by Brian Michael Foote

Image courtesy of Dan Century at

Well, what’s in the news this week?  I’m going to skip the Obama/Romney shadow boxing for now because Lord knows there’s going to be plenty of that in the coming months.  But come on Mittens, show us the money.  I want to know what was in those tax records that made Sarah Palin a better candidate for VP.  Speaking of, can you imagine if they had won?  I don’t mean that in a partisan way, just as a thought experiment.  Take the next two minutes to imagine it.  Like, picture the Arab Spring and then we send Vice President Palin over to Egypt to make sure the Israel/Egypt treaty is going to stand.  I know, right? I know.


Actually I was just writing that to get your blood pressure up because we really do need to freak out a little (but just a little) now.  You might recall several months ago that the CUNY Academic Commons and basically everyone else on the internet pitched in to stop SOPA/PIPA.  For a minute there it looked like we had managed to get an out of touch congress to slow down and think about what was happening.  Things were looking better as late as this month with ACTA failing to be ratified by the EU, essentially stalling international support for similar legislation.  But deep in the heart of Texas, Rep Lamar Smith was busy crafting some new legislation — the Intellectual Property Attache Act or IPAA.  IPAA isn’t nearly as sweeping as SOPA but it is basically a big chunk of that old bill reformatted with an emphasis on influencing foreign countries to create legislation that could help change the internet as we know it.  Though SOPA failed, bills like this could achieve the same result in piecemeal if we don’t stay informed.  Eyes on the road.

Meanwhile on the Commons — CUNY gets some guns!

Or rather, CUNY had some guns and used to shoot them a lot.  I can’t believe College of Staten Island had a rifle club.  I went to Hunter, where was my rifle club?  I think we had a fencing team.  Anybody over at CSI know if they still have the rifle club?  Wait…do we still have the rifles? What other slightly dangerous and yet oddly compelling sports do we have around CUNY?  Archery? Falconry?

Tim Wilson, long time blogger on the site, took the Commons back to its roots with some poetry this week.  For those of you new to the community the Commons had a deep poetry phase especially around Poetry Month that has, sadly, been on the wane.  I know Grindley has been hard at work on some other projects so that leaves you, Tim Wilson, holding down the fort.  New people — write some poems! Blog them!

If you, like me, missed Pete’s Mini Zine Fest at Pete’s Candy Store then be sure to head to Brooklyn College for Brooklyn College Library’s unveiling of the Zine Collection.  I love the blog and after completely missing the BC Zine crew at ZineFest earlier in the spring I can’t wait to check out the collection.  Mark your calenders folks!

Till next week.