# The University Of Austin

##### Loony Running The Asylum
Staff member
Seen elsewhere:

Bari Weiss, Niall Ferguson, Heather Heying, Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Peter Boghossian, Kathleen Stock, and others are setting up a new university in Austin, Texas in opposition to what they see as the woke liberal establishments of presumably every other university (they call them “legacy universities”.

Currently they are seeking donations and publicity and have roped in some big names to boost their signal on social media such as Steven Pinker and Jonathon Haidt and Andrew Sullivan and many more people that you often hear complaining about the Wokesters.

They will have a summer course on “forbidden ideas”!

But is this project likely to succeed? Is it being set up with the best intentions?

Personally, I think some involved may have good intentions but others are probably just going to get their snouts in the trough as quickly as possible and this whole thing will fall apart in recrimination. The problem with setting yourself up as “teaching the controversy” is that there are always going to be some who are more controversial than others. Notably none of the so-called “caliper crew” seem to be involved - those famous for exploring race and IQ but does that mean that the university itself may end up being not as fearless as it claims? Will theirs be demands for way more controversy?

So is this the next Trump University? Will it be confused with actual university - the University of Texas, Austin? Would you pay good money to go there? Would you donate to this institution? Would you be happy for your kids to go there thinking they will get the best education?

Donate your money while you can. Get in on the ground floor of this fantastic opportunity.

#### Metaphor

##### Sjajna Zvijezda
What, precisely, is your problem with this? That someone, somewhere, is starting something that accords with their values?

##### Loony Running The Asylum
Staff member
Grifters gotta grift.

Staff member

#### Patooka

##### Veteran Member
What, precisely, is your problem with this? That someone, somewhere, is starting something that accords with their values?
Well, I think it's downright Orwellian to call oneself a University when it clearly isn't one. And here I was thinking precise useage of nouns was really important to you.

#### thebeave

##### Veteran Member
You know a forum has totally lost its way when its founding principles (free inquiry, free expression of ideas, skepticism and secular humanism) and thought leaders are mocked and ridiculed in favor of a twisted, degenerate and dangerous ideology.

##### Loony Running The Asylum
Staff member
You know a forum has totally lost its way when its founding principles (free inquiry, free expression of ideas, skepticism and secular humanism) and thought leaders are mocked and ridiculed in favor of a twisted, degenerate and dangerous ideology.
Drama queen much?

#### Metaphor

##### Sjajna Zvijezda
What, precisely, is your problem with this? That someone, somewhere, is starting something that accords with their values?
Well, I think it's downright Orwellian to call oneself a University when it clearly isn't one. And here I was thinking precise useage of nouns was really important to you.
Ah, so the objection is merely the (clearly, aspirational) title, and not the values themselves? I'm glad to know you do not object to people starting something that is in accordance with their values, even when you oppose those values.

##### Loony Running The Asylum
Staff member
I'm opposed to grifters.

#### Patooka

##### Veteran Member
Ah, so the objection is merely the (clearly, aspirational) title, and not the values themselves? I'm glad to know you do not object to people starting something that is in accordance with their values, even when you oppose those values.
They shouldn't be calling it a university, especially when it clearly isn't one. Doing so is Orwellian and authoritarian.

#### Metaphor

##### Sjajna Zvijezda
Ah, so the objection is merely the (clearly, aspirational) title, and not the values themselves? I'm glad to know you do not object to people starting something that is in accordance with their values, even when you oppose those values.
They shouldn't be calling it a university, especially when it clearly isn't one. Doing so is Orwellian and authoritarian.
Authoritarian?

"Orwellian" language isn't just any inaccurate language. It is language that is designed to limit heterodox thought, by eliminating words and changing meanings. I do not believe that an aspirational name is 'Orwellian'. As to whether they can legally call themselves a university without offering degree programs, I have no idea about the law in Texas or the US on that matter.

#### Patooka

##### Veteran Member
Nope. Words have specific meanings. You can't change them willy nilly. For example, there is a word that comes to mind calling something a university under false pretenses ("aspirational" or not) whilst asking for monetary gain.

Fraud. Fraud is the word you are looking for.

