Monday, January 11, 2010

Former Editor-in-Chief, et al Not Willing To Go Away Quietly

If you read the D this morning, you no doubt know that there's a petition circulating to get a slate of petition candidates on the Association of Alumni executive committee ballot. Of particular note for at the Review was the inclusion of Emily-Esfahani Smith '09, our former Editor-in-Chief, as candidate for secretary-treasurer.

This fact was buried at the end of the article, after a few paragraphs about how the lawsuit against the College--which held that the 2007 vote, which enlarged the Board's size by a third and made all new seats College appointed, violated an 1891 agreement that half the seats would be alumni-elected--lost them the election (which is, of course, speculation from John Daukas Jr. ’84; it couldn't be the huge effort behinds such things as Dartmouth Undying). A few paragraphs later it even singled out Mr. Noah Riner '06 and reminded readers of his 2005 Convocation speech. The subtext would seem to be, "look out! The conservative Christians are coming to control the College!"

UPDATE: 1/12/2010

It appears that the petition collected enough signatures. Here's hoping their campaigns are victorious as well.


Scott said...

Sterling, your post contains a significant error: "the lawsuit against the College--which held that the 2007 vote . . . violated an 1891 agreement. . ."

The lawsuit was actually withdrawn before a trial took place. The court (or the lawsuit) never held anything regarding the 1891 agreement.

Alumni are not idiots or sheep, willing to be led or misled by the slightest PR. If that were the case, many more of them would have agreed with the "huge efforts" the Hanover Institute put behind the pro-lawsuit slate.

The election really was seen as a referendum on the lawsuit, which had reached its most successful point, having just survived a motion to dismiss. The "unity" slate said repeatedly that their goal was to withdraw the lawsuit.

Alumni didn't go from intelligent to bamboozled; that election was the clearest poll ever taken on the advisability of suing the board.

Scott said...

[Sterling, the error I noted could be corrected by substituting "claimed" for "held."]

John said...

We're back to the question of what the dog who chases a car will do if he catches it. As far as I can see, the only thing that was gained by the alumni and trustee insurgencies of the early and mid '00s was the College put the Student Life Initiative on hold and hired a new Dean with a laissez-faire attitude toward alcohol -- two outcomes that I'm not at all sure were positive, since we've had the spectacle of a sorority demanding the Administration find it an acceptable venue when it lost its lease on Beta, and the usual stories of Dartmouth students passed out on the greensward waiting for the drunk wagon persist.

Where were any moves toward curriculum reform, touted as part of the petitioners' agenda? Oh, right, one of the insurgent leaders was an ENGLISH prof who specialized in Ingmar Bergman's films. Right, that'll get us curriculum reform in a hurry.

Seems like those of us who would prefer to see a sensible agenda -- not necessarily that followed by the Board, but a sensible one -- can get about the same result by not doing anything at all.