Tuesday, January 04, 2022

Under the AAUP definition of academic freedom, "extramural" speech by faculty is protected speech that cannot be sanctioned by a university employer.  Yet even the First Amendment right of public sector employees to free speech can be outweighed by the employer's interest in running its workplace efficiently and without excessive disruption (the "Pickering test").  One can imagine a court being sympathetic to a private university's invocation of similar reasoning.
"the employer's interest in running its workplace efficiently and without excessive disruption"
Workplace efficiency: the definition of the neoliberal academy.  By that logic U. Penn could have fired Du Bois for being uppity, MIT could've fired Chomsky, and teach-ins would have been career suicide.

I'm a stronger defender of academic freedom than Brian Leiter. I guess I've always assumed that.

Leiter: "Soon the only students who can safely take her classes at Penn will be Jews and WASPs."

New language from him. But student safety isn't the issue. The issue is the risk of lawsuits.
---

Leiter's still reading me. He deletes my comments, but I troll him by email now and again. The last time he said he was going to block my address but he hasn't, yet. I have contempt for a lot of people. I hate a lot of people. But he's too smart and his conflicts are too broad for me not to like him. People are either interesting or not. And a world of boring people I agree with is my definition of Hell.
The Posners I hate. Their minds are as two dimensional as their ideas. 
I love the Ivory tower. I love the bubble. It has its place.

No comments: