May Open Thread II

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150 thoughts on “May Open Thread II

  1. Does anyone know whether there is any current complaint against Pogge at Yale? Is Pogge being criminally charged with anything or civilly sued?
    The story getting all of the attention now is a federal complaint against Yale. The complaint concerns Yale’s handling of a complaint about Pogge. I don’t think this puts Pogge in any sort of jeopardy – unless Yale changes its mind about its earlier decisions.

    1. Good question. I believe his job is not yet under any threat, though some of his colleagues would like and are working towards that end.The goods Pogge _currently_ stands to lose are all reputational. Well, that and he may forevermore forgo the experience of hot tubbing with young women of color from impoverished countries.

  2. Re: latter part of previous thread.

    Is is just me, or did we used to get a better class of trolls around here?

    1. They’re more diverse now. It used to be bro trolls ranting about Stubblefield, now it’s SJW trolls ranting about Pogge.

        1. Oh that loon is definitely not a SJW, but the “name and shame the predators” trolls definitely are.

  3. Dear moronic science deniers over at Daily Nous, it is actually “a scientific fact that different races have different degrees of intelligence”. At least, it’s a scientific fact that different races have different average IQs, and although “intelligence” is not exactly a term with scientific precision, it has been shown beyond a reasonable doubt that IQ accurately measures something that closely approximates the ordinary usage.

    Is it too much to ask that posturing virtue signalers read around the literature before playing the “debunked racist pseudo-science” card? I suppose it is.

  4. There are other cases of sexual harassment at Yale (philosophy and areas associated therewith) that have not yet come to light publicly.

    1. Jules Coleman, George Bealer and Troy Cross were retired for sexual misconduct. What sexual harassers are left?

            1. It’s going to take more than an acknowledgements footnote to establish that Troy Cross had sexual relations with Amia Srinivasan and Tamar Kreps. Post actual evidence or fuck off.

      1. I want to know if Yale is unique in this regard; or is there a list of philosophers known to be “problematic” for all of the top departments… Rutgers? NYU? Princeton? MIT?

        1. Rutgers: Theodore Sider, when on the faculty, slept with a graduate student, Jill North.
          NYU: Elizabeth Harman, when on the faculty, slept with a graduate student, Alexander Guerrero.
          Princeton: Elizabeth Harman is now tenured at Princeton.

          MIT: ???? someone help us out here

          1. Let’s keep on adding to this list.

            “This re-raises, I would think, the question of how we can share information about known serial harassers… I would like to have information like this for future purposes about other known harassers. I don’t want to invite someone to a conference and then have them harass an attendee. And frankly, I don’t want to attend a conference where there is a harasser and have to potentially face harassment myself.

            Does philosophy need a Sexual Harassment Reference List? An unofficial boycott? Yes, women tell each other stories, but only in a piecemeal way. I am worried about the potential for unfair blacklisting here, but why shouldn’t we have good information when it comes to deciding who to invite and who to associate with? I wish there was information circulated underground, in circles of women philosophers, perhaps with the request that the list *not* be published online to avoid accusations of defamation, etc.?”

            From Anon at Feminist Philosophers: https://feministphilosophers.wordpress.com/2016/05/24/another-pogge-story/#comment-147874

            1. No one replied to Anon’s suggestion of the Sexual Harassment Reference List at FP, but for what it’s worth, I think it’s a good idea. I’d like to hear comments on Anon’s suggestion that it not be published online, though, which is clearly not in line with a list being posted to this blog. What say you about this, commentariat?

              1. What say we about publicly smearing the names of our colleagues in a venue where no fact-checking is to take place, where there’s not even a gesture toward justice or proportionality or harm reduction? Well, I say that anyone who contributes to or advocates such a list is a sack of shit and has no place in the profession. What a disgusting suggestion. Only a crude subhuman would even consider it seriously.

                1. As long as the allegations are true I see no problem posting them here. These sacks of shit deserve to get some heat for this misconduct.

                  1. As long as the allegations are true???

                    First, a major problem is that we have no fucking idea whether they’re true. There is no system of checks and balances here. There are no consequences for lying. There is nobody to investigate the truth of the allegations. Christ, even the names of the people making the accusations wouldn’t be included. That’s outrageous, not to mention in many cases libelous. There are good reasons the shitbags who have done this before caused the other blogs to get shut down.

