Friday, June 30, 2017

Peer-Reviewed Research: Penises Cause Warming

By Professor Doom

     Advanced mathematics is not for the uninitiated. Even with years of training, it’s easy enough to go to a research seminar and have at best merely a basic idea of what the latest findings are about. Experts in the field usually understand completely of course, but even if what’s being said seems incomprehensible to the layman there’s no way you can “fake it” well enough to fool an expert. In short: while both an expert mathematician and a lunatic can spew what looks like mathematical gibberish, only the former can do it in a way that’s still comprehensible to mathematicians. You just can’t fake it well enough to fool an expert.

      I’ve looked at research in other fields, with the belief that I’d only understand only the basics. Thus, I was surprised to find “advanced topics” in Education and Administration are incredibly basic and accessible to anyone, even if other fields (hi Physics!) definitely made me feel quite limited in my understanding of advanced topics.

     I know full well if I tried to imitate writing and research in advanced physics, an expert would casually shred my gibberish. And I’ve demonstrate that with no effort I can emulate “advanced” Education and Administration writing.

      Gender studies and gender related studies are big on campus anymore. Casual inspection on my part led me to believe it was meaningless at best, and ideological indoctrination at worst. I’m hardly the only scholar to make such conjectures, but scholars know that “conjecture” is just a fancy way to say “guess.” A couple of scholars decided to prove this stuff is just plain ol’ crap:

-- Sokal1 refers to a previous hoax played on these guys, years ago.

     The two “researchers” made a point of generating a 3,000 word paper packed with jargon and devoid of any meaning. A sample paragraph will give the gist of it:
Destructive, unsustainable hegemonically male approaches to pressing environmental policy and action are the predictable results of a raping of nature by a male-dominated mindset. This mindset is best captured by recognizing the role of [sic] the conceptual penis holds over masculine psychology. When it is applied to our natural environment, especially virgin environments that can be cheaply despoiled for their material resources and left dilapidated and diminished when our patriarchal approaches to economic gain have stolen their inherent worth, the extrapolation of the rape culture inherent in the conceptual penis becomes clear….

     The whole paper of fake research is much like the above, with the key conclusion:
The conceptual penis presents significant problems for gender identity and reproductive identity within social and family dynamics, is exclusionary to disenfranchised communities based upon gender or reproductive identity, is an enduring source of abuse for women and other gender-marginalized groups and individuals, is the universal performative source of rape, and is the conceptual driver behind much of climate change.

      The entire above paragraph is actually just one sentence, but the reader could be forgiven for not reading it through. Allow me to edit it down to at least a minimal level of comprehensibility (keeping in mind the authors were deliberately trying not to be understood):
The conceptual penis…is the conceptual driver behind much of climate change.

      The paper is pure gibberish, little different than simply stringing along a bunch of mathematical symbols and believing it to mean something. The researchers even used a well-known (in the right circles) piece of software to generate the “research.” Yes, this field is so ridiculous (despite the regularly growing departments on campus) that somebody actually wrote a research paper generator for it:
Some references cite the Postmodern Generator, a website coded in the 1990s by Andrew Bulhak featuring an algorithm…that returns a different fake postmodern “paper” every time the page is reloaded. We cited and quoted from the Postmodern Generator liberally;   

      Keep that in mind: not only did they use a gibberish generator for the paper, they used it as a reference, not that anyone noticed—the experts in this field do not even know when they are being mocked! Other references in the paper were likewise questionable (to be generous):

Not only is the text ridiculous, so are the references. Most of our references are quotations from papers and figures in the field that barely make sense in the context of the text. Others were obtained by searching keywords and grabbing papers that sounded plausibly connected to words we cited. We read exactly zero of the sources we cited, by intention, as part of the hoax.

     Of course, the researchers wrote it all under pseudonyms. They then sent it out to peer reviewed journals for publication. I really want to emphasize this: peer review is considered the gold standard of publication, even though time and again it’s been revealed as flawed at best and highly corrupt at worst. Mostly the corruption is by coordinating with the reviewers but in this case the researchers decided to have legitimate experts in the field legitimately review the paper. Why did they even hope that their hoax would possibly work?

That is, we assumed we could publish outright nonsense provided it looked the part and portrayed a moralizing attitude that comported with the editors’ moral convictions. Like any impostor, ours had to dress the part, though we made our disguise as ridiculous and caricatured as possible...

     Identity politics and political correctness is destroying our campuses (and some would say, the country). The researchers are quite justified in wondering if these things are also destroying what we now inaccurately call “science.”

