Posted by: clholoman | February 10, 2015


I bet you thought this blog was dead. Ha, no! It was only pinin’ for the fjords.

Two topics for your consideration. There has been an exchange between two distinguished scholars in the op/ed pages the last two days and it makes for a fairly painless way to learn some international relations theory, and to see how reasonable people can disagree. The subject is what to do about Ukraine. Yesterday, John Mearsheimer, a noted realist (some would say hawk) made the case for not arming Ukraine in the New York Times. Today, blog fav Dan Drezner over at the WaPo, points out some issues with Mearsheimer’s analysis (and perhaps inconsistencies with M’s own earlier writings, although I’m not convinced by that.) (Disclosure:  Mearsheimer was one of my grad school profs, but I was on the other side of IR–political economy rather than security studies.) I don’t know where I come down on this yet, but it’s fascinating both as a case study in progress and, unfortunately, because the stakes are pretty high, I think.

Second, I must pay tribute to Dean Smith. To those of us of a certain age living in North Carolina, much less for those of us who attended UNC, Coach Smith was one of the towering figures. Lots of amazing words written, but here are three excellent ones:

A terrific story from a professor.

From Charlie Pierce, one of the better sportswriters working today.

And this one by (Dukie) John Feinstein, with this great quote: “John, you should never be proud of doing the right thing. You should just do the right thing.”

I am glad Coach Smith has found rest.



  1. […] on the What’s So Liberal about Liberal Arts blog from Hilbert Provost Chris Holoman – Surprise! >>>  A post which includes a little international relations and a little college basketball […]

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