                    Second, even if the allegations were true, there are good reasons for not broadcasting at least many of them. Not every single infraction of the rule is everyone’s business. That’s where proportionality and utilitarian considerations come in. Again, that affects even the best cases, where there is real knowledge of wrongdoing. But we almost never even have that.

                    This blog should be used for the proper purpose of discussing issues, not spreading gossip. Only pieces of shit spread gossip. One doesn’t need to be intelligent or philosophical or thoughtful. One just has to blab indiscriminately. What fucking scum. Stop it now.

                2. On the other hand, maybe only a crude subhuman would insist that if Person 1 has knowledge that might, if shared, save Person 2 from harm, they should just refuse to tell them.

                  Basically, it’s not as simple as you make it out to be. Of course there are concerns with sharing a list like the one suggested. But there are also concerns about the fact that because these things are kept secret, a whole lot of people get harmed. Think about, for example, the nth victim of a known sexual harasser whose behavior was hushed up. What do you say to the victim? “Sorry, I knew that Known Sexual Harasser was up to this kind of thing. If I’d warned you you probably could have avoided both being sexually harassed and the related fall-out to your career (which quite possibly is now completely derailed). But I didn’t out of concern for the reputation of Known Sexual Harasser.”

                  1. “… if Person 1 has knowledge that might …”

                    Person 1 does not have knowledge. This is the whole point. And given that it isn’t knowledge, it is breathtakingly harmful to the person whom it libels. It is a deliberate attempt to ruin another person’s life.

                    1. It’s too strong to say that person 1 does not have knowledge. What they don’t have is absolute certainty, but then none of those do when it comes to propositions that aren’t logical necessities. But this shouldn’t be the standard. If you think that we should never warn someone about a potential harm unless we are absolutely certain that they will be in danger, then we would never warn anyone of anything.

                      Also, it’s a mistake to say that ‘given they don’t have knowledge, it’s breathtakingly harmful to the person whom it libels’ especially if your standard for knowledge is ‘absolute certainty.’ The harm it causes is independent of whether the claim is true or not. That is, the reputational harm suffered by a person who is alleged to have sexually harassed someone doesn’t vary depending on whether they did it or not – what varies is whether that damage is deserved. The point is just that your mistake is making a blanket claim that no-one should ever publicly allege sexual harassment because there is a chance that the accused is innocent and the reputation of the accused will be damaged. Both these things might be true, but they don’t warrant your claim. Rather, we need to take into account 1. the chance that the accused is innocent, 2. the likely damage to the accused, AND 3. the chance of and severity of harm to potential victims. While it is true that it is ‘breathtakingly harmful’ to someone to be publicly labelled a harasser, it is also, in many cases, ‘breathtakingly harmful’ to be the victim of sexual harassment. And we need to take BOTH these possible harms into account when making a decision. You’re saying that we shouldn’t even take the second kind of harm into consideration when making our decisions, and this is obviously not true.

              2. I like a knowledge-first paradigm about this issue of reporting abuse. *If* you know that misconduct has taken place, *then* you’re epistemically (and maybe morally) well-positioned to assert that it has taken place. Replying in all caps that WELL YOU JUST DON’T KNOW ABOUT POGGE wouldn’t engage this position; that an antecedent is unsatisfied in a particular situation doesn’t say one way or other that the general conditional is true.

                Yes, I’m aware of the irony in endorsing a knowledge-first paradigm about reporting sexual misconduct.

                1. what is ironic about it? are you hinting that the person who championed the knowledge-first paradigm … gasp!

                    1. The only person who comes to mind is Tsurugi Watanabe. He has various disciples who have championed the same paradigm, but you can’t really expect someone who doesn’t specialize in epistemology to “latch onto” the correct person with that improper description of yours

                    2. You must have a very broad view of “the knowledge-first paradigm,” 4:25, if it includes both John Hawthorne and Jason Stanley

          2. Is it still “problematic” if a faculty member has a sexual relationship with a graduate student at a university where such relationships are permitted as long as the relationships are reported and the faculty member recuses from evaluation of the student just as the university’s regulations require?
            If so then there both are and have been many such “problematic” situations.