     So, they wrote a gibberish paper with bogus references. That’s the easy part. Next, they sent their paper to journals, and did receive rejections—none of the rejections noted that the paper was pure hokum. But one journal suggested another which might be amenable:

We feel that your manuscript would be well-suited to our Cogent Series, a multidisciplinary, open journal platform for the rapid dissemination of peer-reviewed research across all disciplines.

     Cogent sent it to reviewers:

We took them up on the transfer, and Cogent Social Sciences eventually accepted “The Conceptual Penis as a Social Construct.” The reviewers were amazingly encouraging, giving us very high marks in nearly every category. For example, one reviewer graded our thesis statement “sound” and praised it thusly, “It capturs [sic] the issue of hypermasculinity through a multi-dimensional and nonlinear process” (which we take to mean that it wanders aimlessly through many layers of jargon and nonsense). The other reviewer marked the thesis, along with the entire paper, “outstanding” in every applicable category.

      So, a paper that is unarguably complete gibberish can pass the peer review process in this field. Granted the reviewers did have a few issues even with a paper they loved:

They didn’t accept the paper outright, however. Cogent Social Sciences’ Reviewer #2 offered us a few relatively easy fixes to make our paper “better.” We effortlessly completed them in about two hours, putting in a little more nonsense about “manspreading” (which we alleged to be a cause of climate change) and “dick-measuring contests.”

     Now, the gentle reader might well believe that the journal is just a sham. Not true! Journals have their own accreditation system:

First, Cogent Social Sciences operates with the legitimizing imprimatur of Taylor and Francis, with which it is clearly closely partnered. Second, it’s held out as a high-quality open-access journal by the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ), which is intended to be a reliable list of such journals. In fact, it carries several more affiliations with similar credentialing organizations...

      Much as higher education has serious, grave problems with a bogus accreditation system, so too do journals, apparently. The researchers’ conclusion regarding the field of gender studies is valid:

”…there are significant reasons to believe that much of the problem lies within the very concept of any journal being a “rigorous academic journal in gender studies.”

     I have two conclusions based on this wildly successful hoax:

1)              I often have global warming believers tell me of the hundreds of peer reviewed studies supporting the notion that Earth will boil over any minute now because of humanity’s technology. I have my doubts, and knowing that a complete hoax article supporting such ideas can easily be peer reviewed and published only increases my doubts further. This paper comes as close as possible to literally saying man is responsible for global warming…and is rubbish.

2)              When I was at a community college, I often encountered faculty and administrators who, after even a brief conversation, I simply could not fathom how they made it through a graduate level program. I gave them the benefit of the doubt, but after longer conversations, the question kept reverberating in my mind: how? They got their degrees and positions through writing papers much like this hoax paper, and it’s clear we have a whole industry of hoax “science” publishing, doing much to explain the surplus of advanced degrees in these strange fields.

     The two authors set out to create a hoax paper, and succeeded brilliantly. Yes, it was done before nearly 20 years ago by Sokal, but that only serves to demonstrate nothing has changed. At this point, as I’ve told many friends, when it comes to “the latest scientific research,” you may as well flip a coin when it comes to deciding whether it’s true or not.

 1)     In 1996, Alan Sokal, a Professor of Physics at NYU, published the bogus paper, “Transgressing the Boundaries: Towards a Transformative Hermeneutics of Quantum Gravity,” in the preeminent cultural studies journal Social Text which is in turn published by Duke University Press. The publication of this nonsense paper, in a prestigious journal with a strong postmodernist orientation, delivered a devastating blow to postmodernism’s intellectual legitimacy.

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Ultra Spiritual Parody: Higher Education

By Professor Doom

     Ah, it’s summer time, the days when the perpetual deadlines during the semester don’t exist. It also means the insanity slows down a bit, so I have time for less serious things.

     Ultra Spiritual Life is a series of parody videos by a YouTube user with account name AwakenWithJP. The videos vary from beyond hysterical to droll, and cover a wide range of topics, from the anti-gluten craze and vegetarianism (recommended!) to atheism and flat Earth theory. And, of course, there is a video on higher education.

      All good humor has at least a grain of truth to it, and the video is funny because he accurately describes much of the invalid thinking regarding higher ed. Trouble is, most people are unfamiliar with the truths he addresses, so allow me to highlight a few.

“The most intelligent way to make money is to find a way to get $100,000 in debt before you even begin to make money…so I decided to go to college.”

