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Saturday, April 28, 2007 at 3:02:19 mdt
Does it ever make you weary, facing the world looking for something or someone to condemn?
Saturday, April 28, 2007 at 3:05:09 mdt
Name: Diana Hsieh
Oh, silly me, I should just give everyone hugs and kisses. That'll be so much easier than bothering with basic moral standards. I'll be sure to give all my students As too, including the plagiarizers. They need love too.
Saturday, April 28, 2007 at 4:24:16 mdt
Name: Kyle Haight
I can't help but note that Diana doesn't *need* to look for people to condemn; they come to her and make idiotic anonymous posts on her blog.
Saturday, April 28, 2007 at 7:40:50 mdt
Name: Nicholas Provenzo
The fact that any scholar would attempt to defend Ward Churchill despite his engaging in deliberate and egregious fraud is a revealing miscarriage of justice. Given the brazen dishonestly of the attacks lobed against John Lewis at George Mason University last week, I can only conclude that some in academia think that dishonesty is a virtue.
Saturday, April 28, 2007 at 8:01:51 mdt
I bet the difference in attitude is this: When students cheat or lie, it's purely for mercenary reasons (get a good grade, pass the course, etc.). Whereas, with Churchill, though he might have lied, it was in the service of a "noble" ideal (i.e. condemning Western Civilization as evil). So even if he fabricated his facts, his heart was in the right place, and we shouldn't be too hard on him.
Saturday, April 28, 2007 at 12:45:16 mdt
That anyone would allow any credibility to Churchill is, pardon the pun, incredible. I wouldn't say it's intellectual bankruptcy. Bankruptcy implies that one had assets and lost them--intellectual bankruptcy means you lost the intelligence you once possessed. But to give Churchill credence implies that one never had intelligence to begin with. It's intellectual poverty.
The intellectual duplicity is no doubted justified in his mind by the maxim that the end justifies the means. No doubt he never stopped to think that perhaps the means can degrade the ends.
Tuesday, May 1, 2007 at 3:49:59 mdt
Name: Brian Leiter
Ms. Hsieh, you seem to have read my comments as carelessly as you read the report on Churchill's research misconduct, assuming you actually read anything more than the summary of findings. There was no "excuse" offered for Churchill's shoddy scholarship; indeed, I even went out of my way to say that Mr. Wilson had soft-peddled the scholarly infractions. The contrast I drew was with those like Volokh who obviously did not read the report, but were all too eager to draw dramatic conclusions and sanction the worst punishments. Indeed, quite obviously I would have thought, the main point of my comments was that given the *actual* findings, the punishment of termination is plainly far too severe, and the explanation for why that punishment is being endorsed obviously has nothing to do with the infractions in question.
Ghostwriting papers for others is pretty odd, but if it is an infraction, it is surely for those who then pass that work off as their own, not the ghostwriter. The report on Churchill's research misconduct--did you read it?--adduces no evidence that he cited these papers as "independent sources": he cited them as sources, period. The investigative committee then invented, as far as I can tell from the evidence they adduce, that he was mustering them as "independent" sources. And he did not cite them to corroborate "false legal and historical claims." (Indeed, it turns out the precious few of Churchill's claims were shown to be "false," though some were pretty contentious.)
Perusing your blog, I infer that you probably do not much care for Churchill's politics. This would go some distance to explaining your eagerness to misrepresent both the facts about the allegations against Churchill and what I wrote about them.
Please try to do better in the future.
Tuesday, May 1, 2007 at 4:10:56 mdt
Name: Fred Weiss
"Ghostwriting papers for others is pretty odd, but if it is an infraction, it is surely for those who then pass that work off as their own, not the ghostwriter."
The only thing odd here is your sense of ethics, Mr. Leiter
It's like saying that providing someone with the complete lay-out of the bank, including all the keys to the doors, safe combinations, and instructions for how to disable the alarms, is not a crime. Afterall, you didn't rob the bank.
Tuesday, May 1, 2007 at 7:17:28 mdt
Name: Brian Leiter
The bank robbery case and the ghostwriting case are not analogous, since there is no scenario in which bank robbery is permissible, but many in which we as a society sanction and permit ghost-writing. It seems to me odd, as I said, to ghost-write for others, but standing alone, it is not a significant infraction. Only on a showing that the ghost-writer aided and abetted someone else's misrepresentation of their own professional achievements might your analogy be apt, but I do not recall that as a finding of the report on Churchill's research misconduct. Moreover, even a showing that this is what Professor Churchill had done would not warrant termination; indeed, I am aware of no precedent at an institution of higher learning in which this punishment was meted out for this kind of offense. The central issue remains that the proposed punishment is wildly disproportionate to the scholarly offenses, and that the only reason this is so is because Churchill is being punished for his offensive political speech.
Tuesday, May 1, 2007 at 8:05:03 mdt
Name: Fred Weiss
I don't believe that ghost-writing in an academic setting is considered permissible, particularly where the ghost-writing resulted in misrepresenting someone's academic achievements. I'm surprised that you don't consider that grounds for termination. I'd be surprised if it hasn't been, even if the incidence is relatively rare. I assume it is grounds for expulsion of students and I know that's happened.