Friday, December 23, 2005

Just what I wanted!

1. THE ANTI-INTELLECTUALISTS LOSE A BIG ONE. Yes! Like many of the rest of you, I peeked under the X-mas tree (not the "Holiday" tree, the "X-mas" tree) and found that I got exactly what I wanted! --NAMELY: Judge Jones' marvelous decision in the Dover school board case.

Bob Park, a U of Maryland physicist, has a wonderful Science/Politics weekly newsletter called "What's New?" (You can subscribe to it for free.)

It comes out on Fridays. In today's edition he reports

INTELLIGENT DESIGN: DOVER DECISION DESTINED TO BE BESTSELLER.
"Our conclusion today," wrote United States District Judge John E. Jones III, "is that it is unconstitutional to teach ID as an alternative to evolution in a public school classroom." You must read 137 pages to get to that line, but it's time well spent. Jones, a conservative Republican appointed by George W. Bush, reviews the "legal landscape" of church-state separation, and then addresses the key question of whether ID is science or religion. He does so, "in the hope that it may prevent the obvious waste of resources on subsequent trials." Science, he observes, "rejects appeal to authority in favor of empirical evidence," whereas, "ID is not supported by any peer-reviewed research, data or publications." Not only does he enjoin Dover schools from teaching ID, he says the parents who brought suit are entitled to damages. That may cool the ardor of other school boards thinking of hopping in bed with the Discovery Institute. In the Senate, Rick Santorum (R-PA), who had earlier praised the Dover School Board for "teaching the controversy," was so moved by the Jones decision that he severed his ties to the Thomas Moore Law Center, which had defended the Board. (My emphasis throughout.)

Bob goes on to say:

Having just read Judge Jones "passionate paean to science," I turned on "Heaven: Where Is It? How Do We Get There," a two-hour special on ABC. The only hard information was that 90 percent of the public believes in it, whatever it is. That's scary, but how could ABC spend two hours on something for which there is no evidence whatever? Easy, have Barbara Walters interview experts, from mega-church evangelist Ted Haggard, who explains Heaven is only for born-again Christians, to a failed suicide bomber in a Jerusalem prison who was certain it's only for Muslims.

Do yourself a favor and subscribe to Park's newsletter! He's often funny and always tough-minded.
What's New?

2. ONWARD CHRISTIAN SOLDIER: TOM FUENTES' FAREWELL SPEECH ('04). You might be interested in reading Tom Fuentes' "farewell" speech of March 14, 2004--when he stepped down after twenty years as chairman of the local GOP. To read the whole speech, go to SoCal Law Blog:
Farewell to Fuentes

Here are some brief excerpts:

Now, some have asked me what is it that gives me most joy in twenty years as Chairman of this County Party. It is a little thing. It is the fact that anywhere in this county, whenever Republicans gather, we begin our time together with prayer. You may pray in your way, and I may pray in mine, but, my friends, Republicans in this county always acknowledge a power higher than ourselves as did our Founding Fathers. And, the values, principles, and ideals that flow from the acknowledgement of the divinity, guides our conservative social agenda. It gives us pause to reflect on what is really important in life and society. It motivates us to defend causes that are so critical in the cultural war that today engulfs our nation and its society. Because you have allowed me to serve as your Chairman, I have been able to enjoy the opportunity to give encouragement to countless young activists to become involved in the leadership of our party.
.....
No matter how strong the winds blow from the left in places like San Francisco and Hollywood, you my friends, are committed to a higher and nobler calling. I want to thank President Bush for his kind appointment of me to his Administration. I greatly enjoy my current service in Washington, D.C. and around the nation, on the Board of Directors of the Legal Services Corporation. With an annual budget of some $350 Million, our task is to provide equal access to justice in America.
.....
In 1984, when I first spoke as the newly elected Chairman of our County Party, it was 150 years after my great, great, great grandfather arrived in Orange County in 1834. He walk[ed] north from Old Mission San Juan Capistrano through this land that you and I call home. Today, now in 2004, it is 170 years since his arrival and his walking. My colleagues, I want you to know that I will continue to walk with you, to visit our neighbors, and to welcome them into our party. Thank you very much.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

“Good people” vs. Bad people

As you know, Trustee Tom Fuentes, along with notorious Christian Reconstructionist Howard F. Ahmanson (see ARCHIVES: 11/30/05)—is on the Board of Directors of the “Claremont Institute," an eccentric neoconservative think tank. (See Wiki on CLAREMONT INST.)

Today, at the CI website, I ran across an April 2005 interview of Fuentes by CI's Ken Masugi. For those of you who are interested in Mr. Fuentes’ politics—especially his views on teachers at public institutions—the interview is worth reading. Otherwise, I’d skip it.

I have provided brief excerpts below. To read the entire interview, go to

http://www.claremont.org/projects/
local_gov/Newsletter/fuentesinterview.html


Or click on:

INTERVIEW

THE MASUGI INTERVIEW (Excerpts):

Tom, …What is the California Dream? Is it in danger, or simply changing?
…..
My great-great-great grandfather arrived in San Diego aboard a ship from Mexico in 1834. He was born aboard another ship that came from Spain in 1810. Both he, and his parents before him, suffered hardships and trials so that he could reach this magnificent place we call California….

Today, I see ever growing government and more restrictions on our freedoms as Californians. Our state capital is infested with special interests and the average Californian has to pick up the tab to support the government and special interest elites…We need less government in California, not more….

California was the place from which came Proposition 13 and Ronald Reagan. This state gave to the nation a conservative agenda of reform. I hope that vision is not lost.

How does the November [2004] Republican victory nationwide reflect on the American/California Dream?

I liked the county-by-county, red versus blue map of the nation that was published after the election. It showed that most of California is red. That is to say, most of the communities of our state voted for President Bush. The Kerry victory in California came from the blue urban core areas.

I believe that the map demonstrates that the good and morally motivated people in most of California's towns and communities share common values with the vast majority of their countrymen.
…..
Is California out of step on moral issues that many cite as giving Bush the edge over Kerry and the Democrats in the last election?

I think that most Californians are good people who share noble ideals.

On the other hand, California is home to Hollywood and its violence and vulgarity…..

Are there…things you liked about [Governor Schwarzenegger’s recent] speech?

I am impressed by the Governor's candor in identifying the government worker labor unions, especially the teachers, as key elements of the problem [of over-spending]. The entitlements of money and benefits, especially retirement, will eventually bankrupt California if not soon checked.
…..
Your career has been marked by devotion to following principle and at the same time expanding the base of the party. What advice can you give to young politicians and those who are cynical about politics and how to match principle and electability?
…..
The Republican Party must outreach with a conservative message. Nationwide, the campaign found success in reaching Hispanics and Catholics, for example. In 2004, Catholic support for Bush was up to 52%--six points higher than in 2000….

But reaching these constituencies in California will be a real challenge. The state party today is in the hands of moderates, not conservatives. Many from big business, and moneyed moderates, do not want to encourage a more conservative party.
…..
On what local government issues should Republicans consider uniting? How should conservatives link local issues to state and national ones?

