Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Another Group of 88'er Promoted

Srinivas Aravamudan has become the third member of the Group of 88 to be promoted to a deanship since signing the Group's statement. Aravadudan joins Lee Baker and Sally Deutsch as the Group's representatives among the ranks of Duke deans. And, of course, 88'er Paula McClain currently serves as chair of the Duke Academic Council, the highest-elected faculty position on campus.

Aravamudan's research interests--postcolonial literature and theory--place him squarely in the Group's intellectual mainstream. In explaining the appointment, Dean of Trinity College Dean George McLendon cited Aravamudan's work at the Franklin Humanities Institute, where he ran a seminar entitled--naturally--“Race, Justice, and the Politics of Memory.”

According to his official statement, Aravamudan describes his role as building “on the existing strengths and accomplishments of the humanities faculty [which is dominated by the Group of 88]. Duke humanities have been recognized as stellar across the world over the last 20 years and the university will strive to the utmost to maintain that reputation. The current economic challenges will, nonetheless, also help humanities departments recognize their most pressing priorities, and encourage collaboration and rejuvenation over mere reduplication. There is no doubt that humanities at Duke will continue to forge ahead in terms of new configurations of theory and practice, and continued innovations in disciplinary as well as interdisciplinary scholarship.”

Aravamundan, by the way, also signed the "clarifying" statement, which Robert O'Neil recently noted "substantially heightened" the concern with the Group's ad, since the signatories, even after "the steady erosion of the premises on which the lacrosse players’ guilt had been based at the time of the original ad . . . declined to apologize or retract, and essentially reaffirmed the position they had advanced nine months earlier."

That members of the Group have consistently been promoted speaks volumes of Duke's future path.

89 comments:

Anonymous said...

Is the word "reduplication" the same as rerepetitive? Rerepeat?

Anonymous said...

This only reinforces that my resignation years ago from the Duke alumni was the right choice . This is not the Duke I know and care about,nor the Duke I care to support. It is not there for the students anymore. tom newbill

Anonymous said...

I truly hope that this pattern of rewarding and elevating those at Duke who behaved most dispicably during the rape hoax will fortify the plaintiffs in their litigation against Duke.

Clearly, without external pressures being applied nothing will change at Duke.

A parallel occurs to me: just as the exposure of the rape hoax will, in the long run, most benefit the less affluent of Durham who don't have the financial resources to fight the corruption, I hope the lawsuits against Duke will, in the long run, benefit Duke by forcing it to return to the traditional values of the academy, including fidelity to due process and to its students.

-RD

Marco2006 said...

Duke's Administration continues its foolishness. Apparently they have learned little from the Duke Lacrosse Frame/Hoax but stay the course.

It will take a financial 2 X 4 across their endowment to wake them up.

Anonymous said...

What's that old definition of insanity? Doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result.

bill anderson said...

I think this development does help advance one of the themes of a paper I am writing, that being that Duke's response was not the bumbling, halting response that we have been told was the case. Instead, Duke was seeking to "protect the Duke brand," but the brand they were protecting was the brand developed by Stanley Fish, Nan Keohane, Larry Moneta, John Burness, and Richard Brodhead.

That "brand," which has been developed for more than two decades, is based upon the politicizing of the curriculum and making Duke seem to be a "trendy" place that promotes the Politically Correct studies. Indeed, this case presented a great opportunity for the powers that be at Duke to crack down on the "privileged" Duke students, and it presented the radical faculty with the opportunity to "storm the Winter Palace."

If you look at academic developments at Duke since the case began, you will see that those faculty members who were at their worst are the ones that Brodhead has most rewarded. This is no accident.

Anonymous said...

I have a question for K.C. and any other "scholarly investigators" out there: have any of you actually spoken with all of the professors who signed, or do you just generalize based on the comments of the few more vocal professors?

I ask this in earnest. It seems to me that, in such a small sample (88 is not a large group), there could be a plethora of mindsets, opinions, what-have-you that went into this situation. Most of the commentaries I have read, however, are opinions based off of general statements. If we really want to know what's going on in peoples' minds, I do not think we should be satisfied with such limited research.

Am I trying to "exonerate" anyone here? No. I merely want to point out that there is a great deal less information available to us than some claim there is.

Now, someone might say: "oh, but they refuse to be interviewed." I would reply that I can understand this. It may not be out of shame or conspiracy that this refusal to speak arises. It may simply be that one does not wish to enter the media; that one is distrustful of being roped into what s/he may perceive as an absurd study. Can you blame such a person? Some may say yes, some may say no.

I want to point out a slight inaccuracy in this entry, though. KC writes:

"the humanities faculty [which is dominated by the Group of 88]."

I believe the intention was to point out that the 88 signatories were predominantly from humanities departments. If you look at the number of humanities faculty members, you quickly realize that 88 is, again, a small number (there are over 2,500 full-time faculty at Duke).

Of course, what I expect is the common retort I hear when discussing this matter: "well, whatever they did was bad enough."

Thanks for hearing me out, at least.

Anonymous said...

It's crap like this that underscores why it remains extremely important--indeed, critically, so--for the various plaintiffs in litigation against Duke to see their noble efforts all the way through. Duke won't fix itself. They need a legal "intervention."

Please, folks, let's finish the job.

Debrah said...

The Duke Gang of 88 mascot, Tim Tyson, has an editorial in the N&O today.

Some of these people are so frightened by the possibility of becoming totally obsolete.

Anytime the N&O wants to rev up the old race narratives, they call on Tyson---or he suddenly appears with his folksy gospel inspired preaching.

And my, does old Tim know just the right strings to pull to elicit the "Amens" from his desperate-for-another-grievance herd.

In 2006, publisher Quarles rushed to have big Timmy do a long exposé on the Wilmington Riots when it was clear that the Lacrosse Hoax was going to be a big negative for them.

Recently, they feverishly printed the op-ed from a little doctoral candidate proclaiming the harsh realities in America----"Racial disparity is a big problem! Don't forget that! Obama's election means nothing! We still have rampant racism that is deadly!"

Then they erased the comment section that provided the other side.

I'm suprised that Tyson didn't revisit the goofy "vanilla suburbs" tool.

LOL!!!

About Rev. Lowery, he can "preach" any way he wishes; however, if Tyson and others want to engage in the fantasy that Obama was thrilled with Lowery's rhetoric, and not a bit embarrassed by it, so be it.

It was tired. It was silly. And it showed that some black "leaders" cannot let go of what made them well-known figures.

Lowery is old and I have no problem with what he wants to say; however, I'm really quite bored with it.

Anonymous said...

tom@12:58
bill@2:00

I, too, "resigned" from the Duke Alumni Association but it was long before the Hoax. I had been a consistent donor to the school since my 1968 graduation but after Nan arrived I could see a decided leftward/PC shift by the school merely through the articles in the Duke magazine - my only point of contact. I told my kids they couldn't attend Duke and I ceased all donations.

The only revelation (to me) to come from the Hoax was Duke's stellar reputation was nothing more than PC acamedicians rating other PC acamedicians. The more PC the better as far as the ratings were concerned. The stench is overwhelming.

Grafton

KC Johnson said...

To the 2.56:

Yes, early in the case, I emailed each member of the Group of 88, with questions. All but a few refused to respond. I followed up in December 2006, with similar results. The Friends of Duke University did likewise, with similar results. It is my impression that HBO has had similar results.

There is nothing I would like more than to have each of the Group of 88 explain his/her interpretation of the ad and the case. In late January 2007, Group member Cathy Davidson actually circulated a long email explaining her position in the wake of a controversial op-ed that she wrote. I emailed her, offering to post her email, without any commentary from me. She declined my offer.

Thank you for the proposed correction, but my original language was what I intended. While there may be 2500 faculty members at Duke, there are certainly not 2500 tenured or tenure-track humanities faculty members at Duke. In most humanities departments as of 2007, Group members were either a majority or a substantial plurality.

Anonymous said...

KC - I appreciate your clarification on your wording. I understand where you are coming from. What I think throws me is the fact that, of Duke's offered majors, most fall under the classification of being a "humanity" or a very closely related field.

If the humanities include classics, history, law, philosophy, religion, arts, literature, and languages, then many of Duke's programs fall under this category. Shall we say...let's say around half?

Now, I don't know that there are equal numbers of faculty in each department at Duke (in fact, I highly doubt there are), but let's assume that this is so for the sake of the math: that's still around 1250 professors in the humanities, and 88 is still a small number. Not as small anymore, but still small.

I'm not trying to argue with you here. In fact, you've probably done a lot more math on this than I have. I only ask for the sake of clarity.

Regarding what's probably the more important concern (responses of the faculty):

I figured that was probably the case. In all honesty, I'm surprised that as many (that is, any) responded as they did (no offense). Cathy Davidson's e-mail is also a "non-shocker". It is, perhaps for some of us, a "loss" to not know more about what everyone was thinking when they signed-on. A lot of those who have chosen to speak have gotten a lot of bad press (not always without warrant, I add), and it is understandable why no one would wish to follow suit. But perhaps we should simply respect the privacy of others.

I genuinely believe that some (possibly many, even most) of the signatories really did mean just what they claimed in the clarifying statement: that the ad was to raise awareness of discrimination. Do I think it was tactful to use the "event" as a jump-start? Not at all, and I understand (though don't necessarily agree with) demand for an apology and/or retraction. Can I understand where they would have been coming from though? Of course, and I think most of us can.

Thanks for the info, K.C.

Anonymous said...

