UCB: The Harrison Bergeron School of Mathematics

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Re: UCB: The Harrison Bergeron School of Mathematics

Post by hammegk » Mon Oct 19, 2015 1:49 am

Dancing dancing

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Re: UCB: The Harrison Bergeron School of Mathematics

Post by Doctor X » Mon Oct 19, 2015 1:56 am

Doctor X wrote:
Doctor X wrote:Image

Dance My Racist Cunt Bitch!

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Re: UCB: The Harrison Bergeron School of Mathematics

Post by hammegk » Mon Oct 19, 2015 2:15 am

Tipity tap. Kewl.

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Re: UCB: The Harrison Bergeron School of Mathematics

Post by Anaxagoras » Mon Oct 19, 2015 3:17 am

corplinx wrote:BLOWING THE WHISTLE ON THE UC BERKELEY MATHEMATICS DEPARTMENT

http://alexandercoward.com/BlowingTheWh ... atics.html
In a nutshell: Stop making us look bad. If you don't, we'll fire you.
Don't know much about the situation but maybe we should be a little skeptical since we're only hearing one side here. I'll note that the most popular teacher with students may not always be the best teacher. In the high school I went to we had a teacher who was popular because he liked to crack jokes and let students get away with shit. His classes were fun and easy. Getting a good grade was easy. Was he the best teacher? Students might have said so, but did they really learn as much as with the hardasses?
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Re: UCB: The Harrison Bergeron School of Mathematics

Post by Doctor X » Mon Oct 19, 2015 3:32 am

Well, indeed. There is also whether or not he fulfilled requirements for publications and the like. Unfortunately, "how good of a teacher you are" is the lowest, weakest, and most ignored rating for tenure.

--J.D.
Mob of the Mean: Free beanie, cattle-prod and Charley Fan Club!
"Doctor X is just treating you the way he treats everyone--as subhuman crap too dumb to breathe in after you breathe out."--Don
DocX: FTW.--sparks
"Doctor X wins again."--Pyrrho
"Never sorry to make a racist Fucktard cry."--His Humble MagNIfIcence
"It was the criticisms of Doc X, actually, that let me see more clearly how far the hypocrisy had gone."--clarsct
"I'd leave it up to Doctor X who has been a benevolent tyrant so far."--Grammatron
"Indeed you are a river to your people.
Shit. That's going to end up in your sig."--Pyrrho
"Try a twelve step program and accept Doctor X as your High Power."--asthmatic camel
"just like Doc X said." --gnome

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Re: UCB: The Harrison Bergeron School of Mathematics

Post by EvilYeti » Mon Oct 19, 2015 11:23 am

Anaxagoras wrote: Don't know much about the situation but maybe we should be a little skeptical since we're only hearing one side here. I'll note that the most popular teacher with students may not always be the best teacher. In the high school I went to we had a teacher who was popular because he liked to crack jokes and let students get away with shit. His classes were fun and easy. Getting a good grade was easy. Was he the best teacher? Students might have said so, but did they really learn as much as with the hardasses?
I've worked for the University of California since 2002.

Every single complaint registered by this guy is completely true. The PC Police/Unions run the University and anyone that is better than their peers by a statistically significant margin is singled out and punished.

For example, consider the latest Fad from the PC police, "microaggressions".

http://www.thecollegefix.com/post/22839/
“America is the land of opportunity,” “There is only one race, the human race” and “I believe the most qualified person should get the job” are among a long list of alleged microaggressions faculty leaders of the University of California system have been instructed not to say.
Here are other things you are forbidden to say by the Thought Police here:
● “Everyone can succeed in this society, if they work hard enough.”

● “Where are you from or where were you born?”

● “Affirmative action is racist.”

● “When I look at you, I don’t see color.”

These phrases in particular are targeted because they promote the “myth of meritocracy” or represent “statements which assert that race or gender does not play a role in life successes.”
Professor Coward is the perfect example of this. He is not a successful teacher because he's put in the extra effort to be one.

He's a successful teacher because of White. Male. Privilege. And the Patriarchy. Nothing more.

The only thing that is really surprising to me here is that the guy would be fired. So I dug a little deeper and unsurprisingly it turns out that wasn't actually the case (as truth be told its almost impossible for people to actually be "fired" here).

http://www.dailycal.org/2015/10/16/blow ... le-blower/

He was in a contract position and his contract wasn't renewed. I'm sure it was for all the reasons he mentioned, but he still wasn't fired.

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Re: UCB: The Harrison Bergeron School of Mathematics

Post by Anaxagoras » Mon Oct 19, 2015 11:50 am

Fired by another name.
A fool thinks himself to be wise, but a wise man knows himself to be a fool.
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Re: UCB: The Harrison Bergeron School of Mathematics

Post by EvilYeti » Mon Oct 19, 2015 11:59 am

Anaxagoras wrote:Fired by another name.
It really isn't. Especially not legally.

