Thursday, January 04, 2007

Our Karl Rove: Welcome Back; You Did Dem Good. 

Our Karl Rove: Welcome Back; You Did Dem Good.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Everything you need to know... 

...about the launch of the Edwards campaign can be found linked on this Diary on DailyKos. An excellent reference.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

the right thing to do 

the new york times has a front page article about the iraqi asylum issue i blogged about a few weeks back. the last post quoted an op-ed piece my friend kirk, and kirk is quoted in the times article as well.

among the many things that gerald ford is being remembered for today is his decision to open this country up to some 150,000 vietnamese refugees. president ford thought that we owed it to vietnamese people who stuck their neck out to assist the american project in vietnam when that project fell apart.

thousands of iraqis have stuck their neck out to support the american project in iraq. as much as i personally think that project was doomed to failure from the beginning, the fact remains that iraqis have risked their lives by heeding our country's call. as iraqi descends into one large refugee crisis, we owe it to them to help and get them refugee status.

as the times article notes, the bush administration has not been receptive to claims of iraq refugees, permitting only 500 to resettle in the u.s. last year. the bush administration has not explained its reluctance to help iraqi refugee, but obviously the refugee crisis flies in the face of the happy face they usually try to draw on the country. nevertheless, i think this issue should transcend the politics of the war. regardless what you may think about the invasion, we have an obligation to help those iraqis whose life and family are at risk because they worked for americans. turning them away won't help us "win" in iraq and it might discourage others from lending the u.s. a hand in the future.

(cross posted)

Science Blogging Conference Update 

NCSBClogo175.pngThe conference is only 19 days from today! It's getting really exciting!

The program is shaping really well:

On Thursday (January 18th) we will have a teach-in session. About 20 people have signed up so far. We'll use Wordpress to help them start their own blogs, so I'll have to make one of my own in advance and play around to figure out the platform before I teach others.

On Friday (January 19th), we'll have dinner and all the bloggers present will read their posts. We have not decided on the place yet, but perhaps a site that has wifi, or a screen and a projector would be good as the posts can be seen as well as heard.

On Saturday (January 20th), we'll have a busy program. We have two speakers: a scientist - Hunt Willard (director of the Duke Insitute for Genome Sciences & Policy) and a science blogger - Janet Stemwedel (Adventures in Ethics And Science).

Then, we'll have four (or five) break-out sessions in an Unconference format - the participants take the lead and the leaders guide and moderate.

We decided not to have these sessions cover different areas of science, but different ways blogs, podcasts and other internet technologies can be used: a) research (e.g., using a blog as a public lab-notebook, online publishing), b) teaching (using the online technologies in the classroom), c) popularization of science (how to blog well, including the importance of visual props - illustration) and d) informing the public (e.g., public health, medicine, countering un-scientific forces in the society, etc. perhaps broken into wo sessions: one on science, one on medicine and public health). We have lined up four excellent people to moderate these sessions (not everything is on the wiki-page yet but will be soon).

Afterwards, we will go to dinner. If you have registered already, or plan to register soon, please do not forget to sign up for one of the dinners. Just edit the wiki and enter your name where you want.

At this moment we have 109 people registered for the conference. Some locals will probably sign up at the last minute. Some of the people coming from very far away may still be waiting for good deals on plane tickets before they sign up. If you are considering this, it would be good if you could sign up as soon as possible so we have a good idea how many people to plan for in terms of space, food, swag, etc.

If you browse through the list of registrants, you will see what a great diversity of people there will be, a potential for cross-fertilization leading to high hybrid vigor! There are people from four continents coming to Chapel Hill in January to meet with us, as well as people from a number of States. There are science, medical and technology bloggers, web-designers, research scientists working in academia, government and industry, physicians, postdocs, graduate and undergraduate students, even high school students. There will be editors of science and medical journals and magazines, journalism professors and students, local journalists, and science writers. There will be science teachers at all levels - elementary, middle, high school and college. There will be local elected officials, and staff of state departments. And, I hope, you will be there as well!

We have attracted quite a lot of cool sponsors for the conference, so you can excpect some really good stuff in your swag bags! Still, both Anton and I are quite bad at begging for money. We do need a little bit more - can you or your organization be a sponsor, or donor, or host? If so, let Anton know as soon as possible.

And we may just be able to pull it off to have the Anthology ready to be distributed at the conference.

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