Y’all I am supposed to be in Washington but I came down with some sort of bug (not flu, I am sure) and ended up staying home for two days which gave me some time to catch up on some reading. Have been reading several interesting books — “The Art and Politics of Science” by Harold Varmus (W.W. Norton, 2009) and “The Man Who Owns the News: Inside the Secret World of Rupert Murdoch,” by Michael Wolff (Broadway Books, 2008). As we all know, Varmus was head of NIH for seven years and is now President of the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, where our friend JoAnne Sparks was the Director of Library Services (did you meet her in Charleston last year?) for five years. By the way, JoAnne is now Assistant Director for Research and Learning Services at Oxford University Library Services (OULS) and plans to be in Charleston this November. Remember Mary Ann Liebert talking about Varmus in her Charleston Conference keynote several year ago. I wonder if she has read/is reading this book? And reading about Rupert Murdoch brought back memories of Robert Maxwell (characterized as Murdoch’s nemesis) who is mentioned more than once usually not in the most complimentary fashion.
Oh! And there was a hopeful sign on the front page of our newspaper Charleston Post and Courier yesterday. Public schools in Charleston County are getting $2 million to build up their library collections! It sounds like there will be print books and electronic reference books. Great news in the midst of the negative. “Schools to bolser library collections,” by Diette Courrege (P&C, 6/22/09, p. A1)