The Ballad of James Ramsey is being written as we speak, and since the whole point of University Diaries is to pay attention to strange and unsettling things that happen in our country’s university system, we will follow his saga closely here.

A forensic audit demanded by [University of Louisville] donors recently confirmed that under Ramsey’s leadership, the foundation [which Ramsey, quite the monopolist, ran, along with running the university] authorized excessive spending, including on executive compensation, and realized unrecorded endowment losses to the tune of $120 million.

Yes, yes, Lawrence Summers, when Harvard prez, lost one billion from the endowment, so what’s a paltry $120 m? I mean, your university can lose twelve million in a matter of minutes if you have ninnies minding the till, so big deal. Money in, money out. At UL specifically, the job of donors is to give money; the job of trustees is to take it; the job of students is to shut the fuck up.


Turns out, though, that even in America’s arguably most corrupt state, a few people find abundant high-level university theft annoying, and though Ramsey probably won’t live long enough to go to jail … wait lemme check his age… guy’s pushing seventy… that’s not that old these days!… he has, er, tons of money with which to countersue, to appeal, to fall mysteriously ill and delay his trial, to become a shimmy shimmy koko bop fundamentalist preacher and get too famous to finger blahblahblah… he might be able to swing it so he can spend the rest of his days weeping to reporters about how he’s being treated exactly the way they treated Jesus …

Poor (impoverished; pathetic) UL is right now floating on this very same stream of consciousness, asking themselves if they want to take a big financial and reputational hit (and when your most recent dorm renovation involved retrofitting the building so it’s no longer a whorehouse for your athletes, you got you some reputational issues) and go after Ramsey and his cronies… Already “donations to the university have been falling rapidly, down 25 percent from 2016–17,” and the question is whether allowing the Full-Ramsey shitstorm to hit the public in the interest of eventually clearing the air (‘cepn nobody who knows Kentucky thinks anything will ever clear its air) will appease donors or simply remind them what an icky place the school, grosso modo, is.

Trackback URL for this post:

4 Responses to “‘When first I came to Louisville / Some treasure there to find…’”

  1. Bernard Carroll Says:

    Growing up in Australia ninnies was a common term. Never encountered it here in US until today. What a useful, versatile put-down!

  2. Margaret Soltan Says:

    Barney: I like the way “ninny” has an infantile aspect to it…

  3. Bernard Carroll Says:

    ‘Tis e’er since the days of old Pliny,
    In order to guard safe your guinea,
    Consider all offers
    For growing your coffers,
    But never invest through a ninny.

  4. Margaret Soltan Says:

    Excellent. I must try my hand at a ninny limerick…

Comment on this Entry

Latest UD posts at IHE