May 1, 2012

The NYT reports that "officials involved" in hiring Elizabeth Warren "all said that she was hired because she was an outstanding teacher, and that her lineage was either not discussed or not a factor."

What would you expect them to say?
“To suggest that she needed some special advantage to be hired here or anywhere is just silly,” said Jay Westbrook, chairman of business law at the University of Texas.
But you see, in faculty hiring, the question isn't whether this particular candidate is good enough. The question is why does this person with excellent credentials get selected from the pool of applicants who all have excellent credentials? Why did Warren move up the ranks of the law schools the way she did?

Her identification as a member of a minority group in the Association of American Law Schools directory would help. Why are the schools reticent about saying that they consider minority status a plus factor in hiring? Why aren't they out-and-proud about diversity? Law schools have fought for the proposition that diversity is a compelling state interest, justifying racial discrimination.

For Professor Westbrook to scoff that it's "just silly" to "suggest that [Warren] needed some special advantage" is to clumsily insult all the people who have gotten hired (or admitted as students) because of the diversity efforts of law schools. Those other people needed some special advantage, but oh, no, not her.

Is this reticence about the decency of affirmative action happening here because they want to help Warren in her Senate race? Is it because if she didn't really have that factor going for her but the schools used it, then... well... who, really, is hurt? Who was the next person in that pool of applicants? No one knows. Look away.

Hey, but who else might be cheating, claiming minority status that's not really true? Now, now, you're not supposed to think about that. It's quite unseemly, isn't it? Impolite.

115 comments:

Bob Ellison said...

Oh, Professor, you are so harsh.

Will it all come crashing down now? No, it won't.

Scott M said...

If Professor Westbrook is going to scoff that it's "just silly" to "suggest that [Warren] needed some special advantage" is to clumsily insult all the people who have gotten hired (or admitted as students) because of the diversity efforts of law schools. Those other people needed some special advantage, but oh, no, not her.

EXACTLY my thoughts last night while reading up on this story. Any shying away from affirmative action practices or outcomes in this case impinges on ALL others of the type.

drozz said...

the issue isn't harvard's hiring procedures, hte issue is warren's lack of integrity by claiming something she has no right to in order to gain employment.

anything peripheral is misdirection.

Jay said...

The NYT reports that "officials involved" in hiring Elizabeth Warren "all said that she was hired because she was an outstanding teacher, and that her lineage was either not discussed or not a factor."


In other words, the NYT rushes to defend the leftists candidate by attacking an argument nobody is making.

The Brown campaign, or any Republican, is not saying she was hired due to AA, or she got special treatment for pretending to be an Indian.

They're pointing out the inconsistency & the lack of evidence for her claims.

Libruals can't grasp that.

Hence you get silly stories in the NYT.

Matthew Sablan said...

"Either not discussed or not a factor."

Ah, so it could have been discussed, or not a factor; or it could have been a factor, but not discussed.

That's a sneaky little either/or there.

So, if it WAS discussed, it was not a factor. If it was NOT discussed, it was a factor. Was there a wink and a nod?

Oh, NYT, this is why you edit.

DCS said...

The dirty little secret of liberals. They believe minorities are inferior and need special help. They also hate gay people. Why do you think they like the term "teabagger" when deriding the Tea Party.

David said...

It ain't gonna fly NYT. As Drozz said, the issue is her integrity.

Now the integrity of the hiring process is open to question too.

They are lying, plain and simple.

Astro said...

I once worked for a private company that did some work for the federal government. A racially diverse workforce was important to the company so as not to be excluded from the bidding process. One day a bunch of senior white guys were all laid-off from that company, including me. I wonder now if I had (legitimately) claimed minority status due to my 1/32nd Native American heritage on my employment records, whether I would have avoided being laid off.

The Crack Emcee said...

Now, now, you're not supposed to think about that. It's quite unseemly, isn't it? Impolite.

Well, well, well. Welcome to the club.

Now, about Mitt Romney and the planet Kolab,...

edutcher said...

You're awful purty when you're impolite.

But, yeah, clearly this is something that's going to be a point in Brown's campaign.

She's already up a leg being a woman. If she's using a claim of being 1/10000 Cherokee, too, that's gonna rankle an awful lot of voters.

Maybe not enough to get them to vote for Brown in and of itself, but these things add up.

Ann Althouse said...

Why did Warren move up the ranks of the law schools the way she did?

Professor, are you saying she's a fun date, too?

Balfegor said...

If Professor Westbrook is going to scoff that it's "just silly" to "suggest that [Warren] needed some special advantage" is to clumsily insult all the people who have gotten hired (or admitted as students) because of the diversity efforts of law schools.

Well, it's because Westbrook (like pretty much everyone else, I suspect) knows perfectly well what the stigma of affirmative action is. It's the same stigma that attaches when a student gets into a prestigious college right after his father donates a million dollars to the school -- the inevitable suspicion that without the plus factor, he just wouldn't have measured up.

