Tag Archives: queer

Emmer and Keeton–Two Terrible Decisions on Academic Freedom

Emmer and Keeton.pngIt’s
not often that a university’s personnel decision is so egregious that even the
editorial pages of the local newspaper denounce it. That occurred with Hamline
University, whose seemingly rescinded appointment to Tom Emmer generated a
blistering editorial
from the Minneapolis

Between 2004 and 2010, Emmer served as a prominent member of
the Republican caucus in the Minnesota House of Representatives. In 2010, he
gave up his legislative seat to launch a bid for governor, running on a very
conservative platform; despite trailing by considerable margins in polls
throughout the race, he wound up losing by less than one percent of the vote.
After a year in the private sector, Emmer decided to try out academia, and
Hamline’s Business School made arrangements for him to teach a course in
business law and serve as an “executive in residence” for a
state/local public policy program that the school was starting. It seemed that
both sides considered the semester as a trial run for a possible permanent

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No Tenure, Incorrect Citations, And Queer Studies

– The chancellor of the Washington D.C. public school system is considering a dual-track system of employment – one with lower pay and traditional job protections, and one with higher pay, fewer protections, and greater chances for raises. Richard Vedder suggests the same for universities:

..You can either go for job security or for higher income. The reasoning is that tenure imposes costs, most of them implicit and hidden, that are very real. Universities have a terrible time shifting resources to meet changing needs. It is hard to fire teachers of medieval history and hire experts in nanotechnology – even if it makes great sense to do so. Tenure breads arrogance and an unwillingness to obey university policies or even laws. It allows mediocre teachers to continue to do little, seemingly forever. So why not consider tenure a fringe benefit, but put a limit on the amount of fringe benefits available to each faculty member – forcing a choice between, say, a Lexus style insurance policy and no tenure or a low cost insurance policy and the possibility of gaining tenure (and, ultimately, the awarding of it).

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