THE R. KELLY PRINCIPLE

Posted in Quick Hits on July 30th, 2013 by Ed

A few things for today:

1. The soundest advice I give to students is: Never buy cheap toilet paper. The cost of failure is high; spend the extra dollar. The second most important thing I can impart is what I like to call the R. Kelly Principle: If you're going to commit a felony, don't make a video of yourself doing it. Or take pictures. Or make an audio recording. Or leave a lengthy paper trail. Basically, don't create mountains of damning evidence that will be used against you.

If only the former Indiana education commissioner Tony Bennett and his staff had taken my classes they might have known better than to write dozens of baldly incriminating emails about rigging their bullshit-reeking school "grading system" to help out a big money Republican donor (and noted charter school pimp/profiteer) whose school had earned a lousy grade. At the very least they might have learned not to do it on government email accounts, for christ's sake.

2. Here's a good spleen-venting rant about how the modern GOP lacks the intellectual consistency required to have their style qualify as paranoid.

3. Ask any cop or lawyer you know who has experience with criminal cases – "Some black guys did it" is a remarkably common statement from people trying to avoid suspicion during investigations. And it probably works pretty often, too. Fortunately in this case, which involved the murder of a child, the physical evidence was examined thoroughly. Race baiting is telling people that they can't commit crimes and blame it on "black kids."

4. Does it ever seem like the only problems successfully solved by the tecnho-wizardry of the Creative Class – Silicon Valley types and the venture capitalists who fuel them – are the "problems" of being a multimillionaire 30-something Silicon Valley/Venture Capitalist type? As George Packer put it, "It suddenly occurred to me that the hottest tech start-ups are solving all the problems of being twenty years old, with cash on hand, because that’s who thinks them up." What a wonderful world they're creating!

For themselves.