      The video begins with this line (apologies if the quote is a little off) and highlights the core flaw in the thinking of most kids going into higher education. Most kids go to college because they think that’s the way to get a high paying job. Bottom line, unless your last name is “Clinton” you’re unlikely to score Chelsea Clinton’s $600,000 a year job no matter how great your GPA. The days where a college degree gave you a reasonable chance of getting a solidly paying job right out of college are over, unless you’re well connected. Granted, college is a good place to make such connections, but only the topmost tier of colleges work that way.

     There’s basically nobody telling our high school kids that the way to make money is to learn a trade or useful skill. Since the jobs existed, plumbers and electricians have made far more money than waiters and parking lot attendants. Yet, there are no collegiate degree programs for plumbers and electricians, even as we have millions of college graduates working as waiters and parking lot attendants. That flight attendant who just poured you a soda? There’s a 30% chance she got a college degree for that job, spending perhaps 6 years of her life learning how to operate a pull tab.

     I’m not criticizing the pursuit of money, but higher education really isn’t the path to riches. So, yes, the line is funny…although I suspect the over 20,000,000 people trapped in student debt slavery with no way to pay it off might not agree.

“If you don’t get a degree then you’re declaring that you want to be homeless, unhappy, and a failure for the rest of your life.”

      Another funny line here, but much like I think it’s fair to ask why, exactly, NBC paid Chelsea Clinton $600,000 a year when NBC’s viewers and revenues (justifiably) dropped straight down, I think it’s also fair to ask…why is the above line a truth?

     No, it’s not true that people who leave college are going to be failures (hi Bill Gates!), but the truth is our kids are trained from birth that college is a MUST, that the completely nebulous things learned there are the only real option for the non-failures.

      We really need to stop training our children like this. We need to explain that a human being should be interested in contributing to society, that plumbers (and other “non college” jobs held in utterly undeserved disdain) are actually quite precious to society, and that it is honorable to do such work for the benefit of society.

      And, of course, that it’s far more profitable than going to college, for most.

      Much of the video quotes lines similar to the above, because it is core to what happened: our kids are destroying themselves in higher education because going to college is the only option they were ever presented.

“Having a degree sets you apart from everyone else. And, everyone has a degree now, so you need one…If you don’t see the brilliance of how this helps you, then you’re not very intelligent and probably didn’t go to college.”

     The above is a paraphrase…but the humor is clear. It’s quite true that there’s a weird belief that college degree holders are special, even though the large proportion of the population has a degree of some sort. Our thinking about what higher education is about is so muddled and filled with contradictions that it doesn’t take much effort to simply laugh at how stupid it all is.

“What excites me about the $100,000 I pay for my degree, is all the interest I pay on that loan…”

      There’s a subtle point here that is often missed. Tuition is soaring, but it’s far worse than what people think. Most people don’t just pay the soaring tuition, see, they also pay the interest on the loans for that tuition. It’s a vicious cycle of profit—the student loan money pouring into higher education drives tuition higher, and the higher tuition creates a need for more loan money.

      The banks who are winning here are laughing all the way to the, er, bank…and they laugh harder as the price rises.

“Because there isn’t a way to get free information about anything anytime you wanted, I think universities are completely justified in charging their customers the prices that they do.”

--the video includes a shot of Google while saying the above…

     It may be hard for people under the age of 25 to believe, but there really was a time when a university was the best way to find someone to show you exactly how to do something outside of the mundane. It was also the best way to find an article or manuscript on even a very obscure or old topic.

     But those days are over. The skit references Google, but Google just leads to information, not how to use it best. There are sufficient YouTube videos for an ignorant person to learn all there is to building a house from the ground up—not that such directly useful skills are even available on a university campus. Even when it comes to academic subjects, there are videos on fairly obscure topics, and tutorials on how to apply even the most esoteric theorems in mathematics.

       Universities are still of value…but it’s a real puzzle why, when most of what they offer is available for free, they can get away with charging so much. Well, it should be a puzzle, but the combination of the student loan scam and that abusive childhood training about the necessity of college explain much.

“Because at one point in time, a horse and buggy was the most effective form of transportation. Then came cars, then came airplanes. But even today, the horse and buggy is the most effective form of transportation…”

     While the joke here is once again the cognitive disconnect regarding the validity of university education, it’s a touch overdone in this case. Horse and buggies have their place, and while I don’t believe universities are quite as outdated, it’s clear we really need to re-evaluate the purpose and price of higher education.

