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Tuesday, November 29, 2011

The Higher Learning Commission Needs to Know



I want someone to hear me.. said...

Diogenes, please explain to us how this works. Are we supposed to direct our comments on UT to this email address? How do we know that Larry Burns or Lloyd Jacobs are not reading them? Is this truly anonymous?

I know that the administration has tried very hard to control the process--even being worried about the assessors hearing stray comments on the elevators.

Anonymous said...

Anyone with praise or concerns about the stewardship and condition of our university and who wants direct access to the members of the Higher Learning Commission can report to them via this secure link. Your report (comments) can be "Anonymous" or signed, as you dictate. Clearly state your preferences in this regard when using this link.

Anonymous said...

I think the question to Diogenes was about maintaining total anonymity.

Either way, what is the guarantee that HLC visitors will act on the complaints from concerned faculty?

Small talk in the elevators (few seconds between floors) will not help things turn around. HLC visitors will be coming to a war zone. Another concern is that these HLC visitors may be corrupt and easily swayed by smooth-talk and generous hospitality (dinners, sports events, you name it...) by admin -- all covered of course through the general and some illegitimately hi-jacked funds (NO! not their bonuses), so will there be any improvement as a result of HLC visit?

Some administrators may hope that this will be another farce of higher education...

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 8:49. I know who you are! (har! har!).

And, you are much too negative and cynical. This HLC investigation team has the capacity and may have the will to intervene responsibly on behalf of UT main campus students, faculty, staff and alumni in order to right the egregious wrongs inflicted by the inept Jacobs administration on an esteemed academic reputation and proud traditions.

The timely intervention of the HLC team can reverse the obvious and measurable descent into mediocrity this campus has suffered due to BOT/Jacobs mismanagement over the past six years. The rapid dismantling and decline of the academic function of Carlson Library and the senseless, mean-spirited destruction of A&S College are two glaring examples.

No one except the conspirators and flunkies behind this systematic and intentional academic decline can ignore the obvious: since the advent of Jacobs Inc. there has been no measurable value added to the main campus academic mission. Faculty and staff morale are presently abysmal.

Students meanwhile seem too caught up in bread and circuses these days to pay close attention to their shameful manipulation by derelict stewards with small or no concern for bettering the intellectual learning environment and thus the present and future conditions of all hope-filled and hard-working students on the main campus.

Faculty and staff can either sing praise to the Jacobs leadership or articulate their concerns by sharing relevant anecdotes and data with the HLC. Whichever, the HLC needs to know the extent of good management or mismanagement in quantitative and qualitative detail. So click open the secure email address provided here and speak your own mind and heart.

Anonymous said...

Look what the cat dragged in: The Orwellian thought police (from 1984), a psychic, or just simply my long-lost soul mate (Anonymous 1214PM, dec3) :-))

We all need to be united on this front as concerned faculty, librarians, staff, and students. So, a good balance of cautious optimism, cynicism, even mixed in with negativism may be needed because there are cases where the feds have turned a blind eye on serious issues (like mine safety) and turned the other way, or hid their heads in the sand.

I am sure we all have seen big pharma's hands only got slapped when in fact many victims of our lousy insurance system died because the FDA failed. Or when the Education Department just watched the biggest abuses in the student loan area by some universities getting kickbacks for the interest they made for preferred (and private) lenders. We never saw those administrators led away in chains on TV...

I heard the UT administrators expected faculty to memorize something to be told to HLC visitors in those slow-moving elevators. Perhaps they can slow those elevators even more... Will the elevators be bugged?

You are right on getting as many people to support this cause as possible, but are they specifically coming to investigate the egregious wrongs? Or is it just a visit to extend UTs accreditation? In that case, they may not be much concerned about internal politics.

Do they really care about the library and the low morale among its staff and faculty -- which is being exploited?

Are they going to restore the library to its independent (COIL-free) status and return the books and journals that were thrown out on a previous dean's orders (word has it that he's getting a big paycheck for his failures).

Will this visit further expose the wrongs by Jacobs, Inc. and its overpaid cronies in administration and BOT??? Even if they get exposed (probably not through the Blade), will the public care (true, their taxes are supporting this university acting like hospital with a small office called "the university")?

I would propose that we all submit our concerns, praises, etc, and be given a chance to comment on the draft -- if there is time. When is this submission due?

Maybe UT-AAUP can reorganize and make sure that the good visitors from HLC truly hear our voices.

Anonymous said...

The HLC won't solve our problems, but their visit can certainly make more visible our problems. That in turn will demonstrate the ineffective leadership on this campus and put pressure on the BOT to revise its opinion of Lloyd Jacobs and his cronies, and revise their own half-baked, uninformed decisions. The HLC visit is an important opportunity to make public the sloppy decision-making processes that violate our own institutional policies. If the team from HLC is intelligent, it will include in its report and comments a serious concern for lack of shared governance here. HLC has required follow-up visits at other institutions when it has determined a lack of shared governance. The recent initiative of the BOT to institute a University Senate with no clear precipitating reason should signal to the HLC that the Jacobs administration is deliberately trying to oust faculty from shared governance even as it gives lip-service to staff and student input. While the HLC can see good things happening on this campus (good faculty working hard, good students studying hard, good staff working hard), it will also see that we are seriously hampered by hordes of self-interested administrators whose main preoccupation is increasing the size of their already bloated salaries.

