In regards to our coverage of the Hailey study, here is what Utah State University is saying (From The Deseret News):
Critics who have posted comments on Internet “blog” sites – the arena where doubt was first cast about the documents CBS obtained – are calling Hailey a “fraud,” alleging his findings are politically motivated and that other USU officials may have somehow guided his study.
Now that Hailey and the school are under fire for the research, the plan is to respond aggressively through the media, according to John DeVilbiss, USU director of public relations and marketing.
“We want to make it right for both the professor and the university,” DeVilbiss said. He called critics of Hailey “mean-spirited,” adding that in the end the controversy will reflect “positively” on the institution. “It is not a political issue, it is an academic one.”
Without a request for an interview, USU President Kermit Hall called the Desert Morning News with his own take on the situation.
“Whoever it is,” Hall said of the e-mails, “is clearly trying to intimidate the university and trying to intimidate Professor Hailey.”
Hall called Hailey’s research “legitimate” and said the professor has every right to engage in and publicize the research.
“There’s been an effort to suggest that the administration put him up to this – the answer to that is, ‘wrong,'” Hall added. “There’s a suggestion that the purpose of his work is to join some kind of political action – that’s wrong.”
Hall called the blogging and e-mails the “worst kind of smear” against academic research and the opportunity for academics to share their research within academe and with the “wider” public.For the record, I was not contacted by the Deseret News for this article.
Our response is forthcoming, but I’m glad to note the support of Dr. Joseph Newcomer, whose detailed findings on the CBS memos are still the gold standard of academic research on the subject. I spoke with Dr. Newcomer at length today and he has nothing but high praise for the work done here at Wizbang (and elsewhere) on the Hailey report. As a peer of Dr. Hailey’s, he is amazed at the shoddiness of the work and has serious issues with the methods employed and conclusions reached. Expect additional criticism of Dr. Hailey and USU from Dr. Newcomer in the coming days.
PS – I realize comparing Hailey and Newcomer as peers does Dr. Newcomer a great disservice…