For more on the scandal, and particularly Assemblyman and Iraq Veteran Kieran Michael Lalor's outraged response, and the CUNY's evolving claims over Petraeus's salary, see Corey Robin's typically excellent blog post. Undoubtedly, Professor Robin will continue to update his blog as more information becomes available.
Hunter College lecturer Jennifer Gaboury's Facebook comments on the appointment deserve to be shared more widely:
One piece of the Petraeus-at-CUNY story is getting lost in some of the coverage. When, in the revealed email exchange, the General brags that he could have gotten much more money elsewhere but the kvelling Dean Kirschner (she defines it for him) and Chancellor Goldstein convinced him that this was the place to teach, they mean Macaulay Honors College and not the City University of New York at large. This is the semi-private college within the public university, sprinkled with the fairy dust of philanthropists. It is not part of CUNY where adjuncts who make $3,000 per course teach 65% of the classes and often don’t have adequate office space to meet with students. This is Chancellor Goldstein’s crowning achievement, to have privatized part of a public institution and be able to brag about the accomplishments of these lucky few. Meant to attract high performing students who might have gone elsewhere, Goldstein recently shared on The Brian Lehrer Show that this past year there were 10,500 applications for Macaulay’s 400 available seats. And no wonder, students get a terrific education at CUNY; MHC admittance comes with free tuition, free room and board (where dorms are already rare), and a laptop. And as a “University Scholar” you have access to an “Opportunity Fund” to help support time to study abroad or take an unpaid internship. Yes, one will do better in school with a little money and a room of one’s own.
I look forward to learning more about the ways in which Petraeus’s track record “of excellence” as a “scholar and researcher” qualifies him for a line as a Distinguished Visiting Professor.
I’m glad to see in this mess that some attention is being paid to the issue of contingent labor and compensation. The downside of the pay scandal is that we aren’t having a conversation about making Petraeus a Distinguished Visiting Professor despite his alleged links to torture centers and drone strikes responsible for civilian deaths.