#### Jarhyn

##### Wizard
Good luck getting accreditation...

#### Metaphor

##### Sjajna Zvijezda
Nope. Words have specific meanings. You can't change them willy nilly. For example, there is a word that comes to mind calling something a university under false pretenses ("aspirational" or not) whilst asking for monetary gain.

Fraud. Fraud is the word you are looking for.
If the enterprise is fraudulent, that will come out in the fullness of time. For example, if they enroll students with the promise of offering accredited degrees and they cannot do so, then they will have committed fraud.

#### Metaphor

##### Sjajna Zvijezda
Nope. Words have specific meanings. You can't change them willy nilly. For example, there is a word that comes to mind calling something a university under false pretenses ("aspirational" or not) whilst asking for monetary gain.

Fraud. Fraud is the word you are looking for.
No. I challenged both your characterisation of 'authoritarian' (how?) and 'Orwellian'. You defended neither.

#### Trausti

##### Contributor
I'm opposed to grifters.
Yeah, me too.

‘Financially hobbled for life’: The elite master’s degrees that don’t pay off

Recent film program graduates of Columbia University who took out federal student loans had a median debt of $181,000. Yet two years after earning their master’s degrees, half of the borrowers were making less than$30,000 a year.

The Columbia program offers the most extreme example of how elite universities in recent years have awarded thousands of master’s degrees that don’t provide graduates enough early career earnings to begin paying down their federal student loans, according to a Wall Street Journal analysis of Education Department data.

#### zorq

##### Veteran Member
I don't actually see anything wrong with the enterprise as presented. They seem fairly upfront about the fact that they aren't dispensing degrees. "Degrees" are kind of an arbitrary and made up concept anyway. Should SAT prep tutor schools be shut down because they don't give out SAT certification and aren't actually affiliated with SAT? Should the local baking and pastry school be shuttered because they aren't certified by an international culinary institution? People pay for information, guidance, and general education all the time.

Elvis Presley doesn't need to teach a single class at, or even acknowledge the existence of the "King's School of Impersonation" and that institution still isn't committing fraud.

#### LoAmmo

##### Member
It's funny how quickly Metaphor's panties get twisted when a man "clearly aspirationally" self-identifies as a woman, yet a non-degree-confirming entity identifying as a university is all good. If anything, a post-surgery trans woman has gone a LOT farther down the road to being a woman than this transparent money-grabbing fake "university" has to being an actual accredited university.

#### Patooka

##### Veteran Member
It's funny how quickly Metaphor's panties get twisted when a man "clearly aspirationally" self-identifies as a woman, yet a non-degree-confirming entity identifying as a university is all good. If anything, a post-surgery trans woman has gone a LOT farther down the road to being a woman than this transparent money-grabbing fake "university" has to being an actual accredited university.
You're not paying attention. One is authoritarian and Orwellian. The other is aspirational. Fuck if I know what the difference is though.

#### thebeave

##### Veteran Member
Why is everyone all of a sudden demanding a precise word meaning for "university" in this thread, but in other active threads we are being lectured about how language is squishy and constantly evolving, re: men, women, male, female, he, she....

#### none

##### Banned
Banned
"well" if "is" has a different "meaning" then "usage" means nothing"?"

#### Patooka

##### Veteran Member
Why is everyone all of a sudden demanding a precise word meaning for "university" in this thread, but in other active threads we are being lectured about how language is squishy and constantly evolving, re: men, women, male, female, he, she....
Because you're comprehensive is flawed. The only person advocating for a precise meaning is me. And I am deliberately doing that because the demand for a less precise meaning for university is coming from the same people who have made gender and sex a hill to die on.

#### laughing dog

##### Contributor
It's funny how quickly Metaphor's panties get twisted when a man "clearly aspirationally" self-identifies as a woman, yet a non-degree-confirming entity identifying as a university is all good. If anything, a post-surgery trans woman has gone a LOT farther down the road to being a woman than this transparent money-grabbing fake "university" has to being an actual accredited university.
You're not paying attention. One is authoritarian and Orwellian. The other is aspirational. Fuck if I know what the difference is though.
It is hard. After all, one can aspire to be authoritarian and Orwellian as well. Or one can be authoritarian but not Orwellian. Or one can be Orwellian but not authoritarian. Or one can simply be disingenuous or hypocritical.

