Chron lefty plagiarist Rick Casey launches today’s column on TSU as follows:
Gov. Rick Perry could have done much more than appoint a blue-ribbon panel to help address the financial scandals at Texas Southern University.
He could have appointed a czar to run the place.
Casey (probably with some help from his research assistant) then spends 18 paragraphs (some of the one-sentence variety that he favors) recounting how the governor roughly thirty years ago was given the power to appoint a conservator to run troubled universities.
After that fascinating tale, he writes:
Ironically, Slade was promoted to president because six years ago the university was still having problems with financial management. With a doctorate in accounting from the University of Texas at Austin and years of teaching at TSU’s business school, she was considered the right person to clean up persistent financial problems.
With this pattern of long-term problems, neither the blue-ribbon panel the governor has promised nor a czar — even if he or she served the full two years provided by law — is a solution to the problem.
Nothing like knocking the thesis that led the column right out from under it about two-thirds of the way through!
Casey concludes by criticizing Texas governors for not appointing regents who would hold Texas Southern to account over the years and for not taking TSU as seriously as UT and A&M. Talk about being all over the place!
The difficulty with blaming the problems of TSU on Texas governors (current and past) is that while we have plenty of state institutions of higher learning that are less prestigious than A&M and UT, those less prestigious institutions don’t seem to have the recurring problems of TSU.
The problems at TSU almost seem systemic at this point. It’s not clear that Texas governors have caused the problem (never mind the nice history lesson that Casey’s research assistant dug up), or that Texas governors really have that much power to effect a solution, given the school’s historic mission and certain sensitivities that cause most people to shy away from a real debate on truly holding TSU to account (or finally folding it into a university system that will).