The Oberlin Review

Trump Reverts to Republican Orthodoxy

Ben Silverman, Columnist

April 28, 2017

Former Breitbart News editor and President Donald Trump’s right-hand man Steve Bannon was ousted from his role on the National Security Council on April 5 and has continued to fall in standing in Trump’s inner circle since then, according to reports from The Hill and Vanity Fair, among others. Recent events have large implications for the remainder of the Trump presidency, as Jared Kushner, Ivanka Trump and other establishment Republicans have replaced Bannon at the president’s side. This changing of the guard has influenced Donald’s recent budget proposals, which include a tax cut disproportionately benefiting the wealthy and a lack of funding for his proposed border wall. The divides within Donald’s circle o...

To Enable Social Mobility, Start Before College

Ben Silverman, Columnist

February 10, 2017

A study by The Equality of Opportunity Project recently featured in The New York Times painted a dramatic picture of the socioeconomic statuses of students in elite colleges and universities: Students from the top economic 1 percent outnumber those from the bottom 60 percent at 38 top U.S. colleges, and most others are barely more equitable. The study is a reminder of the work left to do to expand access to higher education after centuries of restriction to the highest classes. Since the 1960s, there have been a string of measures to encourage socioeconomic diversity in higher education, including affirmative action and the Pell grant for low-income students. But the intentions of the ’60s seem to have been washed...

Trump Reveals True Character in First Debate

Ben Silverman, Contributing Writer

September 30, 2016

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump has confounded the country about his core values. His rambunctious arrival on the scene and subsequent climb in the polls left much of the U.S. confused as to why this particular candidate has slid into the political world. Since his candidacy announcement speech, however, some of his motivations have become clear and illuminated the current nature of the country. On Aug. 17, 2015, The Atlantic published an extensive article titled “Why Do People Support Donald Trump?” It featured articulate letters from Trump supporters elucidating their reasons for supporting him, including a desire for an upheaval of the new cultural hegemony, restoration of the American Dream and fo...

Trump’s Media Monopoly Siphons Populist Energy From Sanders Campaign

September 9, 2016

Republican Nominee Donald Trump’s presidential bid — the big­gest political story of the year — has commanded an unprecedented control of the media cycle. By the end of February 2016, Trump had amassed nearly $2 billion in earned media coverage, which includes social media mentions and any ap­pearances on TV, newspapers and radio. This coverage has been a direct boon for Trump’s campaign and was particularly beneficial during the primaries. His message proliferated quickly and thorough­ly, allowing him to distinguish him­self among the Republican field and reach straight through to the frustrated GOP base. However, the all-Trump media cycle has created a butterfly effect on the rest of the race, with each...

GOP Support of Cruz Signals End of Party

Ben Silverman, Contributing Writer

April 15, 2016

The Republican convention is on the horizon, occurring in our nearest city, Cleveland. In two months, the GOP will try to salvage their lot amid a razed political field. The situation that the party leaders face is one in which they can’t truly win. Currently, the three options for a Republican presidential nominee are extremely weak and arguably unelectable — or, if electable, devastating for the future of the U.S. Ohio Governor John Kasich hasn’t been able to rally votes to win the nomination outright, while businessman Donald Trump would undoubtedly be a stain on the country’s history with his racist, xenophobic and sexist policies and lack of overall political proficiency. Texas Senator Ted Cruz is a mor...

Obama’s Change Absent after Two Terms

Ben Silverman, Contributing Writer

February 19, 2016

At the recent Jan. 12 State of the Union, President Obama delivered a signature, uplifting address, returning to his original message of hope after eight years and ultimately asserting that the state of the union is strong. In this address, President Obama attempted to stifle the discontentment and frustration in politics, denouncing popular notions of the U.S.’s shortcomings. “Anyone claiming that America’s economy is in decline is peddling fiction,” he said in response to his critics. At the New Hampshire primary, however, voters responded with a repudiation of their president’s assessment of the country. Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump secured decisive victories for the far left and right, respectively, a...

Despite Declining Popularity, Twitter Serves Purpose for Citizen Journalists

Ben Silverman, Contributing Writer

November 13, 2015

Twitter is undergoing turbulence. Its struggles to hold users’ interest have caused some to speculate that the 140-character model of sharing news and opinions may have been overvalued by investors and potentially the rest of society. Although Twitter is currently the ninth most popular website in the world, some feel that society has failed to capitalize on it’s potential. Twitter’s current model, still true to form since its conception, seems increasingly unsustainable, as user growth has nearly flatlined since last year. Companies like Twitter exist under the “evolve or die” mentality. Google or Amazon appear on the news every other week announcing a new project or buying another company, dwarfing Twitt...

Composers Debut Thought-Provoking Pieces

Composers Debut Thought-Provoking Pieces

October 30, 2015

A small group of interested students filed into Warner Concert Hall and gathered up front in anticipation for the Student Composers Concert this past Wednesday. During the concert, Conservatory students showcased original works that ranged from vivid theatrical accompaniments to postmodern, entirely electronic noise sequences. Each musician displayed great conviction in their performance. It was a concert that signified the approaching conclusion of the formative stages in these musicians’ careers...

Scorecard Empowers Incoming Students

Ben Silverman, Contributing Writer

September 25, 2015

After the Obama administration’s recent release of College Scorecard, a user-friendly data cache designed to give prospective students access to more information about the institutions to which they are preparing to commit several years of their life, previously uncharted statistics have been brought into the public eye. The announcement of this initiative, which brought to light data such as median earnings after 10 years and the tendency of alumni to default on their debt, was met with heavy opposition from presidents of lower-tier and elite colleges alike. Those who represent under-performing schools are rightly afraid that they may be weeded out in the future, and some elite colleges fear the corporatization ef...

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