Fascinating Fascism

During intermission yesterday at the otherwise way gloomy Siege of Calais at Glimmerglass, UD was amused to see a woman wearing this t-shirt.

UD’s Birthday in the Countryside

Family, cat, birthday breakfast.

View with cupcake.

Chinese goodies, a gift from Ashley,
a student of UD‘s from China.

Geoffrey Stone, a law prof at the University of Chicago, has long been a …

hero of mine. Especially today, with Stone’s release of an email exchange he had with the notorious Richard Spencer.

In an April 18 op-ed in the New York Times, Stone defended Spencer’s First Amendment right to speak at Auburn University.

According to Stone, he received an e-mail from Spencer thanking him for his piece saying, “[he thinks] it will be looked back upon as significant in changing the contemporary free-speech debate.”

In the e-mail, Spencer also expressed his desire to return to his alma mater for a speaking event.

… Stone wrote back, saying that he thought Spencer’s views were not worth discussing, and that he would not extend him an invitation.

“My strong support for the right of students and faculty to invite speakers to campus to address whatever views they think worth discussing does not mean that I personally think that all views are worth discussing. From what I have seen of your views, they do not seem to me [to] add anything of value to serious and reasoned discourse, which is of course the central goal of a university. Thus, although I would defend the right of others to invite you to speak, I don’t see any reason for me to encourage or to endorse such an event.”

More here.

The Life of the Mind …

… at the University of Florida.

[Several University of Florida football] players were alleged to have to taken part in a scheme that saw them purchase electronic products with school-issued [student aid] debit cards before selling them for cash. While this practice is not uncommon in college football, the Gators’ players then went to university officials to report their cards stolen, triggering a school investigation into possible credit card fraud. After investigation officials deemed the cards were not stolen and looked into the purchases, they found the players at fault for misusing funds given to them.

Here’s more on one of the guys, the team’s “top play-maker,” Antonio Calloway.

This is not the first time Callaway has faced suspension during his time at Florida. He was suspended last spring amid sexual assault allegations. Callaway was accused of sexual assault in December of 2015 but testified that he was “high on marijuana” during the incident and was “so stoned I had no interest in having sex with anyone.”

Your education tax dollars at work.

The tea’s the thing…

… I’ll be bringing to the Soltan
place in upstate NY tomorrow.

UD‘s ‘thesda house is crammed with very carefully chosen teas – mainly black fruit brews from all over – and she had to give some thought to what she’d select from all that to take to Budy.

Budy‘s the official Polish name of our one little house, one littler semi-collapsed house, one pond, twenty acres, spectacular views, spread. The word means “Shacks.”

Say BOO dee.

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This particular tea was a gift from two students of UD’s. They came back to DC from NY to attend one of UD‘s poetry lectures at the Georgetown Library, and with them they brought this tea. UD chose it not only because it’s excellent, but because it’s in sachet form, and Budy is not well-provisioned for brewing good loose tea.

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So the tea’s the central thing, but this picture discloses so much more about UD. Her much-played baby grand speaks to your blogger’s long, incredibly amateurish, devotion to the instrument (and to singing along, less amateurishly, to what she plays). The featured music is the very same adagio cantabile UD’s father also spent years swooning over at the keyboard. There are also, in this picture, books and vases and ancestors and tall windows with greenery outside of them — and all of this, as well, is very UD.

Anyway, she leaves tomorrow morning to celebrate her birthday up there. She will blog about the experience.

Shall I Sue?

Time to wheel onstage at the University of Louisville John Dowland’s melancholy air.