I have the privilege of serving as a trustee of a large community college district. As a local elected official, I am always amazed at how often local elected officials, who are registered Republicans, forget conservative ideals in their local decision-making. I know many a local elected official who has never met a new government program he or she did not like. We must teach what it is to be a conservative to those who serve in city, county and school posts.

As an example, the labor unions are as aggressive in the cities and school districts, as they are in Sacramento. I see self-identified Republican city council members and school trustees voting for outlandish salaries, retirement benefits and entitlement programs for public employees with little regard for the taxpayer. I see property rights challenged by these same people.


Tell us about your work for the Claremont Institute in its new Orange County Office.

I am delighted to be serving the Institute at its new offices in Newport Beach. Orange County has always had a warm spot in its heart for The Claremont Institute. The Institute has so many able and articulate scholars. I want to help get out their message to the people of Southern California and to recruit neighbors to support the work of the Institute in sharing the message of the American Founding in our contemporary political life. We have begun to have some fine showcase events to get more exposure for the work of the Institute. It's an exciting time. [END]

NOTES

1. I added the italics. --CW

2. Thomas L. Phillips of Phillips International is on Claremont Institute's board of “advisors.” See ARCHIVES: 9/23/02.

3. In the interview, Fuentes argues for the need to engage in state redistricting to make political races more competitive. Evidently, the Rose Institute of Claremont McKenna has produced studies that support such a reform. Eric Norby--who was appointed by the Board to replace Dorothy Fortune but who quickly resigned--works for the Rose Institute.

4. Here's a fun fact: one of Claremont Institute's projects is:

Doctors for Responsible Gun Ownership -- "a group of health professionals familiar with guns and medical research, is the antidote to those who twist science to serve a misguided anti-gun ideology."

Don't believe it? Click on the link below:

CI PROJECTS

Monday, December 19, 2005

Cronyism & Mirthulence

As you know, at the last board meeting (Dec. 12), Trustee Tom Fuentes, former Big Cheese of the OC Republican Party, expressed a concern that the faculty hiring process up for approval that night might permit faculty “cronyism.”

Ha! I say "HA!"

That Trustee Tom is pointing the fickle finger of Fuentes at faculty “cronyism” is Ha!-worthy in two big respects—beyond, that is, there being no evidence that cronyism taints our faculty hires these days. (Let me know if I’m wrong about that.)

REASON FOR MIRTH #1: First of all, it is yet another instance of the pot calling the kettle black.

Remember when Supervisor Chris Norby's brother Eric (who works at Claremont McKenna College, which has close ties to the Claremont Institute, on whose Board sits TOM FUENTES [Correction: there may be no connection between CMC and CI]) popped up as the Board’s choice to replace Trustee Dorothy Fortune? Fuentes and his Republican cronies tried to pull a fast one, appointing Norby and setting him up for an easy win in the next election. But our faculty union out-maneuvered the Fuensters and forced a special election, scaring Norby off (hence, Bill Jay).

In an article that appeared in March of 2004 concerning an "envelope" irregularity in that election, the OC Register explained that

The envelope flap [who says Marla Jo isn't funny?] is the latest wrinkle in controversy over who will be the new trustee for the district, which operates Saddleback and Irvine Valley colleges. The election is to replace former Trustee Dorothy Fortune, who moved.

Trustees appointed Eric Norby, chief of staff to his brother, Orange County Supervisor Chris Norby, to fill the position, but faculty and students complained that the process smacked of cronyism. [Yes, CRONYISM.]

They gathered signatures on petitions to trigger a special election--a move that caused Eric Norby to resign, saying he didn't want the stress of running for office.
(OC Register, 5/27/04)

If you're in Tom Fuentes' circle, you have a way of poppin' up now and again in the world of power and politics that I call the Fuentesphere. And, without cronyism, there is no Fuentesphere, and there is no Fuentean Big Cheesery.

Just look in any corner of our benighted district that involves power or money—say, the IVC Foundation (money). Go to its website-- IVC Foundation --where the organization’s Board of Governors is listed. Oddly, many members of the board have close ties to the local and state Republican Party machine.

Why do you suppose that is?

For instance, “Governor” Anthony Kuo, a former IVC student and Mathur apologist, has for years been closely tied to the County GOP. These days, he’s an alternate on its central committee and a leader in the “Young Republicans.”

“Governor” John S. Fleischman served as the Executive Director of the state GOP. Presently, he is the Deputy Director for Public Affairs for the Orange County Sheriff’s Department--that would be Fuentes crony Mike Carona's Sheriff's Department.

“Governor” Adam Probolsky is a long-time Fuentes associate—indeed, he was on hand to orchestrate Fuentes’ “coronation” as Trustee Frogue’s replacement in 2000. (It appeared that he wrote the spontaneous answers that Fuentes gave to the board's questions that night.)

Naturally, Fuentes was hand-picked by some of his Republican cronies on our board. (Prior to Frogue’s resignation, certainly Williams and Mathur, and possibly Wagner, had close ties to Fuentes.)

Former Foundation director William Christiansen served for eight years as the Executive Director of the Republican Party of Orange County.

Then there’s current Foundation Director Al Tello (admittedly, a very nice guy) and Fuentes’ wife Jolene, and—well, you get the picture.

In the Fuentesphere, crony-impacted organizations create prizes for extra-organizational cronies. IVC's Foundation is no exception. Hence, this sort of thing occurs:

IVC press release (4/4/03): Sheriff Mike Carona to be Honored at Irvine Valley College Foundation Awards Dinner...The Board of Governors of the Irvine Valley College Foundation announced today that Orange County Sheriff Mike Carona will be the guest of honor at the annual IVC Foundation Awards Dinner, to be held at the Irvine Marriott Hotel on Wednesday, April 23, 2003 at 5:30 p.m. The theme of this year’s dinner will be “Securing the Future.”

“We are proud to announce that Sheriff Carona will receive our Hometown Hero Award and will be acknowledged for his contribution to the community,” said Board Chairman Duane Cave.


Natch, sleaze-ball Carona is a Fuentes crony. (According to the OC Weekly (10/6/05), these days, Carona is "struggling through embarrassing revelations about his incompetence, connections to felons, fund-raising irregularities and a sordid mess involving an alleged series of extramarital affairs....")

