Friday, May 08, 2015

Yes, Virginia, I write op-eds ...

"I read the editorial in the Statesman Journal when having coffee in the morning.  We get the paper at home" said the colleague.

Like that colleague, there are many more faculty and staff colleagues who get the paper at their homes, I am sure.  And there are also others who read the paper online, even if they aren't subscribers.

So, how come I never ever get any response to any of my op-eds in that paper?  Wait, is it because I am not the president?

I didn't want to ask that colleague; it will be some bullshit--no, make that yakshit--response ;)

That was a conversation--no, make that phatic communication--two days ago.

Strange is the way the mind works that I was reminded of it today.  Hence, I did what I hadn't done for a long time.  I googled myself!

What a pleasant surprise it was to find out that my latest op-ed that no colleague apparently wanted to respond to was referred to far, far away in another galaxy state--in Virginia.  At the "official blog of @SCHEVResearch at the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia."


I wonder if not getting any response at all is better than that memorable response years ago from a faculty colleague, who was upset about my passing remark in an op-ed.  What was that remark about?

Wait, don't you first want to know what that op-ed was about? ;)

In the op-ed, I wrote about how everybody is quick to criticize waste and inefficiency in government.  Of course, inefficiencies abound.  So what's new!  I argued that there are inefficiencies in the private sector too.  My favorite line (yes, I have my favorites in every op-ed that I write!) was this:
Perhaps it is easy to go after public sector compensation because it is the metaphorical fruit lying on the ground. But, while bending down to pick these up, are we overlooking far plumper fruits in the private sector?
The response I got was not because the left-leaning and "socialist" colleagues were all pumped up about my anti-private-sector op-ed.  No, sir. No, ma'am.

They got pissed off because of the ending there:
Finally, looking at inefficient resource allocations within my own world of higher education, I would rather that we target first the ever-increasing expensive spending for athletics. It is not even news anymore that often college coaches earn far more than corporate CEOs.
But this is a losing battle. After all, even my left-leaning faculty colleagues love sports to the extent of organizing betting pools during "March Madness." I suppose we are stuck with inefficiencies that we don't like!
You see, everything is fine as long as I criticize only the "other" side.

A mass-distribution email resulted in which the colleague wrote ...well, you can read it here.

It is a strange exile in which I work.

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