It is my impression that Niall Ferguson is a respected historian. (BTW, he and Ms Ali are married). None of the other people mentioned are respected in their academic fields - they made their names as rebels against "wokeness;". I seriously doubt they expect to start a standard university from scratch - that takes a lot more resources than I suspect they have.

I suspect they will offer a select number of classes from their "liberal" perspective. Without a degree program, their market will be relatively small.

#### Jarhyn

##### Wizard
Why is everyone all of a sudden demanding a precise word meaning for "university" in this thread, but in other active threads we are being lectured about how language is squishy and constantly evolving, re: men, women, male, female, he, she....
Because they are mocking a sudden reversal of mode by a particular population and no more, showing the contradiction implied by holding both of these positions by the people who hold them which is not us.

We don't say "they are not a university" we say "that logic you used before when used here casts aspersions on the coherency of such a rhetorical framework as you are using."

##### Loony Running The Asylum
Staff member
Bari Weiss saying she is sick of complaining.

#### lpetrich

##### Contributor
You know a forum has totally lost its way when its founding principles (free inquiry, free expression of ideas, skepticism and secular humanism) and thought leaders are mocked and ridiculed in favor of a twisted, degenerate and dangerous ideology.
For people who claim to be opposed to calling oneself a victim, right-wingers are very big on saying what victims they are.

#### Metaphor

##### Sjajna Zvijezda
It's funny how quickly Metaphor's panties get twisted when a man "clearly aspirationally" self-identifies as a woman,
No man can become a woman, because mammals cannot change sex.

yet a non-degree-confirming entity identifying as a university is all good.
It's starting up. If you register a company called 'Space Sprockets, Inc' with plans to start manufacturing space sprockets, but you haven't even purchased the first space sprocket machine, is that an act of deception?

I suspect that if the entity that is called 'The University of Austin' starts offering accredited degrees, you will be no less opposed to it.

If anything, a post-surgery trans woman has gone a LOT farther down the road to being a woman than this transparent money-grabbing fake "university" has to being an actual accredited university.
Gender ideologists believe that transwomen are women without having taken any medical or social steps at all.

But, the two situations are not nearly alike. Men cannot become women, because mammals cannot change sex. However, new Universities can be formed. It's been done many times before.

#### Metaphor

##### Sjajna Zvijezda
It's funny how quickly Metaphor's panties get twisted when a man "clearly aspirationally" self-identifies as a woman, yet a non-degree-confirming entity identifying as a university is all good. If anything, a post-surgery trans woman has gone a LOT farther down the road to being a woman than this transparent money-grabbing fake "university" has to being an actual accredited university.
You're not paying attention. One is authoritarian and Orwellian. The other is aspirational. Fuck if I know what the difference is though.
I would say so. You clearly do not know what 'authoritarian' and 'Orwellian' mean.

#### Metaphor

##### Sjajna Zvijezda
Out of interest, exactly how do the cynics on this thread propose anybody start a university and get it through its formative stages, without using the intended name of the university?

#### laughing dog

##### Contributor
It's funny how quickly Metaphor's panties get twisted when a man "clearly aspirationally" self-identifies as a woman, yet a non-degree-confirming entity identifying as a university is all good. If anything, a post-surgery trans woman has gone a LOT farther down the road to being a woman than this transparent money-grabbing fake "university" has to being an actual accredited university.
You're not paying attention. One is authoritarian and Orwellian. The other is aspirational. Fuck if I know what the difference is though.
I would say so. You clearly do not know what 'authoritarian' and 'Orwellian' mean.
That one broke all irony meters.
Out of interest, exactly how do the cynics on this thread propose anybody start a university and get it through its formative stages, without using the intended name of the university?
Having a stated focus on the positives (i.e. what the university will be) instead of complaining about higher ed would be a good start. Having credible and reputable researchers in their fields instead of professional whiners would be another.

#### Metaphor

##### Sjajna Zvijezda
Having a stated focus on the positives (i.e. what the university will be) instead of complaining about higher ed would be a good start. Having credible and reputable researchers in their fields instead of professional whiners would be another.
No, you haven't answered my question. I did not ask 'how would you start a university?'.