“What kind of job do I have now that I’m out of college? I’m unemployed…”

     The government has tinkered with the definition of “unemployment” so much that it’s really tough to figure out how bad it is in terms a normal person could appreciate. However, about half of college graduates are either unemployed (whatever that means) or underemployed (i.e., in a job where their degree is completely irrelevant). That’s brutal when you consider how much time and money was spent to get that degree.

      I’m grateful for the video, it is good for laughs. However, these jokes would not apply except for the student loan scam, and without the student loan scam we would not have had this video at all.

      Bottom line, I’m not that grateful for the laughter. Get rid of the student loan scam.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

“White Left” as Chinese Insult

By Professor Doom

     Intelligence is a tough thing to measure. We have all sorts of tests, and all of them are subject to various criticisms, many valid. Despite this, it’s clear the tests are at least a little reliable, because one ethnic group consistently comes out on top: Asians (statistically, which means very little when addressing a specific individual).

      It’s no secret that the status of the Social Justice Warrior has dropped a bit in the last six months. Despite their deep self-righteousness and assertions of well-meaning, they’re often held in disdain. This disdain is returned, of course,  and we’re told ad nauseam how people that don’t like SJWs are rednecks, hicks, fascists, Nazis, or, of course, deplorable.

     The Chinese, of course, can hardly be called rednecks or Nazis, and they even adopted communism, the favored ideology of the SJW. And, they’re smart. So what do they think of the beliefs of the SJW?

     They have a word for the SJW, bai zuo (literally, “white left”). To be sure, they’re talking about the SJWs with this expression:

baizuo is used generally to describe those who “only care about topics such as immigration, minorities, LGBT and the environment” and “have no sense of real problems in the real world”; they are hypocritical humanitarians who advocate for peace and equality only to “satisfy their own feeling of moral superiority”; they are “obsessed with political correctness” to the extent that they “tolerate backwards Islamic values for the sake of multiculturalism”; they believe in the welfare state that “benefits only the idle and the free riders”; they are the “ignorant and arrogant westerners” who “pity the rest of the world and think they are saviours”.

     While there’s no assertion of insanity in the above, it’s a fairly close description to what a deplorable would call a SJW. What’s interesting here, is this loathing comes from Chinese who have no actual personal experience with SJWs. Yet, they still can formulate a strong opinion.

     For quite some time, the US higher education system has had, especially at the graduate level, a high number of Chinese students. While not true today, the US higher education system used to be the best in the world, and we still have that momentum which causes wealthy Chinese to send their kids here to study. For a while, we worried about “the Chinese problem,” wherein China sends so many students here that it overwhelms our system. Luckily (?), our leaders in higher ed have corrupted and debased higher education to the point that there’s little risk of that anymore.

      Anyway, the Chinese higher education system is now getting the good reputation, and they’ve opened their borders enough to accept foreign students onto their campuses. This is a big deal—as a visitor to China, I assure you a  non-Chinese person really, really, stands out in a way that someone born and raised in America can’t readily appreciate. In any event, Chinese universities that quite literally have never had a non-Chinese student on campus now are getting “foreigners” in numbers. This provides a unique opportunity to see the ideas of social justice in action.

       A white professor at one of these “newly integrated” universities in China is in a unique position to observe how this is working out:

I’m particularly well positioned because my university has an especially large number of students from Pakistan and sub-Saharan Africa. As one of the few white people in my province, I am able to witness interactions between these diverse racial groups who have rarely, if ever, come into contact before they went to college. Some of my students have told me I’m the first white person they’ve ever seen, and almost all say the African students are their first blacks.

           It’s not so rare for have white professors in Chinese universities. Due to the massive glut of Ph.D.s in America, we have lots of scholars looking for work, and there’s great demand for English teachers in China, whatever their doctorate may be in (I myself have even considered it).

     He may be an English teacher, but he’s a scholar, and thus knows to have a nuanced view of things:

I have around 200 students every semester, and about 90 percent are girls. This has something to do with the way the system approves students for certain areas of study, and a lot more girls than boys end up in my English classes. In a class of 30, it’s not uncommon to have no male students. As a result, I am far more familiar with the girls’ perspectives than with the boys’.  The average age of these girls is 19-21, so they are fresh enough not to have fixed views about race, but old enough to want to explore the question.

     So, the professor breaks views down by gender, and has some fascinating insights (although I’m so jealous that his classes only contain 30 students…). So what do his female students say?

When I ask my students what they think of black people, they express mixed results depending on sex. The girls often react with disgust, revulsion, or pity…
The girls’ disgust is often combined with fear, and they associate blacks with crime…

     Part of why the SJW is hated in the US is because of their blatant lies, lies in obvious contradiction with truths most people can see with their own eyes, in addition to their willingness to use violence to silence any who dare speak truth.

