Thursday, October 29, 2015
Dean is Rile Killer
Yep, I've got to face it. I have not much more to say about class bias in the legal academy In fact, I am drinking the Kool-Aid. It's a good thing to have class bias in the legal education since it keeps a certain number of people with a massive sense of entitlement spending their time having no impact on any thing that matters.
And, I have to face something else. When our last full time dean departed, a breath of fresh air blew through the law school -- first in the form of a first rate acting dean and then in hiring a permanent dean who is smart, a quick study, and, as best I can tell, confident enough to at least try to do the right things even if it ruffles some feathers. I am sure she will irritate me at times but I am willing to bet the number of side deals and scams will dwindle and that when she is done, UF will stand taller.
So where does that leave me? I got so much out of bitching and being rile free has taken it away. My friend Eric Fink says it's not worth writing something if it does not piss off someone. So here I am writing. Let me take a stab at some mini bitching in hopes that someone will be a least a little annoyed.
1. You probably know that most law professor are "liberals." Liberals mind you, not left. There is a ocean of difference. You know what they like to do with money for scholarships. Go out and compete for students with the highest LSAT scores. Rich or poor, we don't care as long as that number is helps the rank of the school. Have a good number that does nothing for our ranking and you are too poor to afford law school. Tough. If you don't make us liberals look good when rankings season is bloom, take a hike. (I really appreciate those Deans and University Presidents who have created funds strictly for people who would not be in school without help.)
2. A couple of weeks ago an article I wrote with Amy Mashburn came out. It was the one showing that citations of law review articles were correlated with the rank of the publication, the rank of the school of the author, and the rank of the school from which the author received a JD degree. We also discovered a shocking lack of reliance by courts and other scholars. That's all old news. We were very polite when people were negative (actually most were positive) but some comments just seemed stupid. How about the one that said our conclusions should not be trusted because we did not use a random sample of law reviews. Yes, no random sample. No instead we selected a sample of articles that was most likely to disprove the hypothesis that legal scholarship was not reaching people. But thanks for your thoughtful comment.
3. The rules in my fantasy league. How screwed up is this. Say you've got at QB Cam Newton. He goes 20 for 40 and 350 yards and 2 TDs but throws 2 picks, one a pick six. The picks do not count against you. So the QBs performance is distorted. In fact, he could throw 10 picks and you get the same credit as someone with a QB who threw no picks. Crazy.