I am a new contributor at Memory Hole that seeks to frankly address a variety of issues in American academe from what will be an often ironic liberal perspective that this blog may from time-to-time lack. Being a generally open-minded chap, Dr. Tracy has offered me a platform and I am proceeding under a pseudonym of my own choosing.
This is necessary because the academic community, perhaps surprisingly for some, is among the foremost holdouts to views and analyses that even modestly diverge from its own. In addition, contributing to a site like this using my real name could seriously torpedo my chances of ever receiving an NEH grant or obtaining weighty blurbs from established colleagues on future book projects.
Given Tracy’s more or less dubious status following his outrageously conspiratorial, anti-Obama (i.e. racist), pro-gun control observations in 2013 concerning the Newtown shooting and Boston bombing events, having any association with him would also jeopardize my plans to one day “retire” into a substantially higher pay grade as an administrator at my institution.
We in the know in fact know can verify that the Sandy Hook massacre and Boston Marathon bombings took place because the New York Times reported on these events in tandem with other major media. The paper of record also fostered a public discourse upholding the Obama administration’s heartfelt and judicious responses to them. A newspaper as reputable and intellectually substantive as the Times would never lie to the American public.
Moreover, there’s no reason why Obama or Attorney General Eric Holder would have lied to us either–especially those of us on the progressive left. As most of my liberal colleagues implicitly know, if several centuries of wanton White Anglo Saxon racist imperialist brutality hasn’t taught African Americans some measure of docility and respect, what will?
But I digress. Despite the fact that Tracy’s insights were only called in to question by many of the very media outlets that reported on each of those occurrences, universities and their salaried faculty care far less about truth and integrity than fortifying their respective institutions’ bankrolls by bringing in grant money and doing the perfunctory work to further pad their own resumés.
This is particularly the case if any events or issues in question are, well, considered the least bit “controversial” by the media and broader public. After all, climbing the ladder in higher ed requires a sort of double-think, for otherwise one may fall in to the trap of possibly identifying with and researching the concrete social and political realities that “the 99%” must contend with on a regular basis.
This “go along to get along” approach requires a solid commitment of never second-guessing who you think you see in the mirror. An optimistic, “winning” attitude is key, particularly since one is enmeshed in an austere, manipulable workplace hierarchy where your privilege of tenure is directly predicated on your fear and carefully concealed loathing of the often poorly paid, non-tenured “instructors” who conduct close to 75% of the teaching at most US colleges and universities today.
But you didn’t hear any of the above remarks disparaging modern academe and what passes for official intellectual discourse from me. I am here to represent that tradition of unimpeded, politically correct, philanthropy-funded idea and knowledge production, provide to you an idea of how it all functions, while preserving my future prospects for career advancement in the process.
Dr. Tweed is a tenured professor of humanities at a middling university on the US east coast. “Barclay Tweed” is a pseudonym that the author hopes will prevent any macro or microagressions by esteemed and knowledgeable colleagues against future prospects for career advancement. He blogs at barclaytweed.wordpress.com.