The Blogora: The Rhetoric Society of America



Submitted by Anonymous on October 24, 2005 - 5:00pm



The Rhetoric of Food and Wine

Submitted by Jim Aune on October 23, 2005 - 5:37pm

WASHINGTON, Oct. 23 -- The RNC issued the following statement from Communications Director Brian Jones in response to Howard Dean's comments today on ABC's This Week: "Howard Dean today, as leader of the Merlot Democrats, displayed a troubling unwillingness and inability to acknowledge the real progress occurring in Iraq. Chairman Dean's criticism of an election where Iraqis turned out in record numbers to approve a constitution, illustrates that many in the Democrat party are still focused on pessimism and defeatism when it comes to advancing freedom in the Middle East and winning the War on Terror. Continually explaining what you are against and tossing out negative attacks is not an agenda, despite Chairman Dean's claims." from (the left-wing equivalent of the Drudge Report, if you haven't checked it out yet). Merlot Democrats? I'm reminded of when Professor Cloud at UT-Austin was depicted as "sipping her latte" by another right-wing tropemeister. This is a kind of Bourdieu moment: consumption=taste=a mark of cultural distinction=status="class" in a society with no language for class conflict. . .


WSIS issues

Submitted by Jim Aune on October 22, 2005 - 6:16pm

In November 2005, the United Nations World Summit on the Information Society will meet for the last time in Tunis. In its five year history, the WSIS has failed to succeed in redressing the North-South "digital divide". Consensus in the WSIS has been elusive: the private and public sectors hold diametrically opposing views on issues such as market fundamentalism, free and open-source software, and intellectual property rights reform; while on issues of financing and internet governance, agreement between governments has been split along North-South lines. It remains to be seen whether civil society groups participating in the summit will be able to shift attention away from these competing interests towards human rights issues. More here:



Submitted by Anonymous on October 21, 2005 - 11:01pm

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National Review's Editors Ask for Withdrawal of Miers' Nomination

Submitted by Jim Aune on October 21, 2005 - 10:50pm

Life in the Empire gets stranger every minute: If "message discipline" has completely broken down on the Right, is it possible that they know more than the rest of us do about lawbreaking in the White House? I heard from a friend of mine today that Walter Cronkite has proposed that the Democrats need to have a midterm convention of sorts to develop a new "Contract with America" a la Gingrich's in '94. Interesting thought, although I suspect that, like the Republicans, the Beltway Democrats are too out of touch with their more radical antiwar base to come up with anything substantive. Come on rhetoricians, what are your top five strategic recommendations for the Dems?


Fitzgerald's Website

Submitted by Jim Aune on October 21, 2005 - 10:41pm

This should be interesting to watch in the coming days. Fitzgerald's term ends next Friday.


A questionnaire Harriet Miers could answer. . . .

Submitted by Jim Aune on October 21, 2005 - 10:43am

From Dahlia Lithwick at Slate: 1. Who is the bestest, smartest, coolest president ever? 2. Please provide the names, addresses, and telephone numbers of everyone with whom you have never discussed Roe v. Wade. 3. True or False: Barbara and Jenna totally don't appreciate how cool their mom and dad are. 4. Is it correct for a comma to appear before a coordinating conjunction linking the parts of a compound predicate? 5. You have named Chief Justice Warren Burger as one of your favorite Supreme Court justices. Is it his devastating intellect, his soaring writing style, or his evenhanded administration of the court that you most admire? Where do Charles Whittaker and James McReynolds rank among your Top 10 Justices? 6. When you wrote "Dates Not Available" next to most of the events at which you gave speeches throughout your career, did you mean that you were unable to recall the dates of the events, or that Justice Nathan Hecht was stepping out with Priscilla Owen that night? 7. Best bowling score ever? 8. If Jesus and President Bush got into a fight, who would win? 9. Please name any state Bar Associations from which you have yet to be suspended.


Yet Another Reason to Eliminate the Concept of "Hostile Environment"

Submitted by Jim Aune on October 21, 2005 - 10:37am


A Case for Bringing the Troops Home Now

Submitted by Jim Aune on October 20, 2005 - 7:15pm

I still don't agree (yet), but Juan Cole makes the best case I've read for immediate withdrawal: why-we-have-to-get-troops-out-of-iraq.html (I'm sorry I keep breaking up these long URL's, but I'm still finding my way around the new Drupal program we're using). Oh, and Nick Aune got straight A's in ninth grade this quarter. And he keeps getting recruiting postcards from the various armed forces. Sometimes autism feels like a blessing.


The Poem Greg Clark Read at Wayne Booth's Interment This Week

Submitted by Jim Aune on October 20, 2005 - 7:09pm

I Think Continually Of Those Who Were Truly Great Stephen Spender I think continually of those who were truly great. Who, from the womb, remembered the soul's history Through corridors of light where the hours are suns Endless and singing. Whose lovely ambition Was that their lips, still touched with fire, Should tell of the Spirit clothed from head to foot in song. And who hoarded from the Spring branches The desires falling across their bodies like blossoms. What is precious is never to forget The essential delight of the blood drawn from ageless springs Breaking through rocks in worlds before our earth. Never to deny its pleasure in the morning simple light Nor its grave evening demand for love. Never to allow gradually the traffic to smother With noise and fog the flowering of the spirit. Near the snow, near the sun, in the highest fields See how these names are frosted by the waving grass And by the streamers of white cloud And whispers of wind in the listening sky. The names of those who in their lives fought for life Who wore at their hearts the fire's center. Born of the sun they traveled a short while towards the sun, And left the vivid air signed with their honor.