Tuesday, April 15, 2008

See It To Believe It

Vanderbilt University has 2876 full-time faculty members. Of this number, which one has the University chosen to highlight on its website? A hint: three days after the first article on the case appeared, he demanded that Duke summarily expel at least 46 members of the lacrosse team.

This man, described by the Vanderbilt website as "one of the most wide-ranging intellectuals in America," penned the following item to a correspondent who suggested that he had rushed to judgment about the charges.

Who is really concerned about whether a woman was actually raped or not? Are you a perfect idiot? I mean the fact is that a team of 46 white (and ONE) black men were underaged drinkers, racial epithet hurlers, urinators in public, beat up people who were gay before they were admitted to the lacrosse team, and were reported as bad actors in 2004. i never said anyone was raped, but the record is clear that Duke men's lacrosse players write emails about killing and stripping "bitches" and they are a herd of bad actors. Are you white? If you would really want your son or daughter or brother or sister to act in this fashion and join the team, I pity you. Maybe you should go to Badjocks.com. Do some research and get the BIGGER picture before you fire off idiotic emails like this one, ok? ALL of "official" American history is a lie, Pal!!

Where did YOu go to school??? Read Howard Zinn, for goodness sake. Good lorad [sic], all you people think you an go "ah hah," and the polar caps will not melt, or the levees will hold. You live in a white supremacist fantasy land, and sometimes even get paid for doing so. Whew! Have you read recently? Anything?

At GOGGLE [sic], punch in "Men's Lacrosse at Duke" and see what a perfectly horrible leader in egregious behavior Duke and its 46 white men have been.

And, get over yourself, buddy. Get smart before you write to a professor, OK. Read SOMETHING.

And here was "one of the most wide-ranging intellectuals in America" responding to a lacrosse player's mother, who asked if he would consider apologizing for his actions after the case collapsed. He penned the below from his vanderbilt.edu e-mail account.

LIES! You are just a provacateur [sic] on a happy New Years Eve trying to get credit for a scummy bunch of white males! You know you are in search of sympaathy [sic] for young white guys who beat up a gay man [sic] in Georgetown, get drunk in Durham, and lived like “a bunch of farm animals” near campus.

I really hope whoever sent this stupid farce of an email rots in .... umhappy [sic] new year to you ... and forgive me if your [sic] really are, quite sadly, mother of a “farm animal.”

Here is the website screenshot.


Anonymous said...

Curious. Was this raving (possibly frequently intoxicated) prof a Gee hire? Gee has since left Vandy for OSU, where his bow tie is to go into orbit, for some inexplicable reason. Too bad, if he solicited this hire, that he is not attached to the bow tie.

Anonymous said...

When did Vandy establish an agriculture college?

W. R. Chambers said...

From the Vanderbilt website:

His (Prof. Baker's) critique of black public intellectuals titled Betrayal: How Black Intellectuals Have Abandoned the Ideals of the Civil Rights Era is scheduled for release in 2008.

Why would an intellectual abandon civil rights ideals?

Debrah said...

More fun from Baker

Debrah said...

You know, you can read Houston Baker's comments above and then recall KC's previous posts on the guy's behavior.......

.......and you still don't fully believe that someone like this teaches at any university.

TaterCon said...

Surely appeared to be the ravings of a drunk at a keyboard to me....

don t. said...

Vanderbilt, not unlike Duke, has a massive case of 'white guilt' and will do absolutely anything to show how liberal and unbigoted they are. Pathetic.


Anonymous said...

Why are you amazed?

As a Liberal Arts Professor he is typical.

He's the same as I saw them when I went to school in the early 1960's to get a degree in Engineering.

Nothing has changed in the last 40+ years.

Jim B

Anonymous said...

Baker was a Gee hire.

Anonymous said...

This man sure appears to be one of the most wide-ranging intellectuals in America.

Stu Daddy said...