I'd consider it embarassing myself, if I discovered that I'd been the beneficiary of race preferences in hiring, admissions, promotion, etc. Doesn't mean I wouldn't take the advantage (if I had the opportunity for gross nepotism, I'd leap on that too). Just that I'd feel a bit of shame about it afterwards. Fortunately for my self-respect, people of my race are overrepresented (by degrees ranging from slightly to massively) everywhere I've gone, so my race has probably made no difference at all. And if it has, if anything, it has only raised the bar for me.

Hoosier Daddy said...

I thought I read somewhere she is claiming 1/32 part Cherokee? Any geneologists out there that can explain how you can get that kind of heriditary breakdown?

Original Mike said...

"...that her lineage was either not discussed or not a factor"

I've been on admissions committees and faculty search committees. If her minority status was known to the search committees (and I don't know that it was), this statement is ridiculous. As Althouse says:

"in faculty hiring, the question isn't whether this particular candidate is good enough. The question is why does this person with excellent credentials get selected from the pool of applicants who all have excellent credentials?"

Departments are under pressure from school administrations to increase "diversity". Liberal faculty members believe in "diversity". Of course her "status" was discussed. Of course it was a factor.

dreams said...

"Hey, but who else might be cheating, claiming minority status that's not really true? Now, now, you're not supposed to think about that. It's quite unseemly, isn't it? Impolite."

I'm sure they're out there and I'm pretty sure most of them are liberals.

Original Mike said...

"Why are the schools reticent about saying that they consider minority status a plus factor in hiring?"

It's simple. They are uncomfortable with the fact that other, equally qualified candidates did not get the position explicitly because they are not of a favored class. They are uncomfortable with discrimination, so they deny it.

Balfegor said...

I thought I read somewhere she is claiming 1/32 part Cherokee? Any geneologists out there that can explain how you can get that kind of heriditary breakdown?

One ancestor, 5 generations back (32=2^5) soone great-great-great-grandparent. I think.

Darrell said...

Desperately scrambling to validate Democrat Elizabeth Warren’s Native American heritage amid questions about whether she used her minority status to further her career, the Harvard Law professor’s campaign last night finally came up with what they claim is a Cherokee connection — her great-great-great-grandmother.

“She would be 1⁄32nd of Elizabeth Warren’s total ancestry,” noted genealogist Christopher Child said, referring to the candidate’s great-great-great-grandmother, O.C. Sarah Smith, who is listed on an Oklahoma marriage certificate as Cherokee. Smith is an ancestor on Warren’s mother’s side, Child said

...Child — who originally could find no Native American lineage in Warren’s family when the Herald broke the story last Friday — said he uncovered a marriage certificate at 4 p.m. yesterday after fielding calls from countless media outlets and even Warren’s own campaign.


http://bostonherald.com/news/us_politics/view.bg?articleid=1061128421

Lem said...

Guess what:

Elizabeth Warren has never really worked a day in her life. She's never really dealt with the kind of tribal issues that a majority of the Casinos in this country are facing in terms of how they keep their young from drinking too much, how do they get the Indians and the Redskins to change their name and why do they worry about their future.

Tank said...

1. Hard to believe that the NEW YORK TIMES was once the paper of record, a proud institution. Now just a division of the Dem National Committee.

2. I too benefitted from preferences. I was preferred over other candidates with lower grades, lower LSAT's and less accomplishments. Funny how I'm not embarrassed by that.

rehajm said...

If the 'officials involved' at Harvard said her lineage was either not discussed or not a factor, they are violating their school's own community standards, as well as the code of conduct.

From the student handbook-

the kennedy school will work affirmatively to recruit a highly diverse group of students, faculty, and staff. It is committed to increasing the numbers of underrep- resented minorities, particularly women and people of color. It will work to ensure that our appointments and selection procedures consciously identify and evaluate a people from underrepresented groups.

Strelnikov said...

Oddly, I have exactly the same degree of Cherokee blood that Warren is now claiming (1/32) and can easily document it. I had no idea that I could have made a career out of it. Damn.

Strelnikov said...

And, as you can see from the picture, she and I have about the same degree of NA appearance, too. Missed my chance to advance by deception.

Hoosier Daddy said...

"... One ancestor, 5 generations back (32=2^5) soone great-great-great-grandparent. I think..."

Interesting. Well as far back as my lineage, I can go back to the late 1800s and everyone had a Polish surname. I guess I might have some Teutonic, Lithuanian or Ukranian blood if I dug far enough but none of then will get me in the Who's Who of Aggrieved Minority Victims so ill have to continue advancing my career the old fashioned way.

EDH said...

The Warren campaign confirmed on Monday that Ms. Warren had listed herself as a minority member in a legal directory, but that she had done nothing wrong and that Mr. Brown was creating smoke where there was no fire.

Here's the full press release from the Warren campaign.

write_effort said...

The third post on this topic?

rhhardin said...

Warren could offer some bits of wisdom from time to time, just to indicate that she's worth something.

That's the way white people do it, anyway.

Scott M said...

Doesn't this whole thing smack of holding your opponents up to their own ideals?

dreams said...

