Monday, July 21, 2008

Jill gets a response.

Jill Rodde, (the other frequent author of this blog) is a great author (as you no doubt noted) and a good friend of mine. This is why I am happy to congratulate her on a feat most of us, writing on the web, can only hope to achieve.

Frequently, we write about policy, opinions, paradigms, news and rarely hope to get a response beyond our own regular readers. Jill managed more than that. David F. Bedey, conservative author and professor at West Point spent the entirety of his monthly column responding to Jill's response to his post from last month.

Quick Recap. David F. Bedey wrote this article about the problems with "liberal" colleges and universities because they have caused students to be unable to realize how silly "hope" is.

Jill responded to the article with this post on Free Exchange on Campus. To paraphrase: She pointed out that there are entire fields that are about challenging established paradigms (contrary to Bedey's claim) and that many of us have had professors (even at Carleton) whose political affiliations are well hidden behind very real apolitical research attitudes.

Then today, Bedey used his monthly column to respond to Jill. How did he do? AWFULLY.

Jill owned him. He spends his entire first non-introductory paragraph attacking the organization that hosted Jill's post. Obviously engaging the issues at hand.

Then, he continues to argue that Jill didn't do a holistic study of colleges and classes to attack his points. She wrote a 475 word post! Are you serious? More to the point small data set studies are used all the time. She mentions Carleton and Carleton anecdotes three of four times in the post. She was obviously providing a compelling counter example to Bedey's broad claim. Carleton is a well-known liberal campus which exhibits characteristics that Bedey would associate with liberal academe and a "failure of higher education." Yet, Jill points out several examples from her own experiences on campus which seem to counter Bedey.

David Bedey, you got owned by Jill Rodde. Join the Club.

P.S. In case he (Bedey) is reading this, this post was not meant to thoroughly argue the points, nor was it an academic paper for the purposes of debate nor thorough reasoning so don't treat it as such...having said that, I think I owned you too.

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