Tuesday, September 09, 2014
Rile-O-Meter Still Low
I am still struggling to get my rile back. I think it's the fault of the new dean. One has the distinct impression that his deanship is not 100% focused on "what do I do to extend my deanship." I guess I should not complain but I do miss being riled. It makes me realize that an old blog about the benefits of having an interim dean missed the point. Not the whole point but there is another way to have a dean who will actually put his or her self interest aside -- hire an old dean. A Dean at the end of his or her career is like an interim dean -- no need to worry about anything other than the school. I guess a term limit dean would work too. On the other hand, an old dean has seen it all.
I am not riled but disenchanted by the data on scholarship my coauthor and I have turned up. A few things stand out. First there is a statistically significant correlation between both the rank of the review and the rank of the school from which the author graduated and the number citations by other scholars. The good news is there is no significant correlation between judicial cites and either of those. Courts, to my surprise, don't care all that much about institutional authority. There is, though, a bad side to this. They also don't care much about what law professors have to say. Citations to legal scholarship are not rare but they are almost never for the analysis or the proposals found in law review articles. Instead they are for things like:"this section of the UCC has 4 subsections." or "12 states have laws against this." Yes, mainly they lift facts from even the fanciest articles. It's hardly worth the $300 million a year spent on legal scholarship. That, btw, is a very conservative estimate. It does not account of the costs of running reviews, mailings, postage, time, etc. What a terrible waste.
I guess the 300 million plus a year for legal scholarship does rile me not just because the scholarship so rarely relied on in a meaningful way but because so much if it is not scholarship at all -- more like extended op-ed pieces.
I have been riled for a long time about the absurd "we will hire whomever you are sleeping with" policy at UF. I have been told it means more jobs for women -- a feminist thing. Huh. I do not know the gender breakdown on trailing spouses but, if it is to hire women, what an insult to feminists -- hiring women not because of who they are but because they hooked up with the "right" men. My rile on this has faded mainly because I have had my say.
I am kind of riled by Obama being such a dud and those who somehow think the Ravens are heroic for cutting Ray Rice once they saw the video. The relevance of the video is lost on me other than to suggest that battered women should start wearing those little cameras because that appears to be what it takes to get some action.
Any law professor who utters anything about academic freedom could rile me. I have never seen a freedom so infrequently used.
I am sure there are things I should be riled about but since I cut off all information coming out of the months the law school's biggest agitators and least accurate people, the rile-o-meter has been very low.