UC to Harvard: Drop Dead

UC to  Harvard: Drop DeadLarry Summers, former Treasury Secretary, Harvard’s king-in-exile, and legendary sexist, just can’t catch a break. Asked to give a talk to the UC Board of Regents, Summers was unceremoniously un-asked after a group of UC faculty totally bitched out the Regents with a petition and stuff.

According to the SF Chronicle, Professor Maureen Stanton, Chair of the Department of Evolution and Ecology (and Harvard Ph.D.), pronounced herself, “appalled and stunned that someone like Summers would even be invited to speak to the regents.” The petition (which she authored) states in addition:

Inviting a keynote speaker who has come to symbolize gender and racial prejudice in academia conveys the wrong message to the University community and to the people of California

A symbol of gender and racial prejudice? Ouch, Larry.

For what it’s worth, you have an open invitation to address the Regents of Ivygate.

After the jump: the Chronicle article, somewhat abridged.

UC Regents find new speaker for event

Sunday, September 16, 2007

(09-15) 16:10 PDT — Lawrence Summers, the controversial former president of Harvard University, has been replaced as the planned speaker at a UC Board of Regents dinner next week after complaints from faculty members.

“(UC Regents) Chairman Richard Blum and Dr. Summers talked last Thursday and agreed that the regents would have a different speaker,” Trey Davis, director of special projects for the UC system, said Saturday.

Davis was unable to say whether a protest letter signed by more than 300 people from the university system had any effect on the decision to find a different speaker for the regents’ dinner in Sacramento on Wednesday. He referred those questions to Blum, who is out of the country.

Summers, who was Treasury secretary under President Bill Clinton, resigned from Harvard last year after a long-running clash with some faculty members over his questioning whether women might not have the same innate ability as men in disciplines such as science, math and engineering. He also had thorny relations with minority faculty members during his time at the university.

While Summers later apologized for his remarks, which he said were misinterpreted, it didn’t slow the criticism, which continues to this day.

“I was appalled and stunned that someone like Summers would even be invited to speak to the regents,” said UC Davis Professor Maureen Stanton, who helped put together the petition drive. “I think many of us who were involved in the protest believed that it wouldn’t reflect well on the university that he even received the invitation.”

The petition called Summers’ invitation “not only misguided but inappropriate” at a time when the university is working to diversify its community.

“Inviting a keynote speaker who has come to symbolize gender and racial prejudice in academia conveys the wrong message to the University community and to the people of California,” the petition said.

The decision to dump Summers as the speaker at the dinner was abrupt. His name was on the dinner invitation that went out Aug. 31, along with other information about the three-day meeting at UC Davis, Davis said.

“The dinner is an informal, social occasion, with more of a conversation with the speaker than a formal talk,” he added. Blum, who is the husband of California Sen. Dianne Feinstein, made the original decision to invite Summers.

Susan Kennedy, chief of staff for Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, will replace Summers as speaker at the dinner.

While delighted that the regents have decided to replace Summers, Stanton now hopes the dispute will be quickly forgotten.

“Frankly, we’d like to see the story just die at this point,” she said.

  • Not to mention

    UCLA or Berkeley, etc.

  • Not to mention

    UCLA or Berkeley, etc.

  • hownowbrowncow

    Oh Larry.

    He made it way too easy. Nobody really liked him except for the Econ folks. You can buy friends if their moral fiber is as weak as your own.

    His own university rejected him for his sexism. And don’t even get me started on the racism. The only color he recognizes is green. He’s a total Scrooge McDuck–swimming around in his silo of golden coins.

  • hownowbrowncow

    Oh Larry.

    He made it way too easy. Nobody really liked him except for the Econ folks. You can buy friends if their moral fiber is as weak as your own.

    His own university rejected him for his sexism. And don’t even get me started on the racism. The only color he recognizes is green. He’s a total Scrooge McDuck–swimming around in his silo of golden coins.

