Prodger,"Nine Tumultuous Weeks in Arles," Telegraph, 9 April, reviews Martin Gayford's The Yellow House, which examines the trying months in which Paul Gaugin and Vincent van Gogh lived together in a very small space. Thanks to Arts & Letters Daily for the tip.
Its five volumes weigh 28.5 lbs. and cost $825. Joel Garreau reviews Historical Statistics of the United States, Millennial Edition. So much information; so little time.
Stimulated, perhaps, by the charges in the Duke lacrosse case, there's a lively debate going on among Ginmar's A View from Abroad (21 and 26 April), blac(k)ademic, and Alas, A Blog about whether gender trumps race in terms of oppression. Thanks to Elle, abd for the tip. As she points out, class repeatedly gets short shrift in the race/class/gender trinity.
Finally, congratulations to Manan Ahmed, who organized and presented at a conference,"Sacred Cows & False Prophets: Traversing History and Religion in South Asia" at the University of Chicago on 21 and 22 April. It was in honor of Manan's mentor, Ronald Inden, and brought many of his former students back to the campus for this event. Both Sepoy and pdcs have reports. Congratulations, also, to Nathanael Robinson, who gave his first conference presentation,"A Place in the Republic," at the annual meeting of the Society for French Historical Study at Urbana, Illinois, last weekend. You know their presentations went well, because Manan, pdcs, and Nathanael survived to blog about them.
Richard Reeves,"John Stuart Mill," Prospect, May 2006, is a thoughtful retrospective essay. It makes a number of provocative points and includes Mills' notorious observation that"I never meant to say that the Conservatives are generally stupid. I meant to say that stupid people are generally Conservative." See also: Jason Kuznicki's reflections on Reeves' essay at Positive Liberty.
Jill Lepore,"Plymouth Rocked," New Yorker, 24 April, reviews Nathanael Philbrick, Mayflower: A Story of Courage, Community, and War, though that's not the most important reason to read Lepore's essay; and Edward J. Blum,"Grapes of Wrath," Books and Culture, April/May 2006, reviews Harry Stout's Upon the Altar of the Nation, which is the most important reason to read Blum's essay.
Scott McLemee's"A Day in the Life," Inside Higher Ed, 26 April, recounts his experience of the recent OAH convention and wonders if some young Richard Hofstadter is on his own historical trail.
After over 45 years at Cornell, Walter LaFeber, the Andrew H. and James S. Tisch Distinguished University Professor and Weiss Presidential Teaching Fellow, is retiring. His first book, The New Empire: An Interpretation of American Expansion, 1860-1898 (1963) won the AHA's Albert J. Beveridge Prize. I read his second, America, Russia, and the Cold War (1966), when I was in graduate school. It's now in a 9th revised edition. His Inevitable Revolutions: The United States in Central America (1984, 1992) won the Gustavus Meyers Prize; and The Clash: U.S.-Japanese Relations Throughout History (1997) received both the Bancroft Prize and the OAH's Ellis Hawley Prize. He's had a distinguished teaching career, as well. Excepting Condoleeza Rice, three of the four most recent National Security Advisors were students of Walter LaFeber.* He addressed his former students last night at a sold out event at New York's Beacon Theater on Broadway. Thanks to Eric Alterman for the tip.
*Alterman corrects himself here. That should read:"Excepting Condoleeza Rice, two of the three most recent National Security Advisors were students of Walter LaFeber."
Dan Cohen at George Mason University reports on his recent test of Google Scholar and its competitor, Windows Live Academic. Both academic search engines are still in their Beta phase. Using"frontier thesis" as a test because of its elementary importance in American history, Cohen found that both search engines are still of limited usefulness in the humanities. In fact, Bill Turkel found that Google's main search yields more helpful results for"frontier thesis" than Google Scholar. Within 24 hours of Cohen's posting about the inadequacies of the academic search engines, however, Microsoft was in touch with him about what scholars in the humanities expect from an academic search engine.
Email nominations for recently published posts about history (a historical topic, reviews of books or resources, reflections on teaching or researching history) to jboggs*at*gmu*dot*edu, or use the submission form provided by Blog Carnival.
