St. Lawrence University and The Effort To Rescind The Honorary Degree Of Susan Collins

Below is my column in The Hill newspaper on the call by alumni and professors at St. Lawrence University to strip Sen. Susan Collins (R., Maine) of her honorary degree in light of her vote to confirm Justice Brett Kavanaugh.  The university has now confirmed that they have never rescinded an honorary degree and will not start with Collins.  Putting aside the prevalent “rape culture” declared by almost a hundred faculty members, the two letters reflect the diminishing hold of intellectual honesty and integrity at our places of higher education.

Here is the column:

When Republican senator Susan Collins joined 49 of her colleagues to confirm Justice Brett Kavanaugh to the United States Supreme Court, critics pledged to defeat her in the next election. Indeed, advocates who oppose Kavanaugh raised millions in contributions that would be released to her next opponent if she dared to vote for his confirmation.

Faculty and alumni of St. Lawrence University, however, are not satisfied in changing her future. They want to rewrite part of her past. In a raw act of retaliation, they are demanding that the college rescind an honorary degree awarded to Collins in 2017. Just one year ago, Collins was honored for her independent thinking and integrity, but now professors and graduates want her stripped of the degree for exercising such values in opposition to their own views. For exercising such independence, she is now denounced as lacking “integrity and commitment” to justice.

The demand could easily be dismissed as the expression of the far left element at a well known liberal institution. In the end, it is unlikely that St. Lawrence will take this extreme action. Collins is, arguably, its most famous living graduate. However, it is part of a rising wave of intolerance across the country against conservative views, including actual assaults committed by faculties and students.

Before her Senate vote on Kavanaugh, Collins gave a thoughtful speech explaining why she had demanded further investigation into the allegations of sexual assaults raised against Kavanaugh and why she concluded those allegations remained unproven or refuted. One could certainly disagree with her logic or her view that no further investigation was necessary. According to one poll, more than 40 percent of Americans agreed with her, while 51 percent opposed the Kavanaugh confirmation.

Yet, almost 2,000 alumni and dozens of faculty at St. Lawrence want to punish Collins for reaching a conclusion opposite from theirs. She now is deemed to have deviated “from the path” and thus lacks the “core values” of the school. Of course, there was a time when “core values” were defined as tolerance of opposing views and the exercise of free speech.

If the letter of the graduates is hard to fathom, the cause becomes clearer when you read the letter from the roughly 100 professors supporting the action against Collins. The letter shows precisely why students could leave St. Lawrence with so little notion of intellectual integrity and tolerance. The professors implausibly assert that their call for this punitive action is “not rooted in partisan loyalties or disagreements.” Instead, their disagreement with her vote is considered sufficient justification to rescind the degree as a “fitting consequence to her detrimental and unprincipled actions.” The professors not only denounce the “rape culture” at St. Lawrence but declare that this culture “no doubt influenced the actions Senator Collins took during the Kavanaugh hearings.” That is right, Collins voted out of her own facilitation of a “rape culture.”

Across the country, faculty members have led students in shocking demonstrations against free speech and even violence against those with opposing views. While the violence is thankfully rare, the response can be unnerving. At the University of California at Santa Barbara, feminist studies professor Mireille Miller Young led her students in attacking pro-life advocates, stealing their display, and then committing battery on a young woman. Despite pleading no contest to criminal assault, Miller Young not only was retained but widely supported by faculty and students, including those who viewed the pro-life advocates as “terrorists” who should be kept off campus. This week, the University of Oregon gender studies department is featuring her as a speaker.

Last week, a Ryerson University employee attacked pro-life students on campus. Earlier, California State University assistant professor of public health professor Greg Thatcher led students in wiping out pro-life statements of students after telling them that they had no free speech outside of restricted zones. He is wrong but was still retained as faculty. Earlier this year, University of New Hampshire professor Joelle Ruby Ryanscreamed profanities and tried to shut down an online talk show host who was calling for free speech protections on campuses. Last year, Middlebury College professor Allison Stanger was injured by protesters after she merely accompanied a controversial speaker to campus.

For too many professors and students, free speech is now viewed as a privilege to be enjoyed only by those with whom they agree. Indeed, the intolerance shown in the St. Lawrence campaign is often disguised as principles in works like “Antifa: The Anti-Fascist Handbook” by Dartmouth professor Mark Bray. This movement denounces classic liberalism. It rejects the notion of protecting free speech for its own sake and rejects “coexistence” in favor of a goal “to end their politics.”