     The professor’s university also takes students from Pakistan, a largely Muslim country. How’s that working out?

The Pakistani boys have mixed results. Some of them are successful, but if they are too traditional in their Islamic behavior, the Chinese girls reject them.

     Obviously, dating is a big deal for Chinese females. With different priorities, the Chinese males have a different view of African students:

The opinions of Chinese boys about black people are almost exactly the opposite of the girls. To understand this difference you must understand how important basketball has become in China within the last few years.

     Chinese universities don’t have the corruption and foolishness of official sportsball teams, but they do have courts and such for the students. I do hope they don’t make the mistake of going the route of having school teams. They probably won’t, though if they do, I suspect it’ll be little different than the U.S., with sportsball players completely isolated from the “normal” students. In this case, it’ll be even more clear that the sportsball players are not even remotely related to the actual students on campus.

      Dating is still a factor to the boys, of course, and their views are as insular as anyone familiar with Chinese culture would expect:

However, Chinese boys are not attracted to black women and would never think of marrying one. I was once in a group discussion in which it was jokingly suggested China should invade Africa to acquire women to fill the sex gap plaguing China (thirty million Chinese boys have no girl to marry). One of the Chinese men in the group looked perplexed, and said: “But there are no women in Africa for us to marry; there are only dark-skinned people there.”

--a thinking person who does not wish to be highly alarmed should under no circumstances consider how those 30 million males will eventually get wives…

     What’s most interesting about these views is the students are not getting this message through the official Chinese government schooling. One might suspect as much, as these students do get some of their views from government school (much like in the U.S.):

Despite their obviously low opinion of blacks, when I ask my students whether blacks are as intelligent as whites and Asians, they almost universally reply, “Yes.” This is because of their [Chinese] schooling…

     Now, obviously, when a child learns something in school from a government official, it’s generally taken as fact (there’s a reason government wants control of your children, after all). But, at some point, a child grows and is exposed to the real world and, well, reality sets in:

I often get interesting reactions when I explain the actual IQ scores for each race. My students’ first reaction is laughingly to celebrate the Asian results: “Ha! We’re smarter than white people!” After we joke about this, I ask them what they think about blacks being so far below whites and Asians. Almost without exception, they cite the arguments made by the American Left: “It’s because of white racism,” “It’s because of European colonialism,” “It’s because they have bad nutrition,” or “It’s because they don’t have proper education.”

     Hey, there are some issues with racism on intelligence tests, and absolutely “intelligence” is a vague concept even on a good day…but it’s funny to hear the Chinese students recite the same things our kids recite. Funny, but no accident.
      But, again, propaganda is one thing, reality is another:

My race-realist perspective is almost always vindicated when my students travel to America with foreign work programs. One of my students worked in Ohio over the summer. When he returned, I met him in a tea shop and asked him what he thought of America. The first thing out of his mouth was: “The black people . . . they’re so . . . dangerous.” I got a similar unprovoked reaction while I was sitting at a gate in the Shanghai airport. A complete stranger was returning from Massachusetts and suddenly delivered a rant about how blacks were brutish and weird.

When African students began arriving at my university in higher numbers last year, the Pakistani and Chinese students were initially excited about getting to know them. I watched the excitement turn to confusion and disgust.

     Now anecdotes like the above are essentially meaningless. Some things, some people need to see with their own eyes. On the other hand, for the sufficiently intelligent, reviewing data and considering empirical evidence can help:

One of my Chinese friends couldn’t believe there was evidence for blacks having lower IQs and higher crime rates than whites and Asians. I pulled up Jared Taylor’s American Renaissance video “Race Differences in Intelligence” on YouTube and let her watch. I then showed her videos of the Ferguson riots, flash mobs carried out by “youths,” and videos of the knockout game. Her perspective changed in a single evening. She was shocked, and told me her whole perception of America and race relations had changed. She’s been “red-pilled” ever since.

     Now, I’ve quoted lots of “unpopular” things from the article above (and left a few things out that are just too dangerous for me to even quote), things that would easily cost a person his job if he dared say them in the United States. As always, one must review the comments section to see how well the ideas fly. None of the comments dispute what’s being said above, none of them are particularly critical, and most are in agreement.

     On the other hand, when I look at an article that says the things SJWs say are politically correct to say, the comments—the few articles that even allow them—consistently have people laughing at how ridiculous the ideas are.