Anon 2:56

If one pens one's name to a statement, shouldn't one be willing to explain why he or she felt so moved to do so? Yet, most have refused to elucidate their reasons or even to rescind their assent to the sentiments expressed in the document following the findings by AG Cooper.
One can only assume that they feel that there has been nothing (even the AG's report) that indicates anything other than that Crystal Mangums' claims were in fact true. As long as people in a position of authority (authority over their students, authority over what they teach in their classes and assign their students to read) such as the members of this gang are allowed to remain in place, nothing will be learned. The fact that the administration rewards (and believe it that being named a Dean is a reward - both financially and professionally) members of the gang shows that it has learned nothing.
cks

Anonymous said...

Dr. Aravamundan seems well qualified for the position. Was there someone else you felt was more deserving?

Anonymous said...

For what it's worth, I too emailed each of the 88 soon after the publication of the "ad". I registered my concern as an alumnus primarily for the lack of regard they held for a group of students who had not been convicted of anything. I was not provocative but asked for amplification so I could understand the impetus that would allow them to pursue this action.

I received only one reply which basically, if politely, suggested I reread the ad.

It was trivially obvious (for reasons that satisfy me but would not stand up in court) from the very first report I saw in the press about the event long before it became a cause celeb that the charges were ridiculous. As it turns out, the boys' overriding initial concern was that their coach would find out about the party and at best punish them with extra wind sprints and at worst suspend them for a game. These would not be the concerns of men worried about felony convictions.

Going further off topic- I had an 'ah ha' moment the other day. I was wondering why, after almost 3 years, I still check in at DIW and Liestoppers multiple times a day. It's the same reason that Star Wars was such a blockbuster. It's because it's so easy to differentiate the good guys from the bad guys. And, astoundingly, almost without exception, the good guys (the boys, their families, their lawyers, KC, JinC, MooG, the NC ethics triumvirate, etc, etc) continue to exemplify what I hold to be 'good' AND the villains have to a person continued to provide fodder for my contempt and loathing- most especially Precious herself who, in a move that absolutely transcended any possible ability on my part to predict, comes out with a "book" *insisting* she really was raped that night!!!!

Now I just need to come up with a pigeon hole designation for KC. His role here is clearly not that of historian, not as a journalist, not as a gadfly or community activist, he has no apparent source for secondary gain (unlikely to retire on revenues from UPI), not apparently a rabble rouser for its own sake though he has shown he has no fear of challenging academe...

I like to think that he simply can't tolerate the fact that there are members of his Academy who, by their actions, give the Academy a bad name and he is powerless not to point that out to whoever will listen with all the energy he can muster until the 'wrong' is somehow addressed.

Whatever the impetus, I'm grateful for him and his ilk who fearlessly and energetically take up banners......

RL alum medicine ‘75

Anonymous said...

To KC re. the poster at 2:56:

I applaud you for asking each of the signatories of the ad to explain him/herself, but I think that you miss the earlier commenter 's point: these individuals are under no obligation to respond to you, a blogger. This is where your project gets more complicated and more interesting, but also opens it to some criticism.

As a blogger you are under no obligation to follow any journalistic code of ethics, such as reporters for established media outlets follow. Certainly you have, but you have done so of your own volition. When you contact someone for an email exchange (not an interview, it's important to point out), you have only your word to convince the person that you will deal with him or her fairly; they are given no other assurance of your forthrightness. In short, whereas a journalist has the weight of an institution behind him or her, you have only the reputation of the blogospher and your word. The blogosphere is noted for many things (many good, some bad), but fairness is not one of them.

That reason and that reason alone would be sufficient to explain why these individuals chose not to respond to your email, and there's no reason for you to fault them (implicitly or explicitly) for following the tactic that makes perfect sense, both legally and logistically: remember that they were receiving a great deal of email at this time (and since), and no one could be expected to vet each and every email, nor check on the credentials of everyone who (says they) have a blog and are interested in the case. (This is, of course, one of the great freedoms and downfalls of blogging.) I have no doubt that you're more respectful than many who have emailed them, but certainly you can sympathize with a professor with an overflowing inbox.

Yes, I know that you wish that these individuals would explain themselves to you, but they're under no obligation to, and in fact I'm sure would be advised not to do so by almost any friend, confidant, press agent, or lawyer.

Whining that people don't respond to your emails just makes you sound small, and detracts from the great wealth of good work that you've done.

Anonymous said...

Dear 5:10,

Do not presuppose that you can speak for "most of us." You clearly cannot.


Thanks in advance,

MOO! Gregory

Anonymous said...

The way I look at it, is a signature appended to the Listening Ad worse -- and hence more of a disqualifier for promotion -- than a misdemeanor criminal conviction?

The answer to that question is an unqualified, "Yes."

As for more qualified individuals, I would start with anyone who didn't sign the Listening Ad. At least they didn't publicly ridicule their own innocent students during their most dire hour. Also, probably anyone in the economics department.

By the by, nice comment RL alum medicine '75. Your Star Wars analogy is perfect.

No justice, no peace said...

Inre: "...I figured that was probably the case. In all honesty, I'm surprised that as many (that is, any) responded as they did (no offense)...."

Let's no take the event out of context. They secured 88 signatories and published the "statement" in a very short period of time.

A fairer question would be how many of the faculty dodged a bullet in not responding when asked. How many avoided the PC intolerant Klan of 88 by just ignoring the solicitation email and not responding at all?

hman said...

5:10
Imagine that a number of your own schools Professors along with major media outlets put your face and name and address on TV while a panel of "experts" talked at length about what an evil thing it was to molest underage children. When confronted, they say, "We were not saying you are guilty, we are just trying to raise awareness of the issue."
That is a more or less perfect analogy what the gang of 88 (and their media buddies) tried to get away with. Personally, I think they have taken on a Karmic debt that will last a very long time.

Anonymous said...

RL alum medicine '75

Your sentiments express what I feel as well.
cks

Anonymous said...

Just in case people are interested, here is the full press release (from http://www.aas.duke.edu/news/#sa>):

English professor named humanities dean

Srinivas Aravamudan has been named dean of the humanities in Arts & Sciences, it was announced January 26 by Dean of the Faculty of Arts & Sciences and Dean of Trinity College Dean George L. McLendon. A professor in the department of English and the Program in Literature and director of the John Hope Franklin Humanities Institute, Aravamudan will succeed N. Gregson G. Davis on July 1. Davis, Andrew W. Mellon Distinguished Professor of the Humanities in Classical Studies, will be returning to teaching after five years in the post.

Aravamudan specializes in 18th-century British and French literature and postcolonial literature and theory. His book, Tropicopolitans: Colonialism and Agency, 1688-1804 (Duke University Press, 1999), was named the outstanding first book of 2000 by the Modern Language Association. His most recent book, Guru English: South Asian Religion in a Cosmopolitan Language, was published by Princeton University Press in 2006. He has also edited two volumes, Slavery, Abolition, and Emancipation (Pickering and Chatto, 1999), and William Earle's popular antislavery novel of 1800, Obi: or, Three-Fingered Jack (Broadview Press, 2005).

Aravamudan is completing a book-length study of 18th-century French and British oriental tales, entitled Enlightenment Orientalism: Resisting the Rise of the Novel, and also working on another book project on sovereignty theory and political philosophy focused around Thomas Hobbes. His essays have been published in numerous collections and various critical journals.

Aravamudan came to Duke in 2000, having taught previously at the Universities of Utah and Washington. Born and raised in India, he got his BA from Loyola College, Madras (Chennai) University, in 1984. He has MAs from Purdue University (1986) and Cornell University (1988) and a Ph.D. from Cornell (1991).

Aravamudan co-convened the 2002-03 Franklin Humanities Institute seminar entitled, “Race, Justice, and the Politics of Memory.” He is president of the 150-member global Consortium of Humanities Centers and Institutes.

Dean McLendon said the choice of Aravamudan was “particularly influenced by the leadership he's provided to the Franklin Humanities Institute. He has the ability to bring together in conversation humanists from many different disciplines. Coming from a different cultural background gives him some additional insights as we develop a compelling transcultural understanding of humanity through the humanities.”

In his new role, Aravamudan said, he wishes to “build on the existing strengths and accomplishments of the humanities faculty. Duke humanities have been recognized as stellar across the world over the last 20 years and the university will strive to the utmost to maintain that reputation. The current economic challenges will, nonetheless, also help humanities departments recognize their most pressing priorities, and encourage collaboration and rejuvenation over mere reduplication. There is no doubt that humanities at Duke will continue to forge ahead in terms of new configurations of theory and practice, and continued innovations in disciplinary as well as interdisciplinary scholarship.”

Dean McLendon said, “Gregson Davis will be deeply missed. It has been a privilege to have him as a colleague and we are indebted to him for the advances we have made in the arts and in transcultural humanities.”

Anonymous said...

RL alum medicine ‘75

There have been people affiliated with Duke and the Duke case that I have come to admire, I'll add you to my list. I found your Star Wars analogy particularly apt. You are probably right, I'm still here because I'm rooting for the good guys. And the bad guys have not been defeated yet.

As to the commenter who seems to be defending the 88 and said:

"Can I understand where they would have been coming from though? Of course, and I think most of us can."

Most of who? I can't. I can't understand why they have never apologized. I don't know how they live with what they did. And I certainly don't think any of them should be promoted. They harmed their own students and there is nothing I can think of to justify that.

Gary Packwood said...

The members of the G88 did not answer e-mails because as John Updike observed in 1960, "Gods do not answer letters."

RIP Mr. Updike
::
GP

Reference:
Hub Fans Bid Kid Adieu,The New Yorker, 1960

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
Is the word "reduplication" the same as rerepetitive? Rerepeat?

1/27/09 12:43 PM


Reduplication, in linguistics, is a morphological process by which the root or stem of a word, or part of it, is repeated.

