If large groups of people don’t believe in empirical science, don’t respect state authorities, and are nihilistic in regard to the deaths of themselves and their loved ones, there is almost nothing an enlightened world can do to defend itself.

“[Covid is] communal in nature and now it’s a matter of getting them to understand that and getting all these folks to understand what they need to do to minimize the spread.”

Says the Rockland County executive.

Covid has been a loud global fact for how long? People have been trying to get the ultraorthodox to wear masks and stop partying for how long?

You are not going to get these folks to understand.


Theological teeth-gnashing here.

A timely reminder that the beloved people of this country have always vastly outnumbered the hateful.

[I]t is to the good of the whole, as well as to the interest of the individual, that everyone, who can, sets himself down to his business, and contributes his quota of taxes. [It] is one of the first duties he owes to his family, to himself, and to his country. Every amusement ought to be dispensed with, every indulgence curtailed, and every possible economy practiced, both public and private, until a revenue sufficient for the protection and good of the country is obtained, and the debt to public justice satisfied.

We are the heirs of Thomas Paine. We will find our way back to him.

We shall not see his like again.

But we have seen his like before.

‘NYC Virus Spike Continues in Jewish Areas of Brooklyn, Queens’

This is promising. Bloomberg is willing to state emphatically, in its headline, that one religious subculture is significantly to blame for the New York City spike. UD‘s co-religionists in NY and Israel deserve the rage being directed at them. And UD knows from studying these communities that nothing will make the miscreants among them change.

I have no idea what the solution is.

From your lips…

…. to God’s ears.

“Podcaster Katie Herzog tweeted: ‘My first act as an anti-racist will be sending my black son back to the orphanage.’”

LOL. As always, the best way to respond to stupid racists – in this case, an anti-white racist who attacks white people for adopting black babies – is to ridicule them.

That Professor Kendi heads an institute of anti-racist research is une ironie extrêmement riche.


And what a gift this guy has given the Genius of the Carpathians.

Look, ya gotta admit da guy’s got balls.

Trump criticised Obama for only paying 20.5% tax in 2012. A new NYT report shows Trump paid no income tax that year.

“Greatest tax cheat in US history.”

Costing More Lives: A Small Price to Pay.

The shuls of the hardcore Hassidic sects which make up the community that opposes any formal cooperation with the secular Zionist state were packed with men and boys. There were no “capsules” or even bubbles of polystyrene sheeting. And the police, despite being stationed very near by on the invisible border with Palestinian east Jerusalem had no thought of intervening… [A] large proportion of other ultra-Orthodox groups, in particular other Hassidic courts, have also been flouting the pandemic prohibitions on gathering in crowds in synagogues for months now, and on Rosh Hashana as well. Not only in Israel. Similar scenes exist in New York and elsewhere. And the infection levels in these neighborhoods are correspondingly higher…

Can [we] stand up to the unyielding nature of Jewish fundamentalism? …

The Haredim have a strategy for dealing with the plague. Change nothing. It may cost more lives in the short-term, but once this is finally over, they will have preserved their institutions and communal framework.

A praying mantis spent…
… hours on my window sill today, gobbling insects galore.
Israeli Government Officials Beginning to Go There

You don’t want serious pathogens breaking out among tightly packed pre-scientific populations, some of whose leaders and followers refuse to acknowledge the legitimacy of state authorities.

It’s really that simple – here in the States, or over there.

Both countries, having failed to deal firmly with the problem in its early stages, are now forced to try more extreme measures as covid flares up.

Measles, hepatitis, herpes – Ultraorthodox Jewish communities have been in the news for outbreaks of these recently also. Vaccination is like … what? Who needs it. And if you stop our mohels from sucking our infants’ penises we’ll sue.

Kleinste Geige der Welt
Germany's Ex-Royals Want their Riches Back, 
but Past Ties to Hitler Stand in the Way
‘I can hardly wait / I know I won’t be late / I’ll spend my time in prayer / And when the ship comes in / I’ll leave this world of sin / And go sailing through the air’

Many of New York’s ultraorthodox true believers can hardly wait to leave this world of sin. But for them there’s an extra verse to the gospel standard:

And I won’t be alone

When I fly to that throne

I’ll sneeze and spread disease.

Let’s leave this world of sin

Where we have too long been

And to heaven have the keys!

Trump’s most solid voter bloc (a huge majority of America’s ultraorthodox will ultra-enthusiastically vote for Trump) has “embraced” his “views on masks and the pandemic.” “No major Hasidic rabbis in New York City have been seen wearing masks.”

To some, the disregard for masks is evidence of an outlook in which everything in life is up to God. “I don’t sense a lot of fear,” an administrator at a network of clinics in Williamsburg said. “I think there is a fatalistic attitude, like if it’s meant to be, I’ll get sick.”

The obvious results have multiple haredim dying of covid in NY hospitals in a short time-span – and not all of them are elderly. Deaths are growing. Fast.

“There’s rampant COVID denialism and misinformation … in the community,” one person familiar with the situation said. “People are not getting tested and are refusing care even when sick. This is deeply distressing.”