Academic institutions once prided themselves on a broad array of divergent views and values. There was not a single “path” but rather common “principles” allowing students to find their own place in this world of ideas. It was based on mutual respect and tolerance for those holding opposing positions. Today, campaigns on campuses like the one at St. Lawrence reflect how ignorance of, and even hostility toward, these basic values is fueling our age of rage. Faculty are replicating their own intolerance in students who have been taught that free speech means the right to shut down or punish those with opposing views.

There is no longer a willingness to accept that people like Collins could come to good faith but opposing conclusions. It is easier to declare the Maine senator to be a champion of a “rape culture.” It may be true that critics will “end the politics” of Collins in the next election. That is fair game in a representative democracy. That is a right such as free speech protected by democratic institutions. However, this is different.

These professors and graduates are seeking to retroactively punish Susan Collins for reaching a conclusion different from their own. The professors denounced her for undermining the “crucial role of evidence based decision making in democratic processes” simply because she came to a different view of the evidence by using her once heralded independent judgment. These professors and students vividly demonstrate how power without principle is little more than a mob dressed up as a movement.

Jonathan Turley is the Shapiro Professor of Public Interest Law at George Washington University. You can follow him on Twitter @JonathanTurley.

85 thoughts on “St. Lawrence University and The Effort To Rescind The Honorary Degree Of Susan Collins”

  1. It would be interesting to find out the “demographics” of the faculty who supported revoking Collins’s honorary degree vs. those who were mute/did not. I’d bet those supporting revocation were quite a bit younger than the balance of the faculty.

    1. Median age 48. I think faculty median age is generally around 51. The department count is

      Anthropology 5
      Art & Art History 4
      Biology 6
      Chemistry 2
      Education 4
      English 8
      Environmental studies 4
      Film 1
      First-Year Program 4
      Gender and Sexuality Studies 1
      Global Studies 4
      Government 5
      Modern Languages and Literatures 8
      History 5
      Math / Computer science / statistics 9
      Music 1
      Center for Arts Technology 1
      Economics 1
      Outdoor Studies 2
      Performance & Communication Arts 6
      Philosophy 4
      Physics 2
      Psychology 2
      Religious Studies 5
      Sociology 3

      1. Tabby, here’s another example of how you frequently cite statistics with no reference to where you got them.

        These statistics could be perfectly valid. And I would like to think they are. But why not let us know where you pulled them from?

        1. 1. The signatories of the bloody petition are listed on the previous thread devoted to this topic. With the departments listed

          2. St. Lawrence offers a (stupidly formatted) capsule biography of each faculty member. Some of them append a pdf of the CV and all but a few you can locate with a White Pages search or on LinkedIn.

          3. Its a reasonable inference that their victimology programs consist of ‘corresponding faculty’ from conventional departments. IIRC, the one who identified herself with the ‘Gender and Sexuality Studies’ program is a visiting lecturer. That would account for the deficit of faculty from inter-disciplinary programs

          4. They appear to dump their foreign language faculty in an omnibus department, so it’s not immediately evident with of those subfaculties did not participate.

          5. AFAICT, the only departments whose faculty abstained across the board were geology and athletics. Out of film, music, and economics, they got only a beach=head. Given the presumptive size of that faculty, the contingent from psychology is small. The contingent from sociology is smaller than you’d expect. The number of math and computer science professors they persuaded to affix their names to this drivel is stunning and an indication that the pathology infects the whole institution, not just the usual suspect departments. (The usual suspects are sociology, anthropology, and English in the arts and sciences; the academic wing of the communications faculty; and the teacher-training and social work faculties).

  2. Just curious, is senator Collins a racist as well as enabling a rapist. We can’t leave any stones unturned.

  3. Where is this so called university? Is it on the St. Lawrence Seaway? Freeway?

    1. upstate NY not far from there, small town, farm country. beautiful area, really
      Canton, NY


    It seems that Professor Turley is part of the ‘conservatives are persecuted’ chorus. Even though Republicans are currently spreading lies to the effect that ‘Democrats plan to take away Medicare’, we’re supposed to feel sorry for persecuted conservatives. How badly does Turley want a federal judgeship?

    1. What an ungrateful and insulting pri-k you are Peter Hill. You are typical of your ideology. You use someone elses intellectual workproduct for FREE and then insult the person who permitted you to use it.

      Peter Hill Shill a user.

        1. You are another ungrateful individual that likes to anonymously attack the police. Everyone on this list should be greatful to Professor Turley for permitting us on his playground. You, Anonymous, state it a different way. You would say Professor Turley didn’t build this blog. You are a dummy.

