Category Archives: Policy History Association

June 4, 2010, 4:51 pm

Oh, The Joy Of Political History! Day 2 at Policy History Conference

Why do we go to conferences? Most of us end up asking this question, perhaps as we are finishing up a paper or a comment later than we wanted to, or packing hastily the night before a flight that is too early. I was certainly asking myself why I ever leave home for any reason as I contemplated the fact that, for the second morning in a row, I had no hot water at the Holiday Inn. Fortunately it is summer, and becoming chilled first thing has no lasting effects; my spirits were raised even further by unexpectedly locating a branch of Au Bon Pain a block and a half away where I could have a nicer breakfast than I had had yesterday. (“Do you know that the graduate students at Harvard refer to your chain as A Big Pain?” I overheard a senior scholar who was trying to arrange a table for twenty ask the manager conversationally. “No, I didn’t!” the cheerful Midwesterner replied, as if my…

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June 1, 2010, 10:17 am

When The Radical Hits The Road: Dispatches From The Midwest

Big Regional Airport is ever so mildly fogged in. But it is very, very full of post-Memorial Day travelers as I embark on a journey to the Buckeye State for the annual conference of the Policy History Association, where I am to appear on a panel organized in honor of the fabulous Jane DeHart. Yesterday I was cursing myself for having booked a seven a.m. flight since Defending Our Freedoms mandates a 4:30 wake-up time. Never mind the 4 A.M. “courtesy call” from Orbitz telling me that my flight has been delayed twenty-two minutes.

Thank you for that courtesy. I always forget that Orbitz is going to do me the favor of warning me about things that I can’t act on in any way, something that this has particularly bad consequences for early flights. As anyone who uses online travel services know, a delay short of having one’s flight cancelled completely is followed by a cheerful reminder…

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