A few days ago, perhaps with the hope of attracting the attention of the national media that towed along, Louisiana College President Joe Aguillard announced at a campaign event he hosted for the erstwhile Republican Presidential candidate Newt Gingrich that he would “consider shutting down” Louisiana College if Obamacare ever became the law of the land.
I commend the students who bravely spoke out against Aguillard’s remarks, and I earnestly hope that, unlike others who have dared to criticize him, they will not be reprimanded for exercising the very same First Amendment rights that he disingenuously seeks to protect. The students who spoke out against Aguillard are absolutely right, though I’d add a few things.
First, in my opinion, his leadership has been an abysmal failure: The school is now threatened with sanctions for failing to comply with its accreditation standards. According to an internal report that was leaked to the media, it now faces over thirty million dollars worth of deferred maintenance costs. (And after it was leaked, Aguillard’s response was bafflingly stupid, essentially accusing the media of a Satanic plot against him). He’s lied to the public about his courtship of the governments of Kuwait and Saudi Arabia. He’s fired professors who point out his failures. And with all due respect, I am not holding my breath for his proposals for a law school and medical school; after all, the man can’t even ensure basic accreditation compliance for the undergraduate school, which should be considered his core responsibility. On top of all of that, aside from the unconfirmed gossip, Joe Aguillard’s salary has increased exponentially throughout the last few years. From SaveOurLC:
2010 (FY 8-1-2010 to 7-31-2011)
Aguillard 202,594; Quarles 115,287; Hargis 99,238; Johnson 94,957; Pack 83,995.
Aguillard 190,813; Travers 100,396; Quarles 98,973; Hargis 89,337; Johnson 87,954; Pack 82,376
Aguillard 179,159; Quarrels 92,640; Johnson 88,031; Hargis 88,025; Pack 80,970; Travers 46,789
Aguillard 164,000; Sumrall 101,750; Quarles 93,008; Spears 92,249; Hargis 90,000; Pack 81,684; Dunn 80,800; Ferry 77,063; Packer 74,280; Campbell 71,250
Aguillard 132,338; Sumrall 111,000; Quarles 90,236; Hargis 88,000; Spears 86,228; Howell 71,938; Thames 69,196; Rushing 68,059; Neal 62,368
Aguillard 105,575; Townsend 90,557; Hargis 83,028; Thames 66,874; Rushing 62,360
Lee 147,030; Hawkins 105,128; Townsend 89,000; Hargis 81,600; Aguillard 69,738
Aguillard has been receiving exponential payraises every single year, despite the fact that Louisiana College has continued to struggle, despite the threat of sanctions, despite those “evil” reports on deferred maintenance. Apparently, the Board at LC awards grandiosity over effectiveness. And now, Joe Aguillard’s latest ploy is to attempt to convince everyone in our community that his “faith,” which allows him and his institution the ability to receive our money, tax-free, somehow prevents women from accessing birth control medication. Every sperm is sacred, even if you can’t prove it, right?
To all the LC defenders, that’s fine. Seriously. But in fairness, there should be one precondition: No more taxpayer dollars. If this is all truly about the government infringing on your ability to practice your own religion, then, for Chistsakes, don’t take the government’s money; otherwise, when you do, you’re engaging in a taxpayer-subsidized establishment of religion, which is in contravention of the First Amendment.
Joe Aguillard needs money from all of us in order to ensure that his school operates; he can’t do it on his own. Let’s make that clear. Indeed, that is the ONLY reason why he’d threaten to shut down Louisiana College over a federal law he personally (and I believe, moronically) opposes. If he could do it on his own, why would he ever need to threaten to close the school?
I call his bluff. I think he’s nothing more than an amateur publicity hound. And I dare him: Close LC over contraception coverage in the Obamacare bill. Do it.
Guess what, Mr. Aguillard? When and if you ever do, people won’t remember your failed attempt at battling for your singular right to deny your female employees medication. Instead, they’ll remember your legacy of failure. They’ll remember the threat of academic sanctions. They’ll remember the deferred maintenance. They’ll remember when you ate a worm on camera, your bizarre antics, the rumors that have surrounded you, the fact that your salary has nearly doubled while the core institution has suffered. They’ll also remember your Board and how they not only failed the institution they swore to protect but also the expectations and hope of an entire region. They won’t remember birth control pills or the morning after pill or your non-scientific claims about the sanctity of a male orgasm (because that’s really what this is all about); they will remember your failures as a leader. So, close the school. Please, close the school. Make good on your threats. Close LC. Shut it down now. Prove your point. Go ahead.
Or, just stop taking money from the rest of us. I hear that Kuwait and Saudi Arabia pledged a bunch of money. Maybe you can ask them instead.
I have 2 children who attend LC. Coincidentally, at least 1 is recorded as speaking out against Aguillard’s remarks in the video. I have urged caution in LC’s purging of undesireables such as Catholics.
I strongly support the school’s right to make policies consistent with the founding principles, in this particular case the objection of the Louisiana Baptist Convention and Louisiana College to providing abortion coverage. It should be no surprise to anyone they register this objection and seek to defend their right to do so.
Having said that, before I saw the news coverage, but after my children relayed what had happened, I said, “Aguillard is bluffing. He doesn’t have the authority or influence to close the school. He serves at the discretion of the board.” I then added, “He is an attention [expletive deleted – rhymes with ‘door’].” While I also explained to the children about the overall controversey, this dispute over whether private, religious institutions are allowed to exclude such coverage, I reiterated the right to freedom of expression and our right, generally, to disagree peaceably on matters such as this.
And, you are unequivocally correct that Aguillard has been an unqualified disaster as a leader. He has failed in his role as administrator, shepard, father-figure, just in every way imaginable. His only success is his personal rewards and drawing severe (and justified) criticism towards this once great institution of learning.