      2. What was Bealer’s misconduct?

        I’m skeptical about this. Some metrobros are yentas, they love to spread malicious gossip, just for fun.

        1. I haven’t. But, hey, let’s hope someone takes up your offer to talk shit about someone with an envious career. Spreading shit about junior philosophers in a venue like this is a healthy way for adults to use their time.

        2. Seems more pretty than ugly from all the evidence I’ve seen: a department website with picture. Elaborate enough?

  5. “It’s too strong to say that person 1 does not have knowledge.”

    No it is not. You have no right to ruin another person’s whole life forever.

    1. Look, there are debates about what the requirements are for something to count as knowledge, but no plausible account holds that answers to questions about what rights you do or do not have have any bearing on whether or not you know a certain fact. You’re mixing up claims about what people can be said to know with claims about what they should do, given what they do know (or given their level of credence in a particular belief).

        1. Maybe this will help you get clear on your argument: do you care, at all, about the people whose lives are ruined forever as a result of being sexually harassed, or do you only care about the people whose lives will be ruined forever as a result of being accused of sexual harassment? I’ll give you two options, so this doesn’t get derailed with bizarre claims about what a theory of knowledge should take into account: ‘I care about both’ or ‘I care only about the latter’

                1. I don’t see why you expect other people to answer your questions when you won’t answer when someone asks you a direct and straightforward question.

            1. do you have the right to allow someone else to ruin another person’s life forever if you could easily prevent it?

              1. Good question, and the answer is No. Bystanders are morally obligated to report known cases of sexual harassment and assault. When institutions don’t make this reporting possible in a systematic and, for lack of a better word, institutional way, turning to the internet is permissible.

                1. Leigh Johnson basically defends this position on her blog.

                  “It is, however, a reminder that just as there exist strong and compelling reasons to adopt so-called “ideal” epistemic standards in making moral judgments, there also exist strong and compelling reasons not to do so. In professional philosophy, where sexism and sexual assault is the wide open secret about which the general dispositional attitude is to keep one’s eyes wide shut, victims are rarely afforded the luxury of an ideal epistemic environment in which the wrongs done to them might be judged fairly and impartially. Correspondingly, wrongdoers are frequently afforded the luxury of using the discipline’s systemic sexism and inattention to sexual exploitation as a shield to cover what appear to be innocent appeals to ideal standards of judgment, but are in fact nothing other than socially-, politically-, and professionally-motivated self-interest.”

                  “Absent the conditions for “ideal” knowing– which are rarely, if ever, present– we make do with what we have for forming careful, considered, albeit incompletely-informed judgments. Given what I know, and given what anyone else who has bothered to pay attention to the scandals of our discipline over the last half-decade or so should know, there is more than enough sufficient reason to suspend the requirements of ideal epistemic standards in one’s judgments about the verity of female philosophers’ accounts of sexual exploitation.

                  Where there is smoke, there is not always fire. But where there is smoke, there was, at least, very recently a fire.

                  And almost everywhere in professional Philosophy, the smoke is suffocating. “

                  1. Leigh Johnson’s argument is Donald Trump’s argument for banning Muslims and before that, the KKK’s argument for lynching black men. This is what happens when reason and facts are replaced by evidence-free hysteria. It’s morally evil.

                    1. Leigh Johnson has joined the ranks of moral giants like Heidi Howkins Lockwood, who thinks it’s perfectly OK to dump unverified gossip into a public record, even when the sources of the gossip wouldn’t vouch for its truth. We are blessed to have her in our profession.

                  2. Sometimes I think the “name em and shame em” posts here are false flag operations designed to make SJWs look bad. But then people like Leigh Johnson say things like this and I see that, no, this culture of internet shaming is really what the SJWs think is good and just.

                    1. I still think the people here posting names aren’t sjws, though. More likely just shit stirrers. If sjws were to post names, they wouldn’t do it here.