          1. No. Allan, I would say…GFY — and that’s to you, Allan.

            And for the record? I’m a big fan of good cops. It’s the bad ones who bother me.

            And, of course Professor Turley built this blog. Are you on crack?

            1. “And for the record? I’m a big fan of good cops. It’s the bad ones who bother me.”

              No one would no it from the way you speak. But that is something your empty head doesn’t seem to understand.

              How nice to hear you dispute Obama. No, I am not on crack. I don’t take drugs so if that is what you are after find another source.

              1. “How nice to hear you dispute Obama.” -So says Allan the idiot

                Twisting, obfuscating… — but that’s your way, you big dunderhead.

                1. It would be nice if you could prove your case, but you can’t and that has got you in a tizzy. To you anyone that actually is effective is a dunderhead. The police are dunderheads, an increase is wages is for dunderheads, a better life is a dunderhead idea. You sound like a person who has accomplishe zilch in her life or was on the dole.

                    1. Peter Shill, your ability to read personalities is close in ability to your ability to read politics, near non existent and totally self-serving.

    2. Persecuted conservatives? Nah, whatever gave you that idea? Well, sometimes it just feels that way, you know, when someone accuses you of horrible crimes and half the country wants you strung up without the benefit of a trial. Kind of like this story:

      Representative Joaquin Castro (D., Texas) claimed without evidence Friday that White House adviser Jared Kushner may have prompted the Saudi government to assassinate journalist Jamal Khashoggi by including his name on an “enemies list” provided to Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman.

      During an appearance on CNN, Castro cited “reporting that Jared Kushner may have, with U.S. intelligence, delivered a hit list, an enemies list, to the crown prince, to MBS, in Saudi Arabia and that the prince may have acted on that, and one of the people he took action against is Mr. Khashoggi.”

  5. Turley claims: “Yet, almost 2,000 alumni and dozens of faculty at St. Lawrence want to punish Collins for reaching a conclusion opposite from theirs. She now is deemed to have deviated “from the path” and thus lacks the “core values” of the school. Of course, there was a time when “core values” were defined as tolerance of opposing views and the exercise of free speech.” No, Jon, you have it wrong.

    The issue wasn’t a matter of tolerating opposing views or the exercise of free speech. When Dr. Ford came forward and made her credible claims, it boiled down to a binary choice: 1. Declare Dr. Ford a per se liar. Therefore, Kavanaugh should not even be questioned about her accusations; or 2. Upon his denial of Dr. Ford’s accusations, investigate, but do a proper investigation. Choosing to brand Dr. Ford as a per se liar would offend even Republican women, so the idea was hatched (no doubt by Kellyanne) to “investigate”, but to tie the hands of the FBI as to scope and content, thereby assuring the guaranteed outcome of no corroboration. Of course, we the American people aren’t allowed to see the reports generated by the “investigation” to judge for ourselves whether it was adequate or thorough enough.. Over 40 witnesses came forward with information on Kavanaugh that they wanted to put on the record, but were refused interviews. The laughably inadequate “investigation” that was done is the issue, and it amounts to no investigation at all, so we’re back to branding Dr. Ford as a per se liar. In fact, Trump and multiple Republicans are dong just that, and even trying to turn it into a campaign issue because apparently some really stupid people bought the Kellyanne-engineered “righteous indignation” tactic. The “investigation” was just a cover story to appease Flake and Collins. Collins’ reliance on in inadequate investigation and going along with the rush to shove a radically conservative “justice” onto the SCOTUS, to avoid the blue wave coming next month is the issue. The reason for Kavanaugh, as opposed to another person, is to protect Trump from being subpoenaed for records or testimony while he is in office. That, too, is offensive to educated people who don’t believe anyone is above the law. Let’s not forget that all of this takes place in the context of Merrick Garland being denied even a hearing. The entire process is misogynistic and un-democratic, and Collins could have stood for American values instead of party loyalty. That’s why they want to pull her honorary degree, and they should indeed do so, because there are no free speech issues involved whatsoever.

    1. misogynism
      refugees welcome
      believe women
      orange man bad

      yawn another NPC pops up like a mushroom

    2. When Dr. Ford came forward and made her credible claims, it boiled down to a binary choice:

      You are omitting the binary choice made by the Democrats when the allegation was made by Ford: 1. Do we honor Ford’s privacy and work with the committee to immediately investigate this; or 2. Do we sit on it for 6 weeks and use it for political gain if necessary, and violate the alleged victim’s privacy and BK’s right to a presumption of innocence.