     Why is that?

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Professor To Be Fired For Being White?

By Professor Doom

     It’s no secret identity politics is a big factor in success these days; I mean, we’ve people “self-identifying” as black or American Indian, and scoring pretty good jobs just on the basis of that identification. Granted, this only holds until the “true” identity, whatever that means, is found out, but not every such faker is found, I assure the gentle reader. Moreover, steps are usually taken to make sure the identity is legit, or, hopefully, to make sure the hire is more obviously the correct race or gender. This was especially true when it came to hiring females, though we can’t be so sure of that anymore (not that we should care).

     Higher education has descended to the point where you can’t hire a physicist if he’s a white male, it’s only natural to push a little harder to make sure only the most politically correct races and genders occupy all professorial positions.     Every institution I’ve been at has given preferential treatment to “preferred” genders and races when it comes to the hiring committees. However, it’s still possible to hire the “wrong sort” of people, and after the hire there’s generally no more discussion of race and gender.

      Those days are over, as now the identity politics police are now targeting people who’ve already been hired…strictly on the basis of race. Do they no longer teach the meaning of the word “hypocrisy” in schools?

     Well, here goes:

Black students at Pomona College demand hiring of sociologist be rescinded because she is white

     Now, the above article focuses on the white-ness of the professor, but this whole thing is ridiculous.

Admin: “We gave you a number of female candidates for the position. Why did you hire the male candidate?”

Me: “The females all received many offers from other schools, involving hiring bonuses. We just couldn’t compete, so had to go with the guy.”

Admin: “Fine. We’ll offer larger bonuses to female candidates next time.”

--I assure the gentle reader, we really need to stop basing our hiring decisions like this.

     Pomona got a professor with the right gender, that’s something of a coup right there. Alas she’s just not black enough, although truth be told this seems a worthy scholar despite her lack of human stain:

She started her career with a bang, spending six years (!) in participant observation of black street gangs, resulting in a dissertation that was honored as the best of the year by the American Sociological Association, and which resulted in a book, On the Run: Fugitive Life in an American City. While she was generally sympathetic to her subjects (and could not have gained access to them otherwise), Goffman ran into a firestorm of criticism, partly because she reported unflattering things about black people, and partly because she did what was necessary to gain access, including destroying some of her notes that could have implicated some of her subjects.

     So, she’s honest, brave, well respected, and a scholar. She’s probably eloquent, too. Can we just overlook her skin color here? Nope:

The “Letter to the Pomona College Sociology Department,” published last Friday argues that by hiring Goffman, the administration has neglected their commitment to promoting diversity and supporting women of color.

“This practice is detrimental to Pomona’s goal of supporting students of color.”

The collective of “Sociology students, alumni, and allies” open their letter by expressing their “anger” and “concern” regarding Goffman’s hire, calling it a “failure” to address the lack of professors of color on campus.

      Like most progressive demands, it ignores reality. There’s a huge glut of Ph.D.s, and only a handful of legitimate academic jobs open up every year. Much like I noticed on the hiring committee, applicants with the “right” race/gender combination get offers and bonuses wherever they apply. White/male scum take whatever they get offered…and they only get those offers after the preferred race/gender combos get their pick.

      It’s quite possible Pomona offered a big hiring bonus to “professors of color” who applied, but, bottom line, those professors were offered bigger bonuses elsewhere (assuming any at all applied to Pomona).  So they did the best they could.

Further, they argue that because the majority (56.7 percent) of students in the Sociology department are now people of color, it is problematic for the department to continue hiring white people.

     Wait…not to be elitist here, but Sociology isn’t exactly a high demand field. Shouldn’t these students ask why they’re being shuttled into coursework that will not pay for itself?

       Sociology usually isn’t a major department on schools; I took a course in it, and sure didn’t notice any preponderance of the preferred minority there. My friends in academia were surprised when I mentioned Pomona’s weird distribution. How did it happen this way? Well, turns out Pomona is part of a family of schools, where students are more or less sorted:

Pomona is a sister college of Claremont McKenna College, where Heather Mac Donald was violently prevented from speaking, and Harvey Mudd College, the formerly highly-regarded engineering and sciences college, where black students caused classes to be cancelled by a sit-in protesting the workload they face and demanding money for pet campus race-based organizations.

     The campuses are not just sorted, but being taken over by this ideology, which inevitably ends in a circular firing squad of self-destruction. Consider what’s happening at Mudd College: students get a reduced workload, and an identity politics takeover.