REASON FOR MIRTH #2. Our Board—or at least it’s various incarnations of the conservative “Board Majority”—has often been accused of cronyism. For instance, who can forget Matt Coker’s colorful description of our board?:

Anyone who has attended meetings of local boards…is used to the superfluous public ass-kissing elected officials give one another. Taking such manufactured passion to new depths is the South Orange County Community College District board of trustees, which governs Saddleback and Irvine Valley colleges. At a recent meeting, board president Don Wagner paused at one point to congratulate trustee Tom Fuentes for being re-elected to a 10th term as Orange County Republican Party chairman. Fuentes had earlier toasted fellow trustee John Williams for being sworn in as Orange County’s new public administrator—the part-time elected official who oversees conservancies for feeble-minded folks who can’t care for themselves and have no next-of-kin. But what Fuentes did next says a lot about Orange County Republicans, county government and that particular school board: he congratulated fellow trustee Nancy Padberg for being appointed to Williams’ professional staff. The same board awarded a plum district administrative job to the trustee Padberg replaced [namely, Teddi Lorch]—even though her qualifications were questionable. The funny thing...is Williams was first swept into his trustee seat as a reformer who would protect South County taxpayers by ending rampant cronyism on the part of faculty and administrators. Dissident trustee David Lang has long complained of cronyism practiced by Fuentes, Williams, Padberg, Wagner and Dorothy Fortune—Republicans who cast identical votes so often you’d think they trained at the old Soviet Politburo. We would have asked Padberg if she foresees any conflicts, but she was too busy nominating her new boss Williams to a seat on the California Community College Trustees board of directors. (OC Weekly, 3/14/03)

What, one might ask, does Coker mean by referring to David Lang as a “dissident”? Well, before the Langster joined the Fuentes-dominated Board Majority, he could be counted on to point out Board Majority wrongdoing, including BM cronyism.

Back in June of 2000, the Irvine World News ran an article entitled: “David Lang…alleges cronyism in college district.” According to the article,

David Lang...told his colleagues Monday he objects to the continued recruitment of friends and political allies for jobs in the district…The trustee said he was appalled at the lack of ethics he contends is damaging the reputation of the district. “One can only hope we can avoid being dubbed the Tammany Hall community college district,” Lang said.

In the same article, Board Majoritarians such as Don Wagner seemed disinclined to accept the “cronyism” charge, demanding that Lang produce a list of names.

THE POSTER CHILD FOR HIRING IRREGULARITIES:

At the last board meeting, Trustee Fuentes seemed to be concerned about wrongdoing and irregularities in connection with hiring in general. (Something tells me he thinks teachers are lazy and corrupt money-grubbing rat bastards. No?)

Perhaps he is unaware that, for many years, our board was the poster child for hiring process irregularities.

To understand this, you need to go back to the late 90s, before Fuentes entered the picture at SOCCCD. In September of 1997, the selection process that had just yielded Raghu Mathur’s permanent appointment as President of IVC was sufficiently irregular that Trustee Lang was moved to write the district attorney about it. Wrote Lang,

A national search was conducted by the board for a new President of Irvine Valley College. Several internal candidates (including Mr. Raghu Mathur, illegally appointed interim president on April 28, 1997, according to Judge McDonald…) applied for the position along with more than 30 others comprising the initial pool of candidates. In establishing the selection process, the historical method was completely discarded, whereby a screening committee was appointed consisting mainly of the shared governance groups at Irvine Valley College to interview and present to the board the top handful of candidates, with their ratings and recommendations. The current process is a complete “white-wash” since the screening committee neither rates the candidates nor eliminates any candidates, and the entire remaining pool (several applicants [voluntarily] dropped out of the process) of 18 candidates were reinterviewed by the full board of trustees, with no consideration of the committee’s input. The reason the majority of the board prevailed upon the chancellor to adopt the revised process, in my view, was so Mr. Mathur would not be eliminated from the pool. Since I am writing this letter prior to the final candidate interviews, I am predicting that Mr. Mathur will be selected on a 4 - 3 trustee vote to be the next president at Irvine Valley College. It should be noted that during the initial interviews the board majority—consisting of the trustees Frogue, Williams, Fortune, and Lorch—purposely upgraded Mr. Mathur’s raw interview scores while downgrading those of the other candidates to insure his position in the final round. It should be further noted that although my disclosure of same would ordinarily be a closed session matter that I would not be permitted to discuss, both initial trustee interview sessions were also illegal under the Brown Act, due to the fact that the board president failed to open these sessions as public meetings and request public comment before adjourning these meetings to executive session. In summary, the entire appointment process was a complete sham, wasting the time of the entire board and, more importantly, all of the interview candidates. From a letter to Mr. Bruce Moore of the District Attorney’s Office, Sept. 3, 1997


All true. But nothing came of this, of course (the OC DA’s Office is a Fuentespherian nightmare), and the board simply went on to add insult to injury. Six months later (3/26/98), the Irvine World News reported that:

The board of trustees of the South Orange County Community College District voted 4-3 Monday to change district policy on the hiring of administrators.

Trustees Dorothy Fortune, Steven Frogue, Teddi Lorch and John Williams [i.e., the Board Majority] voted for the changes despite recommendations from acting Chancellor Kathleen Hodge…to study the issue further.

The new policy allows trustees to review all candidates for top administrative positions even if they have been eliminated by a screening committee [i.e., the search committee]. Fortune added an amendment to include vice presidents in the policy.

In effect, the board majority made official the controversial actions they took last year in appointing Raghu Mathur as president of Irvine Valley College….


But I kinda like that list idea that Wagner came up with. I think we should ask Fuentes for his list, make 'im hold it up in the air. What do you think?

NOTE: I don't know much about Eric Norby--haven't had time to research him. But it appears that he's smart and that he is some sort of scholar for the Rose Institute at Claremont McKenna. The latter organization does research and, it seems, has provided friendly data or analyses for the movement to redistrict the state. As it turns out, redistricting (to make races more "competitive") is one of Tom Fuentes' big issues. (See Fuentes interview, 12/20/05).

Here are some factoids about his brother, OC Supervisor Chris Norby. Evidently, Chris owes his victory (over C. Coad) to his opposition to the airport (that would associate him with Fuentes, who battled big-money Republican moderates on that issue). He is a long-time opponent of eminent domain, which seems to lead him to oppose all sorts of projects that big-money Republican support (I think). Finally, he's "famous" for suggesting that we rename John Wayne Airport "the OC Airport"--you know, after the popular Fox TV show. He had to recant that one. Norby recently lost a harrassment suit--he lost big. No doubt, he's appealling. Norby seems to have close ties to the Claremont Institute (a neoconservative think tank), on whose board sits Fuentes.

Not so fast! Rethinking fall opening

Today's report  — up again USC reverses robust fall reopening plans, asks students to stay home for online classes LA Times  ...

Invited to IVC—this time a notorious admitted HOMOPHOBE

—Conservative radio host, Michael Reagan


Here at IVC, natch, we have an Accounting Department. It happens to support something called the Guaranteed Accounting Program: GAP4+1.

According to the department website,

This unique pathway program — a partnership between Irvine Valley College (IVC) and Cal State Fullerton (CSUF) — will enable you to graduate with a bachelor’s degree in four years and a master’s degree with one more additional year (thus GAP4+1).

Among the Master's degrees available through the program, we're told, are "Accountancy and Finance; Taxation; or Accountancy."


We're also told that "The number of students accepted into this program in any one year is limited so be sure to apply early."


