Thursday afternoon, Gov. Dayton sent out an email highlighting their transportation plan. Saying that their math is questionable is being charitable in the extreme. Here’s what I’m talking about:

In January, Governor Dayton introduced a straight-forward, honest proposal to make long-overdue investments in our aging, under-funded transportation system. The Governor’s proposal would honestly address our state’s $6 billion road and bridge deficit over the next ten years, fix 2,200 miles of state roadways and 330 bridges, provide nearly $2.4 billion for local road and bridge improvements, and invest $2.9 billion in Greater Minnesota and Metro Area transit improvements.

By contrast, the transportation proposal introduced by Republicans in the House of Representatives would fix just 40 miles of local roads over the next four years.

That’s BS. First off, the Dayton-DFL plan would raise taxes by $6,000,000,000 over the next 10 years. The Dayton-DFL plan doesn’t focus on just roads and bridges, though. A significant portion of that tax increase comes in the form of a sales tax for the 7-county metro area which is dedicated to transit projects.

That means the Dayton-DFL plan raises taxes dedicated to roads and bridges by $450,000,000 a year for 10 years. The initial Republican plan called for spending $750,000,000 over the next 2 years. All of that money is dedicated to fixing roads and bridges. The final GOP plan will likely jump to $1,250,000,000 for the next 2 years. If that’s what the GOP plan calls for, that means Republicans will spend $400,000,000 more on fixing roads and bridges over the next 2 years than the Dayton-DFL plan will spend.

I’d love hearing the DFL’s explanation on how they’ll spend less money fixing roads and bridges over the next 2 years than Republicans but they’ll fix 55 times as many miles of roads as Republicans. That’s with an asterisk, too. According to the Dayton-DFL email, the DFL allegedly will fix 2,200 miles of state roadways and 330 bridges. According to the Dayton-DFL email, Republicans will only fix 40 miles of roads.

I might’ve been born at night but it wasn’t last night. This chart is pure fiction or it’s proof that the Dayton-DFL transportation plan is a massive middle class tax increase:

Check out this statement:

Would invest $785 million per year over the next 10 years to repair and replace state and local roads and bridges.

If that’s accurate, that’s $7,850,000,000 worth of middle class tax increases over the next 10 years. Earlier in the email, Gov. Dayton said that his proposal “would honestly address our state’s $6 billion road and bridge deficit over the next ten years.” According to the chart, they’d spend nearly $8,000,000,000 on fixing Minnesota’s roads. Which is it?

The $7,850,000,000 figure is 31% bigger than the $6,000,000,000 figure. They can’t both be right.

The difference, I suspect, is a significantly bigger middle class tax increase.

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Scott Pruitt, Oklahoma’s attorney general, distinguished himself in writing this op-ed in the Wall Street Journal. This paragraph is especially inspirational to this federalist:

Declining to establish a state exchange allowed Oklahoma to voice its strong political opposition to the Affordable Care Act as a whole, as well as to make a statement that it wanted neither the large-employer mandate nor the individual mandate to have effect within its borders. That was the trade-off. Oklahoma declined the premium tax credits, but freed itself of those mandates, and that was a choice the state was happy to make.

The states aren’t imbeciles that need the federal government’s protection from themselves. They’re co-equal sovereign governments quite capable of making decisions for themselves. In the early 1990s, the federal welfare programs were out of control. States like Arkansas, Massachusetts, Michigan and Wisconsin started experimenting on welfare. First, they got waivers from HHS giving them the authority to experiment.

Thanks to their experimentation, they improved millions of people’s lives.

Another point worth making is that the ACA, aka Obamacare, is an experiment in anti-federalism. Rather than letting states experiment, President Obama pushed a one-size-fits-all plan down our throats. Scott Pruitt and Oklahoma asserted their rights to make their own decision as allowed by the ACA. It might be that Oklahoma made the wrong decision but it’s their decision to make. The fact that they made an informed choice is proof that they weren’t coerced.

In the original Obamacare lawsuit NFIB vs. Sebelius, the Supreme Court ruled that Medicaid expansion was unconstitutional because the ACA didn’t give the states of opting out of Medicaid expansion. The fact that Oklahoma said no, according to Pruitt, made their decision based on the trade-off of not getting IRS subsidies in exchange for not dealing with the individual and employer mandates. That’s a rational choice, something that wasn’t there with Medicaid expansion.