      1. That’s more Faux News spin. There’s no evidence that anyone “sat” on the allegation for 6 weeks, or that the allegations were used for political gain. Are Senators supposed to ignore a woman who claims she was assaulted by a candidate for a lifetime appointment to the SCOTUS? Dr. Ford has multiple degrees, has a prestigious job and has no motivation to lie Despite the Faux News spin, there is absolutely no evidence that any Democrat, and especially the Clintons, ever knew her, much less put her up to lying. Dr. Ford reported the incident to a therapist long before Kavanaugh was nominated, and to her husband years ago. Dianne Feinstein turned over the information to the FBI.

        Anyway, what was the reason behind the big rush? That’s really the issue here. The Republicans created a fake crisis by creating a fake deadline solely because they wanted to ensure that the American public had no say as to who got the seat vacated by Scalia that sat empty for over a year. They could have taken the time to properly investigate, but they were afraid of what was coming in November. As soon as the matter became public, every day more and more people came forward to refute Bart’s claim that he was a virginal Catholic high school serious scholar who occasionally drank only beer, and never to excess. His yearbook entries portray him as a sexually promiscuous heavy drinker. He lied about the sexual and heavy drinking meaning of words and phrases in his yearbook. He made false accusations of political motivation behind being questioned about the Dr. Ford incident. The lying and emotional outburst alone should have disqualified him.

        The argument about presumptions is more Kellyanne spin, but in any event, creating a “presumption” that Kavanaugh’s denial is superior to Dr. Ford’s accusation, based on the criminal standard of “innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt”, is misogynistic and misplaced. Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearing was not a criminal trial, but a job interview for a lifetime appointment to America’s court of last resort. There is no specific standard of proof, but in order to carry out the Constitutional obligation to “advise and consent”, the Judiciary Committee should have controlled the investigation to be certain that it was complete and in-depth. That didn’t happen, and that was on purpose. Dr. Ford was equally entitled to a presumption that she was telling the truth. Kavanaugh will never be respected or viewed as legitimate, because he got his seat by political maneuvering. If he had nothing to fear, he should have demanded a complete investigation. Instead, he spent a full week being trained on how to appear righteously indignant at the very suggestion that he could have done what he was accused of.

        1. Natacha, they sat on the allegation for six weeks. Eshoo received the letter in July, turned it over to Feinstein, who, in turn, gave advice and referrals to Blasey in preparation. Feinstein then waits until September to turn the letter over to the FBI. You cannot stop lying.

        2. That’s more Faux News spin. There’s no evidence that anyone “sat” on the allegation for 6 weeks, or that the allegations were used for political gain.

          Is this the Faux News spin you’re talking about? From late July to mid-September, the ranking member had known about Ford’s allegation and did not disclose it to the committee. Is Kellyanne ghost writing for CNN now?

          – July 2018: Ford reached out to the Post’s tip line as Kavanaugh’s name appeared on the shortlist to replace Justice Anthony Kennedy. “Around the same time,” the Post said, Ford contacted her member of Congress, California Democratic Rep. Anna Eshoo.
          – July 9, 2018: President Donald Trump nominated Kavanaugh for the Supreme Court.
          – Late July: Ford opted to contact California Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein via a letter through Eshoo’s office. In the letter, Ford requests Feinstein keep the matter confidential.
          – Early August: On the advice of her attorney Debra Katz, Ford took a polygraph test. The Post said Katz provided the paper with the results of the test, which was administered by a former FBI agent. The results concluded Ford was truthful when she said a statement summarizing her allegations was accurate, according to the newspaper.
          – Late August: As Kavanaugh’s nomination proceeded, Ford said she decided she did not want to go public with her accusations given the expectation that he would be confirmed. She told the Post that her thinking was, “Why suffer through the annihilation if it’s not going to matter?”
          – September 4-7: The Senate Judiciary Committee holds contentious hearings on Kavanaugh in which the nominee was lauded by Republicans and faced with regular interruptions from protesters. No mention is made of the allegations that would surface days later in the media.
          – September 12: The Intercept reported that Feinstein is in possession of a letter detailing an accusation against Kavanaugh and that she would not provide the letter to other members of the committee.
          – September 13: Feinstein said she received information on Kavanaugh and had “referred the matter to federal investigative authorities.” CNN reported that Feinstein had forwarded a letter to the FBI relating to alleged misconduct by Kavanaugh while he was in high school and that the letter Feinstein sent had all the names redacted except for Kavanaugh’s.
          – September 14: The New Yorker reported on the substance of the allegations without naming Ford. CNN reported on details of the allegations. Mark Judge, who was reported that day to have been Kavanaugh’s friend in the room, denied the allegations in an interview with the conservative Weekly Standard. The White House issued a statement from Kavanaugh denying the allegations.
          – September 16: The Washington Post published an article in which Ford comes forward and details her allegations. The White House reiterated Kavanaugh’s statement denying the incident occurred.
          – September 17: Katz said Ford would be willing to speak publicly with lawmakers as key senators voiced interest in delaying a vote on Kavanaugh’s nomination. The White House stood by Kavanaugh, who was seen entering the building and who issued a new statement again denying the allegations and saying he would be willing to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee in an effort to clear his name. Maine Republican Sen. Susan Collins became one of the key undecided senators to say she welcomed testimony from both Kavanaugh and Ford. Iowa GOP Sen. Chuck Grassley, the committee chairman, said, “Anyone who comes forward as Dr. Ford has deserves to be heard, so I will continue working on a way to hear her out in an appropriate, precedented and respectful manner.”

