Economics and the mid-life crisis have much in common: Both dwell on foregone opportunities

C'est la vie; c'est la guerre; c'est la pomme de terre . . . . . . . . . . . . . email: jpalmer at uwo dot ca

. . . . . . . . . . .Richard Posner should be awarded the next Nobel Prize in Economics . . . . . . . . . . . .

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

SAFS on the BAUT Boycott

The Society for Academic Freedom and Scholarship [SAFS] has recently passed the following resolution:

On Friday, April 22, 2005, the executive of the British Association of University Teachers (BAUT) voted to boycott Haifa University and Bar Ilan University, and their professoriates, because of the BAUT’s view of the politics of the Israeli government.

The members of The Society for Academic Freedom and Scholarship (SAFS) condemn this boycott as violating the spirit and principles of academic freedom. Academic freedom means the right to engage in free inquiry – to conduct research, teach, and communicate the results of one's research without regard to prevailing doctrine. The hallmark of science and scholarship is reasoned debate, based on logic and evidence. Political boycotts of scholars are antithetical to truth seeking. They diminish the dignity of the individuals affected and debase the scholarly process.

We call on the British Association of University Teachers to rescind their boycott.
And if you think this BAUT boycott is not anti-Semitic, please read this!!: [hat tip to MA for the link] This paragraph below is just an excerpt from "Normblog: the weblog of Norman Geras".

The AUT website has a separate page on the Israel-Palestine conflict. On it we are told about Israeli forces killing and injuring Palestinian academics, students and trade unionists; there's a call for a moratorium on EU funding for Israeli cultural and research institutions; support is offered to Palestinian colleagues and to the Trade Union Friends of Palestine; local AUT branches are urged to form links with Palestinian universities and to support them against Israeli oppression. What's striking about all this is not so much what's present but what's absent. There is absolutely no mention of anything at all on the other side. For all the AUT says here, you'd never know that a single bomb had gone off in Israel, nor that there had been bombs intended to kill, and which had succeeded in killing, university students, for example on the Jerusalem campus - a matter of some significance to the AUT, one might have thought. Nor, more broadly, would one ever know anything about the establishment of Israel by UN resolution following the genocide against the Jews of Europe, or about how the surrounding Arab states immediately declared war on Israel; nor about the ongoing threats to eliminate it; nor about the venomous anti-Semitism, targeting not just Israelis but Jews worldwide, prevalent in Palestinian and other Arab cultural and educational institutions; nor about the recurrent murder of Israeli civilians. These are just as much a part of the tragic story of that land as are Israel's failures, but they receive no mention from the AUT.
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