Now that the school’s longtime chiseling president and his cronies (some of them? most of them?) have been, uh, made to absent themselves from felicity, the question is: Shall we sue to get back at least a little of the tens of millions they seem to have .. taken? Or shall we, as we desperately seek a new president, say fuck it – We’ll never find a non-larcenous president if we’re on the front page of every paper in the country – UNIVERSITY SUES PRESIDENT FOR MILLIONS IN STOLEN FUNDS — a national embarrassment, a school universally ridiculed as the U of Smell for years of financial and sexual scandals… Plus it’ll cost a fortune to sue these assholes…

ON THE OTHER HAND! It somewhat rankles that Ramsey took all our money and bought four houses and …

Auditors determined Ramsey was paid $12.4 million by the university and the [university’s fund-raising] foundation [which Ramsey also ran!!] from 2010 through 2016, including $7.2 million in deferred compensation. The report shows Ramsey and eight other employees collected $21.8 million in deferred compensation, apparently without foundation board approval.

Two days after his forced resignation last July, Ramsey and his wife paid $800,000 in cash for a 4,200-square-foot home in Miramar Beach, Florida. They also own two other Florida properties purchased for a combined $1.08 million, as well as a $470,000 home in Oldham County.

Yeah, don’t worry ’bout little Jim Ramsey!

“Don’t worry about me. Nobody is more blessed than Jim Ramsey of Fern Creek, Ky.”

Little Jimbo! Blessed, blessed, a thousand times blessed! Just a little ol’ fella from Fern Creek, Ky!

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

All the rats are scrambling:

[E]x-foundation officer Kathleen Smith, who was fired in June, [has reportedly] recently moved about $800,000 worth of properties to limited liability corporations.

I mean, the endowment was just sitting there:

[T]he foundation’s officers and directors depleted the university’s endowment to fund excessive spending on compensation, football tickets and bad investments in real estate and start-up companies.

Hate to quote myself, but…

How did U of L get so bad? Just put it together. Just put it all together: The southland, good old boys, football, basketball, sex, and money. Add a hundred jiggers of Kentucky bourbon for a brilliant finish.

This here’s a BIG ol’ story, folks. Hold on to your hats.

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

Words fail me.

“The jury found 62-year old Clarence Scranage, Jr., guilty on all counts. [He was described as] a one-man opioid epidemic.”

I know you’ve been waiting for an update on the fate of this guy. We covered his legal argument that because of something having to do with the history of the post office he lies outside the jurisdiction of American courts.

He also represented himself in the case.

Apparently these approaches to his problem did not solve it.

Hiding Out in the Lasch Building

Whether you’re hiding out in the showers or in the Lasch Building; whether you’re raping a boy or avoiding a subpoena… There’s always something happening at Penn State University!

UD’s Jet Setting Kid Spends Today…

… at the Dublin Horse Show.

She sends this snap.

No Wonder His Holiness Looks a Little Shocked.

Wait a minute. I’m on a university board with Vinod Khosla?

The board of an academic center dedicated to global poverty and inequality??

Are you fucking kidding me?

Unfortunately for this guy, he worked at Lehman.

If he’d had a good lawyer, he’d somehow have been able to keep that from getting out. Talk about prejudicing his case.

At the very least, he needs to figure out a way to keep his ex-boss off the stand: “He did that? Good man.”

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

He’s been eliminated as a suspect.

Pain, Patronage, and Plagiarism: Issues in Quality Control

Opioid, corruption, and plagiarism epidemics – on this blog, we do the university angle on these endemic elements of social life.

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So there’s the provocative new paper offering evidence that the lower ranked your medical school, the more likely you are to prescribe lots of opioids. Although some observers have noted gaps in the evidence-gathering (the paper’s authors have responded to the criticism), the paper’s conclusion seems to ol’ UD pretty sound – not because less-burnished grads are less intelligent, but because their patient load is liable to be larger, tempting them to save time by tossing OxyContin about; and because UD suspects foreign-born/foreign-educated doctors are easier to intimidate/fool.

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You can’t keep a well-connected malefactor down. Park Ky-young’s friends in South Korea’s government have just appointed her chief of the Science, Technology and Innovation Office at the Ministry of Science and ICT, despite her having co-authored the study at the heart of that country’s biggest scientific fraud of modern times. You may remember the stamp (scroll down) South Korea rushed into production, showing a man in a wheelchair elatedly getting up and walking because of a professor’s exciting new stem cell work that turned out to be entirely bogus. It was a huge national embarrassment. But all is forgiven.