Scott McLemee at Inside Higher Ed: In Search of Max Faber.

dgrove said...

An intriguing question: How many of Vanderbilt's other 2875 faculty members, after reading this man's rantings, would still rate him as "one of the most wide-ranging intellectuals in America"? The follow-up would be to tabulate the academic "disciplines" of those who still do rate him as such. I suspect that they would very closely match those of the group of 88, in which case the need for quotes around "disciplines" is self-evident. The further follow-up would be to question how many of the 2875 do not rate him so favorably, and of course how many of them have the spine to complain that he was appointed to their faculty at all.

Anonymous said...

Simply stunning. This professor is iconic of what is wrong with academia. Few, if any, are willing to "cross swords" with the race, class and gender pinheads.

For a professor to continue to assert mistruths and remain unapologetic for statements that have been, at times, malicious and incendiary is shameful and disgraceful. Even more disappointing, is the thought that a fine institution such as Vanderbilt would award and glamorize a professor of this ilk.

I guess to become legendary and influential in academia you need to make outlandish and denigrating statements about the U.S.

It's absolutely sickening that these people can infiltrate the best institutions in the U.S. and gain a grain of gratuity and respect for their diatribes.

Luke said...

He's the greatest mind since Max Faber.

Anonymous said...

do any of you have a child at vandyLand? have you watched what admissions is doing as they create their version of Duke?
i believe Baker is paid over or around 200k for his professionalism. someone got taken in this bargain. his wife also teaches at vandy.
i saw this on their website and was going to email KC. i'm glad he picked it up before me.
for those choosing colleges next year please read KC's excellent book about Duke and if considering vandyland ask about their recent hires as they become more and more PC.

Gary Packwood said...


Once again we witness higher education administrators push forward their view that universities are all about appearances.

Truth and the facts do not matter.

Will Vandy's spin on this professor be the appearance that stands the test of time or will the faculty, alumni and students demand an accounting?

mac said...

Since Professor Baker made so many spelling errors we can deduce that the description of the good Prof was also a misspelling: "widely ranging intellectuals" probably was meant to be "wildly raging."

I enjoyed the misspellings as much as the rant: "your really are" is basically "you are really are."

A professor of English who doesn't know how to use an apostrophe? Who doesn't know how to say "you really are," or "you're really, quite sadly..."

there may be some speculation that Baker is exposing his "inner pirate," subtly disguising his words "ar ar" in some intellectual colloquialism.

Ah, Intellectual colloqialism: that's like the words "feral intelligence" or "vernacular intellectual" - (all have approximately the same meaning.) Of course, it's Grant Farred who says "vernacular intellectual," but I suspect that Professor Baker has the same "Idiot's Guide" as Farred, and speaks from the same pages with the same aplomb.

Norm said...

KC, check your calendar. It is not April 1st, and I can think of no other reason for the eminent intellectual to have sent these emails.
Unless of course he is being satirical and has fooled us all with his clever attempts to act like an uneducated buffoon.

Anonymous said...

Houston Baker is "Prima Facie" evidence that you don't have to be white to be a racist

Debrah said...


Duke loses again.

Anonymous said...

Is Baker a Communist?

af said...

Please folks, you must admire one of the "most wide-ranging intellectuals in America". After all, his IQ can go from 0 to 60 in 3.5 seconds (about the time it takes him to open his mouth and insert his foot). It's nice that Baker has made it to Vandy. At least he's moving closer to the left coast (his education seems to be stuck on the world is flat---if we're lucky, he'll fall off). Oh to be a Ferrari. Alas, Professer Baker, you're closer to a Yugo. (Professer is correct--me thinks you do profess too much)!!

Houston, we have a problem. Oops, Houston YOU have a problem.

Anonymous said...

