A corporate board hog, an enemy of free speech, and now…

… for Phyllis Wise’s latest achievement: As the recently appointed chancellor of the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, she has, in four short years, shepherded her school to Number One on the nation’s top party school list.

Background on Wise, whose jocklove also contributed to her school’s triumph, here.

I’m sure they miss her at the University of Washington.

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UD thanks John.

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Update on her winning faculty recruitment strategies.

This nation’s highest paid ethics professor…

… gets it said.

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UD thanks John for the link.

New Student Orientation Reading, Baylor University.

They’re here. They’re armed. Get used to it.

Ride ’em Cowboy!

Life of the mind, North Dakota.

A legislative appropriation intended for academic grants has been used to fund athletic scholarships… Dickinson State University [used] …$16,000 for the Rick Enderud Rodeo Scholarship.

Life of the Mind, United States of America.

[Florida State University president] John Thrasher — a career politician who is now the chief decision-maker at the nation’s most disliked football-playing university — [grabbed] his coach in a very giddy, very public embrace.

Earlier, Thrasher had released a statement blasting The New York Times for a report Friday describing how two starters on the Florida State defense ran from the scene of a late-night car accident in October and were given what seemed to be preferential treatment by Tallahassee police officers.

It was merely the latest in a long string of headlines that has brought endless cynicism about the kind of operation Florida State has been running off the field while beating everybody on it for now 26 straight games.

But here at Sun Life Stadium, moments after No. 2 Florida State finished off yet another comeback to beat Miami 30-26, you could at least envision why people like Thrasher and Fisher may be able to rationalize all the enabling and justifying of behavior other schools at least pretend to care about.

The harder the nation roots for Florida State to fall, the more self-fulfilling life becomes in the Tallahassee bubble. The Seminoles aren’t running from their identity as escape artists; in fact, they’re practically scripting it before it ever happens.

Good ol’ Florida State U…. They just got them a good ol’ boy for prez; they got “Jesus” Jameis Winston for local hero…

… They got so many good things! Got Gonul Colak.

(Well, his name don’t show up on their finance page, so I guess they ain’t got him anymore.)

Almost got a chiropractic school – the same good ol’ boy who now runs the place backed it big time (he was then a trustee) – but outraged actual scientists on the faculty managed to shut down the idea. Bet it gets a second life, now that the good ol’ boy who backed it runs the whole joint.

On top of all that good stuff, they got the wonderfully named Sanford Lovingood (see his sun-kissed, kinda-ashamed mug shot here), FSU booster club comptroller who has been stealing hundreds and hundreds of thousands of dollars from fan donations.

Oh, but don’t call it stealing. Lovingood had in mind to pay every penny back:

He told investigators [he] planned to repay the money by willing property that he owned back to the Boosters.

See now once he died and all he was gonna give FSU his, like, his houses and all..

Andrew Sullivan on Commentary Magazine.

Commentary is a propaganda sheet, directed, as degenerate movements often are, by a beneficiary of nepotism, in order to advance a moribund ideology and the interests of one faction in a foreign country. It’s an almost text-book case of intellectual decline and fall.

As recently as May, he gave remarks…

… at an all-Berlioz concert in his honor in San Antonio, where he had lived for many years.

Jacques Barzun is dead at 104.

Important Announcement from the Chief Academic Officer of Mississippi State University!

Read carefully, because there are many nuances.

Jurgen Habermas on the European Union

Habermas spells out precisely why he sees Europe as a project for civilization that must not be allowed to fail, and why the “global community” is not only feasible, but also necessary to reconcile democracy with capitalism. Otherwise, as he puts it, we run the risk of a kind of permanent state of emergency — otherwise the countries will simply be driven by the markets.

… [Why does Habermas take] the topic of Europe so personally[?]. It has to do with the evil Germany of yesteryear and the good Europe of tomorrow, with the transformation of past to future, with a continent that was once torn apart by guilt — and is now torn apart by debt.

“A stupid man’s idea of what a smart person sounds like.”

Paul Krugman says what UD‘s thought as she’s watched Newt Gingrich over many, many years.

