Keep in mind that’s not what the headline says, which is a more neutral “UT law dean forced to step down.” But what else do you call “a $500,000 forgivable loan” to UT Dean Larry Sager “at a time when deans, vice presidents and other top university officials were under a salary freeze”? When you give people money they don’t have to pay back, that’s not a loan, that’s a gift. (I also wonder whether Dean Sager declared this money on his taxes. Or did he not have to, because it was a “loan”?) And slush fund seems to be the proper term for a fund from which sums can be doled out without administrative accountability.
Or, to put it another way: If it were revealed that University of Texas head football coach Mack Brown had such a fund, to receive funds from or to dole out at his discretion, not only would we be calling it a slush fund, he would be fired, National Championship notwithstanding. Should the UT Law School be held to a lesser standard than the UT Athletics Department?
No wonder the Texas Public Policy Foundation continues to advocate for lower administrative costs in higher education, among many other needed reforms. This most recent incident shows such reform is still badly needed.
(Hat tip: Tax Prof Blog via Instapundit.)