Evidence is piling up that Vanderbilt is making every effort to follow in Duke's footsteps. When applications and donations are arriving at a fever pitch, the administration has a lot of leeway to push the hype...even though it is a complete disgrace. I suppose they are trying to rehabilitate Prof. Baker's image. He's had some bad press down there lately, and he's a pretty big investment for the University. Since they can't get rid of him they might as well give him some touch ups and see if they can get some mileage out of him. But where oh where are the ethical standards of academia.


haskell said...

Caption Contest:

"You gotta understand -- they were ALMOST guilty."

Or as Houston would say it:

"In my personal informed pontifical viewpoint, those white perpetrors (sic) almost certainly, and unequivocally, and persuadingly (sic) were in the incorrect and inappropriate place at an erroneous and untimely time and even if they are innocent, intellectually speaking, they should have been declared guilty of something."

Note that the poor student is covering up her ears as best she can.

Sigh -- Style once again trumps substance. Congrats Vandy on a great hire.

Debrah said...

H-S letter:

Praying for Obama

John McCain and Hillary Clinton want us to believe that Barack Obama was being arrogant when he said we are clinging to our religious faith when our elected officials let us down. It is they who are being arrogant and fail to understand what it takes to get up and go to work each day in trying to support a family.

Bitterness and frustration? Ha! Try anger, rage, and at times down-right loathing. I, for one, am sick and tired of politicians at all levels who promise us one thing, and then when elected, they work hard to stick it to us with their do-nothing votes and pandering to rich contributors.

What we need is an American version of the French Revolution! People like McCain and Clinton don't get it -- they have become so isolated from working people by their years in Washington. I have already cast my vote for Obama. I see him as the only hope that we as working men and women have for the future. I pray that God will bless this country with Barack Obama as our next president.

April 17, 2008

Anonymous said...

Houston Baker, one of the finest minds of the sixteenth century...

bobo1949 said...

Does Judge Beatty's ruling mean that Duke U will have to change its' informational web site to show that the original charges were specious?

Anonymous said...

These comments are clasics. There is a 300 page book about the Group of 88 that would sell millions of copies. As ridiculous as the "letter" was the replies and acadamia of these characters is pure comedy. KC do you have another book you?

Anonymous said...

I'm genuinely curious here. Is it possible that Mr. Baker doesn't realize his behavior in the Duke Lacrosse case has made him look like an ignorant, bigoted, hypocritcal fool? Can he somehow not care? In what kind of a strange world must someone live in order to act this way?

Debrah said...

The H-S always sticks with the corrupt element.

H-S editorial:

Close call, but we pick Cline for DA

Apr 18, 2008

The Duke lacrosse case -- which some say should be called the Mike Nifong case -- hangs heavily over the race for Durham district attorney.

Nifong is gone, disgraced and disbarred for his actions in the case. The May 6 primary has four candidates seeking to fill the remaining two years of his abbreviated term. Two of the candidates -- Tracey Cline and Mitch Garrell -- are assistants in the DA's office. Another candidate, Freda Black, is a former assistant DA who was fired by Nifong and ran unsuccessfully against him two years ago. The fourth candidate is Keith Bishop, an attorney in private practice.

This election should really be about much more than lacrosse. The Durham courts have a backlog of trials, ancient technology and the perception that too many criminals who should be behind bars are walking the streets. The next DA must spend time tackling these issues.

But there's no way around it -- the question is whether working with Nifong disqualifies someone from the DA's job. After much discussion, we've decided the answer is no. The lacrosse case was Nifong's personal vendetta -- he grabbed the wheel and steered it over a cliff -- but his actions did not reflect deep flaws within the DA's office.

With that in mind, we endorse Tracey Cline, currently the chief assistant district attorney. Cline is a 1989 graduate of N.C. Central Law School with broad experience as a public defender and prosecutor. She joined the DA's office in 1994. Her experience and knowledge of the Durham court system make her well-qualified for the position. She is a capable and respected trial lawyer who was considered for the DA's job when Nifong was chosen.

