So you would think that the folks on the faculty of the University of California would have some connection to reality. Even though they spend their entire life trying to argue that the world should just let them putter around in their labs or libraries, noodling around some intriguing concept, they should be smart enough to be able to put aside that dreamy vacation from reality. Alas, it seems that all of the stereotypes about faculty members are even more true than we thought.
Let’s take a look at the UC Berkeley Faculty Ass. Talking Points and mediate on them a bit. Here’s what I get:
- Money is bad and the administration is obsessed with it.
- Money is good when it’s called “public funding”, but this is being “eroded” despite the fact that perhaps it’s gone down by 10% or so.
- We don’t talk about increased expenditures even though they’re up by more than 50% in the same time period. (See)
- But we do talk about the importance of “research” whatever that is.
- And let’s point out that science needs even more “research” which is the same as “money” but we don’t use that word because it’s bad. We just say that the public should want and support more “research”.
- We don’t want the public to think that someone could actually do research with just a pencil and paper. When we talk about “research” we’re really talking about “money” but we don’t want to seem crass or like the administration.
- We don’t talk about the thousands of UC employees making more than $200k per year.
- Let’s just talk about salary inequality between the young faculty and the older ones. If we focus on the few that are being given the shaft, we can hope that the reader will just assume that the entire faculty is being shafted.
- Somehow we believe that collecting just $40 per taxpayer will make it all okay. (BTW, that’s $40 more than the taxpayer already gives.)
- No matter what anyone says, we never believe that spending more time with the undergraduates is a good thing. No sir ee.