Adventures in Ethics and Science

Archives for November, 2006

Yeah, I’m grading. (Maybe you would be too if you weren’t reading the blogs, hmm?) But I wanted to check in. I pulled my back loading the car for the last soccer game of the season. What’s the proper inference to draw from that (besides the obvious: that I’m getting old and all this grading…

This is not a “cute” story. It’s an infuriating story about a school climate gone mad. And, although I suspect an organizational psychologist could give a nuanced analysis of the situation, that’s not my area of expertise, so I’m just going to tell the story. Elder offspring was sent to the Vice Principal’s office yesterday.…

Pencil ready? To mark the resignation of Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, here’s a brief quiz (essay format, of course) on the epistemology lesson embedded in his comments from a February 12, 2002 Department of Defense news briefing. The comments, poetically transcibed by Slate, are as follows:

Carnivals to feed your brain.

I want to blog, but I’m trying to catch up with grading and grant-writing and such in the aftermath of the PSA. I won’t offer a detailed list of excuses like some bloggers I could name. (However, I will say that I’m going to check WebMD to see if intracranial bleeding is a normal reaction…

The 110th Congress has been elected. Whether it’s the crowd you voted for or not, there’s quite a lot of talk now about a new direction, a new civility, possibly even a new pony (but I might not have heard that last part right). So, given that the Congresspersons will be looking for our votes…

My election day tale of woe.

Actually, after filling out all four sides of my absentee ballot last night (stupid California legislation-by-ballot-measure!), it was really no problem to drop off the ballot at a polling place this morning — there was one in the library of our elementary school, so I swung by after dropping off the kids. There were many…

Get out there and vote, people!

I voted. If you’re registered to vote, you should, too. If you don’t know your polling place, you can check here. If you think you are registered, but you don’t appear on the voter rolls at your polling place, ask for a provisional ballot. If you have trouble, don’t let it slide! Make some noise:…

Chad Orzel has an excellent post up about good ways to use PowerPoint for a presentation. In a similar vein, I’d like to offer some reasons for academics in disciplines (like philosophy) in which it is the convention to read papers to each other at professional meetings to consider breaking with tradition and not just…

The student loan letter.

Something quite unexpected happened to me: I managed to pay off a student loan nearly a year before I go up for tenure! Who’d have thunk it? Here’s the letter they sent me, with a bit of reading between the lines:

A backward glance at PSA 2006

ScienceBloggers meet in the three-dimensional world: (from left) Janet Stemwedel, John Lynch, Prof. Steve Steve, John Wilkins, David Ng, Ben Cohen. I managed to get back home last night from the PSA meeting in Vancouver, although just barely. My co-symposiasts got a rental car and headed off to see mountains, an expedition I’d have joined…