Lectures don't get their contract renewed for any of a number of reasons. This guy chose to "rock the boat" before he had tenure and lost. That's life.

Edit: I'm not surprised he didn't get his contract renewed, btw.

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Re: UCB: The Harrison Bergeron School of Mathematics

Post by Anaxagoras » Mon Oct 19, 2015 12:27 pm

The effect is the same. The legal disctinction isn't what I'm talking about. More and more often these days the only sort of work available is contract work. Makes it easy for employers to fire people except they don't call it firing. If the coach of an NFL team has his contract expire and the team decides to not offer him a new one, we call that a firing. Legally it may be different but in common parlance it's fair to call it that.
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Re: UCB: The Harrison Bergeron School of Mathematics

Post by EvilYeti » Mon Oct 19, 2015 1:20 pm

Anaxagoras wrote:The effect is the same. The legal disctinction isn't what I'm talking about. More and more often these days the only sort of work available is contract work. Makes it easy for employers to fire people except they don't call it firing. If the coach of an NFL team has his contract expire and the team decides to not offer him a new one, we call that a firing. Legally it may be different but in common parlance it's fair to call it that.
I've been working with contractors for twenty years. Believe me, there is a very real distinction between a contractor being "fired" (re: terminated) vs. simply not renewing their contract. For example, consider an IT contractor that is hired on a six month contract to finish some big deployment. He finishes in four and then spends two months training the existing dev-ops team how to manage any issues that come up.

At the end of the six-month period his contract is not renewed. In fact, its not renewed because he did an excellent job and there is nothing left to do. Saying someone in this situation was "fired" makes about as much sense as saying your mechanic was fired when you picked up your car.

Contrast with a contractor that is fired for sexually harassing an employee, hacking or theft. HUGE difference.

I will admit that there is a gray area in-between where a contractor will not have their contract renewed because their performance isn't satisfactory. Which is fine and TBH that usually isn't the contractors fault either. In the cases I've witnessed the customer always had unrealistic expectations (which is common in IT). There are also cases of layoffs due to changes in the market, which also is not the employee's fault.

tl;dr Being fired is your problem. Being laid off is your employers. In this case, its pretty clear the UC fucked up. ***BUT*** there is no change without sacrifice and its possible some good will come of this.

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Re: UCB: The Harrison Bergeron School of Mathematics

Post by hammegk » Mon Oct 19, 2015 1:31 pm

He was Harrison Bergeroned.

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Re: UCB: The Harrison Bergeron School of Mathematics

Post by EvilYeti » Mon Oct 19, 2015 2:03 pm

Anaxagoras wrote:If the coach of an NFL team has his contract expire and the team decides to not offer him a new one, we call that a firing.
That is because they are all under contract.

Btw, even tenured faculty can be "fired" if their behavior is considered illegal:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/07/0 ... 07226.html

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Re: UCB: The Harrison Bergeron School of Mathematics

Post by Anaxagoras » Mon Oct 19, 2015 10:27 pm

EvilYeti wrote:At the end of the six-month period his contract is not renewed. In fact, its not renewed because he did an excellent job and there is nothing left to do. Saying someone in this situation was "fired" makes about as much sense as saying your mechanic was fired when you picked up your car.
Well that's an actual contractor: someone hired to do a specific job which, when complete, the job is done.
A math lecturer is different. Same with a football coach. There will always be more students to teach.

If not renewing your contract means they have to hire someone else to take your place, that means it's a firing. If not renewing the contract is because there is no more job to do, that's different.
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Re: UCB: The Harrison Bergeron School of Mathematics

Post by EvilYeti » Mon Oct 19, 2015 10:49 pm

Anaxagoras wrote: If not renewing your contract means they have to hire someone else to take your place, that means it's a firing. If not renewing the contract is because there is no more job to do, that's different.
Read the text of the complaint. The culture is researchers that suck at teaching and the addition of a dedicated lecturer was controversial to begin with. So he's not being replaced with another full-time lecturer. They are just going back to business as usual and hiring someone that will do as they are told, publish some papers and stick to the standard textbook/program. They are not going to hire a full-time lecturer as a replacement.

That he was both wildly popular with the customers and hated by the management is par for the course here. The UC does things both correctly and incorrectly with equal thoroughness.

Similar things have happened in my career, where I was laid off after working 60-80 hour weeks busting my ass trying to save a sinking ship. In all cases, I was not replaced. Nothing got done and and business/project/organization failed. I wasn't "fired" in any sense of the word; especially given I was allowed to collect unemployment insurance.

Edit: I understand that the professor used the term "fired". I've read more about the case and I'm unable to get a precise picture of what exactly happened, as the University isn't commenting. I'm not sure whether was actually terminated (fired), or just isn't having his contract renewed. If its the latter that happens all the time and isn't even the first time it has happened to him. The competition for tenure-track faculty positions is absolutely nuts.

http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2015 ... pus-battle

Edit: Btw, this is the same guy that continued to teach during a strike by University employees, so that didn't do him any favors with his management either.