  • princeton2009

    fuck you hownowbrowncow larry liked economics. and he didn’t care that much about his own money. and ucdavis women are idiots who misinterpreted his statement which is really factually correct. men do score on the extremes in most subjects. so go fuck yourself daisy

  • princeton2009

    fuck you hownowbrowncow larry liked economics. and he didn’t care that much about his own money. and ucdavis women are idiots who misinterpreted his statement which is really factually correct. men do score on the extremes in most subjects. so go fuck yourself daisy

  • @princeton2009

    way to make yourself look like a sexist douchebag.

  • @princeton2009

    way to make yourself look like a sexist douchebag.

  • hownowbrowncow

    Also, way to make yourself look like a well-connected d-bag that doesn’t deserve to be at Princeton. Uncontrollable anger? Check. Blind devotion to Econ? Check. Poor reasoning? Check. “F you, he liked Economics?” How does that even speak to my point? It’s true, the only core group that really stood by him were his Econ friends. Whether he liked the discipline or not is not the issue. Truthfully, I can’t believe I’m even defending myself against such a completely senseless rebuttal.

    $500 bucks says you’re an undeserving legacy. Actually, I should probably raise that bet. I’m sure you’re good for it, there’s probably at least a mil in your trust fund.

    Damn, you leg’s make it so easy. You really cleave to the most amazingly predictable stereotype. Every freaking time. It’s poetry.

  • hownowbrowncow

    Also, way to make yourself look like a well-connected d-bag that doesn’t deserve to be at Princeton. Uncontrollable anger? Check. Blind devotion to Econ? Check. Poor reasoning? Check. “F you, he liked Economics?” How does that even speak to my point? It’s true, the only core group that really stood by him were his Econ friends. Whether he liked the discipline or not is not the issue. Truthfully, I can’t believe I’m even defending myself against such a completely senseless rebuttal.

    $500 bucks says you’re an undeserving legacy. Actually, I should probably raise that bet. I’m sure you’re good for it, there’s probably at least a mil in your trust fund.

    Damn, you leg’s make it so easy. You really cleave to the most amazingly predictable stereotype. Every freaking time. It’s poetry.

  • inno

    Larry was retarded to apologize for what he said in the first place. If he believed it was right, he should have stood by it. And yes, there is evidence that suggests that the bell curve of intellectual ability (as evidenced by a very imperfect measure such as standardized testing) tends to be flatter for men. People who argue against it must have a difficult time differentiating between hypotheses and axioms.

  • inno

    Larry was retarded to apologize for what he said in the first place. If he believed it was right, he should have stood by it. And yes, there is evidence that suggests that the bell curve of intellectual ability (as evidenced by a very imperfect measure such as standardized testing) tends to be flatter for men. People who argue against it must have a difficult time differentiating between hypotheses and axioms.

  • Hey

    fix the headline already. The UC Regents are over the entire U of C (Not just Davis).

  • Hey

    fix the headline already. The UC Regents are over the entire U of C (Not just Davis).

  • princeton2009

    Wow, actually hownowbrowncow, I was deliberately holding back on my grammar. I am neither an economics major, nor a legacy. But I still stand as most of my comments, not as a rebuttal but as an outburst of online rage.

    Many of Larry’s economics friends DID support him. As did Steven Pinker, then at MIT. As did the majority of Harvard Professors (yes I wrote that correctly). As did the majority of STUDENTS at Harvard, according to a poll conducted by the Harvard Crimson.

    The only group where a majority of professors wanted Larry to leave was among the Faculty of Arts and Science. So that is disregarding the law school, medical school, business school, and divinity school.

    There is no reason Larry should have been blamed for the factual accuracy of his statements. Was he misguided to announce them while acting as the President of Harvard? Perhaps. But he was not misguided simply in announcing published research (Pinker attests to that).

    You seem to have more stereotypes than I do, so yes, go fuck yourself.

  • princeton2009

    Wow, actually hownowbrowncow, I was deliberately holding back on my grammar. I am neither an economics major, nor a legacy. But I still stand as most of my comments, not as a rebuttal but as an outburst of online rage.

