It’s been weeks since the election, so hopefully by now we’ve all scrubbed the blue and red eyeshadow from drooping eyelids and peeled the ‘I Voted’ stickers off our jacket lapels. Our neighbors finally have muted Baracka Flacka Flame. Some of us are elated, others disappointed; but one thing is clear for all of us it was a wild ride, and everyone’s first instinct is to simply exhale.

But a long-awaited conclusion to this race should be no cue to abandon political momentum, wherever it carries our respective lives. You’ve probably heard if not repeated that now-famous quote by activist Mohandas Gandhi: “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” Considering the leader’s lifelong commitment to pacifist social reform, Gandhi’s rhetoric was perhaps more literal than popular Western reiteration might suggest. No, we’re not suggesting our readers drop out tomorrow morning to join the Peace Corps. However, we do note that armchair academia and box-checking will only get us so far. We are often divided in opinion over the President’s fulfillment of his first-term campaign platform of “Change” and “Hope,” but regardless of our feelings on any issue, we as citizens must also remember to look to ourselves as sources for progress, no matter what our leaders are up to. Real people create real ideas, and the often-seemingly small but deliberate efforts we make is what alters the course of society.

Remember John F. Kennedy’s famous inaugural address? “Ask not what you can do for your country,” he implored us, “but what your country can do for you.” And the man was right. Those ballot measures don’t write themselves, you know.

R.S.


As the beginning to each holiday season starts to set in, Cal students tend to zoom intoWhat Cal Students Should Be Thankful For overdrive. We fantasize about winter break, especially after Thanksgiving has come and gone. In case you didn’t take a couple of seconds to say your thank-yous this past week, there’s still time! Marvel at all the reasons that being at Berkeley should make you thankful:

1)      You’re still a Cal student… hopefully! That’s something to be proud of, right? After all, you can’t really get higher than #1 for a public school.

2)      Finals are still two whole weeks away. That gives us all extra time to procrastinate on studying, because that’s no way to spend dead week! Sure, you may have had some homework to do over the holidays, but that has to be better than those college applications you were frantically filling out a year or two ago.

3)      Jeff Tedford is finally getting yanked after yet another dismal 3-9 season for the men’s football team. That means you only have to wait 10 more months for a well-coached football team!

4)      There have been less than 10 days that have had more than 0.10 inches of rain so far this school year. Considering that November is the fifth wettest month, it’s not saying much, but enjoy the good weather before February rolls around!

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Among the tabs for CNN, NBC, the deplorably slow Google election results, and the FOX News you had open just for kicks, you may not have had time for social networking on election night. Who are you kidding – you probably popped open Tumblr for the continuing influx of memes or Twitter for Donald Trump’s call for a march on Washington. But the most interesting soiial network every time there’s a major news event is Facebook, because it’s people that you – hopefully – personally know talking about things about which they know little to nothing about. If your friends are anything like ours, they provided for plenty of unintentional comedy with their cute status updates that spammed the newsfeed.

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Do you dig democracy and can’t wait to make your voice heard in the November election? Or maybe you are simply entertained by politics?  Whatever your views may be, this election year is one of the most important yet, and what better way to fuel the electoral excitement that to watch the two presidential candidates duke it out in the presence of your peers?!

The ASUC Vote Coalition and the Robert C. Matsui Center for Politics and Public Service are hosting a viewing party for the first presidential debate of this election season, which is  being held at The University of Colorado, Denver and hosted by Jim Lehrer of NewsHour.

DEETS:

When: October 3, 2012

Time: 6 p.m.

Where: 111 Moses Hall on campus

The event is the first of many designed to bring politically active and interested youth together to view and discuss the presidential debates that are taking place within the next few weeks. Come join a multitude of student groups partisan and non-partisan to the event of the election!

Can’t make it to the event? You can still watch (or Tivo) the debates! Catch the livestream here or on such channels as C-SPAN, ABC, CBS, FOX and NBC, as well as all cable news channels including CNN, Fox News and MSNBC among others.

