Home / General / Turns out Ken Starr hasn’t exactly been fired after all

Turns out Ken Starr hasn’t exactly been fired after all

Comments
/
/
/
514 Views

Apparently he’s being demoted all the way down to to adjunct professor custodian assistant vice president for bureaucratic redundancy Chancellor:

On Thursday Baylor University put out the following news release:

Board of Regents apologizes to Baylor Nation; Dr. David Garland named interim University President; Ken Starr transitions to role of Chancellor and remains professor at Baylor University Law School

Previous LGM coverage here.

FacebookTwitterGoogle+Share
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Google+
  • Linkedin
  • Pinterest
  • He’s been failing upwards for a long time now.

    • so-in-so

      No wonder they don’t believe in natural forces, immune to gravity.

      I wonder how many you need to strap under the wings of a plane to make it fly?

    • Denverite

      The thing is, he was a pretty respected judge on the DC Circuit (one of his opinions is still taught in Admin Law), and my understanding is that his tenure at SG was considered to be a successful one.

      • Murc

        It is generally held that he simply hid the knife until it was time to use it.

        More prosaically, the guy saw a chance to bring down a President he loathed and went at it with every weapon at his disposal. My personal feeling is that he simply wanted to be the man who successfully toppled a Presidency and recognized that he was in a circumstance where even if he failed, his failure would carry no professional or social consequences.

        • rea

          He thought he would end up a Supreme Court justice. He didn’t realize how toxic his behavior would make him appear.

          I happen to think that a prosecutor setting a perjury trap is a serious breach of professional ethics, but apparently the profession does not agree.

          • so-in-so

            With Trump running and GOP Senate, it remains possible.

            • Breadbaker

              Too old. Trump’s wouldn’t nominate anyone over 45, I’ll bet.

      • Crusty

        He was, but he was also quite often a product of the legal profession prestige game/system with politics sprinkled in. Out of Duke law he got a clerkship, which is impressive for a recent law school grad, but signifies nothing but that he did well in law school. From that clerkship he went on to clerk for Burger on the sup ct, and from there to a big firm. All hallmarks of a strong legal career, but nothing where he had an opportunity to display any remarkable talent or good judgment or anything. Then, having been a clerk to a conservative judge and a lawyer at Gibson Dunn, Reagan nominates him to the federal bench, having apparently made friends with the right people, and from there he becomes SG under HW Bush. While these are all positions that the legal profession regards highly, its also just a career path where he played the game right. Then he becomes the special prosecutor/independent counsel or whatever it was called, and for the first time in his career really has a blank slate to do what he wants without having to answer to anyone and not much in the way of precedents to follow and with prurient glee, he gives us the Starr report. So yes, he was respected, but probably not for particularly good reasons.

        • shawn k

          If I recall correctly, the previous independent counsel had been fired for insufficient wingnuttery and prosecutorial zeal. He didn’t have to read between the lines to know what he was expected to produce.

          It is fitting that he did what he was told and his report was such a hatchet job that it kept him off the Supreme Court- despite being embraced to high heaven by the conservative big shots. More of a hack than Alito. A weird badge of honor, I suppose.

          • Crusty

            It spelled the end of a shot at jobs like Sup Ct justice or U.S. Atty General, but opened the door to cushy jobs like Dean of Pepperdine Law School in Malibu, California.

      • vic rattlehead

        SG is a pretty sweet gig, but I wouldn’t have left the DC Circuit for it. But that’s just me.

    • Dennis Orphen

      Following orders and not questioning why isn’t failing in his world.

  • Fenian

    Art Briles is on his way out the door.

  • Cash & Cable

    There’s a helluva lot more going on here: Head Coach Art Briles is getting fired and Baylor is making a ton of changes.

    The Board of Regents report is scathing:

    Baylor failed to take appropriate action to respond to reports of sexual assault and dating violence reportedly committed by football players. The choices made by football staff and athletics leadership, in some instances, posed a risk to campus safety and the integrity of the University. In certain instances, including reports of a sexual assault by multiple football players, athletics and football personnel affirmatively chose not to report sexual violence and dating violence to an appropriate administrator outside of athletics. In those instances, football coaches or staff met directly with a complainant and/or a parent of a complainant and did not report the misconduct. As a result, no action was taken to support complainants, fairly and impartially evaluate the conduct under Title IX, address identified cultural concerns within the football program, or protect campus safety once aware of a potential pattern of sexual violence by multiple football players.

    • efgoldman

      The AD is also “on probation”, whatever that means.

      • Murc

        Isn’t that code for “stay indoors until the heat dies down?”

        • CornFed

          No, here it’s, “wait for the new guy to fire your ass”.

      • efgoldman

        I just skimmed the report. It’s damning enough, but it’s all about institutional failures re Title IX. Nothing about failure to notify civil authorities of possible crimes. Last I heard rape and sexual assault are criminal violations, even for football players in Waco, TX.

