So reasonable. Why not ask for more?

In 2006, Trump said … [a] “terribly written” book had defamed him [by saying he was worth far less than what he claims], and he demanded $5 billion in damages.

… Trump sat for a two-day deposition for the case in 2007, during which he made a series of false statements… A New Jersey appeals court ruled in [the book’s author’s] favor in 2011.

Foundations of Western Universities.

The university foundation – the shady organization of rich boosters who want to do nice things for a particular university without having to be bound by the board of trustees and other pesky official organizations/rules – is often a very naughty thing. Sometimes it’s a slush fund for the president and his or her cronies, as at the University of Louisville, where its main function was loading more and more dollars onto the president’s personal haul. God only knows (channeling the Beach Boys) what many campuses’ sports and administration figures would do without The Foundation.

Iowa State University, the inspiration for Jane Smiley’s novel, Moo, has a typical foundation. It buys stuff the administration is too embarrassed, or legally unable, to buy. Until ISU’s president crash-landed one of the planes the foundation bought, no one seems to have been prompted to ask what Sen. Herman Quirmbach, D-Ames, has asked: “Why does a university need to buy a plane at all?”

In answering that question, UD has always sought the guidance of Purdue University trustee Joanne Brouillette:

Excluding one flight to Naples with several other trustees and administrators, [Purdue University trustee JoAnn] Brouillette’s [twelve private, university-paid] flights [since the beginning of 2008] were to and from Fort Wayne, Ind., only spending 30 minutes in the air. Out of these flights, five of them carried no other passengers.

Big people like go UP and DOWN and UP and DOWN and UP and DOWN!

UD thanks dmf.

The national…



The U of Smell is about to smell to even higher heaven.

Republican National Committee Differentiates the Candidates

“RNC Releases New Paid Web Ad ‘Hillary Clinton’s Liberal Elite Summer Tour’”: “highlighting her string of fundraisers with the liberal elite in wealthy enclaves like Nantucket, Cape Cod, and Beverly Hills, a reminder of how out-of-touch she is and a clear sign of whose priorities she will really be championing if elected president.”

Trump held fundraisers in Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard earlier this month, and he owns a home in Beverly Hills.

Yer Darn Tootin’ …

… I like Vlad Putin!


[Trump] has offered the most pro-Kremlin slate of statements of any U.S. presidential candidate since Henry Wallace’s Progressive Party campaign of fellow travel in 1948. Trump has suggested that NATO is obsolete and should be dismantled or drastically scaled back. He’s indicated he would not necessarily come to the aid of NATO allies in the event of a Russian attack. He spoke about conceding Russian annexation of Crimea, a region of Ukraine that Moscow annexed in 2014, in what the global community almost universally views as a violation of international law.

On a personal level, Trump has expressed his admiration for Putin’s style of leadership, expressed hope that the two men would get along well, and claimed that he knew Putin, only to say later that they had never met.

Meanwhile, … all indications are that the Trump campaign maneuvered to soften language in the Republican platform backing Ukraine in its dispute with Russia. Manafort then denied this, a claim that is disputed by extensive reporting on the process.

… Trump … has publicly wished that Russia would release Hillary Clinton’s emails from her time as secretary of state, a plea for foreign interference in the American state that shocked and appalled foreign-policy hands of every political stripe.

See if you can read through this article without laughing out loud …

… at least once.

“[H]auling [Hank] Greenberg’s notoriously cranky, 91-year-old ass into court is a price above rubies for NY AG Eric Schneiderman who will now (maybe) get the opportunity to prosecute Greenberg and Donald Trump for fraud in the same year.”

Two of America’s most eminent men, one of them the founder of a university and the other a lifetime trustee of NYU, go to court for fraud.

Once the prices are up, who cares where they come down?

To quote Werner von Braun; or, if you’re the University of Texas, once the pharma prices go up, who cares on whose head they crash down? Your endowment benefits hugely from investing in pharma company Valeant as it buys cheap old drugs and then jacks up their prices a zillion times over so that sick people…

Well, note the headline on an article about the situation in Nonprofit Quarterly:

Price-Gouging the Sick to Grow Your Endowment Turns Out to Be a Bad Bet

Yeah, everything was copacetic for awhile – Valeant, always mentioned in the same breath as its comrade in pricing Martin Shkreli, was doing great for UT, price-gouging the sick and making big profits and it was great for everyone! But then Valeant caught a teeny bit of bad publicity for making the hellish lives of sick people much more hellish, and its value dropped, and now the UT endowment returns are looking kinda shitty too because of UT’s failure to anticipate this glitch in an otherwise brilliant corporate strategy.