                    2. Ya that is a reasonable hypothesis; “Some men just want to watch the world burn”, which would be the shit-stirrers on this blog

                    3. With miscreants like BL and RM on the loose, it is very hard to tell the difference between a shit-stirrer and a SJW.

  6. The rumor mill is getting out of hand … Today I even overheard people say Kripke was a sexual predator. Yeah lol, that happened.

      1. Lol yeah sure. Sure he was one of the most famous predators, as can be easily verified by the fact that the top result of googling “kripke sexual harassment” is a reddit post which reads like a piece of modal fiction.

        1. So this makes me feel old, but the internet wasn’t really a thing until pretty recently. And people using it to post academic gossip is even newer still. Kripke started teaching in the early sixties. You can’t really verify anything about what kind of reputation he hand among students and colleagues from back in the 60s, 70s and 80s etc by looking at the internet.

          1. Ok … but why hasn’t any SJW publicly called out Kripke? Is it because he’s so much older than Pogge and the rules no longer apply to him? If so, then what kind of message is this sending to would-be sexual harassers?

            1. I don’t think its just because he’s older. Its because problem behavior isn’t recent, and that no victims have complained. All the cases that have been in the news recently ate because a victim complained.

              1. That’s probably right.
                The kinds of problems were different, too. I mean, I’m not excusing him, not at all. He was gross and creepy. But I don’t think “predator” is the right word. He could be very creepy, but not… adept enough to be considered a predator.

              2. why should it matter if no victim complained? if it’s known that he has sexually harassed women, this deserves to be publicized for the safety of other women

                1. Is he accused of doing things that violated the *safety* of women? Did he kidnap, injure, grab, punch, drug, pull a gun or knife, whip out a rope and suddenly tie people up? I hadn’t realized that he had put people’s safety at risk. Or are you using ‘safety’ metaphorically?

  7. “I’m a former prof and college administrator. I have extended family members who teach philosophy. I have served on hearing boards and personnel committees, and I worked down the hall from a philosophy department for years.

    It is my considered opinion that to a man/woman, philosophy professors are pond scum. Or, at the very least, they enable the pond-scumming of their colleagues. They are wanking little boys and scared little girls who justify their unconscionable actions with a dizzying amount of bullshit. And the abuse is cyclical: you only get tenure/published if you fuck so-and-so, which means that once you establish yourself, you’re not going to vote for anybody’s tenure/book unless they fuck you. It’s quid pro quo on ugly nerd steroids.

    It makes it really hard for everyone else in the humanities… and believe me, the other humanities profs are no picnic, either. Philosophers are the worst of the worst. I don’t know a single academic who disagrees with me. Some just haven’t noticed it yet, but if you ask them point blank, they immediately say, “Oh, well, yeah… now that you mention it, there was that one time my GA got roofied by Dr. X. Wow. Philosophers are pretty yucky, aren’t they?”

    Lock up your sons and daughters if they say they want to major in philosophy. The dysfunction. I can’t even.”

    1. “I don’t know a single academic who disagrees with me.”
      Golly. It’s hard to refute rock-solid reasoning like that.

      1. Right, well, lots of humanists dislike philosophers precisely because we have the gall to scrutinize their poorly supported political pronouncements (even when we tend to agree with the content of the pronouncements) and spurious claims about language, meaning, knowledge, etc.

        Of course, the New Consensus folks are working hard to ensure that, before long, it’ll be a Title IX violation to ask “what do you mean” and “how do you know” in the company of other philosophers. Perhaps then the folks in English departments will finally be able to tolerate us.

        1. Whaaaat? Given the sub op-ed quality of political opining I’ve seen by philosophers over the last couple of years, philosophers are the very last people who should be preening about the ability to see through “poorly supported political pronouncements”

    2. Google it; it’s from the comment thread to a Gawker article from 2013. The author of the comment is an ex-English prof who became an administrator, so, you know. It’s pretty awful and irresponsible even if meant in jest, which I pretty sure it’s not.

      1. In reply to the question ‘Is there a variation depending on the kind of philosophy they espouse?’, the same person says in the same thread:

        In my experience, there’s not really a distinction, though eco-philosophers tend to me slightly more tolerable. But eco types are usually smelly hippies who tell boring jokes and conveniently “forget” to pay their share of the restaurant check, so it’s a lose-lose no matter what.

