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DSU History and Ethics Forum Hosts Wilson Speech on Recruiting Tech Workers

Dakota State University holds its second Great White Conservative Intellectuals lecture this evening with Dr. Heather Wilson, former Republican U.S. Representative from New Mexico, School of Mines president, and Air Force Secretary, now president of the University of Texas at El Paso, presenting to the DSU History and Ethics Forum a speech on “Expanding the Cyber-Security Workforce“.

Wait. Conservative baloney processors Joe Bottum, Jon Lauck, and Ben Jones put this forum together to promote Kristi Noem’s agenda of cowing campus liberals and whitewashing history under the guise of “intellectual diversity”. The least they could do with their History and Ethics Forum is stick with their Hillsdalian pretense of promoting classical education through discussion of great ideas in, I don’t know, History and Ethics. They managed that charade last year, when they brought Hillsdale College prof Bradley Birzer (no, not the one who wrote Noem’s social studies standards) to drone on about the Greeks and classical ideals of liberty in America’s founding. They could have brought Birzer back this year for a stirring discussion of why Christopher Columbus is a great historical figure.

But after a year of planning, the best they could muster is Heather Wilson to deliver a vo-tech speech? How is expanding the workforce in any field, cybersecurity or otherwise, related to great questions of history and ethics?

Organizers wanly assert that Wilson will say something about history and ethics:

“Dr. Wilson will be able to bring a unique perspective to the concept of cyber-security in the workforce, and how we in education can meet that need,” said José-Marie Griffiths, president of DSU.

Wilson can also examine this concept in light of history and ethics. This is why the forum was created in 2021, to look at issues surrounding the computing revolution in the context of history and ethics. Organizers know that to best understand the computer revolution, it needs to be examined in context with history and morality [DSU, press release, Madison Daily Leader, 2022.10.17].

I am skeptical that recruiting more students to work in cybersecurity has much to do with history or ethics or that South Dakota’s college recruiters are steeping their pitches to prospective students in history or ethics. (Hey, kids! Want to be America’s first line of defense against cyberattacks from Russia? Here, read Plato’s Republic and the history of the papacy in the high Middle Ages!) A far more interesting and relevant field for discussion of ethics would be for Wilson to discuss her involvement in ethically questionable lobbying for no-bid federal contracts for Lockheed Martin and the Sandia National Laboratories back in New Mexico.

But sure—go to the Beacom building at 5 p.m. today, listen for any sign that Wilson can follow through on the promise of this lecture series to discuss great ideas rather than the ephemeral demands of an ever-changing economy. But odds are, all you’ll get is Republican conservatives patting each other on the back for another snowjob well done.


  1. Donald Pay 2022-10-21 09:31

    I don’t think there is anyone they could get better at discussing conservative “ethics” than Heather Wilson. She certainly has first-hand experience in the corruption involved in intersectionality between federal and state government funding for conservative causes linked with corporate corruption in modern day America. I mean she was the perfect corporate whore who churned taxpayer money for the corporate crowd so they could profit by failing to clean up the problems that their techno-bamboozling created. That she came to South Dakota in the first place to secretly wed federal dollars to corporate efforts to make the state a nuclear waste dump makes her all the more able to spew the conservative ethical line.

  2. bearcreekbat 2022-10-21 10:14

    Is anyone else offended by the phrase “she was the perfect corporate whore?” Using the terms like “whore” and “slut” strike me as sexist or misogynist. I share the views of this writer:

    Slut. The word cuts through the air like a knife. It makes my ears ring, my stomach turn, and my fists clench. Five little letters that make up such a mighty word. Five little letters that are filled to the brim with our culture’s misogyny. . . .

    . . . Maybe women would be too powerful if they were allowed to be loving, caring, kind, understanding, and sexually empowered, and we wouldn’t want that now would we? Therefore the stigmas remain, and we play along, acting as if we were ‘just the right amount of sexually active and that we don’t really enjoy sex all that much — just as much as you want me to,’ so as to make men feel less threatened and to not be labeled a whore/bitch/slut.