"The dirty little secret of liberals. They believe minorities are inferior and need special help. They also hate gay people. Why do you think they like the term "teabagger" when deriding the Tea Party."

I believe that liberals are basically selfish people just out for themselves but want to see themselves as wonderful people when they look in the mirror so they rationalize their behavior.

rehajm said...

Scott M said...
Doesn't this whole thing smack of holding your opponents up to their own ideals?


Uncle Saul's rule #4- Make opponents live up to their own book of rules.

Delicious.

lwh3 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lyle said...

I have the same family lore about native American ancestry in my family as well. Although it is not proven yet, my mother is likely 1/32 Alabama-Coushatta (Creek).

No way in the world would we ever think to hold ourselves out as native though. We wouldn't even qualify based on the tribe's own rules, which is 1/16.

If she had only just taken pride in her heritage and not used it to signal herself as native, she could have done that... but trying to affirmative action her Great Mother self up the ladder was wrong.

Insufficiently Sensitive said...

Warren was listed as 'minority' in the PC-diversity sections of three universities, the last being Harvard in 1995. Later that luxury ended, but by then she had fully cashed in on the scam.

traditionalguy said...

Hiring Professors for highly paid appointments is an insiders paradise. The "rules" are a shell game cover story for the hiring of their friends first. Warren has friends who have friends.

When the hiring is finished then the game escalates to time for promotions into higher paid newly created or renamed departments of whatever as retirement approaches in order to double the amount of the Pension vested payments for life.

That's when friends come in handy, because they will not blow the whistle so that when their turn to do the same comes it will be there to cash in.

Of course they are telling their noble stories that we have been trained to believe in. But really this is only a "Hey Rube" call going out to come together and protect the insiders from the marks.

CWJ said...

I see the 1/32 ratio for Warren has already been mentioned. I would only add that this would the ceiling not the floor of her native americaness. The evidence appears to be that one of Warren's g-g-g grandmothers was listed as an Indian on her marriage certificate.

IOW, it's the same sort of check the box evidence as Warren's assertion that she's native American. If g-g-g granny is anything less than 100% pure Indian, Warren's 1/32 gets much smaller really fast.

lwh3 said...

Mea culpa. I've been on admissions and hiring committees at a lower-tiered law school, and I have to confess that I've looked the other way when an applicant claimed minority status that I doubted. Why look a gift horse in the mouth? I'm happy to claim that status in our reports. (Those at the top law schools can't imagine how hard it is for those of us at the bottom when they're all fishing in our pond.) Besides, any inquiry into the bona fides of the claim of minority status would be awkward at best and probably extremely offensive. I don't feel the need to police others' status claims. Any time a society's rulers sets up a system of rules, society sets about to game the system. Witness Apple's tax strategies.

X said...

It's amazing how Affirmative Action is so desperately needed, yet no actual individuals can be identified who benefited.

dreams said...

"1. Hard to believe that the NEW YORK TIMES was once the paper of record, a proud institution. Now just a division of the Dem National Committee.

2. I too benefitted from preferences. I was preferred over other candidates with lower grades, lower LSAT's and less accomplishments. Funny how I'm not embarrassed by that."

I'm looking forward to the day that the NY Times goes bankrupt. Pinch Sulzberger is a childish liberal lightweight and his performance is bankrupting the times.

Jay said...

said he uncovered a marriage certificate at 4 p.m. yesterday after fielding calls from countless media outlets and even Warren’s own campaign.


Well isn't that convenient!?

By the way, how is a marriage certificate proof she has any Native American heritage?

Oh, and I enjoyed this:

Suzan Shown Harjo, a former executive director of the National Congress of American Indians, expressed outrage yesterday after learning that Warren had identified herself as a Native American on law school records without documentation.

“If you believe you are these things then that’s fine and dandy, but that doesn’t give you the right to claim yourself as Native American,” said Harjo, who said Warren might have taken a job another Native American could have received.

CWJ said...

Jay, See my comment above. We're on the same page in the proof department.

Scott M said...

you believe you are these things then that’s fine and dandy, but that doesn’t give you the right to claim yourself as Native American

I thought "Indian" and "Native American" were offensive. Isn't the politically correct term currently "undocumented Asian"?

Original Mike said...

I think the problem for Warren is that this issue feeds (fairly, IMO) the narrative that she is a phony. The article that edutcher linked to last night is an interesting read.

Darrell said...

Of course, no one will ask to see that marriage certificate.

Googling "O.C. Smith," I see she gets around-- as proof of Cherokee heritage. For example, in the geneology of the Burrickers/Borakers.

The first name or names of Jonathan’s
wife is a mystery. In some records it is
“O. C. Sarah Smith” (according to Al
Donica and Donald Richardson) and in
the 1960 census for Bledsoe County,
Tennesee she is listed as “Neoma
Crawford” (but “Nioma” in the index) .
What do the initials “O.C.” stand for
and where did they come from? Was
Sarah also called “Oma” as a shortened
version of Neoma? Lynda Smith uses
the combined name “Neoma (Oma?)
C. Sarah SMITH” in her reports.

