My take on computer science --
algorithms, networking, information theory --
and related items.
Harry Lewis is a great asset to the University, but I wonder if it might have been better to submit this piece to a more reputable forum. The comments at HuffPo really miss the point.
I did have to wipe the foam off the back side of the screen reading some of them. I didn't set out to write this piece at all. I did it as a favor to Janine Wedel, the author of "Shadow Elite," a book that the site is touting this week. That book has a chapter on the Russian mess, picking up threads Wedel had written about even before the Institutional Investor article that was in the air at Harvard back in early 2003.
Scary stuff. Often nowadays, we dismiss critics of the opaque powers that be as merely "standing athwart history, yelling 'stop'" (twisting Buckley's intent*). But things like this show that we need more people willing to do just that. A few months ago everyone was talking about Keynesian economics as being our savior; those voices seem rather silent nowadays, yet another example of forgetting a past that looks like it might be regrettable in light of no evident economic effect. These are the people in charge of not just Harvard's money, but yours and mine. Perhaps that's not the point of the article, but that's my fear.* Buckley, of course, meant that many changes need opposition, even as others are necessary; heck, even necessary changes need opposition so as to be done reasonably. I suppose it bears noting that perhaps his most well-known quotation is, "I am obliged to confess I should sooner live in a society governed by the first two thousand names in the Boston telephone directory than in a society governed by the two thousand faculty members of Harvard University."
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