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Current Issue: Volume 26, No. 2 , Week of January 29, 2006

Rage, Hamas, the Middle East

One of jeanne's versions of rage collaged with bits and pieces of Muhammad Muheisen's Front Page photo on New York Times, January 27, 2006. (Associated Press).

Peace Process?
We're Not Handling This Well

NEWS and Announcements Site Map
News and Announcements from the Department of Criminal Justice, UWP
News and Announcements from the Department of Sociology, CSUDH

google
WWW www.habermas.org

California State University, Dominguez Hills
University of Wisconsin, Parkside
Created: January 27, 2006
Latest Update: February 1, 2006

E-Mail Icon jeannecurran@habermas.org
takata@uwp.edu

Topic of the Week:
One World, Our Idea, Making It Work

Democracy and Policing the World

There's a real problem in being the policeman and the judge at the same time. Checks and balances, giving the police a different standard from that of the judge, make it more likely that we will indeed get the result we want: evil controlled, the innocent protected along with their voice respected. (Answerability - from Bakhtin)

Greg actually used the expression that the U.S. should be the world's policeman (on tranform_dom last week). Now that Hamas has won a mority of the votes for the new Palestinian parliament, how are we going to resolve this issues of policing especially Palestine and Israel, as we seek to stop the killing of innocent men, women, and children on both sides of that conflict?

When ENFORCEMENT is your primary objective, your perspective is altered, for the environment of space, time within which human relationships unfold affects directly those human interactions. We make the unstated assumptions that the police are the "good guys," and the judges are supposed to clarify transgressions against the "rules," which are most often constructed from the social reality of the lawmakers, who are part of the same infrastructure as the police. So is it justice, if the judge and the police share the same rule-making perspective?

When JUSTICE and PEACE are your primary objective, then you need to guarantee that all validity claims are heard in good faith. (Habermas on governance discourse, Between Norms and Facts). All validity claims, in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, would include the claims of the Hamas group. If we are the police of the world, then someone apart from us must be the judge. Our system of checks and balances, folks. (The U.S. Constitution)

Policing as Paternalism

But some conservatives mean more by "policing" the world. As I understand it, they mean policing the world as a parent might, for the parent in the family is the only one with the knowledge, the economic base, and the ethical responsibility for guiding the family. If that is the case, I do understand some of the rage of the Palestinians, of the Arabs, in that they are not children. They are adults with votes and ethical beliefs of their own. Feminists and minorities have been raising this issue of paternalism for a long time now. It doesn't somehow seem like a good idea to plunge head on into paternalism for the global scene, when so many humans are protesting it in their own nation-states.

If I support Israel, and I certainly do, (My family is Jewish, by any definition one can come up with for Jewish- right of return and all.) then can I refuse to hear the Palestinian validity claim and call it just? Yes. If I live next door and am threatened by violence, it's quite human to fear and fight that violence. The same is true for the Palestinians. But that's why we have law and court systems, apart from the non-representative, non-democratic way in which laws are traditionally written and enforced. So weren't our forefathers remarkably wise to build in checks and balances, even though those checks and balances haven't prevented injustice in the real world of our own nation-state? The checks and balances are meant, as is the hearing of legal cases, to bring cooler heads than those involved in the dispute to guide those temporarily not so cool.

Jonathan Lear's "Arrogance of Knowledge"

One of the problems with policing as paternalism is that we are treating others as children instead of thinking adults. The Palestinians are sure that their cause is just, and that they are "right;" they "know." The Israelis are also sure that their cause is just and that they are "right;" they "know." So when they have no global community from which they can expect a good faith hearing of their respective validity claims, and when they believe there is a "right solution," some of our world citizens are bound to be hurt by others if we do not work at helping them negotiate some compromise with which they can both live in peace. I say "work at it," because there is no world government dedicated to the just hearing of all validity claims in good faith, and with the best negotiating skills for restorative justice.

Jonathan Lear is a practicing Freudian psychiatrist, Professor at the University of Chicago, and member of the University of Chicago's Committee on Twentieth Century Thought. His book, Open Minded, deals with the issue of the "arrogance of knowledge." Maybe we should also consider the "arrogance of belief." By these terms, I mean that we cannot, without engaging in arrogance (in a world that honors the Other and the diverse), take only one perspective, our Own, into account. A "judicial temperament," when we are lucky enough to find one in our judges, is one that respects that just decision-making is a compromise, a compromise that should attempt to restore and maintain good faith understanding of all validity claims.

Hamas' majority in the Palestinian elections has brought this issue to the forefront in ways that none of us, here in the U.S. or in Israel or in Palestine, can ignore. I don't have the answers. I am not convinced there are any "right answers," but there is certainly compromise, compromise that should attempt to restore and maintain good faith understanding of all validity claims.

Just in case you've been thinking that this is just a Middle East problem. Take a look at an article on Saturday, January 28, 2006 on the front page of the New York Times on the problems engendered by paternalism in foreign affairs:

New York Times Photo by
Scott Nelson/World Picture News, for The New York Times

Campaign posters in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. The presidential vote set for Feb. 7 has been delayed four times amid a wave of violence.