        3. Anonymous – I know this is going to be hard for you to swallow, but the FBI works for the Executive Branch, not Congress. And Kavanaugh had less time to prepare than Chrissy did. I know bad acting when I see it and Chrissy did some bad acting. She was coached and coached heavily. The problem was they did not have time to teach her to cry on command, so they fogged her glasses instead. Once Mitchell got her to relax, she opened up and then it was Katie bar the door.

          Rameriz could not remember if she could remember and Swetnick turned out to be personally fond of group sex and admitted to complicity in gang rapes. The guy with the boat story admitted he lied.

          Then it turns out Chrissy’s Beach Friend is Chuckie Shumer’s friend from SDNYC in PR. She probably wrote Chrissy’s opening statement, or at least helped. The FBI report supposedly says that the leak of Chrissy’s letter came from Chuckie’s office.

          Investigations will continue because the Republicans will retain the Senate for sure.

          1. Paul: I know this is going to be hard for you to swallow, but Congress and the President are supposed to serve the needs of the American public, not the Republican Party, not the oligarchs behind the Republican Party, and not the Democratic Party, either. Most Americans did not vote for your favorite President, and those members of Congress who voted to rush Kavanaugh through represent less than 50% of the American population. Most Americans disapprove of tRump after almost 2 full years, and most did not want Kavanaugh to get onto the SCOTUS. Americans were denied the full investigation called for by the facts, and we won’t forget it, either.

            Please, please tell me what Dr. Ford had to gain by coming forward. Please, please produce proof that the Clintons engineered her testimony. How about proof that she acted in concert with the Democratic Party–do you have any? Haven’t Rush, Hannity, Tucker and Laura come up with anything other than rhetoric? Where’s the proof that Dr. Ford was coached? Do you have any? There is plenty of footage of Kavanaugh going into the White House each and every day prior to his little “righteous indignation” performance. We know Kellyanne works at the White House. So, where’s your proof to back up your claims against Dr. Ford? You claim things that the FBI report says. Produce it. Now.

            1. Natacha, what her private motives are would be of no interest. She wasn’t making any demonstrable admissions against interest. She also arranged for a very successful scrub of her internet trail, so let’s just guess there was some instructive information there about what makes Chrissy tick.

              What’s of interest is that there is no corroborating evidence of her claims. None. She cannot get to first base by demonstrating that she was at all acquainted with him in 1982. Her named witnesses undermine her account. She cannot produce a character witness who paints a portrait of Kavanaugh which remotely resembles her own. She demonstrably lied about three germane matters: the dispute with her husband over her home renovations, the offer to hear her testimony in camera in California, and her fear of flying. She also sat for a silly, rigged polygraph test. She offers her marriage counselor’s notes as evidence, but the account they contain doesn’t match her account in her letter to Eshoo.

              Occam’s razor: her story is cock-and-bull.

              1. DSS – there is something very hinky about that polygraph that came out when Mitchell asked Chrissy about it. Chrissy talked about crying through all of the questions, however, there were only two questions. The correct response would have been I cried through both questions. Actually, that would have thrown off the machine, if true. Or, they gave the test several times until they got the result they wanted.

                Let me posit something to you. She writes the summary (without the correction) and takes the poly. She fails. This happens a couple of times. Keeps failing at the same point. Finally, she realizes she has to make a minor change in the written statement. Crosses out the word early, so the statement reads that it just happened in the 1980s. She goes back, takes the test, passes with flying colors.

            2. Please, please tell me what Dr. Ford had to gain by coming forward.

              WTF!? This is some Twilight Zone lunacy.

