Feb 14, 2023Liked by Eddie Speir

Last night I overheard Chris Rock passionately complain to Judd Aptow that Woke is a religion. I thought-- Has he been reading Speir's Substack?!

I told him that people were trying to make this college an anti-woke school and he fatalistically said its never gonna happen! He said he saw the writing on the wall about college nonsense back in the 90s.

Normal outspoken people have a very bad opinion of colleges - but you are up against a community in denial of how at least half the country thinks.

Its frustrating that they refuse to investigate just how much higher ed and K-12 have changed for the worse. We have not created a better educated population since the 60s-- we have done the reverse. College professors used to be among the most respected of profesions, now they are at the bottom along with used car salesmen. But those in academia refuse to take responsibility for this demotion.

Now the average American IQ has fallen below 100-- so below basic level. Average isn't even average anymore. This makes it all the more important to be focusing on common sense.

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Feb 10, 2023Liked by Eddie Speir

There are lawyers who will take your case of slander seriously. Try for example Morgan & Morgan who advertise that they take cases after review and get their profits from the proceeds of a win.

The most difficult attacks you will face will be against your family. Stand firm. I see your wife is standing firm. Much harm is brought about with innuendo and duplicitous intent both of which are being thrown at you “ to see what sticks” but Morgan and Morgan will be able to use law to see what sticks among the various charges brought against you.

I have experience but I never sued, for at the time I was too inexperienced to stand under the excruciating pressure. I woke one morning and found the St Pete Times headline on the front page “ Teaching Hate to Students” with a picture of me beneath the headlines. It was a school picture from my 10 years of National award winning teaching. What I noticed first - being a blond - was their “ art” or “ news” department had drawn my eyebrows sharp and black, which accomplished the goal of making me appear to be a witch. In short, I have experience with what you are experiencing and I know the feeling of hopelessness that can ensue.

I’m glad you are more of a fighter than I was in my 40’s! One last example. My father - when I was in the 7th grade - formed a committee and took on the illegal stuffing of ballot boxes that kept a criminal group in power in our little 10,000 person county in SW Georgia. Because a young investigative reporter in the Atlanta Journal got interested ( the Lieutenant Governor was from our town) the reporter worked with my father to get the word out as well as the criminals out. It was dangerous work and in an illegal gambling hall in a nearby county when Jack Nelson,the investigative reporter and my father Tom Davis entered “the joint” there on the wall were tiny “column photos”of a group of reporters to be wary of as a threat to business : Jack’s photo was among them. A bouncer wearing guns played on the jukebox “ Fools rush in where angels dare to tread” and he played it over and over. In short, It took real courage to face powerful evil in the early 1960’s. It still does.

The reporter became the DC Bureau chief of the LA Times. and it’s true that history repeats itself because the only column I’ve read that provided a balanced read about New College was written by the Atlanta bureau chief of the LA Times,where Jack Nelson worked. concerning the situation at New College the techniques of the fight has not changed. Here in Sarasota are being insinuated as a crook by a newspaper slur because you are local and easy fruit to pick, not a nationally known powerhouse like Rufo.

Furthermore, The student who did stand up to the university and support Rufo ( and also was quoted in the LA Times) lives with me. Jesse Hudson does not ever plan to desert the Western Canon and because of it he has been called (on Twitter and elsewhere) “ stupid, rube, baby, ignorant, behind the times, sexually repressed, “- anything at all that could denigrate him was repeated ad Infinitum. By strangers.

So here’s my point : since I have front-line experienced what you, your wife, and my student ( whom I am here in Bradenton driving to classes where he studies theoretical mathematics) are being forced to endure let me commend your courage.

It’s fun to watch movies where one honest man takes on Congress as a hero but when Mr Smith DOES go to Washington” such heroes with stalwart courage are portrayed as in Brave NEW World or 1984 in “newspeak” - war is peace; good is evil; courage is cowardice.” Were I teaching ( I’m always “ fired-up” to teach and always “fired” for it ) ... my first essay assignment would be define “Courage.” You do, Jesse Hudson does, Chris Rufo does, my father did. He was born in 1910 and knew an old man who at 12 seating latecomers in Ford Theatre, saw Lincoln assassinated; my father had his glasses broken when a county sheriff hit him in the face with the butt of the sheriff’s pistol; my father was the small town printer, the unknown Bed Franklin with the college degree from Purdue in the Western Heritage; my father was an embodiment of courage. Take heart, sir, because Tom Davis lived in peace to 99 years old.

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Old man yells at cloud

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This is a way too long post of a lot of whining, man up and move on. You sound like my teenager.

