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'Astonished' 

Editor:

Anyone amused by brazen hypocrisy was astonished when former HSU officials expressed surprise over fatal layoffs at KHSU, (Mailbox, April 18). One former administrator found the layoffs "hard to believe," apparently forgetting his role overseeing the 1986 landmark policy-change requiring campus employees to sign "at-will" contracts instead of educating them in understanding their due-process rights under the California Education Code Section 89900c; the origin and purpose of due-process, or the importance of modeling respect for labor laws.

In a stunning irony, (hypocrisy's little friend), HSU administrators lack advanced academic credentials in their fields of human resources, public administration or public finance, often selected from loyal friends and family. Unrestrained by competence, ethics or employees' due-process, HSU joins many bureaucracies comprising America's orthodoxy of placing the whims of power and privilege above the common good. In addition to privatization, rising tuition and academic divestment, a generation of silent complicity allowed hundreds of millions of dollars to fully fund HSU's recreational and leisure activities, venues and bureaucracies; exclusive locked-gate housing, celebrity entertainers, ski-trips to Bend and library lattes, leaving working class and homeless students facing unemployment with years of debt subsidizing "Club HSU."

For decades, HSU has laid-off perceived opponents among faculty and staff. Most leave voluntarily, while others reject administrators' abuse of authority by filing lawsuits to enforce their rights. In either case, a dysfunctional class-centered campus community continues, aided by millions of dollars in secret "no-fault" settlements.

Courage isn't required to condemn the recurring symptoms of this disease. Classism negatively impacts every academic discipline; it models complicity for students "graduating" into America's class-centered communities, housing, healthcare, energy, pharmaceuticals and the gas, oil, finance and military junta controlling America. It's up to current faculty, staff and students to end the silence.

For former administrators, "too little too late" is a grotesque understatement.

George Clark, Eureka

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