              Imagine if you will a society where people are figuratively slain by strangers lacking any apparent motive. I pray the FBI’s Behavioral Science Unit is developing a profile on this.

            3. Anonymous – as someone who has acted in and directed theatrical productions I saw techniques used by Chrissy that I have used or have asked actors to use. BTW, John Kyl was in charge of getting Kavanaugh through the nomination process, not Kellyanne.

    3. “it boiled down to a binary choice: 1. Declare Dr. Ford a per se liar.”

      But it wasn’t a binary choice and the Republicans preceded based on the assumption that what she said she thought was true despite her ever changing testimony and the fact that her witnesses didn’t agree with her. Even then there was more of an investigation and nothing of significance found there or in the other 6 investigations or thoughout Kavanaugh’s lifetime.

      You just can’t accept the fact that you didn’t prevail. You continue with a type of psychosis and if it is affecting your life should be treated.

    4. The notion she made ‘credible claims’ is true only in your imagination. Her 2012 account of the ‘incident’ differs in consequential ways from her 2018 account, all four people she lists as being present deny any knowledge of this gathering, the one piece of contemporaneous documentation (his calendar) doesn’t have her name on it or her initials (even though he recorded his social engagements that summer with abnormal regularity), and there is nothing about the patterns of residence of the individuals involved and nothing about there patterns of social life which would make it at all likely that one would meet the other. There were over 40,000 people living in Montgomery County, Md. in 1982 who were born between the beginning of 1963 and the end of 1968. You fancy she’s ‘credible’, and she cannot produce one piece of evidence that demonstrates she ever met him.

      1. What the NPCs cannot explain is how this 15 year old could go to a residence where only a total of maybe 6 people are present, and she DOESN’T EVEN KNOW WHOSE HOUSE IT IS?????????????

        Is the custom of prep school kids to break into empty houses?

        Also, inquiring minds would like to know – WHY DID SHE GO UPSTAIRS TO USE THE BATHROOM????? Did this house not have a bathroom downstairs?

      2. DSS, that nut isn’t going to be cracked with facts, logic or reason. Natacha, bettykath and others like them have buried themselves in a hole of their own making and they are trying to find the bottom to climb out.

      3. Wait a minute. Are you saying that when tRump repeated what Kellyanne told him to say right after Dr. Ford testified… that she was credible…. was just a lie? He did say it then. You’ve been watching Fox again, and that’s just their spin, which you would buy no matter what. In any event, all possible evidence should have been investigated. It wasn’t, and that was on purpose. There was no deadline to act, other than a political one, and that was prevent the American public from having input into the process. That’s why McConnell and Kavanaugh will go down in infamy.

        1. No clue to what you think you’re replying. Nothing in the dispute in question has any relevance to anything Kellyanne Conway or Donald Trump did say or did not say.

      4. Denying recalling something is not denying that something happened, and that’s a huge difference. Have you seen the FBI report? No, of course not. You are also willing to believe “contemporaneous documentation”, after he was woodshedded for a full week by Kellyanne Conway at the White House, knowing of the political agenda at work. How do you know the “documentation” was either contemporary or complete? Why were the 40+ witnesses who volunteered to be interviewed shut out? What was the rush when the seat had been vacant for well over a year? Why wasn’t Kavanaugh on the Federalist Society’s initial list of “approved judges”, and why was his name added after it was learned that he had opined that a sitting President is not subject to being subpoenaed? Republicans were determined to shove Kavanaugh onto the SCOTUS to prevent Americans from stopping them. That’s the truth and you know it.

        1. This may come as a surprise to you, Natacha, but its up to Judge Kavanaugh’s detractors to produce actual evidence. They cannot even demonstrate that Blasey was at all acquainted with Kavanaugh and the four witnesses she named denied her account.

          1. Kavanaugh was a nominee to the SCOTUS. He had the burden to prove he was worthy of a lifetime appointment to sit in judgment of some of the most-important issues facing America. Merely having the degree, law license and judicial experience isn’t enough, because if it were, Congress would not have the right to “advise and consent” set forth in the Constitution. He demonstrated, beyond any reasonable doubt, that he lacks the proper temperament of a SCOTUS Justice. He demonstrated, beyond any reasonable doubt, that he cannot be unbiased when it comes to Democrats because he falsely accused the Clintons of organizing opposition to him, without any evidence or proof. Throwing in references to the Clintons and accusing them of a political hit job tells me that the “righteous indignation” act was engineered by Kellyanne, just like all of the pivoting to say negative things about them leading up to the 2016 election. Now, Republicans are trying to trade on that for the midterms, hoping that there are people out there stupid enough to fall for it.