     Then what? Employers quickly realize “Oh, they have engineering degrees, but Mudd is a fake school so I’m not going to hire from there.”

     Will all those unemployable ideologues with fake engineering degrees feel like winners? I doubt it.

The students demand that the school not only rescind its offer to hire Goffman, but also explain the rationale for extending the offer originally, additionally insisting on the creation of “influential student positions on the hiring committee” to prevent this type of situation from happening again.
“The hiring of Alice Goffman has already, and will continue to discourage students of color, and especially women of color, from entering the Sociology Department and academia for years to come,” say the 128 signatories, who are keeping their names redacted for fear of “the violence inflicted on communities of color by various publications, namely the Claremont Independent.”

     It’s so weird. When I was a student, the vast majority of my courses were taught by “non straight/white/males.” Other than language issues, I was never discouraged by the skin color of my professors, and it never occurred to me that, say, an Asian professor couldn’t possibly discuss the ideas of Newton, an Englishman, when it came to calculus or whatever.

      Pomona probably won’t dismiss the professor, but there’s a real chilling effect here: other schools see what’s happening, and will doubtless make it even more clear to hiring committees to not even consider people with white skin for positions. While I often criticize admin, I don’t blame them now: if extending their racist and bigoted hiring policies cuts down on the rioting and protests, I concede those policies are defensible.

      That said, I really wish admin would consider long term strategies for reducing rioting, such as bringing back entrance exams and other ideas to restrict higher education to people more interested in learning than rioting.

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Duke Divinity Crisis Shows SJW Tactics

By Professor Doom

     As we see our campuses descend into riots over the most idiotic, non-academic issues of concern only to the most rabid of Social Justice Warriors, many huge questions arise. Why did Berkeley police stand down in the face of Leftist rioters? Why are the administrators and staff assaulting students who support free speech? Why is it the independent press that identifies the attackers, and not the mainstream media or police?

      One question stands above all others: how did the SJWs take over higher education? While the answer is “one position at a time,” it’s interesting to follow the tactics involved. An incident at Duke Divinity demonstrates how it works, and while the incident occurred a few months ago, only recently did the documentation finally get leaked to the public.

      The beginning of the incident is simple enough, yet another SJW-inspired meeting on campus:

On behalf of the Faculty Diversity and Inclusion Standing Committee, I strongly urge you to participate in the Racial Equity Institute Phase I Training planned…

      I’ve certainly been to a few of these, and they are positively nuts. One quick standout line from a Diversity meeting I was forced to go to:

“You should teach blacks the same way you teach pedophiles and rapists…”

--I’m serious, and this wasn’t even the most insulting part of the ‘training’ I was given credit for at the meeting...

     In a word, these meetings are excruciating. Other, less professional, words come to mind, of course, but bottom line the meetings are a huge waste of time, on top of just how insulting much of the material is. Of course, the people putting on the meeting do what they can to make it sound like a great idea:

Those who have participated in the training have described it as transformative, powerful, and life-changing. We recognize that it is a significant commitment of time;

      Life-changing is one of those buzzwords that’s turned into a flag meaning “avoid at all costs.” I’ve mentioned other disastrous things in higher education presented as life changing; if you have to overblow what you’re selling by such a huge margin, you must be selling crap so foul that any positive description would be a massive exaggeration, so you may as well go with something huge like “life changing.”

     I really want to emphasize just how painful these meetings are:

8:30—5 pm both days. Participants should plan to attend both full days of training…It is the first step in a longer process.

      The very highly paid commissars who put on these shows really have nothing better to do with their time…but I assure you scholars can easily find something superior to being subjected to 16 hours of being insulted, and being told that more is to follow doesn’t help.

      Now, the first time around, faculty don’t know better, and we diligently file in to the meeting. These meetings pile up, however, and sooner or later, one faculty snaps, and decides to try to kill some of this infestation with a touch of truth. This is what happened at Duke Divinity: a professor tried to speak out against the madness the commissars are trying to impose.

       Let’s see what the professor has to say. Normally I’d snip the highlights but a quotation in full is in order here:

Dear Faculty Colleagues,

I’m responding to [Commissar] Thea’s exhortation that we should attend the Racial Equity Institute Phase 1 Training scheduled for 4-5 March. In her message she made her ideological commitments clear. I’ll do the same, in the interests of free exchange.
I exhort you not to attend this training. Don’t lay waste your time by doing so. It’ll be, I predict with confidence, intellectually flaccid: there’ll be bromides, clich├ęs, and amen-corner rah-rahs in plenty. When (if) it gets beyond that, its illiberal roots and totalitarian tendencies will show. Events of this sort are definitively anti-intellectual. (Re)trainings of intellectuals by bureaucrats and apparatchiks have a long and ignoble history; I hope you’ll keep that history in mind as you think about this instance.