Like "mama", "nighty-night", "zig-zag", "poo-poo" ... or "eighty-eight".

RRH

Debrah said...

"Dr. Aravamundan seems well qualified for the position. Was there someone else you felt was more deserving?"

*****************************************

What do you think it takes to perform the duties that Aravamudan will be asked to perform?

Have you not been paying attention for the last few years?

Any number of people---inside or outside the academy---could show up and recite '60's Civil Rights Movement poetry and dialogue. And then devise a new grievance list for the 88.

Next, bow before the portrait of John Hope Franklin inside the Institute each morning.

Never stop repeating how racist the world is and how much more work needs to be done.

Before leaving the building each day, be sure to ask Wahneema if you can be of any assistance to her as she sets the publishing world on fire.

Most anyone could fill this position. The most significant prerequisite being that of compliance under all circumstances.

And perhaps Aravamudan brings a special understanding of the aggrieved since his ancestry is derived from a caste system culture.

It's all one big happy family.

KC Johnson said...

To the 6.49:

I'm afraid I find your comment puzzling. Of course the Group was under no obligation to respond to comments from me. I never claimed it was. No professor is under any obligation to respond to questions from anyone, unless under subpoena.

My response to 2.46 was answering a question. I was asked if I had attempted to contact the Group. I answered that I had. Whether or not they responded to me was fully their choice. Perhaps, as you speculate, they declined to respond for legal reasons, knowing that their actions against their own students had exposed them to potential legal liability.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous at 2:56 PM says...

Now, someone might say: "oh, but [the 88ers] refuse to be interviewed." I would reply that I can understand this. It may not be out of shame or conspiracy that this refusal to speak arises. It may simply be that one does not wish to enter the media

First, being "too shy to enter the media" was never a problem for the 88ers before April, 2006. Why is it now? It is because they know that they cannot support their positions but with lies -- even though they are so dense that they may not even know when they are lying -- and that they will be caught out and embarrassed by people like us. As an example, don't forget the interview Tim Tyson (not an 88er, I know; he must've been sick that day) gave to a newspaper in which he lied about a racially-charged murder case. He got caught and publicly exposed and has not been seen close to a reporter since.

One Spook said...

Anon @ 2:56 writes:

"I have a question for K.C. and any other "scholarly investigators" out there: have any of you actually spoken with all of the professors who signed, or do you just generalize based on the comments of the few more vocal professors?"

KC has provided an answer from his perspective. I know there are others who wrote to or attempted to engage the Group of 88 in dialog, but I am not one of those.

I have my own thoughts as to the paucity of response from the Group of 88 after the astonishing fiasco that was the January 07 "Clarifying Statement."

After the rape charges against the indicted players were dropped in December 2006, I believe that Duke's legal advisers clearly realized that some of the Group of 88's statements constituted tortious acts against Duke students and recommended to Duke administration that they silence this Group of 88 et al, and that was done.

I doubt very seriously if this was done in writing, but something was done, be it "faculty grapevine" or "coffee chats," because after February of 2007, Duke professors ceased any comment.

And clearly, Duke was worried about the potential liability from the acts of these professors because a very specific prohibition against suing Duke professors was included in the multi-million dollar settlement Duke made with the three indicted lacrosse players.

You seem to be new to this Blog. I would encourage you to follow the link on the main page, on the right side, under "MOTIONS AND DOCUMENTS" titled, "Group of 88 membership."

From there you can follow links to numerous comments from Group of 88 members. To paraphrase your words, "I think you'll realize that there is a great deal more information available to us than some claim there is."

There you will find such gems as Professor Charles Piot claiming that the "intent" of Group 88 members “was never to speak to the events at the lacrosse party.” Rather, he makes the absolutely indefensible claim that "the ad in question was never about the lacrosse players nor about the party they hosted in spring 2006."

The careless "scholarly investigator" Piot did not realize that the the cover e-mail inviting professors to sign the ad was already public knowledge. In it, the ad's author, Wahneema Lubiano, wrote this to her colleagues: "African & African-American Studies is placing an ad in The Chronicle about the lacrosse team incident." [my emphasis]

You will also learn that one meeting hosted by certain Group of 88 members to discuss the issues, and billed as a "celebration of academic freedom," barred all recording devices. By any measure, such a prohibition constitutes a laughable display of "academic freedom" to say nothing of restricting a goal of "dialog."

In all honesty, I believe that there are numerous "scholarly investigators" who would be delighted to enter into any dialog with all of the Group of 88.

Enjoy your reading!

One Spook

Anonymous said...

Notice a pattern?

1. Holloway founded Franklin Humanities Institute.
2. Holloway (along with Davidson) direct Franklin Institute.
3. Holloway is dean and hires Aravmudan into her own department.
4. Aravmudan becomes Director of Franklin Institute when Holloway steps down.
5. Aravmudan follows Holloway as Humanities dean.
6. Holloway becomes James B. Duke Professor.

What's next?

One Spook said...

Anon @ 6:49 writes:

"these individuals are under no obligation to respond to you, a blogger."

This is an absurd premise. Are we to assume that had KC written a letter to each of the Group of 88 on nice white CUNY bond stationery that the 88 would have then been obligated to reply?

College professors worldwide will read your statement and be pleased to learn that in "blogging" they are absolved from any necessity of fealty to academic ethics.

KC Johnson blogs using his own name, he has his CV online, and when he Blogs, he additionally places his reputation on the line.

Group of 88 members could have chosen to reply to him in any venue they desired, but they were never obligated to do so; and Johnson is not "whining" about their lack of response. He simply stated that fact that they did not reply.

And, this statement of yours was an incredible howler, "As a blogger you are under no obligation to follow any journalistic code of ethics, such as reporters for established media outlets follow."

Please study the majority of media outlets' coverage of the Duke lacrosse hoax excepting the Duke Chronicle which was outstanding.

Examining that coverage will help you realize that "journalistic code of ethics" belongs in the same oxymoron category as "jumbo shrimp."

One Spook

Anonymous said...

It seems to me that to get an administration position at Duke these days, one needed to have signed the infamous ad.

Don't forget that for the first time in recorded history, the behavior of a university faculty was cited as a reason that Reade, David, and Collin could not receive a fair trial in Durham. Those faculty should be ashamed; they were nothing short of a lynch mob, hiding their acts in dense academic language, but nonetheless acting like a common mob.

The pattern, however, is obvious. Those faculty members who were most vocal in attacking these young men are the ones that Brodhead chose to honor the most. And don't forget that the two students who were most vicious in attacking the lacrosse players and Mike Pressler -- Shadee Malakou and Chancy Nartey -- also received the highest honors Duke student can receive.

This was no accident. Brodhead, Steel, and the others in authority at Duke University were and are making a very, very clear statement.

Anonymous said...

I think my earlier "most of us can" comment was taken way out of context.

What I was addressing was the issue of discrimination that the ad was allegedly intended to address according to the "Clarifying Statement". My point was that, if it was the case that they were telling the truth, we would be hard-pressed to disagree.

To make a claim that discrimination does not exist in our communities is simple ignorance. We all have our biases, and we have all, very likely, encountered situations where we ourselves have been discriminated against. Is this fair? According to most thinking: no. This is all I meant when I said we could probably all agree.

Now, again, this is assuming that the Clarifying Statement was an honest reflection of the intents of the signatories. Can I (or anyone) prove this to be fact? No. For people often report that they will do one thing and then do another. To quote a famous radio drama: who knows what evil lurks in men's minds? (or something to that effect). Still, we can always be charitable.

I point out, respectfully, that not every professor who affixed his or her name to those documents did more than that. Not every person to sign-on to those documents proceeded to engage in the maltreatment and prejudgement of the accused students. Some did, but not all. Some went very public, but not all.

Now, you might say, "oh, but the ad was a prejudgement." I have never heard a convincing argument for this, and I hope I hear one on this forum. The best I ever hear is about Lubiano's letter about the ad being about the Lacrosse Party. At no time, however, does the ad endorse the conviction of the players, or mention their guilt. "Something happened," everyone points to. Well, didn't something happen? Rape? The Law says no, and I follow the Law. That does not mean that stupid things did not occur (on all sides, mind you; I'm not calling-out anyone in particular). Just not necessarily anything illegal.

What is my point here? I suppose it is simply that I find this situation ironic. The major criticism of the 88 signatories is that they were part of a "rush to judgement". Yet this is an accusation made without careful consideration; it is a rush to judgement itself.

Rather than actively malign and belittle others, it seems to me that there is probably a more constructive approach we can take to dealing with this issue. I do not propose we ignore it; I propose we engage one another civilly. Of course, this will be difficult, given the distrust sown between both sides. I think, however, that there is always hope for communication, if we are willing to work for it.

Another idea: has anyone read much of the work these professors have done? Surely we can make better guesses to their thinking if we understand what they write. Given a variety of fields, they might have many different mindsets.

Anonymous said...

Is Aravamudan a Communist?

Anonymous said...

To 6:44,

In my organization, I would rather leave a position unfilled rather that to give said position of authority, responsibility, and stature to the morally/ethically bankrupt.

To my fellow alums who have "resigned" from the Alumni Association, please allow me to persuade you to reconsider donating to Duke every year as was your custom...

Your $0.88 check will be cashed right along side mine. The delicious irony alone is worth the cost of the minor cash contribution, envelope, and stamp.

ES Duke 1990

Anonymous said...

6.49 said…”As a blogger you are under no obligation to follow any journalistic code of ethics, such as reporters for established media outlets follow.”

Having followed this case daily for almost three years, I find this statement hilarious. If anything, the established media outlets have shown that they have no journalistic code of ethics…

Anonymous said...