What was Neoma’s or Sarah’s Indian
name? Could it have been “Osee” or
“Osie”? Lynda Smith said, “When
Neoma’s son William J. Crawford
married his second wife Mary LONG
in Oklahoma, he stated on his marriage
application that his parents were
Johnathan Houston Crawford and O.
C. Sarah Smith and that his mother
was Cherokee Indian.


http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~kgissy/borakernl/34.pdf

Darrell said...

This has been going on for a long time.

When my ancestor Stachu (Stanley) got off the boat from Poland in the nineteenth century, he claimed Indian ancestry when he found out the army was handing out free blankets.

Drew Cloutier said...

I took a bankruptcy law course (one of my best law school courses)from Jay Westbrook at the University of Texas in the mid-1980's. Our textbook (which I thought was quite good) was authored by Elizabeth Warren and Jay Westbrook. Amazon lists five books co-authored by the two of them (more if you include some out-of-date books). Why is the NYT quoting Professor Westbrook without identifying his financial ties to Professor Warren? I don't doubt that Professor Westbrook holds Professor Warren in high esteem, but the ties between them are too extensive to leave unexposed.

Also, why is the NYT quoting Professor Westbrook, who has been on the Texas faculty from at least 1985 to date, on the issue of what Harvard thought when hiring Professor Warren in 1995? He certainly was not part of any delibrative process at Harvard.

Drew Cloutier said...

Correction: Amazon lists four books which Warren & Westbrook are co-authors, not including books for which there are more recent editions/supplements.

Jay said...

CWJ,
good point about the 1/32 and the great-great-great grandmother having to be 100% pure Indian.

I suspect when this is all over she'll either be apologizing for being told false tales by an unnamed relative or take the stage at the next campaign event in feathered headdress & moccasins,.

Amartel said...

DCS @ 10:07
Exactly.
Affirmative action is a bone (paid for with other people's money) that you throw to losers so you can look good. Certainly not something you put on your own resume.

There's a very simple way of clearing up this confusion, Professor Candidate Chief Warren: grades and scores.

Kirby Olson said...

Race and gender and class are a game of three-card monte and to some extent everyone at Harvard has to play that game. Even Larry Summers found out he should have played the game better than he did. Not even a president of the college can afford to buck it, or else they're out. but everyone also knows that it's a shyster's game. Let's say race is said to give you a one-down position. Does this mean that Papa Doc Duvalier, Idi Amin, or Patrick Mugabe should be Affirmative Action hires? Let's say gender puts you one down. Does this mean that Paris Hilton should move of the head of the class? Let's say class is the criterion, and how you were born is what matters. Does this mean that we should give a preferential loan rate to Jed Clampitt?

The reason I switched over to the Republicans is they want universal standards. They have since Lincoln. Universal standards make sense.

Everything else is a shyster's game.

FedkaTheConvict said...

Rush is currently talking about this story...now it will really have legs.

Penny said...

Perhaps Warren was just one of those "pleaser" females back in the day. She, of course, needed no special consideration, but her university?

Harvard needed her!

Balfegor said...

There's a very simple way of clearing up this confusion, Professor Candidate Chief Warren: grades and scores.

I think by the time you're considering professorships at Harvard, you're not just looking at grades and scores. Never been on a faculty hiring committee (naturally), but I'd imagine the ultimate decision is mostly subjective. And that seems totally reasonable to me.

William said...

"The land was ours before we were the lands." Perhaps so many people claim Cherokee princess descent because it makes them feel more attached to the land of their birth. All of my grandparents' grandparents were born in this country, but I still feel America is a foreign country with many strange customs. Nothing about Lady Gaga is native to me......I read the NYT article. The writer seems to have not used his investigative skills to find out how this mysterious entry came to pass. It's like the Stonehenge Tablets--one of those strange things that we will never fully understand.....What I got from the article was that Ms. Warren never benefited from her Native American claims and that the real scandal was Scott Brown's trying a captalize on this non issue. There's a good chance that this is the version that will stick. Schlesinger wrote two volumes on the Jackson Presidency and never mentioned the Trial of Tears. Native American heritage can be included or excluded as needed by liberals.

Rabel said...

Warren's first big break in life was a female-only, full ride (tuition, r and b, books, spending money) debate scholly to George Washington U.

An honest answer to whether or not she claimed Native American status on that application would be interesting.

After graduating Rutgers Law she "hung out a shingle" and and was practicing retail law (closings, incorporations) when she got an out-of-the blue call from Rutgers inviting her to come and teach at the law school.

She quit that when her husband's job transfer took the young family to Houston, where she was immediately offered a tenured job at U. of Houston Law.

She's very talented, but also very lucky if AA wasn't greasing the skids on her climb to the top.

As many have said, it's a question of honesty.

sleepless nights said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
t-man said...

We all should have suspected her Indian heritage when she cut that campaign ad, which closed with Warren standing silent on Beacon Hill, overlooking the filth and litter of the Occupy Boston camp, with a single tear rolling down her cheek.

rhhardin said...

