JES Global Summit: Web Exclusive!

Wednesday, October 31st, 2012 at 1:55 PM
JES Global Summit: Web Exclusive! by Jay Stevens
B. Toy

Cover art by B. Toy. Left to Right: Rev. Barry Lynn, Robert Kirshner, Norm Ornstein, Barry Casselman, David Brooks, Karl Rove, Ira Byock.

Here's your complete guide to the world-class speakers the Jefferson Educational Society has assembled for this year's Global Summit. For more information, visit or call 459.8000.

David Brooks

Tuesday, November 13  7:30 p.m.

"On Paradise Drive: How We Live Now: The More Things Changes The More They Stay the Same "

Brooks is a regular columnist for The New York Times, political analyst for PBS' "News Hour" and NPR's "All Things Considered," and author of several books including "Bobos in Paradise: The New Upper Class and How They Got There" and "The Social Animal: How We Live (And Always Have) in the Future Tense." He's written for the Wall Street Journal and The New Yorker among other noted periodicals, but got his start as a Chicago police reporter. Brooks is the voice of the center-right in politics, and often wrestles with sociology, the American way of life, culture, and the future of the country.


Rev. Barry Lynn

Wednesday, November 14 12:00 p.m.

"A New Definition of Religious Freedom: The Fraud of Fundamentalism"

Lynn is the executive director of Americans United for Separation of Church and State and the host of "Culture Shocks," and a long critic of the rising political power of the religious right and an advocate for preserving religious freedom through the separation of church and state. Lynn was born in Harrisburg and raised in Bethlehem, Pa.


Karl Rove

Wednesday, November 14 7:30 p.m.

"The Future of the Republican Party"

Currently working as a political analyst and op-ed columnist, Rove was the former chief adviser and Whitehouse Deputy Chief of Staff to President George W. Bush. Born on Christmas Day in 1950, Rove has been a gift to the Republican Party as its architect of its recent strategy, and electoral successes. Nicked named "Boy Genius" and "Turd Blossom" by Bush, Rove in 1970 stole the campaign letterhead of Democrat Alan Dixon, then running for state treasurer in Illinois, and sent out invitations to homeless Chicagoans offering "free beer, free food, girls, and a good time" at Dixon's headquarters.

What his critics say: "John Gibson of Fox News says that Karl Rove should be given a medal. I agree: Mr. Rove should receive a medal from the American Political Science Association for his pioneering discoveries about modern American politics. The medal can, if necessary, be delivered to his prison cell."  -- Paul Krugman


Norm Ornstein

Thursday, November 15  12:00 p.m.

"Where Do We Go From Here: Picking Up The Policy Pieces In A Dysfunctional Political System"

Ornstein is the preeminent observer of American politics, writing a weekly column, "Congress Inside Out," for Roll Call, the online newspaper for Washington D.C. insiders, and co-directed the conservative American Enterprise Institute's election reform project. Ornstein has written or co-authored a number of books critical of the nation's political partisanship and Congressional obstructionism, including "The Broken Branch: How Congress is Failing America" and "Even Worse Than it Looks: How the American Constitutional System Collided with the New Politics of Extremism." Ornstein is a friend of Minnesota Senator Al Franken and appeared in Franken's 1999 political satire, "Why Not Me?" as campaign manager for a fictitious Franken presidential run.

What his critics say: “I know Norm Ornstein and [co-author of 'It's Even Worse Than It Looks'] Tom Mann. They are ultra, ultra liberals.” -- Mitch McConnell


Robert Kirshner

Thursday, November 15  7:30 p.m.

"The Runaway Universe: Einstein's Blunder Undone"

Kirshner is the Harvard College Professor of Astronomy and Clowes Professor of Science at Harvard University, and a contributing researcher to the 2011 Nobel-winning team that discovered the expansion of the universe is actually accelerating. Kirshner's book, "The Extravagant Universe," is a gripping account of the discovery. More astounding still is that the Harvard astronomer is likely the only person in Boston that likes the former manager of the Red Sox, Bobby Valentine.

What his critics say: "Do you think you're smarter than Einstein?" -- Robert Kirshner's mother.


Ira Byock

Friday, November 16 12:00 p.m.

Dying Well In America: Giving And Getting The Best Care Possible Through The End Of Life

A doctor of medicine, Byock is the Director of Palliative Medicine at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in Lebanon, New Hampshire. Byock also helped found a hospice-care program for the indigent in Fresno, California, and the Missoula Demonstration Project in Montana that researched the experience of dying people and their families in an effort to improve palliative care nationwide. Byock also wrote books on palliative care -- "Dying Well" and "The Four Things that Matter Most" -- that are used in counseling patients and families to navigate end-of-life care, and his most recent book -- "The Best Care Possible" -- is an argument for transforming the nation's healthcare system to deal with a crisis in end-of-life care.


Barry Casselman

Friday, November 16  7:30pm

The Votes Are In: What's Next For American Politics?

Local boy makes good: Erie's Barry Casselman -- now in Minnesota -- writes a blog as "The Prairie Editor" on presidential and national politics. He's written for publications like "The Weekly Standard," "Politico," The Washington Examiner, Roll Call, and, appeared as political analyst for several local radio stations, and authored "North Star Rising," about important Minnesota political figures. Casselman also attended the Iowa Writer's Workshop and is a fiction-writer and playwright, and published two collections of poetry, entitled, "Rippling Water Sleeve" and "Equilibrium Fingers."

Erie Reader: Vol. 4, No. 23
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Google searching for solution to European Parliament resloution.

Five months after the Supreme Court rules against it, Aereo files for Chapter 11 protection.

House Republicans are suing the President. Where's Edgar Snyder when you need him?

President Obama addressed the nation last night in regards to his new plan for immigration policy, did you tune in? If you didn't we've got you covered. In other news, the CIA is trying to delete all their old emails, and in Iraq and Syria the refugee crisis seems to be getting out of hand. 

Local singer parodies infectious pop song to spread message about controversial topic.


The popular genre-bending cellist and composer brings his distinct brand of indie folk to Erie.

The comedy legend makes his first Erie appearance.

Local organization Pro Wrestling Rampage celebrates its 7th anniversary.

Addressing the future of athletics in the Erie School District.

The imminent closing of Shur-fine on West Eighth Street will result in a food desert.

In 2102, a van and a narrow patch of asphalt changed Bob Sonnenberg’s life permanently.

This crowdfunding program could be the answer Erie needs to foster new businesses.

To invest, or not to invest taxpayer money in the Public Safety Radio System – that is the question.

The Texas-based band brings their metalcore to Basement Transmissions.

The real reason the Republican Party came out on top Nov. 4.