      • Crusty

        It means if he messes up just one more time, he will be placed on double secret probation.

  • sleepyirv

    So what does Baylor’s Chancellor do, besides being a lot of money because it’s an administrative position?

    • Paul Campos

      I’m sincerely curious about this as well. I think I understand what a university president is supposed to do (public face of the institution, raise money, liaison to powerful pols etc.) and what a provost does (chief academic officer), but what’s a chancellor? (Besides a very high paying important-sounding job)

      • In state university systems, the individual institutions have presidents and the whole shebang has a chancellor. But in Baylor’s case, it apparently means he gets to keep an office and a salary.

        • Paul Campos

          Well at CU it’s the other way around (whole system has a president and each campus has a chancellor, whose job responsibilities remain mysterious to me, although I’m certain they are immense and difficult, thus justifying a modest $500K salary, a house, a car, etc)

          • BigHank53

            In some schools, the chancellor is the equivalent of a ship’s executive officer: responsible for any management decisions while the captain/president is busy doing PR or fundraising or away from the campus. This is in part a holdover from the nineteenth century, when the president might well be away from campus for month if he had to travel to the state capitol.

            In Starr’s case, I suspect he’ll get the title on the door, but they won’t bother giving him a secretary. Or a phone. Or any job duties beyond “Don’t embarrass us any more than you already have.”

            • AKA the provost. They already have one.

              • rea

                Sounds like the job of the Chancellor involves student discipline, which of course is exactly what Starr fucked up as President.

            • efgoldman

              I suspect he’ll get the title on the door, but they won’t bother giving him a secretary. Or a phone. Or any job duties beyond “Don’t embarrass us any more than you already have.”

              Regardless, he’ll get the money.

            • Downpuppy

              The Business Director will be, according to the Official Release, Dr. Reagan Ramsower, Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer.

              That’s a business card I MUST have.

          • Either way. But in Baylor’s case, it certainly seems redundant. Apparently Starr formerly had both titles, so it only takes half a person to do each.

          • Lurker

            In Finland, a university Chancellor I typically a Grand Old Man, both with scholarly merits and a shining career as a respected university Rector. It is a part-time position, with the responsibility to ratify professorial appointments and, in case of University of Helsinki, to speak for the University in the Council of State when university-related issues are handled.

            Essentially, a Chancellor is the check on the Rector, and the ultimate peak of an illustrious academic career.

    • Snarki, child of Loki

      You know who else got appointed as Chancellor, when it was figured ‘what harm could he do?’

      • wjts

        Mustrum Ridcully?

        • CornFed

          No but a damn good miss!

      • Gwen

        Thomas More?

      • CJColucci

        Damn — beat me to it!

      • Bill Murray

        Cam Chancellor?

    • Hogan

      Starr has been “serving” as president and chancellor, so I guess he’ll be doing half of what he used to do.

      • so-in-so

        So, screwing up half as much?

    • Karen24

      I’m a graduate of Baylor Law School and for the life of me I have no idea what the Chancellor does. When I was there one guy held both positions.

      • Lost Left Coaster

        Maybe they just keep the position in reserve in case they have to do something like fire their president without really firing him.

      • Dennis Orphen

        Endorse the back of the checks? Unless they have direct deposit.

    • sleepyirv

      Sounds like it’s mainly going to be fundraising, which suggests it wasn’t a real job to begin with.

      https://twitter.com/Mark_Schlabach/status/735906157378871301

      • Breadbaker

        He added chancellor to his Presidential duties, whatever it was supposed to mean. My guess is that his job is basically to go around to people who are very angry at the terrible way that football and college in general are being “pussified” by all the attention to the wimmin folk and their alleged right not to be raped, and get them to cut really big checks so that Baylor football can continue to have a golden era without anyone being so stupid as to screw it up by being caught when the inevitable happens.

  • MAJeff

    Bobby Knight had Texas Tech. Who’s gonna be there for Briles?

    Looks to me like BYU would be an ideal fit, they hiring?

    http://www.nytimes.com/2016/04/27/us/rape-victims-brigham-young-university-honor-code-suspensions.html

    • efgoldman

      Who’s gonna be there for Briles?

      There are plenty of other holy roller/bible banger schools.

      • Captain Oblivious

        I’m laying 2:1 he takes a year off then winds up as an OC in the NFL.

    • Jay B

      If he’s not hired as a head coach by this December, I’ll be shocked. He could still become a coordinator or an ‘offensive consultant’ this year. Hell, I think the Browns will hire him to mentor Griffith for this season.

      • LosGatosCA

        That’s a pretty good guess.

        But if RGIII fails Briles could be out of options.

        My guess is the Eagles or the Jets. Just based on their judgment.