Third, this sort of federal program isn’t antithetical to federalism, it is federalism. As we explained in our amicus brief to the court, this carrot-and-stick approach is found in dozens of federal programs sprinkled throughout the United States Code. The states are not children that the federal government must paternalistically “protect” from the consequences of their choices by rewriting statutes. In our constitutional system, states are free to make decisions and bear the political consequences, good or bad, of those choices.

Frankly, I’d rather trust decisions made at the state level than decisions made by a DC politician or bureaucrat. In fact, it wouldn’t take more than a nanosecond or 2 to make that decision for me.

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Ron Fournier’s article on Hillary’s email scandal is titled Hillary Clinton still doesn’t get it. Stealing a line that Charles Krauthammer might say, Mr. Fournier isn’t cynical enough.

A cornered Clinton is a craven Clinton, which is why we should view Hillary Rodham Clinton’s latest public relations trick with practiced skepticism. “I want the public to see my email,” she tweeted Wednesday night. “I asked State to release them. They said they will review them for release as soon as possible.”

If she wants us to see her email, why did she create a secret account stored on a dark server registered at her home?

Hillary doesn’t want the public to know what’s in her emails. What’s happening is that Hillary is doing as little as possible. She’s doing that to make it look like she’s being transparent without actually being transparent.

If she wants us to see her email, Clinton should turn over every word written on her dark account(s) for independent vetting. Let somebody the public trusts decide which emails are truly private and which ones belong to the public.

Like everything else about the response to this controversy, Clinton’s tweet is reminiscent of the 1990s, when her husband’s White House overcame its wrongdoing by denying the truth, blaming Republicans, and demonizing and bullying the media. It’s a shameless script, unbecoming of a historic figure who could be our next president, and jarringly inappropriate for these times.

It’s a shameless script that’s being deployed by a shameless person. It’s impossible to shame a Clinton. It’s as possible to shame a Clinton as it is to get a pig to feel guilty for rolling around in mud.

My former employer, The Associated Press said Wednesday that it was considering legal action over years of stonewalling its requests for government documents covering Clinton’s tenure as secretary of state. The AP has sought her full schedules and calendars and for details on the State Department’s decision to grant a special position to a longtime Clinton aide, Huma Abedin, among other documents, the New York Times, reported. The oldest AP request was made in March 2010.

“We believe it’s critically important that government officials and agencies be held accountable to the voters,” said AP’s general counsel, Karen Kaiser. “In this instance, we’ve exhausted our administrative remedies in pursuit of important documents and are considering legal action.”

I can recite the Clinton script in my sleep. First, they’ll insist that they’re “cooperating fully” with the investigation. Later, they’ll insist that they’ve turned over tens of thousands of documents while essentially arguing that that should be good enough for the investigators. Mixed in along the way will be attempts to intimidate the investigators with smears.

The SCTimes: Community Watchdog?
by Silence Dogood

On February 22, 2015 John Bodette, in an article in the SCTimes entitled “Ethical principles guide our journalism,” listed the principles to which the SCTimes is committed. In part,

Serving the public interest

“We will be vigilant watchdogs of government and institutions that affect the public, fighting to ensure that the public’s business is conducted in public.”

It sounds great, but does the SCTimes actually “walk the walk?” Last spring, the SCTimes was given a slide from a public presentation by the administration detailing SCSU’s losses for the first four years of operation of the Coborn’s Plaza Apartments.

In a subsequent public presentation last November, the administration reported the occupancy of Coborn’s Plaza by “Student Composition.”

When you total the numbers for each of the years you obtain the following figure:

NOTE: The capacity of Coborn’s Plaza Apartments is 453.

The numbers for FY15 are only 7 more than in FY13 (when SCSU lost $1,300,000) and 14 less than in FY14 (when it lost $1,200,000). Clearly, it looks like the University will lose close to another $1,300,000 in FY15. The number for FY15 is also 40 less than the occupancy projection of 364 last Spring as the occupancy percentage dropped to 71.5% from 74%.

Based on the contract with the Wedum Foundation, SCSU is stuck in a lease of the Coborn’s Plaza Apartments for an additional five years. The following table shows, as was described as “conservative” enrollment projections, the enrollment that SCSU has submitted to the MnSCU system office:

Clearly, with declining enrollments, it is unlikely to see an increase in the occupancy of the Coborn’s Plaza Apartments during the next five years. As a result, in the second five years of the minimum ten-year lease, SCSU is likely to lose at least (remember the lease agreement calls for a 2% increase in SCSU’s cost each year) an additional $6,500,000 on top of the $7,700,000 lost in the first five years. In ten years, SCSU will have lost a staggering $14,200,000.

