Thursday, October 31, 2013

Ghosts

Happy Halloween y'all!

I wanted to ponder the ghostliness of the scamblogger movement because it is a frequent point of contention for boomers and a point of attack for deans and professors.  As we all know, a few professors have tried to "out" scambloggers in an effort to silence them.

The boomer/professor argument generally seems to go something like this: "If you can't sign your name to something, your argument is not legitimate."  They stand by this no matter how excellent the writing and analysis posted by a scamblogger.  It is the classic ad hominem attack of "you're too yellow for me to bother listening to."  It also allows the scammers to avoid direct discussion of the overwhelming facts that have now exposed the law school scam.

Furthermore, stories of "outing" a scamblogger always surface online, and it serves as a warning shot to anyone else who may dare to cast a stone at the ivory tower.  The parallels to other protest movements and battles between the classes throughout history cannot be clearer.  The rich professors desperately try to cling to their wealth and power and to snuff out any prole who gets out of line.

Of course, it also turns those professors into some of the most know and most hated people on the law school scam circuit (see Prof. Leiter).  For some, it becomes the most defining characteristic of their online presence.

Needless to say, when a professor values knowing the identity of a critic over the content of his criticism, this obsession exposes the shallowness of her understanding of the problems facing law schools and the legal profession.  The idea that the identity of a writer is more important than what he writes has long plagued academia.  Whether it be a liberal arts paper or a work of literary fiction -- or a law review article -- most professors judge quality based on the CV of the author and not based on what she says.  So, it makes sense that this logic translates to the online discussions about the major problems associated with law schools and the legal profession.

Interestingly, these professors seem to have total ignorance (or feigned ignorance) toward the role that anonymous dissent has played in the development of democracies around the world, including here in America.  They also discount the reasons behind the anonymity of the majority of scambloggers, again feigning ignorance toward the risks that many of us take by perpetuating the message that law school is a scam.

Those scambloggers who are not lucky enough to be self-employed or protected by tenure face other retribution by old-school boomers and plain old nasty bosses who have financial ties to the law school industrial complex.  Also, scambloggers may face retribution by judges, bar association members, and a number of other people who just want to maintain the status quo.  While I often think that many people over-estimate the fear of retribution -- it is a legitimate fear.  (Then again, I say, "fear not!"  There isn't much more that the powers-that-be can do to screw us further.)

So, on this Halloween, I wish to acknowledge all of the ghosts, ghouls, and goblins of the scamblog movement by saying, well, "trick-or-treat!"  The free-falling applications and the zombie-schools -- those that should be dead already but still lumber along -- are attributable in large part to scambloggers and the plaintiffs and lawyers associated with the highly-publicized scam-suits.

32 comments:

  1. Well said. Personally, I laugh at how butthurt these LawProfs get over the fact that the scambloggers generally prefer to remain anonymous. They themselves cast stones from behind tenure, which is the Versaille of the educational world, yet in their hypocrisy castigate others for not laying their lives bare becuase, well, they can't afford themselves of the protections and benefits of Versaille. "Why do you peasants refuse to make yourselves more easily identifiable!??!" The scambloggy Jean Valjeans just need to STFU, thanks, now, back to Nietzsche.

    It's easy to sign your name to soemthing when there are no personal consequences for you - plus, they get paid to plaster their name everywhere and all over everything, like some sort of academic gang tag.

    It's not about the substance of the arguments, as stated in the post. It is about having the temerity to challenge the "good ol' boys club," and the squashing of dissent. History has borne this pattern out time and time again. You would think LawProfs would "get it" more than most, but they are only human after all, dispite their cerebral protestations to the contrary.







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    1. "academic gang tags" ... haha that's great

      What do you say we paint over the academic graffiti and focus on statutes, decisions and facts?

      Delete
  2. There is a difference between anonymously making a general attack on law schools, and anonymously making a personal attack on an individual. It seems appropriate for someone who makes an attack on an individual to sign their name. I have seen some postings mocking the CVs of individual professors, for example, which are done anonymously.

    I am not referring to any posts you in particular have made Adam B, and indeed you have more or less signed your name to your posts.

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    1. You can consider this poster free to mock any CV in any forum at any time. Those precious CV's, dripping with condescension and phony "prestige," were the pretext for raising tuitions into the stratosphere, upon which horrifying debt payments brought the students crashing to earth.

      Of course, I never mock obesity, bad hair, or affected speech, even in the worst scammers. Those are factors that don't appear to affect the price of graduate education.

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    2. The problem is that it's hard to distinguish between a personal attack and a wider critique when you are arguing against the very people who are benefiting from something you think is wrong. Is saying that a law professor is overpaid or needs to teach more classes a personal attack on that professor, or a wider critique of law faculty salaries and workloads?