Unfortunately, as recent rumors surrounding contingency plans for air strikes on Iran demonstrate, the abolition of nuclear weapons -- including our own -- is not near the top of our agenda. And yet the Iran crisis also demonstrates precisely why it should be. So long as the United States is willing to countenance the military use of nuclear weapons (and the funding of research on nuclear bunker-busters at least shows that we do not discountenance such use), so long will other nations continue to possess an incentive for acquiring them. Our strong condemnations of the proliferation of nuclear weapons in states like Iran, coupled with our implicit threats to stop their proliferation, only convinces non-nuclear states to acquire them more quickly than ever as a deterrent to our acting on such threats. As I've argued before,"rational actors will not tolerate monopolies on asymmetrical power," and today the distribution of nuclear power in the world is radically asymmetrical.
Back in the 1980s, opponents of nuclear weapons sometimes referred to themselves as the"new abolitionist movement." There are plenty of ways in which the movement for the abolition of slavery differs from the movement for the abolition of nuclear weapons, and those differences would probably make any systematic historical comparison between the two spurious. (I hope this post won't be taken for such a comparison.) But at least in some respects, the comparison is apt, particularly when one is focusing on what both movements were up against in the battle for popular opinion.
In both cases, the abolitionists had to deal with a large number of people who were sympathetic to their arguments but not to their prescriptions. In the antebellum period, there were numerous critics of slavery who nonetheless argued only that the institution should not be allowed to expand into states where it did not already exist. There were more still who favored the abolition of the slave trade as a natural way to quash slavery itself, gradually and indirectly. Both of these groups saw the abolitionists -- those who called not just for non-expansion or non-trade, but for immediate emancipation -- as ridiculous fanatics who were endangering Southern men and women by fomenting slave insurrection. To take the power of slaveholding out of the Southerners' hands would dangerously place that power in the hands of so-called savages, who would allegedly terrorize and murder the moment the legal power of masters was surrendered.
But the abolitionists understood what the non-expansionists did not: that so long as the right to hold human beings as property was acknowledged in any part of the Union, those who claimed that right would assert it absolutely. South Carolina Senator John C. Calhoun argued (logically, if coldly) that if slaves were legitimate forms of property in the South, then it was not clear why Southerners could not carry their property into any new state, just as Northerners were not restricted from expanding their property in cattle or carts into the West. (The famous decision of Judge Roger Taney in the Dred Scott case ratified Calhoun's argument.) Non-expansionists could retort with procedural arguments that Congress had the right to govern in the territories and that compromises had been made (in 1820 and 1850) that forbade slavery in certain territories; they could contest Taney's decision, in other words, as a matter of legal interpretation. But their moral argument against expansion was critically weakened by the fact that they acquiesced to the continuation of slavery at all, no matter how much they bemoaned its evils.
Non-proliferationists can argue, much like non-expansionists did, that nuclear weapons should simply remain in the states where they already are. But unless that argument is coupled with a strong argument for their total abolition -- even here -- we will continue to find ourselves dealing with latter-day Calhouns who claim for their states a sovereign right to possess weapons of mass destruction. Until that argument for total abolition is also made, loudly and clearly, laws for the abolition of trade in nuclear arms will (like the laws for the abolition of the slave trade) continue to be vulnerable to enforcement problems and charges of hypocrisy.
How can we aver that trading nukes is immoral without making the corollary claim that possessing them in the first place is? No more easily than someone who believed that holding human beings as property was immoral could consistently oppose the slave trade without opposing slavery. And how can we claim that those states who presently hold nuclear weapons -- by the mere accident of their historical discovery and development in certain wealthy countries -- have a right to hold them indefinitely, while those states who, by accident of history, are free of nuclear weapons cannot acquire them? No more easily than someone who opposed the proliferation of slaves in the West could support their continued bondage in the South. To be sure, the compromises that prevented slavery from expanding into the West accomplished a great good, just as every successful prevention of the proliferation of nuclear weapons is good. But as the famous Boston abolitionist Wendell Phillips once said,"let us not mistake the half-way house for the end of the journey." Let us not lower our sights from abolition to non-proliferation.
(Cross-posted at Mode for Caleb, along with a follow-up post.)
