Florida Atlantic University

Celebration, As This “Progressive Professor” Blog Reaches Its 6,000th Posting, After Nearly Ten Years!

Today, June 8, 2018 is a day to celebrate, as this posting you are now reading is the 6,000th posting since the author began this expression of his beliefs and of important historical and political events nearly ten years ago.

In two months and three days (August 11), it will be exactly ten years since my son, David Feinman, knowing my strong knowledge of history, and passion for politics, suggested that I start a blog.

Now, nearly ten years later, my blog not only includes the 6,000 postings, but also many intelligent and contributory comments by my readers and supporters.

It also includes a wide variety of web sites on the right side, as well as all of my History News Network articles, and those reproduced on Time and Newsweek, as well as articles on The Hill website.

Additionally, my C Span events on my Assassinations book, and a wide multitude of radio appearances are included, especially those on WWGH 107.1 FM, Marion, Ohio, over the past year, as well as others on Blog Talk Radio and other sites, and also relevant newspaper articles, and several videos of lectures on Harry Truman, John F. Kennedy, and Lyndon B. Johnson at Florida Atlantic University Lifelong Learning in Jupiter, Florida.

This has been a fascinating and enriching nearly ten years, and I hope to continue to do this blog for many more years.

And I invite all of my readers to continue to contribute their comments and ideas, as they add a lot to this blog!

Major Features On “Progressive Professor” Blog

Many of my readers may not realize, or be paying attention to, the fact that besides commentary on political and historical events, the blog also includes multiple radio interviews, as well as op-eds, relating to my recent book, ASSASSINATIONS, THREATS, AND THE AMERICAN  PRESIDENCY: FROM ANDREW JACKSON TO BARACK OBAMA (Rowman Littlefield Publishers, August 2015).

There are, as of now, 13  interviews on the right side of the blog, which a reader can click on to listen to many of my radio interviews in the past three months.  Additionally, there are 2 op-eds that I have published on the website THEHILL.COM in the past month .  Soon, there will be two C Span videos, one with the author interviewed for an hour by Brian Lamb to be aired on C Span on Sunday, November 29 at 8 pm, 11 pm, and 6 am on Monday, November 30 ; and a lecture and book signing on my book at Florida Atlantic University in Jupiter, Florida, lasting 90 minutes, to be taped on December 8, 2015, and being shown on C Span sometime in January.

There are also, on the right side of the blog, past radio interviews on other current events topics; several newspaper interviews in past years and one from a month ago; and three videos of 90 minute lectures I did at Florida Atlantic University on Harry Truman, John F. Kennedy, and Lyndon B. Johnson in recent times.

There is also a new feature, CONTACT ME, which allows for anyone who is interested in requesting my participation in future lectures, interviews, or scholarly engagements to contact me, and is located on the top of the blog on the right.

Announcement Of Two C Span Events Related To My Book: “Assassinations, Threats, And The American Presidency”!

I am pleased to announce two upcoming events relating to my new book–ASSASSINATIONS, THREATS, AND THE AMERICAN PRESIDENCY: FROM ANDREW JACKSON TO BARACK OBAMA (Rowman Littlefield Publishers, August 2015).

Next week, I will be visiting DC and going to the C Span studios and having a taped full hour interview with Brian Lamb on his Q & A show, which has been interviewing authors for many years, with one author per week, aired on Sunday night on C Span One at 8 pm Eastern, 11 pm Eastern repeated, and 6 am Eastern the next Monday morning.  After being aired, the hour is put on the CSpan.org website permanently for viewing at any time.

Additionally, my lecture and book signing on my book at my university, Florida Atlantic University , at the Lifelong Learning Center in Jupiter, Florida, on Tuesday, December 8 230-4 pm and 4-5 pm book signing will be covered and taped by C Span 2, Book TV, aired at some point later, and then put permanently on the C Span website for viewing at any time.

These are tremendous opportunities for exposure of my book, and I am thrilled and very appreciative of this double blessing!

Seven Years Of “The Progressive Professor”, 4,900 Entries, And Counting!

Today, August 11, marks seven years of “The Progressive Professor”!

Over these seven years, there have been precisely 4,900 entries, with this entry being that number!

It has been fun doing this blog, and I thank those who have read it, continue to read it, and those who have participated and contributed in comments, numbering almost 9,350 in the past seven years.

With my book–“Assassinations, Threats, and the American Presidency: From Andrew Jackson to Barack Obama”, Rowman Littlefield Publishers, coming out on this Saturday, August 15, I will be engaged in publicity on radio, tv/cable, and in print and on the internet, and will share links, both audio and visual, which will be placed on my blog on the right hand side, along with those radio interviews already there in the past, and my video lectures at Florida Atlantic University, Jupiter campus, on the Presidencies of Harry Truman, John F. Kennedy, and Lyndon B. Johnson.

I hope many of my readers will listen and look at these interviews and programs as they are added, and I will be very busy doing lectures and book signings over time, which means there might be days when in travel or being overly occupied, I will not add an entry.

But one can be sure that I will be active on this blog, as it now enters Year Number 8!