Rush suggests ordering cigarettes from her tax-free website.

Darrell said...

and Warren worked as a waitress.

At age twelve?
Or is this part of family "lore" too?

FedkaTheConvict said...

@sleeplessnights. Clearly you'd rather believe the hagiography over the truth.

http://www.nypost.com/p/news/opinion/opedcolumnists/harvard_populist_NF5eRRKHIxpScVe7Vk67eP#ixzz1tWHJIeNS

"When the campaign began, The Boston Globe saluted Warren for her "rise from poverty" as a child in Oklahoma City. Since then, as the truth has trickled out, the narrative has evolved. Goodbye poverty, hello to "the jagged edge of the middle class."

We've learned that, by 1965, Elizabeth's family had three cars, including a white MG that the hard-scrabble Native American drove daily to her tony high school. Still, the Globe insisted, the MG was "beat up."

Last Friday, she released four years of tax returns. Over those four years, Warren and her husband, another Harvard Law prof, averaged $300,000 more than Sen. Brown and his spouse, a TV anchor. In 2009, the Warrens made $981,000 vs. the Browns' $249,000."

chickenlittle said...

Taking a page from the TSA, in the future, Affirmative Action hires could supply DNA samples--no matter what the phenotype.

Original Mike said...

@sleeplessnights: What is the source for Warren's childhood story?

Peter said...

'Hoosier Daddy' said, thought I read somewhere she is claiming 1/32 part Cherokee? Any geneologists out there that can explain how you can get that kind of heriditary breakdown?

Well, you don't do it with DNA testing. Most Native American tribes use blood quantum to determine who is eligable for membership or citizenship in the tribe or Native American Nation.

So if it's good enough for the Tribes, perhaps it should be good enough for Harvard?

Rabel said...

My comment disappeared. I'll try again.

Warren's first big break in life was a female-only, full ride (tuition, r and b, books, spending money) debate scholly to George Washington U.

An honest answer to whether or not she claimed Native American status on that application would be interesting.

After graduating Rutgers Law she "hung out a shingle" and and was practicing retail law (closings, incorporations) when she got an out-of-the blue call from Rutgers inviting her to come and teach at the law school.

She quit that when her husband's job transfer took the young family to Houston, where she was immediately offered a tenured job at U. of Houston Law.

She's very talented, but also very lucky if AA wasn't greasing the skids on her climb to the top.

It's a question of honesty.

Scott M said...

Rush is currently talking about this story...now it will really have legs.

And they have a new album out in June and a new North American tour. Is there anything those three guys can't do?

Stoutcat said...

Another thing to consider when thinking about Ms. Warren's g-g-g-grandmother: people tend to forget that the mortality rate way back then was fairly high; people died young of disease, accident, what-have-you. And many many women died young in childbirth.

It's possible that her forebear was simply a second or third wife brought into the family because the children needed a mother.

This is what happened in my own family. My 3x great grandmother was half Indian, and 3x great grandfather married her because his wife died in childbirth, and he had four kids who needed a mother, including one newborn. (The newborn died a short time later.) Carrie had been the neighbor/nurse/midwife who had taken care of the wife and delivered the baby.

She was a good wife, and a good mother to the rest of the children, but nobody descended from that branch of the family ever pretended that they were x% American Indian.

sleepless nights said...

Big Oops.

Should have read: "I did NOT take due to personal reasons" (scholarships, military) and now, looking back, feel quite guilty since we really did need the money.

Still happy I did not take them though, but the guilt is there in regard to my mother.

Balfegor said...

Re: sleepless nights:

People forget what life was like before Google. What your parents told you about your ancestry was pretty much all there was to it.

In the West, maybe. In other countries, people have been writing that kind of thing down in their family registries for thousands of years.

CWJ said...

Sleepless @12:30 (et al)

First comment - even if 100% true, so what. Think about it. Admirable as her rise would be from all that adversity, NONE of it would count for squat when weighed in the affirmative action scales. But checking the right box regardless of your actual life experience might win you the lottery. If anything, Warren's real life hurdles (if true) show the corruption of rewarding the box checkers.

Second comment - if you are down with someone's political positions please vote for them. But to trot out their hard life (if true) smacks of the old "queen for a day" TV show. All we're missing now is that she was born in a log cabin (at least that's what the family lore says).

Don Jansen said...

Not lineage, but with scholarship like this: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1599826?seq=3 Lingerie?

BarryD said...

"she was hired because she was an outstanding teacher"

AA notwithstanding, this statement is more likely to be a lie, about any given faculty hire, than any other. It is, however, what those who pay tuition want to hear.

tim in vermont said...

I feel bad for the Warren squaw. All she was doing was taking advantage of the system she believes in so heartily.

Dave Himrich said...

In other news, Elizabeth Warren is, by her account, the only multi-millionaire in America who succeeded on her own.

Unknown said...

