This giant story was picked up on 6/10 by Brian Leiter as it broke, and I (his biggest critic) will be the first to give him complete respect for posting it on his blog.
According to documents unearthed in a month-long search of public records, NYU Law School has created an array of nonprofits to funnel money into lavish perks for its professors. The money has been used by professors to buy multi-million dollar brownstones and condos in Manhattan and Brooklyn with portions of some loans forgiven over time. In some cases, even the interest charged on the loans has been reimbursed.Some of the more vomit-inducing facts include:
. . . on December 9, 2004, the NYU School of Law Foundation made a $2,850,000 mortgage loan to one of its law professors, Richard (Rick) Pildes to purchase a 6 room, 3 ½ bath, luxury condo with views of the Hudson River.The article continues:
That deal followed an earlier one with Pildes in 2001. On January 30, 2001, the NYU School of Law Recruitment Assistance Corporation gave a $200,000 mortgage loan to Pildes and magically made him a tenant in common with the nonprofit in a brownstone on West 10th Street. On October 29, 2004, the same nonprofit bought back Pildes’ 49 percent interest in the West 10th Street brownstone for $3,000,000, according to the public record it filed with New York City, even paying $42,000 in transfer taxes.
So let me get that straight. The law school gave Pildes a $200K mortgage to buy a share of a house, then bought the same house back from him three years later for $3MM? What is that, like $1MM per year profit under the table for this "professor", paid by the law school? And of course, this
Pildes said he was out of the country and couldn’t access the records to provide greater detail.
Er, how about using your f**king brain? You know, the same one that can stand in front of a class and reel off the irrelevant and intricate facts of countless first-year cases each year without even looking at the book? But somehow you can't recall any kickbacks or large brown envelopes stuffed full of cash from a recent house purchase? Oh, sorry, I forgot - he's a law professor. Stuff that happens in the real world confuses them...but strangely always seems to financially benefit them...
According to the article, Pildes is something of a, well, a piece of shit:
Pildes has had at least one high profile involvement with Wall Street. In 2008, Pildes filed an Amicus Curiae (friend of the court) brief with the U.S. Supreme Court on behalf of seven former Commissioners of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The brief was to defend placing a newly created Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) under the jurisdiction of the SEC following the scandals at Enron, Worldcom and a host of other companies. Pildes told the court that the SEC and self-regulatory agencies “have collectively succeeded in protecting the integrity of U.S. markets.” Just months after this brief was filed, Wall Street collapsed under the weight of its own corruption and the ineptitude of its regulators.Actually, no. After reading that, he's a giant c**t, the kind that fucked the economy and messed up an entire generation. Stealing a luxury house in NYC on the backs of students is low on the list of his crimes and cover-ups. But it's not just him.
Anna Deavere Smith, the actress, has a Masters of Fine Arts degree from the American Conservatory Theatre, according to her profile at NYU. In addition to being a Professor at the NYU Tisch School of the Arts, she is listed on the faculty page at the NYU Law School. That status apparently qualified her to receive a $1 million mortgage on a property on N. Moore Street in Manhattan from the NYU School of Law Faculty Retention Assistance Corporation on May 23, 2001.An actress? On the law school faculty?
On February 2, 1999, law professor Noel Cunningham and his partner, adjunct professor Laura Cunningham, received a $1.4 million mortgage for a brownstone in the Park Slope section of Brooklyn. The loan went to $1.5 million 11 months later. The nonprofit that arranged the deal was the NYU School of Law Faculty Retention Assistance Corporation. Noel Cunningham had already been a law professor at the school for 24 years, suggesting retention was not an issue.The article goes on and on and on.
Brian, nice job. Considering the fact that you highlighted this article before we did, you deserve some credit.
But a note to our readers - if you see something, say something! We should be picking up on this FIRST, not last. You have our email addresses. Or just post a comment bringing it to our attention, because there are plenty of the writers here who peruse the comments very regularly and who can jump on stories like this.
When big news breaks on 6/10, we need to be reporting it on 6/10, not 6/11 or 6/12 or 6/13...