Get used to it, kiddies!

One downside of making lots of money as a doc is all those strictly – really! strictly! – non-profit organizations demanding you take more and more absolutely positively necessary certification exams which strangely enough cost you a fortune and if you don’t pay up we’ll put a thingie on your record that says you aren’t certified which is like ooh scary gonna hurt your career…

All Strictly Non-Profit, let us reiterate! Ignore the “multimillion dollar apartments which offer owners chauffeur driven late model BMWs” the American Board of Internal Medicine has gifted to itself out of your fees!

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

Yes, the ever-chiseling ABIM is an organization always able to come up with another crisis in patient care that cries out for another expensive set of certifying exams.

The ABIM has gotten so disgusting, however, that this dude has formed a breakaway certifying organization that charges hugely less and is drawing so many grossed-out docs away from the BMW organization that the BMW organization is now going Uh haha just kidding we’re going to… uh… pull back on some of these tests and … uh… maybe look at what we’re charging… and I mean hold on cuz we’re on it we promise…

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

Sadly, the doc-chiseling starts well before ABIM has a chance to start threatening you with anemic certification. There’s the notorious Step 2 Clinical Skills exam, about which more and more med students are making a fuss.

Hundreds of medical students at the University of Maryland, Georgetown University, Johns Hopkins University and George Washington University are joining a nationwide campaign to eliminate a standardized licensing test they say is redundant and a financial burden.

Students say that the test – the Step 2 Clinical Skills exam, which measures bedside manner and real-world problem-solving while students interact with people acting as patients – should be replaced with an alternative exam that the nation’s medical schools could administer free.

The Step 2 exam is expensive: There is a $1,275 registration fee, and because the test is offered in just five cities, students often have to bear the cost of travel and lodging.

… “There have to be better and more efficient ways to test students,” said James S. Gessner, president of the Massachusetts Medical Society. “There is absolutely no reason to bring students to five testing centers at a huge cost when the material can be administered on-site at schools.”

Yeah, but if they did that, the organization behind the test would be out $36 million a year.

Perfect Synergy at the University of Chicago: Professorships in Medicine Named for a Family of Alleged Medicare Crooks.

Nir Uriel has been named the Rabbi Esformes Professor in Medicine, the University of Chicago announced last week.

The announcement coincided with another one, from the Department of Justice, about Esformes’ son, who has been arrested for the largest health care fraud case in American history.

The father gets double billing with the son in many press accounts, since Rabbi Esformes established the family nursing home business (rumored to be filthy for every one of the years Esformes has denominated the University of Chicago’s most distinguished medical school faculty) which his son merely expanded to its current scope.

I can understand the respect and esteem of one of America’s most corrupt political bodies.

But is UD‘s old school so hard up that it needs to slap these names on its faculty?

The New Yorker Goes Too Far.

By all means share with me everything horrible that you know about Donald Trump. But don’t overdo it.

After many years during which he could have done a Mea Culpa, the guy who ghostwrote The Art of the Deal suddenly, on the very verge of the Republican convention, announces he’s all torn up about it.

He has launched his Remorse Tour with a New Yorker interview.

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

The magazine refers to Tony Schwartz, in one of the article’s headlines, as Trump’s Boswell. The cutesy ironic reference means to flatter the magazine’s readers’ sense of themselves as highly educated and all, but really what’s the point? Does anyone think Trump was ever a wise kind literary genius for whom someone like Schwartz would act as a Boswell? Did Schwartz think that?

He must have thought something like that, since he describes himself (before remorse set in) as shocked and disappointed by Trump’s lack of a discernible inner life.

Really? And why did this guy, who describes himself as at one point in the distant past a legitimate writer, pen a book full of Trump-aggrandizing lies?

He knew that he would be making a Faustian bargain. A lifelong liberal, he was hardly an admirer of Trump’s ruthless and single-minded pursuit of profit. “It was one of a number of times in my life when I was divided between the Devil and the higher side,” he told me. He had grown up in a bourgeois, intellectual family in Manhattan, and had attended élite private schools, but he was not as wealthy as some of his classmates — and, unlike many of them, he had no trust fund. “I grew up privileged,” he said. “But my parents made it clear: ‘You’re on your own.’ ” Around the time Trump made his offer, Schwartz’s wife, Deborah Pines, became pregnant with their second daughter, and he worried that the family wouldn’t fit into their Manhattan apartment…

There are sob stories, and there are New Yorker sob stories. (And Atlantic sob stories.) How could he resist doing one of the scummiest things a writer could do? He was desperate. Although his parents paid for elite private schools, he was somehow “on your own.” While his classmates at these schools came from, let’s say, billionaire houses (like Trump’s), he came, let’s say, merely from millions.

Plus no trust fund!

Yes, he was able to live in Manhattan… but would his girls have to share a bedroom?