So thanks everyone, and hope you will continue to follow me, read me, listen to me, and watch me over the next months and years!

Privatization Of Education And Of Prisons Makes Profit More Important Than Anything Else!

The privatization movement, popular among conservatives and the Republican Party, produces disasters!

It creates charter schools which, only in rare cases, is better than public education, and gives children educators who are less qualified and lower paid. The results of charter schools are not good, based on statistics!

Additionally, for profit education on the university and college level is a boondoggle, ripping off taxpayers, and cheating gullible students who think they can get a degree worth the paper of the diploma, when instead they get inferior or no education, and tremendous debts that impoverish them.

Also, privatization of prisons is a horrendous idea, as the goal is to cut costs, recruit more prisoners, and mistreat those inmates in ways that have been shown to be extremely abusive!

The privatization industry caters to politicians who are willing to promote their unethical, immoral businesses.

An example is the GEO group, one of the worst prison corporations of all, making massive profits, and for awhile, was winning the contract to name the stadium at my institution, Florida Atlantic University, until there were student and staff protests, leading to the removal of the university president, and the cancellation of the contract.

Florida Governor Rick Scott is being catered to by GEO, in order to promote further expansion of their profits in the Sunshine State, an absolutely despicable event, which should be used by Democrats against one of the worst Governors in America!

Education and law enforcement, including prisons, should NEVER be privatized, as it makes profit more important than anything else, and lacks any sense of propriety, ethics, and morals!

D-Day 70 Years Later: Multiple Events Cross One’s Mind

70 years ago today, the Allied troops of many nations, spearheaded by General Dwight D. Eisenhower’s directive, stormed the beaches of Normandy, France, on what came to be known as D Day, the beginning of the liberation of Europe from Adolf Hitler and Nazi Germany in World War II. At least 9,000 Americans and many soldiers of many nations died that day, and their sacrifice is commemorated by the cemeteries that hold their remains.

But June 6 has other meanings, more personally as well.

June 6, 1972, was this author’s D Day, meaning the beginning of what has now been a 42 and counting years as a college professor, retired for three years now, but still teaching part time at Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, Florida.

June 6, 2014 is a day in which the author is in New Orleans, planning to visit the World War II Museum this weekend.

Also, today, June 6, 2014, my son David and daughter in law Stephanie are on their honeymoon, and are close to the site of the beach landings at Normandy.

So June 6 means a lot in many ways to this author, and he salutes the troops who gave their lives at Normandy to allow this nation and the civilized world to have basic freedoms and liberties that we celebrate today and every day!

Five Year Anniversary Of “The Progressive Professor”, And 4,000th Posting!

Today marks exactly five years since the inception of “The Progressive Professor” blog by this author!

It has been a wonderful, fascinating, and fun time expressing my views, opinions, and analyses of the political events of the years since the nomination and election of President Barack Obama as our 44th President.

It has been also an opportunity for this author to discuss and evaluate American historical events and personalities, including a detailed analysis of the Presidency and Vice Presidency, our Presidential elections, and of our Congress and Supreme Court, relating past historical events to our present times.

Along the way, it has been a pleasure to have debate and commentary with many readers, including some who are my “supporters”, and some who have been my ‘rivals” in my views and interpretations of the controversies which have been the subject of discussion on this blog.

And perfect timing, as it turns out on this 5th anniversary of “The Progressive Professor”, this posting is my entry number 4,000, a great accomplishment, considering my other professional responsibilities, as I continue, even in “retirement”, as an Adjunct Professor of History and Political Science at Florida Atlantic University, fortunate to have the opportunity to teach advanced courses on American Political History, American Diplomatic History, FDR and the New Deal Era, America in the 1960s, America Since 1945, The American Presidency, and other courses.

My intention is to continue this blog, writing on it nearly every day, and to continue teaching for many more years, as well as traveling this great country, and particularly, its Presidential sites, which included this summer a total of three visits, to the Museums and Libraries of Bill Clinton, Gerald Ford, and Franklin D. Roosevelt, as well as to the Congressional Visitor Center at the US Capitol and the Supreme Court in Washington, DC.

To this author and blogger, American History and Politics is his passion, and I look forward to many more years of contributing to the profession, and to imparting my views and interpretations to readers, and opening up the eyes and minds of students to the wonderful world of American history, government and politics!

The Growing Greatness Of Franklin D. Roosevelt, As His Renovated Presidential Library Enters Its Second Month!

This author has spent his career, 41 years in college teaching, more intimate with President Franklin D. Roosevelt and his New Deal and World War II policies than with any other historical figure.

Exactly 43 years ago, this author spent time doing research at the FDR Library and Museum in Hyde Park, New York, just outside Poughkeepsie, for his doctoral dissertation, which was completed in 1975, and published in 1981 by The Johns Hopkins University Press under the title: TWILIGHT OF PROGRESSIVISM: THE WESTERN REPUBLICAN SENATORS AND THE NEW DEAL.

This coming fall term, the author will again teach a course on FDR, THE NEW DEAL, AND WORLD WAR II, at Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, Florida.

