Sunday, February 1, 2009

cheating: in the news and on the stage

Looks like Treasury Secretary Geithner has company in the 'tax trouble club'. Health and Human Services Secretary-designate Tom Daschle is in the news for tax issues of his own -- and also regarding money he earned from interests in the health care industry. Of course, the main question being raised right now with Daschle is: Will this affect his confirmation? (I'd say the answer is probably 'no' -- he will likely be confirmed.) Addendum 2/4/09: Oops! Guess I got THAT wrong! Daschle is toast.

But for me, the more interesting question is: How pervasive is cheating? Maybe all these tax mistakes were 'innocent', but I must say I have my doubts. (And Hubby says that it looks like the best way to get people to pay their taxes is to nominate them for an important post!)

Part of why I'm pondering the pervasiveness of cheating is that on Friday night I attended the play Cheat (in which Offspring #1 was involved) at WWU. The play focused on cheating in relationships, business, and sports, and it was designed to raise questions rather than give answers.

One of the really cool things about this play is that it is a "devised" work. According to the playbill, "Devising is the creation of a new theatrical work where the artists who collaborate to create the piece also perform it." Using David Callahan's book The Cheating Culture: Why More Americans Are Doing Wrong to Get Ahead for inspiration, the students wrote the script, did the stage design, music, costumes, etc. Everything was done 'from scratch' and it was impressive! My mind is still reeling over the amount of work involved! (As an aside, the stage was designed so that the majority of the audience was standing several feet above the actors during the entire production -- which was an interesting perspective!)

Offspring #1 and her boyfriend Doug were excellent in their roles involving the relationship aspect of the topic. Their performances were both rock solid, and their chemistry on stage was (probably not surprisingly!) wonderful.

Here they are:
[photo by Hailey Tucker, which appeared in 'The Western Front' online edition]

This play provided lots of food for thought, and I plan on reading Callahan's book as a follow up.

re: the other photos:
I googled the top 'tax' photo, and I took the picture of the 'Cheat' poster at Bandito's Burritos!


dust bunny said...

Dang...another WWU play I haven't seen. sigh

Rev SS said...

Good on them for tackling this! Sounds good

Processing Counselor said...

Sounds interesting

Presbyterian Gal said...

That sounds like a great book.

And I so wish I could see your Offspring perform! And that play sounds amazing.

Purple said...

Nice post. I think I'll add that book to my Amazon wish list.

Purple said...

Nice post. I think I'll add that book to my Amazon wish list.

Hot Cup Lutheran said...

very cool. i have spent much time with my 8th grade students in confirmation discussing cheating... and why, yes it is a sin. they shrug and answer "yeah well everyone does it though." hmmm....

not everyone sillies!