On "numbers" in the Humanities departments, 1250 is absurd. There are around 500-600 regular rank Arts and Sciences Faculty, a number that is going to get smaller. The Humanities faculty numbers are small relative to Social and Natural Sciences and related disciplines. And they have few students besides. Economics and Biology graduate over 40% of undergrad majors. Add Public Policy (applied economics) and Political Science (in a department that has Munger as Chair) you are likely seeing over 60% of graduating majors. Add Engineering's 300-400 grads, and the Humanities faculty are really stressed that no one seems to want to take their classes, and so have to struggle to get money, since they won't seek money from tainted capitalist sources. The A&S Dean is a chemist. Surprised at the Humanities angst? I'm not. On campus, they are irrelevant. A veritable joke in fact. Noise-making ability does not mean importance. It is a measure of impotence.

Anonymous said...

"Dr. Aravamundan seems well qualified for the position. Was there someone else you felt was more deserving?"

Any of the administrative assistants. At least they would shove the propaganda of race/gender/class down the throats of the rest of us.

"Yes, I know that you wish that these individuals would explain themselves to you, but they're under no obligation to . . ."

What hypocrisy. They egg on a mob to expose innocent students and coaches to public ridicule, then hide under the desire to remain private.

Duke Prof

Anonymous said...

Wow, Duke always seems to know how to tempt me to re-regurgitate. Luckily, I know better and leave it at the bottom of the toilet. I might not next time if I do it the uber-race, gender, class way by re/regurgitating. That "/" makes everything cool!

That last zinger left a mark Professor! RRH and Gary Packwood,your comments were also on point and pointedly hilarious!

@ 7:14 -- I don't think it equates to the usual misdemeanor case because of the wide-spread harm caused by the Duke 88. Moreover, in the usual misdemeanor case, the criminal will be contrite in front of the judge.

Anonymous said...

@ 5:10 One group doesn't dominate another just by numbers. Surely you know that? South Africa is one example, and then there's the people you really hate: Athletes, Sorority and Fraternity members and popular kids. But if you review the list at the end of this post, you'll find a lot of "humanities." And no you aren't allowed to speak for "us."

@ 6:49 is the same writer as 5:10. This is apparent despite the Hardy Boys attempt to throw us off: "but I think that you miss the earlier commenter's point." 5:10 and 6:49's constant and pretty unique use of parentheticals (after the first paragraph) was the dead giveaway. Busted because of your OCD!

Finally, 5:10 & 6:49, or can I split the difference and call you 6:00, the following is a good starter list for you. When you have contacted each of these framers about why they signed the Listening Ad, get back to us. Then, we'll provide the Clarifying Statement list:

Abe, Stan (Art, Art History, and Visual Studies)
Albers, Benjamin (University Writing Program)
Allison, Anne (Cultural Anthropology)
Aravamudan, Srinivas (English)
Baker, Houston (English and AAAS)
Baker, Lee (Cultural Anthropology)
Beckwith, Sarah (English)
Berliner, Paul (Music)
Christina Beaule (University Writing Program)
Blackmore, Connie (AAAS)
Jessica Boa (Religion & University Writing Program)
Boatwright, Mary T. (Classical Studies)
Boero, Silvia (Romance Studies)
Bonilla-Silva, Eduardo (Sociology)
Brim, Matthew (University Writing Program)
Chafe, William (History)
Ching, Leo (Asian & African Languages and Literatures)
Coles, Rom (Political Science)
Cooke, Miriam (Asian & African Languages and Literatures)
Crichlow, Michaeline (AAAS)
Curtis, Kim (Political Science)
Damasceno, Leslie (Romance Studies)
Davidson, Cathy (English)
Deutsch, Sally (History)
Dorfman, Ariel (Literature & Latin American Stds.)
Edwards, Laura (History)
Farred, Grant (Literature)
Fellini, Luciana (Romance Studies)
Fulkerson, Mary McClintock (Divinity School)
Gabara, Esther (Romance Studies)
Gavins, Raymond (History)
Greer, Meg (Romance Studies)
Glymph, Thavolia (History)
Hardt, Michael (Literature)
Harris, Joseph (University Writing Program)
Holloway, Karla (English)
Holsey, Bayo (AAAS)
Hovsepian, Mary (Sociology)
James, Sherman (Public Policy)
Kaplan, Alice (Literature)
Khalsa, Keval Kaur (Dance Program)
Khanna, Ranjana (English)
King, Ashley (Romance Studies)
Koonz, Claudia (History)
Lasch, Peter (Art, Art History, and Visual Studies & Latino/a Studies)
Lee, Dan A. (Math)
Leighten, Pat (Art, Art History, and Visual Studies)
Lentricchia, Frank (Literature)
Light, Caroline (Inst. for Crit. U.S. Stds.)
Litle, Marcy (Comparative Area Studies)
Litzinger, Ralph (Cultural Anthropology)
Longino, Michele (Romance Studies)
Lubiano, Wahneema (AAAS and Literature)
Maffitt, Kenneth(History)
Mahn, Jason (University Writing Program)
Makhulu, Anne-Maria (AAAS)
Mason, Lisa (Surgical Unit-2100)
McClain, Paula (Political Science)
Meintjes, Louise (Music)
Mignolo, Walter (Literature and Romance Studies)
Moreiras, Alberto (Romance Studies)
Neal, Mark Anthony (AAAS)
Nelson, Diane (Cultural Anthropology)
Olcott, Jolie (History)
Parades, Liliana (Romance Studies)
Payne, Charles (AAAS and History)
Pierce-Baker, Charlotte (Women's Studies)
Pebles-Wilkins, Wilma
Petters, Arlie (Math)
Plesser, Ronen (Physics)
Radway, Jan (Literature)
Rankin, Tom (Center for Documentary Studies)
Rego, Marcia (University Writing Program)
Reisinger, Deborah S. (Romance Studies)
Rosenberg, Alex (Philosophy)
Rudy, Kathy (Women's Studies)
Schachter, Marc (English)
Shannon, Laurie (English)
Sigal, Pete (History)
Silverblatt, Irene (Cultural Anthropology)
Somerset, Fiona (English)
Stein, Rebecca (Cultural Anthropology)
Thorne, Susan (History)
Viego, Antonio (Literature)
Vilaros, Teresa (Romance Studies)
Wald, Priscilla (English)
Wallace, Maurice (English and AAAS)
Wong, David (Philosophy)

vw

Anonymous said...

Looks like we have an apologist for the non-apologists!

It is theoretically possible that all 88 of the Group and the additional Clarifiers becaem so intent on discovering their "other" after signing their John Hancocks that they missed the dismissal of all charges and the "innocent" proclamation from the NC AG which would make it incumbent upon them to issue immediate and profuse apologies.

If you have evidence of this kind of obsessive researching and publication from, say, Lubiano, please let us know 5:10. ; )

DANinZA said...

KC,

If I remember correctly, some of the Group of 88 were trying to cobble together an apology, but they got sidetracked studying the etymology of the word "regret" and got stuck, because no one could agree on its meaning and derivation.


Perhaps one of these days we will have a forthcoming scholarly paper on this subject as a substitute for the apology!

Anonymous said...

It is difficult to say if this is a good hire or not without knowing the process involved in his selection. Did Duke open up this position as far as letting people know of the opening and asking for applications from those interested? What is the University policy on this and was this policy followed? Was there a list of qualifications posted and did the one selected meet those qualifications? Is there any information on who else applied and was considered for the job?
Until those questions are answered I just don't think it is fair to be critical of Duke.

Anonymous said...

hman said "Personally, I think they have taken on a Karmic debt that will last a very long time."

For my own small contribution, I "resigned" as a Vanderbilt alumni in protest of the Houston Baker hiring. And I did so quite noisily.

In a nutshell, the actions of the G88 have caused enormous and perhaps irreparable harm to Duke's reputation. They have already inflicted enormous financial harm on Duke, that is increasing exponentially. For the same reasons the G88 defiantly refuse to apologize, the administration is blind to the long term institutional damage that is occurring on their watch. By continuing to promote ardently the agendas of the G88 and their ilk, they are acting as if this somehow will make their worldview come true and that the harsh realities of the real world consequences will thereby disappear. Of course the heart of political correctness is the suppression of false premises.

Anonymous said...

Bill Anderson is right. Duke's response was organized around political correctness, and as awkwardly as that response went forward, it attempted to use power and dishonesty and contempt for the young men who found themselves wrongly caught in these false allegations. The fact tht the allegations were so transparently false was, of course, reason enough for Duke's awkward response and the noticibly biased and racist response of many academics and others who involved themselves in Duke's dihonest attempts to control the public's vision of the affair. These people wanted to crush and discard both the rights of the young men and the young men themselves who were accused while Duke . . . Duke was to stand before the public as some seeminly pristine virtue and protector of justice. There was only one thing wrong with Duke's understanding and insight into its behavior in this . . . they were the ones who were singularly and noticebly wrong. In effect, they were a lynch mob of arrogant academics . . . the know knowings of their class and bleating their sheep-like incandations were the very representation of the political correct bigotry they represent.

Archivist said...

If I were paying for my son to attend college, I would have no choice but to steer him clear of Duke, given its track record of promoting individuals so quick to prejudge based on nothing more than membership into a birth class, yet so slow to apologize when every rational person outside of their little circle knows they were wrong. Their breathtaking disdain for those they have branded as the undeservedly privileged cultural majority would make that an easy decision.

I can think of no industry aside from academia where such bigotry would be tolerated, much less rewarded. Nor do I know of any business that could long survive by treating a sizable portion of its customer base with utter contempt -- just because they are white males.

Anonymous said...

"That members of the Group have consistently been promoted speaks volumes of Duke's future path."