    Many of Larry’s economics friends DID support him. As did Steven Pinker, then at MIT. As did the majority of Harvard Professors (yes I wrote that correctly). As did the majority of STUDENTS at Harvard, according to a poll conducted by the Harvard Crimson.

    The only group where a majority of professors wanted Larry to leave was among the Faculty of Arts and Science. So that is disregarding the law school, medical school, business school, and divinity school.

    There is no reason Larry should have been blamed for the factual accuracy of his statements. Was he misguided to announce them while acting as the President of Harvard? Perhaps. But he was not misguided simply in announcing published research (Pinker attests to that).

    You seem to have more stereotypes than I do, so yes, go fuck yourself.

  • princeton2009

    Wow, actually hownowbrowncow, I was deliberately holding back on my grammar. I am neither an economics major, nor a legacy. But I still stand as most of my comments, not as a rebuttal but as an outburst of online rage.

    Many of Larry’s economics friends DID support him. As did Steven Pinker, then at MIT. As did the majority of Harvard Professors (yes I wrote that correctly). As did the majority of STUDENTS at Harvard, according to a poll conducted by the Harvard Crimson.

    The only group where a majority of professors wanted Larry to leave was among the Faculty of Arts and Science. So that is disregarding the law school, medical school, business school, and divinity school.

    There is no reason Larry should have been blamed for the factual accuracy of his statements. Was he misguided to announce them while acting as the President of Harvard? Perhaps. But he was not misguided simply in announcing published research (Pinker attests to that).

    You seem to have more stereotypes than I do, so yes, go fuck yourself.

  • princeton2009

    Wow, actually hownowbrowncow, I was deliberately holding back on my grammar. I am neither an economics major, nor a legacy. But I still stand as most of my comments, not as a rebuttal but as an outburst of online rage.

    Many of Larry’s economics friends DID support him. As did Steven Pinker, then at MIT. As did the majority of Harvard Professors (yes I wrote that correctly). As did the majority of STUDENTS at Harvard, according to a poll conducted by the Harvard Crimson.

    The only group where a majority of professors wanted Larry to leave was among the Faculty of Arts and Science. So that is disregarding the law school, medical school, business school, and divinity school.

    There is no reason Larry should have been blamed for the factual accuracy of his statements. Was he misguided to announce them while acting as the President of Harvard? Perhaps. But he was not misguided simply in announcing published research (Pinker attests to that).

    You seem to have more stereotypes than I do, so yes, go fuck yourself.

  • katjapower

    Hey inno,

    No one is debating the “bell curve of intellectual ability” (although standardized testing in late high school years isn’t EXACTLY ‘innate intellectual ability,’ and there are tests that show that women, at higher math/science levels, perform similarly to men when given the same encouragement and opportunities) here, rather Mr. Summers’ lack of tact and heavy reliance upon those stats in explaining the lack of women scientists in academia. The controversy started not when Larry suggested there were differences in standard deviations reflected in testing scores, but rather his under-estimating phenomena such as discrimination as an explanation for the under-representation of women in academia (“the gender gap.”) http://cosmicvariance.com/2006/01/02/dangerous-stupid-or-simply-dishonest/
    Also, keep in mind that most faculty spreads in universities now earned their PhD’s when “women in the sciences” were a very rare occurrence. As more and more women go into scientific fields (http://www.nytimes.com/2005/02/28/opinion/28cox.html?ex=1190260800&en=4f477a98cd5b04a1&ei=5070), we will see them represented more and more in academia. Which was the whole issue in the first place. The issue was never “testing.” Anyway, the collection of scientific reports on this issue have often conflicted with each other, some indicating genetic bases for the variation, some indicating socialization bases. But the issue was really Larry not wanting to examine discrimination, as I understand it from women who were there. Tenured offers to female professors dropped dramatically at Harvard while Summers was there. http://www.boston.com/news/local/articles/2005/01/17/summers_remarks_on_women_draw_fire/?page=2 Anyway, just know if you argue for ‘innate differences’ there’s very little scientific evidence out there to create a water-tight case. The further you get down the “this sex is smart, this sex is stupid. . .this race is smart, this race is stupid” path you get, the more you get into eugenical hot water, b/c much of this (very NON axiomatically, I assure you) comes from scattered testing incidences and is not verified by a preponderance of evidence. This is a justified political reality. Larry, of all people, at a conference on WOMEN IN ACADEMIA, should’ve understood that. Nothing, lone bell curves or anything else, can erase the fact that this man was a bull in a china shop.

