Dr. Drew's Infrequent Blog

08 March 2007

My First Podcast Interview (Call Me A Luddite)

The Interview will be Podcast

I just came across my first podcast interview. Wesley Fryer (Director of Education Advocacy, AT&T-OK; author of the Blog Moving at the Speed of Creativity) interviewed me in one of his weekly podcasts).

Podcast105: Thinking Critically About Library and School Technologies

Fryer was one of the keynote speakers at the 2006 Hawaii Library Association conference. At the start of the interview he mentions that someone in his audience critiqued his talk. "Creativity and Updating Mindware: Hardware and software are not holding us back!" for demonstrating a lot of tech toys, but offering little content. Not surprisingly, I was the critic. On the other hand I tried to balance my critique with praise of his mention of Neil Postman, an education theorist who wrote such influential and highly readable books Amusing Ourselves to Death and Technopoly. He seemed to take my comments in good spirit, and asked to interview me along with another keynote speaker, super-librarian Jessamyn West. I'm not sure how many people will ever listen to this podcast, but it was a pleasure to talk together about ALA and Postman.

Wesley apparently posted the interview in December. He later filed it under "luddite," so maybe I haven't been forgiven. Oh well, I've been called worse things.

That HLA conference was a great chance to dive into Web 2.0 for libraries, but I strongly believe that we need to think carefully about each technological shift and the impact of each decision on society. Wesley's talk was a perfect example. He was a master of communication technology, using Skype, webcams, video and other tools to capture the audience's attention. In my opinion, the problem is that his talk revealed that you can talk with people all over the world for an hour, but never really say much of substance. I certainly don't mind chatting with friends that way, but don't think it should be the future of education. I'm sure Postman would agree!

It reminded me of my friends who were amateur ("ham") radio enthusiasts years ago. They were always excited to could talk with people abroad, but their content was usually limited to the weather or what type of equipment they were using. To me, that got old very quickly, so I only listened to shortwave radio after that (like BBC World Service or Radio France Internationale). These broadcasts were not interactive, but I learned much more from them, and also enjoyed them much more.

The bigger issue obviously is not about how I spent my teenage years listening to shortwave radio, but that we need to reflect on this technological shift, and its socio-economic impact on our fragile democracy. This was very well expressed in Part 3 of the PBS Frontline documentary NEWSWAR, which you can watch online. Check it out!

End the War in Iraq

I've been busy just keeping up with everyday work these days, so I haven't passed on much political news in some time. Perhaps that might be best, but I can't keep some of the recent days news to myself any longer.

Let me start with the latest news on the Court Martial of Lt. Ehren Watada. Did you read that the Army has decided to retry him again even after the first judge declared a mistrial?! Watada's lawyer argued then that double jeopardy should protect him from a second trial, but the Army is ignoring that and plowing ahead with a second trial. We'll have to see if there really is a thing called military justice.

Cool Watada Poster

In other news, you doubtlessly have heard or read that:

US Defence Secretary Robert Gates has approved a request for an extra 2,200 military police to support the security drive in Iraq's capital, Baghdad. Speaking to Congress, Mr Gates said the deployment would be in addition to the nearly 24,000 combat troops and support personnel approved by President Bush.(quote from the BBC)

This is despite the Congressional elections, polls, and any common sense.

Since things are so bad, I feel a need to pass on parts of an e-mail newsletter from World Can't Wait/NION announcing the following events:

Wednesday, March 14, 11:30-1:15
Teach-In: "Impeach Bush for War Crimes" UH-Manoa Art Department Auditorium Sponsored by World Can't Wait and NION-Hawai`i
The teach-in will begin with a 27-minute DVD segment of testimony presented at the Bush Crimes Commission in NYC. Witnesses presenting testimony in the video include: Scott Ritter, former UN weapons inspector; Amy Bartholomew, professor of law, Carleton University; Larry Everest, author of Oil, Power & Empire; Dahr Jamail, independent journalist; Jeremy Scahill, writer for The Nation and former correspondent for Democracy Now!; Camilo Mejia, Iraq vet and member of Iraq Veterans Against the War; David Swanson, organizer of Camp Democracy; Dr. Thomas Fasy, Mt. Sinai School of Medicine and expert on depleted uranium. This is a powerful DVD that everyone should own. You can purchase a complete set of the DVDs at: Bush Commission for only $20. Or you can pick burned copies at the teach-in for $5.

