February 4th, 2009

BMC - cloisters

Changes at the Mawr

So today I was browsing my librarian blogs, and I came across this article from the Philly Inquirer about the only male Haverford student currently living on the Bryn Mawr campus.

The article paints a picture of the lone man among a sea of women (not counting transgender students, which is a whole different story) and talks about what a change this is for the campus, but for me the real story is that there's only one, and that he's the first Haverford man to room at BMC for ten years. Because in my day -- cue olde tyme music and the waving of canes -- there were plenty of men living at BMC, enough to require two co-ed dorms. I even lived in a co-ed dorm my sophomore year (Radnor). The numbers dropped while I was there, from probably a couple of dozen men to only five or six, but men were still a presence on campus. But in hindsight, maybe that was the beginning of the end of the exchange, at least for awhile.

I'm not sure how I feel about it, really. I enjoyed my one year of co-ed living, but I didn't feel like I was missing out when I lived in women-only dorms the other three years. It's just weird, though, knowing that this place, preserved in amber in my mind, has moved beyond the place I remember. So far, whenever I've gone back, it's still been Bryn Mawr, the place I know and love. I wonder how much would have to change for that not to feel true anymore. Probably a lot -- even just looking at pictures on the net makes me feel warm and fuzzy.
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Oh hello there, liberal media

We haven't had a good political rant in awhile...

Check out this Eric Boehlert column on Obama, the press, and "bipartisanship" (quotation marks his):

Virtually all the news accounts are stressing the same story: If there's little or no bipartisan support for Obama's stimulus package, then it's Obama fault, and his fault alone. (No surprise, the media narrative echoes the latest GOP talking point, as dutifully pushed by RNC writers like Peggy Noonan.)

A bit ironic, isn't it? While addressing the issue of bipartisanship (i.e. "involving cooperation, agreement, and compromise between two major political parties") the press holds only one party accountable: the Democrats. Apparently, that's how the press now views the issue of bipartisanship -- it's something Democrats must bring to fruition.

In fact, the press has set up Republicans with perhaps the easiest short-term political victory on record. All the GOP has to do is oppose Obama on the stimulus package, and the Beltway media will proclaim Obama the loser. (Heck, they already have.) Does it get any easier than that? Republicans literally do nothing and then get crowned the winner.

One of the reasons I voted for Obama was his apparently sincere belief in bipartisanship. Most of the time, I don't think anything meaningful gets done in government without some level of compromise, and sometimes the system demands it. But there is such a thing as going too far, and I think we've reached that point, and then some. When Obama and the Congressional Democratic leadership go out of their way to court Republican votes, and are rewarded for their efforts by not receiving a single one, bipartisanship has failed, and it's not the fault of the people who reached out.

All that would be bad enough without the media painting Obama and the Democrats as the obstructionists. That's just the icing on the ever-more-rancid cake. The article has many examples and is highly recommended. Eric Boehlert is rapidly becoming my hero.