notes from the interblags: some points of interest as the winter draws near

• Michael Bérubé points to the funny little blog fafblog, which back in 2004 might have coined the best little phrase I have read in a while, during a spoof interview with James Dobson (which sounds eerily like a real interview with James Dobson): “Oh no! Not Western Civilization! That’s where all my friends live!”

• Rhosa at Blogora quotes PSU’s Graham Spanier’s Chronicle column from a few weeks ago, “Is Campus Activism Dead — or Just Misguided?”

• NY Times: Did you hear the one that Sarah Palin thought all of Africa is a continent? Well, it’s probably a hoax from a fake think take. Check out this article.

• It’s about time someone told Bible stories with Legos!

• Lots of folks have been talking about the professor who shamed his students by posting about their plagiarism on his blog. Eek! A pedagogy of shame is not good in my book. Joseph Orosco takes up the topic, and the teacher offers a defense in the comments as well.

• I’ve been wanting to write about this for a while now, but Ralph Nader’s use of “uncle tom” a while back is interesting, because it sparked a debate between a friend and me about his word choice. I think it was definitely a poor word choice, because people ignored his ideas. But I won’t go into detail, because I’m just shooting links out here. (Also, I don’t like the way Faux News frames the whole thing, either.)

• Silverton, Oregon, elected trans mayor Stu Rasmussen: KGW Portland, KTVB Idaho, Fox News, Feminist Philosophers.

• Telegraph: “Councils ban ‘elitist’ and ‘discriminatory’ Latin phrases”

• Rhetoric gets stabbed again. Stanley Fish, in chastising psychology for taking so long to stop supporting torture, calls psychology the heir of rhetoric, where “The emphasis is not on what is true, but on what works, what gets results even if the results are obtained by torture. If the testimony you are citing has been elicited by torture, just say that ‘it was in order to discover the truth that our ancestors wished to make use of torture.'”

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