Great. The early bird gets the worm.


Evidently, the good people of the GAP4+1 program have recently seen fit to invite someone to speak at Irvine Valley College (in late April): Michael Reagan.




The Republican Party of OC just loves IVC (from their website)

That's right. They've invited Reagan family embarrassment Michael, a man of, let's face it, little or no distinction.


He was expelled from his High School and he washed-out of college. Eventually, he went into clothing sales.


In those early years, he made some curious friends:

In 1965, the FBI warned Ronald Reagan that in the course of an organized crime investigation it had discovered his son Michael was associating with the son of crime boss Joseph Bonanno, which would have become a campaign issue had it been publicly known. Reagan thanked the FBI and said he would phone his son to discreetly discontinue the association. (From Wikipedia's Michael Reagan.)

[“F.B.I. agents in Phoenix made an unexpected discovery: According to records, ‘the son of Ronald Reagan was associating with the son of Joe Bonnano [sic].’ That is, Michael Reagan, the adopted son of Reagan and Ms. Wyman, was consorting with Bonanno’s son, Joseph Jr. The teenagers had bonded over their shared love of fast cars and acting tough.” ... "Joseph Jr. was not involved in organized crime, but he was spending time at his father’s home... [I]n October 1964, he had been arrested in connection with the beating of a Scottsdale, Ariz., coffee shop manager. ... Following routine procedure, F.B.I. agents in Phoenix asked agents in Los Angeles to interview Ronald Reagan for any information he might have gleaned from his son. The investigation, after all, was a top priority. But Hoover blocked them from questioning Reagan, thus sparing him potentially unfavorable publicity. Declaring it 'unlikely that Ronald Reagan would have any information of significance,' Hoover instead ordered agents to warn him about his son’s worrisome friendship." - New York Times]

Later, there were legal problems:

In 1981 Reagan was accused, but later cleared of felony violations of California securities laws in court documents. The Los Angeles County District Attorney alleged that Reagan had baited investors into unlawful stock arrangements, and selling stocks despite the fact that he was not legally permitted to do so. The D.A.'s office investigated allegations that Reagan improperly spent money invested by others in a company, Agricultural Energy Resources, he operated out of his house in a venture to develop the potential of gasohol, a combination of alcohol and gasoline. Investigators said they were also checking whether he had spent up to $17,500 of investors' money for his living expenses. The district attorney's office cleared Reagan of both charges later that year. [“The investigators said they became interested in Michael Reagan after being informed that he had steered customers to Mr. Carey {Richard Francis Carey, who "was selling worthless stock,"} had accepted a $4,000 check from one investor, and that, in at least one meeting of potential investors, his relationship to Ronald Reagan had apparently been exploited as a promotional tool for the stock.” - New York Times]
On September 20, 2012, Reagan and two associates were sued by Elias Chavando, a fellow partner, for allegedly withholding Chavando's interest in an e-mail business built around the Reagan.com domain name. In 2015, a Los Angeles Superior Court jury found Reagan liable for conversion and breach of fiduciary duty. Reagan and his business partners were ordered to pay $662,500 in damages.
(From Wikipedia's Michael Reagan.)

Michael tended to smash things (cars, etc.) in his youth. Well into his 40s, he tells us, he was full of "rage" (owing, he explains, to having been molested) and he treated his family badly.


Then, natch, he found the Lord.


Plus, owing to his relationship to his pop, President Ronald Reagan, Michael grabbed the brass ring and became a talk-show host on one or two right-wing radio networks. Blah, blah, blah, he said.


In his latter-day career as mediocre right-wing bloviater and Pious Christian, Michael Reagan has said some unfortunate things:

In April 2013, in a syndicated column, Reagan accused American churches of not fighting hard enough to block same-sex marriage. He wrote that, in regards to arguments supporting gay marriage, similar arguments could be used to support polygamy, bestiality, and murder.

. . . In June 2008, conspiracy theorist Mark Dice launched a campaign urging people to send letters and DVDs to troops stationed in Iraq which support the theory that the September 11 attacks were an "inside job". "Operation Inform the Soldiers", as Dice has called it, prompted Reagan to comment that Dice should be executed for treason. Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting, a liberal/progressive media criticism organization, asked Radio America at the time to explain whether it permits "its hosts to call for murder on the air".

. . . He spoke out in support of profiling in October 2014. In a piece called Profile or Die, he wrote that it would be left to citizens to defend themselves if there were an attack against them by terrorists such as the Islamic State. (Wikipedia)

Golly. It's pretty clear that Michael Reagan is just another "former total fuck-up, now reborn and pious."


Intellectually, he's a low-rent Limbaugh, and that's pretty low.


I mean, when he gets here, just what is he gonna say? That liberals are evil? That his dad was a saint? That freedom and democracy are good? That you oughta put your life in the hands of the Lord? That you don't need to go to college? That homosexuality is a sin?


Only in Bizarro World would Michael Reagan be judged a good speaker to invite to a college.


* * *

Meanwhile, IVC's Guaranteed Accounting Program folks have only wonderful things to say about the fellow:


Michael Reagan

The eldest son of former President Ronald Reagan and one of the most dynamic and sought-after public speakers, Michael Reagan’s commitments to public service and the conservative vision his father championed are second to none, making him the natural heir to the Reagan conservative legacy. Michael serves as chairman and president of the Reagan Legacy Foundation, which seeks to advance the causes President Reagan held dear and to memorialize the accomplishments of his presidency. Michael’s career includes hosting a national conservative radio talk show syndicated by Premiere Radio Networks, championing his father’s values and principles in the public policy forum, commentating and appearing on the Today Show, Good Morning America, Good Day LA, CNN, and Fox News, and contributing to Newsmax Television. Also an accomplished author, Michael has many successful books including On the Outside Looking In, Twice Adopted, and his latest book, Lessons My Father Taught Me.

Well, sure. But he's also the worst kind of insubstantial, opportunistic "celebrity." And he's not an intellectual; he's a propagandist. He's a minor player in our sad era of noisy and loutish conservative anti-intellectualism and demagoguery.


—And he's a homophobe, among other things. Or so he says.


WAY TO GO, GLENN


IVC Prez Roquemore shares Reagan's enthusiasm for the Pussy-grabber-in-chief.

Recent columns by Michael Reagan


ALL IS FAIR IN THE WAR ON TRUMP (Cagle.com) - by Michael Reagan, December 13, 2018

…Hillary continues to skate free, unbothered by the FBI or any federal agency for the dirty things she and the Obama administration’s injustice department did during the 2016 election to try to defeat Donald Trump.

But not General Flynn.

His life was ruined by the FBI bosses who set out to nail him – and did….

TRUMP VS THE CRAZIES (Cagle.com) - by Michael Reagan, January 11, 2019

…Some of the country’s most desperate liberals in the media actually argued that the president’s televised pitch to the country for congressional funding for a stronger border fence should not be carried live by the networks.

Why? Because they said the president lies too much and they wanted to be able to fact-check his speech beforehand….

