The Radio Equalizer: Brian Maloney

10 December 2004

Bush Supporters Need Not Apply

Is it any wonder that conservatives feel locked out of campus faculty positions? Jack L Goldsmith, a tenured Harvard Law School professor, apparently slipped through the cracks during the PC vetting process. His crime? Supporting the Bush Administration's view of the Geneva Convention. From the Harvard Crimson:

Elizabeth Bartholet ’62, the Wasserstein professor of public interest law, was quoted yesterday in The Boston Globe saying that “the faculty was seriously at fault for not inquiring more deeply, prior to making this appointment, into any role Jack Goldsmith may have played in providing legal advice facilitating and justifying torture.”

In other words, disagreement with Bartholet on her twisted view of treaty interpretations is grounds for rejecting a faculty appointment. More tolerance from the campus left on public display.


  • Your argument is flawed (not to mention hypocritical)since it seems to imply that Universities have no right discriminating against a potential hire based on that person's professed beliefs or "politics."

    I say this is hypocritical because if the University wanted to hire, say, someone from the National Association for Man/Boy Love, you'd probably have a problem with that. For people who believe in human rights, having a law professor on faculty who agrees with the Bush Administration that the Geneva Convention is outmoded and "quaint" would be like having a white supremacist or a NAMBL member on staff. In such cases, the person hasn't "done" anything wrong, but he believes things that a majority of people find (or ought to find) offensive. Same with the law professor who believes the Bush Administration line about the Geneva Convention. The University has a right to hire whomever it wants, based on politics or not.

    By Blogger Matthew, at 13 December, 2004 10:14  

  • The problem with your take is that it's your opinion the administration doesn't respect the Geneva Convention, it's a difference in interpretation of the agreement.

    A child molestor, or one who advocates such a practice, is clearly breaking the law and creating a dangerous physical presence on campus, where there do tend to be children in family student housing or childcare facilities. That person should be prevented from taking a faculty position for safety reasons. It doesn't infringe on academic freedom principles.

    By Blogger Brian Maloney, at 13 December, 2004 12:45  

  • It's not really a matter of opinion. The Geneva Convention outlines specific interrogation tactics that are unacceptable. Our soldiers have violated the Geneva Convention in some instances (Abu Ghraib), and evidence suggests that these moments of laxity in our ideals are a direct result of Bush Administration policy on the handling of prisoners. The President and his counsel simply do not believe the GC applies to us.

    At the very least, the United States commits "torture by proxy" by turning over some detainees to Saudi Arabia or Jordan for "questioning." Frankly, I don't think a law professor who supports such practices has any business teaching law to students, no more than does a white supremacist or a NAMBL member.

    By Blogger Matthew, at 13 December, 2004 13:33  

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