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What do Ben Stein and Howard Dean have in common?

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A few days back I reported here that Ben Stein had been uninvited to give the UVM (University of Vermont) commencement address, at which he was also to be given an honorary doctorate. I’m afraid I may have come across as a bit miffed by this seeming unfairness. Well, I’m happy to report that all’s right again with the world in Vermont:

Ben Stein Howard Dean

Howard Dean tapped for UVM commencement


Burlington, Vermont – February 6, 2009

A familiar face will give this year’s commencement speech at the University of Vermont.

Former Vermont Governor Howard Dean has been chosen. He served six terms as the state’s highest elected official. He then went on to run for president and just stepped down as Chairman of the DNC after four years on the job. Dean is also under consideration to join President Obama’s cabinet as Health and Human Services Secretary.

Dean replaces Ben Stein as this year’s commencement speaker. He withdrew his name earlier this week after faculty and others raised concerns about his controversial views on evolution and the role of science in the holocaust.

This will be UVM’s 205th Commencement.

As one of my colleagues put it, “Whew! For a minute there, UVM was threatened with a divisive, controversial, edgy kind of guy as its commencement speaker. Coming to its senses, UVM told him to go away and has substituted a warm, inclusive, consensus figure. Graduates, family, and friends of the graduates, chill the champagne! It’s time to celebrate!”

Speaking of Ben Stein...In "Ferris Beuler's Day Off", he played a high school teacher, and is seen giving a lecture on the "Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act". The U.S. Senate is working on a redux of this protectionist experiment in its "Buy American" provision of the [so-called] Economic Stimulus Bill. Another reason for academics to hate Stein, I guess! You can see the clip here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0s-oGumvPz0 at about the 40 second mark. russ
All I can say is: YEEEEEEEEARGGHHGHGHGGHGHHGH Maybe he'll work some religion into it. A quote from the New Testatment, perhaps? Maybe from Job? Stupid Howard Dean quote. tribune7

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