TRUMP SAYS ‘ADIOS’ TO BIRTHRIGHT CITIZENSHIP (Cagle.com) - by Michael Reagan, November 1, 2018

…Ending birthright citizenship, better known as dropping the anchor baby, is the most significant illegal immigration reform the President Trump has announced. With a single executive order, he unplugs a beacon that attracts scammers from the world over. He also attacks a visible manifestation of the “foreigners first” mindset that has infected the State Department, and the rest of the federal bureaucracy, since the 1960s….

THE PARTY OF EVIL (Cagle.com) - by Michael Reagan, October 11, 2018

…Now, thanks to the Democrats’ ugly smear campaign against Judge Kavanaugh, Republican senators like Susan Collins and Trump spokeswoman Sarah Sanders need security guards 24/7.

It’s not the new Supreme Court Justice who’s evil.

It’s the Democrat Party and the nasty “progressives” who’ve taken it over and are willing to say or do anything or destroy anyone to bring down President Trump.

Maybe this is not something new. Maybe the Democrats have always been this evil….

About Michael Reagan:


A separate peace* (LA Times, August 31, 2004) – by Anne-Marie O'Connor

For years, Michael Reagan, the older son of Ronald Reagan, felt unloved and unwanted. His parents divorced when he was 3. Two years later he was packed off to a boarding school where, he says, he was so lonely he cried himself to sleep. Sexually abused at age 7, he felt shame and self-loathing, compounded by Bible passages that convinced him he would never go to heaven.

He grew up so angry he smashed a childhood bicycle and later took a sledgehammer to his new car. Well into his 40s, his "rage came to a full boil," and he often yelled at his wife and young son.

Then, he says, he found salvation through the love of his family and his "adoption" by God. He embraced conservative values and became a syndicated talk-radio host who today tells listeners: "I am homophobic."….

Roquemore and U of Phoenix

From Clueless IVC Prez Glenn Roquemore smiles as he makes nice with the enemy DtB, 8-26-14

Vice President, Western Region, Workforce Solutions/University of Phoenix, Chuck Parker, President, Irvine Valley College, Dr. Glenn R. Roquemore

Members of the Irvine Valley College community just received this gushing email from the President:

Irvine Valley College Signs Memorandum of Understanding with University of Phoenix

Irvine – Irvine Valley College (IVC) administration, faculty and staff held a formal signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the University of Phoenix, Inc. (University) on Wednesday, August 20, 2014.

Irvine Valley College President Glenn Roquemore said, “This partnership will expand the many transfer opportunities available to the IVC students and staff. One of the major benefits of the MOU is the tuition discount."

Irvine Valley College students transferring to University of Phoenix into an undergraduate baccalaureate degree program … will be considered as having satisfied the general education requirements for the breadth of the liberal arts degree program….

IVC students get 10% off Phoenix tuition, which is way pricey.

Evidently, President Roquemore is not aware that entities such as the U of Phoenix exist to make huge profits by taking advantage of students who typically receive federally insured loans, putting them in serious debt. Those students, upon graduating, typically fail to find the work they were expecting and often default on their loans, forcing the taxpayer to pay. (It's a massive bubble that, one day, will pop.)

You’re fine with all that, are you Glenn? You're a Republican, aren't you? Yeah. I see you smiling with those vets you claim to love!

Alas, the "predatory for-profits" problem is especially egregious in the case of Vets, who pay their way via the new GI Bill:


GI Bill funds failing for-profit California colleges

(Desert Sun)

The ever-clueless Glenn R

Over the last five years, more than $600 million in college assistance for Iraq and Afghanistan veterans has been spent on California schools so substandard that they have failed to qualify for state financial aid.

As a result, the GI Bill — designed to help veterans live the American dream — is supporting for-profit companies that spend lavishly on marketing but can leave veterans with worthless degrees and few job prospects, The Center for Investigative Reporting found.

. . .

Financial records analyzed by CIR show that California is the national epicenter of this problem, with nearly 2 out of every 3 GI Bill dollars going to for-profit colleges.

The University of Phoenix in San Diego outdistances its peers. Since 2009, the campus has received $95 million in GI Bill funds. That's more than any brick-and-mortar campus in America, more than the entire 10-campus University of California system and all UC extension programs combined.

. . .

The school's large share of GI Bill funding reflects more than just the number of veterans enrolling. The programs are expensive. An associate degree costs $395 a credit, for instance — nearly 10 times the cost at a public community college.

The University of Phoenix won't say how many of its veterans graduate or find jobs, but the overall graduation rate at its San Diego campus is less than 15 percent, according to the U.S. Department of Education, and more than a quarter of students default on their loans within three years of leaving school.

Those figures fall short of the minimum standards set by the California Student Aid Commission, which dispenses state financial aid. The commission considers either a graduation rate lower than 30 percent or a loan default rate of more than 15.5 percent clear indicators of a substandard education.

No such restrictions govern GI Bill funds. And nearly 300 California schools that received GI Bill money either were barred from receiving state financial aid at least once in the past four years or operated without accreditation, CIR has found.

. . .

Of the $1.5 billion in GI Bill funds spent on tuition and fees in California since 2009, CIR found that more than 40 percent — $638 million —went to schools that have failed the state financial aid standard at least once in the past four years.

Four of those schools were University of Phoenix campuses, which together took in $225 million….

An Enemy In Common? The Case Against For-Profit Colleges

(Cognoscenti [NPR Boston])

… As Americans, we should all be concerned that veterans are being taken advantage of by unscrupulous profiteers. As taxpayers, we should be aware that we are paying for this disservice. Approximately 85-95 percent of the for-profits’ revenue comes from taxpayer-supported benefits….

For-Profit College Investigation--Is the New GI Bill Working?: Questionable For-Profit Colleges Increasingly Dominate the Program

([Senator] Harkin newsletter)


…Senator Harkin's HELP Committee investigation found:

. . .

  • Most for-profit colleges charge much higher tuition than comparable programs at community colleges and flagship State public universities. The investigation found Associate degree and certificate programs averaged four times the cost of degree programs at comparable community colleges. Bachelor's degree programs averaged 20 percent more than the cost of analogous programs at flagship public universities despite the credits being largely non-transferrable.
  • Because 96 percent of students starting a for-profit college take federal student loans to attend a for-profit college (compared to 13 percent at community colleges), nearly all students who leave have student loan debt, even when they don't have a degree or diploma or increased earning power.
  • Students who attended a for-profit college accounted for 47 percent of all Federal student loan defaults in 2008 and 2009. More than 1 in 5 students enrolling in a for-profit college-22 percent-default within 3 years of entering repayment on their student loans....

Hey-Diddly-Ho, Neighbor!