About her 1/32 claim. As pointed out about, that is the upper limit. But the Cherokee a long history of intermarriage. By 1836 the Chief of the Cherokee (John Ross) was only 1/8 Cherokee by blood quantum. The listing of her relative as Cherokee makes her 1/32 Cherokee only if that relative was 100% Cherokee. Possible, but not all that likely.

Todd Douglas said...

In response to the thought that others have used this method of claiming the mantle of diversity for themselves, I seem to recall that a guy named Ward Churchill at the University of Colorado claimed Native American heritage. Didn't he also claim a Cherokee heritage?

Scott M said...

All she was doing was taking advantage of the system she believes in so heartily.

Don't you mean squaw got-um heap big wampum of white school's bad medicine?

harrogate said...

"The question is why does this person with excellent credentials get selected from the pool of applicants who all have excellent credentials? Why did Warren move up the ranks of the law schools the way she did?"


And, what, Anne, explains your own successes in academia?

Alex said...

Even though Ann claims "cruel neutrality", nobody but nobody talks so snarkily about AA if they aren't firmly opposed to it. Basically she really isn't "cruelly neutral" officially speaking, wink wink nod nod, but we can read between the lines!

Rob said...

Elizabeth Warren addresses the issue on YouTube.

Camp Runamok said...

"Those other people needed some special advantage, but oh, no, not her."

Correct! And her $ millions in campaign funds raised from Wall Street fatcats only came from those who "want reform".

lukeOB said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
lukeOB said...

Are you suggesting she would not have merited hiring absent her minority status? By all accounts, her scholarship was impressive and prolific, as was her teaching record. Perhaps these officials are lying when they say her claimed minority status had no effect on hiring decisions, but that doesn't mean she wouldn't have been hired without it. Clearly white men are still hired in droves as tenured professors at all of the top law schools.

Scott M said...

Are you suggesting she would not have merited hiring absent her minority status?

I don't think the Brown campaign is suggesting that at all. They merely floated the story and watched as Warren and the interested left gave themselves a good oroborusing.

tim in vermont said...

This likely all started when the Warren clan were looking at college admission forms for their little papoose. They were probably upset at the obstacles the great white father had put in the way of their innocent child. It was probably her mom who suggested, "honey, you know you have Cherokee ancestry, why not put that down?"

tim in vermont said...

tman,
That comment was a coffee spitter, thanks...

Daniel said...

...all said that she was hired because she was an outstanding teacher, and that her lineage was either not discussed or not a factor.

I've been on more than a dozen hiring committees at various universities. This claim could not be more obviously false.

In the first place, as noted, no department with any claim to excellence hires regular (not clinical, adjunct, etc) faculty for their teaching. Certainly not Harvard.

Second, the incentives at every university are such that you can be certain that her "lineage" was both discussed and a factor. Not to say that she wouldn't have been hired even if she didn't have this bogus diversity claim; I have no idea. But given that she did have this claim, and she was in the habit of using it, it would certainly be noticed. As Ann notes, law schools fight for racial diversity. (Remember Harvard, Obama, and Derek Bell?) Universities pay for it. Departments (and law schools) are punished for lacking it.

In short, this line of excuse could not be a more blatant lie.

Bruce Hayden said...

Are you suggesting she would not have merited hiring absent her minority status? By all accounts, her scholarship was impressive and prolific, as was her teaching record. Perhaps these officials are lying when they say her claimed minority status had no effect on hiring decisions, but that doesn't mean she wouldn't have been hired without it. Clearly white men are still hired in droves as tenured professors at all of the top law schools.

Not in droves. More like, one out, one in. Indeed, with lower tier law schools, you might as well not apply for entry level law prof positions if you are a straight white male. A lot of bonus points for a lesbian Hispanic with Native American and maybe a bit of Black blood.

As far as I can tell, the top law schools hire a lot of laterals. Warren is not that unusual there in the route that she took to Harvard. And, why not? They have the money to pay for top talent, and they have the status to attract it. So, why not let the lower tier schools groom the law profs, and skim off the cream when it has matured. That way, they don't get stuck (as often) with the dead wood that builds up around many law schools.

As has been pointed out repeatedly, teaching ability doesn't get you hired at the top law schools, or, really, at most law schools. As was pointed out by David Bernstein at volokh.com:

"Harvard and other elite law schools are now hiring tenured faculty primarily based on teaching prowess, rather than scholarship? Expect the relevant lateral appointments committees to be inundated with c.v.s from student-selected “professors of the year” who have until now somehow escaped the top law schools’ notice.

[As Orin writes in the comments, "to a law professor familiar with academic hiring, this [being hired by an elite school based on teaching rather than scholarship] is akin to proposing that a 19-year old guy was attracted to a Victoria’s Secret model primarily because of her personality. It’s possible in theory, but not likely in reality.”]
"

Drew Cloutier said...

Regarding the family lore claim, the U.S. government created the "Dawes Commission" which compiled the "Dawes Rolls" document membership in the Five Civilized Tribes, including the Cherokee, in 1906. Pretty well-known in Oklahoma.

See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dawes_Rolls

DoctorAu said...

