I was talking with a colleague about the most relevant movie to watch these days. As readers here know, the outbreak of elected officials letting power go to their heads led me to designate Woody Allen’s “Bananas” for that honor. (And yesterday I posited the relevance of “Airplane!” )Still, it’s hard to argue against my friend’s position that the right choice is “Groundhog Day.”
In the interest of sanity, I reject “Contagion” and especially “World War Z” or “Quaranteen.” (All good movies though.)
1. Right now it’s turned face to the wall, but today I’m putting a sheet over it…My college diploma becomes more embarrassing by the day. Harvard University has accepted nearly $9 million from the pandemic relief package. With a 40 billion dollar dollar endowment, Harvard is better off financially than the U.S. government.
[Notice of Correction: I wrote “million” instead of billion in the original post. Really stupid typo. I apologize.]
There is no excuse for the school accepting the money. It is getting widely criticized for taking it, and ought to be.
A spokesman for the U.S. Department of Education said ithat Education Secretary Betsy DeVos “shares the concern that sending millions to schools with significant endowments is a poor use of taxpayer money. In her letter to college and university presidents, Secretary DeVos asked them to determine if their institutions actually need the money and, if not, to send unneeded CARES Act funds to schools in need in their state or region.”
In an episode of Spokesman vs Spokesman, a mouthpiece for the Ivy said, disingenuously,
“By federal formula laid out in the CARES Act, Harvard was allocated $8.6 million, with 50% of those funds to be reserved for grants to students. Harvard is actually allocating 100% of the funds to financial assistance for students to meet their urgent needs in the face of this pandemic. Harvard will allocate the funds based on student financial need. This financial assistance will be on top of the significant support the University has already provided to students — including assistance with travel, providing direct aid for living expenses to those with need, and supporting students’ transition to online education.”
This is an exercise in deflection and rationalization. The only issue is that Harvard has plenty of money to do all of this without any hand-outs from the government, and many other institutions need the money more, which is an easy calculation because no institution needs money less than Harvard does. Continue reading