Oldie but Goodie [2012]: See Senator Harkin’s For-Profit College Investigation: U of Phoenix

Glenn Roquemore, the Pacifica Institute & women's "primordial nature"

Glenn Roquemore, the Pacifica Institute & women's "primordial nature" May 21, 2013

Delivering factoids for

Turkish anti-feminists

Here’s a curious factoid. I came across the following press release, evidently dating back to April of 2008. It was posted by the “Pacifica Institute,” which has a dozen or so offices, including one in Orange County (Irvine):


Glenn R. Roquemore-Irvine Valley College President Speaks at PI - Orange County

Today Pacifica Institute hosted Irvine Valley College President Glenn Roquemore. Before this luncheon forum in Irvine , New Zealand Consul General Rob Taylor and Irvine Mayor Beth Krom were the keynote speakers. Consul General Rob Taylor spoke about Welcoming Diversity as a Path to Peace and Mayor Beth Krom’s topic was How to Create a Balanced Community. Dr Glenn Roquemore’s topic is the Role of Community Colleges in Higher Education.

Dr. Glenn Roquemore is President of Irvine Valley College….

Dr Roquemore gave very important statistics of the Community Colleges in California….

You’ll recall that, in the past, we’ve kidded Roquemore over his tendency to approach speaking always as an occasion to dispense the merest of statistics as though they were astonishing jewels. "Two percent of our students," he'll say, "sport a vestigial tail." Huh?

What’s the matter with ‘im? Dunno.

But just who are these “Pacifica Institute” people?

According to PI’s website,

Pacifica Institute was established in 2003 as a non-profit organization by a group of Turkish-Americans. Pacifica Institute designs and executes projects covering social welfare, education, poverty, and conflict resolution issues in collaboration with scholars, activists, artists, politicians, and religious leaders-communities….

. . .

The Institute seeks to …[engage] in a variety of civic activities and [seeks to invite] others to generate and share insights, thereby removing barriers to confidence-building and trust….

Gosh, it sounds as though that illiterate pseudo-educator, Raghu Mathur, may have had a hand in writing this stuff.

Elsewhere, PI presents “Frequently Asked Questions about Pacifica Institute and Fethullah Gülen.”

One naturally assumes, then, that Mr. Fethullah Gülen and his ideas are important to PI. Sure enough, in the Q&A, Gülen and his movement are central:

Fethullah Gülen

Q: How is the Pacifica Institute involved with the Gülen movement?

A: Some of the founders and donors of Pacifica Institute are participants of the so-called Gülen, or Hizmet movement. Pacifica Institute was inspired by the movement’s philosophy and goals….

. . .

The Gülen/Hizmet movement is a values-driven social movement and following a philosophy that advances interfaith dialog, education and community service as tools to build a better and more harmonious society. The movement was inspired by the philosophy and teachings of Fethullah Gülen, a Turkish scholar, author and advocate….

. . .

Q: Who is Fethullah Gülen?

A: Fethullah Gülen is a Turkish scholar, preacher, thinker, author, opinion leader, education activist, and peace advocate who is considered by many to be one of the world’s most influential religious thinkers. He is regarded as the initiator and inspirer of the worldwide civil society movement, the Gülen Movement, which is committed to education, dialogue, peace, social justice, and social harmony….

Well, I’ve done a little looking, and this Gülen fella is mighty controversial, in some circles at least.

I skimmed a couple of sites, which suggested that Gulen is, among other things, a conservative and a vocal opponent of feminism (although I ask that readers judge for themselves based on his writings--and the writings of his mouthpieces).

So I went to the Fethullah Gülen website. There, I searched the term “feminism” and that brought me to a page with links to various relevant essays, evidently by Mr. Gülen, including The Gülen Movement: Gender and Practice.

I clicked on that. That essay includes this passage:

Although he promotes equality between the sexes, Fethullah Gülen's views on gender can indeed be described as complementary. He sees women and men as having equal value but inheriting different roles and characteristics due to physical and psychological differences. He classifies men as "physically stronger and apt to bear hardship" and women as "more compassionate, more delicate, more self sacrificing" (Gülen 2006: 1). Although he does state that women can be involved in any field of work he idealizes the mother as the pure educator (Gülen 2006: 2) implicitly implying that the man should be the family provider. This may open up for critique on behalf of Western feminists or scholars of religion and gender. According to this relatively new academic discipline[,] gender is a social construction. Human beings are born with different sexes, but social roles and expectations of fulfillment of these are constructed and emphasized by the norms that prevail in society.

Another link takes one to an essay entitled Women Confined and Mistreated. Here are some excerpts:

As a reaction to all the injustice done to women … a movement to claim women's rights emerged, particularly in the West. Even though this movement is considered an awakening of women, it occurred as a reaction and was doomed to imbalance like all other reactionary movements and ended up in extremism. Although the starting point was to defend women, in time it deviated from the original aim to the degree of being full of hatred towards men and to feeling a grudge against them. The movement named feminism, which was born from the idea of protecting women and providing them with rights equal to those of men, has only left behind longing, sorrow, and wreckage as a movement of discontentment….

. . .

According to Islam, women's role in this world is not only restricted to doing the housework and raising children. In fact, as long as it does not conflict with her primordial nature or with observing religious requirements, she is responsible for carrying out the duties that befall her in every area of society and making up for shortcomings where men fall short in social life. However, this reality was ignored in time, even among Muslims; rough understandings and crude thinking upset this system based on women and men's mutual assistance. After this upset, both family life and the social order were also upset. Different peoples' perception of their own historical heritage as a part of Islam, their seeing and reflecting their folklore and traditions as essentials of religion, and making judgments pertaining to this issue at certain periods all resulted in the usurpation of women's rights; they were pushed into a more restricted area day by day, and in some places they were totally isolated from life without consideration of where this issue leads. However, the source of mistaken thoughts and deviations in this matter is not Islam whatsoever. The mistakes belong to those who misinterpret and misapply the religion. Such mistakes in practice must definitely be corrected.

On the other hand, while correcting these mistakes, approaching the issue from a feminist standpoint will upset the balance again and an opposite extremism will replace the former. For instance, just as it is very ugly to see women as merely child-bearing objects and is insolence towards them, it is equally unbecoming and unnatural to build a society where women are unable to bear and bring up the children they wish for, or for a woman to feel a need to rebel against marrying and to avoid bearing children in order to show that she is not a machine. As a woman is not a dirty dish, her place at home is not confined to the kitchen with the dirty dishes. However, a woman who claims to have no household responsibilities and thereby turns her home to a quarters for eating and sleeping is far from being a good mother, a good teacher, and a good spiritual guide to her children.

Besides all this, it is another form of oppression to make women work under difficult conditions, such as mining and road-building. It contradicts human nature to push women into heavy tasks like agricultural manual labor, or military field operations, and other harsh pursuits, just for the sake of proving their equality with men; it is nothing but cruel torture. It shows ignorance of women's qualities and conflicts with their primordial nature. Therefore, just as an understanding which imprisons women at home and takes them completely away from social life is absolutely incorrect according to Islam, likewise, depriving women of financial support, preventing them from bearing and raising children in security, and forcing women into the labor force to do uncongenial work is also oppressive. A woman, like a man, can have a certain job as far as her (and his) physiology and psychology are taken into consideration; but both women and men should know that a good life consists of sharing and division of labor. Each should assist the other by doing tasks in compliance with their nature.

