Top of the agenda this past week: Gen. David Petraeus *85 *87 is tapped to replace Gen. McChrystal as the Commander of U.S. Forces in Afghanistan. Which got us to thinking – what other Tigers found themselves on the rise this week? And, since we believe in a strictly zero-sum world, which Princetonians have seen their stock tumble faster than BP’s? Here’s our run down of who had the best and worst weeks.
Gen. David Petraeus ’85 ’87
Granted, most people wouldn’t consider being put in charge of a complex, costly, and potentially unwinnable war a “good week.” But David Petraeus is not most people. And from a political standpoint, the pick of Petraeus is furthering talks that there might be a presidential run in his future.
Of course, if a year from now Afghanistan is worse than ever and the General’s press office starts giving freelance reporters from Rolling Stone unfettered access, then we may look back on this week as somewhat inglorious. But for now, Good Week!
Heidi Miller ’74
“Who?” you ask. Well, all you aspiring Wall Street types, listen up:
JP Morgan CEO Jamie Dimon announced last week that Miller would head up the new Global Corporate Bank. Miller is described as Dimon’s confidant and a possible pick to someday run the giant bank.
So, yeah, Good Week.
Ellie Kemper ’02
Arguments in favor of Kemper (known to the uninformed as merely Erin on The Office) being every literary nerd’s dream girl:
1. She writes for McSweeney’s.
2. And The Onion.
3. And she announced this week that she has a contract for a new book she’s writing with her sister.
Sounds like a Good Week to us.
And the unfortunate?
Bob Bradley ’80
The US Men’s National Soccer Team and the quasi-inspirational sports story of the summer came to a screeching halt Saturday as Ghana defeated the Yanks 2-1 in overtime. Technically it’s not that bad of a week, since it also featured the awesome 91′ goal against Algeria that got us in to the round of 16, but Bradley should know that sports fans have fickle memories.
The Americans allowed another early goal in this one, a habit that would make most coaches pull out their hair. Fortunately, that’s never really an issue for Bradley.
Ah, remember the days when there was an unofficially designated “Catholic Seat” on the Supreme Court (you know, the one with the direct line to the Pope?) and we could still count the number of Jewish justices on our thumbs? Well no more, writes the NYT. And, as always, when people are discussing WASPs in generalized terms, Princeton manages to be part of the conversation:
Take Princeton University, a longtime bastion of the Southern Protestant elite in particular. The Princeton of F. Scott Fitzgerald was segregated and exclusive. When Hemingway described Robert Cohn in the opening of “The Sun Also Rises” as a Jew who had been “the middleweight boxing champion of Princeton,” he was using shorthand for a character at once isolated, insecure and pugnacious. As late as 1958, the year of the “dirty bicker” in which Jews were conspicuously excluded from its eating clubs, Princeton could fairly have been seen as a redoubt of all-male Protestant privilege.
In the 1960s, however, Princeton made a conscious decision to change, eventually opening its admissions to urban ethnic minorities and women. That decision has now borne fruit. Astonishingly, the last three Supreme Court nominees — Samuel Alito, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan — are Princeton graduates, from the Classes of 1972, ’76, and ’81, respectively. The appointments of these three justices to replace Protestant predecessors turned the demographic balance of the court.
Princeton University, agent of change!
The Whitman campaign is heating up with attack ads against former California Governor (and current Gubernatorial candidate – we know it’s confusing) Jerry Brown. And one group that’s not a fan of the ads is the Cheezburger Network, owners of internet meme blogs.
Cheezburger founder Ben Huh put up this blog post in response to one of Whitman’s ads that appropriated a screenshot of the Network’s FAIL Blog. It probably won’t be a huge issue for the campaign, but still, not not her best week.
(image sources: telegraph.co.uk, avclub.com, nbc.com, failblog.org)