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December 18, 2016


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Wow Victoria, you really tore David a new one with that ad hominen attack. A couple of questions. Are his figures correct? You didn't attack those so we can assume they are right. How does the fact that he is a failed academician affect his argument? He is still 100% correct that those law schools are in trouble, right? So, I guess we can conclude that your ad hominen attack doesn't affect the validity of his argument. Of course, that's what ad hominen means.

It is time for the ABA to sanction these scam law schools. They are just preying on the poor and minorities. And Victoria, you should be ashamed for working at one of these schools

Captain Hruska Carswell, Continuance King


If you are ever in my neck of the woods near my neighbor with 14 Trump signs in his front yard, I would be delighted to sit down with you at Hardees over Thick Burgers, Dutch of course.


The response by the Party this morning sounds so much like an argument made by someone asserting the exclusionary rule: ignore what was found, attack the way that it was found.

This is just a variation. Here, the guilty party wants to attack not the manner in which the evidence was found, but rather the person finding it!

This is just the sort of slimy response that solidifies the need for immediate, escalating sanctions. The sort of defiance of the truth evidenced in the attack against a messenger is disgusting and worthy of institutional condemnation.

If the person doing the attack is in a position of authority, then I would hold that attack against the law school itself, i.e., if the author is a managing agent of the law school (just like in the real world, folks).



The fact that David applied for jobs at failed institutions is a silly slur, and reflects the muddled thinking of the person mounting the attack. David was attempting to counsel change - much needed change - and I think we all know how legal academics respond to criticism, express or implied. They are a haughty, self satisfied, over privileged bunch, especially at the bottom feeders (where the mostly mediocre pretend to be great scholars, educators and "knowledge generators" to unknowing students and each other).

In fact, the person leveling the attack, by implication, is on the faculty of one of these bottom feeders, and thus the irony of this person pointing the finger at anyone and claiming "failed academic" is likely a sad, sad circumstance.

One further point, however, about responsibility of the law school: when I quickly read the post, I got the impression that the identity of the author of the slime was self identified. Apparently, on further reading, it appears this comment was anonymous. So be it.

But, remember, anonymity is often necessary on this site to ward off the sort of vicious, vindictive attacks that nearly invariably follow any criticism of a law school or its faculty. If a law school defender fails to identify, then it is a reasonable assumption this is a "failed academic" lucky enough to have scored a position on a law school faculty at a bottom feeder, who is not secure enough to self identify, because the attacker may fear that he or she will soon be on the market and knows that disclosure of the application information of another may be viewed as something worthy of something less than, shall we say, praise.


Eye roll.

Is this appropriate blog etiquette?


I think a more salient question is this:

If these schools' practices are so reprehensible, why did you apply to work at them?

To be clear: (1) I don't work at any of them and (2) I actually think their practices are highly problematic. I myself would not apply to work at any of them, *because* I find their practices highly troubling.

Captain Hruska Carswell, Continuance King

These bottom feeder UNRANKED schools will likely stay in business for various reasons. It is on the graduates if they want to risk putting such baloney on their resumes. Everybody KNOWS why the attended those schools. They couldn't get into any place better. Everybody knows when you pull up in a Mitsubishi Mirage, Hyundai Excel or Chevrolet Aveo with plastic wheel covers and a JD Ryder license plate frame. You couldn't afford anything better.


I have historically posted anonymous comments on this blog, but I have used my work email address, which is indeed traceable to my name. Apparently anonymity is no longer protected on this blog? Troubling.


TO be fair, I don't think David has disclosed the identity of the attacker. Nor should he. Nor should he make any effort to identify this person, nor should he seek to "get even" or anything like that. That is what the law school faculty do. (I have heard law faculty members actually BOAST about their gossipy ways, proud of the way they skewer people with whisper campaigns. If anything could be more disgusting, it would be if they overtly expressed illegally discriminatory views: oh wait, they do that too.)

ALl that said, it is fair to draw inferences if someone has what appears to be inside information. Again, without personally identifying anyone, a generic "insider" analysis seems within bounds.


"Is this appropriate blog etiquette?"

No, it is not. I have no iron in this fire except to say that David should not be disclosing any part of a commenter's email address to a blog posting. "Email address will not be displayed" is a commitment made by the blog. Disclosing part of an email address crosses that line.



What is the email address of the anonymous commentator?

You don't know. The name mentioned could be as meaningful as the word "anonymous" i.e., meaningless.

I agree that anonymity must be respected. Some commenters here can remember a few years ago very vindictive and deplorable efforts that did not respect anonymity.

But, David's mention above isn't even close to that.