[I]f the outbreak spreads further in the Orthodox community, it could begin to take hold elsewhere, with even more serious consequences. If the city’s overall positivity rate hits 3 percent, that would trigger a new [citywide] lockdown, including the closing of public schools.


“In the absence of our doing the right thing, we will need to be in a lockdown type situation, as occurred in Israel because they haven’t been able to control the spread of the virus.”


“It took them seeing deaths – and unfortunately that community saw many deaths – it took that to change,” he said of the decision to close schools and synagogues in March and April. “When it gets to that point, it’s already too late.”


The fanatics among the haredim of Israel and New York are ignorant, sadistic, and suicidal. Add to that, now, homicidal. The sane among this sect have never been able to control the insane, and governments fear looking bigoted. So take a deep breath, New York.

Or wait. Don’t.

Fanatics Will Try to Kill Her.

For Shamsia Alizada’s own safety, Harvard should offer her a massive scholarship to study here. Med school here too. Maybe by the time of her graduation, Afghanistan will have gotten to the point where they don’t try to kill intelligent, high-profile women.

‘Trump is an aspiring fascist who would burn democracy to the ground.’

It’s time. Violence-fomenting aspiring fascists who refuse peaceful transfer of power: We’re back in the Second World War; and it’s time to dust off its songs, alter them a bit, and SING.

When the lights go on again all over this land

And we have our victory all over this land

Then we will work together to rebuild the polity we almost killed

The sadist’s going home —  we couldn’t be more thrilled

When the lights go on again all over this land

And we ship our fascist pols far far from this land

Then our democracy will find its wings and free hearts will sing

When the lights go on again all over this land

‘At my university, the Center for Diversity and Inclusion offered three workshops… : one “for faculty of color,” another “for women of color” and a third “for white allies.” … [C]riticism forced them to back down.’

LOLOLOL. And the university is San Diego State! Feast your eyes! For years, it has consistently been one of the shittiest, drugs-guns-frats-and-jocks-choked scandals in America.

One of the more notorious drug raids in this country took place at SDSU’s well-armed Theta Chi fraternity. One of UD‘s colleagues left her university to last barely six years as SDSU’s president, his unflagging personal greed an insult to students, faculty, alumni, and of course the state legislature.

It’s such a bad school. UD‘s so not surprised it hired people to add segregation to its stupidities and misdeeds.

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Dr. Bernard Carroll, known as the "conscience of psychiatry," contributed to various blogs, including Margaret Soltan's University Diaries, for which he sometimes wrote limericks under the name Adam.
New York Times

George Washington University English professor Margaret Soltan writes a blog called University Diaries, in which she decries the Twilight Zone-ish state our holy land’s institutes of higher ed find themselves in these days.
The Electron Pencil

It’s [UD's] intellectual honesty that makes her blog required reading.
Professor Mondo

There's always something delightful and thought intriguing to be found at Margaret Soltan's no-holds-barred, firebrand tinged blog about university life.

You can get your RDA of academic liars, cheats, and greedy frauds at University Diaries. All disciplines, plus athletics.
truffula, commenting at Historiann

Margaret Soltan at University Diaries blogs superbly and tirelessly about [university sports] corruption.

University Diaries. Hosted by Margaret Soltan, professor of English at George Washington University. Boy is she pissed — mostly about athletics and funding, the usual scandals — but also about distance learning and diploma mills. She likes poems too. And she sings.
Dissent: The Blog

[UD belittles] Mrs. Palin's degree in communications from the University of Idaho...
The Wall Street Journal

Professor Margaret Soltan, blogging at University Diaries... provide[s] an important voice that challenges the status quo.
Lee Skallerup Bessette, Inside Higher Education

[University Diaries offers] the kind of attention to detail in the use of language that makes reading worthwhile.
Sean Dorrance Kelly, Harvard University

Margaret Soltan's ire is a national treasure.
Roland Greene, Stanford University

The irrepressibly to-the-point Margaret Soltan...
Carlat Psychiatry Blog

Margaret Soltan, whose blog lords it over the rest of ours like a benevolent tyrant...
Perplexed with Narrow Passages

Margaret Soltan is no fan of college sports and her diatribes on the subject can be condescending and annoying. But she makes a good point here...
Outside the Beltway

From Margaret Soltan's excellent coverage of the Bernard Madoff scandal comes this tip...
Money Law

University Diaries offers a long-running, focused, and extremely effective critique of the university as we know it.
Anthony Grafton, American Historical Association

The inimitable Margaret Soltan is, as usual, worth reading. ...
Medical Humanities Blog

I awake this morning to find that the excellent Margaret Soltan has linked here and thereby singlehandedly given [this blog] its heaviest traffic...
Ducks and Drakes

As Margaret Soltan, one of the best academic bloggers, points out, pressure is mounting ...
The Bitch Girls

Many of us bloggers worry that we don’t post enough to keep people’s interest: Margaret Soltan posts every day, and I more or less thought she was the gold standard.
Tenured Radical

University Diaries by Margaret Soltan is one of the best windows onto US university life that I know.
Mary Beard, A Don's Life

[University Diaries offers] a broad sense of what's going on in education today, framed by a passionate and knowledgeable reporter.
More magazine, Canada

If deity were an elected office, I would quit my job to get her on the ballot.
Notes of a Neophyte