Sunday, March 29, 2015

BILL BRADLEY: 50 Years Since "Where U R"

The Number Has Been Retired.
Some people stand out in their Freshman year. Bill Bradley did that.

He attracted the attention of John McPhee, a writer for The New Yorker. It's now 50 years since McPhee's article for The New Yorker about Bradley in the January 1965 issue. It was published before Bradley led Princeton to the NCAA Final Four.

Princeton was the first Ivy League basketball team to get that far. The New York Times today paid homage to the man and McPhee's story on the fifth page of the Sports Section (under "Road to Indianapolis" where the NCAA Final Four is being played) and this story is already before 10 am on Sunday the newspaper's most-emailed story.

The title of the article and a subsequent book, "A Sense of Where You Are" came from Bradley after he sent a ball through the hoop while keeping his eyes on McPhee. 

He said: 
When you have played basketball for a while, you don't need to look at the basket when you are in close like this. You develop a sense of where you are.

Friday, March 27, 2015

OXFORD: Shop (Online Too) (Updated May 14, 2016)

The Oxford University Shop is at 106 High Street.
The Oxford University Shop at 106 High Street is the official University shop. It is open 9 am to 5:30 pm Monday-Saturday, and Sunday 11 am to 4 pm.

The following is a synopsis of a review of the Oxford University Shop by Matt Wright.

Clothing T shirts, hoodies, polo shirts, rugby shirts, sweatshirts. Includes children's versions.

Designs. Most items are made exclusively for the Shop.

Provenance. Where possible products for sale are made locally or in the UK, and are sustainably produced.

Suggested Gifts:
  • College views–e.g., three Christ Church views in different colored miniature glass panels
  • Delicate thread-drawn illustrations of Magdalen College on white bone china mugs
  • Oxford Stripe design silk scarf based on stripes of the Oxford college scarves
  • Beautifully patterned ceramic bowls and goblet

The discount I got with my Oxford alumni card when I shopped there last week was 10 percent. It shows up on the receipt as a "student" discount.  Staff members get a 15 percent discount. 

Shop online:

BOAT RACE: Dinner History, USA and Canada

Prof. Nick Rawlins, Pro-Vice-Chancellor of Oxford,
will be speaking at the Chicago BRD April 10, 2015.
The Winklevoss Twins gave the Toast to the Universities at
the BRD in NYC in 2012.
Oxford Today's web site has just posted an article that originated here, on the history of boat race dinners (BRDs) in North America.

The highlights are:

Oldest BRD: Vancouver, British Columbia. Source: Tony Knox, Robert Dunn.

Oldest uninterrupted: New York City.

Best-attended: Washington, DC. George Keys.

Longest run for a BRD organizer: Chicago. John Morrison (this will be the 50th year he has organized the event in Chicago).

Oldest continuing alumni boat race: Boston. David Manns.

Oldest Boat Race brunch: Los Angeles. Bea Hopkinson.

Oldest Boat Race breakfast: Portland, Ore.

Strongest Cambridge leadership: Montreal. Catherine Gillbert. Professors Gerald Ratzer and John J Jonas.

For a more general blog on rowing, go here.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

VICE CHANCELLOR: Andrew Hamilton to Head NYU

Madrid, April 26, 2013. Trinity College Dinner, Real Gran Pena Club. L to R:
Andrew Moore, reunion organizer. Andrew Hamilton, Vice Chancellor,
Oxford University. Sir Ivor Roberts, President of Trinity. Alice Tepper Marlin,
President of SAI. Sir Roger Fry, founder, schools in Spain. Photo: JT Marlin. 
According to The N.Y. Times today, March 19, Oxford Vice Chancellor Andrew Hamilton will be taking over the reins in January 2016 from John Sexton as the 16th President of New York University.

N.Y.U. has a modest endowment relative to other large private universities with global scope and aspirations.

Dr. Hamilton said that he would continue teaching and conducting research. Dr. Hamilton is 62 and has been Vice-Chancellor of Oxford since 2009. He was previously Provost at Yale University and Professor of Chemistry and Molecular Biophysics.

At Oxford, seeking to recover from cuts in government financing of universities initiated by Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and continued by subsequent administrations, he was effective in raising the level of fund-raising. He led what Oxford has described as the largest fund-raising campaign in European university history.

Dr. Hamilton is likely to be paid more than at Oxford, where he earned £442,000, or $660,000. Dr. Sexton earned $1.5 million in total compensation in the 2012-13 school year, according to publicly available tax returns.