The question to be asked of the SCTimes: Is the loss of $7,700,000 in the first five years of operation of the Coborn’s Plaza Apartments with the potential of a loss totaling $14,200,000 over ten years something that would be of interest to the St. Cloud community? Apparently not, because information about SCSU’s losses on the Coborn’s Plaza Apartments has yet to make it into print in the SCTimes. A somewhat related question: Just how much would SCSU have to lose before the community watchdog determines that this is newsworthy? The answer will be known, if and when the SCTimes watchdogs smell all that money being burned in and on empty dorms.

I’m not holding my breath.

The latest polling measuring President Obama’s national security leadership isn’t the much-needed good news that this administration needs:

Is it a good thing or a bad thing that Congressional leaders invited Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to address a joint meeting of Congress?
Good thing 56%, bad thing 27%

Do you think the Obama administration is too supportive of Israel, not supportive enough, or are the administration’s policies about right?
Too supportive 14%, not supportive enough 41%, about right 35%

Democrats that complained about Speaker Boehner’s invitation to Prime Minister Netanyahu are on the wrong side of that fight by a 2:1 margin. That isn’t the bad news from the poll, though. This is definitely worse news for President Obama, Hillary Clinton and the Democrats:

Do you think the United States has been too aggressive, not aggressive enough or about right in trying to get Iran to stop building a nuclear weapons program?
Too aggressive 7%, not aggressive enough 57%, about right 27%

Do you favor or oppose the United States taking military action against Iran if that were the only way to keep Iran from getting nuclear weapons?
Favor 65%, Oppose 28%

When 3 in 5 voters think you aren’t pushing Iran hard enough to prevent them from getting a nuclear weapon, you’re in a bad position. When 1 in 4 voters thinks you’re being about right, then most voters think you’re a wimp. When two-thirds of people think we should use military force to prevent “Iran from getting nuclear weapons” and you’re an anti-war president, you’re in trouble.

President Obama’s leadership on national security matters, if it can be called that, is pathetic. And yes, President Obama is anti-war. He’s lost 2 wars (Iraq and Afghanistan) thus far. He’s on the path to losing another war to ISIS. His coalition of 60 nations that are fighting ISIS is fiction. His policies towards Russia are helping Putin rebuild the former Soviet empire.

Other than those things, President Obama is a picture in foreign policy leadership.

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Al Franken issued a statement in advance of Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech that read like it was written by the administration:

In a statement earlier Monday, (Sen. Al) Franken (D-MN) described the speech as a “partisan spectacle.”

“This has unfortunately become a partisan spectacle, both because of the impending Israeli election and because it was done without consulting the administration,” Franken said. “I’d be uncomfortable being part of an event that I don’t believe should be happening. I’m confident that, once this episode is over, we can reaffirm our strong tradition of bipartisan support for Israel.”

Franken is just one hyperpartisan Democrat who professes undying loyalty to Israel, then essentially calls Prime Minister Netanyahu a partisan. Doesn’t it sound like Franken’s support of Israel is conditional? In any case, the “partisan debacle” Sen. Franken worried about didn’t happen.

Alexis Simendinger’s fantastic article highlights how Prime Minister Netanyahu’s substantive speech changed the parameters through which politicians view the issue. Here’s one thing Ms. Simendinger highlighted from the “partisan debacle”:

Netanyahu denounced the contours of the deal being negotiated in Switzerland as playing into Iran’s hands. He warned the outcome could accelerate a path toward nuclear war in the Middle East because he believes the parameters would strengthen Iran’s capabilities within a decade to create a nuclear weapon with such speed, the world could not intervene.

“Why would anyone make this deal?” Netanyahu asked. “This is a question that everyone asks in our region.” He let the clear rebuke of the president hang in the air. “Because they hope that Iran will change for the better in the coming years, or they believe that the alternative to this deal is worse?” he continued. “Well, I disagree. I don’t believe that Iran’s radical regime will change for the better after this deal.”

There’s no question that Sen. Franken recited the Democrats’ script perfectly. Similarly, there’s no question that Prime Minister Netanyahu changed the terms of the debate going forward.

The only “partisan debacle” from yesterday’s speech came from the Democrats. John Yarmuth’s diatribe and Nancy Pelosi’s turning her back on Prime Minister Netanyahu set the Democrats’ highly political tone for the event.

