Joe Asch


Dartmouth by Numbers

A management consultant learns to "push the numbers:" to look for the real meaning behind figures advanced by corporate executives.

Wright Should Sanction

To the Editor: Several years ago, when certain fraternity brothers said "Wah Hoo Wah, scalp them bitches," and other brothers published an in-house newspaper describing their sexual exploits, their Greek organizations were subjected to harsh sanctions by the Wright administration under what I described in a May 29, 2001 D column as Dartmouth's unwritten speech code. Now we learn that the Al-Nur Dartmouth Muslim Student Association website contains the passage, "O Muslim, there is a Jew behind me.

Still Wrong

Barry Scherr's reply ("The Administration Strikes Back," April 6) to my column (The "Administrative Life Initiative," April 2) is a model of subtle dissimulation that merits an effort at deconstruction. For instance, Provost Scherr knows my background well enough to know that it has more intellectual and experiential depth than being the co-owner of the River Valley Club, one of my companies. The basis for my critique of the College's undisciplined administrative spending comes from my education at the Yale Law School, my years in London as a management consultant at Bain and Co. and my business relationships in 40 countries over the last two decades. That said, this kind of background is not necessary to recognize that Jim Wright's administrative spending growth of 57.5 percent over the past five years, in an environment that had inflation of only 11 percent, is an example of mismanagement. I would welcome an effort by Provost Scherr to deal directly with the substance of my criticism: He dismisses the almost $10 million increase in the administrative budget as inconsequential in the context of an overall College budget of more than $400 million, but he ignores Jim Wright's attempt to cut the swim team to save $200,000.

The Administrative Life Initiative

As I walked through the College's new Human Resources office on Lebanon Street last year, I commented to the director's assistant how nice the offices looked.

Wright Priorities

The debate over the College's budget difficulties has been off-target: the College community has focused on the details of recent cost cuts and entirely lost sight of the Wright administration's true priorities. Jim Freedman began, and Jim Wright continues, an effort radically to transform Dartmouth from an excellent undergraduate-centered college, coexisting with a small town, into a research university dominating its surroundings. The pursuit of this goal is the true reason for the ongoing demise of independent little libraries, the cutbacks in the number of courses being taught and the attempted eradication of entire sports teams.

The Dartmouth Speech Code

Q: In light of the recent decisions regarding Psi Upsilon and Zeta Psi fraternities, does Dartmouth have a speech code? A: I think that would be obvious.