Our former colleague, Jon Dresner, created the categories into which the History Blogroll is organized. They've functioned remarkably well for us. Most of them continue to be cohesive and relatively modest in size: 16 History of Science & Technology blogs (Mills Kelly's edwired, for example), 31 Military History blogs (Brett Holman's Airminded, for example), 12 K-12 blogs for elementary and secondary teachers of history (Betsey Newmark's Betsey's Page, for example), 16 primary source blogs (from Samuel Pepys to Andy Warhol), and 20 blogs that are Primarily Non-English Language (Bert de Brun's Dutchblog Israel, for example). Some history blogs defy easy categorization and are currently listed as"Other." Don't let that put you off, however. Damn Interesting and Patahistory are, well, patadamninteresting.
The history ‘sphere has been expanding so rapidly, however, that some of the categories are bulging. In order to keep the list useful, soon we'll probably split a group of"Local History" blogs out of"Regions" and divide"Epochs and Events" into"Pre-Modern" and"Modern". It's all for the sake of helping history bloggers and their readers to find others with similar interests on the net.
I thought of the initiative this morning in reading a piece in Inside Higher Ed on a panel devoted to teaching the survey at OAH. As our colleague Jon Dresner pointed out in the comments section,"nearly every 'new' technique mentioned draws directly on methodologies and themes of scholarship that’s been 'new' for at least two or three decades now: biographical portraits of non-elites; microhistory; material culture history; public history; etc." Incorporating historiography, then, automatically achieves"innovation."
Other suggestions at the panel, however, are a reminder that"new" and"innovative" do not necessarily mean"good." Thomas Bender advocated"one-semester survey courses where research and interpretation are the focus. Bender said universities should assume students are armed with a basic knowledge of history and shouldn’t 'chase [them] away with information they already know.'" In practical terms, at an institution like CUNY, this would mean assuming that students have gotten sufficient background on US history from the New York City high schools, a fanciful notion. But even at a school like Bender's NYU, a place exists for a course that provides students--especially non-majors--with an opportunity to get basic survey knowledge about the American past. Bender's recommendation--a one-semester class with research and interpretation the focus--sounds like most upper-division electives, not a survey.
Even more peculiar was a suggestion from Gayle Olson-Raymer, a professor at Humboldt State University. In her US since 1865 survey this term, Olson-Raymer said that she devoted the class on the civil rights movement to"a classroom debate about the U.S. House of Representatives' immigration bill," with students researching the history of immigration reform as part of their presentations. “Pedagogy tells us if you give students more responsibility, they’ll rise to the challenge,” she said.
The Olson-Raymer lesson plan exemplifies the dangers in the"skills" movement that currently exists in hgiher education. The students in her assignment certainly learned some oral skills, some critical thinking, and some research skills. They also, no doubt, absorbed their professor's belief that the current debate over immigration reform is a" civil rights" issue--as opposed, say, to a labor issue or a border security matter. But the class that Olson-Raymer described did nothing to teach the students about the civil rights movement--probably the single most important topic in a post-1865 survey. Innovation shouldn't be a substitute for content.
But our Cold War presidents kept to the Kennan formula of containment plus deterrence, and we won the Cold War without escalating it into a nuclear war. Enter George W. Bush as the great exponent of preventive war. In 2003, owing to the collapse of the Democratic opposition, Bush shifted the base of American foreign policy from containment-deterrence to presidential preventive war: Be silent; I see it, if you don't. Observers describe Bush as"messianic" in his conviction that he is fulfilling the divine purpose. But, as Lincoln observed in his second inaugural address,"The Almighty has His own purposes."
There stretch ahead for Bush a thousand days of his own. He might use them to start the third Bush war: the Afghan war (justified), the Iraq war (based on fantasy, deception and self-deception), the Iran war (also fantasy, deception and self-deception). There is no more dangerous thing for a democracy than a foreign policy based on presidential preventive war.
The futility of a nuclear attack in actually achieving the goal of such a strike [take out the deep bunkers in Iran] is apparent.
The necessity of opposing any military action in Iran should also be apparent.
In"Political Histories Old and New," Hiram Hover probes the current practice of American political history by comparing and contrasting the work of Steven Hahn and Sean Wilentz.