            1. No, Natacha, he doesn’t carry any burden of proof when he’s accused of assaulting someone there’s no indication he’s ever met.

            2. Anonymous – Associate Justice Ginsburg openly shows her hated for Trump and all things Trump. Does she not have the temperament to be on SCOTUS? And, btw, Hillary is part of #Resistance whose job it is to stop all things Trump. Yes, I think the Clintons had their hand in it.

    5. The ’40 witnesses’ are imaginary. Christine Blasey named four people. Christopher Garrett makes a fifth.

      By some accounts, the FBI got 1,400 crank calls accusing Kavanaugh of this and that. I’m sure its a fantastic use of government time to send a squad out every time some adolescent tries this:

  6. Scott Adams nailed the list of professors down cold. They have cognitive dissonance going on. Here is a blurb from him from 2016. I have bolded the parts most relevant here:

    Earlier this week listed 24 different theories that pundits have provided for why Trump won. And the list isn’t even complete. I’ve heard other explanations as well. What does it tell you when there are 24 different explanations for a thing?

    It tells you that someone just dropped a cognitive dissonance cluster bomb on the public. Heads exploded. Cognitive dissonance set in. Weird theories came out. This is the cleanest and clearest example of cognitive dissonance you will ever see. Remember it.

    So how do you explain-away Trump’s election if you think you are smart and you think you are well-informed and you think Trump is OBVIOUSLY a monster?

    You solve for that incongruity by hallucinating – literally – that Trump supporters KNOW Trump is a monster and they PREFER the monster. In this hallucination, the KKK is not a nutty fringe group but rather a symbol of how all Trump supporters must feel. (They don’t. Not even close.)

    In a rational world it would be obvious that Trump supporters include lots of brilliant and well-informed people. That fact – as obvious as it would seem – is invisible to the folks who can’t even imagine a world in which their powers of perception could be so wrong. To reconcile their world, they have to imagine all Trump supporters as defective in some moral or cognitive way, or both.

    As I often tell you, we all live in our own movies inside our heads. Humans did not evolve with the capability to understand their reality because it was not important to survival. Any illusion that keeps us alive long enough to procreate is good enough.

    That’s why the protestors live in a movie in which they are fighting against a monster called Trump and you live in a movie where you got the president you wanted for the changes you prefer. Same planet, different realities. (Adams, 2016)

    Squeeky Fromm
    Girl Reporter

  7. Are honorary degrees anything like noble prizes given to Obama? Basically worthless.

  8. The issue with Kavanaugh that demands resolution is not whether or not he sexually abused Ford, as there is only his word against hers. It has been established that there are no witnesses to this act. The issue with Kavanaugh is whether or not he lied to the Senate. He stated that, although he drank to excess on occasion, he never drank to excess often and never to the point of not remembering and/or blacking out. There are witnesses that lived with him during college and have stated that he did: drink often to excess, sometimes to the point of passing out, and that he was on occasion belligerent and aggressive physically and verbally. The issue is that given his performance exhibiting obvious political bias, arrogance, and blaming the world for his trials, is he SCOTUS material. What can be established but was shied away from is whether or not Kavanaugh is a liar. Trump is a liar and he’s President, so I guess it doesn’t matter.

    1. As the old saying goes “You when a politician is lying? Their lips are moving”. Yes it does matter, it matters if Kavanaugh lied, and it surely matters that many leftist lied repeatedly. But since no one in power can prove, and may even be interested in proving the facts, we are where we are.

    2. So the new confirmation standard is the following:
      – complete the background check.
      – hold the regular hearings.
      – if it’s likely the nominee will be confirmed, then make a false accusation that forces an investigation into one’s childhood conduct.
      – Then sit the nominee in front of an inquisition after publicly flogging him/her and require that nominee to comport themselves like the Associate Justice he/she wants to be rather than the heinous sexual predator the inquisitors characterize him/her to be.

      Gosh, that sounds perfectly reasonable. Why not use sleep deprivation as well or waterboarding? You know, to get to the truth. How about a float test?

      BTW, is the womb too far back? Maybe Kindergarten; I stole a classmates scissors and nearly got kicked out. Middle school? I stole a watch from a paper route customer’s bathroom. I see a pattern here. Maybe I inherited my behavior from my father. He spent time in prison, twice. Bank robbery was one of his crimes. My ancestors on my Dad’s side immigrated from Sweden. They had to change their name when they got here because some great-great uncle had done something wrong.

