Archive | November, 2006

>George Bush or Fireman Sam?

>“You’re like George Bush” my wife says, as I sit behind my desk at home juggling phones and phone calls to finalize preparations for next week’s MA exam board. “You could probably sort out Iraq after doing that”, she adds when I finally put the phone back. After sorting a tangle of regulations, difficult resubmission cases and dispacthes of work for external examiners over the past few days I begin to feel I possibly could – or at least could have done if sitting in the Oval Office in spring 2003. Doubtless someone will make this possible by turn the whole tragic Iraq imbroglio into some kind of computer strategy game for aspirant politicians and planners, but – with apologies to neo-cons – my strategy would probably have been to sanitize and reform the Baathist state, keep some kind of secular nationalist ideology in being, aim for stability not democracy and then get out fast. Fortunately, fire fighting crises in academic administration is a lot less deadly and a lot less tragic and the stakes are rather lower. More Fireman Sam than Uncle Sam.