Our friends at Global Voices have launched a letter-writing and petition campaign for the release of their coordinator for China, Hao Wu. He was arrested on 22 February and has been held in confinement – without charges -- since then. This violates China's Code of Criminal Procedure. There was some hope that he would be released before President Hu Jintao's visit to the United States, but that did not happen, so his supporters are increasingly anxious. Please join Global Voices in the appeal.
David Glenn,"Scholarly Definitions Are Fighting Words in Gun-Law Theorist's Defamation Suit," CHE, 20 April, clarifies the issues in John Lott's law suit against Steven Levitt. Thanks to Henry Farrell at Crooked Timber for the tip.
Martin Van Creveld,"Knowing Why Not to Bomb Iran Is Half the Battle," Forward, 21 April, argues like a historian – you know, from history. [Thanks to Eric Alterman for the tip.] Timothy Garton Ash,"The Tragedy that Followed Hillary Clinton's Bombing of Iran in 2009," Guardian, 20 April, foresees widespread devastation in the future. And, finally, HNN's own Michelle Malkin-lite is taking a beating on her own comment boards.
The case for replacing Cheney, though, is more interesting. Through the tenure of Alben Barkley, the office was essentially impotent. But ever since Nixon during Eisenhower's term (with the possible exceptions of Hubert Humphrey and Spiro Agnew), the V-P's policy influence has expanded--and expanded considerable with the last three V-Ps (Quayle, Gore, and now Cheney). During the Clinton years, this development was celebrated as a good thing--expanding the V-P's role allowed someone talented like Gore to make a positive contribution to the administration, rather than just represent the US at overseas funerals. But what happens when--as we've seen with this administration--the empowered V-P becomes associated with a failed policy initiative? He can't simply be fired, like a cabinet officer.
The result, in essence, is a constitutional conundrum. This is an office that really isn't designed to execute power, since its occupant can't really be fired for incompetence or policy disagreement--yet over the past 17 years, it has morphed into an office of enormous power. Perhaps the Times is right, and that it's logical to assume with an empowered vice presidency, the security of tenure no longer applies.
The largest gathering of us was on Thursday evening, when Inside Higher Ed played host for dinner. HNN's Rick Shenkman joined us; and I enjoyed meeting Oscar Chamberlain, Scott McLemee, and IHE's Scott Jaschik for the first time. At least, I think, I enjoyed meeting Oscar. So, we're enjoying our meal, and I'm running my mouth about having been at the Atlanta airport on Wednesday when it was closed for two hours because of a bomb scare; and being at the Library of Congress Thursday afternoon when one of its buildings was evacuated because of an unidentified package. So, Oscar asks:"Who is known to have been in both places?" Henceforth, thanks to Oscar, I'll be remembered as"Ralph Luker, historian and terrorist-suspect."
I had a terrific time at the convention: chairing a remarkably good session on"Memory, Place, and Race: African American History in the American Landscape," celebrating the publication of Joyce Appleby, ed., The Best American History Essays, 2006 (Palgrave/MacMillan), and enjoying meals, drink, and conversation with the good folk at IHE, with my former students, Amani Whitfield, who teaches now at the University of Vermont and is about to publish his first book, and Nick Turner, who's just left a position at George Washington University, and with my virtual son, Andrew Ackerman, who is a journalist in DC.
In today’s Newsweek, a student at predominantly African-American North Carolina Central carried the Duke 88’s thinking to its logical, if absurd, extreme. The student said that he wanted to see the Duke students prosecuted “whether it happened or not. It would be justice for things that happened in the past.”
Newsweek also became the second major news outlet (ABC is the other) to have received access to the exculpatory evidence of one of the indicted players, Reade Seligmann. (The story confirmed that the D.A. refused to review this evidence before making a charge, despite a request from defense attorneys.) According to the magazine, during or within the 16 minutes after the time of the alleged rape, Seligmann placed eight calls on his cell phone, was waiting on a curb a block away from the site of the alleged rape, where he was picked up by a cab; and he then went to an ATM machine, a fast-food restaurant, and card-swiped his way into his dorm. The cab driver has given a statement, cell-phone records exist of the eight calls, the ATM withdrawal slip was saved, and the card-swipe was timed by Duke’s security system.
