Hand-picked and farm-fresh–
⇒Linked articles in bold purple
◆ My evaluation of Pres. Trump’s speech to Congress is posted separately here.
Bottom Line: The speech was quite good, both as a performance and as an outline of Pres. Trump’s policy agenda.
- You can like the agenda, or loathe it, but he put its best foot forward.
- Most of all, the speech was “Presidential” and far more effective than the sharp tone of his Inaugural Address.
As a performance, it was serious but uplifting, outlining his big agenda in affirmative terms.
His decision to begin by condemning racial and religious hatred, and doing so with a bow to Black History Month, was perfect. It set the right tone. –Charles Lipson
◆ Good News on Free Speech at Middlebury College, and it comes from the top (The American Interest)
Middlebury’s Political Science department, however, has agreed to promote and co-sponsor the event [featuring author Charles Murray]. Department chair Bertram Johnson says he asks two basic questions when considering whether to sponsor a lecture: “Is it related to political science and is there sufficient interest that it would generate student interest and attendance?” Meanwhile, Middlebury College President Laurie Patton plans to attend the lecture because, as her spokesman put it, “Our view is that if we stand for anything, it’s the free exchange of ideas.” –Harry Zieve Cohen, writing in The American Interest
Comment: Kudos to Middlebury. The department chair and university president said exactly the right thing. Other colleges should follow their lead.
◆ Kellyanne Conway’s feet. That’s what the media and Twitterverse are interested in.
She tucked her feet under herself on top of the Oval Office couch. The media went crazy attacking her. (Here’s the NYT story.)
They said nothing–nor should they have–about Pres. Obama putting his feet on the desk in the same office.
By the way, far and away the dumbest comment comes from Marc Lamont Hill. As usual, you can’t make up stuff this dumb.
Comment: Give it a rest. It’s not discourteous or wrong. What is discourteous is downplaying what was really happening in the room. The President was meeting with the heads of many historically-black colleges, all gathered around his desk.
◆ Good news about Detroit. It’s coming back, starting with downtown (The Economist)
Comment: Friends have been telling me this for several years. It’s great to see a report from The Economist substantiating it.
◆ The future of Virtual Reality, as Google imagines it (MIT Technology Review)
With VR it’s about you being convinced that you’re physically in another space. VR is an embodied medium: creators are taking that detached eye and reattaching it to someone’s face. VR reminds us of the nuances of experiences, what connects people with each other, with places, with things in the real world. And that to me is the key to really understanding what kind of storytelling could even exist in a VR space. –MIT Technology Review
♥ Hat Tip for helpful suggestions:
◆ Tom Elia for Middlebury College free-speech issue