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Metaplage is UD‘s term for the act of plagiarizing from already plagiarized material. It’s the sort of viral load, call it, one expects to arise under global-pandemic copying conditions. A recent example is a local VIP (school superintendent, head of trustees at a community college, candidate for a seat on a local county commission) who plagiarized his commencement speech at the community college from a guy who plagiarized his college commencement speech from a poet who wrote this skin-crawling crawl down the alphabet.

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Nothing, by the way, will beat the plagiarized 2011 commencement speech given by the dean of the University of Alberta medical school. As he spoke, some students began recognizing its source and followed along word for word on their cell phones.

Architectural Digest

My striated rain forest stones arrived.

I put them on the coffee table.

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

Outside, finally a beautiful day.

As we wait for the Chico Choppers to remember their court date…

let us recall that the object of American university fraternity sadism is usually human rather than arboreal. And let us note that no matter how far apart one fraternity culture is from another (urban Asian-American, rural non-Asian), the defining commitment uniting them is wanton viciousness toward helpless young men interested in joining their club.

This long New York Times article sensitively evokes the particularities of the immigrant culture from which many members of manslaughtering Pi Delta Psi emerge; yet how striking to see that, however diverse, these young men haze in exactly the same humiliating and sometimes homicidal way – including criminal neglect of the dying – as much more mainstream fraternities.

On May 15, three and a half years after Michael Deng’s death, [his fraternity brothers] Kwan, Lai, Lam and Wong again filed into [a] Stroudsburg [Pennsylvania] courtroom, where dark oil paintings of dead men hung on the walls, framed by dusty red drapes. Just two weeks before, eight brothers who belonged to Penn State’s Beta Theta Pi fraternity were charged with manslaughter in yet another hazing death, this one involving an 18-year-old pledge named Timothy Piazza. The similarities between the two cases — Piazza, like Deng, died after going through something called “the gauntlet” (though physical abuse was not part of the ritual) — brought out more reporters than might have been expected, and as they set up in the hallways of the courthouse, many of the questions were about Penn State.

(Not physical abuse; alcohol abuse. Piazza was basically made fatally drunk.).

One might recall here yet more cultural diversity/brutalization unity in the death of Robert Champion at FAMU… And of course one can name, over the years, yet others.

However different we Americans may be on the surface, we are apparently all one when it comes to deriving collective pleasure from abusing other people until they die.

“You can get away with the most extraordinary offenses to morality and to truth in this country if you’ll just get yourself called Reverend.”

And, Christopher Hitchens might had added, you don’t even have to go that far. Dave Bliss, notorious head basketball coach at notorious Baylor University, has been hired by yet another Christian school.

He broke rule after rule at the college level, even dragging the reputation of a murdered player through the mud, but none of that seems to matter … What are the students at Calvary Chapel Christian School supposed to think about all this? You can break every rule in the book and become synonymous with disgrace in coaching, but as long as you say you love Jesus, none of it matters?

No. They’re supposed to think that you have to say you love Jesus PLUS be a great basketball coach and none of it matters.

UD anticipates that with each new Bliss scandal and firing he’ll be hired by a Christian school with a longer name. He’s up to three adjectives at the moment – Calvary Chapel Christian – but UD has noticed that the scummier the diploma mill (these places exist to provide fake high school graduation records for athletes so they can be admitted to jockshops like Baylor), the longer and more feverishly pious its name.

So Bliss’s next stop will be Consecrated Calvary Chapel Christian School. Then Celestial Consecrated Calvary Chapel Christian School. Then Chosen Celestial Consecrated Cavalry Christian School. Then Charismatic Chosen Celestial Consecrated Cavalry Christian School. Then Chaste Charismatic Chosen Celestial Consecrated Cavalry Christian School. Then Canaan Chaste Charismatic Chosen Celestial Consecrated Cavalry Christian School.

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