Actually, the one thing that the eighty-eight professors have consistently done has been to leave Duke. A more useful post might be to look at that fact and contrast it to those who have been promoted. Less dramatic, maybe, but more informative.

Just a thought!

Anonymous said...

In spite of the well-deserved criticism Duke gets in this blog, Duke appears to be meeting its fund raising objectives and, according to the N&O, has gotten a record number of applications for the upcoming academic calendar year. Perhaps someone would like to theorize on this apparent disconnect. I find it discouraging.

Anonymous said...

On days when I reflect, I remember 9/11/01 and how dramatically those events changed not only the way I see the world, but, also, the world itself. While the scale and consequences of the Duke LAX events cannot and should not be compared to the horror of 9/11, they, too, have changed the way I see the world and, I believe, at least the legal and academic parts of the world, if not more.The 88ers and Dickie Brodhead want us to "move on" in hopes that we will forget about the errors in judgment, illegal behaviors and violations of individual civil rights ...all based on a series of lies by people who believed(in an almost religious way) that they were doing right and good.

Regardless of what the terrorists and their supporters say or believe, 9/11 continues to impact each of us daily. Regardless of what any 88er says or writes (or refuses to say or write), the massive impact of their terrorist-like thinking and actions have had and will continue to have on Duke University, its alumni and beyond.

Those who planned and carried out 9/11 ,as well as millions of their supporters, believe that their acts were necessary and religious. The 88ers and their colleagues throughout academia believe their acts were necessary as well.

I no longer tell anyone that I went to Duke University because I got tired of the overwhelming negative reaction to Duke because of the LAX case. I fear we cannot muster the resolve to stand up against these bullies the way we did as a nation after 9/11.

Debrah said...

Provocative one in JWR

Anonymous said...

.
I wish to extend a full and complete apology to Ubuntu House at Duke University for believing that it was in any way related to UBUNTU in Durham. After having received a communication from their Vice President Ryan Echternacht, I am satisfied that I was wrong. Here is the communication in which Mr. Echternacht kindly responded to some of my questions:

*************************

Tortmaster,

So our grouped was formed last year, by myself and 3 other freshman. Our only goal was to increase an awareness and instill a greater focus of civic engagement to Duke students.

To answer your questions:
A) Can you tell me what relationship your group has, if any, with any other UBUNTU group?
--We have no relationship to them. We had never heard of them until it was brought up in the forum.

B) Are you planning on using the UBUNTU platform at Duke to attack other Duke students?
--No. Our goals are about personal development through Service Learning. Attacking fellow students is not at all something that would help us, nor something we would ever do.

C) Would you put that in writing in a return email?
--Yes, and you have my fullest permission to reprint and distribute this email.

D) What civic plans does UBUNTU have for the next year?
--Currently, we are forming a partnership with Genesis Home, a local half-way home in Durham. We also have sponsored a day long personal development retreat with the young men at the Durham Nativity School. Also, we are forming a mentorship program with the young men at the Durham Nativity School (related to, but distinct from the aforementioned day camp). And finally, we are in the processing of forming a Duke Engage trip. We intend to continue these activities next year.

E) What civic plans do the individual members have?
--Each of our members is involved with the activities that we do. Our members are also involved with a microfinance program in Uganda, Duke Engage trips to the Philippines, the SOL program (Service Opportunities in Leadership), as well as other courses in the Hart Leadership Program.

F) Has anyone in your group contacted any other UBUNTU groups?
--Not as of the writing of this email. As far as I know, the Durham Ubuntu groups created during the Lacrosse incident have disbanded. I could be wrong, but I have not heard of them during my time hear at Duke (until they were brought up during the forum conversation).

G) Did Nowicki, Chapman, Moneta or anyone else (before the Chronicle brouhaha) inform any of your group about the actions of UBUNTU during the Duke false accusation case?
--No. Truthfully, I do not know if this was intentional in the vein of leaving the past in the past, or if it was that they truly forgot (or had never heard of that particular group). Regardless, no mention of the past group had ever been made to us.

H) Are you planning on asking current LAX players how they feel about the name UBUNTU, including those LAX players who are still on the team, and who actually had to live through that nightmare?
--No. So far, there has been nothing but positive student support. If such an issue arises, we will handle it then. But I think the players understand that there is no connection, (and that if they noticed the name connection, they realize that it was unintentional).

I) If I am satisfied that you are in no way connected to any other UBUNTU organization, I will be more than happy to make a complete apology in the Duke Chronicle blogs for that. On the other hand, if you are not related to any other UBUNTU organization, but you still intend on keeping the UBUNTU name, I believe it is your organization that will need to apologize for that (along with Nowicki, Moneta and Chapman).
--We intend to continue using the name Ubuntu. We feel that the philosophy it represents is more powerful that its unfortunate involvement in the Lacrosse incident. However, I will be making a post in the forum apologizing for the inadvertent connection that we formed. Please accept this apology as the official apology from all involved parties.

If you have any further questions, or an associate of yours has any questions, please contact me again.

Thank you contacting me.

Regards,
--ryan echternacht

VP of Ubuntu

************************

I continue to completely disagree with Ubuntu House of Duke's use of the name Ubuntu, as I think there will be problems in the future with confusion as to the two Ubuntus. But, these men are obviously going to try to do some good. I wish them the best of luck with that along with my apologies. MOO! (My opinions only) Gregory

Gary Hull said...

"'transcultural humanities,' which nudges the institutions of higher education to revise ideas about Western culture."

This statement, by Duke's out-going dean Davis, should alarm anyone who cares about higher eduction and about Duke.

The movement's activists don't "nudge." They become presidents, deans, department chairs et al., in order to transform the very purpose of a liberal arts education.

When they say "revise ideas about Western culture" what they really mean is that the very purpose of college is to propagandize students with a virulently anti-Western ideology. They are quite literally not educators; they are proselytizers. Note their concerted protests whenever there's a campus proposal for a center to study the values of Western civilization -- and their disdain for those few professors who cover such ideas in their courses.

Gary Hull
Duke University

Anonymous said...

To 6:49
"As a blogger you are under no obligation to follow any journalistic code of ethics, such as reporters for established media outlets follow"

You are deluding yourself by thinking reporters follow any so-called 'code of ethics'. Pay attention: journalism isn't what is was supposed to be.

No justice, no peace said...

I never really understood the following quote until I came across the Duke Klan of 88 and their Angry Studies Department contemporaries.

Ironically the Klan of 88 might finally and justly claim a teachable moment.

"When ideas fail, words come in very handy."

--Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Debrah said...

When KC has time, I wish he would go down the list of those who signed the "Clarifying Statement"---duplicating if need be---and do a short profile on each one over a few week's time.

Just as he did in the past.

Even though he's finishing up a new book, has a full teaching schedule as well as keeping up with Wonderland, and must constantly dodge the hordes of pedantic crushes, this would be a fun exercise for us!

Anonymous said...

The 9:58 commentator cannot be serious. First, along with Lubiano's email came the horrible rush-to-judgment screed written by Houston A. Baker. (One Duke faculty member, in reading the email, labeled the whole "ad" process "Fools Rush In.")

Second, the emails in the exchange by supporters of the ad, which I have read, all endorse Baker's letter, and there is no way that one can read Baker's screed without concluding Baker was saying beyond a doubt the lacrosse players had committed rape. So, let us cut the "you are rushing to judgment about those poor 88ers" crap.

I always have been intrigued by how the academic radicals try to hide their intentions through the use of language. When they are not speaking in dense academese, they are out-and-out hiding their real intentions by denying what they obviously are saying.

People like Karla Holloway and Paula McClain are not interested in any kind of an academic "experience" for students. They don't care about learning per se. Instead, there is only hard-left propaganda, and bombastic propaganda that would have made Stalin blush.

The 88ers saw the lacrosse incident as their time to "storm the Winter Palace," and have been richly rewarded for what they did. True, visiting prof. Kim Curtis is gone, as even Duke could not withstand her crude attempts at grade retaliation.

We also need to point out that many of the 88ers were participants in loud and damning public protests against the lacrosse players. The "wanted" posters were copied with university facilities at the John Hope Franklin Center, and no one there was sanctioned for what happened.

So, please end the nonsense about the 88ers being "truth seekers." The last thing these folks wanted was the truth; they wanted to push these lies as the truth so they could say: "See, we told you that these privileged white athletes were a danger to us all. We MUST change Duke University now and put an end to this culture of privilege."

When the case fell apart, they had nowhere to hide. Thus, they fell back on telling even more lies and half-truths.

Look, the purpose of the ad was to declare these kids as a bunch of rapists, period. Since rape has become a political crime today (except when Jermaine Burch does it to a Duke student -- then SHE is to blame, according to Larry Moneta), this was a perfect political opportunity that blew up in their faces.

However, the administration at Duke has gone to great lengths to reward these liars and miscreants. What does that say about Richard Brodhead and Bob Steel?

Debrah said...

I left this in the comment section of Tyson's silly editorial.

Let's see how long it stays up.



Debrah wrote on January, 28 1:22 PM:

TO "Brambilla"--Let's just call it the desperate and ever-present clawing for relevancy.....as we have a clear desire from most intelligent Americans to place this sludge outdated into the annals of obsolescence.

We saw how Tyson rushed to inflame the Duke campus as well as the race-hustlers of Durham as he wrote archaic and embarrassingly bigoted and syrupy op-eds, even though there was no evidence of guilt. Big Tim LOVED it. He was "breakin' bad"!

The criminal Crystal Mangum was found to have had dried semen on her clothing as well as in every body cavity of at least 5 different men----none matching the lacrosse players. Yet Tyson never was required to backtrack and apologize for helping railroad students at the university where he takes home a salary and lays a big table from the proceeds.