The teach-in will feature a talk by Ann Wright (former State Dept diplomat and retired Army Reserve Colonel who resigned in opposition to the war in Iraq). Ann was a judge at the Bush Crimes Tribunal, as well as at other war crimes tribunals. She has met with hundreds of veterans of the Iraq War. Since the war in Iraq began she has been speaking at colleges, anti-war rallies, and churches, and is involved in building a grassroots movement to impeach. Check out her article "Blood Diamonds and Blood Oil" dated March 6, 2007 at: Ann Wright. "We're really privileged to have Ann speak at this teach-in at UH-Manoa! Don't miss it!

Make Lo'i Not War

End the War NOW Rally and March
Meet at Ala Moana Park (Diamond Head end across from Macy's)
Rally at 3pm; March begins at 4pm; Concert immediately after the march

It is crucial that we all join forces and make our voices heard on March 17th, the 4th anniversary of the war on Iraq. On February 15, 2003 millions of us marched against the war on Iraq. We failed to stop it, but we were a powerful international voice of opposition. And while time has proven just how illegal and unjust the war is, and the majority of people are now against it, the war is continuing and [Bush] is now threatening to attack Iran. Once again, we must hit the streets to demand an end to the war in Iraq NOW, and stop plans to attack Iran.

Other events:

Friday, March 9: 2nd in the Mililani Trask Symposium Series. Focuses on the history of the UN's Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Richardson School of Law. 4:30-8 pm. Free

Sunday, March 11: 3 pm. 2nd Sunday at Revolution Books.
Special guest author/speaker: Monisha DasGupta
Monisha will speak on her newly published book: Unruly Immigrants: Rights, Activism, and Transnational South Asian Politics in the United States. Monisha teaches in Ethnic Studies and Women's Studies and is also active in the struggle for immigrant rights and against the war. For more info: 944-3106

Sunday, March 11: 4 pm. Lecture by Sister Helen Prejean
Mystic Rose Chapel, Chaminade University
A free public lecture by Sister Helen Prejean the outspoken death-penalty opponent and author of Dead Man Walking.

Tuesday, March 13 Talk by Ann Wright at Windward Community College
An event Celebrating Women's History Month at Windward Community College WCC, Room 107, 12:40 pm
Talk by Ann Wright on her opposition to the Iraq war, and and her resignation from her position as a U.S. State Dept diplomat in 2003.

Wednesday, March 14, 11:30 am.
Impeach Bush for War Crimes
Teach-in at UH-Manoa Art Department Auditorium, featuring special guest Ann Wright.

Friday, March 16, 4:30-6pm
Signholding at the Federal Building

Friday, March 16: 3rd in the Mililani Trask Symposium Series
"Racism in United States Jurisprudence."
William S. Richardson School of Law, 4:30-8pm. Free.

Saturday, March 17: March and Rally at Ala Moana Park:
Rally at Picnic Area #1 (across from Macy's) at 3 pm; permitted street march begins at 4pm; concert/rally at Ala Moana Park immediately following the march. Call 534-CALL for information.

Saturday, March 17: Media Justice Conference sponsored by People's Fund.
9am to 4pm: Kapi`olani Community College, Ohi`a Building (cafeteria). Registration begins at 8:30 am; $15 advanced; $20 at the door. A conference to increase awareness of media justice, to understand local challenges, and provide opportunities for networking. For more info e-mail or call 845-4800.

