Economics in motion pictures: Essay deadline March 7

February 21, 2008

E-mail from the Dallas Fed:

The deadline for entries for this year’s Essay Contest, “Economics in Motion Pictures,” is almost here. To ensure that your students’ entries arrive in time to be eligible for the contest, the essays must be postmarked by March 7.

Please remind students to review the rules of entry carefully. For details, visit

If you have any questions, please contact Heather McDonald at heather.mcdonald@dal.frb.orgblockquote>

Barbara Jordan’s birthday, February 21

February 21, 2008

Barbara Jordan would have been 72 today.

Barbara Jordan statue, Austin Chronicle hoto

Thanks to Pam for alerting me to the anniversary.

In her stirring keynote address at the 1976 Democratic National Convention, held in New York City in Madison Square Garden, Jordan said:

A government is invigorated when each of us is willing to participate in shaping the future of this nation.

In this election year we must define the common good and begin again to shape a common good and begin again to shape a common future. Let each person do his or her part. If one citizen is unwilling to participate, all of us are going to suffer. For the American idea, though it is shared by all of us, is realized in each one of us.

I covered that convention as a stringer for a western television station. I recall the spirit in the hall when Jordan spoke, and the great spirit that enveloped the entire convention and the City of New York. After the convention every night the cops would stop taxis so delegates could ride. I remember watching two cops help a woman out of a wheel chair and into a cab, and the cabbie saying that the cops had never done that before — and he liked it. Jimmy Carter came out of that convention, and won the election, defeating Gerald Ford.

32 years ago. Barbara Jordan didn’t live to see her party come up with a woman and an African American man as the top two candidates for the nomination. That’s too bad. She could have given a great, appropriate speech. Maybe the Dems oughtta just run a film of Jordan from 1976.


On the road again

February 21, 2008

Time flies, people sometimes don’t.  I’m in O’Hare, now with a few hours to spend because, for the third time today, fifth flight, a flight I was booked on was canceled due to weather.

O'Hare, American's Concourse H-K

Above, the neck of American Airlines’ Concourse H and K, in Terminal 3; picture is many months old, but I like it because it contains many hours of my sweat in hammering out the lease agreements.  The photo is from a Chicago limousine service.

The trip to DFW Airport that I used to make a couple of times a week minimum in about 25 minutes took nearly an hour today — the roads are wider, but the traffic is much heavier.  The trip from the curb to the gate that I used to sprint now takes 40 minutes, and I have to get undressed.

And then the flight to St. Louis was cancelled.  And then the flight from St. Louis to Bart Simpson’s Springfield was cancelled . . . I tried a back door, to Chicago and then on United back to Springfield (Illinois — isn’t every Springfield Bart’s hometown?).  The hop from O’Hare was cancelled.  I’ll miss the 3:00 p.m. seminar start.

It’s been more than 15 years since I actually got stuck on a weather delay.  Airlines fly very well, most of the time.  I also fly about 99.7% less than I used to fly.

It’s a lot of trouble.  It’s a good cause.  The Bill of Rights Institute and the Liberty Fund teamed up for a seminar on presidents and the Constitution, focusing on Lincoln, in Springfield.  I always get material that sparks classroom discussion and great learning experiences for students.

Our department chair told me that our district won’t consider this as part of my required in-service training, however.  Go figure.  I can sit through hours of people who don’t know Excel as well as I do and be counted as learning; but when I get great sessions with hard reading requirements and outstanding discussion with great experts, zip.  Quality in education?  What?

Blogging light the next couple of days.

Science advising and the founders: John Quincy Adams

February 21, 2008

Phot of ex-president John Quincy Adams

Photograph of ex-President John Quincy Adams; found at LawBuzz

Have you signed up to support Science Debate 2008?

Science policy has been critical to our nation’s defense and economic health and development from the founding. Historian Hunter Dupree presented 90 minutes of discussion on John Quincy Adams’ role as advisor in science to the founders, in 1989.

You can listen to the entire remarkable story at the University of Virginia’s Miller Center for Public Affairs website, or download it for your iPod/MP3 player.


Science Debate 2008 logo

February 21, John Quincy Adams, Malcolm X

February 21, 2008

Any connections?  Any correlations?

On February 21, 1848, Rep. John Quincy Adams suffered a stroke on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives.  He died on February 23.  Adams is the only ex-president to have returned to elective office after his presidency.

On February 21, 1965, Malcolm X was assassinated at a rally in New York City.

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