        So that’s the level of knowledge and reflection of this English prof and head of department at a ‘major university’. She also wrote

        For some shocking anecdotal evidence, read this anonymous blog:
        http://beingawomaninphilosophy.wordpress.com/about-2/

        Too bad she didn’t know that philosophers are so preoccupied with these issues that the anonymous blog she cites as evidence of academic philosophy’s being a cesspool of sexual depravity is prominently linked to at several places on the website of the American Philosophical Association.

  8. So, about this ‘Pogge is a predator’ idea…

    What exactly is the word “predator” supposed to mean in that context? We have the literal context in which an animal, by its nature, hunts down other animals to kill and eat them. Then there’s the exaggerated but recognizable metaphorical use in which a criminal preys on people. A child molester watches children playing in the schoolyard, then picks out a helpless victim and makes his move; a con artist finds some gullible seniors and pretends to be a bank manager, scamming them out of their savings…these people are recognizably predators in the metaphorical sense.

    But in what sense is Pogge a ‘predator’?

    1. do people seriously think he’s an evil person? pogge is simply amorous. he wants to sensually love a lot of attractive members of the opposite sex. true, his activities unfairly benefit some women and disadvantage others, but this happens every time a person in a position of power forms personal relationships.

      1. Exactly.
        Lying to people to get them to go to bed with you is just what folk do. It’s not evil or good, it just is. And offering them jobs but then taking them away when it turns out they aren’t going to sleep with you after all, come on, what is supposed to be wrong with that?

        1. Given what’s already been revealed, anyone who comes on here asking ‘So, this Pogge guy — in what sense is he alleged to be a ‘predator’, exactly?’ is fairly probably A TROLL.

        2. He lied to people to get them to go to bed with him? I’d like to know more. Seriously, I don’t know enough about the case. My understanding is also that it’s far from clear that he offered someone a job and then took it away from her when she didn’t sleep with him. I know that’s what one person alleges he did, but he alleges otherwise. Am I missing something?

          Also, if he did tell a lie to make it more likely that someone would have sex with him, I think it matters what sort of lie he told. If you impersonate someone else to have sex with someone, that’s bad. If you say you’re going to do something if and only if the person has sex with you and then, after the person has sex with you, you don’t do it, that’s even worse. But what about pretending to like a band that you don’t like in order to keep the conversation pleasant? What about claiming to be interested in something the person brings up in conversation when you aren’t interested?

          Please explain what he’s supposed to have said that wasn’t true and why you believe that he said it.

          Also, none of this explains the predator bit. You can violate moral codes without being a predator.

          1. Pogge lied about his long term relationship to Dara Bascara. He said it was over, even though he was still living with his partner of over thirty years. She thought it was OK to sleep with him and then slept with him, but this was all based off of a lie about his relationship status.

                1. DB (“RB”) claims authorship of the post in the post’s comment thread, where she asked that folks not to name her. Weird that you’d deny it now.

                2. Dara Bascara is another name for Rachelle Bascara. Rachelle Bascara is the author of the Thought Catalogue thing on Pogge.

            1. So, just to be clear: if A tells B that A is leaving A’s long-term partner, and B, hearing this gets involved with A hoping that A is in fact leaving A’s partner, but then A doesn’t leave A’s partner, then A is a predator?

              Also, is it legitimate and righteous for others in A’s profession to shun A and not invite A to conferences as a result of hearing that A has done this, regardless of whether A is the greatest expert in the field?

              Please explain. This is very far from obvious.

              1. Just to be clear, you are calling yourself “not a troll” while at the same time deliberately strawmanning the views of the people you take yourself to be disagreeing with? No one has either said or implied that Pogge is a predator based on one incident of lying, or that he should be ‘shunned’ based on one incident of lying. If you’re really trying not to troll, then not pulling the kind of shit you just pulled would be a good start.