"Can ya saya Amen?" "In Jesus name, we-ya pray-ya!"

Timmy " be a backslidin' "........

Anonymous said...

To 9:22

I am skeptical of the data.

My own anecdotal experience with 3 children in college in 3 different states and their peers is that the Duke humanities faculty is a laughingstock among current college students. My business partner is an interviewer of local Harvard applicants. He has also commented on the prevalence of this same perception of Duke among the top HS students he sees. I have a hard time believing that this is an isolated phenomenon.

No justice, no peace said...

Inre: Duke's application pool and fund raising, "...has gotten a record number of applications for the upcoming academic calendar year"

Applications are up everywhere as more students are applying to more schools.

Another factor is that Duke does not discuss any of the CCI or similar initiatives in their campus tours. Also the Angry Studies members are not brought introduced during the presentations. As you might imagine the Angry Studies/Klan of 88 course offerings are not promoted either.

Similarly Duke marketing of their alumni travel tours does not get into the detail of who the faculty members and more importantly what their background/courses include.

Duke Chapel solicitation fail to disclose that their leadership castigated their own students. Mere Christianity indeed.

Were Duke a business, Duke would likely be sued (again) for violating truth-in-advertising tenets. They are fundamentally dishonest by what goes unsaid and what is said.

Don't you think it ironic that the young men who have lived through this injustice have a better chance of getting a job than those graduating with Angry Studies degrees? Character does count in the end. The boys have character in spades.

These are my observations only, but they are primary in nature and include my two children who both passed on Duke. By the way they would have been third generation students with multiple family members as alumni who used to donate - not any more.

We don't even attend local events anymore. Dr. Brodhead came to town recently and though tempted to attend the cocktail party, we could not at all provide tacit support of him or his efforts by attending.

hman said...

When the gang of 88 published their ad, the Lax guys faces and names were already on the front pages and a criminal prosecution was well underway. So, it is really a waste of time for defenders of the statement to point to the vagueness of certain wordings regarding the presumption of guilt or innocence. With this very specific case in the foreground, the only kind of statement that did not ascribe or presume guilt would be one that said, more or less, "We await the outcome of the legal process." Full stop; and then sit down. Indeed, that is what other schools have routinely said about criminal cases involving their students. The ad went so far beyond that that one cannot imagine any point to the exercise if the signers were not assuming (or trying to suggest)substantial guilt. Until a specific case is resolved, it is not really a valid example of anything except an on-going criminal justice process. Treating a specific case as if it were a great reason to condemn the type of crime mentioned in the accusations is psychotic if one still accepts the innocence-until-proven-guily of the accused.

Anonymous said...

"Well, didn't something happen? Rape? The Law says no, and I follow the Law. That does not mean that stupid things did not occur (on all sides, mind you; I'm not calling-out anyone in particular). Just not necessarily anything illegal."

How relevant would it be were I to focus on the fact that Scottsboro would never have happened had the accused in that case not tried to steal a ride on a train without buying tickets? And how moral would it be to suggest that therefore because "something happened", the accused brought what happened on themselves?

Anonymous said...

KC-
Back in the day, you often told us about the academic credentials of many of the Gang of 88. Can you fill us in on some/ any of the publications of the new Dean? Thank you.

Anonymous said...

The demographics of the Duke admissions pool has definitely changed since the lacrosse debacle, but Duke is doing their best to hide it. The big clue was in the first early admissions' group accepted in Fall of 2006. I don't have the exact figures at my fingertips but I remember noticing that there was a much larger percentage of kids who were accepted eary who applied for financial aid. The early decision group formerly was principally alumnae children and those who could pay. Fewer of those are applying to Duke which does not bode well for them as they will have a much greater percentage of financial aid to dole out, and they count on their acceptance of alumnae children to make alums very happy and proud and thus,give, give, give to dear old duke. Before the spring of 2006, Duke was a hot school and there were many kids in our area who turned down the Ivies for Duke because Duke had the reputation of being a great academic environment, great sports, great weather, and was like "one big happy family." Duke has been big time exposed as far as two of the above attractions-academics and "family." Unless it is a family of hamsters whose fathers eat their young......
I am surrounded by many
Duke alums who are totally disgusted with Duke. Applications are up because applicants realize they have a better chance to get into Duke.
In our area, the alumnae apps. are from kids who could not get into a "top" school without the legacy status.
Hi Tom Newbill!!!!!!! MS

cs said...

RL - beautiful. Are you practicing medicine in the UNC/Duke vicinity?

Anonymous said...

I would like to offer
“respectfully” that I was once very susceptible to all high-minded calls for civility. After a combination of Rodney King flashbacks and the realization that high-minded is often accompanied by high-handed, I‘m more inclined to consider them critically (as in, exercising or involving careful judgment or judicious evaluation).

There is a great deal in the sermon at 9:58 with which I would take issue but what struck me was:

“Well, didn't something happen? Rape? The Law says no, and I follow the Law.”

No. There was no rape! Reality said there was no rape. The Facts said there was no rape. The “Law” said the accused were innocent. The “Law” said there was never any credible evidence that a rape occurred. CGM’s allegations were never credible and all the forces and powers aligned against the players could never find any evidence to give her or her allegations any credibility.

and then this:

"That does not mean that stupid things did not occur (on all sides, mind you; I'm not calling-out anyone in particular). Just not necessarily anything illegal."

Is that what’s considered charitable?

I place moral equivalency in the same category as high-handed calls for civility. The party goers should probably never have admitted to the underage drinking (how would anyone prove it) but they were decent young men who admitted what they had done wrong. They regretted that inappropriate comments (actually bad jokes) were made by some. They were willing to accept the consequences of their mistakes. Instead they were subjected to lies and many actions which were, in fact, illegal.

I don’t want to “actively malign and belittle” the opinion but to say some accusation has been made (I’m not sure which accusation is referenced) “without careful consideration” and is thus a “rush to judgement” seems to indicate some sense of clairvoyance. Of course that falls right in line with the “we would be hard pressed to disagree” “we could probably all agree” thinking. Just as I object to this person’s attempts to speak for me, I object to the idea that they somehow know what my “consideration” has been.

Take the comment that this person has “never heard a convincing argument” that the ad was a prejudgment. I have. What I haven’t seen is any “convincing argument” in its defense.

Anonymous said...

KC,
As a fan of your work, why does it surprise you, especially with the election of B. Hussein Obama, who you voted for, that anything but this would happen.
Being such a purveyor of truth on this one issue, how could you be blinded to Obama's true agenda; conform, socialize and resurrect America to the 88's agenda. Beware the next four years.
There's is now talk, from Obama himself, that we should not listen from other American voices and that they should be silenced: I.E. Rush Limbaugh and talk radio. Is this not a facsimile which Hitler used to conform all Germans under the idealism of Third Reich? One governmental source of all news, those who disagree are shutdown and disowned.
All of the MSM, since his declaration for the presidency two years ago, have and continue to be Obama's mouth piece. Where is the free press which is supposed to keep a check on government's abusive power? With a left wing media there's none. What do you think the writer's of the Constitution and Bill of Rights would say today. Why did they put this as the First Amendment?

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."

Believe me, it wasn't because they wanted the press to accommodate every bill and whim, no question asked, for whomever was in office!

KC, I have three questions:

Do you support the annihilation of talk radio through government censorship.
Do you support the annihilation of free enterprise which Obama's 850 Billion bail-out pork bill will destroy.
Do you support revocation of our Constitution and Bill Of Rights, provided by the founding Fathers of this country?
If your answer to these questions are yes, you need go no further in your quest for truth within the Duke/Lacrosse case; you are on the opposing side. If however, your answer is NO then you must explain to me, not only how, but especially why, you voted to put a man in office, that believes the exact opposite of you?

Anonymous said...

To ES Duke 1990....

I too am an annual $0.88 contributor. You can do it online so it does not cost you for the stamp and envelope.

Duke will automatically send you out a thank you letter for your tax records. I am sure it costs them more than 88 cents to send the letter out between postage, credit card fees, and labor.

Debrah said...

"Character does count in the end."


Of course that should be true.

It's what you're taught as a little kid along with all the mantras detailing good behavior; however, I really don't think character wins out most of the time anymore.

We want it to.

We hope that it does.

But in this case, character counted for nothing.

And that fact was not only accepted, but rewarded as KC points out all the time with regard to the academy.

The seasoned attorneys whom Reade, Collin, and David were able to hire would probably have been able save them from the lynch mob at Duke and in Durham no matter what.......however.......

.......only with KC's daily zeal of chronicling and analyzing and then explaining to his readers what was actually taking place inside the underbelly of Duke and the academy in general, would the full magnitude of this wretched Hoax have been understood by the public.

An entire layer was added by Stuart and KC in UPI.

But the heart and soul was KC.

maltesse3 said...

It's ridiculous just how many people can be so gullible and led like sheep by someone like Tim Tyson and the whole entertainment and media industries. All you have to do is write a pro-black, anti-white book basically rehashing 40 year old history and embellishing it from the first sentence even to his sources with LIES, distortions, and honors will be heaped upon your head.... Just like he did in Blood Done Sign My Name.....
If Tyson were to write another book, only pro-gay, anti-straight this time, he would probably be crowned the finest literary talent in the history of the world..... I am sure he can gather up his old Rat Fink Club and get the job done. They will love to listen to Tim's Tall Tales......

Tyson's embarrassing ranting during the Duke Lacrosse fiasco is further proof of his anti-white leanings. And like that other Wacko, Nifong, Tyson will not even admit he is wrong when proven so....Little pity partier excuse is "well every book has it's flaws" ....BS. It's STUPID to even think somebody paid out their yeng-yang to be taught from a flawed book! Woopy do..... well there is a big difference between a flaw and a bunch of lies.