Backup of New York Times article discusses the contradictions in our support of Haitian democracy. Discussion questions up soon. How does this relate to No Child Left Behind? Maybe we need to think on No Nation Left Behind? There are so many levels of complexity in democracy in our world.

love and peace, jeanne

NEWS, Announcements, and

Current Events Discussion Topics:

  • Joining Discussion and Learning Records Groups on Yahoo:

  • Grade Corrections, Fall 2005:

    We processed lots of grades, removing the Incompletes on Wednesday. It'll take them a few days to go through the channels and get posted. I haven't picked up the new messages on learning records yet. Will try to get to these tomorrow.

    These incompletes were the resulto of my inability to pick up your messages from transform_dom when we hit almost 10,000 messages. I need you to post them on learning records jeanne January 25, 2006.

    Note that jeanne's e-mail is not functioning properly. That's jeannecurran@habermaas.org Reach me at tranform_dom until I can get it fixed.

  • Grade Corrections, Fall 2005:

    We processed lots of grades, removing the Incompletes on Wednesday. It'll take them a few days to go through the channels and get posted. I haven't picked up the new messages on learning records yet. Will try to get to these tomorrow.

    These incompletes came about because I couldn't find your posts when we hit almost 10,000 posts. I need you to post the numbers of your posts or just submit another copy of them to learning records, so that I can post them on the site for your future access. This was a computer glitch that occurred when we had to use Yahoo for our listserv. Please don't give me a printed version. I can't possibly retype those. From learning records, I can cut and paste them to our learning records. jeanne January 25, 2006.

  • Learning Records, Fall 2005:

  • New Office

    Our office is across the hall from where we used to be, SBS -B325. They moved us out of SBS B326 during the last week of classes, while I was having a reaction to the radiation therapy. All our stuff got moved across the hall, but it's in no condition for immediate use. We hope to get moved in by late January. jeanne

  • Syllabi for Spring 2006

    Syllabus for Sociology 395_01: No Child Left Behind Undergraduate Section. In Room SAC 3162, in the Old High School Buildings parallel to the Gym buildings.

    Syllabus for Sociology 395_01: No Child Left Behind Graduate Section. In Room SBS F121. Consult the undergraduate syllabus. Will get this up by Friday, February 3, 2006. jeanne

  • Sites You Might Want to Check Out:

    http://www.quackwatch.org/index.html Quackwatch, a website maintained by Stephen Barrett, M.D.

    "Quackwatch, Inc. . . . is a nonprofit corporation whose purpose is to combat health-related frauds, myths, fads, and fallacies. Its primary focus is on quackery-related information that is difficult or impossible to get elsewhere. Founded by Dr. Stephen Barrett in 1969 as the Lehigh Valley Committee Against Health Fraud, it was incorporated in 1970. In 1997, it assumed its current name and began developing a worldwide network of volunteers and expert advisors. . . . "

  • Call for Papers
    Casazine - Online Magazine for members of Casa. "CASA offers a platform for people to discuss and combine efforts and information working towards social transformation. For more information on CASA 2005 Borders, Markets, Movements and to find out about the summer meeting CASA 2006: Constructing Social Change go to http://www.casa.manifestor.org/." Jeanne joined this group a couple of years ago, though she couldn't make their summer meeting. I think our goals fit. Some of you should consider following this. I think their summer meeting this year might be in Montreal. Check out the site. Contribute a paper to CASAZINE.

  • Conference in June 2006

    Please check out the proposal I submitted on Christmas Eve. If you want to go, we need to start thinking about money NOW!

  • The Ecstasy Exhibit at the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art through February 20. Just a few weeks left. jeanne
    "Ecstasy" is the trippy, messy, highly entertaining survey put together by Paul Schimmel of the Museum of Contemporary Art here. It sprawls through the Geffen Contemporary, the museum's cavernous warehouse in Little Tokyo, which too often begs for attention but is now jammed with blissed-out mobs.

    Visual Sociology

      One of jeanne's versions of rage over the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.

      jeanne's drawing a Japanese Goddes (1800 - 400 B.C.) in a Seattle Art Museum. Japanese Goddess
      Seattle Art Museum

      NYTimes art work on Feminist Choice.

      Love Doesn't Conquer All;
      Neither Does War
      And What Shall I Say to the Other Who Will Not Listen? (Bakhtin)

      Bakhtin would say that to "not listen" is to deny answerability. We know that suppressed feelings will out, in

  • Lectures, Notes, and Texts

  • Lectures

  • Self Tests Lecture notes with self tests on the substantive concepts discussed. These are not a "substitute" for actual lectures in class or workshops, but I have tried to cover the main concepts so that absence from class will not critically deprive you of the substance of our discussions. The tests are for your own understanding of how well you have grasped the concepts. If you are confused, please make sure you clarify the concepts with jeanne when she is available in the office.