  • katjapower

    Hey inno,

    No one is debating the “bell curve of intellectual ability” (although standardized testing in late high school years isn’t EXACTLY ‘innate intellectual ability,’ and there are tests that show that women, at higher math/science levels, perform similarly to men when given the same encouragement and opportunities) here, rather Mr. Summers’ lack of tact and heavy reliance upon those stats in explaining the lack of women scientists in academia. The controversy started not when Larry suggested there were differences in standard deviations reflected in testing scores, but rather his under-estimating phenomena such as discrimination as an explanation for the under-representation of women in academia (“the gender gap.”) http://cosmicvariance.com/2006/01/02/dangerous-stupid-or-simply-dishonest/
    Also, keep in mind that most faculty spreads in universities now earned their PhD’s when “women in the sciences” were a very rare occurrence. As more and more women go into scientific fields (http://www.nytimes.com/2005/02/28/opinion/28cox.html?ex=1190260800&en=4f477a98cd5b04a1&ei=5070), we will see them represented more and more in academia. Which was the whole issue in the first place. The issue was never “testing.” Anyway, the collection of scientific reports on this issue have often conflicted with each other, some indicating genetic bases for the variation, some indicating socialization bases. But the issue was really Larry not wanting to examine discrimination, as I understand it from women who were there. Tenured offers to female professors dropped dramatically at Harvard while Summers was there. http://www.boston.com/news/local/articles/2005/01/17/summers_remarks_on_women_draw_fire/?page=2 Anyway, just know if you argue for ‘innate differences’ there’s very little scientific evidence out there to create a water-tight case. The further you get down the “this sex is smart, this sex is stupid. . .this race is smart, this race is stupid” path you get, the more you get into eugenical hot water, b/c much of this (very NON axiomatically, I assure you) comes from scattered testing incidences and is not verified by a preponderance of evidence. This is a justified political reality. Larry, of all people, at a conference on WOMEN IN ACADEMIA, should’ve understood that. Nothing, lone bell curves or anything else, can erase the fact that this man was a bull in a china shop.

  • hownowbrowncow

    Ah yes, Larry was incredibly well-liked at Harvard. Which accounts for his ouster, of course. And I for one was against his resignation (no one likes to see someone punished for simply betraying their natural character, in this case, Larry’s bumbling buffoonery) but was of course also against his lack of tact and his role in sullying the luster of the school. Many people were against his resignation, as they felt that was too severe a reprimand. But FAS (the prestige of which is the very kernel of what Harvard stands for) was obviously rubbed the wrong way and they made good on their anger.

    As for your epithet. . .Will you settle for, infelicitous d-bag? In dire need of anger management? :)

  • hownowbrowncow

    Ah yes, Larry was incredibly well-liked at Harvard. Which accounts for his ouster, of course. And I for one was against his resignation (no one likes to see someone punished for simply betraying their natural character, in this case, Larry’s bumbling buffoonery) but was of course also against his lack of tact and his role in sullying the luster of the school. Many people were against his resignation, as they felt that was too severe a reprimand. But FAS (the prestige of which is the very kernel of what Harvard stands for) was obviously rubbed the wrong way and they made good on their anger.