This is so silly: if it wasn't discussed, it was disclosed on her application, otherwise how did they know of her heritage for their puff pieces?
If it wasn't a factor, why were they so proud to boast about it? Of course it was important to have someone on the faculty who is not only a female, but claiming a Native American on staff is a diversity feather in the cap no faculty can resist.
But we mustn't look under the curtain.

William said...

Family lore has it that my family originally came from Krypton. My grandparents were undocumented immigrants so they had to keep it on the q.t. They both found work as furniture movers and were able to send their kids to college. People from Kypton have contributed much to this country, and they never get any favorable treatment in hiring or recruitment. That's fine with me. I have a good job as an x-ray tech and I'm perfectly satisfied with my life and the many fine values I have inherited from my Krypton ancestors..

Methadras said...

Oh, I don't know? The unmitigated truth for a change? Shocking.

Methadras said...

DCS said...

Why do you think they like the term "teabagger" when deriding the Tea Party.


So they can see their little gay wonder boy, Anderson Poopster, titter and giggle like a little school-girl about it.

Badger PUndit said...

Ann, I've done some looking into your question: "who was the next person?" Possibly Gerald Torres, who like Warren was a U. Texas tenured prof, and who visited at Harvard around the time Warren did, but who was one of the minority prospects not given a tenure offer, according to this recent article, page 7 & note 102:

http://harvard.academia.edu/PhilipLee/Papers/889385/The_Griswold_9_and_Student_Activism_for_Faculty_Diversity_at_Harvard_Law_School_in_the_Early_1990s

Torres is a Yale law grad who also has degrees from Stanford and Michigan -- much more impressive than Warren's academic credentials. And he's a REAL Native American who actually teaches law related to Native Americans, as a glance at his bio (and his photo) shows:

http://www.utexas.edu/law/faculty/gtorres

http://www.law.yale.edu/faculty/GTorres.htm

Maybe Torres eventually did get a tenure offer from Harvard, and turned it down. But if not, maybe he's the identifiable victim -- if Harvard wanted to boast of having a Native American and hired Warren instead of Torres, that really says something about Harvard, and about the "diversity" scheme in general.

Cedarford said...

My own take on Massachusetts as a one-time resident is that the electorate is largely devotedly loyal Democrat yet more conservative than some of the top leaders.
Periodically, when the Dems get too leftist for the voters, they "award" them a Republican as a rebuke. Weld, Romney, Scott Brown.
The party bosses in Boston have gotten more liberal than the mainstream again, wanting Harvard Law to be the approver of candidates for high office...and more insistent on a largely white state that ONLY minorities have the moral legitimacy for the highest offices.

Harvard Law put the "Approved" stamp on the never-elected Martha Coakley and Scott Brown beat her. Warren is another "she is one of us Brahman elites, it's time she got the SEnate Seat Harvard wants her to get" candidates.

I think voters in Mass are tired of it, and think Scott Brown is "more like them" than Kerry, Deval, Coakley, Warren..

And for lots of white households in Massachusetts, even loyal Dem working whites - racial and other minority preferences denied them and their children is a real sore point.

MarkD said...

If she were good enough, she wouldn't need the handicap. That's all I need to know about Ms Warren. Actually, that's all I need to know about affirmative action.

Just Lurking said...

I compare Warren with my nephew. He is not only more Native American Indian than Warren (1/8th), but those Native American Indian roots are Hispanic. Yet - to the dismay of my sister who is footing the bill- he refused to check the Hispanic box on his college forms. Not because he is ashamed of his heritage, but because he was/is embarrassed to call himself "Hispanic" when he looks white and can't speak Spanish.

There are a lot of Americans more "Indian" than Warren (like my 1/16 Cherokee husband), who would never think to game the system for their own advantage. I think my nephew's reaction was correct. Warren should be embarrassed.

JorgXMcKie said...

As for university hiring committees, we recently had a hiring pool for a new hire. The Dean practically wet his pants when he figured out "no matter who we choose it's a diversity hire, and two of them are "twofers"!!" [Little did he know that one of them is a "threefer" or he probably wold have wet his pants.

leslyn said...

"Hey, but who else might be cheating, claiming minority status that's not really true? Now, now, you're not supposed to think about that. It's quite unseemly, isn't it? Impolite."

Hey, I get it! Obama!

Don M said...

If her father was one, she would be a half.
If her grandfather was one, she would be a quarter.
If her great grandfather was one, she would be an eighth.
If her grandfathers's grandfather was one she would be a 16th.
If her great grandfather's grandfather was one she would be a 32nd.

ed said...

"I thought "Indian" and "Native American" were offensive. Isn't the politically correct term currently "undocumented Asian"? " - Scott M

Hey you watch that mister!

I'm Asian but not a Bering Sea Pedestrian!

:)

bagoh20 said...

"People forget what life was like before Google. What your parents told you about your ancestry was pretty much all there was to it.

Exactly. I was told my whole life that I was part French, Welsh, German and English.

I got on Ancestry.com (which is amazing) and within a few hours had traced my lineage back to Germany in the 1600's on both sides. 100% German, despite being told otherwise for my whole life.