I asked how you would 'start a university and get it through its formative stages, without using the intended name of the university?' (emphasis added)

##### Loony Running The Asylum
Staff member
Having a stated focus on the positives (i.e. what the university will be) instead of complaining about higher ed would be a good start. Having credible and reputable researchers in their fields instead of professional whiners would be another.
No, you haven't answered my question. I did not ask 'how would you start a university?'.

I asked how you would 'start a university and get it through its formative stages, without using the intended name of the university?' (emphasis added)
You mean like PragerU or Trump University?

#### Keith&Co.

##### Contributor

I suspect they will offer a select number of classes from their "liberal" perspective. Without a degree program, their market will be relatively small.but unfortunately, they will have their victims. People who will pay money before finding out there's no degree program and that Unseen University credits do not transfer to anyplace that's offering a degree.

#### Metaphor

##### Sjajna Zvijezda
Having a stated focus on the positives (i.e. what the university will be) instead of complaining about higher ed would be a good start. Having credible and reputable researchers in their fields instead of professional whiners would be another.
No, you haven't answered my question. I did not ask 'how would you start a university?'.

I asked how you would 'start a university and get it through its formative stages, without using the intended name of the university?' (emphasis added)
You mean like PragerU or Trump University?
No: I mean how would you start a university and get it through its formative stages--university being an institution that offers accredited degrees which what every cynic in this thread is screaming blue murder about--without using the intended name of the university?

#### Metaphor

##### Sjajna Zvijezda
It's funny how quickly Metaphor's panties get twisted when a man "clearly aspirationally" self-identifies as a woman, yet a non-degree-confirming entity identifying as a university is all good. If anything, a post-surgery trans woman has gone a LOT farther down the road to being a woman than this transparent money-grabbing fake "university" has to being an actual accredited university.
You're not paying attention. One is authoritarian and Orwellian. The other is aspirational. Fuck if I know what the difference is though.
It is hard. After all, one can aspire to be authoritarian and Orwellian as well. Or one can be authoritarian but not Orwellian. Or one can be Orwellian but not authoritarian. Or one can simply be disingenuous or hypocritical.

It is my impression that Niall Ferguson is a respected historian. (BTW, he and Ms Ali are married). None of the other people mentioned are respected in their academic fields - they made their names as rebels against "wokeness;". I seriously doubt they expect to start a standard university from scratch - that takes a lot more resources than I suspect they have.

I suspect they will offer a select number of classes from their "liberal" perspective. Without a degree program, their market will be relatively small.
but unfortunately, they will have their victims. People who will pay money before finding out there's no degree program and that Unseen University credits do not transfer to anyplace that's offering a degree.
What people will do so? The organisation isn't enrolling students yet.

##### Loony Running The Asylum
Staff member
It's funny how quickly Metaphor's panties get twisted when a man "clearly aspirationally" self-identifies as a woman, yet a non-degree-confirming entity identifying as a university is all good. If anything, a post-surgery trans woman has gone a LOT farther down the road to being a woman than this transparent money-grabbing fake "university" has to being an actual accredited university.
You're not paying attention. One is authoritarian and Orwellian. The other is aspirational. Fuck if I know what the difference is though.
It is hard. After all, one can aspire to be authoritarian and Orwellian as well. Or one can be authoritarian but not Orwellian. Or one can be Orwellian but not authoritarian. Or one can simply be disingenuous or hypocritical.

It is my impression that Niall Ferguson is a respected historian. (BTW, he and Ms Ali are married). None of the other people mentioned are respected in their academic fields - they made their names as rebels against "wokeness;". I seriously doubt they expect to start a standard university from scratch - that takes a lot more resources than I suspect they have.

I suspect they will offer a select number of classes from their "liberal" perspective. Without a degree program, their market will be relatively small.
but unfortunately, they will have their victims. People who will pay money before finding out there's no degree program and that Unseen University credits do not transfer to anyplace that's offering a degree.
What people will do so? The organisation isn't enrolling students yet.
No, it's just asking for "donations".

#### Metaphor

##### Sjajna Zvijezda
No, it's just asking for "donations".
That's correct. So what? Is asking for donations wrong? Has the institution deceptively promised university credits for donations?

#### laughing dog

##### Contributor
Having a stated focus on the positives (i.e. what the university will be) instead of complaining about higher ed would be a good start. Having credible and reputable researchers in their fields instead of professional whiners would be another.
No, you haven't answered my question. I did not ask 'how would you start a university?'.