Still, we think former assistant prosecutor Freda Black is also well-qualified, making the choice between her and Cline difficult. Black is a graduate of Campbell University Law School who has also been a respected prosecutor and defense attorney. She joined the Durham DA's office in 1991. Her shining moment was sharing the spotlight with then-DA Jim Hardin in the trial of Michael Peterson, now serving a life term for killing his wife.

In 2005, Nifong fired Black, which seems almost a badge of honor. She has worked in a private firm since then.

Garrell and Bishop are also capable attorneys, but we think they lack the broad experience necessary for the DA's job.

Debrah said...

H-S letter:

Profiles without courage

I cannot, in good conscience, vote for any of the candidates running for Durham district attorney who worked for our former DA.

Surely one these fine lawyers could have had the courage to speak up regarding the lacrosse case. Sometimes one has to take a stand regardless of consequences. But none of the internal candidates had the gravitas to make this decision. That person surely would have been worthy of our votes.

JFK said that those who display courage are often elected officials who, by acting in accord with their consciences, risked their careers or lives by pursuing a larger vision of the national, state or local interest.

April 18, 2008

Debrah said...

Here's an article from The Chronicle covering the appearance of David Horowitz at Duke last evening.

There were no protests and no flashing of boobs this time from members of the Gang of 88 and the attendance was much smaller.

No doubt, the Duke faculty would have us believe that this is because of lack of interest in Horowitz's subject matter; however, the real reason for the silence is because most of the Gang of 88 have effectively been neutered.

Their raucous displays don't pack the punch that they used to.

Moreover, the entire country witnessed the degree of their depravity and know that Horowitz speaks the truth.

By: Audrey McGowan

David Horowitz, a conservative writer and activist, discussed Islamofascism and the Duke lacrosse case in a speech to approximately 50 people Thursday night.

Two years since his last visit to Duke, conservative activist David Horowitz was met with little fanfare Thursday night.

With approximately 50 people attending his speech, Horowitz's appearance contrasted his March 2006 visit during which protesting audience members in the front row heckled at several of his statements.

Horowitz came to speak as part of Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week, an event sponsored by the Duke Conservative Union.

"The issue is, there is a global movement within Islam-not representing all or even a majority of Muslims-but there is a fundamentalist movement that wants to take the entire world back to the seventh century," he said.

Much of his discussion of Islamo-Fascism focused on the oppression of women, which he later used to criticize liberals.

"People on the left think that they're changing the world and bringing about a new millennium where there will be no racism or sexism," he said. "People who are described as liberals are generally leftists. Inside every leftist is a totalitarian."

Horowitz said prominent liberals and leaders of Muslim extremists share the same views about America.

"They both believe America is evil," he said.

The liberals' lack of action against Muslim leaders such as Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is comparable to the lack of action against Adolf Hitler in the 1930s, Horowitz said.

"Their agenda is to establish one world under an Islamic caliphate and under Islamic law," he added.

He estimated that about 10 percent of Muslims, or 150 million people, hold these beliefs.

Horowitz also advanced a strong pro-Israel perspective.

"[Palestinian culture] is an evil culture," he said. He added that Palestinians attacked Israel because they wanted to eliminate the Jews, not because they wanted self determination or their own state.

Ahmed Abdel-Wahab, a first-year economics graduate student, said he disagreed with Horowitz's portrayal of the Israel-Palestine conflict.

"He's telling the history of the Middle East and Muslims as if Palestine was an empty country prior to 1948," he said.

Horowitz also inveighed against the Duke faculty who opposed Israel's policy in the Middle East.

"Your anti-Semitic professors call it an occupation," Horowitz said.

Horowitz, who authored "Indoctrinate U: The Left's War Against Academic Freedom" and "The Professors: The 101 Most Dangerous Academics in America," also criticized Duke professors for their reaction to the lacrosse case.

"If the three lacrosse players were black and the drug addicted, criminal prostitute was white, do you think for one second the lacrosse season would have ended?" he asked.

