Author: Evan Osborne

The Meaning of the Self-Destructive Strike at WSU

On January 22, a portion of the unionized faculty at Wright State University (WSU) in Dayton, Ohio went on strike. WSU is a regional state university with a medical school, several units that award PhDs, and many that grant master’s degrees. It has many nontraditional students and pockets of true excellence; it is a national leader in educating veterans and the disabled, for example. It is also where I have taught economics for almost a quarter-century. I applied for and received sabbatical for this year some time ago and so, as the strike has dragged on, I have watched this drama unfold at both a physical and emotional distance. The strike has been the culmination of years of bitterness between the faculty union (not, note, the faculty) and the administration. It is widely believed that the root cause of the strike was stark differences between the union and the administration over how to overcome a severe financial crisis earlier in the decade that was unquestionably the fault of previous administrators, yet has impacted the entire …

The Diversity Ideology

Editor’s note: this piece is the first in an ongoing series on the subject of diversity. If you would like to join the diversity debate please comment below or send a submission to pitch@quillette.com. The merits of diversity are much discussed these days. It is increasingly accepted that the more diverse society is perforce the stronger society, especially if it is a liberal democracy. And why shouldn’t that be? In many different contexts, from ecosystems to financial portfolios, greater diversity leads to greater robustness and sustainability. But one response to growing diversity has been the rise of an accompanying ‘diversity ideology’ antithetical to much of what helps modern societies flourish. Many of these societies freely acknowledge and justly celebrate their ethnic and religious diversity. But ideologies come with ideologues, the most visible of which in this case are diversity consultants in business, people with titles such as Vice-President for Diversity or professors of various ethnic and religious studies in academia, and political pressure groups. Such people tend to assume a list of cultures (subject to change …