                1. Hi, moron.

                  Read the thread. It starts at 10:25, with my asking for a defense of the claim that Pogge is a predator. Then, someone responded by saying, “Given what’s already been revealed, anyone who comes on here asking ‘So, this Pogge guy — in what sense is he alleged to be a ‘predator’, exactly?’ is fairly probably A TROLL.” And yet, this didn’t answer the question: how exactly is Pogge a predator? Only one person had tried to answer the question, apparently, and it was boonswaggle, who claimed that Pogge acted wrongly because he was lying. I conceded that he might have lied, but asked how that made him a predator. Etc.

                  I’m still waiting for someone to justify the claim that he’s a predator. If the reason he’s a ‘predator’ is not that he allegedly lied to Dara Bascara, then that’s fine. Tell me what makes him a predator. If you have an answer, it should be easy for you to give it. If you don’t, then maybe you should admit that you’ve got no basis calling him a predator. It makes you look like, well, a moron.

                  It also makes you look like a moron when you call me a troll to cover up for the fact that you’ve apparently got nothing to say for your case.

                  In your next reply, either admit that he’s not a predator, or explain why he’s a predator. Those are the options. If you won’t do either, then back off.

                  1. “Only one person had tried to answer the question, apparently, and it was boonswaggle, who claimed that Pogge acted wrongly because he was lying.”

                    Yet again, you’re misrepresenting what happened. One question you asked was this:”Please explain what he’s supposed to have said that wasn’t true and why you believe that he said it.”

                    The person who responded to your post was clearly answering that question, and now you’re trying to make it look like they were actually trying to answer this question “how exactly is Pogge a predator?”

                    You’ve demonstrated already multiple times that you’re not interested in a good faith discussion You’re interested in scoring cheap points by deliberately misrepresenting your interlocutors. It also looks like you can’t even be bothered to do basic research before engaging in a discussion about this. Go and read the title IX complaint. If all you think happened is that he ‘lied to people in order to get them into bed with him’ and that he maybe took a job away from someone who didn’t sleep with him, then you’re missing an awful lot. Either you’re deliberately misrepresenting (again), or you are engaging in a discussion without even doing basic background research by reading materials that have been publicly posted on this case very recently and are very easy to find, and you started not by asking people where to look for the information by by demanding that they go do your homework for you. Either way, your pseudonym is starting to look less and less plausible.

                    1. Stop prevaricating, 7:46, and answer the questions.

                      1. Do you maintain that Pogge is a predator?
                      2. If so, on what basis, EXACTLY?

                      My point is that hysterical people are calling him that with no basis. Even on your own account, nobody has provided any such basis. Admit that there is no basis for calling him that, or provide the basis. Simple.

                      If you respond yet again by calling me a troll rather than simply answering the basic questions, it will be even more obvious to everyone who the real real troll is.

                      Now, do you have an answer? Or not?

  9. Would it be misleading to say that the main beneficiaries of the “diversity” movement in philosophy have been middle-to-upper-class, sociologically white women?

    1. Obvious, not misleading. For example, look at who posts on Feminist Philosophers, and then who gets jobs earmarked for women or shows up at women-only conferences. White women and most of all, white women from elite programs.

      1. Means that people classify and treat you as white. It’s a term that accommodates some anti-realist and/or constructivist views about race.

  10. The Balloon and Leigh Johnson have both had their rationalizations for mob justice endorsed by Jenny Saul at FP. This is one very good thing about the FP blog, it is a useful counter-indicator of what’s sensible.

      1. Yes. Most of them can’t argue their way out of a wet paper bag, so it’s not surprising that this is they way they deal with dissent. They just can’t do any better.

            1. My point is that, if we start down the road of shunning people that our particular clique doesn’t like, it won’t end well. What we need is a little solidarity.

        1. Maybe not, 12.03, but there’s something borderline creepy about the way the Balloon, Johnson, Saul et al are always lobbying to lower the epistemic threshold for declaring a Group Shun.

    1. Astounding. Absolutely astounding.

      The analogy to plagiarism is strange, too. Sure, editors and reviewers can censure someone for plagiarism without a university tribunal or whatever. But editors and reviewers are in possession of evidence, like a manuscript that quotes without attribution. Random internet people aren’t in possession of enough evidence in many other cases (though not the Pogge case, in my opinion — he’s damned himself), and *that* is why they should withhold judgement.