President Richard Brodhead is "spineless" and his administration exists to protect him, Horowitz said. He added that Duke students were deprived of their right to hear multiple perspectives on controversial issues.

"You're being indoctrinated," he said. "You're not being taught."

Student reactions to the speech varied.

President of DCU David Bitner, a sophomore, said he appreciated Horowitz's speech.

"To be able to engage with someone is truly precious from the intellectual perspective," Bitner said.

Horowitz's speech, however, left some students frustrated.

"It's never black and white," said Marie Bouthors, an art history graduate student.

Debrah said...

Houston Baker is exhibit A.

Horowitz should carry with him a life-size cardboard cut-out of Baker to every campus he visits.

Anonymous said...

I attended college in the late 60s and was relatively untouched by the leftist liberal professors. Like most of my fellow students, we really weren't interested in what was being said in class and rarely paid attention. My child attends Duke and has had classes with a few of the Group of 88 and could really care less. Unfortunately, college is rarely a place for learning and more to have fun, drink and attend sports events. There were and are serious students interested in intellectual achievement, but in my opinion they are the minority and usually in the sciences, math, etc.

Anonymous said...

"...see what a perfectly horrible leader in egregious behavior Duke and its 46 white men have been."

Lets see, Broadhead, Steele, Aleva,...

Who are the other 43?

Debrah said...

A few minutes ago I received yet another one of those phone calls--the recorded variety--voters get around election time.

This one was from Obama.

I listened to the entire message instead of hanging up as I usually do.

I just love his voice.


Glenn said...

Sadly this gentleman probably is one of the premier intellectuals in academia today.

Anonymous said...

Has anyone here seen Max Faber? Let him know that I'm looking for him. Thanks.

Debrah said...

H-S letter:

DA's lame excuses

I was amazed at the lame excuses Durham District Attorney David Saacks gave for allowing Laurence Lovette's first-degree burglary charge (night home invasion) to be reduced to a misdemeanor as reported in a front page Herald-Sun article April 12.

This ridiculous action left Lovette on the street to be soon charged with murder of a Duke University student, then a UNC student. The handling of this capital burglary case by the DA's Office and the Durham Police make the Mike Nifong action look inconsequential.

Chapel Hill
April 19, 2008

don t. said...

In a scene from "The Hucksters", an old movie about advertising, one of the protagonist says that if you repeat anything often and long enough, people start to believe it. That's kinda where Baker and his apologists are today. And another old goodie from Mark Twain, I think: nobody ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American people. The fact that this clown is allowed anywhere near a campus tells you how smart we are.


Anonymous said...

At the risk of being repetitive, it does seem that Professor Baker tends to communicate while intoxicated.

Debrah said...

Duke Students for an Ethical Duke has posted a video on the Horowitz appearance.

Debrah said...

Marcia Morey?

Isn't she Mike Nifong's favorite girl?

Isn't she the one along with Judge Stephens who gave a tear-jerker testimonial about her buddy Nifong?


Marcia H. Morey: The gap between adult, juvenile justice

Apr 19, 2008

In the wake of recent tragic murders and shootings, one long-standing fatal flaw in North Carolina's criminal justice system stands out: It's the chasm between the juvenile delinquency system and the adult criminal system, which puts public safety at increasingly greater risk.

Legislators must examine the loophole that allows serious, repeat juvenile offenders to slide through the cracks into "first-time offender" status in the adult criminal system. Two bold steps can be taken to bridge this chasm between juvenile and adult criminal court:

1) Raise the age of juvenile jurisdiction from 16 to 18 years.

2) Allow certain juvenile records to be used in subsequent adult prosecutions.

These proposals focus on two objectives: Public safety and stopping young offenders from going through the revolving door from juvenile to adult court.