    As for your epithet. . .Will you settle for, infelicitous d-bag? In dire need of anger management? :)

  • Zafar Khan

    Summers was axed for his complicity in the affair of Andrei Shleifer, a member of the Economics Dept. who traded illegally in Russian securities while consulting to the Russian government in behalf of Harvard and USAID on the privatization of the companies that issued those same securities. Got it? Nothing to do with garden variety sexism.

  • Zafar Khan

    Summers was axed for his complicity in the affair of Andrei Shleifer, a member of the Economics Dept. who traded illegally in Russian securities while consulting to the Russian government in behalf of Harvard and USAID on the privatization of the companies that issued those same securities. Got it? Nothing to do with garden variety sexism.

  • yayayaylie

    nobrowcow, if princeton09 were in dire need of anger management, you would be in dire need of hospitalization by now.

    Zafar: more on the Schleifer affair, please.

  • yayayaylie

    nobrowcow, if princeton09 were in dire need of anger management, you would be in dire need of hospitalization by now.

    Zafar: more on the Schleifer affair, please.

  • ivy guy ’02

    larry wasn’t axed for the schleifer affair or the women-in-science boner. he was axed because his management style rubbed the FAS faculty the wrong way. he insisted on emphasizing hard science over the liberal arts (see the new Allston development), holding faculty more accountable for their teaching, dramatically overhauling the curriculum, centralizing more executive authority in Mass Hall, and improving the life of students on campus… while not directly causal to his ouster, the women-in-science thing, the cornel west thing, the shleifer thing (which actually happened before his presidency, though the investigation happened during his presidency), the dismissal of Bill Kirby as dean of the FAS, all contributed to his lack of political capital within the FAS that he would eventually need for fighting off the no-confidence votes. by the time the second no-confidence vote happened, he just didn’t have the chips to play anymore and bowed out. even if he had stayed, though, the FAS would have dug in their heels over any initiative he tried to push, just on general principle, and the administration would’ve ground to a near halt. he just had to leave. though pay attention, because drew faust is going to be pushing many similar, if not identical, initiatives… it’s just that she’ll do it more diplomatically, and therefore, she’ll probably be fine.

  • ivy guy ’02

    larry wasn’t axed for the schleifer affair or the women-in-science boner. he was axed because his management style rubbed the FAS faculty the wrong way. he insisted on emphasizing hard science over the liberal arts (see the new Allston development), holding faculty more accountable for their teaching, dramatically overhauling the curriculum, centralizing more executive authority in Mass Hall, and improving the life of students on campus… while not directly causal to his ouster, the women-in-science thing, the cornel west thing, the shleifer thing (which actually happened before his presidency, though the investigation happened during his presidency), the dismissal of Bill Kirby as dean of the FAS, all contributed to his lack of political capital within the FAS that he would eventually need for fighting off the no-confidence votes. by the time the second no-confidence vote happened, he just didn’t have the chips to play anymore and bowed out. even if he had stayed, though, the FAS would have dug in their heels over any initiative he tried to push, just on general principle, and the administration would’ve ground to a near halt. he just had to leave. though pay attention, because drew faust is going to be pushing many similar, if not identical, initiatives… it’s just that she’ll do it more diplomatically, and therefore, she’ll probably be fine.

  • inno

    katjapower,
    a fair answer. I wish most arguments about this rather controversial issue were that intelligent. I guess I’m just dismayed that for most people the story goes like this: “Larry said that women are dumb and can’t do science, that upset a lot of people, and he had to go.” Indeed, Larry had to go because he pissed off a lot of people. He was doing things that, in my outsider’s opinion, should have been done, but he should have gone about doing them in a slightly more diplomatic manner.

  • inno

    katjapower,
    a fair answer. I wish most arguments about this rather controversial issue were that intelligent. I guess I’m just dismayed that for most people the story goes like this: “Larry said that women are dumb and can’t do science, that upset a lot of people, and he had to go.” Indeed, Larry had to go because he pissed off a lot of people. He was doing things that, in my outsider’s opinion, should have been done, but he should have gone about doing them in a slightly more diplomatic manner.