Editor’s Note: Engaging with Ideas at Stanford

Dear Readers,

It is Fall of 2011, and time for another volume of the Stanford Review. During nearly a quarter-century of existence, the Review has delivered to Stanford students and faculty the opinions and news stories that evince excitement, demand judgement, and inspire action. The present time requires no less from the Review, as the nation’s confidence in government falters, the state’s economic situation worsens, and the narrowness of modern liberal thought pervades much of the teaching and discussions at Stanford University.

In 1987, Peter Thiel founded the Review as an alternative to the preeminent liberal philosophy on campus. Since then the paper has grown into a hub of campus news and opinions, still offering a haven to those who do not find contentedness or truth in the Stanford mainstream. The Review knows that not every student will agree with its opinions. But it’s this knowledge that necessitates the dissemination of those opinions, so that the debate on campus can be invigorated by ideas and discussion, not suppressed by conformism and intolerance.

News readers, especially at Stanford, expect professionalism and honesty, values that the Review expects of its articles, its staff, and its school. In recent years, the Review’s ideologically diverse news team has sought to explore the nature of the curriculum at Stanford, to apply a critical lens to the ASSU, Stanford’s student body government, and to share stories about Stanford’s innovative thinkers and doers in technology, political thought, and academics. While many articles focus on topics of interest to conservatives, many also focus on topics of general interest or general importance to the student body. Students read the Review for campus news that goes in-depth, providing the revealing interviews, hidden facts, and thorough approach that makes Stanford news matter.

But the Review also hosts a variety of thoughtful ideas and arguments on its opinion pages. Coming from conservatives, libertarians, moderates, and contrarians, these opinions provide students with critical looks at campus issues. This past year, the Review hosted numerous opinions about ROTC and its return to campus. The editorial board led the charge in arguing for ROTC’s return, a position which the faculty senate ultimately adopted.

Readers are urged to engage with ideas and stories printed in the Review. In four quick years, the experience of the Stanford University campus will provide students with more knowledge acquisition and intellectual exercise than perhaps any other time in their life. The Review plays a vital role in that, and to disconnect from it would be of great detriment to the life of the mind. Even if one disagrees with the Review’s opinions, they cover topics and issues that must be addressed by every student, in every major, preparing for every profession.

Enjoy reading this first issue of Volume XLVII. Included are articles on the debt crisis and its effect on student debt, the ASSU Executive branch, and Stanford students who have started companies this summer. If you find something with which you disagree or that you really like, let us know! The Review publishes to engage with the student body, so please send comments, op-eds, or inquiries about joining to kylehuwa@stanford.edu.

Fiat Lux!
Kyle Huwa

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