  • Jay B

    It warms my heart that these assholes profess to believe in hell. Hope they enjoy it.

    • Dennis Orphen

      The flames of hell are warming your heart.

    • so-in-so

      But since they BELIEVE they are spared. It is those of us who fail to clasp God to our bosom who will burn. So I have been reliably informed.

  • Crusty

    I don’t want to knock Baylor or its graduates per se, but why does it exist? I gather that it has a good medical school and sometimes a decent NFL farm system team, but doesn’t Texas have a pretty strong state university system? If it does, what need is Baylor filling?

    • Warren Terra

      Surely you could say this about a large number of private and/or religious schools?

      • Crusty

        Yes, but often there’s some kind of answer relating to the demographics and/or history of the area, and I am simply unaware of what that explanation is in the case of Baylor.

        • Denverite

          Baylor is the oldest university in Texas. Plus it provides a valuable niche for Texas students who can’t get into UT or A&M, don’t have the money to go to SMU, and don’t want to spend four years in Lubbock. (Waco is nearly as bad, but at least it’s only 90 minutes from Austin and Dallas.)

          • Karen24

            I went to Baylor. Waco is many millions of times nicer than Lubbock, if only because Waco has trees and does not have dust storms. (Waco does, however, have lots of damaging tornadoes. I studied for three sets of spring finals using a flashlight and sitting in my apartment bathtub with the cat in a carrier while hoping I didn’t get carried off to Oz.)

            • wjts

              Lubbock’s delightful weather also includes the occasional tornado.

            • Denverite

              Point conceded. My experience is mostly just driving through.

          • Brad Nailer

            I was stationed at the air base in Lubbock way back when. Made the drive from Dallas to Lubbock once and, goddam, I think it took two years.

            • Try driving Albuquerque to Austin in one day. Lubbock is the halfway point.

              • LosGatosCA

                I have driven from San Antonio to San Jose, CA in one day.

                That was 6 hours after I drove from Boca Raton, FL to San Antonio in one day. By myself – no one else in the car. Total food expenses for 3000+ mile trip – under $15

                The most demoralizing event I have ever experienced while driving was entering Texas with the mile marker on I-10 showing almost 900 miles.

                The stupidest event I ever experienced was getting a ticket on I-10 in West Texas with the speed limit at 80.

                95 wasn’t fast enough to get me closer to civilization

                • Denverite

                  We had to drive from Dallas to Chicago in late December 2000. There was a massive ice storm in Oklahoma and Arkansas, and the roads in both states were shut down. You look at a map and tell me how to get from Dallas to Chicago without going through Oklahoma or Arkansas. The answer, by the way, is you go due east until you hit Jackson, MS, then cut straight north to Memphis. Except we were idiots and didn’t want to go the extra 30 miles to Jackson once we hit the state line, so we cut up on a dinky little country road that parallels the Mississippi (we could have taken the interstate in Jackson). Probably took an extra hour.

                  In any event, I think the whole trip took 22 hours (instead of the usual 15 or so). Btw, we were doing it in a Geo Metro with two adults and a 50 pound dog in the back seat.

                • LosGatosCA

                  That’s combat duty on that trip.

                  I’ve done I-55 from Chicago to Nawlins – but going over to Dallas that way seems pretty tough.

                • Michael Cain

                  A housemate and I did Austin to San Jose in one shot back in the day when the speed limit was 55 and everyone was enforcing it. Left Austin about 9:00 AM, ate dinner in El Paso at 8:00 PM. Picked our way through Phoenix in the middle of the night because I-10 wasn’t finished. Ate breakfast in Blythe while the sun was coming up.

                  Most memorable driving event was on the return trip. We caught up with a line of thunderstorms at night somewhere in West Texas and had one big one just south of us, one big one just north of us, and a monster several miles ahead of us. I grew up a Great Plains kid, and it was still the most impressive lightning show I’ve ever seen.

                • wjts

                  Chicago to Cape Cod, MA through a snowstorm in Ohio is my most memorable miserable non-stop drive. It took about 18 hours.

    • The need for a big ol’Baptist college.

    • Denverite

      Baylor aspires to be the “Baptist Notre Dame.”

      The medical school (which is in Houston) is almost its own entity by this point.

      It banned dancing on campus until the mid 90s.

      • Crusty

        I see.

        How does TCU figure into the landscape? All I know is they’ve got Texas and Christian in the name and they also sometimes have a decent NFL farm system team.

        • sharculese

          TCU is affiliated with the Disciples of Christ.

        • Denverite

          Never been able to figure that out, actually. It’s nearly as expensive as SMU but not quite as prestigious (which is saying something). Maybe the admissions standards are lower?