DEMOCRACY 2012

Image source: DonkeyHotey under Creative Commons


3004717988_06761377b7Well, not entirely. He simply wants to extend the amount of time students spend in the classroom by calling for an extension to the school year. The president declared that American students are lagging behind their international counterparts in subjects like math and science, to the detriment of our country’s future.

We can’t object to raising academic standards for primary and secondary education. But summer has historically been a time of blissful intellectual atrophy! Forcing students to toil over schoolwork in the blazing heat of summer … that’s just … actually that’s just like the last few days here. (Hello, triple-digits!)

Okay, so maybe it’s not too bad an idea, especially considering that the school year wouldn’t necessarily have to be extended by much: Schools in the United States offer an average of 180 days of instruction per year, in contrast to the average of 196 offered in the countries touting the highest student achievement levels: Japan, South Korea, Germany, and New Zealand.

That’s less than a month, but “[it] makes a difference,” Obama insists, “especially … for poorer kids who may not see as many books in the house during the summers, aren’t getting as many educational opportunities.”

The president also called upon teachers, noting that their performance is as integral to the success of our education system as the performance of their students. He stressed accountability, read more »


Goodwin Liu of UC Berkeley’s Boalt Hall School of Law is slated to snag an Obama nomination for the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. If confirmed, he’ll be wear the coveted “sole full-time Asian American judge on a federal appellate court” crown. Every little boy’s dream, right?

Allegedly Liu’s got fans on both side of the aisle, however, the Clog remains skeptical. He’s been known to be “affable and savvy” in front of the camera, engaging in some pretty angry nose-to-nose dialogue read more »


For those of you who frequently find yourselves delivering defensive knee-jerk monologues concerning the vast merits of public education to all your bratty private liberal arts school friends who major in things like “Hobism” and “Mermaid Semantics,” you’re not alone. In fact, here’s s’mo fuel for the fire.

Turns out, a number of Bay Area private schools are starting to feel the pressure from President Barack-ccidental to improve lagging (below 20 percent) graduation rates. This presents an interesting paradox for said schools, forced into the challenge of keeping enrollment up while simultaneously keeping the slackers at bay.

Look, we all know how malleable stats can be. And we don’t mean to be catty, or hate on advocates of liberal arts education. Having said that, we can’t help but feel slightly validated with our average *ahem* 90 percent grad rate.

Image Source: wackystuff under Creative Commons
Focus on graduation could be rough for small private colleges [Inside Bay Area]


Newsies!Organize protests as fast as you can. Yoo can’t catch Yoo. He’s the gingerbread man.  [The Bay Area]

OK, we take that back. This Berkeley mom could probably catch him. Too bad she’s busy being a badass on behalf of her daughter. [SJ Mercury News]

El Presidente presented over 100 young scientists with Presidential Early Career Awards for Scientists and Engineers today at the White House. Being the narcissists interested and spirited students that we are, we counted one win for UC Berkeley and two for Lawrence  Berkeley National Laboratory. [Press Release]

Aaand, Prop 8 trial updates out the wazoo. (Obviously.) [SF Appeal, NYT, Chron]

Earlier: They’re Not Gonna Take It


As you Hass kids are probably well aware, there’s big money in India. It’s bigger than outsourcing and off-shoring. It’s bigger than back office jobs and massive tele-operator centers. A recent segment of NPR’s “Forum With Michael Krasny” explores the economic ties between the United States and India, a bond which Obama prophesies to be “one of the defining partnerships of the 21st century.”

According to Bay Area Council Economic Institute CEO Sean Randolph and UC Berkeley’s visiting scholar Vivek Wadhwa, this bond is hella strong right here in northern California, the venture capital hub of Uh-mer-kuh. Here’s why: read more »

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When you’re shattering a bottle of Mickey’s against the far wall of Cloyne Court’s courtyard this weekend (or any weekend!) keep in mind that this wall is shared by a now 5 million dollars more prestigious Goldman School of Public Policy. Richard and Rhoda, your names will remain in letters.

The extra funds will allow the Goldman School to grow and develop read more »


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