N.Y.U. picked Dr. Hamilton from more than 200 nominees. It did not disclose the other candidates, another candidate was reportedly Michael Lynton, chief executive of Sony Entertainment.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

BOAT RACE: NYC, 78th Dinner 2011


James Doty, Chairman, PCAOB
Toast to the Universities - James Doty, Chairman, PCAOB

Response from the Universities - Sir Martin Taylor, Warden, Merton College
Timing and Script
6:45-7:30 pm - OPEN WINE BAR

7:30 pm WELCOME – Dr. John Tepper Marlin (Trinity, Oxford). 
Welcome to the 78th annual and uninterrupted New York City Oxford-Cambridge Boat Race Dinner.
I call upon Mr. Paul Lewis of Balliol, Oxford and The New York Times to say the Balliol grace as mandated in the year 1282.
Mr. Paul Lewis (Balliol, Oxford):  Benedictus benedicat. Amen.

I call now on Mr. Ian Hawkins of Trinity Hall, Cambridge. 
Ian has been a participant in the last three Oxford-Cambridge alumni boat races, which have been at the Saugatuck Boat Club in Westport, CT. He is launching a family-friendly alumni boating day in New Jersey. 
Mr. Ian Hawkins (Trinity Hall, Cambridge).
The Boat Race was held last week. Claude Prince of Kellogg College, Oxford, was there and will report on the race. I warn you that the news will not be good for some fine people in this room. Brace yourself.

Mr. Claude Prince (Kellogg, Oxford). 
We try to balance the speakers between Oxford and Cambridge Universities. Our next speaker is Dr. Christopher Oakley, has matriculated at both universities. He will give the Toast to the President of the United States. He is a physicist based in London who has found his comparative advantage responding to the calls of Wall Street firms on matters too complex for me to describe.
Dr. Christopher Oakley (Trinity, Oxford and Trinity, Cambridge). 
To introduce our next speaker, I invite Sally Fan of Green Templeton College, Oxford. A nationally recognized journalist in China, Sally is an active member of the Dinner Committee. 
Dr. Linda Gruendken (St. John’s, Cambridge). Introduced by Sally Fan (Green Templeton, Oxford). A rower for Cambridge, Linda has previously addressed the dinner on the race results.
To give the Toast to the Universities, we are honored to have Jim Doty of Merton College, Oxford.  Jim has been named a “Washington Superlawyer” many times. He has recently accepted an appointment by the Securities and Exchange Commission to chair the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board, having been General Counsel at the SEC a few years ago. 
If you remember, the two largest bankruptcies in history, Enron and then WorldCom, occurred within six months. In July 2002 the Sarbanes-Oxley Act was passed to prevent a recurrence of the systematic accounting and auditing lapses that led to the bankruptcies. As part of the Act, the PCAOB was created to answer the question: Who Audits the Auditors? Or as Juvenal asked, in a different context, in Satires VI, “Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?” The first Chairman was Bill McDonough, who had been President of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.  Jim Doty is now the leader of the forces that are defending the capitalist system against its exogenous enemies. So to the question: “Quis custodiet?” We can answer: Jim does. 
Mr. James E. Doty (Merton, Oxford), Chairman, Public Company Accounting Oversight Board, Washington, DC.
Professor Sir Martin Taylor, Warden, Merton
 College, Oxford
To introduce our final speaker, I call on Herve Gouraige of Merton, Oxford,  an attorney at Sills Cummis and another active member of the Dinner Committee. 
RESPONSE FROM THE UNIVERSITIES – Professor Sir Martin Taylor, Warden, Merton College, Oxford. Introduced by Mr. Herve Gouraige (Merton, Oxford). A mathematician of note, Sir Martin is traveling with the famed Merton Choir.
That concludes our 78th Annual Dinner. Thanks again to our Corporate Dinner Sponsors, HSBC Bank and the Andrew Sabin Family Foundation, and to our academic sponsors, who have been playing an increasingly important role in making the dinners run smoothly. Please note the date for the 79th Annual Dinner – Thursday, April, 2012. If you are interested in supporting this dinner and the 80th dinner in 2013, please let me know. Meanwhile, you are invited now to repair to the Algonquin Hotel, a few buildings to the west, where the conversation will continue. The drinks will be Dutch treat.  


