Two weeks ago, I wrote about the 2023 farm bill, which stands to be reauthorized by Congress this fall. The bill, I argued, amounts to unnecessary corporate welfare for large industrial farms who do not need the assistance. Legislators should therefore implement sensible payment caps for farm bill programs to prevent needless and unfair spending. In this article, I want to situate the farm bill within our local New England agricultural context, and in doing so, add more detail to the arguments from my previous piece. Though New England-local agriculture is smaller and less productive than its counterparts in the middle of the country, it offers non-economic benefits to the community it serves that should be supported by the farm bill.
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The senior thesis is, for many students, the culmination of their academic pursuits. Writing a thesis can be an invaluable experience and learning tool, providing students with the opportunity to engage in high-level research, collaborate closely with an academic in their field of interest and publish their own original research. Several members of this Editorial Board are currently pursuing theses. However, we have observed serious obstacles to finding an advisor willing to oversee a thesis. This can be discouraging, if not insurmountable, for students who are seeking to write one. The opportunity to write a thesis should be available to any student who has proven their capability and academic interest, and we believe that departments have the obligation to ensure that no student is denied the opportunity to pursue this academic endeavor. In order to accomplish this, we suggest that thesis directors for each department implement a matching process to pair thesis writers with appropriate mentors. This would ensure that no student who has the potential to write a thesis is denied the opportunity.
Around the country and the world, democratic institutions are decaying at an alarming rate. There is a fundamental lack of faith in political institutions of all kinds, and, looking around, it is easy to buy into that apathy. Many just believe that change is impossible through these systems. I felt the same when I first got to Dartmouth, and I imagine there are a good amount of first-years who do too. That all of this “student advocacy” is simply performative — something you slap on a resume and then call it a day.
At the present moment, trust in traditional institutions is dwindling in the United States. According to a Pew Research poll last July, 54% of Americans hold an unfavorable view of the Supreme Court — the lowest ever since Pew started tracking in 1987. Nonetheless, this disapproval for the Court is not a universally held belief. The same poll indicates that there is a clear gap of approval between Republicans and Democrats. Approximately 68% of Republicans hold favorable views of the Court, while only 24% of Democrats do. This strikes at the core of the issue that has plagued the Supreme Court in recent history: politicization.
Students who walk into Class of 1953 Commons have surely noticed one major change: Near the front of the dining hall, in place of the former sandwich station, is now “The A9” station, which serves food free of all top nine allergens — dairy, egg, fish, peanuts, tree nuts, sesame, shellfish, soy and wheat. This station has been met with a variety of strong opinions, as well as some frustration that it was either unnecessary or insufficient for students whose dietary needs are still not met by the station. As an Editorial Board, we would like to express our view on the matter. Overall, we are excited that Dartmouth Dining has a food station that is more inclusive to students with food allergies, and we are impressed by the empathy and care that Dartmouth Dining puts into providing accommodations for students with dietary restrictions. However, we do have small suggestions to make the station, and Dartmouth Dining as a whole, generally more inclusive.
What is a university? English poet John Masefield said it “is a place where those who hate ignorance may strive to know.” Dartmouth says it is a “voice crying out into the wilderness.” But, in an age where universities have budgets larger than the GDPs — gross domestic product — of many small nations, I take a more practical approach: A university is what it spends money on.
President Beilock’s inauguration marks the beginning of a new era at Dartmouth. We ask: “What is one area or issue that you would like to see College President Sian Leah Beilock address during her first year?”
Dartmouth has finally instituted long overdue changes to its medical leave policy, which has been renamed to the “time away for medical reasons” policy. Some of these changes went into effect immediately, while other provisions will become active in January. These changes are a victory for students and place the College one step closer to an environment that puts the health of its community first. However, there are still major problems with the policy that have not been directly addressed. As an Editorial Board, we would like to review the changes which we believe are worthy of special commendation, but also highlight several concerns that may jeopardize the new policy’s ultimate effectiveness.
Re: Student Government announces updates to overnight infirmary fees and printing
The U.S. farm sector, now a corporatized and industrialized shadow of its nineteenth-century self, receives far too much aid from the federal government. The farm bill, up for reauthorization in Congress this fall, favors large, wealthy farms in its distribution of subsidies. Legislators should implement sensible payment caps on farm bill programs to limit wasteful spending on industrial farms that do not need assistance.
On Sunday, Sept. 10, our team came together and decided to sign representation cards with the Dartmouth staff union, SEIU Local 560. It is our intention to use this column to describe our common motivation for pursuing unionization, which is rooted not only in a desire to improve our own working conditions, but also in a hope of catalyzing the transformation of college sports into a less exploitative business.
With the advent of low-cost artificial intelligence tools, public interest in artificial intelligence generated content has skyrocketed. Anyone — from preteens to senior campaign staffers — can now create complex, personalized audio, images and text by simply entering keywords into AI content creation tools. The result is an easily accessible weapon in spreading disinformation created to manipulate the public. Thus, the U.S. must mandate that AI content creation tools mark their content with a direct disclosure watermark, with legal repercussions if users modify or remove the watermark. Failure to quickly regulate AI-generated content will overwhelm private institutions’ ability to prevent disinformation and further erode trust in politics.
In the first 2024 Republican presidential primary debate on Aug. 23, a Gen Z audience member asked candidates how they would calm young peoples’ fears that the GOP doesn’t care about climate change. However, few candidates directly answered the question. While most candidates have acknowledged the reality of climate change, former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley was the only one to do so onstage.
There are two reasons why I titled this column after Dartmouth’s former alma mater, Men of Dartmouth. First, it is a salutation to those it is primarily addressed to: men of Dartmouth. Second, it is a conceit whose relevance I hope to demonstrate shortly.
On June 29, in the landmark case Students for Fair Admissions v. Harvard University and the University of North Carolina, the Supreme Court voted 6-3 in favor of SFFA — effectively outlawing race-based affirmative action in admissions at colleges receiving federal funding. This decision was nothing less than inexorable, yet conservative justices touted the Harvard decision as a watershed moment in the restoration of core American values in college admissions, eulogizing the supposed victory for egalitarianism and meritocracy. Nonetheless, the decision has ignited discussion about another, far older admissions practice, equally controversial yet hitherto untouched by the nation’s highest court: legacy admissions. The practice involves preferential treatment for the children of alumni in admissions — 65% of whom come from families in the top 5% income bracket — or in other words, affirmative action for the rich and powerful.