Great minds think alike, Lamar. Apparently ours do, too (sometimes).
I would like to know why Aguillard’s assistant, Joseph Cole was sent away with one year of pay and told to never come back. He left some time last fall and will receive pay until this fall. Every 2 weeks he gets a check. What did he know or do?
A year? It must be really bad! They only gave Tim Whitman six months after he slept with a student.
No one will likely ever know what Cole knows if it’s true he’s taking bribe money. That time frame, if it’s correct puts them suspiciously just past SACS final ruling on accreditation, would it not? Aguillard uses ‘hush’ money very effectively and for those who refuse it he retaliates in whichever ways he can with the full support of LC’s legal budget. Those numbers would be interesting, money spent on legal bills both before Joe and since Joe.
If Searcy is now also on his way out, as rumored, I wonder if he’ll just disappear as suddenly from campus as Cole did, and how much hush money will he get, if any? Wasn’t he the one who was responsible for all the accreditation stuff?? Everyone on campus knows the administration is run by Joe, all others are just faces to fill positions. And is Joe now also trying to move Quarels out and away as rumored?
Why in God’s name is it that no one has stopped to count the bodies since Joe’s reign of terror began? Foolish people. Are there none with the intestinal fortitude to do what is right, tyrant non-withstanding?
I heard that as he prayed at the Ron Paul rally- he prayed for “the wrath of God to come down on Obama”. Now whatever your politics- that is something that should not be said lightly. Does anyone have that on video? Confirm or deny?
If true, that is highly disturbing.
Aguillard didn’t pray for the wrath of God to come down on Obama, but I can understand why someone who was there may have been a little disturbed by his remarks about the sitting President and then, immediately thereafter, “the wrath of God.”
Here is his quote, “Whether we march on Washington… Stop President Obama from coming in here and boarding up this college. Where…Especially when, we call upon the wrath of all mighty God to stop this murderous intervention into our religious freedom.”
This isn’t quite praying for the wrath of God to come down on Obama but it is still disturbing. The part that I find most interesting is that Obama could not care less about LC. He never threatened to board up LC. Aguillard is threatening to close the scool not Obama.
no fan of Joe but TV5 was doing its best liberal journalism copy with finding, a black woman in dreads, science majors and a psych major with a pin in her eyebrow. call it stereotyping but liberals i bet. overall this was just a giant turd of journalism. the journalism just reflects whats in charge in Central Louisiana. Mainly decent , hard working people here but this place is run by liberal politicians and lawyers. its like a time capsule of the Long Administration.
The psych major has a mole above her eyebrow, not a “pin” as you say. Sorry if that crushes your stereotype.
Jay, I’m the one with the “pin” over my eyebrow. Sadly, Ace Midnight is correct. My apologies to demolishing your stereotypical thoughts about psych majors. Also, I am by no means a liberal, however I have no problem voicing my opinion. Just because Dr. Aguillard has a larger vehicle to voice his opinion does not make my opinion any less valid.
How is a 6%-ish raise per year considered exponential?
It’s the very definition of exponential. If S(t) represents the salary t years from now under 6% annual growth, then S(t) = S(0)(1.06)^t.
How is it not? Seriously, in the aggregate, how, on earth, could you argue that it’s not exponential? I stand by the claim. You think it’s commonplace for people to get a 6% pay raise every single year, irrespective of their performance?
Several industries offer comparable annual cost of living raises. None of those industries that I’m familiar with classify 6% as exponential. I’m arguing your use of hyperbole, not whether he’s entitled to a raise.
I’m not very good with math, but he’s gone from ~$69k to well over $200k in 9 years. I know he became president in 2005, but that’s 50% from $132k to $202k. Overall his pay has TRIPLED since 2003. It appears his increases have dipped to “merely” 6% the last couple of years.
The US military has been taking increases in the 1.5 to 2.5 percent range for several years. Joe is not comparable to our men and women in uniform.
Another thing to consider is that during this time frame faculty only got raises once. It was a three percent raise. They did also get a two percent raise for thsi year but we don’t know yet how that compares to what Aguillard got. So, as president he takes $70,000 in raises while his faculty, may of shom have kids on state insurance because htey can’t afford LC’s $700/month plan only get one three percent raise. A true servant leader.
A tripled increase in salary is indeed large, but still not exponential. I’m indifferent about the issues of justified/unjustified pay raises or alleged lack of leadership. I couldn’t care less how a private institution chooses to runs its business.
I’m arguing against extreme exaggeration in journalism in an effort to win a crowd.
Ben, this argument is a bit of a distraction. Strictly speaking you are correct that the growth in Aguillard’s salary could not be easily written in exponential form. But according to webster’s exponential means: expressible or approximately expressible by an exponential function; especially : characterized by or being an extremely rapid increase. The point Lamar was making was that this growth is “characterized by or being an extremely rapid increase.” He was not trying to mislead readers as he gave the actual numbers from the 990’s. He may not have been as precise as he should have been but it is hard to fault him too much when the claims of the administration completely lack precision…or maybe even honesty.
Forgive the distraction.
Have you noticed..his supporters have been oddly quiet this time around?? Interesting…
I hear he likes dudes too…just sayin…and not just that longhaired sandle-wearing jew he’s always talking about either 😉
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What about the Board of Trustees. They hired him. And so far take no action. Who are they? Leading professionals and business people ( Baptists , of course) from throughout La. and ministers of our most prestigeous and education oriented churches , for sure. I am certain the same caliber of folks who served under Presidents Cottingham , Godbold , Guinn, Lynn and Lee , right? Be nice if the media would publish names and occupations and churches. Just to confirm we have the best and brightest.