Saturday, March 17: Youth Speaks Hawai`i Grand Slam Final 2007
Kaimuki HS Auditorium, 6 pm; $5 youth; $7 general
20+ poets will compete to be among the 6 who will represent Hawai`i in San Francisco

Sunday, March 18, 2pm Kamau, a play by Alani Apio
Kumu Kahua Theatre, 46 Merchant Street, $25
(a fundraiser for The People's Fund)
A complex and poignant story of tradition, change and land development centered around Hawai`i. Panel and audience discussion follows with playwright Alani Apio, director Harry Wong and UH Hawaiian Studies professor Jonathan Kamakawiwo`ole Osorio. Regular performances start Thur 3/15. Runs through Sun 4/15).

Friday, March 23, 7 pm: "The United States vs. George W. Bush et al.
First Unitarian Church (2500 Pali Hwy)
A performance of retired Federal Prosecutor, Elizabeth de la Vega's mock Grand Jury indictment of George W. Bush et al. Featuring a terse dialog between prosecutor and witnesses, with prominent local actors reading the parts of this courtroom drama. The first 20 people in the house will become mock Jurists and may even have a dialog as a part of the performance. No admission and free parking, but because there's limited seating you should make your reservations by e-mail (uuchurch@hawaii.rr.com). For more info phone 347-3249.

Respecting Native Culture and Sovereignty (at the University of Arizona)

UA Ethics Roundtable Keynote Address to feature American Library Association President-elect Loriene Roy.

With President-Elect Roy

TUCSON - American Library Association President-elect Loriene Roy is coming to Tucson on Friday, March 23, to share her views on balancing the need for respect of native cultural property and traditions with intellectual freedom and the free flow of information. The event begins at 6:00 pm in The University of Arizona’s James E. Rogers College of Law Auditorium. There is no charge, and the public is encouraged to attend both the talk and a reception immediately following.

Today’s information explosion fueled by the Web and other information technologies has highlighted longstanding struggles over who owns and controls the knowledge, art, medicine, artifacts and traditions of native cultures and the world’s indigenous populations. The social, political, legal and ethical concerns affect a broad spectrum of professions including librarians, journalists, anthropologists, authors and publishers, health industry professionals and artists, to name a few.

Roy will draw on her own background as both a librarian and American Indian in order to focus on the need to respect tribal sovereignty and respect and observe intellectual and cultural property rights within a framework of intellectual freedom and access to information. Roy’s talk is the featured keynote address of the 2007 Information Ethics Roundtable to be held on the campus of The University of Arizona March 23-25. The Roundtable’s theme this year is Indigenous Knowledge and Cultural Property: The Ethics of Cultural and Environmental Sovereignty and Stewardship.

Roy, enrolled on the White Earth Reservation, a member of the Minnesota Chippewa Tribe, is professor at the School of Information and also the Center for Women’s and Gender Studies at the University of Texas at Austin. She works tirelessly to promote library services and cultural heritage programs nationally. Roy is instrumental in developing and promoting library services and cultural heritage initiatives with and for native populations. She directs a national reading club for Native children and manages a federal grant-funded scholarship program for indigenous students. She will be inaugurated as President of the American Library Association this coming June. Roy received her master’s degree in library and Information Science from The University of Arizona in 1980 before pursuing her doctorate from The University of Illinois, Urbana. Roy was named UA Outstanding SIRLS Alumna in 2002.

This year’s Ethics Roundtable has been organized in consultation with The Native Nations Institute for Leadership, Management, and Policy, Research Group on the History and Philosophy of Information Access, and The University of Arizona School of Information Resources and Library Science. It is supported by funds from the Morris K. Udall Foundation and the School of Information Resources and Library Science. Additional funding for Roy’s reception is courtesy of the Arizona Library Association. The James E. Rogers College of Law Auditorium is located at 1201 E. Speedway in room 146. For more information about the Information Ethics Roundtable,
visit http://sir.arizona.edu/ier/ or call 520-621-5219.

Contact: Kay Mathiesen, University of Arizona School of Information Resources and Library Science
Phone: 520-621-5219 Web: http://sir.arizona.edu/ier/