The Boat Race Crews 2011

Oxford crew, from bow (GB unless stated):
Moritz Hafner (Ger), Ben Myers, Alec Dent, Ben Ellison, Karl Hudspith, Constantine Louloudis, George Whittaker, Simon Hislop, Cox: Sam Winter-Levy
Ben Myers is Oxford’s only rower from last year’s crew, which is boosted by the inclusion of Karl Hudspith and Constantine Louloudis, who finished seventh in recent GB trials.
Cambridge crew, from bow:

Mike Thorp, Joel Jennings, Dan Rix-Standing, Hardy Cubasch (Australia), George Nash, Geoff Roth (Can), Derek Rasmussen (US), David Nelson (Australia), Cox: Liz Box
Cambridge are the heavier boat by an average of 1.63kg (3.6 lb per man), with their average crew weight 92.58 kg (14 st 8 lb).
Oxford coach Sean Bowden is supervising his 17th Boat Race, having previously coached crews to nine victories (four with Cambridge). He said: ‘The crew has come together well and what it lacks in Boat Race experience, it more than makes up for in determination and track record. Because we lost last year we’ve had a chance to look back and see the stuff we could do better.
He added: 'We will benefit from a hunger for success, but I wouldn’t want to underestimate Cambridge’s determination.’
Medical student Simon Hislop is stroke for the Oxford crew, after being diagnosed with testicular cancer and undergoing surgery last year. He said: ‘Being in the Boat Race is a big deal for me because I’ve been rowing on the Tideway for years, watching these crews. I’m coming to the end of my rowing career and this will be a nice way to draw a line under it.’
Alec Dent also makes the boat, having earlier resigned the club presidency when he was suffering from a back injury and thought he would not recover in time for the race.
The rest of the crew consists of Moritz Hafner, Ben Myers, Ben Ellison, Karl Hudspith and George Whittaker, with Sam Winter-Levy selected as cox. At 18, Sam will be one of the youngest coxswains in the history of the race. Oxford will face a strong Cambridge crew which boasts three members of last year’s winning boat.
The Boat Race, which is sponsored by Xchanging, takes place on the River Thames on Saturday 26 March, beginning at 5 pm. It will be broadcast live on BBC One, BBC Radio Five Live and the BBC Sport website from 3.45 pm.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

BLOG READS | 60K Page Views - Top Ten Posts

Thank you for reading.

Now... sign up for the next Boat Race Dinner.

Click on the first post below for the list.

Here are the Top 10 most-read posts during the past week:

Mar 5, 2015

Mar 7, 2015

Apr 15, 2013

SELMA, ALABAMA: Then and Now

Marching to Selma, 1965. More photos.
The Selma march precipitated the passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

The violence against peaceful marchers on that "Bloody Sunday", March 7, 1965 shocked the nation. It led to Martin Luther King's 25,000-person strong Selma-to-Montgomery march, 18 days later.

The Voting Rights Act was signed by President Lyndon Baines Johnson within five months.

The Act outlawed "Jim Crow" literacy tests, poll taxes, and other subjective voter tests widely used in some southern states to deprive African-Americans of the vote. The law required Federal oversight of voter registration in states and voting districts where such tests were used.
President Obama Visits Selma, 2015

The Political Climate in 1965

As an undergraduate at Oxford in 1962-64 I was trying to learn how politics worked by getting involved. I served as the General Agent of the Oxford University Conservative Association (OUCA), which in those days approximated the range of views of the Democratic Party in the United States. I got to know many of the people who were on the cutting edge of what became Britain's Thatcher revolution and our Reagan revolution.

I enjoyed our cerebral deliberations about the benefits of the free market. But what carried these ideas turned out to be an emotional tide, a lingering resentment by some about the intrusion of national governments in local affairs. The theoretical arguments of academics objecting to government interference would be paired with what - for lack of an adequate term - can be called a fear of change.

In the Catholic Church at that time, Vatican II had just finished its work and left traditionalist Catholics in shock at, for example, the loss of Latin in the Mass. Many Catholics were therefore open to conservative complaints. Whether from reaction to actions in the Vatican or in Washington, Catholics were ready to turn inward, which was the call of Republic poachers in the United States.

Whereas during the American Civil War it was Republican Abraham Lincoln who championed the rights of slaves, parties had become realigned by FDR, JFK and LBJ. Now the Democrats were the champions of the oppressed and the GOP was the party of those who felt that enough had been done for the poor and minorities.