At this stage, we don’t know whether a crime was committed in this case. But unless Seligmann had contact with the accuser before the alleged crime (which no one is claiming) or his defense team has engaged in a massive doctoring of evidence that fooled both Newsweek and ABC, it seems unlikely that Seligmann (who has no prior record of any misconduct, and who has received an outpouring of support in recent days from those who know him) committed any crime. In the words of Newsweek—hardly known as a bastion of overstatements—Selgimann’s “lawyer was able to produce evidence that would seem to indicate it was virtually impossible that Seligmann committed the crime.”
How many of the Duke 88 would affix their signatures to a public affirmation that they are “listening” to the exculpatory evidence of a student at their own institution, and expressing concern that local authorities could be veering toward a miscarriage of justice regarding Seligmann? Or do they “listen” only to versions of events that conform to their preconceived worldview, like the student at North Carolina Central, seeking “justice for things that happened in the past”?
A potential scandal at Penn State: the university canceled an art exhibit by a Jewish student, whose work dealt with the effects of Islamic terrorism. The director of the school’s visual arts program proceeded on the grounds that the exhibit"did not promote cultural diversity" or"opportunities for democratic dialogue.” He cited Penn State’s “Statement on Nondiscrimination and Harassment” and “Zero Tolerance Policy for Hate.” In an Orwellian addition, Penn State’s spokesman noted, “We always encourage those who are offended by free speech to use their own constitutional right to free speech to make their concerns known . . . We don't have a right to hide art."
Mayor Ray Nagin came first in the New Orleans mayoral primary yesterday--but with well short of the 50% needed to avoid a runoff. The state's lieutenant governor, Mitch Landrieu (brother of LA's senior senator), finished a strong second.
In more ill fortune for Duke, this is alumni weekend—and President Richard Brodhead received some tough questioning from alumni regarding the university’s decision to suspend Reade Seligmann, who was indicted despite strong exculpatory evidence (which the D.A. refused to review before he proceeded). The indictment of Seligmann, who was well-liked and had no disciplinary or other problems, appears to have turned the tide on campus, leading students to begin standing up for the players—who have experienced what at best could be termed erratic behavior from the D.A.
Was the Vice President actually attending an unusually dull OAH panel? Perhaps Cliopatriarchs who were on the scene can report.
Indeed, in 1966-1967, a rogue group of leading military figures worked hand-in-glove with John Stennis’ Preparedness Investigating Subcommittee to pressure the Johnson administration to intensify the air war in North Vietnam (a policy that, among other things, would have risked an outright Chinese intervention in the war). The Stennis Subcommittee ultimately issued a report chastising the administration’s approach and holding that “logic and prudence” required endorsing whatever military tactics the JCS recommended. To Majority Leader Mike Mansfield, the affair challenged “one of the most fundamental principles of our constitutional structure—the civilian direction of the defense establishment.” The electorate clearly knew what Rumsfeld’s policies were when they re-elected Bush, and the precedent of a military pressure campaign against the civilian chief is a dangerous one: next time, who’s to say the result won’t be like the Stennis Subcommittee effort?
The CIA has fired a veteran agent who leaked the story about the agency’s secret prisons in Europe.
Lots of debate (both fromsupporters and those critical of the idea) on whether Juan Cole merits an appointment at Yale. Cole’s scholarly record hardly seems up to Yale’s standards, suggesting that the prominence he’s received as a “public intellectual” regarding the contemporary Middle East is helping his case. I’d be more persuaded about the merits of Yale’s proposed move if Cole’s commentary was of higher quality.
National Review’s Ramesh Ponnuru has an fine book on the politics of abortion, Ponnuru contends, quite convincingly, that pro-choice activists are deluding themselves if they believe that overturning Roe will necessarily benefit them politically.
Next week we move into the 1990s in my spring-term undergrad elective (US history since 1953); I wanted to track down some clips of Admiral Stockdale from the 1992 v-p debate, which remains for me the most bizarre debate performance in a national campaign. Managed to find a couple here, including his famous, “Who am I? Why am I here?” Not supplied, alas, was his performance when Gore or Quayle was speaking and Stockdale would occasionally be seen wandering the stage behind the speaker.