It's amazing what that website does. Very cool how it uses thousands of other peoples' research to very quickly hook you up with your own. It's a multiplier effect that works great. You quickly find records, even photos of ancestors or their tombstones that others have found in their own searches.

Some people on there work it tirelessly and you get to take advantage of that.

Don M said...

The amusing thing is geneological records are largely fake. There is too much to be gained from the 'right' connection, and too easy to make up relationships when you have to go from one to another up the chain.

A researcher did it the other way. He picked out a famous Zulu woman who had 11 children, and traced their descent. One was Pieter Botha, president of South Africa, and leader of the 'Oxcart Wing' of the Nationalist Party, the one that pushed apartheit forever. That such a man could actually be 'Colored' of mixed race kicked the stuffing out of racial purity devotees. The South African Racist Republic fell soon after.

Don M said...

If you really need 'bonus points' then just claim to be an homosexual for as long as you need it. It isn't like there is a test, and you don't have to try out, like for the football team.

tim in vermont said...

Elizabeth Warren made a video:

"I'm an Indian too" from "Annie Get Your Gun." And here radio jocks used to play "Oklahoma" to make fun of her, well she better get used to this one:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gZEZPs06Sgw

Penny said...

Cedarford, that rings true to my eyes, and I dare say, that the very same thing happened in NJ when enough bright blue state voters pulled the lever for Christie.

Ha ha

That's the best thing about a democracy.

"DO YOU HEAR ME NOW?"

Penny said...

Anyway, since we're talking about Affirmative Action "minorities" in this thread, you want some long term gains on the things closest to your heart?

Step - away - from - PREDICTABLE.

Penny said...

That's exactly what Elizabeth Warren did.

And I fault her for not being a better TEACHER, when the spotlight was recently turned to her.

Harvard was snookered.

Let's see if Massachusetts' voters are.

Minicapt said...

The Aussies have been piddling about concerning the degree of "blackness" necessary for a claim to Aboriginal ancestry. A current storm squall is being played, beginning here:
http://bunyipitude.blogspot.ca/2012/04/these-jokers-always-with-gags.html
Previously, a senior news columnist lost a defamation case:
http://www.theaustralian.com.au/media/andrew-bolt-x-racial-vilification-court-case/story-e6frg996-1226148919092

Cheers

ALH said...

Since this story broke, I've been paying closer attention to my friends and am starting to suspect some of them might be gaming he system with sketchy claims of "minority status".

Like my blue-eyed, blonde haired friend named Sven RedFeather. I think there is a chance that his grandma was not really a Cherokee Princess.

kimsch said...

I was part of the Ancestry beta DNA testing. The tests reveal that I have 45% from the British Isles, 29% Scandinavian, 22% Central European, and 4% unknown.

Now, my father's mother's mother was from Denmark, born of Danish parents so I should be 1/8 Danish (Great Grandma 100%, Grandma 50%, Dad 25%, me 12.5% but DNA will tell I guess.

The Ancestry DNA doesn't tell where exactly: So I don't know how much Irish, Scottish, English, and Welsh there is. I know the Central Europe is Germany and Alsace, France. The Scandinavian is Danish.

That 4% could be anything though. Native American, African, Asian, who knows...

Penny said...

"That 4% could be anything though."

Kimsch was apparently lucky by birth.

Way to go, girl!

William said...

"The land was ours before we were the land's." There's another explanation for all this family lore of Indian ancestors..... All of my grandparents and, so far as I know, their parents before them were born in America. Yet there's a part of me that feels ill at ease and slightly out of place in America. "There's nothing that is quite your own, and yet this is you." People may claim Indian ancestry as a way of giving roots to their identity. American culture is as ephemeral and shape shifting as a Lady Gaga costume. In America the endless shock of the new can cause convulsions. We need grounding to dissipate the currents. If one's own culture doesn't offer such grounding, then make one up. Indian heritage seems an excellent way of declaring a primal right of access to the VIP room at the strip club.

William said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Balfegor said...

Re: William:

All of my grandparents and, so far as I know, their parents before them were born in America. Yet there's a part of me that feels ill at ease and slightly out of place in America.

Eh? I don't think any of my ancestors set foot in the US before 1900. I may not particularly feel like one of you aboriginals, but I don't feel particularly ill at ease in America. This land is mine.

kimsch said...

@Penny - could even be Bajoran. Lord knows I like earrings. But I don't have a a little bump over my nose...

TomB said...

@sleepless nights

"In any case, Elizabeth Warren has made some really good and prescient moral calls on a national level, so I really do see this as nothing more than an attempt to destroy her by her enemies - bread and circuses for the 24/7 news cycle as well."

So, in other words, the ends justify the means. You could have saved yourself a lot of typing.

GetReal said...

Ann,

I noticed that you're not really much of a scholar in any sense of the word. To what extent do you think that you were hired because the University of of Wisconsin Law School needed a few more women on the faculty? You certainly didn't get hired because of the merit of your thoughts.