          • Karen24

            The differences in prestige between the two schools are neglible and entirely due to the difference in tuition prices. SMU is a party school for Highland Park debs and their frat boy dates; Baylor allows kids from places like Lufkin to join the Greek system.

            • Denverite

              I suppose. The only people I know who went to TCU were either scholarship athletes or people from the boonies (Mansfield, Midlothian, etc.).

              My impression of SMU is more that it’s wannabe debs from like Amarillo and OKC.

              [ETA: This impression may be because I once dated a wannabe deb from Amarillo who went to SMU way back in the 90s.]

              • Karen24

                My cousins grew up in Midlothian! Cool!

                • Denverite

                  My kids’ cousins are currently growing up there.

                • rea

                  Deep in the heart of Midlothian?

                • Denverite

                  Deep in the heart of Midlothian?

                  Actually, just outside, I think. They were in Midlothian proper but it was too “urban” for them. (Not joking.)

                • rea
              • skate

                I had a couple friends in grad school who were TCU alums. One was from Fort Worth, so TCU was the hometown school. The other was from the Houston area, and I have no idea why she went there. Both were good Baptists, so Baylor would have made as much sense or more.

          • sharculese

            I had a friend in college whose little sister was seriously considering TCU because the family are DoC and it has a fairly good nursing program. And this was a girl from Atlanta, so a bit of a trek.

            I don’t know what percentage of their enrollment is people in the church, but I bet it’s a decent chunk. I think there are scholarships specifically for congregants.

        • Hogan

          Their team nickname is the Horned Frogs. That’s reason enough for them to exist.

      • D.N. Nation

        My wife (ended up going to Emory, for context’s sake) applied to and visited Baylor College of Medicine and was impressed. Seemed to not come with the overriding Baptist nonsense of the home base.

    • sharculese

      Some parents are really invested in the need for their child not to suffer the indignity of going to a public university.

      • Denverite

        Yeah, that explains SMU to some extent, but both UT and A&M are better regarded than Baylor.

        • sharculese

          As someone whose job involves talking to parents about where their kids are applying, trust me that sound, rational judgement is not always the most important factor. And if your kid doesn’t have the resume to get into SMU, hey, Baylor is happy to take their money.

          • sharculese

            Since I’ve left the edit window I’ll not that I have to talk about Texas schools basically never, so I don’t actually know the relative degree of difficulty for getting into SMU vs. Baylor.

      • BobBobNewhartNewhartSpecial

        Some parents are really invested in the need for their child not to suffer the indignity of going to a public university.

        Lol, that apparently explains the whole rationale for University of the Pacific. Way back when, I remember talking to a friend about athletic scholarship offers she had to Pacific and to a few of the UC’s. If I remember correctly, Pacific was charging about 6x the cost of a UC at the time. She couldn’t get past the fact that Pacific was “offering a $30k/year” pacakge. Yeah, but the UC’s are way better schools. But “$30k/year.” Went to Pacific.

    • Karen24

      Baylor is, as noted below, the Baptist Notre Dame. It’s actually older than the state system, although not the oldest in the state. (Southwestern U. in Georgetown, a Methodist school, is the oldest university here.) It’s a large school with the reputation of being a safe place — well, once upon a time a safe place — for girls from nice Baptist families that couldn’t quite afford SMU and didn’t want their darlings in Austin.

      It has always had a decent academic reputation, and back in the 80’s told the Southern Baptist Convention to go fly a kite and became the flagship of the Texas Baptist Convention, a separate entity. (Not sure of the Texas Baptists’ official name; important to know that it’s not the SBC.).

      • Crusty

        I’ve never heard of Southwestern U. in Georgetown, but I think that’s more confusing than Miami of Ohio or Indiana Weslyan University.

        • Hey, Miami of Ohio (which is in Oxford, btw; they missed a trick in not using that as part of the name) is a fine school.

          Indiana Wesleyan is part of a chain. There is, for instance, Kentucky Wesleyan, which is even more visible. Unlike the school for layabouts and burnouts in Connecticut, they’re explicitly Church-affiliated.

        • Thom

          Southwestern University, to be clear, is a liberal arts college. Erik used to teach there. (The claim to be the oldest rests on having inherited the charter of a college that was chartered by the Republic of Texas, as they never tire of telling us.) SMU was founded by Southwestern people who decided they would rather be in Dallas (god knows why).

        • wjts

          Pennsylvania boasts both an Indiana University and a California University.

  • Camille

    This bodes ill for Hillary Clinton.

    • Thom

      Why?

      • efgoldman

        Why?

        Why not, because everything does if you read “reporting” from the Village.

  • narciblog

    Of course he’s not getting fired. He’s an executive. What does an executive have to do to get fired?

  • Pingback: Talking With Proactive Strategery And Saying Nothing - Lawyers, Guns & Money : Lawyers, Guns & Money()

It is main inner container footer text