Sen. Franken didn’t attend yesterday’s speech because he’s a partisan hack. He didn’t know that Prime Minister Netanyahu’s speech would be a “partisan spectacle.” That’s what he initially said but that’s only because that’s what the administration told him. The speech turned into a dissertation on the things Iran’s leaders have engaged in, including sponsoring terrorist organizations like Hezbollah to attacking US soldiers in Iraq with Iranian-manufactured IEDs.

Had Sen. Franken attended the speech, he might’ve learned something. It’s a shame he took the administration’s word that Prime Minister Netanyahu’s speech would be a partisan speech.

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Alexis Simendinger’s article shows how the Iran-US negotiations have changed thanks to Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech. The debate has shifted thanks to Netanyahu’s speech. Here’s an example of how Prime Minister Netanyahu’s speech shifted things:

Here are some points that resonated with lawmakers:

Obama is misguided, or wears blinders about Iran’s true ambitions and motivations. Speaking to the GOP-controlled House and Senate, Netanyahu reiterated his warning: “Don’t be fooled.” The prime minister reinforced views among conservatives and some Democrats that Obama’s record of recognizing and responding to brewing threats in the Middle East and elsewhere has been less than stellar. Netanyahu argued the administration is being duped by Iran’s negotiators. He believes pledges of reformed nuclear objectives will not change in Iran, no matter what Tehran may sign to win relief from the international sanctions regime. Netanyahu pointed to North Korea as an example of broken nuclear promises.

There’s no reason to think that President Obama and John Kerry will negotiate a deal that doesn’t sell Israel out. They’re both desperately searching for a legacy item. Without that, neither will be more than a footnote in the history books.

Here’s another game changer from Netanyahu’s speech:

Israel advocated tougher adjustments to any pact hammered out with Iran. Although Obama dismissed Netanyahu’s rhetoric as a debunked script that lacked internal logic, the prime minister did more in Washington than criticize negotiations and warn about Iran’s evil intentions.

The prime minister told Congress that any pact with Iran should “demand” that Tehran halt aggression in the Middle East, cease support for terrorism, and end threats against Israel. An agreement should require the verified destruction of all Iranian nuclear infrastructure, including centrifuges and heavy water reactors; include a longer breakout insurance period than one year; and maintain all sanctions for a decade or longer, or until Iran’s behavior is demonstrably and verifiably altered, the prime minister said. “The alternative to this bad deal is a much better deal,” Netanyahu maintained.

President Obama has talked about Iran rejoining the fictional “community of nations” if they simply sign onto this treaty. That’s the rose-colored glasses perspective. Iran isn’t interested in changing. Whether they sign onto this treaty or not, they’ll still want to continue working on getting a nuclear weapon. Whether they sign onto this treaty or not, they’ll still continue supporting terrorist organizations like al-Qa’ida and Hezbollah.

These aren’t transient policy positions than change from administration to administration. They’re long-held positions that haven’t changed since the overthrow of the Shah of Iran. When they say they want to push Israel into the sea, that isn’t the mullahs throwing some red meat to the partisans. It’s their ultimate goal.

Prime Minister Netanyahu showed the world the difference between a mature statesman and a young, hip partisan. The difference was a game-changer.

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Are The Students At SCSU Getting Younger?
by Silence Dogood

On the website for the Office of Strategy, Planning & Effectiveness, you can find the 30th Day Enrollment Profile for each fall semester going back to Fall 2005. A copy of the Fall 2014 30th Day Enrollment Profile is reproduced below.

The 30th day profile gives some information about the makeup of the students at SCSU. If you look back at the 30th Day Enrollment Profiles for prior years and mine the data for the percentage of students “Under 18,” you obtain the following figure:

Interestingly, the percentage of students Under 18 has increased from 6.0% in Fall’05 to 16.6% in Fall’14, which corresponds to an increase of 177%! What can explain this trend?

Some New Entering Freshmen (NEF) enroll in college before they are 18 years old, so an increase in the numbers of NEF might explain the increase in the percentage of students under 18. The following figure shows the number of NEF from Fall’09 through Fall’14:

From 2,390 in Fall’09 to 1,682 in Fall’14 is a decrease of 710 NEF and corresponds to a 29.7% decline, which if anything should decrease the percentage of students under 18. Clearly, the number of NEF cannot explain the growth in the percentage of students under 18.

As part of the Post Secondary Enrollment Option (PSEO), in a program called Concurrent Enrollment (CE) [or Senior to Sophomore (S2S) at SCSU], high school students can receive college credit for their high school classes. The following figure shows the number of high school students enrolled at SCSU during fall semester.

