Wednesday, January 11, 2017
#HookEm: Team Hall asked complicated lawyer questions while team McRaven tells BALD-FACED LIES....
"and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus."
"The right to be informed is an individual right"; that sentence, delivered by Wallace Hall's attorney at this morning's Texas Supreme Court hearing on the UT Admissions cover-up, is the best one line description we've ever heard about the core issue of this case.
Hall's attorney argued that the way the legislature has defined a Regent's fiduciary duty to the University requires individual autonomy for each regent. As he explained, a regent has "a duty to be informed on the issues." We might not be a lawyer, but we believe this is covered by the principle of "duh."
Most of the questions from the Justices dealt with the legal doctrine of ultra vires. To be honest, this discussion got into legal weeds we didn't understand. That being said, the macro-level takeaway was that this was a discussion of the finer points of the law.
Chancellor McRaven's team opened with an irrelevant ode to his "37 year military career" and how it taught him to "respect the chain of command." Did you know that Chancellor McRaven had previously served in the military?!? Neither did we! Don't get us wrong, we seem to remember reading somewhere about some Admiral who acted as the Obama administration's point man in covering up the death of Seal Team 6, but we'd never heard that Chancellor McRaven once spent time in the military. That being said, we were entertained by the Chancellor's phalanx of somewhere between 7 and 12 lawyers and it's similarity to a certain pop culture reference:
As to substance, Chancellor McRaven's team came up with an innovative new legal approach called "the doctrine of bald-faced lies." They actually had the nerve to claim that McRaven implemented a "fundamental overhaul" of the admissions process which rendered Regent Hall's suit moot. No, he didn't. They changed the rules to explicitly allow what they've already been doing. That's it. But the UT politburo actually claimed in open court that this represented "fundamental overhaul." Sheesh.
Then they tried to claim that the names of all the legislators of sent letters were already known to the public. That claim is a farce and we can personally prove it. If the names of all the legislators who sought preferential admissions treatment were already well known, then how were we able to exclusively break the news that Charlie Geren has sent one of those letters nearly two years after the first round of names broke?!?
Bottom Line: It's out of our hands, but we're content that everything has been left on the field.