In today’s The News & Observer of March 3, 2011, columnist Barry Saunders opined about Dr. Raymond Cook’s DWI case. Saunders pretty much jumps into any topic, no matter how controversial, with gusto, and usually produces a scathing, satirical, stinging, and sarcastic masterpiece. I am in awe of his literary talents, and only wish that on occasion he would lend them to this blog site.
However, the one topic that he has steered clear of is the shakedown of Duke University by the Carpetbagger families of the Duke Lacrosse defendants and their attorneys for $20 million each… a total of $60 million. In addition, the university squandered another huge undisclosed amount of money for attorneys to try and get the school’s insurance company to reimburse them after Duke had flagrantly breached the contract. Mercifully, they finally agreed to drop their suit and lick their wounds.
Actually, there are three related stories that the media has recently decided to keep isolated and hush-hush with minimalist coverage. And they all began with an IRS lien filed around February 17, 2011 against Duke Lacrosse defendant Reade Seligmann. Local media pretended not to notice that the lien even existed, and it took the Detroit News, a newspaper in the Motor City in the state of Michigan, to bring it to the attention of the world. Now, in all fairness, local media did report about it on television and newsprint, however, if you blinked, you would’ve missed it. Keep in mind coverage of this volatile story pales in comparison with the massive media overload given to a rinky-dink piece of gossip about Duke Lacrosse detective Linwood Wilson. That story about a private and personal marital squabble consumed the local media spotlight for months.
Anyway, the disclosure of the Seligmann tax lien and resultant accurate estimates of the amount Duke doled out to the three defendants began when the university announced that it was going to settle the lawsuit it brought against National Union Fire Insurance Company. Basically, Duke would drop its suit, National Union would drop its countersuit, and both parties would pay for their own attorneys’ fees. On Duke’s part, it is a classic case of throwing good money after bad. Duke University was probably motivated to settle when it learned that a lien against Seligmann had been applied by the IRS.
The Detroit News article was published about a week after that, and reported in The News & Observer shortly thereafter, a day after its article on Duke’s settlement.
Then, low and behold, three days later, Duke University raised its tuition a whopping 4.3% … to total as much as $53,905 with room and board included. Well, it is no wonder after its ill-advised and generous gift to the three Duke Lacrosse defendants… the university is trying to make up for its $60 million plus loss on the backpacks of its students.
What Duke University needs to do is address the compensation paid to the administrators instead of shifting attention to the students in the form of tuition and other fees. Administrators with their high salaries, bonuses, pensions, and benefits are financially sapping the budget of funds that should be used to pay instructors and professors and help defray costs to its student body. At least that’s my opinion, and I would really be interested in what Barry Saunders has to say about this and other topics touched upon in this blog.
Barry, I know that you must answer to you superiors, so I recommend that before you take my challenge that you obtain an okay first. I would hate for you to be axed on my account. Anyway, the gauntlet has been thrown. Barry, it’s your move.
NOTE: Due to unavoidable and unforeseen scheduling conflicts, Part 10 of Episode V of “The MisAdventures of Super-Duper Cooper” will be uploaded today, three days earlier than planned. Be sure to check out the commentary which follows. At the end of the commentary feature, there is a page with an e-mail link. I appreciate all feedback.
A link to Part 10 is below: