This Week in the News…

Posted: September 15, 2000 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

Following are highlights of national news coverage George Mason received during the past week:

Saturday, Sept. 9, CNN

Transportation Department Keeping Door Open to Possible Widening of Firestone Tire Recall

Gene Randall, CNN Anchor: “For more on the Bridgestone/Firestone recall and what it could mean in the long term, we’re joined by professor Michael Krauss of George Mason University. He is the author of Fire and Smoke: Government, Lawsuits, and the Rule of Law.

Krauss: “It seems clear that Firestone is on the hook big time, and Ford also. And I think there may be substantial punitive damages, although at this point it does not look like Ford is on the hook for punitives…. I think Ford’s corporate response has been generally admirable, and I say this with no ties to Ford or to Firestone/Bridgestone. It does seem to me that Firestone/Bridgestone was lackadaisical, that its indifference to investors is going to play very badly if ever this comes before a jury.”

Sunday, Sept. 10, Washington Post

Close to Home: The Standard Is Superior

By James Metcalf, a professor in the College of Nursing and Health Sciences at George Mason University and a member of the faculty senate’s ad hoc committee on general education.

“Why do engineers have to study poetry, or literature or history? What’s the point of required science for dance majors or required humanities for nursing majors? Such questions are being debated by both the board of visitors and the faculty senate at George Mason University (GMU)…. One component of general education at GMU, English composition, already has been compromised, with some schools allowing non-native speakers to take alternative courses in English composition to satisfy the baccalaureate requirement. That should change…. I concede that nonstandard dialects are wonderfully expressive and that English is difficult, especially as a second language. Still, without mastery of our language, all else is reduced. English composition–I say, serve it up rigorously and in massive doses. That is where general education begins.”

Tuesday, Sept. 12, Australian Financial Review

Protest Is Winning Argument

“The growing international protest against globalization is wrong about economics but is winning the political argument regardless, according to Professor Francis Fukuyama. The leading U.S. academic, author of the pivotal work The End of History, said the defenders of globalization were relying on the weight of their economic arguments, but this was not enough. ‘This is an area where we could do with a lot of leadership right now but we’re not getting it,’ said Professor Fukuyama, a former policy analyst at the U.S. State Department who now teaches international business at George Mason University in Washington, D.C. ‘The reason is that all the free-trade economists, although they may be intellectually right on a certain level, are really unrealistic if they think that economic efficiency is going to trump all these political considerations.'”

Tuesday, Sept. 12, CNET

Will P2P Companies Thrive or Die?

“Roughly 90 percent of America’s computer capacity is idle at some point during the day, especially when people turn off the machine and go home for the evening, said Danny Menasce, professor of computer science at George Mason University in Fairfax, Va. P2P technology could allow companies to tap into others’ computing resources, provided people leave their computers turned on. Companies that provide the software to enable this could make money on the software itself and possibly charge people to ‘rent’ the computing capacity of others…. ‘If people were able to share cycles and bid in auctions for these cycles, that could be very profitable,’ Menasce said. ‘Many companies could then defer buying large supercomputers or mainframes if they could buy computing cycles on the Internet.'”

Tuesday, Sept. 12, Boston Globe

Born in the Fire: Evidence Mounts that Life May Have Begun in a Scalding Toxic Bath

“New evidence, including a recent report in the journal Science, is lending support to a controversial theory that these vents at the bottom of the world’s oceans may have been the cradle in which life began…. ‘People laughed at [John B.] Corliss when he first mentioned it,’ said Harold Morowitz, a biochemist at George Mason University in Virginia. ‘I’m the first to have taken him seriously…. Now it’s coming into the mainstream.’… As Morowitz describes it, the competing theories were based on where the energy came from to spark life on Earth: Did it come from the heat and light coming down from the sun–from the heavens–or from chemical energy percolating up from the hot depths of the Earth–from hell? ‘Everyone heavily favored the “heaven” concept’ at first, he said.”

Tuesday, Sept. 12, Times Union (Albany, N.Y.)

Legal Assistance in a High-Tech World

“Founded in 1998, the Science and Technology Law Center was established to offer legal services and advice to emerging tech businesses, and to attract new entrepreneurs and startup companies to the state. While only a handful of similar centers exists around the country–George Mason University in Virginia houses one of the most prominent and heavily funded–Albany Law School’s center is the lone program in New York, giving it the responsibility of serving not only the Capital Region, but Buffalo, Rochester and New York City, Provorny said.”

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