these stories are the best

From a friend who is on the Harvard faculty:

i take a car service to the airport this morning. driver is an older irish boston type, very talkative; do i know the history of cambridge, the reason behind the establishment clause (“[another Harvard professor] didn’t…”), etc. as we’re hitting the airport, he hands me his self-published tract on the crisis in public education and how to solve it by canceling the Simpsons.

“you should put it on the web,” i say, which is what i usually say when handed a self-published tract by a cab driver. “i did,” he said, “and it’s under a creative commons license.” (and, he adds disapprovingly, [the other prominent Harvard professor] hadn’t even heard of creative commons.”)

i had to tell him to put it in a wiki just to retain my sense of being anywhere near the cutting edge.

Here‘s the book.

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4 Responses to these stories are the best

  1. ibar says:

    that’s a great story!
    your friend should have told him to put it on a “podcast” to stay on the razor-sharp blade of cutting edge… 🙂

  2. Karl says:

    Quite funny, given that the Simpsons is only still on life support thanks to innumerable writers with Harvard degrees.

    I don’t think kids watch the Simpsons much anymore, but that could just be my observer’s bias. If he’s talking about public Universities, then maybe he has a leg to stand on…


  3. E.P. says:

    Get rid of the Simpsons? What a jerk! This is the best thing on television! This show has so many jokes crammed into every episode that it actually requires that one should be well-informed and reasonably educated, to understand every single nuance of satire. Yes, it is true that most of the writers are graduates of Harvard. That is no accident.

    I am glad to see a more widespread use of CC licenses, but I can’t stand these control freaks that want to restrict what people can or cannot see.

  4. atcooper says:

    Has anybody read it to at least verify his solution is banning the Simpsons?

    Shoot… I’ll do a quick scan now.

    Read parts of it and found it’s interesting enough to give a complete reading even though I’m a bit wary about some of the references he cites at the end.

    I found no mention of the Simpsons (a simple find command). I looked at where television shows up, and while he does betray a disdain for tv for reasons I sympathize with, he did not suppose banning the Simpsons would solve the education crisis.

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