Anonymous said...

For better or worse, the current dramatic changes at UT and more broadly in higher Ed have been precipitated by inescapable economic realities i.e. there is simply not enough money to fund the inefficient and unsustainable American education status quo.

Peter Schweizer's latest book describes the unsustainable agenda driven policies and boom and bust bubble economics of student loans, government housing programs etc. that are bringing ruin to American college campuses and the American dream:

Architects of Ruin: How big government liberals wrecked the global economy---and how they will do it again if no one stops them

Was the financial collapse caused by free-market capitalism and deregulation run amok, as liberals claim?

Not on your life, says Peter Schweizer. What we are really witnessing is a massive failure of social engineering by liberals.

Architects of Ruin, bestselling author Peter Schweizer describes in riveting detail how a coalition of left-wing activists, liberal politicians, and "do-good capitalists" on Wall Street leveraged government power to achieve their goal of broadening homeownership among minorities and the poor. The results were not only devastating to the economy, but hurt the very people they were supposedly trying to help.

The story begins in the 1960s with Saul Alinsky, the legendary Chicago rabble-rouser who trained his acolytes in highly aggressive techniques of community activism. Alinsky's disciples—along with race-baiting activists like Jesse Jackson—seized on the "redlining" controversy of those years to argue that banks were guilty of racial discrimination. In the 1970s, with the help of liberal senators like Ted Kennedy and William Proxmire, legislation was passed that put bankers under the thumb of local activists.

In the Clinton years, a new generation of liberal technocrats came to power in Washington and on Wall Street. Schweizer describes how a powerful phalanx of elite liberals, including Bill Clinton, Robert Rubin, Andrew Cuomo, Barney Frank, Chris Dodd, Janet Reno, Deval Patrick, Henry Cisneros, Barack Obama, Nancy Pelosi, Ted Kennedy, Charles Schumer, and many others, aggressively pushed banks to make trillions of dollars in loans to individuals who should never have received them.

Meanwhile, Clinton forged a new form of state capitalism in which the big Wall Street financial companies were repeatedly bailed out—with their profits intact—from a series of costly errors, leading them to take ever larger risks. Both financial policies had profoundly distorting effects. The result was the bursting of twin bubbles in mortgages and mortgage-backed derivatives, in turn leading to a global economic collapse.

This tale of liberal "Robin Hood capitalism run wild" has never been told. But more than just a story about the past, it is also an urgent warning about the future. For today, the very same people who planted the seeds of the collapse are back in Washington, tasked with cleaning up the mess and determined to use the crisis they caused as cover for a massive overhaul of the American economic system.

These people have learned nothing from their past mistakes and are busy applying the same methods to other sectors of the economy—health care, the auto industry, real estate (again!), and above all the promotion of "green" technologies—inflating bubbles that are sure to bring about another crisis. Ordinary Americans who foot the bill for the last state-capitalist bubble have reason to be afraid—very afraid—of the inevitable

Anonymous said...

The HLC needs to know about this...

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 7:17. Ho-hum. Have you no original thoughts? If not, use quotes and cite your sources.

Everything posted in this idiotic neo-conservative Hoover Institution screed you burden us with here is plagiarized from idiotic neo-conservative Hoover Institution screeds easily accessible on

Pathetic One: Get a brain. Contribute something original to a conversation. Empower yourself instead of your pathologically profiteering puppeteers.

Anonymous said...

Liberal Screed Buzzword Name Caller 2:59:

I happen to have more original thoughts in my little pinky than you could even attempt to conceive.

It should have been obvious to anyone it was a clipped book description.

Typical of you to focus on a minor MLA style oversight on an informal blog and resort immediately to knee-jerk name calling rather than actually trying to address any of the salient points.

And what pray tell are your "original thoughts" -- oh irrelevant-liberal-grant-funded-propaganda-producing One?

That's okay... don't bother.

We already know Rachael Maddow and the other MSNBC talking pinhead types do your "thinking" for you.

Anonymous said...

Anon 2:59

Great job catching those missing quotation marks, Ralphie!

We’ll be sure to put a gold star on your Red Rider BB Gun Christmas theme paper!

Be careful not to get too excited, though, or you’ll shoot your eye out!

Thank you, Ralphie…

Merry Christmas, Ralphie…



You can take your seat now, Ralphie…

Anonymous said...

Dear Anonymous of Dec 5, 1108:

It's not the HLC but the DEA (or even ATF) :-)))) Those butt huts are everywhere: maybe we should install A/C, heating, flatscreen TVs, boomboxes to get smokers more comfortable. After all, who's gonna see our high-paid UT ($400K+) physicians if nobody gets sick????

Anonymous said...


There's a clever spelling error hidden just for you in the previous post.

Did you catch it?

Hint: Be sure to drink your Ovaltine AND don't let Black Bart and his gang RIDE away.

Good luck!