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Clarissa's Blog

An academic's opinions on feminism, politics, literature, philosophy, teaching, academia, and a lot more.

The Cost of Fluidity 

N’s conference costs $800, and it’s just membership and registration. Food and lodging and airfare are on top of that. Plus, he’s losing pay on the days that he’s there because his company is not covering it. And they are not covering it because they don’t want to lose him. He’s already over qualified for them, and this kind of conference widens the gap.

But he has to be paying these costs not only because he enjoys this kind of conference a lot but because that’s how one keeps oneself fluid. 

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The Last on Rauner Today, I Promise

Regarding what I say about Rauner as a person – and I’m not sure if I mentioned this before – I know people who hang out with him. I wouldn’t say they are friends but, rather, friendly acquaintances. Republicans, totally in love with him and his policies (while working for a public institution and suffering for lack of healthcare, by the way, so go figure.) And even they recognize that the fellow is beyond lazy. 

Immigration Craziness 

On a practical note, if customs agents are checking immigration papers on domestic flights, will a driver’s license be enough?

I’m now worried because N always – and very aggravatingly – leaves his green card at home when he travels. He’s afraid of losing it. I, on the other hand, always lug around both the green card and the passport. What’s the point of having them if I’m not using them? 

As for customs agents, I’ve had a lot of contact with them over the years, and they tend to be a very aggrieved, nervous bunch with very little interest in what’s legal and what’s not. 

Do Your Job!

Just watched a news report on the town hall meeting with Tom Cotton. Seeing the people chant “Do your job!” was amazing. We really need to do something like this to Rauner. I understand that he’s a Republican and the people voted for him to do his Republican thing. It’s the will of the people, and I accept that. It’s his complete refusal to do a lick of work because he prefers to throw parties and go from one “charity” dinner to another that bugs me. He’s not promoting any Republican goals. He’s not promoting any goals. He parties and parties and parties some more. 

Typology of Leftism

There are two general types of leftism:

1. The old-fashioned class consciousness / class solidarity leftism. The response to issues is based on asking, “Is there a class conflict here? Is anybody getting exploited?”

2. The consumerist leftism. The response to issues is based on asking, “Are any individual choices being thwarted here? Are any individuals prevented from doing what they want to do?” 

I’m obviously in group 1 and feel sad that it’s so successfully marginalized by group 2. 

Nuts

Lord Christ, even the Spanish press is featuring stories about this Milo Shitopoulos or whatever he’s called. 

People are legitimately and apologetically nuts. 

Anti-consumerism

A representative of Spain’s Podemos said, a propos surrogacy, “Not every desire should turn into a right.” I’m extremely impressed because that’s a direct challenge to consumerism. Will I live to see the day when a progressive party will arise here that will be ready to reject consumerism as an almost religious experience and the greatest good?

Spain Is Great

A debate is going on in Spain about legalizing surrogate motherhood. Shockingly, the leftist parties are not unanimously in favor of placing consumerism above all and legalizing it. This is a welcome surprise because here in the US I’ve never seen anybody on the Left with any interest in questioning consumerism as the highest good. 

As usual, I 😍 Spain.

Left Behind 

N has left for a conference. As usual, his professional community is smarter than mine and is holding the conference on a beach in Florida. Academics are too mean-spirited to hold conferences anywhere where people might enjoy the sun and the ocean. People in the industry, on the other hand, don’t mind enjoying life and letting colleagues do the same. 

This is the first time I’m left to take care of Klara on my own. 

Service

This is what I don’t get. How come I’m doing a lot more service – and I mean A LOT – now that I have tenure than while being on the tenure track? I’m drowning in service, it’s insane. 

Nobody is making me. I always got the highest marks for service even when I did very little. (I’m Soviet, I can bullshit like nobody’s business). I’m not going for an early Full Professorship  (for reasons of my own that I can reveal in a separate post). I’m not avoiding research because I’m writing an article and it’s going great. 

The only thing I can think of is that I’m overcompansating for having a baby. Which is dumb because nobody cares. And if they did, I’d never notice anyway. 

I need to stop this because it’s eating me alive. 

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