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Swarthmore in the NewsApril 1, 2011

The Delaware County Daily Times (PA)

Reverend Billy Comes to Swarthmore

Times Staff

April 1, 2011

SWARTHMORE - Internationally renowned performers and activists Reverend Billy and the Stop Shopping Gospel Choir will perform their Earthalujah show Saturday at 7 p.m. at the Lang Performing Arts Center at Swarthmore College.

The show somewhat resembles a church service with the pastor preaching for healthy environments, strong local communities, and the decline of corporate power. The show mixes music and preaching, and audience engagement.

Bill Talen invented the "Reverend Billy" character in 1996 as a way of re-appropriating the Elvis-hairstyled, hyperventilating televangelist shtick in the service of an entirely different, positive social message. Since beginning as a lone performer on the streets of Times Square, the Reverend Billy project has grown to include the Gospel choir, nationwide performance tours, and a major motion picture, "What Would Jesus Buy?"

Recently, he has been staging interventions in major banks across the country to protest the funding of mountaintop removal coal mining.

This event is free and open to the public without advance reservations.


WHYY -Radio Times

Making Sense of the Emerging "Obama Doctrine" and Libya

March 29, 2011

The morning after President Obama's prime-time speech about his decision to intervene militarily in Libya, we take stock of the emerging 'Obama doctrine' guiding U.S. foreign policy. Citing a controversial and new United Nations principle known as the "Responsibility to Protect," advocates for military intervention on humanitarian grounds succeeded in reversing the Obama administration's initial reluctance to get involved in a third military front in the Muslim world. Helping us make sense of the President's speech, his foreign policy and its implications for the Middle East are Swarthmore political scientist Dominic Tierney, Tom Malinowski of Human Rights Watch and Aaron David Miller of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. (more)


American Banker

Jail Execs Who 'Caused Crisis'? It's Complicated

By Heather Landy

March 28, 2011

Fat cat. Got away with murder. Knew it was a house of cards. Didn't warn. Outrageous risk. Made off with his bonus.

Samuel Buell can practically hear the key phrases of the government's opening argument, were it to bring a banker to court on criminal charges tied to the financial crisis.

It's a good script, one "that might win you the first day of the trial," said Buell, who was the lead prosecutor on the Justice Department's Enron task force. But then he envisions what happens in the weeks, or months, that follow. Jurors, bogged down by the complexities of the situation they are being asked to weigh, distance their minds from the raw emotions that the case might have aroused at first. Indignation over what appears to have been a massive fraud gets replaced with incredulity, as the jury wonders if it could have been fraud when the entire financial system seemed in on the alleged deception.

...The Securities and Exchange Commission has notified Daniel Mudd, a former chief executive of Fannie Mae, and Richard Syron, a former CEO of Freddie Mac, that enforcement actions against them are in the works. And the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. has sued Kerry Killinger and two other former executives of the failed Washington Mutual Bank, alleging gross negligence and breaches of fiduciary duty.

None of that is likely to appease an angry populace hungry for a criminal prosecution, however.

"I think the public suspects, probably rightly, that these people are close to invulnerable, in that you couldn't extract enough of a civil penalty to actually make a difference in the way they live their lives," said Barry Schwartz, a professor of social theory and social action in the psychology department at Swarthmore College.

Inflicting pain on those deemed responsible for a problem, Schwartz said, can be a way of validating the feelings of blame that arise from efforts to engage in causal analysis, which is the way people typically try to comfort themselves when they want to feel the world is a more predictable, controllable place. ...


The Star-Ledger (Newark, NJ)

The Very Model of a Modern Military Man Stephen Lang's Built a Career Playing Soldier: Historic, Contemporary and even Space-age

Stephen Whitty, Star-Ledger Staff

March 27, 2011

'Some actors are hired to play themselves, and that's fine," says Stephen Lang. "But I've always been asked to play a role. I've never been asked to play Stephen Lang."

And any regular movie fan can understand that.