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Eddie, you seem incapable of actually writing an original thought. This whole pile of shit you wrote is one cliche and catch phrase after another. I think when he gets down to it, the fact that you attack anyone who hate your slimy guts as being mainstream media.. and it's sort of hilarious that you think that's an insult.. but basically anybody who doesn't like you is a bad person. Maybe you're just a fucking cunt?

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I guess $400,000 is only a little over half what the new New College president is getting, which is about $400,000 more than what the outgoing president had been getting.

It takes a lot of money to run a school, it looks like.

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Comments: pro or con, from harmless windbags or the seriously deranged, published or not, retracted or not, are no longer an issue for any of the USA TODAY affiliated "papers." Head office decided the flak, liability, and expense of moderation wasn't worth the time or money and totally removed the ability of its readers (both paid subscribers and, to a more limited extent, visitors) to respond publicly to its published articles, editorials, and to other readers' comments. To promote a "safe place," you know...

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This is what happens when thin-skinned people like Edward here can't handle seeing mean words on the screen and they complain a lot just to be annoying

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Mr Bicker. It was not a harmless windbag or seriously deranged nobody writing a letter to the editor who insinuated this gentleman’s wife had absconded with her friends 1/2 million dollars. I suppose such “ investigative reporting” was a reporter’s work , so the responsible party if you go after the power and money would be the head honcho CEO or oligarchical corporate owner, or board of directors. In this world - as The Panama Papers reveal a newspaper in a small Florida city might be part of a conglomerate owned by a Laundromat of various duplicitous scalawags well disguised behind something as free flowing as water - provided some stinging nettle like Nestles co-opted the bureaucracy.

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I was led to believe it was a comment rather than a letter to the editor causing all the ruckus. I would think the former are accepted (or at least not deleted) under a much looser standard than the scrutiny "official" letters to the editor undergo. At any rate, the public is no longer allowed to comment PUBLICLY on articles, editorials, or other comments and letters to the editor for any of the USA TODAY affiliated "papers." That is a huge loss to each community in which the local paper chooses to keep its readership divided, alone, and voiceless.

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Sir - could you specify what “ That” refers to in your “‘That’ is a huge loss” … specifically in terms of whether you are communicating the idea 1. having comments or 2. not having comments leads to a divided, voiceless readership?

Aren’t you “voiceless” if you have no chance to reply but “divided” if your replies as printed are contradictory one to the other?

The other issue - whether or not the attack on the trustee’s wife was a “ruckus” caused by 1. the general public or 2. a professional on staff at the newspaper that is not owned locally but like most is a chained part of a conglomerate with goals set by much more powerful moguls - I did not read the paper rather supposed them based on second handed reactions here.

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Feb 10, 2023·edited Feb 11, 2023

'That' refers to the recent loss of the ability of area readers to comment PUBLICLY (pro, con, or indifferent) on things published in the online version of their local "newspapers." While Letters to the Editor are still accepted, out of the many the paper receives only a select few (how selected?) are actually displayed on the website. Similarly, reporters have email addresses listed with their bylines and are presumably encouraged or required to at least peruse if not acknowledge reader responses received (as time allows, natch). However, since the dialog (if it exists at all) would be limited to just the reporter and their email interlocutor, it is therefore PRIVATE and thus unknowable by others either directly named or otherwise involved in the reportage or those simply interested in the topic, events, personalities, or the particular presentation of the material by the reporter (spin, bias, cheerleading, etc.). Thus voiceless.

The division occurs as the "community" of reader-commenters is fractured by the de facto destruction of the public square in favor of one-on-one private communications. I don't care about corporate ownership or the politics of editorial policy or individual reporter's agendas: those things are to be expected in today's media and adult readers are expected to be capable of making their own judgments about such matters. I DO care that those judgments are no longer able to be placed in public view of the general readership, the principals involved in the coverage, and the management of the media enterprise itself.

In my opinion, the closing of PUBLIC bi-directional mass media communication channels is akin to violation of Florida's "sunshine laws" requiring decisions affecting the public to be made in public. We, the readership of the USA TODAY affiliate papers, are no longer independent thinking members of the community actively engaged in its affairs: rather we are now children to be told only what our minders allow us to know.

That 'that'.

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Mr Bicker I quite enjoy the experience of point/counter point with you as we both have achieved sophisticated writing skills through education ( gladly by email share mine); we continue to disagree, however, I would rather take your points one by one by email rather than use this important Substack post to carry on a conversation valuable but not related to this trustee’s points.

Should you find value in such an extended conversation I will make a way to compose on email and continue this conversation. Thanks.

Meanwhile true action - such as the governor has taken to revamp New College - is light years ahead of our “ aftermath” of valid exegetical argumentation - even were it presented as a white paper in institutes designed for policy change.

This event of new trustees at New College IS policy change. If the public wishes to react something more significant than newspaper comments must be set in motion.

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