Please forgive the brevity of today's post. My academic responsibilities were particularly consuming on Sunday. No, I didn't watch the f'n Oscars.

I am tickled by the There Are No Conservatives in Academia trope (a.k.a. the reason David Horowitz still gets work that does not involve a boombox and the curb outside a train station). The idea that there is an ideological litmus test for this profession is…well, if you're not in it, it's hard to understand just how idiotic that is. But I suppose D-Ho is anxious to latch onto any possible explanation for why no one takes him seriously. Otherwise he'd have to hold himself responsible – you know, like right-wingers are always telling everyone to do.

The Chronicle of Higher Ed chimed in with an interesting piece recently about the efforts to lure more conservatives into this low-paying, high-effort, thankless profession. Hmm, I wonder why people who only care about money and are, as a group, ragingly anti-intellectual aren't jumping at these jobs? It's quite a mystery. Anyway, we're apparently one step away from instituting affirmative action for conservatives (mmm, delicious irony) but for now universities will simply have to make some structural accomodations in order to lure conservatives who are more attracted to the higher salaries of law, business, and the private sector. My favorite quip:

The research led the Woessners to conclude that if higher education wants to attract more conservatives to the professoriate, it should smooth the way financially, offering subsidized health insurance and housing for graduate students, and adopting family-friendly policies for professors.

In short, right-wingers will find grad school more appealing if they are provided with the kinds of things that their ideology rails against for everyone else. That's rich – shying away from a profession unless it offers state-subsidized housing, state-subsidized health insurance, and official recognition of the unique needs of one's lifestyle. How very Republican.

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  • That really is pretty funny.

    I don't know if you caught any of the times Al Franken skewered Horowitz, but they were pretty funny – especially when Horowitz got caught outsourcing some of his "research," which, surprise, surprise, was wrong. I wish Berube was still blogging fuil time just for his Horowitz takedowns. And there's the time Horowitz was on Larry King, trying to defend Ann Coulter as a serious intellectual or something like that, and everyone started laughing at him, and even Horowtiz couldn't keep a straight face.

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