Saturday, February 25, 2006

Roger Reviews: The Professors

I was at Borders today and spotted Crazy Davy Horowitz's latest tome, The Professors. I spent a little bit of time scanning it, but don't have a laptop so I couldn't make detailed notes. Thus, the following is from memory.

From what I gleaned, many of the professors on the list were guilty of criticizing Bush and his war in Iran or saying something offensive (to Davy) about 9/11, the U.S. or Israel. Having a history with the Black Panthers and/or being a 60s radical are also a big no-nos, unless you're the author of the book. Teaching queer theory or feminism or black history is beyond the pasty pundit's pale. And I didn't see a lot of discussion about what actually transpired in the professors' classrooms, although there were a few references to syllabi and test questions.

A few of the alleged quotes from the profs were genuinely distasteful, but a lot more seemed to be selectively edited and many more than that seemed right on the money.

As I am unfamiliar with many of these professors or their alleged quotes, it's hard to tell how accurate the book is. The endnotes are often worthless, referencing an entire book without a page cite or citing to one of Crazy D's earlier books rather than an original source. (Not that I'd waste my time checking the cites.)

One example I am familiar with makes me suspicious about the accuracy of the entire book. In "his" piece on Orville Schell, Dean of the Berkeley J-School, Crazy Davy tells how the U.C. search committee refused to even interview an unnamed "qualified conservative" candidate for the position that went to Schell. Passing over the qualified conservative led to a lawsuit against U.C. by Crazy Davy's Individual Rights Foundation, until the qualified conservative bailed on the lawsuit.

Of course, that tale has nothing to do with Schell's qualifications for the job, but Davy's got pages to fill. But why doesn't Davy name the qualified conservative? Because that man is Michael Savage, the lunatic racist who even Bobo Brooks calls a "radio hatemonger." Savage isn't qualified to clean the crappers in the Bear's Lair.

If the rest of Horowitz's book is as dishonest as that particular passage, then ... well, really, it's nothing new.

The book also has Regnery hallmark of shoddy editing. Dinesh d'Souza is identified as "Dinesh n'tsouza" and the phrase "captured Taliban fighters who were captured...." is used. In one of the pieces, Crazy D refers to himself in the third person, as if someone else had written the entry. I expect it will be a few months before stacks of The Professors sit next to stacks of Bernie Goldberg's Arrogance, going unsold at $3.99.

Rating: No Stars

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