Given the success of their first outing, Trump approached Schwartz about a second writing project.

Feeling deeply alienated, [Schwartz said no, and] instead wrote a book called “What Really Matters,” about the search for meaning in life. After working with Trump, Schwartz writes, he felt a “gnawing emptiness” and became a “seeker,” longing to “be connected to something timeless and essential, more real.”

There’s so much bullshit here that at this point it’s tipping over into something good about Trump – an encounter with him is guaranteed to launch you on your journey of Awakening.

Tony Schwartz cashed in on Trump once; he’s cashing in again, enabled by a media culture that’ll use anything.

La Nausée

[M]any of the usual suspects just cannot bring themselves to join this year’s [Republican National Convention] — either out of principle, self-preservation, or an overwhelming sense of nausea.

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

‘Saturday the children were playing ducks and drakes and, like them, I wanted to throw a stone into the sea. Just at that moment I stopped, dropped the stone and left. Probably I looked somewhat foolish or absent-minded, because the children laughed behind my back. So much for external things. What has happened inside of me has not left any clear traces. I saw something which disgusted me, but I no longer know whether it was the sea or stone…

… Things are bad! Things are very bad: I have it, the filth, the Nausea…

… I wanted to vomit. And since that time, the Nausea has not left me, it holds me…

… [W]e have so much difficulty imagining nothingness. Now I knew: things are entirely what they appear to be — and behind them . . . there is nothing…

… I glance around the room and a violent disgust floods me. What am I doing here? … Why are these people here? …

… The Nausea has not left me and I don’t believe it will leave me so soon; but I no longer have to bear it, it is no longer an illness or a passing fit: it is I…

… And then all of a sudden, there it was, clear as day: existence had suddenly unveiled itself. It had lost the harmless look of an abstract category: it was the very paste of things, this root was kneaded into existence. Or rather the root, the park gates, the bench, the sparse grass, all that had vanished: the diversity of things, their individuality, were only an appearance, a veneer. This veneer had melted, leaving soft, monstrous masses, all in disorder — naked, in a frightful, obscene nakedness…

… . We were a heap of living creatures, irritated, embarrassed at ourselves, we hadn’t the slightest reason to be there, none of us, each one, confused, vaguely alarmed, felt in the way in relation to the others…

… Every existing thing is born without reason, prolongs itself out of weakness and dies by chance. I leaned back and closed my eyes. But the images, forewarned, immediately leaped up and filled my closed eyes with existences: existence is a fullness which man can never abandon…

… I was nowhere, I was floating. I was not surprised, I knew it was the World, the naked World suddenly revealing itself, and I choked with rage at this gross, absurd being. You couldn’t even wonder where all that sprang from, or how it was that a world came into existence, rather than nothingness. It didn’t make sense, the World was everywhere, in front, behind. There had been nothing before it. Nothing. There had never been a moment in which it could not have existed. That was what worried me: of course there was no reason for this flowing larva to exist. But it was impossible for it … not to exist. It was unthinkable: to imagine nothingness you had to be there already, in the midst of the World, eyes wide open and alive; nothingness was only an idea in my head, an existing idea floating in this immensity: this nothingness had not come before existence, it was an existence like any other and appeared after many others. I shouted “filth! what rotten filth!”‘

How to Get a Dorm Room Upgrade at Simon Fraser University

Once the university became aware of [multiple] reported [sexual] assaults [alleged against a student], SFU conducted a safety assessment with the RCMP and “undertook measures to ensure the safety of the campus community,” spokesman Kurt Heinrich said. He refused to say what those measures were.

But whatever was done, the second complainant’s mother says it wasn’t enough.

The alleged assailant was in one of her daughter’s classes, the mother said in a telephone interview. Her daughter ran into him in the residence. She saw him at the gym and in the dining room.

If none of her dorm friends was home, she would lock herself in her room and not go to the dining room for meals.

In mid-February, the mother wrote to SFU President Andrew Petter after her daughter was told that there were at least two women who had gone to police about the male student. She also later wrote to Provost Jon Driver and spoke to him on several occasions.

A few weeks later, the young woman — who loved her classes — quit university and moved home.

Eventually, the alleged assailant was moved to another residence after continued complaints from her friends. No warnings were given to female students there about the new resident.

And, far from being punishment, someone familiar with the case described it “a massive room upgrade.”

How Republican Death Panels Look

“Let his posterity be cut off, and in the generation following let their name be blotted out.”

So, in case you missed it, a sitting U.S. senator just asked an audience to pray a death curse to the president.

Yeah. Trump fits right in.

— Jamelle Bouie

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Not that the Lord hasn’t been answering prayers

Sleazy University of Louisville, Famed for Overpaid Cronies and Coaches…

… now features the comical board of trustee meetings that all schools going down the tube feature. The cronies want yet another big tuition increase so that they and the coaches can continue to live in the style to which they have become accustomed; a powerful faction of disgusted trustees wants them to stop doing this.

