Inconvenient News,
       by smintheus

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

  How the mighty have fallen

Former Attorney General and White House Counsel, Alberto Gonzales, helped to preside over a great many crimes as a flunky in the Bush administration. Who'd have thought, that scandalous record along with his scrumptiously perforated memory eventually made Gonzales nearly unemployable after he was pushed out of office in 2007. The best he's been able to turn up have been very small, temporary jobs.

Now he's found another temporary employer, Texas Tech. Despite Karen Tumulty, it appears pretty obvious that the University is less than eager to draw attention to its association with Gonzales.

As Texas Tech announced in a July 7 press release, Gonzales will be advising them on a "minority student leadership training and development program" and teaching a single undergraduate course this fall in the Political Science Department. It's a department with around 45 graduate students, so the assignment of an undergraduate course to Gonzales speaks volumes about how he's viewed by the faculty.

Remarkably, the people quoted by the University press release do not include the PoliSci chairman or any of the department's faculty. A reporter at the Austin American-Statesman who broke the story on the 7th did obtain a statement from someone inside the department, but it was a staff member and merely confirmed that Gonzeles was teaching a single course.

His appointment as a temporary/part-time 'visiting' professor very probably did not require any vote by the department's faculty – and one suspects that is how Gonzales managed to get it. It looks like a decision made at the upper levels of the administration and more or less imposed on the PoliSci Department. Nothing about Gonzales' appointment nor the undergraduate course he's teaching appears anywhere on the department's website.

Apparently the appointment was made in a way to evade attention as much as possible. The University released the information only after the Austin reporter had pried it out:

In a press release issued hours after I inquired, the university said that as of Aug. 1, Gonzales will join the Texas Tech University System...

If the decision to hire Gonzales was made at all recently, it smells as if the Texas Tech administration wanted to do it while most of the faculty were away from campus during the summer. There will be no faculty meetings for several months, at which resistance to the Gonzales appointment might have been organized or complaints expressed.

The University press release does not acknowledge that any controversy at all exists regarding Alberto Gonzales.

crossposted at

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  • Mr. Gonzales will lecture at Tech on his area of expertise, Fluid Mechanics of Waterboarding.


    By Anonymous Mike Licht, at 1:45 AM  

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