Yikes.

I’m in no position to judge this “take” on feminism relative to the various Muslim communities (e.g., in Turkey) and the possibility of discourse within them. But it’s pretty plain that Gülen’s philosophy, as expressed here, is antithetical to some of the core tenets of Western feminism, broadly understood. It seems clear that Gülen is not likely to gain many adherents or followers among contemporary Westerners, with their commitment to the ideal of equality, as they understand it at least, between the sexes.

The Wikipedia article on Gülen is alarming—if, that is, it can be trusted. It asserts that

...Gülen's views are vulnerable to the charge of misogyny. As noted by Berna Turam, Gülen has argued:

"the man is used to more demanding jobs . . . but a woman must be excluded during certain days during the month. After giving birth, she sometimes cannot be active for two months. She cannot take part in different segments of the society all the time. She cannot travel without her husband, father, or brother . . . the superiority of men compared to women cannot be denied." [35]

Berna Turam, Northeastern

Wikipedia is quoting Berna Turam, a serious academic at Northeastern U. She herself seems to cite a work from 1996 entitled Fethullah Gulen Hocaefendi ile ufuk turu (Aktuel kitaplar dizisi). It is written in Turkish.

One should be careful to note that the superiority that Gülen is discussing is physical, not moral, or at least that's how I read it. Even so, his remarks are mighty offensive, at least to these Western ears.


Gosh Glenn, you really oughta be more careful who you hang out with. Philosophically, these Gülenites are a problem, at least relative to most of our community on these shores.

I'll see if I can shed more light on the Pacifica Institute and what it means for the likes of Glenn Roquemore and Beth Krom (a Democrat) to be hanging out with 'em.

Votes of "no confidence" - 1999

from the Dissenter's Dictionary, Dec. 3, 1999


MATHUR, RAGHU P.



In April of 1997, in an action later judged a violation of the Open Meetings law, the Board Majority appointed chemistry teacher and campus joke Raghu P. Mathur as Interim President of Irvine Valley College. At the time, Mathur had no experience as a full-time administrator. Five months later, through a process that violated board policy, and amid strong faculty opposition, the BM appointed Mathur permanent president. That action, too, was later voided owing to violations of the Brown Act. Two years later, despite his miserable record, which included a vote of no confidence and the palpable contempt of nearly all IVC faculty and staff, the board majority renewed Mathur's contract, giving him a raise and a $200 a month "security stipend."

Mathur was hired as an instructor in 1979, and he quickly established a reputation as a schemer and liar who would stoop to anything in order to secure an administrative position. Owing to his manifest unsavoriness, however, that ambition was consistently thwarted both inside and outside the district.

His intrigues soon gained him the hatred of Ed Hart, IVC's first president. In 1986, Hart retired, and the college adopted a "faculty chair" model, partly for fiscal reasons. Soon, Mathur "ruled" the tiny school of Physical Sciences as its chair. During the "chair" era, he was, without doubt, the chief abuser of that office, engaging in endless machinations while arranging a lucrative schedule that netted him a salary far in excess of the college president's ($124,000 in 1996-7).

During this period, Mathur continued to seek administrative positions. When he was passed over, he played the race card, charging everyone in sight with "discrimination," apparently on the sole grounds that he had not been selected.

Mathur's habit, as chair, of circumventing the governance process eventually yielded an official censure of him by IVC's "Instructional Council' in April of 1994. Earlier, the IC membership had all agreed not to go outside the process--particularly with regard to the selection of the IVC presidential search committee chair. During an IC meeting in March (of 94), Mathur was asked whether, despite the agreement, he had presented a petition, urging the selection of a particular faculty member, to the chancellor. He answered that he had "not forwarded" a petition to the chancellor or anyone. In fact, he had and, apparently on that basis, the chancellor did appoint the faculty member as (co)chair.

When this came to light in April, Mathur was censured. According to the minutes of the April 5 meeting, "Instructional Council had agreed that no one will work outside of the IVC governance structure and agreed-upon processes. They felt that Raghu had lied to the Council...[One member] made a motion to censur Raghu Mathur for lying to the Instructional Council regarding the petition and the presidential search process and for misrepresenting not only Instructional Council, but also the faculty...Raghu Mathur stated that he did not lie to the Instructional Council. He said that he was asked if he had forwarded the petition to the Chancellor and he said he had not. He did admit, however, that he had shown the petition to Chancellor Lombardi...Raghu felt that the members of Instructional Council were making too big of a deal out of the situation...The question was called and the motion passed with 8 ayes, 3 noes, and 4 abstentions."

Classified employees, too, have at times found it necessary to complain about of Mathur's conduct. For instance, in August of 1995, IVC administration received a letter from Leann Cribb, Executive Secretary (and formerly secretary for the School of Physical Sciences), in which she wrote: "Mr. Mathur routinely revises facts and manufactures innuendo to suit his objectives." During the January '98 Board meeting, classified employee Julie Ben-Yeoshua explained that Mathur was the reason she was seeking employment elsewhere: "Since you first appointed Raghu Mathur as the interim president, the atmosphere at IVC has changed drastically; morale is in the gutter...[Mathur's] inability to tell the truth is so natural that I have come to gauge everything he says and writes by believing the complete opposite...."

By the mid-90s, Mathur had come to regard Terry Burgess, then-VP of Instruction, as his nemesis, and, in 1996, he tried to discredit Burgess with the board. In the spring of '96, a student sought to enroll in a chemistry course without enrolling in the concurrent lab, and the matter came before the chair--Mathur. Though the student provided documentation proving that she had done the equivalent work at UCI, Mathur denied the request, whereupon the student asked for a review of the decision by the Office of Instruction. Mathur agreed to go along with the Office's decision.

Later, however, he accused Burgess of signing the student's admittance card despite non-approval by the instructor. Mathur convinced his school to send a resolution of complaint to the board (and also to the senate and the union), appending the student's transcripts, without her permission, an action that violated the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and district policies. When then-IVC president Dan Larios learned of this, he requested an opinion from the district's attorneys regarding the legality of Mathur's action. The opinion, dated March 18, 1996, indicates that Mathur acted improperly, violating FERPA and board policy 5619. Larios was fed up.

Realizing that Larios now planned to deny approval of him as chair of his school, Mathur, as per usual, scrambled to lobby board members for support. On March 29, Larios met with Mathur; he explained that he had lost confidence in Mathur and that Mathur had better "change." In the end, Larios wrote a memo (May 14) expressing his serious reservations about Mathur's leadership, owing to his repeated circumventing of established processes and his violations of board policy, and placed him on probation. If there were any further violations of process, wrote Larios, Mathur would be removed as chair.