    There are endless instances where women are slut-shamed with the purpose of subordinating and silencing them. Being labeled a slut is a stigma that is very hard to shake off and therefore, is an effective tool to exert power over women. Unfortunately, this power tool still seems to work, as a large part of society is willing to be complicit. It is — and this breaks my heart — not just a tool used by men, but by many women as well. . . .

    Words have power over those they are used against. And words say a lot about ourselves individually. When we choose to use a word we know is hurtful against someone else — what does it really say about us?

    The English language has plenty of non-misogynist terms to criticize Heather Wilson’s ethics. There really is no need to resurrect terms that historically marginalize or hurt women and girls because of their gender.

  3. DaveFN 2022-10-21 11:06

    “A far more interesting and relevant field for discussion of ethics would be for Wilson to discuss her involvement in ethically questionable lobbying for no-bid federal contracts for Lockheed Martin and the Sandia National Laboratories back in New Mexico.”

    Copy that.

  4. mike from iowa 2022-10-21 11:29

    Slut is a 5 lettered word? Did I miss something?

  5. bearcreekbat 2022-10-21 11:48

    mfi, IMO the author was referring to the plural form.

  6. ska sunka 2022-10-21 12:49

    In all fairness, Birzer’s talk last year was chock full of philosophical concepts and hardly partisan. The real BS came from one or two audience members.

  7. mike from iowa 2022-10-21 13:26

    Thanks, bcb.

  8. Donald Pay 2022-10-21 15:10

    BCB, the word “whore,” as I used it, applies to all genders. From Merriam-Webster we have this: “…2 · to pursue a faithless, unworthy, or idolatrous desire.” I use “whore” in this way for males as well as females. Anyone who whores themselves to a corporate interest that is not in the interest of the general public deserves the appellation.

  9. bearcreekbat 2022-10-21 16:56

    Donald, I have no doubt that you meant nothing derogative or misogynist toward women by using the term “whore” in this comment as well as your earlier use of the term “slut” in another recent comment on a DFP story. I note that Merriam-Webster lists the several additonal definitions of “whore” including “a promiscuous or immoral woman. It also lists only the following synonyms: “bawd, call girl, cocotte, courtesan, drab, hooker, hustler, prostitute, sex worker, streetwalker, tart”

    My point is that words like “whore” and “slut” carry extremely offensive connotations, whether or not the user is aware of that or intends it. The term marginalizes women and girls and certainly tends to re-enforce some readers hateful view of women and girls. Given these circumstances I would discourage unnecessarily using that term and others like it even if one of the definitions might not be as offensive as most others.

  10. Donald Pay 2022-10-21 17:10

    BCB, words don’t marginalize. How words are used may marginalize people. In this regard, i intended to marginalize the likes of Heather Wilson, not because she has sex for money, but because she screws the rest of us for money.

    There are, as you state, plenty of synonyms for “whore.” Which one should I use? I tell you what I’ll do. I’ll call her “a rose,” because a whore by any other name would still be screwing people for money.

  11. P. Aitch 2022-10-21 18:04

    Well said and fully agreed with, BCB. There are millions of words that don’t denigrate women and it’s disrespectful to choose those that obviously do. No backstroking can salve that whore and slut refer to women and have for over a hundred years.

  12. bearcreekbat 2022-10-21 18:25

    Donald, I thought perhaps using the term “mercenary” could have been a reasonable alternative to “whore” that could have clearly conveyed your message in a non-sexist manner. Meriam-Webster offers this definition: “serving merely for pay or sordid advantage : VENAL also : GREEDY.”

    Thanks for the support, P.

  13. Mark Anderson 2022-10-21 19:46

    Come on boys, I finally got my mint copy of Claus Sluter today. Nothing wrong with it. Last year I got my Michael Pacher book. It was mint too.

  14. DaveFN 2022-10-21 23:17

    Words most certainly have locutionary force, there can be no doubt, be it from the standpoint of the illocutionary or the perlocutionary.