     We here at Duke Divinity have a mission. Such things as this training are at best a distraction from it and at worst inimical to it. Our mission is to thnk [sic], read, write, and teach about the triune Lord of Christian confession. This is a hard thing. Each of us should be tense with the effort of it, thrumming like a tautly triple-woven steel thread with the work of it, consumed by the fire of it, ever eager for more of it. We have neither time nor resources to waste. This training is a waste. Please, ignore it. Keep your eyes on the prize.

     Now, Duke Divinity is a religious school, and he reinforces what the school’s mission is. All our institutions of higher education have mission statements, and, much like at Duke Divinity, they’ve fallen far astray.

     The Dean had to respond with a mass e-mail to counter our brave professor’s heresy. Naturally, she (at the risk of being redundant) smacks down the heretic in her response, and one line in particular is obnoxious:

The use of mass emails to express racism, sexism, and other forms of bigotry is offensive and unacceptable, especially in a Christian institution.

     Wow, good thing I quoted the professor in full above. Does the gentle reader see any racism, sexism, or bigotry in the professor’s rant? Why is it that every…single…time…someone tries to speak out against what’s happening on our campuses they get buried under such labels?

     Administration has incredible power over faculty now. The professor’s heresy is not simply countered with a mass e-mail/libel/humiliation from the Dean, there’s more, as the professor explains:

My speech and writing about these topics has now led to two distinct (but probably causally related) disciplinary procedures against me, one instigated by…our Dean, and the other instigated by [Commissar] Thea Portier-Young, our colleague...
These disciplinary proceedings are designed not to engage and rebut the views I hold and have expressed about the matters mentioned, but rather to discipline me for having expressed them.

--in case the gentle reader is curious, the exact charges against the heretic are “unprofessional conduct” and “harassment.” One can be certain the kangaroo committees will be unanimous of their findings.

     This is key to what happened in our institutions of higher ed: you speak out, and you are punished. Instead of the two full days of being insulted at the training session, the heretic will now endure weeks of being disciplined and dealing with hearings and written responses. It’s nuts, and the other faculty realize that in terms of time wasted, they’re better off with the indoctrination.

     The kangaroo court system gets away with so much because it operates in secrecy. The heretic is doing what he can to reveal it:

[Dean] Heath’s and [Commissar] Portier-Young’s disciplinary proceedings are not public: they’re veiled, and accompanied by threats of reprisal if unveiled. I’d like them to take responsibility for what they’re doing, and so I’m making it public...

       This is not simply a disgruntled professor making wild claims. I’ve been on secret committees where, after the accused made his defense, the accuser was secretly invited in to provide more secret testimony and secret evidence the accused never knew about, or had a chance to respond to (I’m certain much of the testimony/evidence was rubbish, but there were threats of reprisal if we didn’t do as admin wished…).

     There are numerous documents regarding what’s being done to the heretic. Yes, he has tenure, but the endless harassment and piling on of charges can lead to only one conclusion because this treatment will not allow him to pursue honorable work:

According to a source close to [Heretic] Griffiths, he has resigned, effective at the end of the 2017-18 academic year.

     And this, gentle reader, is how our educational system was lost. A faculty member makes even one complaint in an attempt to stop the takeover, and he’s buried under accusations of racism, unprofessionalism, harassment, or a host of other ridiculous possibilities. He can try to defend himself, but our institutions use a kangaroo court system where even the most ridiculous of charges merit convictions and punishments (with the Game of Thrones Professor saga being the best example so far, even if he did eventually get a pardon by taking things to the “real” court system).

       In the face of a system completely hostile to the mission of higher education, the scholar sees no better option than to leave. His position will be filled by another Commissar, and she’ll do a fine job.

      As always the comments section gives a bit more information:

[Commissar] Anathea Porter-Young…A quick Facebook search allowed me to investigate exactly what it is she teaches about the bible. She’s bragging on Facebook about ‘queering’ the bible and inserting Transgender Teachings as required Textbooks. Once again, another Institution has been successfully subverted by dead-eyed, socialist creeps.

      Hey, remember when a professor at a Jesuit school was suspended for being pro-heterosexual marriage, and saying as much publicly online? I do. Why doesn’t this madness go both ways? Oh yeah: madness.