      1. That sounds right.
        Does anyone know of any actual cases in which a philosophy professor was publicly dressed down, “shunned”, whatever, for plagiarism? I can’t think of any.

        1. There was this interesting remark from the Nude Chaps discussion, “I can’t imagine plagiarism being that common. Communities of scholars are small and people get found out, eventually. So long as the punishment is certain and draconian, it should be enough.”

          I was struck by two things. First, I think it’s pretty common. I count two cases where people I know took things from presentations or papers of mine and published them. Moreover, I just saw on social media someone blasting another member of the profession for self-plagiarism. If, say, 20% of us know of cases of plagiarism that we haven’t said anything about, that wouldn’t be surprising, but that would suggest that it’s actually quite common. Second, I think that part of the problem here is precisely the draconian nature of the punishment. In both cases where it was crystal clear someone had published things they had taken from elsewhere I decided that it would be bad to press the point in a public way because it could destroy someone’s career and do serious harm to their families. In both cases it seemed to me that the people who took the ideas probably didn’t realize that that’s what they were doing and it didn’t seem right to me to push for some sort of redress that could end a career. (I was shocked to discover that I nearly plagiarized something myself in writing a response to a paper that others convinced me also was a probable case of plagiarism. Without realizing it, I had taken an objection from something that I had read years earlier and started working it up into a paper. Once you experience that sort of thing for yourself, you start to see that accidental plagiarism is something we should expect to be widespread and probably not the sort of thing we’d want draconian punishments for.)

    2. Hey mod — my short reply about people being really keen on shunning appeared briefly and then got eaten; similarly a few others eg a reply to mine saying ‘they should be shunned if they’re destroying the profession from within’. I didn’t think they’d been deliberately suppressed because (i) that’s not what this blog is about and (ii) there were still dead links under ‘recent comments’ at the top of the thread.

      1. Not 7:45; I was struck by the following:

        1. The large size of the undergraduate major, and the proposed explanations. I wonder whether they should be more selective. (Although I am at an institution with the opposite problem.)

        2. The median time to finish (12.33 years 10 years ago to 7.83 4 years ago).

        3. The precarious nature of funding. I was trying to figure out UCLA’s current financial aid offer to incoming graduate students and I couldn’t find it in a quick search of their website. I think departments should be more transparent about these sorts of things, particularly when you aren’t guaranteed summer funding for the length of your offer.

          1. It’s part of the culture at UCLA. They think it takes a really long time to do UCLA-level work.
            I imagine the attractions of Westwood are also a factor — Hotel California.

            That must be *mean* time to completion, not *median*, right?

  11. Should someone who got a job earmarked for a woman be appraised of that fact? SJWs want there to be jobs that are reserved for women, I gather. Do they also want women to know when they get one of those jobs, or should it stay secret?

    1. I believe the standard line is that, though being female should benefit a job candidate and that some jobs should be reserved for women alone, job candidates should never be appraised of this fact, even those who benefit from the policy. I say this because some stories in the What It’s Like blog involve women being told by colleagues that they are “affirmative action hires”, which is taken to be problematic and microaggressive.

    2. It is +incredibly+ rude to tell someone that he or she got a job due to his or her gender. Don’t do that.

      1. It is the norm in philosophy for women to be hired over men. This is demonstrable fact, as shown by all the relevant data including
        – the measurable gender disparity in merit indicators of those hired (men publish three times the rate women do in top 15 journals; the median woman hired has no publications);
        – the measurable gender disparity in the proportions of those hired (women are much more likely to be hired),
        – and all anecdotal observations, bar none, of hiring practices by experienced senior academics.

          1. it’s not at all ‘the norm’ for women to be hired over men. Assuming that every list of finalists has at least one man and one woman (and it is plausible that most, if not all, do)), and given that more than 50% of jobs go to a man (from memory, it’s about 60%), then it is the norm for men to get hired over women.

        1. Do you have a list of *all* the anecdotal observations, bar none, of hiring practices by experienced senior academics? Is there some survey or something that you are referring to that gathers this data?

