Chancellor Charles W. Sorensen Vigilant Against Threat of Satire, Figurative Speech, Hurt Feelings

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33 Responses

  1. Patrick says:

    We have an "Academia" tag already, and I guarantee you without reading them every single post under that tag concerns a twit.

  2. Ken says:

    But who is going to go apply the Academia tag to all the posts?

    I say we make Jesse or Brian do it.

  3. TJIC says:

    "stop hiring lawyers out of the back of a bait shop. "


  4. David says:

    “Assistant Professor of Western Hegemony And Hurt Feelings Studies”

    You are so on a roll this month.

  5. Ken says:

    Actually, "undernourished pussywillows" was the part that I enjoyed writing most. But thanks.

  6. TJIC says:

    > The obligatory “we believe in freedom of expression” paragraph in the standard defend-our-censorship communique is simply embarrassing.

    This is one thing I loved ("loved") at my sophisticated snooty college campus: the obligatory leftist "we support free speech – absolutely! without fail! – but…"

    "But" my ass.

    You do or you don't.

    If you support free speech EXCEPT for speech you don't like and thus redefine as not valid, then you don't support free speech at all.

    C.f. "I support the rights of everyone to be free of violence based on race or religion…except that money-grubbing un-German Jews don't count…."

  7. Ken says:

    Quite. "We respect freedom of expression, but . . . " is the college administrator's version of "I don't have anything against colored people per se, but . . . . "

  8. Andrew T says:

    As a counterpoint, what do you think of the UC Berkeley official reaction to a "diversity bake sale" event:

    I liked it – it seemed to me to successfully make the distinction between condemning speech and censuring it. What do you think?

  9. Ken says:

    Actually drafting a post about it now, Andrew. Thanks for pointing out that link.

  10. Patrick says:

    The comments at the Daily Cal link are more interesting than what the Chancellor has to say, though I commend him for restraining his natural urge to censor.

  11. C. S. P. Schofield says:

    The solution to your tags problem is to have a tag "Non-twits in Academia". It won't come up very often.

    As for the Chancellor; Academics become Chancellors, Deans, Provosts, and even College Presidents because although they have spent their lives pursuing the merit badges of scholars and teachers, they have no discernable talent for either task. They are the classic "Intellectuals"; people who want to be regarded as men of intellect without having any real interest in using their intelligence.

  12. Ken says:

    C.S.P., that's exactly how I got to be general counsel of a law firm.

  13. deadcenter says:

    his last paragraph reminded me of this quote:

    Of all tyrannies, a tyranny exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron's cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end, for they do so with the approval of their own conscience. – C. S. Lewis

  14. Mike says:

    When I was younger, you could go to places in Wisconsin were a guy would pump your gas, fill your minnow bucket and serve you a burger and fries all without washing his hands between tasks. I never thought to ask if he had a lawyer in the back!

    There was one place, in the Dells, where they would put a minnow in your beer. The trick was to get the minnow to go down your throat head first. Otherwise it would keep trying to swim back into the glass.

    Being a college student was so much more fun than working for a living.

  15. NLP says:

    The least you could have done was provide a link to your post about Judge William Downes. His order regarding William Ayers is a breath of life to the 1st Amendment, particularly on college campuses. I wish it could be required reading.

    "Mr. Ayers is a citizen of the United States who wishes to speak, and he need not offer any more justification than that.”

  16. Xenocles says:

    His argument is that both of the posters were threatening? I could maybe in some strange world understand the Firefly one. But the facism one is explicitly a denunciation of violence! Who are these people?

  17. PLW says:

    CSPS- Academic's don't seem any more twittish to me than any other group of people. And for the record, the only academic I see here is the dude who posted the Mal poster. I guess you could call the Chancellor an academic, but I'd refer to to him as a former academic, turned bureaucrat.

  18. C. S. P. Schofield says:

    PLW; An academic is one who inhabits Academia. By definition, the chancellor fits that definition. Academics aren't all of one type; there are scholars, teachers, and drones, to name just three. The chancellor may have been a scholar at one point in his career, and also a teacher, but his behavior shows that he has devolved into a drone. And a fairly stupid one at that.

    Ken, if you are saying that you became general council of a law firm because you didn't like actually doing any mental work, I don't believe you. Your work here shows all the signs of somebody who compulsively uses him mind, even when it would be easier not to.

  19. VPJ says:

    To paraphrase Ken from this post (partly because he writes pretty good, but mostly because I suck at it)…did Chancellor Sorenson get his Ph.D. in a box of wind chimes and dreamcatchers?

  20. Laura K says:

    In my experience, usually large Universities ignore the humanities or station them right under the lid of the 'budget cuts' commode before eating several pounds of chilli, popcorn and emetics…This idiot is following the later strategy, I guess, and using the Constitution as toilet paper to do so.

  21. C. S. P. Schofield says:


    The chancellor undoubtedly got his doctorate the way 9 out of 10 PhDs get theirs, by writing a dissertation that argued minor points of minutia with large words, in the guise of producing "new" thinking on a subject that two thirds of the general populace could not possibly care less about.

    This is why so many academics are so resistant to engaging the real world; they know that they are a luxury good and are deathly afraid that the people who ultimately pay the bills are going to find out.

    My Father is a PhD in the History of Science and Technology, and spent much of his career trying to impress his students and colleagues with the idea that, since they were a luxury, the very least they owed the society that afforded them was published research. And you would not believe how much resistance he encountered.

  22. Jenny says:

    I think this post is the most beautiful thing I've read all week.
    Thank you. :)

  23. Amy Alkon says:

    Bait shop and "Chicago Manual of Style For Censorious Dipshits" — besides being right on with this post, you made me snort my tea. Hilarious.

  24. Heather says:

    There's a special hell for censorship-apologizing, rule-of-law-obscuring, equivocating, worthless bureaucrats.

    (FYI: it's Fillion)

  25. NLP says:

    I notice that the Flathead Beacon Police Blotter (which is always excellent reading) has an item regarding a man who called the police to complain that someone was calling him names. He was informed that, in fact, name-calling is not a crime.

    I suspect that a lot of college students are going to be very confused when they graduate and suddenly have to deal with the real world. A pity that more colleges aren't doing a better job of preparing students for what is to come.

  26. VPJ says:


    …writing a dissertation that argued minor points of minutia with large words, in the guise of producing “new” thinking on a subject that two thirds of the general populace could not possibly care less about.

    So pretty much a box of wind chimes and dreamcatchers, then.

    Hopefully there's at least a smattering of crunchy caramel-coated popcorn with some peanutty goodness, as well.

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