Set them free

12 07 2015

And on the other hand, a call to do work for no pay:

Volunteer Professors. For almost two decades generous volunteers at Southern Virginia University have enriched the lives of students, faculty, and staff in a variety of ways. For example, distinguished retired professors have taught a host of classes in such areas as English composition and literature, classics and foreign languages, creative writing, communications, chemistry, family and child development, and Russian literature. Other volunteers have assisted in hosting guests, working in the library, staffing the career services center, helping out in the Travel Study office, and serving as receptionists. In exchange for their service, the university provides volunteers with complimentary apartment-style housing and five meals a week. In addition, volunteers are welcome to participate in the full life of the university attending concerts, recitals, plays, athletic competitions, and student life events. They are also welcome to use the library and recreational facilities.

“Complimentary apartment-style housing”? What, a dorm suite? And “five meals a week” should really be sold as “complimentary weight-loss plan”.

Now, Southern Virginia University is affiliated with the Latter-day Saints (which you can figure out by reading further down the ad: “On Sundays they usually serve in one of the local Latter-day Saint wards.”), so presumably this is pitched to Mormon professors as a kind of wonderful service opportunity as opposed to a rip-off of their labor.

Still, when the ad notes that “Preference is given to those who can volunteer for at least two semesters and whose specialty coincides with one of the teaching areas listed above”—which is to say, they want professors who will work for free for nine months in the humanities, business, sciences, and the social sciences, i.e., just about every area of undergraduate education, I gotta wonder how “self-sustaining” the SVU plan is.

And I’d guess it’d just be downright snarky to ask how many administrators are given this wonderful opportunity to volunteer for 2/3 of the year in return for [less-than-] one-hot and a cot.

I mean, who wouldn’t want to staff the career services center for a monthly potluck meal?


h/t PZ Myers, Pharyngula


I fought the law

12 07 2015

On the one hand, we have someone who wants to get paid without doing the work:

“This morning, I [Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear] advised [Casey County Clerk Casey] Davis that I respect his right to his own personal beliefs regarding same-sex marriages. However, when he was elected, he took a constitutional oath to uphold the United States Constitution,” Beshear said in a Thursday statement. “According to the United States Supreme Court, the Constitution now requires that governmental officials in Kentucky and elsewhere must recognize same-sex marriages as valid and allow them to take place. One of Mr. Davis’ duties as county court clerk is to issue marriage licenses, and the Supreme Court now says that the United States Constitution requires those marriage licenses to be issued regardless of gender.”

Davis said the meeting was “cordial” and that the governor “respectfully disagreed with my position.” However, he said that he would continue to refuse to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

He also wants the governor to call a special session of the legislature to deal with the matter of not wanting to uphold his oath of office, arguing that the estimated $60,000 cost of that session is a “drop in the bucket compared to the cost of what we will lose if we don’t take a stand for what we believe in today”.

Which is, apparently, choosing to run for an office which duties you don’t care to perform.

Circus Maximus MMXVI: Big time

12 07 2015

The intelligent Bush brother:

“You don’t have to be the world’s policemen, but you have to be the world’s leader and there’s a huge difference,” Bush explained. “This guy — this president and Secretary Clinton and Secretary Kerry – when someone disagrees with their nuanced approach where it’s all kind of so sophisticated it makes no sense. You know what I’m saying?”

Bush continued, “Big syllable words and lots of fancy conferences and meetings and – We’re not leading. That creates chaos. It creates a more dangerous world. So restoring the alliances that have kept the world safer and our country safer – getting back to a position in the Middle East where there’s no light between Israel and the United States.”

Big syllable words? Is that, like, when you write BUUUULLLshit—y’know, extra-emphasizing one part of the word to be all nuanced and fancy-conference-y and stuff?