I warned you about the quiet time. Just got back from a very nice day at Harvard, mostly in the music department but my talk was at the Mahindra Humanities Center. Met lots of cool people, had great conversations which made me think about stuff. What more can you ask for? Unrelated to any of that, I stayed in the faculty club, where my guest room was covered entirely with wallpaper featuring Victorian era people golfing. The semiosis is almost unbearable. I also visited Occupy Harvard briefly, which was an interesting phenomenon. My favorite part of their FAQ:
Q4. Are you targeting me as one of the 1%?
We are not attacking you as a person, but trying to reform a system that stifles equality of opportunity. Obviously, Harvard students work and have worked hard to get to where they are, but we are asking everyone to reconceptualize a system that leaves 1 percent of the population with a highly disproportionate share of the wealth. For example, the top 1 percent controls twice as great a share of the national income today as it did thirty years ago; we think a system whereby 1 percent of the country controls 40% of the wealth, and all the power that comes with it, is profoundly unjust, and indicative of a system that requires critical rethinking.
I spoke with one of the organizers in the afternoon who said their tack is that the most privileged people are the most responsible. Sounds good to me.
Yesterday the MUNACA staff returned to work. Full details on the settlement are here. I’m very happy for them, and for us too.
The students completed a draft of an alternative inquiry into the events of November 10th. It is very well done. We are waiting for the Jutras investigation to become public and for the administration’s response.
The governance problems that led to the strike and riot police attacking students remain completely unsolved.