I asked how you would 'start a university and get it through its formative stages, without using the intended name of the university?' (emphasis added)
I did answer your question since the formative stage is the start. Duh.

#### Metaphor

##### Sjajna Zvijezda
Having a stated focus on the positives (i.e. what the university will be) instead of complaining about higher ed would be a good start. Having credible and reputable researchers in their fields instead of professional whiners would be another.
No, you haven't answered my question. I did not ask 'how would you start a university?'.

I asked how you would 'start a university and get it through its formative stages, without using the intended name of the university?' (emphasis added)
I did answer your question since the formative stage is the start. Duh.
You did not.

You said:

Having a stated focus on the positives (i.e. what the university will be) instead of complaining about higher ed would be a good start.

and

Having credible and reputable researchers in their fields instead of professional whiners would be another

How do you do those things without a name for your institution? Do you suggest 'Holding Company for Intended University of Austin'?

Banned

image..

#### Metaphor

##### Sjajna Zvijezda
What is this supposed to establish?

#### none

##### Banned
Banned
What is this supposed to establish?
I guess twitter is a better source of information, today.

#### laughing dog

##### Contributor
Having a stated focus on the positives (i.e. what the university will be) instead of complaining about higher ed would be a good start. Having credible and reputable researchers in their fields instead of professional whiners would be another.
No, you haven't answered my question. I did not ask 'how would you start a university?'.

I asked how you would 'start a university and get it through its formative stages, without using the intended name of the university?' (emphasis added)
I did answer your question since the formative stage is the start. Duh.
You did not.

You said:

Having a stated focus on the positives (i.e. what the university will be) instead of complaining about higher ed would be a good start.

and

Having credible and reputable researchers in their fields instead of professional whiners would be another

How do you do those things without a name for your institution? Do you suggest 'Holding Company for Intended University of Austin'?
Even the most fucking obtuse should be able to get the notion that one could first state the focus and the list of reputable instructors and then come up with the name.

#### LoAmmo

##### Member
I'd like to self-identify as the Prime Minister of Australia. Because, some day, I might be. I don't know how else to identify myself, in this formative stage. "Holding individual for intended Prime Minister of Australia" is fairly clunky. I think I'll stick with "Prime Minister of Australia." Because, you know. Some day. Maybe.

#### Metaphor

##### Sjajna Zvijezda
Even the most fucking obtuse should be able to get the notion that one could first state the focus and the list of reputable instructors and then come up with the name.
So, how do you manage that list of positives (which they already did, by the way) without referring to the institution it is meant to apply to? How do you advertise for credible and reputed researchers without stating where you intend to employ them?

#### Metaphor

##### Sjajna Zvijezda
I'd like to self-identify as the Prime Minister of Australia. Because, some day, I might be. I don't know how else to identify myself, in this formative stage. "Holding individual for intended Prime Minister of Australia" is fairly clunky. I think I'll stick with "Prime Minister of Australia." Because, you know. Some day. Maybe.
So, how would you form a university without picking a name, and not having a name until -- what, exactly? The day you confer your first accredited degree?

#### none

##### Banned
Banned
it's called bullshitting... for some reason it might be kkkangaroo kkkorruption.

#### laughing dog

##### Contributor
Even the most fucking obtuse should be able to get the notion that one could first state the focus and the list of reputable instructors and then come up with the name.
So, how do you manage that list of positives (which they already did, by the way) without referring to the institution it is meant to apply to? How do you advertise for credible and reputed researchers without stating where you intend to employ them?

There really was no list of positives. And one can have a starter list of researchers without advertising. Now, do you have any more evidence of obtuseness you wish to submit?

#### Metaphor

##### Sjajna Zvijezda
There really was no list of positives.

Yes, there was.

And one can have a starter list of researchers without advertising. Now, do you have any more evidence of obtuseness you wish to submit?
Yes. How do you wish to start a university without naming it? You know, the question I asked.

The absolute state of this board.

#### Metaphor

##### Sjajna Zvijezda
@Patooka: at what stage would it be okay for the institution in question to call itself the University of Austin, and what placeholder name do you suggest in the meantime? So that nobody is bamboozled by these obvious charlatans.