Wednesday, February 23, 2005


Still confused but on a higher level?

Let's take it again - that whole thing about open intellectual debate is a hard thing to keep up, for some people.

This speech can get a man fired from one of the most prestigeous chairs in the academic world. The debate over Summers argument concerning the lack of females in the scientific field has fired up feminists in other places who call for resignations and more. (To the statistical matter of the case: there is a valid reasoning and scrutinizing of Summers' speech which is concerned with the standard deviations Summers doesn't seem to master, as Posner points out.)

Yet, many bloggers have showed the controversy inside the controversy over freedom of speech: Churchill vs. Summers. MSM is catching up. And the positioning is sad. If the speech on 14th January is accused of being stereotypical, then so is the blasting of Lawrence Summers.

While the columnists in NY Times and Washington Post (Eugene Robinson, Anne Applebaum) are having a field day with Summers, Fox News is playing the role of the indignant watchdog in the Churchill case. O'Reilly is fired up, no doubt about it. No he seems on a manhunt, and is trying to make it impossible for Churchill to visit EWU. But there are fortunately some Fox columnists who give time for reflection. Neal McCluskey from the Cato Institute, point out that the case could have been taken care of in a much faster manner, if students were adressed as consumers, and taxpayers agenda (or, implicitly - Bill O'Reilly) didn't influence the field of social science, the deal with Churchill wouldn't be so much of a public policy issue.

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