Open Thread for Thursday, December 11, 2014

Some possible topics:

1. Kappa Sigma eviction put on hold at USC — So as I understand it, this fraternity, which just came off a three-year double-secret probation, has been banned for five years because of “hazing, alcohol abuse and controlled-substance violations.” So, my big question is this: Isn’t that kinda what fraternities do? I don’t know; back in my college days Greek life was considered so monumentally uncool that I never considered it, and ran the other way the couple of times I was invited to a rush party. Followup question — if this isn’t what fraternities are for, then what are they for?

2. CIA boss defends post-9/11 tactics — To continue the conversation on our big topic of the week. DCI Brennan does acknowledge that some of the CIA’s methods were “abhorrent.” So, you know, mistakes were made…

3. Leaders scramble for support for spending bill — And if they don’t git ‘er done by midnight, the government will, once again turn into a pumpkin. We should have had a pool, after the election, on how long it would take the new GOP majority to shut down the government. The winning prediction would have been “before the new majority even takes office.”

4. U.S. Oil Prices Drop Below $60 a Barrel — A shot in the arm for the economy, perhaps, but I’m not looking forward to sharing the road with even more SUVs. Neither is the planet…

What do you want to talk about?

17 thoughts on “Open Thread for Thursday, December 11, 2014

  1. Kathryn Fenner

    Fraternities and sororities raise lots of money for charity,develop leadership skills and help forge lifelong friendships…and Miss America is a scholarship organization!

    I could have been a Chi Omega legacy, but preferred to make my own friends.

    This, too:

    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      Strangely, since neither of us was the Greek type, my wife and I met at a sorority house on the campus of Southwestern at Memphis, which later changed it’s name to Rhodes College. Very unlikely setting. It was at a party hosted by J and her friend Marty. Marty belonged to the sorority even though she was, if anything, a less likely Greek than we were. Her mother had insisted, having belonged to the same sorority….

      1. Rose

        My husband describes his USC fraternity from the 80s as “a bunch of drunks,” but he’s shocked by what they do today. The culture of fraternities today is far more disturbing with the number of assaults, sexual assaults and deaths and injuries from falling out of or off of buildings. The Atlantic article, “The Dark Side of Fraternities,” really delves into how dangerous fraternities are.
        And the Kappa Sigma case is the third frat story from SC this month. SAE chapters at Clemson and USC-Upstate got into trouble, too. That’s just what made the news. I never understood the attraction of going through humiliating – and possibly harmful – hazing rituals just to join a group.

        1. Kathryn Fenner

          I had an interesting discussion about this last night with a Yale BA/Penn JD who is well into his sixties and has lived in the USC area since the early 70s. He said he could not understand why they come to university if not to learn. I responded that they did not come to learn; it was a rite of passage to them–the right to drink oneself senseless. Upon further reflection, they also come to get a credential, so when they get an old-boy network job, they seem like the right sort of chap. Learning has naught to do with it!
          Part of what ails our state!

    1. Silence

      My reaction
      Let’s not pretend it’s a loan. It’s a bailout that won’t be paid back. Let’s also not pretend this is the last one.
      SC State needs to be put into receivership with a new management and board, and/or rolled into the USC system. But it won’t be. Because we don’t want to be called “racists” so we are treating them with kid gloves.

          1. Doug Ross

            I have a couple answers to that question. But I will keep them to myself for my own personal enjoyment.

            There are plenty of black people I wouldn’t mind swapping with and plenty of white people who I am glad I am not.

            1. Doug Ross

              My sarcasm regarding “black privilege” was driven by the constant drumbeat of “white privilege” that has been adopted by progressive lemmings. Some white people have it better than some black people. That’s life. If you want to fix that, tell me how. If all I have to do is acknowledge it, then fine. It exists. Now do something about it.

              Here’s some great example of “white privilege”:




        1. Bryan Caskey

          When I saw that gif, the first thoughts to go through my mind were:

          Why are those sailors burning money? And why does the black guy have chest cleavage? Is this a consequence of the don’t ask-don’t tell policy? Where is their commanding officer?


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