The Headless Horseman Feeds Us Green Eggs and Spam
The beginning of term message from OurLeader is now on UTube. We were spammed Tuesday on the first day of classes. At least they are learning something, as the last time greeting Spam was cut was about a month after classes started.
At least three of my friends sent me a link hoping to incite me to riot on this latest public relations stunt. They succeeded. The contents of this video are appalling.
First we are treated to what one of my friends describes as the headless horseman. No doubt those Driven to Discover dudes are attempting artsy disclosure here, but it comes off as an amateurish job where OurLeader seems to have been decapitated.
For the next part of the video we are treated to watching OurLeader riding around in circles by himself. Once again, art imitates life.
OurLeader then proceedes to show us either mockups or partially constructed new buildings for much of the video and brags about the large amount of money raised for research.
Notice the ghostly outlines of people early in the video.
Are these students who chose a higher-ranking university?
Also included is a picture of a wind-turbine. This is odd because the only wind-turbine I know about is in Morris. OurLeader might want to consult the President of the University of Minnesota, Morris, for help in implementing his green plans. I understand she has testified before Congress earlier this year on the matter. Maybe BigU could learn something from Morris?
Last I heard we had a steam generation plant running on fossil fuel. I got in a little skirmish over this earlier in the year.
An amazing claim is made that can be seen in the caption to the picture below:
Now this is typical of administrative propaganda. What exactly does this mean? Judged by whom? Does it mean we'd like to be green or we talk about being green? Do we try to stimulate the green ethic on campus?
From OurLeaders talk, one might think that we were one of the leading centers of university green activity on the planet. Not so. Our Purdue colleagues certainly seem to have a little better handle on all of this. Maybe we could learn something from them?
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - Discovery Park will promote a series of events during Purdue University's Green Week designed to spark discussion on the role climate change, the environment and alternative energy researchers can play to solve the global energy problem.
Several guest lectures, organized by the Energy Center, Center for the Environment and the Purdue Climate Change Research Center, are planned for Sept. 19 from 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., followed by a town hall forum from 2:30-4 p.m. Purdue's Green Week runs from Sept. 15-19.
"We cannot address the grand challenges of environment and climate change in a silo. Global energy needs must enter the discussion," said event organizer John Bickham, director of the Center for Environment and professor of forestry and natural resources. "These Purdue centers are now focused on how these challenges converge."
The events, which will be in Purdue's Stewart Center, are free and open to the public. The lineup for Sept. 19 includes talks by:
* James Hurrell, senior scientist and director of the National Center for Atmospheric Research, from 8-9 a.m. in Room 218-AB. A Purdue graduate, Hurrell leads the center's Climate and Global Dynamics Division, which partners with universities and researchers to explore the atmosphere and its relationship with the sun, oceans, the biosphere and humans.
* David Hawkins, director of climate programs at the National Resources Defense Council, from 9-10 a.m. in Room 218-AB. An expert on coal technology and carbon capture and storage, he has spent three decades with the National Resources Defense Council researching clean air, energy and now climate change. He served with the Environmental Protection Agency as assistant administrator for Air, Noise and Radiation in President Carter's administration from 1977-81.
* Eugene Brower, former mayor of North Slope Borough, Alaska, from 10:30-11:30 a.m. in Room 218-AB. Brower was born in Barrow, Alaska, grew up living a subsistence-based lifestyle and has been a whaler for 50 years. He is now president of the Barrow Whaling Captains' Association.
* John Wall, a top executive at Columbus, Ind.-based engines and power generation systems manufacturer Cummins Inc., from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in Room 218-AB. Wall, a graduate in mechanical engineering from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, joined Cummins in 1986 and now serves as the company's vice president and chief technical officer. He also is an expert in engine technology and the effects of diesel fuel on exhaust emissions.
The town forum, which runs from 2:30-4 p.m. in Stewart Center's Fowler Hall, will include a summary of findings from the day's discussion and a question-and-answer session with several panelists from the morning lectures.
A poster session and reception, scheduled from 4-6:30 p.m. Sept. 18, is open to students, researchers and others from across campus and the community. Awards will be presented in three divisions: undergraduate, graduate and a category open to the entire community.
The Green Week activities on Sept. 18 and 19 are themed "Hot, Flat and Crowded: A Discussion - Research at the Intersection of Climate, Environment and Energy Technologies," in connection with the new book by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and author Thomas Friedman.
Green Week will culminate with a talk by Friedman at 7 p.m. Sept. 19 in the Elliott Hall of Music. Tickets, which are free but required for his talk, are available at Elliott Hall. Friedman's new book, "Hot, Flat, and Crowded: Why We Need a Green Revolution - and How It Can Renew America," will be released Monday (Sept. 8), and a book signing at Purdue is planned.
Green Week is being organized by the College of Engineering, including its Division of Environmental and Ecological Engineering, Global Engineering Program, as well as the School of Mechanical Engineering, the Center for the Environment, Energy Center, Office of the Provost and the Purdue Climate Change Research Center.
Maybe we could use a little of that Driven to Discover money to do something like this at the U of M? Or use some of the five million dollars that has already been sunk into MoreU Park (aka Muscoplat's Folly)? Town Hall forums, campus wide discussion, conversations - aren't these a good thing, Tom? Bob?
So have a nice term, Bob. I hope you have lots of time for doing the things you apparently enjoy - like riding around in circles.
(Don't forget: "Raise that tuition, dig that gravel, buy that Coke, push that credit card, sell that soul..." )