Mason in the News

Posted: December 14, 2007 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

Following are highlights of national news coverage Mason recently received.

Friday, Dec. 7, Houston Chronicle

Bush’s Rhetoric on Faith Has Dropped a Notch

“There is something missing from President Bush’s speeches these days, an omission all the more profound because what’s lacking used to be so prevalent. Bush is not talking about his faith anymore. ‘He is at a different stage in his presidency,’ said Mark Rozell, an expert on religion and the presidency at George Mason University. ‘I don’t think there is much he can do politically to grow support among evengelicals, for example.’ Instead, Rozell said, Bush has to rely on broader constituencies for things he wants to get done in what’s left of his presidency, such as tax reform and war funding.”

Friday, Dec. 7, Inside Higher Ed

Giving Thought to Donor Intent

“Too many colleges violate the trust of philanthropists by redirecting gifts intended for a specific purpose without giving adequate notice. Craig Lerner, a law professor at George Mason University, said donors shouldn’t be surprised years later if a gift made with only general terms isn’t supporting something they approve of down the line, particularly if they are giving to sources they don’t know well. Instead, he said philanthropists should consider finding someone or something they truly believe in, limit a gift to five or 10 years and have enough trust so that strings don’t need to be attached.”

Tuesday, Dec. 11, Washington Post

Analyzing the Dance of the GOP Debaters

“What accounts for the astonishing Mike Huckabee surge of recent weeks? ‘He listens,’ says Karen Studd. ‘He’s willing to hear other perspectives.’ But as professors of dance, they’ve got their own theory about Huckabee’s ascent in the polls: It’s something in the way he moves. A man of confident gestures and lively demeanor, Huckabee just might be this cycle’s Great Communicator. Studd, a professor at George Mason University, is a practitioner of Laban Movement Analysis, a technique for describing body movements and hypothesizing about the signals they send. It’s not any one trick or gimmick; Huckabee is simply the most “integrative” guy in the race, Studd says. Talking about the need for preventive health care, he moves his hand forward and brings his body’s full weight along, his eyebrows lifting in perfect synchronicity. The message? ‘That all of him is invested,’ says Studd.”

Wednesday, Dec. 12, Washington Post

As Housing Market Slumps, Fairfax Faces a Budget Crisis

“A worsening housing market, including rising foreclosures, has rapidly pushed Fairfax County government into a budget crisis that probably will last several years, pinching spending by hundreds of millions of dollars on schools, public safety and human services, officials said yesterday. Stephen Fuller, director of the Center for Regional Analysis at George Mason University, agreed that flat revenues will probably persist. But Fuller noted that part of the problem is government spending habits, including a dramatic new reliance on residential real estate taxes. Now that the real estate market is correcting after years of double-digit inflation, governments need to rethink their spending, he said. ‘The cost of services is going up at a rate probably double the rate of inflation,’ Fuller said. ‘Fortunately in Fairfax, the market will come back sooner than other places, but it’s going to be tough moving forward, and ’09 may be the worst year.’”

Wednesday, Dec. 12, Chronicle of Higher Education

New Effort Encourages Professors to Share the Research Materials on Their Hard Drives

Dan Cohen, director of the Center for History and New Media at George Mason University, wants scholars to stop keeping their research materials to themselves. Just about every academic has notes, photographs, digital scans of research documents, and plenty of other data on their hard drives, he says, but they rarely share anything beyond what makes it into their final books or journal articles. Why not upload such material to a shared online database for other scholars to draw from? The center announced yesterday that it will work with the nonprofit Internet Archive to create just such a database — and to build tools to make it easy for professors to add their personal research files. ‘It’s pooling together all of these resources that scholars have and putting them in one place where they can be found,’ said Cohen, in an interview Wednesday. He said he hoped the system would be ready by the summer.”

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