      Once you break the anonymity seal it's hard to put it back in the bottle, and you start to get self-proclaimed arbiters of the internet exposing people who they think are behaving uncivilly. But if they don't think there is any value in what the scambloggers say generally, then it really isn't a problem if their anonymous speech is chilled.

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  3. My Google account is being stupid. Anyway, I do not recall any personal attacks. Granted, I have been busy. Rather, I remember posters mocking CVs and publications of professors that those professors promoted themselves. It seems like fair game to mock and criticize.

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    1. And I think there's a professor who boasted about his earth-shattering research, yet found it beneath him to post a CV at his website. Can I beg for permission to mock the pretension of that professor? Perhaps his academic superiors may find that amusing?

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    2. This is Adam B, by the way.  I think that a person, who is essentially a glorified liberal arts author, must face any criticism from other academics or even from us lowly lawyers.  If you are a writer, you cannot hide behind "professional courtesy" when someone criticizes your work.  If I wrote a horrendous appellate brief and lost a big case, I would get criticized by everyone, and rightly so, for doing a terrible job and signing my name to crap.  If bosses or clients read about my failure and commented on it, that is my problem based on the nature of my profession.  I would not feel entitled to scold my critics.

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  4. It appears that nothing terrifies the academic impostors more than anonymous posts. So common sense dictates that we continue to make anonymous posts. That reasoning is sound, is it not?

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  5. Happy H'ween to everyone.

    Watch for these costumes: the Chicago SS officer, the Wisconsin witch, a few Hofstra hogs, and the George Washington zombie. When they come to your door, don't give them candy. Serve them papers instead.

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  6. This post and many others assume professors are successful. Not in my book. They are losers who were never capable of doing the hard work of a successful, hard working lawyer. They are lawyers who hide out in academia for a career. Are they
    to be admired by anybody but young students? They accomplish nothing with their lives. They sit on their fat rear ends, capable of contributing to society but too lazy to do so. And their incomes are barely moderate based on their own self inflated egos.

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  7. these scamming filth deserve every attack anyone can make upon them, anonymous or otherwise.

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  8. I have to agree with Duped, supra.

    Professors have nothing to lose and everything to gain by signing their name, so long as they don't veer into racism, sexism or other taboo topics. LawProfs, from Leiter to Leong, can write literally whatever fucking, insulting garbage they want and they won't get fired. Leiter went out of his way to meddle with a small-firm lawyer who dared - DARED - to write him a one-line email that he deemed insolent.

    The scambloggers, by and large, may face adverse consequences for their speech. If I signed my name to the comments I post here, there's a fear I would risk my reputation and employment status. Not because what I say is wrong, but because the broader legal community, to the extent it knows, would rather side with the institutionalized bastards at the law schools than the plebians who are speaking out against power. If scambloggers and JD Underground posters had to use their real names, the movement would be a fraction of what it is.

    Leiter and company know this. They know that if everyone is forced to use real names, the discourse moves to the center and towards a retention of the status quo.

    Anonymity is our friend. Let truth give our words credibility and continue to speak anonymously as much as possible.

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    1. Don't exaggerate the power of the academic parasites. No one is going to be "forced " to do anything. The whining from Nietzsche and company is evidence of a huge power deficit on their part. The one exception they trumpet over and over again, the Auto-Admit case, had nothing to do with professors or the reform movement.

      So if we stick to business and question or mock their academic pretensions, we have nothing to fear from those weak, impotent, pathetic professors. Just ignore their grandiose demands.

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    2. Leiter attacked a small firm lawyer? Why? Any links you can send me to. As a small firm lawyer myself, I would love to go against somebody like Leiter if he dared to take me on. I would have nothing to lose and everything to gain. He would have nothing to gain and everything to lose. Besides, he is an academic. I doubt he could successfully take me on in court.

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    3. It was some young attorney from a firm in Sin City, Nevada. I do remember that much. Nietzsche may have taken it down. That exchange damaged his image in a huge way, and I don't think he can ever recover from it.

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    4. Brian is smart enough not to argue against you in court. I'm sure he has a few remaining friends, and one of them might be ready for a court case.

      I'm eager to read about that case. You argue with Brian on some website, he "reports" you to your boss, and you sue him for interference with your business. You'd better know the statutes and cases inside and out before you try that, though.

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    5. Here it is

      http://leiterlawschool.typepad.com/leiter/2013/03/we-get-mail-thomas-r-grover-esq-edition.html

      I would be careful not to confuse his reputation on scam blogs with his reputation in the rest of the world.