In the meantime, Mathur asked the senate to censure Burgess. It declined to do so, citing Mathur's misdescription of crucial facts. Larios, troubled by Mathur's misrepresentations, sent out a memo explaining that Burgess had in no sense acted improperly.

In December of '96, the Board Majority era began, and Larios sensed that it was time to move on. Normally, the VP of Instruction—Terry Burgess--would serve as interim president, but the BM blocked his selection, and, in March, Lombardi was chosen as a sort of compromise. But in April, Frogue presented another one of Mathur's petitions--this time, an “anonymous” petition urging Mathur's selection as president. On that basis, Mathur became IVC president.

Mathur's outrages while president are too numerous to recount here. Suffice it to say that in the early months of 1998, the IVC academic senate instituted a Special Inquiry into “abuses of power.” By April, it became necessary to abandon the investigation, owing to the number and the complexity of the charges against Mathur. Said the committee’s chair: “It’s like bailing water out of the Titanic with a tea cup…Every time we put an allegation to bed, another one jumps up” (Voice, 5/7/98). Soon thereafter, Mathur received a 74% vote of no confidence by his faculty.

Mathur has sought to rule through intimidation, punishing his critics in every way available to him. In early November of 1999, the IVC academic senate released the results of a survey of full-time faculty (78% participated). 90% disagreed with the statement, "I can express my opinion about issues at the college without fear of retribution or retaliation." The 90% figure will likely go up soon, for Mathur intends to fire an untenured instructor--a critic--for his involvement in the act of naming the plot of dirt next to the Life Sciences greenhouse. It was named the "Terry Burgess garden."


Huge Vote Against College Chief (LA Times, May 18, 2004 | Jeff Gottlieb)

Faculty in the South Orange County Community College District overwhelmingly voted no confidence Monday in Chancellor Raghu Mathur.
Of the full-time professors at Irvine Valley and Saddleback colleges who cast ballots, 93.5% voted in favor of no confidence, and 6% were against the union-sponsored measure. One person abstained.
Out of 318 faculty eligible, 246 -- 77% -- voted, according to the district faculty association….

Clueless IVC Prez Glenn Roquemore smiles as he makes nice with the enemy - August 26, 2014

Vice President, Western Region, Workforce Solutions/University of Phoenix, Chuck Parker, President, Irvine Valley College, Dr. Glenn R. Roquemore

○ Members of the Irvine Valley College community just received this gushing email from the President:

Irvine Valley College Signs Memorandum of Understanding with University of Phoenix

Irvine – Irvine Valley College (IVC) administration, faculty and staff held a formal signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the University of Phoenix, Inc. (University) on Wednesday, August 20, 2014.
Irvine Valley College President Glenn Roquemore said, “This partnership will expand the many transfer opportunities available to the IVC students and staff. One of the major benefits of the MOU is the tuition discount."
Irvine Valley College students transferring to University of Phoenix into an undergraduate baccalaureate degree program … will be considered as having satisfied the general education requirements for the breadth of the liberal arts degree program….

○ IVC students get 10% off Phoenix tuition, which is way pricey.

○ Evidently, President Roquemore is not aware that entities such as the U of Phoenix exist to make huge profits by taking advantage of students who typically receive federally insured loans, putting them in serious debt. Those students, upon graduating, typically fail to find the work they were expecting and often default on their loans, forcing the taxpayer to pay. (It's a massive bubble that, one day, will pop.)

○ You’re fine with all that, are you Glenn? You're a Republican, aren't you? Yeah. I see you smiling with those vets you claim to love!

○ Alas, the "predatory for-profits" problem is especially egregious in the case of Vets, who pay their way via the new GI Bill:


GI Bill funds failing for-profit California colleges

(Desert Sun)

The ever-clueless Glenn R

Over the last five years, more than $600 million in college assistance for Iraq and Afghanistan veterans has been spent on California schools so substandard that they have failed to qualify for state financial aid.
As a result, the GI Bill — designed to help veterans live the American dream — is supporting for-profit companies that spend lavishly on marketing but can leave veterans with worthless degrees and few job prospects, The Center for Investigative Reporting found.

. . .

Financial records analyzed by CIR show that California is the national epicenter of this problem, with nearly 2 out of every 3 GI Bill dollars going to for-profit colleges.
The University of Phoenix in San Diego outdistances its peers. Since 2009, the campus has received $95 million in GI Bill funds. That's more than any brick-and-mortar campus in America, more than the entire 10-campus University of California system and all UC extension programs combined.

. . .

The school's large share of GI Bill funding reflects more than just the number of veterans enrolling. The programs are expensive. An associate degree costs $395 a credit, for instance — nearly 10 times the cost at a public community college.
The University of Phoenix won't say how many of its veterans graduate or find jobs, but the overall graduation rate at its San Diego campus is less than 15 percent, according to the U.S. Department of Education, and more than a quarter of students default on their loans within three years of leaving school.
Those figures fall short of the minimum standards set by the California Student Aid Commission, which dispenses state financial aid. The commission considers either a graduation rate lower than 30 percent or a loan default rate of more than 15.5 percent clear indicators of a substandard education.
No such restrictions govern GI Bill funds. And nearly 300 California schools that received GI Bill money either were barred from receiving state financial aid at least once in the past four years or operated without accreditation, CIR has found.

. . .

Of the $1.5 billion in GI Bill funds spent on tuition and fees in California since 2009, CIR found that more than 40 percent — $638 million —went to schools that have failed the state financial aid standard at least once in the past four years.
Four of those schools were University of Phoenix campuses, which together took in $225 million….

An Enemy In Common? The Case Against For-Profit Colleges

(Cognoscenti [NPR Boston])

… As Americans, we should all be concerned that veterans are being taken advantage of by unscrupulous profiteers. As taxpayers, we should be aware that we are paying for this disservice. Approximately 85-95 percent of the for-profits’ revenue comes from taxpayer-supported benefits….

For-Profit College Investigation--Is the New GI Bill Working?: Questionable For-Profit Colleges Increasingly Dominate the Program

([Senator] Harkin newsletter)


…Senator Harkin's HELP Committee investigation found:

. . .

  • Most for-profit colleges charge much higher tuition than comparable programs at community colleges and flagship State public universities. The investigation found Associate degree and certificate programs averaged four times the cost of degree programs at comparable community colleges. Bachelor's degree programs averaged 20 percent more than the cost of analogous programs at flagship public universities despite the credits being largely non-transferrable.
  • Because 96 percent of students starting a for-profit college take federal student loans to attend a for-profit college (compared to 13 percent at community colleges), nearly all students who leave have student loan debt, even when they don't have a degree or diploma or increased earning power.
  • Students who attended a for-profit college accounted for 47 percent of all Federal student loan defaults in 2008 and 2009. More than 1 in 5 students enrolling in a for-profit college-22 percent-default within 3 years of entering repayment on their student loans....

Hey-Diddly-Ho, Neighbor!

Oldie but Goodie [2012]: See Senator Harkin’s For-Profit College Investigation: U of Phoenix