If Tim and his Dad think God is on their side they are not reading the same Bible I am. They seek only to GLORIFY themselves, and the Lord has some pretty definite things to say about that in His book.
And don't forget his other Chums. The Securities and Exchange Commission has launched an investigation of Duke Trustees chairman Bob Steel. And
Here Steel contributated Millions to Tyson's little racial movie. Was it his own personal money out of his piggy bank? And then that group of 88, like a bunch of Foxes guarding the hen house.
Wake -Up readers find out the truth about Tim Tyson Here

Anonymous said...

@ 7:20 AM wrote: "Until those questions are answered I just don't think it is fair to be critical of Duke."

I would tend to agree with you 7:20 if Duke had appointed Aravamundan the Dean of Inhumanities, but then the question would have been: "Why him over the other 87?"

***********

Did Blagojevich turn them down?

***********

If Duke could not find a Humanities professor on campus who had not joined in the rush to judgment and attempted framing of his or her own students -- then failed to apologize for it -- they could have looked off campus.

***********

Aravamundan only has THREE MORE DAYS remaining to rush to judgment in the case of Michael Jermaine Burch. Mr. Burch is alleged to have raped a white, female Duke student almost exactly 2 years ago, and he is scheduled for court on Monday. It took Aravamundan less than 2 weeks to presume the guilt of his own students, but when it comes to his own student's attacker:

TICK, TOCK; TICK, TOCK.

***********

"DUKE PUBLIC RELATIONS. For Immediate Release. July 8, 2008. Duke University is currently accepting applications for one (1) full-time position as Dean of Humanities, Main Campus. Minimum requirements include a degree in Angry Studies or equivalent practical Rush to Judgment experience. A qualified candidate should be unintelligible, unapologetic and unsympathetic. Interested parties should send a cover letter, CV and list of 4 evil deeds to ...."

***********

MOO! (My opinions Only) Gregory

No justice, no peace said...

The notion of the Klan of 88 and Duke administrators as victims reminds me of the lies spread by Communists to alter public opinion after President Hoover called upon the army to break up the veterans rallies in 1932.

"I have seen the sabres gleaming as they lopped off veterans' ears'" is one such example.

Similarly the Klan of 88, Steel, Brodhead and others want to be seen as horribly treated victims.

Another big lie. As we all know there were no gleaming sabres lopping off any ears within the Duke community. Instead they were abetting efforts to put three innocent students in jail for thirty years.

Anonymous said...

I would be skeptical about the figures that Duke is releasing about applications for the Class of 2013 as well as their fundraising. Keep in mind that anyone who gives $0.88 is counted (and those who are alumni who give the $0.88 will be counted as being loyal alumni supporters). Also, funds can be shifted from one account to another to show increases where none occurs. Let's face it, there is a lot of creating accounting going on (Madoffs,etc.) out there and what makes one think that Duke might not be engaged in some numbers massaging in various areas?
cks

Jim in San Diego said...

6:49 said... "As a blogger you are under no obligation to follow any journalistic code of ethics, such as reporters for established media outlets follow"

hmmmmmm...

Let us make a list of all media outlets of any kind who, in their Duke Rape Hoax reporting, did all of the following:

-Uniformly presented rational arguments supported by actual, verifiable facts, often including direct links to original sources so the reader could form their own opinions of the accuracy of the reporting.

-Submitted their reporting to immediate public critique by a wide range of readers, both supportive and not.

-Published those critiques even when unflattering of the reporter.

-Followed up on stories with second, third, and fourth cuts as new facts emerged.

-Publicly responded to criticism with either (a) an apology and correction, or (b) further facts and analysis, again linked to original materials for the benefit of the reader.

-Repeatedly offered those who disagree with him a forum, if they wished, to present whatever contrary views they cared to express.

-Maintained a passion for the truth long after the bad actors in the story had 'moved on'.

Here is the complete list of such reporters:

1. K C Johnson and his BLOG, "Durham in Wonderland".

2. ........

3. ........

4. ........

We have had the opportunity to glimpse the future of good reporting. Blog technology is revolutionary. The owner of this blog has shown the amazing possibilities that are here, if we can only use them.

Jim Peterson

Debrah said...

TO 8:53 PM---

That again?

I voted for Obama because I simply like him as a person and everyone was ready for another direction.

But more important, I wanted him to win in order to help neutralize the race-hustlers of this country.

That's already beginning to happen.

Obama wants to succeed. He might placate the Far Left and toss them a bone on certain issues; however, the basic policies of so many issues---none more significant than Middle Eastern policy---will remain essentially the same.

Do you think Obama wants to be the man in charge if we were to be hit again after dismantling current security measures?

And regarding Limbaugh, even conservatives are saying that he should not have said what he said.

Both sides of the aisle are using straw arguments to get some attention and face-time.

Anonymous said...

Duke's fundraising numbers may not be as strong as they appear, particularly in terms of support from alumni and parents. A significant portion of Duke's fundraising comes from a handful of very large donors who have very close relationships with Duke , e.g. The Duke Endowment and the Gates Foundation. I suspect Duke used these relationships to manage/accelerate contributions so as to not show any ill effects from Duke's mishandling of the lacrosse incident.

The following observations are based on information from Duke Development's annual reports for the fiscal years ended 6/30/08 and 6/30/07.

---Total contributions in fiscal 2008 were about $ 386 million compared to about $ 380 million in fiscal 2007 --- an increase of about 1.5%, which is less than inflation over this one year period. The year to year increase is even weaker when one considers that , based on demographics, the total number of alumni likely increased between 2007 and 2008.

--- The percentage of total contributions directly from alumni and parents for fiscal 2008 was 19 %, compared to 23% and 28% respectively for 2007 and 2006. It appears that contributions from alumni decreased by roughly $ 15 million ( about 20%) from 2007 to 2008. About 41,000 alumni made contributions in 2008, approximately the same number as in 2007. I believe the number of alumni contributing in these years is somewhat overstated since there are some who contributed a ridiculously low amount, e.g 88 cents , to express displeasure with Duke's handling of the lacrosse incident. About 45,000 alumni contributed in fiscal 2006.

--- The Duke Endowment ( TDE ) makes significant contributions to Duke --- about $ 78 million in fiscal 2008 and $ 75 million in 2007. This represents about 20 % of total contributions. The relationship between Duke and TDE is unusual ( unique ? ) and TDE is, in effect, a captive donor to Duke. Originally, the Duke family " separately " endowed the University and TDE but with the requirement in TDE's charter that a significant portion of its annual grants go to Duke. If Duke had been founded as other universities/colleges, all of the original funding from the Duke family would have gone to the University. As such, TDE would not have existed and its annual grants would instead be additional investment earnings on the University's endowment. Recognizing TDE's contributions in Duke's fundraising numbers is very misleading, particularly when comparing Duke's numbers to those of other universities. The bottom line is that, in terms of fundraising, TDE is a very nice security blanket for Duke's leadership.


Given the recessionary economy and the real possibility of damaging ( to Duke ) information becoming publicly available in conection with the lacrosse related civil suits, contributions to Duke will probably be much lower in fiscal 2009 than in 2008.

BN

Debrah said...

Tracy Cline wanted to avoid a conflict of interest.

LIS!

Anonymous said...

Let us examine two issues. First,the claim by Dickie Brodhead that contributions to Duke are "up". In reality, the largest contributions to Duke come from 1)The Duke Endowment where relationships among and between the Duke Family extended and current Duke Board members is more than incestuous, 2)Wall Street and Fortune 500 financial firms chaired by members of Duke's Board of Trustees, and 3)A few mega-wealthy alumni who have, in great measure, garnered their wealth(and thus their ability to give to Duke) from their steller work on Wall Street. Eliminate these categories and those who give to the Iron Dukes in hopes of getting tickets to Cameron and the numbers of REAL givers shrinks dramatically. Second, Dickie's claim that applications are "up". Come on, My dsaughter was advised by her "giudance Councellor" that since all applications are automated, "apply to the top 25 schools" by the stroke of a key. It's the old shotgun technique. Fire off many applications and you are bound to "hit" something. My daughter was , also, told that Duke, and several other schools specifically, now have a reputational bias toward students who express an interest in Women's Studies and African American Studies. I was appalled. But these nuances helped me understand, in part, why applications may be "up" at Duke.

Unfortunately, neither increased contributions nor increased applications prove that Duke's reputation nationally and internationally has improved. The universities of Alabama, Nississippi and Arkansa have never recovered academically from identification with civil rights violations in the 1960's.

And their applications and contributions are "reputed" to be "up".

As long as Bobby Steele Chairs Duke's Board, Dickie Brodhead continues to mangle the university in support of Angry Studies and the Board is filled with financial mobsters like John Mack, Duke's reputation continues its downward spiral.

mb said...

Anon on 1/27/09 at 6:49 pm wrote: "As a blogger you are under no obligation to follow any journalistic code of ethics, such as reporters for established media outlets follow. Certainly you have, but you have done so of your own volition...The blogosphere is noted for many things (many good, some bad), but fairness is not one of them."

The above gave me a hearty laugh.

Indeed. I believe KC has been far more ethical and fair than most journalists in our current "established media outlets" were during the Duke non-rape fiasco.

Presumably the same person wrote at 9:58 on the same day: "The major criticism of the 88 signatories is that they were part of a "rush to judgement". Yet this is an accusation made without careful consideration; it is a rush to judgement itself." and then "Another idea: has anyone read much of the work these professors have done? Surely we can make better guesses to their thinking if we understand what they write."

