Jan

14

Can we borrow your PR department?

Written by

sdfOn Thursday, Harvard released its 50-year plan for expansion in the Allston neighbourhood (think Manhattanville, except 341 acres instead of 17, Boston instead of New York, and more parking lots than people). It’s long, like 72 pages (even Penn kept theirs to 32!), and Bwog didn’t read the whole thing, but if we were Harvard alums with lots and lots of money, we’d probably give serious thought to sending it Allston’s way.

Why? They’ve got everything planned out to the last street sign, and want all their buildings to be built to LEEDs Gold standard (Columbia hasn’t committed to any LEEDs certifications), and think they can generate 15-20 startup businesses per year. Although it also helps to have about $25 billion on hand to make sure the thing gets finished. But really, we don’t know, because all we can find is pro-Harvard propaganda (OK, and the Crimson).  They’re at a ten-year disadvantage, but maybe the folks up in Low should be taking lessons from their homies in Cambridge anyway.

Also! We knew Barack hated Columbia, but we didn’t know he was such a buzzkill as well.

Also! Have you noticed that the Morton Williams receipts still have “Welcome to the Class of 2008” printed at the bottom? I mean, juniors are great, but ’10 probably would appreciate the open arms a bit more…

Also! The Current wants YOU!

Finally! The Columbia University Model United Nations Conference and Exposition (a.k.a. CMUNCE, a.k.a. seamonkey) is underway, which means there are hordes of coiffed high schoolers running around. Be nice to them, maybe they’ll give you food.

– LBD

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26 Comments

  1. Billy

    Obama was only at Columbia for two year sso in some ways it isn't too surprising a lot people didn't really know him.

  2. Sprinkles  

    I wish he could be our Class Day speaker...

  3. Allston  

    isn't like Manhattanville at all... I lived there for years, it's a crowded and successful student neighborhood, even if it's still pretty grungy.

    Moreso, Harvard's Allston campus is evil with a big "E" -- miles and piles of completely empty streets next to a lively three-decker neighborhood, cutting it off from its bridges and half of the main arteries. It sucks bad.

    • idiot  

      I love how people so easily buy into whatever propaganda groups that would normally fall into their ideological camp put out on issues unrelated to those with which they customarily deal. Most Columbia students are not familiar with the geography and demography of Allston, and this gross mischaracterization of Harvard's plans is only going to radicalize those with a tendency to buy into every conspiracy theory that floats their way.

      Fact: Allston is vast. Parts of it are dense and filled with student apartments. Others are Irish working class. Others are immigrant oriented. The specific area that Harvard wants to build on is mostly light industrial parking lot. There is a small apartment complex on the site that is going to be completely rebuilt by Harvard in the course of the new campus' construction. Harvard is going to weave what are now superblocks of land together with various new streets. It plans to bury the highway along the Charles River with parkland- the same parkland that is now completely publically accessible, and will continue to be.

      Vitriol and misinformation, it seems, are not the exclusive domain of anti-Manhattanville zealots.

      • Dude

        screw that. RESIDENT. I'm aware of the plan (and, in fact, I'm in FAVOR of Manhattanville) and there's, in fact, been a crapload of doubts about what limits Harvard is going to observe. And I, having friggin' EVALUATED this from an informed perspective, came to my f'ing opinion. Claiming anything else is just trolling.

        • really?  

          so why no details and just empty claims of "miles and piles of completely empty streets next to a lively three-decker neighborhood, cutting it off from its bridges and half of the main arteries"?...I want specifics.

  4. Barack is eh  

    John Edwards, please be our Class Day speaker

    • ditto  

      John Edwards actually WOULD be a pretty cool choice.

      • god no  

        how insipid! why is everyone infatuated with this guy? guess what, his southern charm didn't work last time, and it's not going to work this time around either. and what else has he got going for him? reputation as a torts lawyer? support for the iraq war? no thanks. he's a loser with a big smile.

      • North Carolinian  

        Eh, from his tenure as my senator, I think he's pretty overrated. I'm always glad to hear the populist message, but the man himself isn't all that impressive. Down South, we think of him as the type who's 'a little too big for his britches.' A lot of his success has been due to a gift for rhetoric, and he has always had a tendency to exploit tragedy for political gain, most recently his New Orleans campaign kickoff, which was familiar to those of us who remember his incessant campaign speeches about his dead son (who was killed in an unexplained car accident, probably due to high speed and/or alcohol). His main claim to fame before becoming a politician was winning a large punitive judgment in a civil lawsuit against the manufacturer of a pool drain that malfunctioned and caused a young girl to become stuck to the bottom of a swimming pool and have her intestines sucked out. (She survived). Most lawyers would kill for a slam dunk case like that; the medical bills were in the millions and the drain manufacturer was negligent and then totally unremorseful. Anyway, he's a decent candidate, but not quite the role model we ought to look for in a Class Day speaker.

        • Clarification  

          His teenage son, who was driving. The accident report was much more vague than usual, leading to a lot of speculation. Edwards did nothing wrong, and his family of course suffered a terrible loss, but the way he has capitalized upon it is a little off-putting.

    • Jonathan Edwards  

      I would be a better Class Day speaker than John Edwards.

  5. keb

    Can we please get a non-politician for a speaker.

  6. asset  

    at least obama has some columbia connection...so did mccain, by the way (his daughter is c'07). edwards would probably be scared to death of chaining his "moderate" image to this place.

  7. Obama

    This is a serious question: What has Obama done besides write a book and be an ethnic minority (albeit one raised in an extremely privileged environment).

    What legislation has he put forth? All I know about him is that his dad was an African chief and he used to coke in high school

    • hmm  

      he gave a great speech at the 2004 convention, and he opposed the war before it was in the vogue to do so. he's "post-racial" according to some people, which makes him a more "electable" minority. and he's been one of the most impressive commentators whenever he's called on CNN etc.

      it's a good idea to invite a good speaker to be our class day invitee, nicht wahr?

  8. Behold!  

    Top 4 possible Class Day speakers, each w/ a columbia connection and not explicitly political:

    1. J.D. Salinger comes out of seclusion to talk to us.
    2. The best lecturer ever, Richard Bulliet.
    3. Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
    4. Rider Strong.

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