David Frakt

Just to be clear - when you post a comment and plug in an email address, your email address is not displayed on the site. It is, however, visible to the author of the post and the other editors/owners of the blog. Commenters are free to use any e-mail address and many use a fake e-mail address such as [email protected]. I have no idea if "Victoria" used her real e-mail address, or if indeed her name is Victoria, of if Victoria is even a woman. I would never post someone's e-mail address who preferred to remain anonymous., and I did not do so here. What I will say is that the e-mail address was not associated with any particular law school, I do not know who wrote it, and I don't care to know. I have posted in the comments of another post in the past a list of schools where I had previously had interviews, and my Florida Coastal experience is widely known, so that is public information. Like many lawyers who want to become law professors, I went on the market through the AALS Faculty Recruitment process and got some interviews. Over the years, I have been through this process more than once, and I have had interviews and some callbacks at a wide range of schools. I believe I interviewed with LaVerne in 2007. Since I left Barry Law School in 2012 (when they started lowering their admissions standards, after promising to raise them), I decided that I would not teach at any law school that had exploitative admission practices. I interviewed for the Deanship at Florida Coastal but made it clear from the outset that I would only consider taking the job if they were clearly committed to changing their admission practices. Clearly, they were not. So, I have not done anything unethical or inconsistent with my values. But we should not be so quick to judge those who teach at low ranked schools. It is incredibly competitive to get any law teaching position, and, aside from a few superstars with Supreme Court Clerkships and law review editors from top 10 schools, it is largely a crapshoot where you get interviews, where you get callbacks and where you get offers. There are many wonderful scholars and teachers at non-prestigious schools. We should also keep in mind that many of these schools were perfectly respectable at the time that these professors were hired and have only lowered their admission standards in recent years in response to the huge downturn in applications. I know from experience that it is extremely hard to move up to a more prestigious school when you start at the very bottom, even if you are a prolific writer with very good article placements and great teaching evaluations. It is as if you are permanently tainted by your association with the lower-tier school. I understand why many law faculties went along with the decisions by their administrations to lower standards to fill seats. Perhaps they thought the downturn would only last for a year or two, and then things would get back to normal. Perhaps they didn't really know how important LSATs and UGPA really are. Or maybe they just had no place to go. Even professors who might have wanted to leave likely couldn't find another teaching position because no law schools were hiring, and they couldn't find a job in law practice because no law firms or government agencies were hiring, not to mention that they may have been out of practice for many years, or never really practiced in the first place. I also know that many law professors have tried to raise objections to admissions decisions, to no avail.

So, without being critical of individual professors, I think it is fair to criticize institutions that take advantage of students, and the leaders of those institutions, especially those who are profiting very handsomely from their exploitative practices, and especially those who lie, or obfuscate, or try to rationalize their actions.

David Frakt

One more thing about anonymous comments. There may be legitimate reasons to remain anonymous, such as if you are a whistleblower or fear retaliation. But if you would be personally embarrassed for people to know that you wrote a comment because it is petty or vindictive, and you are simply using the cloak of anonymity so you can get away with being nasty without people thinking ill of you, then perhaps you should reconsider posting the comment.


Captain HC -

Where is your neck of the woods? It seems like you live here in The Faculty Lounge.

Captain Hruska Carswell, Continuance King

anon at 10:10:

I invite you as well to feast on Thick Burgers at the Hardees in the Love's Truck plaza along with Professor Frakt. It will be beautiful, believe me.

Unfortunately, I live on the Faculty Lounge these days because my practice is not terribly busy these days. I have too much time on my hands. A combination of too many lawyers, those ubiquitous billboards advertising $49.00 Traffic Ticket Defense and clients who would rather spend money on organic Christmas cheer rather than retain the effective assistance of counsel for their defense. Usually, work picks up in February when they figure out or when the judge ADMONISHES them that they are seriously facing penn time. Or they magically come up with money after the PD pitches jail time....

lemon scented

@ anon:
"I agree that anonymity must be respected. Some commenters here can remember a few years ago very vindictive and deplorable efforts that did not respect anonymity."

You mean that time someone with administrative privileges passed a commenter's email address on to Brian Leiter, who proceeded to anonymously harass the commenter? Is that the incident you're referring to?


This is the type of posting that one would imagine David would reconsider upon further reflection, and hopefully delete. What good does it do to shame someone who is anonymous, anyway? Perhaps sitting back ad counting to ten in the future will forestall hitting "Post" in the future. And yes, I am posting anonymously, mostly so the angry torh-yielding mob that often comments here leaves me alone


I agree with this comment and the others aligned with it:

""Email address will not be displayed" is a commitment made by the blog. Disclosing part of an email address crosses that line.".


And disclosing multiple emails to a certain Univerrsity of Chicago professor, who boastsabout how someone connected with this website gave them to him, and a]sends emails to posters should mean that the person responsible should have their career in legal academia come to a screeching halt. Shouldn't it?


Lemon scented - it was more like 3-8 email addresses... and Leiter bragged of receiving them....

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