During 1964-66, after finishing my two years at Oxford, I started work at the Federal Reserve Board as a financial economist in the International Finance division. I reported on what central banks were doing in the newly independent nations of Africa in those Cold War days, when the fear of infiltration of Communist agents in Africa was a major concern in Washington. Those who objected to excessive government within the United States were often at the same time demanding that the nation spend more defending the Free World against Soviet or Chinese Communist influence.

During 1965-66, Baron Patten of Barnes, who has been Oxford's Chancellor since 2003, was in a good position to observe sentiment in the southern states, where local people felt the sting of national outrage over the handling of peaceful demonstrations by law enforcement, and then the consequences in the form of federal agents. Chris Patten, as he then was, read Modern History at Oxford, going down in 1965 and visiting America on a Coolidge Traveling Fellowship.

Why Pennsylvania Plates Were Red Flags

His traveling fellowship took Patten in the summer of 1965 around some southern states in a car with Pennsylvania license plates. He told me a few years ago at an alumni reunion event that he was puzzled by the open hostility that his car quickly provoked after crossing into Alabama.

It finally dawned on him, he said, that his Pennsylvania license plates falsely flagged him as a civil rights "troublemaker". While many southerners were deeply embarrassed by the actions of white supremacists, resentment was high in the south. The Ku Klux Klan was powerful and deadly.

Pennsylvania was closely connected to two events involving volunteers from the north seeking to help Rev. Martin Luther King obtain voting rights and other civil rights in the south.
  • The previous summer, three members of a Penn Law School contingent to Mississippi were killed by white supremacists in Philadelphia, Miss. (One of them was from New York.)
  • On March 7, 1965 a Pennsylvania-born volunteer was killed by three KKK members.
Viola Liuzzo, 1925-1965
The volunteer was Viola Fauver Gregg, born in the town of California, Pa. on April 11, 1925. After a failed early marriage and with two children, she married Anthony Liuzzo, a Detroit Teamster union official. They had three more children, five in all. At 36 she returned to  Wayne State University and soon graduated with top honors, becoming a medical lab technician. She was also a committed Unitarian Universalist and a member of the NAACP.

On March 25, after the second march to Montgomery, Viola volunteered to drive people from downtown to Montgomery Airport. Her co-driver was Leroy Moton, a young African American. Coming back from one such trip, the volunteers were passed by a car carrying three KKK members from Birmingham plus an undercover FBI informant. Here's what ensued:
Tombstone, Viola Liuzzo, Holy
Sepulchre Cemetery, Southfield, Mich.
  • The KKK members were outraged at seeing a white woman and black man together in the car. They decided to kill them.
  • Collie Wilkins pulled alongside and fired his gun twice.  Viola was hit in the head and died instantly. Leroy was not hit; he was covered in Viola's blood and pretended to be dead. He was recently interviewed by a Connecticut newspaper. Besides Wilkins (21), KKK members William Eaton (41) and Eugene Thomas (42) were caught. The FBI man, Gary Rowe (34), testified against them. 
  • Later, FBI director J. Edgar Hoover, aware that the FBI's presence in the car did not look good, initiated a campaign to discredit Liuzzo. He told LBJ she was a drug addict, had sex with Moton, and was married to someone with ties to organized crime. The FBI planted these stories and several newspapers repeated them. Liuzzo daughter Penny says that the FBI propaganda campaign "took the life right out of [my father] ... he started drinking a lot."
  • An autopsy in 1965 showed no traces of drugs in Viola Liuzzo's system, and no evidence of recent sexual activity,
  • The FBI's role in the smear campaign was uncovered in 1978 when Liuzzo's children obtained case documents from the FBI under the Freedom of Information Act.
  • Despite Rowe's testimony, the three KKK members were acquitted of murder by an all-white Alabama jury. The acquittal was widely reported in the media, outraging national officials.
  • LBJ's Justice Department responded by using an 1870 federal law to charge the three men with conspiring to deprive Viola Liuzzo of her civil rights.
  • All three KKK members were found guilty and sentenced to 10 years in prison.
  • Rowe was placed in a witness protection program because of threats from the KKK.
  • Civil Rights Memorial was erected in Montgomery, Ala. to Viola and 39 other murdered civil rights activists, in front of the Civil Rights Memorial Center - which was formerly the office building of the Southern Poverty Law Center, founded in 1971. At least two memorial tombstones have been created in Liuzzo's memory in 1989 and 1991.
Bill Buckley's Upstart Conservative Campaign in New York City

Patten returned north to New York City to work in the campaign of John Lindsay, doing what today would be called "oppo research", tracking the television and other appearances of Lindsay's rival Bill Buckley. Young Patten arrived in New York City at a time when both NY State's Senators liberal Republicans -- Jacob Javits and Nelson Rockefeller. It was near to the high point of liberal (Ripon Society) Republicanism. Buckley never expected to win, and did not, but he developed a series of campaign strategies that could be considered a template for Ronald Reagan's presidential campaign.