    Without the lens of etymology, however, most of us have a flattened out and superficial, canned, stereotyped and constrained understanding of what words are, have meant, and might currently mean, however.


    whore (n.):

    1530s spelling alteration (see wh-) of Middle English hore, from Old English hore “prostitute, harlot,” from Proto-Germanic *hōran-, fem. *hōrā- (source also of Old Frisian hor “fornication,” Old Norse hora “adulteress,” Danish hore, Swedish hora, Dutch hoer, Old High German huora “prostitute;” in Gothic only in the masc. hors “adulterer, fornicator,” also as a verb, horinon “commit adultery”), probably etymologically “one who desires,” from PIE root *ka- “to like, desire,” which in other languages has produced words for “lover; friend.”

    Whore itself is perhaps a Germanic euphemism for a word that has not survived. The Old English vowel naturally would have yielded *hoor, which is the pronunciation in some dialects; it might have shifted by influence of Middle English homonym hore “physical filth, slime,” also “moral corruption, sin,” from Old English horh. The wh- form became current 16c. A general term of abuse for an unchaste or lewd woman (without regard to money) from at least c. 1200. Of male prostitutes from 1630s. Whore of Babylon is from Revelation xvii.1, 5, etc. In Middle English with occasional plural forms horen, heoranna.

    The word, with its derivatives, is now avoided polite speech; its survival in literature, so as it survives, is due to the fact that it is a favorite word with Shakspeare (who uses it, with its derivatives, 99 times) and is common in the authorized English version of the Bible … though the American revisers recommended the substitution of harlot as less gross …. [Century Dictionary]
    Some equivalent words in other languages also derive from sources not originally pejorative, such as Bohemian nevestka, diminutive of nevesta “bride;” Dutch deern, German dirne originally “girl, lass, wench;” also perhaps Old French pute, perhaps literally “girl,” fem. of Vulgar Latin *puttus (but perhaps rather from Latin putidus “stinking;” see poontang). Welsh putain “whore” is from French, probably via Middle English. Among other languages, Greek porne “prostitute” is related to pernemi “sell,” with an original notion probably of a female slave sold for prostitution; Latin meretrix is literally “one who earns wages” (source of Irish mertrech, Old English miltestre “whore, prostitute”).

    The vulgar Roman word was scortum, literally “skin, hide.” Another term was lupa, literally “she-wolf” (preserved in Spanish loba, Italian lupa, French louve; see wolf (n.)). And of course there was prostituta, literally “placed in front,” thus “publicly exposed,” from the fem. past participle of prostituere (see prostitute (n.)). Another Old Norse term was skækja, which yielded Danish skøge, Swedish sköka; probably from Middle Low German schoke, which is perhaps from schode “foreskin of a horse’s penis,” perhaps with the sense of “skin” (compare Latin scortum) or perhaps via an intermediary sense of “vagina.” Spanish ramera, Portuguese rameira are from fem. form of ramero “young bird of prey,” literally “little branch,” from ramo “branch.” Breton gast is cognate with Welsh gast “bitch,” of uncertain origin. Compare also strumpet, harlot.

    Old Church Slavonic ljubodejica is from ljuby dejati “fornicate,” a compound from ljuby “love” + dejati “put, perform.” Russian bljad “whore” derives from Old Church Slavonic bladinica, from bladu “fornication.” Polish nierządnica is literally “disorderly woman.” Sanskrit vecya is a derivation of veca- “house, dwelling,” especially “house of ill-repute, brothel.” Another term, pumccali, means literally “one who runs after men.” Avestan jahika is literally “woman,” but only of evil creatures; another term is kunairi, from pejorative prefix ku- + nairi “woman.”

    And slut:

    slut (n.):

    c. 1400, “a dirty, slovenly, or untidy woman,” according to OED “Of doubtful origin,” but probably cognate with dialectal German Schlutt “slovenly woman,” dialectal Swedish slata “idle woman, slut,” and Dutch slodde “slut,” slodder “a careless man,” but the exact relationship of all these is obscure. Chaucer uses sluttish (late 14c.) in reference to the appearance of an untidy man. Also “a kitchen maid, a drudge” (mid-15c.; hard pieces in a bread loaf from imperfect kneading were called slut’s pennies, 18c.).