Gingrich has the worst traits of the worst stereotypical professor: Vain, irritable, cynical, superior, verbally fat and polemically thin.

Yet stupid people read his fast-talking smooth-operator thing as smart; they think being a smug and dismissive know-it-all is what it means to be a smart person.

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On the first – and last – day that Mr UD attended one particular graduate course offered by the University of Chicago, the professor cast his eye ’round the seminar table and began the semester with the following statement: “You’re looking at the world’s most distinguished living political philosopher.” That’s a stupid person’s idea of a smart person – farcical self-regard plus a James Deen-hard conviction that you’re right about everything.

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UPDATE: This is what a smart person sounds like.

At a Natural Resources Committee hearing Friday on oil drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Rep. Don Young (R-Alaska) mistakenly addressed the professor as “Dr. Rice“ while calling his testimony ”garbage.”

Brinkley interrupted, saying: “It’s Dr. Brinkley, Rice is a university,“ and ”I know you went to Yuba [Community College in California] and couldn’t graduate — ”

Then it was Young’s turn to interrupt. “I’ll call you anything I want to call you when you sit in that chair,” he told the witness. “You just be quiet.”

Brinkley countered: “You don’t own me. I pay your salary. I work for the private sector and you work for the taxpayer.”

I recognize that Brinkley looks pretty irritable and self-regarding in this exchange. But I’d like to suggest that there are good reasons for his insolence, having had his ideas called garbage by a congressional bully. Young insults not just Brinkley, but the entire discussion, calling it “futile.” He calls Brinkley an elitist when it is Young (“I’ll call you anything I want to call you…”) who’s the elitist throughout the exchange. Brinkley’s what a smart guy sounds like when he’s speaking truth back to power (“You just be quiet.” – Infantilizing power at that.). Brinkley is one of Paul Fussell’s X‘s – people “impelled by insolence, intelligence, irony, and spirit.” Gingrich may share the insolence, but the rest of his list is very different.

Via David, a UD Reader:

This memory of Robert Wilson, a physicist who in 1969 testified, in front of a congressional committee, on behalf of a proposed particle accelerator.

[Senator John Pastore asked] Wilson — a veteran of the Manhattan Project — … “Is there anything connected with the hopes of this accelerator that in any way involves the security of the country?”

… “No sir, I don’t believe so.”

“Nothing at all?” Pastore asked.

“Nothing at all.”

Pastore pressed further: “It has no value in that respect?”

… “It has only to do with the respect with which we regard one another, the dignity of man, our love of culture. It has to do with: Are we good painters, good sculptors, great poets? I mean all the things we really venerate in our country and are patriotic about. It has nothing to do directly with defending our country except to make it worth defending.”

The incident introduces an essay in Scientific American about “the sheer joy of discovery, of pushing the boundaries of human knowledge, as essential a component of the human spirit as the greatest works of art, of music, of literature.”

Life of the Mind, Florida.

[Florida legislator and Brevard County Community College lecturer Mike] Haridopolos got paid $154,000 [by the college] to write a book titled Florida Legislative History and Processes.

[T]he book is light on content, has errors and – are you ready for this – there is exactly one copy.

One copy.

Really. $154,000 for one copy.

No, he didn’t teach during that time. Too busy on the book.

Excerpts from the book here.

David Held, the London School of Economics, and the Gadhafis.

From The Daily Telegraph:

… The Gadhafis … ingratiated themselves into the upper echelons of British society, handily aided by Saif’s charm and the sage-like status apparently conferred by his [London School of Economics] doctorate.

… So successful was his adoption of British ways that he was lauded at the LSE by Professor David Held in a speech. It described his former student as: “Someone who looks to democracy, civil society and deep liberal values for the core of his inspiration.”

Now keen to prove that it is not as amorally venal as many suspect, the LSE has announced it will not take more of the $2.3 million pledged by Saif than the $472,800 it has already spent on its weighty purposes.

… [Perhaps] London’s …academic circles might be more fastidious … about consorting with such a grotesque as this ghastly murderous man.

Score One for…

no morality without religion.

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