Buckley, a Roman Catholic, saw something that became a crucial part of American politics for the next half century. He saw that many Catholic voters could be carved out of the Democratic base, appealing to their sense of tradition and mainstream morality, persuading them to vote Republican even though it was likely to be against their economic interest. This strategy was later described in Thomas Frank's 2004 book, What's the Matter with Kansas?

As a Catholic educated at a Benedictine school (as I was), Patten was well-positioned to pick up on Buckley's message in 1965 and how it might actually have traction. Buckley was viewed as extreme - but he was just ahead of his time. It would have been hard for someone in New York City to visualize a conservative-libertarian uprising. The Republicans were not much less progressive than the Democrats on many issues. Nixon created the country's Environmental Protection Agency. Bill Ruckelshaus, Nixon's appointee as the first head of the EPA, has said more than once in recent years that he doesn't recognize the Republican party he once served. Mayor Bloomberg was an exception, cut from the same cloth as the liberal Republicans of an earlier day.


Civil rights issues are still with us. In 2013 the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the Voting Rights Act in 2013 as obsolete and freeing nine states, including Alabama, to change election laws without advance approval. The recent Ferguson, Mo. investigation shows continued systematic bias against minorities, and this city is in no way an isolated example. New areas of contention have arisen such as gender-related rights. The battle between tradition and change that Buckley envisioned in 1965 is still on, but as President Obama's speech in Selma stressed, much has changed for the better

Saturday, March 7, 2015

BIRTHDAYS: Oxonians (Updated March 3, 2016)

Any Oxonian with a Wikipedia entry, dead or alive, belongs on the birthday list.

This post was opened March 7, 2015. It includes college and year of birth.

I have sprinkled in a few Cambridge people that I happen to have written up in relation to the Oxford-Cambridge Boat Race Dinners.

If you have names to add to the list, please send them to me and I will add them in - See also Oxford Obits, by date of death.

03 | J.R.R. Tolkien, CBE (Exeter) 1892
27 Charles Dodgson, "Lewis Carroll" (Ch.Ch.) 1832
13 | Anna Watkins (Cambridge rower)
21 John Henry Cardinal Newman (Trinity) 1801
21 | W. H. Auden 
13 | Frederick Lord North (Trinity) 1732
10 | James Viscount Bryce (Trinity) 1838
29 Sir Basil "Gaffer" Blackwell (Merton) 1889
04 Dan Topolski (New) 1945
05 | James Smithson (Pembroke) 1765
16Adam Smith (Balliol) 1723
17John Wesley (Ch.Ch.) 1703
10E. Clerihew Bentley (Merton) 1875
28 | Senator Bill Bradley (Worcester) 1943
08 | Cecil Calvert, 2nd Baron Baltimore (Trinity) 1605
10 | George Goodman, "Adam Smith" (BNC) 1930
16 | T. E. Lawrence (of Arabia) (Jesus) 1888
07 | Peter Darrow (Trinity) 1950
23 | Denis Woodfield (Lincoln) 1933
09 | Noel Godfrey Chavasse (Trinity) 1884
09 | Francis Chavasse (Trinity and St. Peter's) 1884
15 | William Pitt the Elder, Lord Chatham (Trinity) 1708
21 | Sir Arthur Quiller-Couch, "Q" (Trinity) 1863
29C. S. Lewis (Univ.) 1898
18Charles Wesley (Ch.Ch.) 1707
22 | James Oglethorpe (Corpus), 1st Gov. of Georgia 1696

Birthdays Unknown
Euclid Tsakalotos (Queen's), Greek Minister of Finance, 1960
Leonard Calvert (Trinity), 1st Gov. of Maryland 1606
Rev. Lawrence Washington (BNC), GW's gggrandfather 1602
George Calvert, 1st Baron Baltimore (Trinity) 1579