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Friday 10 July 2015

Don’t Menshn Tim Hunt Again

And so it came to pass that the ruling council of University College London (UCL) met yesterday, to discuss, among other things, the resignation of Tim Hunt, which had been tendered and accepted following criticism of his comments made during a toast at a lunch for female scientists in South Korea. The row over what he said, and what he meant to say, has been the subject of intense and sometimes bitter debate.
(c) Doc Hackenbush 2014

That debate has not been helped by the obsessive intervention of (thankfully) former Tory MP Louise Mensch, who has selectively blogged about Hunt and UCL, her posts including the most unfortunate and pejorative of language. She has accompanied this with equally obsessive pursuit of her targets on Twitter, these including the Guardian, the BBC, and anyone, especially at UCL, who dares to disagree with her.
Ms Mensch made her demands known at the outset: “UCL has a Council on 9th July … Fellows of UCL, or whoever judges there, should ask that his honorary Professorship be restored … The Royal Society, on similar grounds, should restore his honorary membership of whatever committee he was on … And because of their campaigning and pre-judgement of Sir Tim, which was evidence-free, contrary to good science, Professors Dorothy Bishop and David Colquhoun should, in my view, both be asked to resign from the Diversity Committee of the Royal Society”. Modest as always.
So what happened at yesterday’s meeting? “The ruling council of University College London has unanimously backed the university’s decision to accept the resignation of Sir Tim Hunt in a sexism row that has caused bitter divisions across the scientific community”. There would be no reinstatement, nor any resignations.
Moreover, “In a statement on Thursday evening intended to draw a line under the month-long saga, the council said university management and Hunt were in agreement that reversing the decision would be ‘inappropriate’”. But Ms Mensch made it clear only last weekend that Hunt should be reinstated by UCL. Would she now admit failure?
You jest. All that has emerged since UCL made its judgment known has been an urging to “look over there”, as witness “statement from ucl's council; ucl supporters trying to say they 'wouldn't restore' hon prof - #TimHunt wouldn't accept it”. Could we have an English translation? “Not 'offered', @ucl desperate for a joint statement indeed as @ucl contempt of academia - #TimHunt not given”. So she claims Hunt would not accept reinstatement.
That’s despite her campaign, and one should note that this is all with hindsight. And then came the inevitable smear: “to be clear UCL is a very second-rate college in London that was really lucky to have a Nobel laureate associate with them”. Oh dear. On top of that was claiming a Times editorial as fact: “SO GLAD to see the Times call out the contemptible lie by @Connie_Stlouis #TimHunt”.

Louise Mensch failed to get Hunt reinstated. Now she has devalued that campaign by descending to abuse. And remember, they allowed her to become an MP.


Anonymous said...

This bilious idiot Mensch is a clueless nasty, clearly regretting her move to anonymity in New York.

But with regard to the status of UCL, second rate, here we have evidence of their second rate ness:


University College London

2016 League Table Ranking 13

That'll be the second rate above, Birmingham, Southampton, York, Edinburgh

Laughable woman!

Andy McDonald said...

Ah, but she went to Oxford, dontcharknow? Everywhere's second rate to her.

Anonymous said...

So, farewell then, Tim Hunt.

Gone - presumably to contemplate the size of his penis. Scientifically of course.


Arnold said...

Suppose (to pick a name at random), Richard Littlejohn had said "Let me tell you about my trouble with dopey birds. Three things happen when they are in the newsroom. You fall in love with them, they fall in love with you, and when you criticise them, they cry". Wouldn't Mensch be spitting rivets?

rob said...

Oooooooh nooo mother! It's I'm sorry to have to mention that woman's name again, again, again and again.

And again and again and again....................

The resignation is evident in your post! Carry on!

Anonymous said...

This demented, self-deluded, preening, self-important person has gone completely off the rails. She is now calling herself a journalist. Fourth or fifth occupation in 2 years. Her brittleness and thin skin are pretty remarkable. The only consolation is she continues to lose Twitter fans who're bored or offended by her tiresome 'crusade'. Which is nothing more than an excuse to express her obvious deep-seated anger and need for attention. I eagerly look forward to the next trivial 'cause' she takes up- the more trivial the better so as to corner the market on it and not face any real challenges to her outrageously dishonest rages and rants. I feel sorry for the poor thing.