Our school politics is bewildering. First, there is the never-ending war between the theorists and the behaviorists. Then, there is the fight between the Jewish and the Middle East. Finally, there is the whole “DIVERSITY” BS.
But what is really toxic is the duel between the pro-boss and anti-boss camps. Because our boss is appointed rather than elected, he is insecure. Instead of doing his business, he focuses on kissing the top and pitting one camp against the one:
1) Teaching: Increasing the teaching load while others on the campus are reducing it, only because his boss hates the school which has higher market pay.
2) Hiring: We are supposed to hire talents. But now hiring is a political means. We have three lines. Yet all three are chaired by non-experts, who are, not surprisingly, in the pro-boss camp. One even refuses to hold any meeting, because of his speech disability. Top it all, common sense has that universities should focus on research and teaching. Guess what? Our boss prioritizes… DIVERSITY!!!
3) Promotion: Your political orientation is the key. The boss can go out of his way to make or break you:
a) If you are his buddy, you can pocket a million dollars, stay for nine years, without publishing a single paper. (In US research universities, for continuing employment or promotion, juniors must publish certain number of papers in top journals within 6-7 years; otherwise, they must leave.)
b) Or, even if you cannot speak a full sentence, you are still allowed to teach, year after year, if you are his buddy.
I am not sure which crime is bigger.
[Atlanta, June, 2005]