  12. The accepted norm throughout philosophy is the sexist norm to discriminate against men and to hire women over men. A norm is a practical decision-making rule which a community conforms to, and which is enforced, either formally or informally. No experienced academic in professional philosophy sincerely denies that this sexist norm is the standard one. All of the detailed hiring data shows this discriminatory norm is so; every hiring decision that ever occurs aims to implement it; and it is conceded by everyone involved, even those who oppose this sexism and try to defend merit; and it is denied (sincerely) by no one.

    However, there is a conspiracy theory, presented at certain blogs for political reasons by certain individuals (Saul, Schwitzgebel, Schliesser and Jennings are examples) which tries to deny the systemic sexism in the philosophy profession, while directly contradicting all the known empirical evidence. Instead, these conspiracy theorists invent an imaginary secret plot to persecute rich white women; a secret plot more reminiscent of paranoid fantasies about black helicopters, or secret Muslim invasions, or faked lunar landings than reasoned debate based on evidence. This evidence-free gibberish is politically-motivated conspiracism, for which there is not a single data point of evidence.

    1. “every hiring decision that ever occurs aims to implement it; and it is conceded by everyone involved”

      Do you somehow have inside info about every hiring decision, and about what everyone involved in those hiring decisions ‘concedes’?

      Oh wait.. you also said “and it is denied (sincerely) by no one” I get it. Someone either agrees with you that there is such a norm, or they’re not being sincere. Therefore everyone actually agrees with you! What a cunning argument.

      1. The sexist norm is evidenced by a substantial quantity of empirical data, relating to hundreds of hires over several years, and is evidenced by all anecdotal reports.

        This sexist norm is denied only by a small number of conspiracy theorists – Saul, Schliesser, Schwitzgebel and Jennings and a few others – who are incapable of presenting a single data point on their side. It is precisely because what they assert contradicts all the evidence that one may conclude that they are being insincere, and that their claims are based on conspiracist fantasies, and not fact or evidence.

        1. “and is evidenced by all anecdotal reports”

          You really need to quit making claims that you have no evidence for. It just makes you look stupid when you assert that you have knowledge of ‘all’ anecdotal reports.

          1. To repeat the empirical facts, for the hard of thinking. All the empirical evidence and all the anecdotal reports concerning hiring in philosophy show that women are treated preferentially over men; that women hired have performed on average well below men hired (men have published on average three times as much in top 15 journals; the median woman has no publications); and that women have a much higher chance of being hired than men do. Every single piece of evidence, every single data point, demonstrates a systemic discriminatory norm favoring women over men.

            Again to repeat the methodological facts: there is a small number of individuals who continue to deny the data and evidence. For example, Saul, Schliesser, Schwitzgebel, Jennings and co. These are conspiracy theorists, fantasizing an imaginary plot to persecute rich white women, a paranoid fantasy for which there is no evidence whatsoever – and “coincidentally”, the “victims” inside this paranoid fantasy world are rich white women, like Saul, Jennings and co. But this is a paranoid conspiracy theory, no different from the trumpistas who think America is being invaded by Muslims or Mexicans; or the cave-dwellers who think the lunar landings were faked; or the far-left paranoiacs who think the WTC attack was a secret plot involving George Bush and Mossad. Likewise, the gibberish from the aforementioned loons is evidence-free drivel.

            1. Again with your assertions about what “all anecdotal reports” show. Repeating something really stupid over and over again doesn’t make your claim any more plausible.

              1. Every report: no exception.

                All the empirical evidence – multiple datasets, reports, policy documents – shows the same fact about practice: a systemic norm of bias and discrimination against men in hiring.

            2. Uh, Jennings doesn’t deny the data you reference – you are citing data she herself collected and analyzed.

  13. From the UCLA self-review document: “The department is deeply committed to creating a diverse faculty. This commitment is reflected in all stages of the hiring process. Folders from underrepresented minorities and
    women are specially tracked, and special consideration is given to candidates who can help us in terms of diversity, when we consider whom to interview and whom to invite to campus.”

    1. That never happened. The supposed UCLA document is a fraud perpetrated by the anti-feminist conspiracy theorists. Women are the ones who face obstacles in hiring, not men.

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