      So I think I’ve answered my own question. Every nominee is to be swabbed and a DNA/Ancestry is done. Not everyone can have noble DNA. We’ll find some skeleton in the closet and move on to the next nominee.

      1. What you say is perfectly legitimate. It is a Zen thing. You are who you are when you enter the room. Kavanaugh entered the room lying, politically biased, blaming the Clintons and Democrats, etc. Kavanaugh was somewhat unhinged. He made it the the SCOTUS because of the unholy trinity of the Presidency, Congress, and Senate, all being Republican; not on the merit of his performance.

        Regarding the ‘ambush’ routine the GOP constantly refers to; this is hypocrisy as clear as it gets. Either side will do what they do for the sake of power and not the best interests of the nation. That is the nature of a two party, polarized, oligarchy. In the end it comes down to a rigged process. There is no arguing that.

        1. “Not on the merit of his performance”, Sparky? Over 300 decisions, 97% agreed with Garland, almost none reversed on appeal, highest rating from ABA, outstanding character assessments from 100s of co-workers, peers, staff, etc.? Not on THAT performance?

          1. Issac holds no credibility. He first figures out what the left says and then molds his opinion around theirs. He has no ability to debate based on facts. He states he is an educated architect. I would expect more from him.

        2. Kavanaugh entered the room lying, politically biased, blaming the Clintons and Democrats, etc. Kavanaugh was somewhat unhinged.

          It was Judge Kavanaugh that entered the confirmation hearing and he spent 3 days with the senators showing a demeanor befitting an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court.

          It was the son, father, husband and fellow citizen of the United States that entered that Thursday inquisition prepared to go toe-to-toe with the senators that had and were still trying to convict him without due process. His demeanor on that day reflected a human being that had spent his entire adult life committed to the rule of law, who suddenly found himself in front of a firing squad in a some remote banana republic. What was/is BK’s real crime that nobody from the Left will admit? 1. He’s a Trump nominee. 2. He’s conservative. 3. He gives the court a solid, non-progressive majority. 4. He is anti-administrative state. 5. He is not a judicial activist.

  9. St. Lawrence is an institution that trafficks in arts and sciences, full stop. You’re in the company of the arts and sciences faculty, the teacher-training faculty, the law faculty, the social work faculty, you’re pretty much in the company of jerks. The same applies to the salaried employees in the office of the president, the provost, the dean of students, the admissions director, and the head flack. Everyone else is there for the bennies and is willing to put up with the jerks. Trustees could do something about this, but they’re useless.

    The question is two fold: why have our law codes effectively assigned the task of sorting the labor market to jerks? And why does corporate law allow institutional employees (or, rather, the jerks among them) to turn public and legacy institutions into their personal sandboxes?

  10. Off topic, Paul Krugman writes his Opinion about the Republicants. The economics are obvious to all, even the commentariat here…

  11. How many did that involve to get that passed. I’m thinking of Evergreen in Washington and their last fiasco which cost them

    The protesters were 3.8 Percent of the student body and caused the administration to cave. The administration then had shell out a bunch of money on the lawsuit. And lost a huge chunk of their student body.

  12. I don’t understand why anyone would care if a honorary degree were revoked. I would fight to the ends of the earth if anyone tried to revoke the degrees that I busted my butt to earn, but an honorary one? Let them stuff it.

  13. It would be better if alum started voting with their money. It is always fascinating to see how the administration dances to the tune of the piper.

    1. Most of the alumni who are interested in getting involved are institutional boosters who are aghast that you might sully the reputation of their alma mater (and reduce the marketability of their degree). And, of course, corporation law restricts and corrupts alumni participation.

      It would be better if trustees were of a modest number (say, nine), were elected by resident alumni, and the elections were conducted by the secretary of state or state board of elections via postal ballot (with a simple procedure for candidate registration). Away with self-regenerating boards, with nominating committees, with hopelessly unwieldy boards. It would be better if trustees had to take an oath of office which mandated they acknowledge their responsibility for the academic integrity of the school. It would be better if state law instituted mandatory retirement for faculty, limited tenure to older faculty, and made plain that the trustees could buy out the contract of any employee at their discretion.

      It would be better. You’d still get a lot of goofballs on the board jonesing for the approval of faculty and indifferent to anything but the budget and the athletic program. It’s the rancid culture of our time.

        1. And it’s incorporated under New York State law. The rubrics of corporate governance are defined by statute.

  14. Susan should burn the degree and post it on YT. She’s a princess in my book.

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