Mark Levin Reminds Americans That Values Count
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To develop our plans for the fall, we have convened a Scenario Planning Task Force made up of representatives across the major areas of our campus. Their planning has been guided by the latest medical information, government directives, direct input from our rabbis, faculty and students, and best practices from industry and university leaders across the country. I am deeply thankful to our task force members and all who supported them for their tireless work in addressing the myriad details involved in bringing students back to campus and restarting our educational enterprise.In concert with the recommendations from our task force, I am announcing today that our fall semester will reflect a hybrid model. It will allow many students to return in a careful way by incorporating online and virtual learning with on-campus classroom instruction. It also enables students who prefer to not be on campus to have a rich student experience by continuing their studies online and benefitting from a full range of online student services and extracurricular programs.In bringing our students back to campus, safety is our first priority. Many aspects of campus life will change for this coming semester. Gatherings will be limited, larger courses will move completely online. Throughout campus everyone will need to adhere to our medical guidelines, including social distancing, wearing facemasks, and our testing and contact tracing policies. Due to our focus on minimizing risk, our undergraduate students will begin the first few weeks of the fall semester online and move onto the campus after the Jewish holidays. This schedule will limit the amount of back and forth travel for our students by concentrating the on-campus component of the fall semester to one consecutive segment.Throughout our planning, we have used the analogy of a dimmer switch. Reopening our campuses will not be a simple binary, like an on/off light switch, but more like a dimmer in which we have the flexibility to scale backwards and forwards to properly respond as the health situation evolves. It is very possible that some plans could change, depending upon the progression of the virus and/or applicable state and local government guidance.Before our semester begins, we will provide more updates reflecting our most current guidance. Please check our website, yu.edu/fall2020 for regular updates. We understand that even after reading through this guide, you might have many additional questions, so we will be posting an extensive FAQ section online as well. Additionally, we will also be holding community calls for faculty, students, staff and parents over the next couple of months.Planning for the future during this moment has certainly been humbling. This Coronavirus has reminded us time and time again of the lessons from our Jewish tradition that we are not in full control of our circumstances. But our tradition also teaches us that we are in control of our response to our circumstances. Next semester will present significant challenges and changes. There will be some compromises and minor inconveniences--not every issue has a perfect solution. But faith and fortitude, mutual cooperation and resilience are essential life lessons that are accentuated during this period. And if we all commit to respond with graciousness, kindness, and love, we can transform new campus realities into profound life lessons for our future.Deeply rooted in our Jewish values and forward focused in preparing for the careers and competencies of the future, we journey together with you, our Yeshiva University community, through these uncharted waters. Next year will be a formative year in the lives of our students, and together we will rise to the moment so that our students will emerge stronger and better prepared to be leaders of the world of tomorrow.
In his A Holy Baptism of Fire and Blood: The Bible and the American Civil War, James P. Byrd gifts readers with another comprehensively chronicled and extensively analyzed survey of how Americans, in the country's earliest decades, were politically inspired by the Bible. Byrd, a professor of American religious history at Vanderbilt University Divinity School, previously authored Sacred Scripture, Sacred War: The Bible and the American Revolution. In his latest, he offers the first full-length treatment of what Abraham Lincoln meant when, in his Second Inaugural Address, he remarked that both sides of the Civil War "read the same Bible and pray to the same God, and each invokes His aid against the other."
During this early period, the new central bank did make an important addition to its menu of policy tools. Initially, the Fed's main tools were the quantity of its lending through the discount window and the interest rate at which it lent, the discount rate. Early on, however, to generate earnings to finance its operations, the Federal Reserve began purchasing government securities in the open market--what came to be known as open market operations. In the early 1920s, Fed officials discovered that these operations affected the supply and cost of bank reserves and, consequently, the terms on which banks extended credit to their customers. Subsequently, of course, open market operations became a principal monetary policy tool, one that allowed the Fed to interact with the broader financial markets, not only with banks.11
These reforms, while well-intentioned, leave unaddressed an especially harmful form of bias, which remains entrenched within law enforcement: explicit racism. Explicit racism in law enforcement takes many forms, from membership or affiliation with violent white supremacist or far-right militant groups, to engaging in racially discriminatory behavior toward the public or law enforcement colleagues, to making racist remarks and sharing them on social media. While it is widely acknowledged that racist officers subsist within police departments around the country, federal, state, and local governments are doing far too little to proactively identify them, report their behavior to prosecutors who might unwittingly rely on their testimony in criminal cases, or protect the diverse communities they are sworn to serve.
Technology companies that provided free services to schools also benefited, gaining significant market share as millions of students became familiar with their product. Zoom Video Communications, which provided free services to more than 125,000 schools in 25 countries, as well as limited free services for the general public, reported its sales skyrocketing 326 percent to $2.7 billion and its profits propelled from $21.7 million in 2019 to $671.5 million in 2020.
Mathematical research is similar to solving puzzles, with the added excitement that nobody knows the solution, and that finding it sometimes gives a better understanding of related problems in other disciplines. It can be frustrating at times, when promising ideas lead to dead ends, but that makes the satisfaction of solving an open problem even greater. My main field of research is enumerative combinatorics, an area of mathematics that studies properties of discrete structures and counts in how many ways they can be formed. Combinatorial questions appear throughout mathematics, and also arise in other disciplines, such as computer science, biology, and physics. This summer, I organized two week-long international conferences in combinatorics at Dartmouth, bringing together more than 300 participants from 30 countries. The financial and administrative support from Dartmouth was essential to the success of the conferences. In addition to the institutional support for faculty, I enjoy the balance of research and teaching at Dartmouth, and the friendly collegial atmosphere here. I enjoy mentoring research, both at the undergraduate and graduate level, and I love teaching smart and motivated Dartmouth students who are eager to learn. Seeing their reaction when they make new connections reminds me of the enjoyment I had when I learned the same concepts for the first time.
The paradox of backward induction is one of a family of paradoxes thatarise if one builds possession and use of literally completeinformation into a concept of rationality. (Consider, by analogy, thestock market paradox that arises if we suppose that economicallyrational investment incorporates literally rational expectations:assume that no individual investor can beat the market in the long runbecause the market always knows everything the investor knows; then noone has incentive to gather knowledge about asset values; then no onewill ever gather any such information and so from the assumption thatthe market knows everything it follows that the market cannot knowanything!)As we will see in detail in various discussions below, mostapplications of game theory explicitly incorporate uncertainty andprospects for learning by players. The extensive-form games with SPEthat we looked at above are really conceptual tools to help us prepareconcepts for application to situations where complete and perfectinformation is unusual. We cannot avoid the paradox if we think, assome philosophers and normative game theorists do, that one of theconceptual tools we want to use game theory to sharpen is a fullygeneral idea of rationality itself. But this is not a concernentertained by economists and other scientists who put game theory touse in empirical modeling. In real cases, unless players haveexperienced play at equilibrium with one another in the past, even ifthey are all economically rational and all believe this about oneanother, we should predict that they will attach some positiveprobability to the conjecture that understanding of game structuresamong some players is imperfect. This then explains why people, evenif they are economically rational agents, may often, or even usually,play as if they believe in trembling hands. 2b1af7f3a8