I speak from my experience of almost 10 years as a judge who presides in both juvenile and adult district criminal courts. When I preside in adult criminal court, occasionally I see a familiar 16- or 17-year-old who has been before me in juvenile court on felony cases. But because juvenile records are confidential, the prosecutor in adult court will inform me the "kid" is a "first time" offender. The prosecutor may suggest an unsecured bond or offer a lenient plea bargain, reducing a felony charge of armed robbery to a misdemeanor assault by pointing a gun, for example.

Because juvenile records are confidential, leniency is often presumed. For judges who do not preside in juvenile court and who are not privy to juvenile records, the plea offer to the 16-year-old might seem reasonable.

A similar situation arises with juveniles who have one foot in the juvenile system (meaning they are still under juvenile court supervision, having been released early from a training school or who are on probation for crimes committed before they turned 16) and one in the adult system. Too often the logic has been: If they are now 16 or 17, "let the adult system handle these kids." The flaw to this reasoning is that there are more serious consequences in the juvenile court system than if they are treated as "first-time" adult offenders.

Juvenile law requires curfew checks, parental involvement, drug and anger management, psychotherapy, educational mandates, no gang-related affiliations and other intensive rehabilitation efforts. For those who do not comply, judges can impose sanctions of electronic house arrest, detention and the possibility of training school, or as some call it juvenile prison, up until the youth's 19th birthday. It is anything but "kiddie court."

The truth is the juvenile system is much more intensive than the adult criminal system, which is grossly understaffed and overworked. The juvenile system often offers more intensive supervision with caseloads of 30 youth per court counselor, compared to adult probation officers who monitor caseloads of 130 defendants and who prioritize compliance with payment of monetary fines and probation fees.

It is well-documented that 16-and 17-year-olds are at the height of their immaturity, impulsivity and aggression. Brain imaging studies confirm their brains are not fully developed. Civil laws take this into account: Youth under the age of 18 can't vote, purchase alcohol or cigarettes, marry, enlist in the Amy or enter into contracts. They are "minors" subject to parental authority.

If the age of juvenile jurisdiction is raised, North Carolina laws presently allow that any juvenile 13 years or older can be transferred to the adult system for serious, violent felonies. This provision should not be subject to change and should remain the law.

Forty-eight other states see the wisdom of juvenile jurisdiction to include youth who are 16 and 17. It is time for North Carolina to do the same. Last year, State Rep. Alice Bordsen introduced such legislation. It should be debated and passed. This proposal does not "coddle" young offenders, but holds them accountable and prevents them from skipping from one system into another.

Raising the age of juvenile jurisdiction will require an increased allocation of funding for the Department of Juvenile Justice. But it would be a prudent move for public safety. Money will be saved in the long run for would-be victims and the reduction in adult incarceration costs. Youth who are supervised in the juvenile system are proven to have lower recidivism rates.

Finally, there should be immediate reform to the laws that restrict the use of juvenile felony records. A juvenile with an extensive history of felonious or violent behavior should not be able to hide behind the veil of a confidential juvenile record.

Current juvenile confidentiality laws are ambiguous and conflicting. Prosecutors do not have clear guidelines as to what offense information may be obtained from juvenile court proceedings for use in subsequent adult charges. Probation officers have no idea if a teenager they are ordered to supervise has a prior juvenile violent felony offense. When setting bonds or accepting pleas in adult court, judges have no information about prior serious juvenile offenses.

Nonviolent juvenile offenders must have the protection of confidentiality in juvenile court. Most of them can be rehabilitated. But for known, violent juvenile offenders, swift legislative change is needed to stop them from revolving into the adult system as first- time offenders while wreaking havoc upon victims in the community.

Marcia H. Morey is a Durham district court judge.

Jello said...

I have lost any and all respect for Vandy.

Anonymous said...

Houston Baker is to academia what Algonquin J Calhoun is to the legal profession

Nomenklatura said...

The term which best captures Houston Baker's role at Vanderbilt is 'hood ornament'.