During the meeting, [one trustee] questioned how the university spends money, calling [the school president] and his administrative team “masters of financial obfuscation.”

The sharpest debate of the meeting was over a transaction [the president] approved last year in which the university loaned $38 million of its cash on hand to the University of Louisville Real Estate Foundation, a creation of the U of L Foundation, which [the president] also runs.

[Two trustees] questioned why the loan was not approved by the trustees and whether the money could be used to fund more pressing university priorities or to curtail tuition increases.

Jason Tomlinson, the foundation’s chief financial officer, told the board that the transaction is not a loan but a “receivable.” But U of L’s independent auditors called it a loan in the university’s annual financial statements…

[One of the trustees] blew up at Tomlinson, asking how he could tell the board the deal is not a loan when the document governing the transaction has a file name of “University Loan to FDN.docx.”

The U of Smell has gotten so comprehensively smelly (put Louisville in my search engine) that a strong faction of trustees now wants the school’s ridiculous president to leave. The president refuses to leave.

The stage is set; all the rest of us have to do is sit back and enjoy the show.

Saudi Arabia: Small for its Gestational…

Age.

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UD thanks Barney.

Sometimes it’s the smallest things that are the most contemptible.

A man calling himself a reverend (Christopher Hitchens noted that in this country once you call yourself a reverend you can get away with almost anything) has withdrawn his lawsuit against Whole Foods.

What he did was order a cake that said LOVE WINS and then take it home and add the word FAG to the cake.

After which, weeping for the cameras because of the trauma he sustained, he sued Whole Foods for having written FAG.

This man, himself the object of a lawsuit because he has failed to pay his student loans, is emerging as an icon of contemptible behavior in a litigious culture. UD is glad to see him assume this role.

UD hopes Whole Foods refuses to drop its defamation suit against him. UD also hopes the law firm that took this case and played along for the cameras with its poor traumatized client gets hit for legal malpractice. Austin Kaplan, the lead attorney, graduated with various honors from American University, here in DC. AU should consider revoking some of those honors.

And the city of Austin might want to revisit Kaplan’s recent Austinite of the Year award.

Kaplan was close to tears as he wrapped up his acceptance speech, displaying to those in attendance how passionate and dedicated he is to his line of work.

There are certainly a lot of man tears around this story. But franchement, for the city, it looks embarrassing.

You don’t have to know the language!

You don’t have to know the language

With a sub in the class

And the students entrapped

In a Texas public school

So the words in the text mean nothing

And he can’t ask a soul what to do

No, you don’t have to know the language

In a Texas public school

And Three makes a Trinity.

First, Toronto’s North by Northeast Festival; then, UD‘s George Washington University; and now, exceedingly well-heeled Trinity College may be close to deciding that, yes, rich kids like to go slumming, but there are limits.

Ditties celebrating the rape and murder of women just don’t sit well with some folks. Who knows why. But Trinity might be the third institution to disinvite this person.

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

For every Action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.

Sign the petition. Help the President of the University of Arizona to step down.

The people at UA ask why
Their president whores for DeVry.
“Oh, go lay a fart,”
Says President Hart,
“Fuck off, adios, and bye-bye.”

Sign the petition.

“All bigots and frauds are brothers under the skin.”

Christopher Hitchens, who wrote that sentence in an essay about Jerry Falwell, would have been fascinated by the brotherhood on view at Donald Trump’s latest rally, where Trump’s warm-up bigot, a loud-mouth diploma mill graduate (not Trump University; another diploma mill), shrieked that Bernie Sanders doesn’t believe in God and must be made to come to Jesus.

I wish Hitchens were here to describe this man.

University of Arizona Presidential Hymnal

As pants Ann Hart for extra green
Beyond her package here
So longs her soul for U DeVry
And its free bucks so dear.

For Thee, DeVry, her living God,
Her thirsty soul doth pine;
Oh when shall she behold her check
Thou Majesty Divine?

Why restless, why cast down, Ms Hart?
O let your critics rant;
For thou shalt sing the praise of Them
The bills for which you pant.

Capella, Phoenix, and DeVry
The Gods whom you adore,
Be glory as it was, is now,
And shall be evermore.

Two high-level administrators, one greedy and one cynical, get caught…

… and suffer no consequences. Their universities, now… certainly their universities suffer consequences… but both of these people hold on to their jobs and indeed continue to do what they do.

In the case of the cynic – provost at Southern Methodist University – what he does is overrule faculty committees trying to keep unqualified basketball players from being admitted.

In the case of the pig – chancellor at UC Davis – what she does is accumulate money-for-nothing board memberships – one of them a conflict of interest, and another DeVry! – until some local politician notices and she runs away squealing Sorry Sorry Sorry!

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UD thanks dmf and Wendy.

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