The growth from 1,501 in Fall’07 to 3,300 in Fall’13 is a growth of 1,799 students and represents a growth of 119.9%! Since most high school students are under 18 at the beginning of fall in their senior year, this likely accounts for the increase in the percentage of students under 18.

It is also interesting to note that this program is not limited to high school seniors; currently students in grades 10 and 11 are also eligible to participate. Additionally, legislation currently before the Minnesota Legislature this legislative session seeks to expand the program to include students in grade 9. It’s quite likely all of the 9th, 10th, and 11th grade students would be under 18. As a result, any expansion of the CE program will likely lead to an even larger percentage of SCSU students under 18.

In the First HUSKYDATA Newsletter released last fall, one of the points made was that the enrollment is reported at three different times during the semester: The 10th Day, the 30th Day, and the End of Term. It was also pointed out that the enrollment increases from the 10th Day, the 30th Day, and the End of Term as illustrated by one of their figures reproduced below:

Here’s the link for the HUSKYDATA Newsletter.

The later enrolling students come principally from three sources. Some classes only meet part of the term, some graduate classes do not start at the beginning of the semester, and some of the high school students receiving college credit for high school classes (CE). The largest of these by far is the category of high school students. The largest increase comes between the 10th day enrollment and the 30th day enrollment. Although hard to clearly see in the figure, in Fall’13, the increase from the 30th Day enrollment (orange) to the Final enrollment (grey) looks to be about 600 students. Not to be accused of inflating the numbers let’s say the increase is 500 students. Assuming that all of these students were under 18, it would add 500 to the number of students for Fall’13 under 18 (2,603) bringing the total to 3,103 and increase the total number of students for Fall’13 (16,245) to 16,745. As a result, for Fall’13, the percentage of students under 18 now increases from 16.0% to 18.5%.

While this might at first seem to be a small increase, an increase of 2.5% for the percentage of students under 18 for Fall’14 would push the number over 20% of the students on campus during fall semester. Since these students are receiving college credit for courses in their high schools, many of them do not set foot on the SCSU campus. As a result, since 1 out of 5 students is really not on the SCSU campus, it is easy to understand why the growth from 6% to 20% would lead to a large number of empty classrooms on campus and triggered the administration to discuss reducing the campus’s ‘footprint.’

Is anyone going to argue that most 9th, 10th, and 11th graders are really doing college-level work in their high schools? When you recognize the financial incentives for parents to have their children participate in concurrent enrollment, it won’t be long before almost all high school students graduate from high school with a high school diploma and a two-year AA degree. In fact, most colleges and universities finish their spring terms before the end of the high school year, these dual degree students will actually graduate with their AA degree BEFORE receiving their high school diploma!

What seems like a pretty good deal for students and parents—essentially two years of free college tuition has financial consequences for four-year universities that are devastating! Essentially, at the university, CE amounts to as much as a 90% discount in what is charged for students. As a result, parents will ‘encourage’ their children to take advantage of this cost savings. As a result, traditional first-year college students will become nearly extinct! Given this kind of an economic disincentive for universities, it’s not likely that the traditional university will survive this kind of economic challenge.

Organisms must adapt or die. Much the same thing can be said about organizations. In SCSU’s case however, since SCSU is the second largest MnSCU University participating in concurrent enrollment, SCSU is essentially hastening its own demise under the guise of “change.” As a result of increasing numbers of students earning AA degrees while in high school, the traditional four-year university will be reduced to largely teaching the final two years with large numbers of ‘transfer’ students and a few traditional freshmen. Who says change has to be good?

Conn Carroll’s article is frightening. Check this out:

White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest confirmed Monday that President Obama is “very interested” in the idea of raising taxes through unilateral executive action.

“The president certainly has not indicated any reticence in using his executive authority to try and advance an agenda that benefits middle class Americans,” Earnest said in response to a question about Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) calling on Obama to raise more than $100 billion in taxes through IRS executive action.

“Now I don’t want to leave you with the impression that there is some imminent announcement, there is not, at least that I know of,” Earnest continued. “But the president has asked his team to examine the array of executive authorities that are available to him to try to make progress on his goals. So I am not in a position to talk in any detail at this point, but the president is very interested in this avenue generally,” Earnest finished.

The thought that President Obama “has asked his team to examine the array of executive authorities” on raising taxes without congressional approval is proof that he’s either a scofflaw or he isn’t the constitutional scholar he claims he is. Here’ the text of the heart of Article 1, Section 7:

SECTION. 7. All Bills for raising Revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives; but the Senate may propose or concur with Amendments as on other Bills.