    Specific modern sense of “woman who enjoys sex in a degree considered shamefully excessive” is by 1966. Meaning “woman of loose character, bold hussy” is attested from mid-15c., but the primary association through 18c. was untidiness. Johnson has it (second definition) as “A word of slight contempt to a woman” but sexual activity does not seem to figure into his examples. Playful use of the word, without implication of messiness or loose morals, is attested by 1660s:

    My wife called up the people to washing by four o’clock in the morning; and our little girl Susan is a most admirable slut, and pleases us mightily, doing more service than both the others, and deserves wages better. [Pepys, diary, Feb. 21, 1664]
    Compare playful use of scamp, etc., for boys. Sometimes used 19c. as a euphemism for bitch to describe a female dog.

    There is a group of North Sea Germanic words in sl- that mean “sloppy,” and also “slovenly woman” and, less often, “slovenly man,” and that tend to evolve toward “woman of loose morals.” Compare slattern, also English dialectal slummock “a dirty, untidy, or slovenly person” (1861), variant of slammacks “slatternly woman,” said to be from slam “ill-shaped, shambling fellow.” Also slammakin (from 1756 as a type of loose gown; 1785 as “slovenly female,” 1727 as a character name in Gay’s “Beggar’s Opera”), with variants slamkin, slammerkin. Also possibly related are Middle Dutch slore “a sluttish woman,” Dutch slomp, German schlampe “a slattern.”

    A diachronic analysis of words = in terms of historical usage has a way of informing us whereas synchrony in terms of superficial and current banter leaves us wanting and leads us astray in our own subjective realities, limited as those realities are.

  15. DaveFN 2022-10-21 23:33

    “Men who have an excessive faith in their theories or in their ideas [or in the exactitude of the meanings of their words, as far as that goes] are not only poorly disposed to make discoveries but they also make very poor observations.”

    –Claude Bernard, Introduction a L’etude de la Medecine Experimentale (Paris, 1865)

  16. All Mammal 2022-10-21 23:50

    My mother referred to Governor Noem as a dirty leg earlier:/ she covered her mouth with both hands after she said it….I learned something new today.
    The rough sound men make phonetically when they say slut and whore and b!tch is special. It sure gets the hackles up. They say it with such disdain. It physically debases and degrades females in earshot. Intended or not. It does. The s-word, w-word, and b-word are precursors on the continuum of violence.

  17. All Mammal 2022-10-22 01:27

    Mr. Pay- I would have fully agreed with BCB if the comment had been made by any person other than you(: I feel what you intended and don’t think wording it any differently would have quite conveyed your expression exactly. For example, exchanging or eliminating derogatory words from Mark Twain’s Tom Sawyer would have robbed entire emotions from ever being felt in the reader’s chest. Censoring the author doesn’t have the effect he intended. And censoring artists is a travesty.

    Yet, on the other hand, BCB is standing up for women like my dad always would. Yeah, my whole family cusses, but my dad never failed to remind my brothers, “For chrissakes, not in front of your mother.” I rarely mind being regarded for being a woman. We are sensitive and that is ok. It should be taken into consideration by gentlemen.

    For solid perspective, think of the definition of the N-word. It has nothing to do with race. You still would never use it purely for it’s unadulterated meaning, as DaveFN sort of alludes to (I think). You would find another word because the integrity of the word is forever hateful.

    At least as long as there is misogyny and racism, certain words you would like to use to convey your message accurately will have to be abridged. Unless you do not care if your selection of specific words hurt people…Like I said, it depends on the person saying the demeaning word and their tone while saying it that determines the emotion it evokes. With the power invested in me by absolutely nobody, I now pronounce you ALL right on this one:O

  18. grudznick 2022-10-22 06:44

    I enjoy the rough sound woman make when they say

    dirty leg

    It’s exhiarating.

  19. Bonnie B Fairbank 2022-10-22 06:48

    Well, bummer. “corporate whore” is so alliterative AND descriptive.

  20. P. Aitch 2022-10-22 14:52

    grudznick is fully disgusting and ain’t no dirty logan.

  21. Bonnie B Fairbank 2022-10-22 15:26

    Frankly, I’ve no idea what “dirty leg” or “exhiarting” mean, and I ain’t gonna look them up. My search history is too, totally, trashy nasty the way it is.