    Index of Theory and Application Lectures in Chronological Order, Spring 2006

  • SquiggleMentoring

    Preparing for Graduate Study:

  • Test Prep Preview Joshua L. Stewart, recommended this site because it has free practice tests. If you're thinking of taking the GRE, the LAST, or any other graduate entry test, this might be a good place to gather some early information. Joshua suggested it for Praxis Practice, but a quick first look suggests they don't mean by praxis what we do. Check it out, anyway, if you have some spare time. jeanne

  • SquiggleResource Literacy

    • Urban Legends Reference Pages. They post rumors and scams and phony e-mails circulating, to offer you a quick check. It worked for me. I entered "Fat Boy" as a google seacrch, and when I saw the Snopes.com link, I knew it would help, and it did. To not check your sources is as grievous as to plagiarize someone else's information and writing. A Page from Urban Legends As an Example.

    • the-artists.org Good quick reference site with many of the artists, art schools, and visual approaches to present social issue that we discuss. Added April 8, 2005.

    • Plagiarism Watch www.streetgangs.com site. The intelligent and effective use of resources means that you have to be careful not to plagiarize other people's material. We have several files on plagiarism, but I think the one that might make the most sense to you is this complaint on streetgangs.com. They give you samples of sites that have taken their material without citation, even at colleges, and they also give you examples of sites that have used their material with proper attribution. I find the irony poetic, and hope that their message will get through to you the importance of attribution. Dr. O'Connor on his Mega Criminal Justice site led me to streetgangs.com and noted that others frequently hack into the site. For that reason I have created a backup copy for your use in case you cannot access the actual site. Please be sure to attribute any citation to streetgangs.com. jeanne Backup.

      You might want to consider also the information on Dr.Woo Suk Hwang of South Korea:

      "Therapeutic Cloning Was a Fraud"
      By Hsien Hsien Lei, PhD | Related entries in Genetic Engineering

      One of the year’s biggest stories in bioscience appears to have been make-believe. In May, scientists in South Korea announced they’d been able to clone eleven embryonic stem cell lines containing the DNA of patients who suffered from diseases such as Parkinson’s, diabetes, and spinal cord injury. The hope was that the cloned stem cells could be used therapeutically via transplantation without fear of rejection.

      Now Dr. Woo Suk Hwang has admitted to fabricating the results. Nine of the 11 colonies of stem cells featured in the study published in the journal Science apparently don’t exist and the other two may not have been real either. The researchers involved have asked Science to retract their paper." From geneticsandhealth.com, consulted on December 26, 2005.

    Using Academic Language Effectively

    Merriam-Webster Dictionary Search:

    and Careers

    • Resumes:

    • Letters of Recommendation:

      • Letters of Recommendation: How to get me to respond to your request. Many of you need letters. If you will follow this format, I can do them quickly and make them good.
      • Dog Letters If you do not give me adequate information, but do manage to get my attention, you may end up with a dog letter. That is a letter that says that you work well with people, that you are enthusiastic, that you persist at getting things done, and that everyone likes you. Of course, my dog gets along well with people, brings his ball to them, is enthusiastic, and persists at getting them to take his ball. Everyone likes my dog. That's a dog letter. It's so general it could be about my dog. jeanne

    • Career Options You Might Not Have Considered

      • visual media and their interdependence with other means of knowing to understand that we are not totally rational creatures deciding things apart from our feelings and values. Wolfowitz (new President of the World Bank to aid developing countries AND principle advocate of the Iraq War) might feel very differently when he is exposed to visual and aural images of the poor developing countries that have not before been his primary concern. So we want to know how best to present those developing countries visually. And we might find that we can have a career doing that sort of thing, so it does reflect on us as individuals. Added April 2, 2005.

    That Was Fun! Sneaky Strokes and Flying Good Dogs

    Flying Dog is also a painting by Zhang Kai. Best I've ever come across to illustrate our site with magic numbers and unicorns and whipped cream cats and now, flying dogs, oh, and Faupel's Flying Fish.:

    • Icons and acronyms and what they mean in Internet Speak

    • Index of Nice Things We've Said to Each Other

      • I Was Scared of Statistics

      • It Feels Good to Make a Difference

      • The Site Goes On - You're Always Welcome Back
        • From Angelique Hawley on December 16, 2005: Message No. 9072 on transform_dom.
          Merry Christmas! Jeannne and Pat and all the marvelous students at CSUDH that has shared in "Naked Space"

          I wish I had a lot of money so that I could reward all of you properly. Transform_domDigest is so wonderful.

          I can recall when being one of the first users in 2004 and I see we are at digest 594. my how time flies when we are learning and having fun.

          Jeanne you and Pat are the bomb!

          I continue to read the digest although I am not taking any of your classes now. The digests have been more informative than the school paper. Please continue to keep it going.

          Get rest ! I hope to see you .

    • Flying Good Dogs: Whenever something happens in this or any other class that works out well, that inspires you, that helps in studying, whatever, take a few minutes to send us an e-mail. We'll post it where all of us can learn from it, including other teachers.