UD would love to know where UT’s investment advisors are looking next. Where’s the hot new pharma co. whose business model destroys the lives of vulnerable people for a GARGANTUAN payoff? Maybe UT can ask its business students to help them find the next Shkreli. A credit-bearing project of some sort.

Why Bernie’s Doing So Well

[Martin] Shkreli anticipated a blockbuster product just as Turing raised the price, according to a company memo released by the House Committee on Government Oversight and Reform. On August 27, 2015, he wrote in an e-mail that “I think [the drug] will be huge. We raised the price from $1,700 per bottle to $75,000 … So 5,000 paying bottles at the new price is $375,000,000- almost all of it is profit and I think we will get 3 years of that or more.”

Sanders wins Indiana.

‘Executive Fired After Opposing 5,000% Drug Price Hike’

An American Tragedy.

You know what would be really cool?

Harvard University (endowment $36-plus billion, but it’s got far more money than that if you count other assets) PLUS one of these guys:

In 1999 .. the 10 largest collegiate football programs brought in $229 million in revenue. By 2012, the same schools reported revenue of $762 million. “Profit margins had ballooned to hedge-fund levels.” … Overwhelmingly, the cash is reinvested in athletic programs. As a Texas sports official put it, “We eat what we kill.”

What an amazing school that would be… What an icon of the postmodern university… Unimaginably rich, it would hoard/eat its cash, so that little to no money would be put to academic use…

Imagine this school as a massive nubbed therapy ball stuffed with a trillion dollars. Fund managers and sundry money fetishists would be invited to squat on its nubs and bounce around …

“[S]tudent tuition is increasing at a steady clip on average more than the rate increase of operating expenses, all while Yale’s endowment is seeing huge gains.”

Yale University: Eat the Rich.

The New University of West Virginia Fight Song.

Excerpts. In honor of the dean of the WVU School of Public Health.

I brush my teeth with Coca-Cola, wash my face with mountain dew
We live down in chemical valley, licorice water runnin’ through,
Licorice water runnin’ through

… All is money, all is power, one man’s loss is another’s gain
I just do the best I can, put out my bucket, pray for rain
Put out the bucket and pray for rain

… Once we were Almost Heaven, now we’re open for business
That’s the place that I call home, West Virginia

“In a time of economic hardship, when the citizens of the state that we serve are suffering, the Provost’s decision to accept a position on Nike’s corporate board has drawn unwelcome and harmful public attention to her and to the President, both of whom already earn excessive salaries and, by accepting lucrative positions on corporate boards, seem clearly to be cashing in on their public positions.”

Ah, a walk down memory lane. This is from a 2010 AAUP report expressing dismay at Phyllis Wise (then a high-ranking administrator at the University of Washington) following in the footsteps of UW’s then president Mark Emmert (who as current head of the farcical NCAA makes far far FAR bigger bucks than he did on all of his presidential corporate boards) and displaying her I could give a shit greed to the world.

To Wise’s claim that Nike’s board was interested in her special expertise in their line of work, the AAUP responded:

It is difficult to see what special interest the Nike Corporation could possibly have in Phyllis Wise’s research expertise in obstetrics and gynecology.

Er… How to screw your employees?…

UD is therefore SOOOO not surprised that Wise is insisting on leaving her latest place of employment with every penny coming to her.

One day after the board of trustees rejected her first attempt, the former UI chancellor again tendered her resignation Thursday night, saying she would not accept a position as special assistant to the president and that she is consulting with her lawyers about ways to protect her reputation…

‘[T]he University agreed to provide the compensation and benefits to which I was entitled, including $400,000 in deferred compensation that was part of my 2011 employment contract.’

I want it all! You think by changing your mind and ‘terminating’ instead of retiring me you can avoid yet more ridicule (the University of Illinois has generated tons of that over the last few years) about the four hundred thou reward for the way I handled Salaita and other matters?


It’s what Kierkegaard called infinite resignation:

Infinite resignation is the last stage before faith, so anyone who has not made this movement does not have faith, for only in infinite resignation does an individual become conscious of his eternal validity, and only then can one speak of grasping existence by virtue of faith.

As Wise embarks on her spiritual journey, the rest of us can giggle at the spectacle (see this post, about comedy and repetition) of Wise and her university tossing the terminate/resign ball back and forth. At great expense to Illinois taxpayers, of course.


UD thanks Wendy.

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