This author has, therefore, spent his life dedicated to study of FDR, and he has always taught that FDR was the second greatest President to Abraham Lincoln!

This day of this posting, the author is with his younger son at the FDR Library and Museum for the first time in 43 years, and exactly one month after its first renovation since its opening in 1941!

The thrill, the excitement, of this return visit, now as a tourist, not a scholar, is overwhelming, and makes me ever more appreciate the greatness of this man, who did more to change America in domestic and foreign policy than ANY President has ever done, including Abraham Lincoln!

Sure, FDR had his faults and shortcomings, as all Presidents, and really all of us, have, but still he is the most transformational President in American history,and richly deserves constant study and interpretation, which I have, and will continue to do, throughout my life of teaching, scholarship, and blogging!

The Recklessness And Lack Of Responsibility Of Professor James Tracy Of Florida Atlantic University: How Should We React To It?

Professor James Tracy of the Department of Communications at Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, Florida, where this author has been an Adjunct Professor of History and Political Science since 1989, has become the center of a massive controversy in the past few days. Let me inform my readers that I do not know Professor Tracy, have never met him, and did not even know what he looked like until this controversy erupted!

Tracy has claimed that he believes that the Sandy Hook Elementary School Massacre of December 14 in Newtown, Connecticut, was a staged event conjured up by a conspiracy of the Obama Administration in cahoots with the news media and trained actors, and that since there is no released photographic evidence of the riddled bodies of 20 children and six teachers and administrators, therefore the event never happened!

This is obviously a lunatic theory, a conspiracy theory that believes that the government and the news media work together to lie to the American people, and to cause staged events to add to the power of the American government at all levels, in their aim to take away the civil liberties of the American population. It is never explained why the news media would collaborate in such a conspiracy, as criticism of government is a regular situation by the news media all across the country!

Tracy is intellectually dishonest, and in his heart of hearts, he knows that what he has done is horrific, irresponsible, reckless, unforgivable, and only feeds gun fanatics who wish to act in a manner similar to Alex Jones, who went on Piers Morgan’s show on CNN, and ranted and raved about plans to begin another “1776” event, through an armed uprising against government authorities.

Tracy is feeding paranoia, adding his title as a professor to promotion of conspiracy theories, and is undermining respect for our government leadership at all levels. He is acting as a demagogue, a man who incites crazies with his nutty utterances on his blog and in emails.

But the problem is that some would say this man should be fired by the university, which has taken the proper stand to separate themselves from his reckless, irresponsible statements, but point out that his viewpoints are not associated with the university, therefore upholding his First Amendment rights to freedom of speech.

The best thing that could happen, but is unlikely to occur, is that Tracy, a tenured Associate Professor, choose to resign from Florida Atlantic University, but his notoriety makes it unlikely that he would be picked up by another university, and this is his livelihood. Freedom of expression and academic freedom cannot be violated nor abrogated!

So we must be willing to tolerate his outrageous statements in the name of civil liberties, and know that he will certainly be living a life of discomfort for his utterances, and his lack of concern for the harm he is doing to the families of the 20 children and six teachers and administrators who were tragic victims nearly a month ago!

But despite anger, no one should threaten his life, or write hateful emails to this professor, but instead ignore him as quickly as possible, as that is ultimately what Professor Tracy feeds on—attention, although of a negative variety—which makes one wonder about his own mental state, and the hope that he does not have ownership of any guns or other assault weapons!

The Further Decline Of Florida Education Under Rick Scott And A GOP Legislature

Florida is the fourth largest state in population, and will surpass New York in the next decade.

But Florida is operating educationally as a “third world nation”, with constant cuts in education at all levels.

After cutting $1.3 billion in educational funding in the present fiscal year, suddenly Governor Rick Scott, saddled by the lowest public opinion poll support of any Governor in America, came out this year for restoring about $1 billion of the funding lost this past year for education below the college and university level.

But higher education, the passport to the middle class for millions of young people in the state, is being asked to take even further cuts which will cripple the state university and state college system.

State spending is at 2003 levels and there has been a 24 percent cut in funding of higher education since 2008.

Some schools are being asked to take a cut that is draconian, including the University of South Florida in Tampa and Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, and community colleges, now considered state colleges because they offer some bachelors degree programs, are also being harmed, and yet Governor Scott and his party want no or small tuition increases which will decimate the curriculum, and will cause massive layoff of personnel and cuts in services.

Every state is facing crisis in higher education, but Florida is near the bottom of all measurements of academic performance and achievement, and can ill afford the shabby treatment it is being forced to take.

It is shortsighted and fails to consider the future of Florida economically, as without the ability of young people to acquire an education, the long range economic future of Florida is doomed, and this comes as Florida becomes, more than ever, a state with large percentages of minorities, who have no way to advance socially and economically without state commitment to education.

Anyone with any common sense who has children will come to the conclusion to escape the “Sunshine” state if the opportunities for their children continue to be limited, and Florida will languish as one of the most backward states, an image one would think the state would wish to overcome, but not with the conservative, short sighted, and uncaring domination of the Republicans and Governor Rick Scott over the future of the state.