Sir/Madam, I would like to humbly suggest that you thoroughly peruse this blog and carefully read UPI before you make such ludicrous statements.

Archivist on 1/28/09 at 8:38 am said: "I can think of no industry aside from academia where such bigotry would be tolerated, much less rewarded. Nor do I know of any business that could long survive by treating a sizable portion of its customer base with utter contempt -- just because they are white males."

You stated exactly what I've been thinking since the non-rape event imploded in on itself.

Anonymous said...

Re: Duke applications/admissions.

Among the nation's leading high school graduates, Duke transformed itself from a "hot" school back to a "Southern" school almost overnight due to its conduct during the Lax Hoax. For competitive HS graduates with serious college choices, Duke is now viewed as a back-up school, at best, and an expensive one at that.

This changed, of course, fueled another. Although the raw number of Duke applications may have increased, overall applicant *quality* has declined. The applicant "surge" owes to the popular perception that it's now "easy" to get into Duke.

All told, not a pretty picture for Duke-dom. So much for Duke's "Ivy Strategy."

Anonymous said...

@ 2:56 PM

"I have a question for K.C. and any other "scholarly investigators" out there

I acknowledge that I am not a scholar amd therefore, in academic eyes, an "untermensch." I understand your academic opinion that only academically certified scholars are human beings whose views are worth considering.

"have any of you actually spoken with all of the professors who signed, or do you just generalize based on the comments of the few more vocal professors?"

No. I have not spoken to any of the slime molds who signed the ad: I admit to having standards of behavior, however idiosyncratic they may be. What initially brought me to this site was Cathy Davidson's op/ed, in which she essentially claimed that no one could challenge her because she was a person "of conscience," and the rest of us mere scum without consciences or possibly even humanity. Only she, and her self-selected buddies, have opinions that count. Fuck her, assuming you are grossly indiscriminate and very desperate.

"I ask this in earnest. It seems to me that, in such a small sample (88 is not a large group), there could be a plethora of mindsets, opinions, what-have-you that went into this situation."

Unless you define plethora to mean "at most 88," no, there could not have been a plethora of mindsets. And in any case all of them signed the identical statement, which presumably each was competent to parse independently. Thus, each must have found the statement compatible with his or her more opinions, whether or not somewhat more nuanced.(Actually 87, because I shall always exclude Mr. Petters from my contempt.)

"Most of the commentaries I have read, however, are opinions based off of general statements. If we really want to know what's going on in peoples' minds, I do not think we should be satisfied with such limited research."

"Most of the comments" have nothing to do with a general statements. They comment upon a specific statement signed by specific people who are self-proclaimed scholars, most associated with the humanities. If those scholars sign on to a statement that they were unable to comprehend, then any disparaging responses on their intellect are deserved. If they understood the statement, disagreed, but subscribed anyway, they are liars, pure and simple. And if they agreed that the presumption of innocence does not apply to people of a certain class, or gender, or race, then they fully warrant to be identified as the Nazis that they are.

JeffM

Anonymous said...

I wish I could claim credit for this quote, but I found it in a book review over at Amazon.com:

"American professors, in the main, have elevated anti-intellectualism to high virtue; they sneer, in fact, at true academic inquiry. Their presence and efforts have cheapened and debased, if not destroyed, the academy."

Some of us are familiar with how 100 years ago the Marxists -- proponents the most anti-liberal ideology ever -- kidnapped the word "liberal" and thus the term now means the opposite of what it meant then in America (and what it still means in the rest of the world). I am becoming convinced that the Marxists today -- as anti-intellectuals -- are claiming they are the intellectuals. In the end, they will do to the word "intellectual" what they've done to "liberal" -- turn it from a term of respect to one of derision, but in the meanwhile they claim the right to call us, their intellectually superior opponents, "anti-intellectuals."

I wish I could recall the DiW commenter who said it, because now I do see the "Gramscian 'Long March Through the Institutions'". Mark Anthony Neal, in the same moronic diatribe in which he introduced his "Thugniggaintellectual" persona, described Gramsci as his "main man". Coincidence?

RRH

Anonymous said...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=THdWWSXoa0s&eurl=http://www.bilerico.com/2009/01/short_interviews_on_race_relations_in_th.php A new interview with Manju Rajendran on racism in the gay/lesbian communities. Can you imagine the gall of that creature complaining about discrimination after her antics (still unapologized for) in Durham in 2006?

Anonymous said...

The N&O has an early article on Prof. Johnson's utilization of rigorous standards on this blog. The link to the 10/06 article is easy to find on DIW -- http://www.newsobserver.com/266/story/501346.html

As to Duke's reputation among college students and recruits, from what I hear from disparate student sources there is more to it than simply the handling of the lacrosse case. The "laughingstock" reference I made earlier includes the thin credentials of so many humanities professors,the pervasive absence of any genuine scholarship and the incestuous subsidization of what little publications there are by Duke Press. Prof. Johnson's systematic exposure, to scholarly standards, of this component of Duke's faculty has obviously influenced this perception.

gwallan said...

DANinZA said...
If I remember correctly, some of the Group of 88 were trying to cobble together an apology, but they got sidetracked studying the etymology of the word "regret" and got stuck, because no one could agree on its meaning and derivation.

Confusing it with "reregret" no doubt.

Anonymous said...

KC,
I know you are a very busy individual, not only with this blog, but also engagements pertaining to your academic responsibilities as well. I am anonymous, 1/28/09 8:53 PM, here known as Joseph R. Schwerzler. I would greatly appreciate your input on the following:

KC,
As a fan of your work, why does it surprise you, especially with the election of B. Hussein Obama, who you voted for, that anything but this would happen.
Being such a purveyor of truth on this one issue, how could you be blinded to Obama's true agenda; conform, socialize and resurrect America to the 88's agenda. Beware the next four years.
There's is now talk, from Obama himself, that we should not listen from other American voices and that they should be silenced: I.E. Rush Limbaugh and talk radio. Is this not a facsimile which Hitler used to conform all Germans under the idealism of Third Reich? One governmental source of all news, those who disagree are shutdown and disowned.
All of the MSM, since his declaration for the presidency two years ago, have and continue to be Obama's mouth piece. Where is the free press which is supposed to keep a check on government's abusive power? With a left wing media there's none. What do you think the writer's of the Constitution and Bill of Rights would say today. Why did they put this as the First Amendment?

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."

Believe me, it wasn't because they wanted the press to accommodate every bill and whim, no question asked, for whomever was in office!

KC, I have three questions:

Do you support the annihilation of talk radio through government censorship.
Do you support the annihilation of free enterprise which Obama's 850 Billion bail-out pork bill will destroy.
Do you support revocation of our Constitution and Bill Of Rights, provided by the founding Fathers of this country?
If your answer to these questions are yes, you need go no further in your quest for truth within the Duke/Lacrosse case; you are on the opposing side. If however, your answer is NO then you must explain to me, not only how, but especially why, you voted to put a man in office, that believes the exact opposite of you?

1/28/09 8:53 PM

Awaiting your answer.

Joseph R. Schwerzler

KC Johnson said...

To the 4.44:

The question is off topic, but I'll answer, since it's from a longtime reader. I won't be clearing followup comments, etc.--this isn't a blog about contemporary politics.

To take the questions in reverse order:

Do you support revocation of our Constitution and Bill Of Rights, provided by the founding Fathers of this country?

A: No.

Do you support the annihilation of free enterprise which Obama's 850 Billion bail-out pork bill will destroy.

A: The most persuasive piece I've read on the stimulus is from Martin Feldstein--no Marxist radical--arguing (persuasively) that the bill's central problem is that it doesn't stimulate enough, in large part because it doesn't have enough stimulative spending and is too filled with tax cuts (around 30% of the package).

From a historical perspective, it seems to me the lesson of the Depression is that in the rare instances when we have this type of meltdown, a massive infusion of government spending is necessary.

Do you support the annihilation of talk radio through government censorship.

A: No. I'll offer a prediction: as about the same percentage of Congress supports reinstituting the Fairness Doctrine as supports reinstituting the gold standard, I predict the f.d. will reappear about when the gold standard does--i.e., never.

Anonymous said...

KC:

"that the bill's central problem is that it doesn't stimulate enough, in large part because it doesn't have enough stimulative spending and is too filled with tax cuts (around 30% of the package)"

So.....you are convinced the US government is better able to spend dollars more efficiently (and quickly) than the US consumer? I think most over the age of 30 would disagree.

That's the problem with politics. Supporters are always asked to defend the indefensible.

Good luck.

Ken
Dallas

Michael said...

I'd love to discuss the gold standard but there are better places for that.

I just learned about the radio show ten minutes before the end. Will there be a podcast available somewhere?

I have two kids in college now; one a dual-enrollment high-school junior and the other a regular student. The kids have told me that there is very little of the political stuff in their classes.

KC Johnson said...

To Ken:

It's off topic, but I'll respond:

"So.....you are convinced the US government is better able to spend dollars more efficiently (and quickly) than the US consumer? I think most over the age of 30 would disagree."

In general, I am not so convinced. But the most persuasive interpretation of the Depression's economic history suggests that there are (rare) economic collapses in which underconsumption and a deflationary spiral combine, and in which only a massive infusion of spending can get the economy back on track--on a scale that can only be accomplished by the government. For the US in the Depression, of course, this was accomplished less in the (relatively retrained spending of the) New Deal and more in the massive spending of WWII. It does seem to me we're in a similar situation now.

This doesn't strike me as a particularly "political" initiative (as opposed, say, to an administration health care plan, or energy plan): it's my sense that if Bush's term had lasted another year, he would have pursued essentially the same short-term policy as Obama is now.