The MSU decertification group’s post is here. Their proposal is to replace the new union (and its dues) with a strong faculty senate.
faculty senate was gutted by Frohnmayer, with Lariviere, Pernsteiner and Berdahl finishing it off as an effective institution. Rob Kyr has tried to rebuild it, but at the moment the Senate does not even have one staff person. There’s a search for a $33K-$38K junior OA to keep up the website and the minutes, but the hiring and firing will be at Dave Hubin’s pleasure, not Rob Kyr’s. Sorry, but this is ridiculous – this should be a $75K job for an experienced person with hiring and firing done by the Senate Exec. Add another $50K or so for legal advice, etc.
Meanwhile Hubin spends a fair amount of time trying to stymie Senate actions that his bosses don’t like. Randy Geller won’t let the Senate get independent legal advice. President Gottfredson will not sign the UO Constitution, and he ignores the Senate’s existing power if it might cause trouble for the athletic department’s drug plan. Interesting priorities. The UO administration is stonewalling even the most basic information requests from President Kyr – stuff like when have the executive administrators been reviewed? What grades do Lorraine Davis’s “special admit” athletes get? That’s right, they won’t let the faculty see student grades, which in some cases have been assigned by athletic department employees. WTF? The Senate set up a Transparency Committee to try and improve access to information – so Hubin gutted their reforms and set up his own Committee, packed with compliant administrators. Tim Gleason – really? And remember the 2000 Senate White Paper on faculty salary increases? 12 years later, we’re still at the bottom of the AAU.
The TT faculty that I talk with signed union card check cards reluctantly, because they saw that the administrative efforts to destroy shared governance made it our last best hope. Contempt for the faculty has been part of Johnson Hall’s DNA for a long time now. Gottfredson hasn’t fired a single one of Frohnmayer’s administrators. Hasn’t even taken resignations. Lorraine Davis is still on his payroll – could things be any more absurd?
I encourage everyone to read the MSU post above, which I found on the anti-union website, here. It’s serious stuff. Then ask yourself what would it take to rebuild shared governance to the extent that our Senate could effectively negotiate with the UO administration about salaries and basic academic quality issues like student faculty ratios. Remember Bean’s academic plan numbers? He lied. For years. Never got called on it. Remember the furlough town hall? How Doug Blandy got appointed VPAA? Then ask yourself if Jim Bean, Randy Geller, and the rest of those $200K-$350K VP’s are going to give up all that money and power voluntarily. Nope.
So then ask President Gottfredson if he’s going to clean house. What, you’ve never had a talk with President Gottfredson? He’s never asked you over to hear what your views on what UO needs to improve? He hasn’t been to a single faculty meeting? He hasn’t sat down with your department head and asked what his first priorities should be? Isn’t that all just a little odd?
Sorry folks, we’ve tried shared governance at UO. It failed. JH has no interest in UO’s academic excellence. They are here for the pay and perks. They are failed academics who prefer football to classrooms. Now they want an independent UO board to consolidate their power. We need to fight these people and get back as much power as we can for the faculty, and that takes a union. 11/29/2012.
PS: Don’t take this to mean that I’m not skeptical of faculty unions. And sign that membership card, so you can be a voting skeptic like me!