Saturday, May 07, 2005

As I predicted: Blunkett is back!!!

The end of the semester wasn't so much hell as prolonged tedium. For me it meant one last chance to cram a few more research interviews in. My curriculum writing project after dragging on FOREVER led to a conceptual breakthrough earlier on this year. I decided to base the first semester on a series of provocative questions based around the concept of an object falling freely.

For years I had been puzzled as to how Newton could have understood so much from the story of the apple dropping on his head. After a little bit of head scratching, I managed to use just a) the concept of center of mass b) dimensional measurements of distance, time, and mass and c)the observation of an object freely falling in order to derive basic mechanics in physics from parabolic motion to circular motion to everything inbetween.

Needless to say being able to report that we have such a promising approach and one not typical to textbooks but quite sound and traditional should reassure those guys down at NSF greatly.

There was one bit of news which I would like to gloat over. It turns out Blunkett is back.

Michael White, political editor
Saturday May 7, 2005
The Guardian

David Blunkett last night returned to the cabinet table with one of the hardest jobs Tony Blair could offer him, as a reforming works and pensions secretary who must tackle the thorny problems of invalidity and provision for old age.

Four months after resigning as home secretary after his affair with the publisher Kimberly Quinn, Mr Blunkett's appointment came in a reshuffle which saw the newly re-elected prime minister struggling to make his plans fit the colleagues he has at his disposal.

Earlier I had predicted Blunkett would have a brief vacation and then they would bring him back. So they did. So much for all that hand-wringing over his "resignation". A four month break from government is more like a unpaid extended vacation or personal leave than it is a resignation and "exile".

I'm sure it didn't hurt either that it turned out quite publicly and disasterously that his ex-girlfriend Miss Quinn turned out to be on quite tabloid terms displaying behavior of quite outrageous and salacious a nature. When the person smearing you turns up to be stinking to high heaven of lies and deceptions, then well I guess people take the charges less seriously. I reiterate my position that it is not the affair I mind in this mess, but the appalling and immature behavior on the part of the people involved.

So like I said, Blunkett is back. Blair interestinly has been chastised and that is all to the better. He will be a better Prime Minister for it as well.