Article 1 of the Constitution deals exclusively with the Legislative Branch’s authorities and responsibilities. Here’s the only time anyone from the executive branch is mentioned in Article 1:

Every Bill which shall have passed the House of Representatives and the Senate, shall, before it become a Law, be presented to the President of the United States; If he approve he shall sign it, but if not he shall return it, with his Objections to that House in which it shall have originated, who shall enter the Objections at large on their Journal, and proceed to reconsider it. If after such Reconsideration two thirds of that House shall agree to pass the Bill, it shall be sent, together with the Objections, to the other House, by which it shall likewise be reconsidered, and if approved by two thirds of that House, it shall become a Law. But in all such Cases the Votes of both Houses shall be determined by Yeas and Nays, and the Names of the Persons voting for and against the Bill shall be entered on the Journal of each House respectively. If any Bill shall not be returned by the President within ten Days (Sundays excepted) after it shall have been presented to him, the Same shall be a Law, in like Manner as if he had signed it, unless the Congress by their Adjournment prevent its Return, in which Case it shall not be a Law.

Every Order, Resolution, or Vote to which the Concurrence of the Senate and House of Representatives may be necessary (except on a question of Adjournment) shall be presented to the President of the United States; and before the Same shall take Effect, shall be approved by him, or being disapproved by him, shall be repassed by two thirds of the Senate and House of Representatives, according to the Rules and Limitations prescribed in the Case of a Bill.

If it took President Obama’s team more than 15 minutes to determine “the array of executive authorities that are available to him” for unilaterally raising taxes, then they’re illiterate.

A first-year law student knows that the Executive Branch doesn’t have any authority to raise taxes, especially unilaterally.

The thought that a Democrat US senator sent President Obama a letter “imploring the Obama administration” to raise taxes through executive action is proof that Democrats hate the Constitution. President Obama’s overreaches have repeatedly gotten shot down unanimously by the Supreme Court. Meanwhile, Democrats have sat quietly on the sidelines without dissenting.

The Democrats’ silence is deafening.

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Nicole Helget’s blog is getting attention. It’s getting under MnSCU’s skin, not to mention under Annette Parker’s skin:

On Thursday, a group calling itself Minnesotans United for Higher Ed, published similar allegations against another college president, also unnamed, with numerous examples of what it calls “intellectual fraud.” “We’ve uncovered two academically dishonest presidents, and there are more,” said Nicole Helget, a former South Central teacher and spokeswoman for the group. If the pattern continues, she said, “MnSCU will be the national laughingstock of higher education.”

MnSCU issued a brief statement Friday, saying: “We fully support all our outstanding presidents. It is disappointing that people with unknown motivations and a blog can repeatedly level baseless and reckless accusations against people they don’t like until they get the attention they seek.”

Others say that the allegations should be taken seriously. “It is an understatement to say that Annette has ‘borrowed heavily’ from our work,” said University of Richmond professor Jeffrey Harrison, co-author of an article Parker is accused of plagiarizing, in a written statement after reading the blog. “Nobody with her background and training could have engaged in such gross misconduct innocently.”

MnSCU’s statement shouldn’t be taken seriously. Talking about “our outstanding presidents” at a time when 11 of MnSCU’s institutions have to submit plans to fix their schools’ finances is foolish. If these colleges have outstanding presidents, why are their colleges in such dire financial shape? But I digress.

Here’s the heart of the Strib’s article:

In one example, Parker wrote: “More loosely formed partnerships also may be formed for strategic reasons such as the American Booksellers Association, a non-profit trade association that represents the owners of independent bookstores (Barringer & Harrison, 2000).”

The original source, the blog shows, appeared in the Journal of Management in 2000 with much the same wording: “More loosely coupled alliances may be formed for similar strategic reasons. For example, the American Booksellers Association is a not-for-profit trade association that represents the owners of independent bookstores.”

Harrison, who co-authored the 2000 article, said that it’s not unusual for academics to “paraphrase a couple of paragraphs” and credit each other. “However, in my opinion Annette has gone far beyond what is acceptable … she did not use quotations where she should have, and it appears that she did not even include citations for much of what she took from our article.”

MnSCU’s statement of support is worthless in light of this specific example of President Parker’s use of similar phrasing in her dissertation.

“We support all our outstanding presidents” doesn’t mean anything when the accuser presents irrefutable proof of a president’s plagiarism. At that point, “We support all our outstanding presidents” sounds more like spin than anything.

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