Quotes, bon mots, and noteworthy utterances from the campus and beyond
19 March 2009
"Make no mistake: Angry right-wing populism lurks just below the surface of the terrible American economy, ready to be launched not only at Obama but also at liberals, intellectuals, gays, blacks, Jews, the mainstream media, coastal elites, crypto-socialists, and any other potential target of paranoid opportunity."
Professor of Public Policy Robert Reich
Salon, March 5
"The analogy on everyone's mind here is the McCarthy era, when professors were harassed and sometimes prosecuted for their outside political endeavors."
Berkeley Law Dean Christopher Edley Jr., on the prospect that Professor of Law John Yoo may face penalties for his role in crafting memos authorizing the torture of suspected terrorists.
Chronicle of Higher Education, March 20
"If I never serve in government again, that would be all right with me."
Professor of Law John Yoo
Orange County Register, March 3
"The fundamental flaw is that we budget each year, not on the basis of how much money we have, but on the basis of how much we believe we will have."
Professor of Business Tom Campbell, speaking in San Diego to members of the California Alumni Association. Campbell suggested that henceforth the state spend only money collected within the past year.
San Diego Union-Tribune, March 4
"What is in it? Is it safe? Where is it from?"
Dara O'Rourke, associate professor of environmental science, policy, and management, citing information on the safety of food products as the "No. 1 request" of visitors to his consumer-information website, GoodGuide.com.
San Francisco Chronicle, March 16
"In essence, this is microbial poop."
Professor of Chemical Engineering Jay Keasling, discussing the fine points of engineering bacteria to produce fuel from sugar with Stephen Colbert.
The Colbert Report, March 10
"As far as public opinion is concerned, I do see this as a vindication.''
Associate Professor of Environmental Science, Policy, and Management Ignacio Chapela, responding to publication of new research supporting his 2001 finding that genetically modified materials may have contaminated native "races" of corn in Mexico.
The New York Times, March 5
"It's ironically reminiscent of the Bush doctrine under which ideology and speculation trump hard evidence."
Professor of Education Bruce Fuller, criticizing President Obama's proposed $131 billion education budget, much of which, he says, "would go for stale federal programs that have long failed to elevate students' learning curves."
San Francisco Chronicle, March 6
"No one actually pays attention to the IPCC."
Professor of Physics Richard Muller, lamenting the disproportionate attention paid to global-warming "exaggerators" like Al Gore and The New York Times' Thomas Friedman.
Forbes.com, March 30