In real life, Stephen Lang is a fit, funny, 58-year-old intellectual who got an English degree from a good college, built a solid career and has been happily married for more than 30 years.

Not exactly the stuff of Hollywood melodramas.

On the screen, though, Stephen Lang is a chameleonlike actor who excels at driven, Type A characters. He was Stonewall Jackson in "Gods and Generals." He was the cool Texas Ranger in "Public Enemies." He was the gung-ho Col. Quaritch in "Avatar."

There's something there -- a steely alertness, perhaps -- that makes him the movies' go-to guy for military types. In the new "White Irish Drinkers," though, he plays a different kind of leader -- the damaged, drunken, angry patriarch of a poor family in '70s Brooklyn.  ...

Lang had started pushing at that door as soon as he graduated from Swarthmore College. He began a long relationship with the Actors Studio, and racked up parts in New York and around the country, doing "A Streetcar Named Desire" and "Death of a Salesman" and originating the role of Col. Jessup in "A Few Good Men." (more)

Women from Historic Student Civil Rights Group Tell Their Story

By Reginald Stuart

 March 28, 2011

When Judy Richardson was navigating her way through her freshman year at Swarthmore College in Pennsylvania, she got distracted from her full-ride, four-year scholarship by efforts to force the school to boost the wages of its all-Black cafeteria staff. She joined the campaign to help the workers.

Pretty soon, it was on to another battle for "justice" in Cambridge, Md., where Blacks were protesting the city's racially segregated facilities. Another battle followed. Before long, the Tarrytown, N.Y., native found herself in Mississippi working alongside the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee. It was the summer of 1964.

With her mother's reluctant blessing and despite her older sister's protests, a 19-year-old Richardson joined other students from across the nation to help end Mississippi's racist segregation laws. ...

Richardson, now 66, is a documentary film producer and college lecturer, a co-producer of the award-winning "Eyes on the Prize" documentary about the civil rights movement and a producer of the recent film documentary, "Scared Justice: The Orangeburg (S.C.) Massacre 1968." She also is reveling in the success of a new book of personal essays she and friends from the movement have written about their experiences and those of dozens of other rank-and-file women of SNCC.

Published by the University of Illinois Press last September, Hands on the Freedom Plow, Personal Accounts by Women in SNCC, has sold approximately 4,000 copies and is in its fourth printing. (more)


The Philadelphia Inquirer

Philadelphia flavor in Arkansas arts fete

March 27, 2011

The second annual Artosphere, Arkansas' six-week arts and nature festival, will have a distinct Philadelphia-area flavor.

Andrea Packard, director of the List Gallery at Swarthmore College, will present her artwork during the opening ceremony on Green Day, April 22. She also will discuss a visual arts exhibition, Garden as Muse.

...Artosphere, which drew more than 15,000 people last year, focuses on the unique way the arts connect with nature and living sustainably through all forms, including music, theater, dance, visual arts, and lectures. Events are sprinkled around the northwestern corner of the state, in settings ranging from stages and auditoriums to bike paths and parks. ...



The Delaware County Daily Times

Weston Helps Swarthmore Cruise

March 28, 2011

Paul Weston took second in a field of 24 golfers as Swarthmore College (312) defeated Philadelphia University (342), Neumann (345) and Widener (375) Monday at Rolling Green Club.

Weston shot a 76, followed by Jeff Wall (78) and Sam White (78) on the scorecard. Philadelphia's Ryan O'Donnell shot a tournament-low 74.


The Delaware County Daily Times

College Sports: Weston leads Swarthmore to 2nd-place finish

March 27, 2011

Paul Weston fired an even-par 72 to finish in a three-way tie for first place and lead Swarthmore to a second-place finish in the McDaniel Spring Invitational golf tournament Sunday afternoon at the Bridges Golf Club near Gettysburg.

Weston finished the two-day event with a 6-over par 150. St. John Fisher shot 308 as a group in the final round to take the team title by five strokes over Swarthmore.

Jeff Wall finished in a tie for 13th place, while Kyle Knapp and Alex Nichmin tied for 19th for Swarthmore.