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  9. Does it ever occur to law schools that if they didn't screw over most of their students, there wouldn't be so many enraged, embittered graduates trying to take them down? Seriously, maybe only screw over 10 or 20% of your students, and you can have a sustainable business model.

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    1. lol! He's right.

      If they weren't so greedy, the business model would go on for another 50 years. If they hadn't raised tuition so much, then people wouldn't be so completely screwed. They could afford to live taking other jobs they found, aside from the legal ones if they couldn't land one, and live with their loan debt.

      If the schools genuinely tried to help the bottom 95-90% of the class instead of token CSO's, then students might not feel so betrayed.

      Is that asking too much, really?

      A viable business model probably does "only" fuck over 10-20% of its customers and even then not that badly because they don't want bad vocal press.

      Law schools are like Madoff. Completely slash-and-burn scam. Kill everyone, no exceptions. He'll go down in history as the worst of the Jew scammers. Ever. Because his greed was just so much greater.

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    2. Sustainability isn't going to pay for daddy's summer home at the lake.

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  10. Too much implication and hide and seek in the OP.

    If you want to write about something just come out and say it.

    You cannot have it both ways.

    oh, I forgot that it is all free and free is what you get.

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    1. Will someone please make sure to water 5:57 and make sure it gets proper sunlight?

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    2. I just noticed how pathetic the post at 5:57 was. If these characters are afraid to say what they mean, how can they expect anyone to care about what they say? And how can they pretend to be daring dissenters when they don't even know what they think?

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  11. Samizdat

    The people who write here are in some ways at risk in the same way that those who produced samizdat were in the Soviet Union. Ostracism, harassment, black balling etc can be as economically damaging as time in the gulag.

    It amuses me, but at the same time infuriates me, that the law professoriate overwhelmingly claims to be on the left, but like any nomenklatura, from Louis XIV's parasite nobles to Stalin's commissars, it reacts with fury to any efforts to point out that they are literally economically destroying tens of thousands of young peoples' lives every year.

    They're not revolutionaries, they're life-wrecking parasites who react to the truth about themselves the same way a vampire reacts to sunlight.

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    1. Great comment. Thank you.

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  12. I think that it's hardly surprising that law professors would value the identity (and the associated credientials) of a critic rather than address the criticism. This is really what the "assessment" of most legal scholarship is about and law professors learned on law review editorial boards a long time ago that an article by a tier-14 professor was always worthy of publication and not because of the content. The legal academic reflex is to always want to know the academic pedigree of the person making a statement as the person's CV will determine whether or not the statement has any value. Just as the idea of having their next article anonymously peer-reviewed would throw most legal academics into the fear-pit, the idea of addressing anyone's arguments when their CV is unknown is equally and highly disorienting The loud demand from some legal academics to out the scambloggers is an anger-driven reaction of fear and frustration; fear of the unknown credentials and frustration of not being able to attack those credentials. Attacking credentials rather than arguments is sadly where some academics, especially some legal academics, feel safest.



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    1. "an anger-driven reaction of fear and frustration"

      We can see some of that where the prawfs hang out, and it's funny to watch them trying to persuade each other how righteous they are. My advice to anyone who wants it is to just enjoy their fear and frustration. It's a sign that our movement is strong and getting stronger.

      And ignore their anger. They've been browbeating their students for three generations, and think they can start using the Internet to browbeat anyone they want. That's not how it works, and you've got to stand up to them. They tend to use words such as "harass" or "defame" out of context and in erroneous ways. Just throw it back in their pudgy faces. Use the words "deception" and "greed" and "debt" and "bondage" and "suicide" to disarm them once and forever.

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    2. "a tier-14 professor"

      That's downright funny. I do want to see that. For now, I assume that means "a top-14 professor."

      Your comment was great, by the way.

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    3. I'm @4:10.

      Thanks.

      Yes, that tier-14 was probably a freudian slip. If the law school isn't tier 1, then why not tier 14? The US News Rankings have skipped Tier 2 since they started ranking law schools. For many years, the list said "First Tier" and listed 100 law schools. The next tier was "Third Tier." Now, I believe that they just say "Top 100" then "Third Tier."

      Having no second tier just because we say there's no second tier was just another fantasy to peddle to prospective law students.

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    4. all academia in this country is bull anyway. to get tenure, one must 'produce' work that those in teh business community, boards of trustees, etc. promote--always self-serving.
      Anyone speaking truth-to-power is branded an extremist and jettisoned from academia. Professors are keenly aware of this--hence, the self-serving fantasy world they create and the obsession with CVs vs. academic work targeted toward improving society.

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