  22. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2022-10-23 08:13

    Ska, you attended last year’s forum with Birzer? Interesting. Did you catch Wilson’s speech Friday? I’m having trouble finding any mention of the Friday forum on DSU’s social media.

  23. mike from iowa 2022-10-23 08:58

    As I tried to report yesterday, a slut by any other name could still burn you.

    In England and Ireland, sluts were also rags dipped in lard and used in place of candles, and by the 19th century, the word had also come to mean a female dog. Thackerey used the word in that sense, and so did Washington Irving.

  24. RST Tribal Member 2022-10-23 13:23

    I liked Donald Pay’s post. His command of the English language is beyond words. The descriptive adjective used caused less broad minded inept inbreeds to run to the right.

    When Noem states on TV she has balls not a peep. When 45 brags he grabs women in her reproductive body parts. First the RINO Thune said foul then changed his political position to great guy need more like him. The political right turned their spineless backs to their women folks like that Senator from TX when his wife had an adjective used by a republican seeking high office describing her. Not a word. Even the local women with balls fell silent.

    The English language has been used against Native people from time immemorial. A word here, a comma there causing the US Supreme Court in 2008 to say, The ordinary meaning of “now,” as understood at the time of enactment, was at “the present time; at this moment; at the time of speaking.” That definition is consistent with interpretations given “now” by this Court both before and after the IRA’s passage. Now meant yesteryear not this moment.(

  25. John 2022-10-27 04:31

    Back to worker recruitment.
    Immigration is the only way to create 20-40 year old workers out of thin air.
    South Dakota’s only chance is recruiting workers from regions that still have high (as in too high) human reproduction – parts of Central and South America and sub-Saharan Africa. Why? That’s the general South Dakota economic model to not pay a living wage. Folks from those regions believe that South Dakota is a step up from their current living conditions.

    The other option, pursued very successfully by Canada, is tightly controlled immigration by merit – or only accepting immigrants from those who demonstrated being highly successful.
    Hans Rolsing’s book, Factfulness, and his enjoyable YouTube videos laid bare the science of human population growth over a decade ago. The human population is soon to decline – of it’s own accord. The population decline will create economic chaos.

    The infinite growth model is the same model used by the cancer cell.

  26. John 2022-10-27 04:32


  27. P. Aitch 2022-10-27 04:43

    John’s article is quite thought provoking. It plus the shift to “states rights” makes me glad I live in a state that is warmly welcoming to immigrants.
    States Rights will quickly separate winners from those states who, through their own “white fear”, seal and solidify a path to poverty.

  28. John 2022-10-27 11:51

    Intelligent, thought provoking discussion on the de-populaion bomb. 1 hour. (with a bit of Hoover/American Enterprise political nonsense that doesn’t change the math).

    ‘Since 2008 the US is on an accelerating escalator of having a birth rate below the population replacement level. COVID didn’t rush everyone into the bedroom to have more babies – it had the opposite effect. The US is on track to having births at 20% below the population replacement level for each succeeding generation.’
    ‘The US doesn’t know how to be country without population growth.’ Think real estate, banking, borrowing . . . there’s a tie to population growth and economic activity.’ ‘The reason for the initial population growth was a health explosion: we didn’t have more folks, we stopped dying like flies.’

    ‘The math of US population growth is the math of immigration . . . immigration tanked in the US as seen in unfilled job openings.’
    ‘Between the end of the Civil War and late 1970s, the US almost always the global leader in education attainment. But over the past two decades adult educational attainment has been advancing at scarcely a third of that historical pace even as other countries surpassed us.’
    ‘The problem [has been in our face for 40 years – largely unnoticed], similar to the ‘depths of despair’ problem where it took a decade and a half to realize the poor whites were killing themselves in tragic new ways.’ ‘It’s happening with native born American anglo men – highly overlapping trends.’
    ‘We have a ponzi-scheme problem on our hands.’

    Fast pace 30 minutes using flash slides addressing the issues. [Recognize that South Dakota in 2019 had a replacement birthrate. Before you celebrate, recognize that was likely due to two demographics that are not moving to take jobs in FSD or RAP – the nine tribes, and the Hutterites – they are still having kids.]
    The Demographic Drought:

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