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Professor Hailey is Back -- and He Outdoes Himself


I'll go ahead and put the word "draft" on top of this thing in red. Therefore I can write with impunity knowing that whatever I write, I can take back later and say it was just a draft. A single word gives me Papalesque infallibility. (if this is all new to you, that's an inside joke)

I was really content to let the whole Professor Hailey thing die. But he has now converted his site to a 13 page missive, attacking Kevin, Wizbang, Dr. Newcomer and bloggers in general. Ironically, I escape his wrath because I am, apparently, a figment of Kevin's imagination. (more on that later) Of course the link to his rant is subject to wild change because he keeps changing his story. When he does, we'll post his 13 pager here.

AND to be clear, I'd rather not write this... But I must. He has thrown around reckless charges including that we deleted everything on him from our archives. (HA- That's some of our best content- Well, that and Paris Hilton.) To set the record straight, I'm making the point by point and Kevin is addressing the bigger picture.

This is going to be one of the hardest things I've ever written. How do you reply to 13 pages of delusional babblings while keeping it interesting and not taking 13 pages yourself? For the sake of brevity, I'll only reply to accusations he makes against us. I won't delve into the rest of his delusions arguments. Here is my best effort....

Rather than just write a good old fashioned rant calling all us bloggers Poo Poo Heads, the Professor writes about "alternative narratives." This gives his to the opportunity to say things without actually saying them. (that will be more clear later) It is his way of pretending his rant is not a rant but an academic work. (he is sooo above us)

INTRODUCTION ...Recently, I examined the Killian memos with the hope of identifying the font family used to produce them. I concluded that the typeface belonged to a family of fonts called Typewriter, a subset of the Slab Serif font family, and they seemed to have been typed. I then described my reasoning in a report. The result was both amazing and painful. During a two week period in September, I received hundreds of emails, the most coherent of which accused me of fraud, charlatanism, academic misconduct and worse. Others contacted the administration at my university insisting that I be immediately fired. Then, as suddenly as it started, it stopped. The attacks appear to have been orchestrated by a fellow named Kevin Alward at a blog site called Wizbangblog.com.

This paper, however, is not about the memos or about the bloggers, it is about the arguments I saw and how, in an organic text, I was able to respond to the arguments and the bloggers were able to respond to mine.

So he was not trying to change the outcome of the election, he was just some guy minding his own business when "Kevin and the Wizbangers*" attacked. (*sounds like the name of a 60's band) AND it was all orchestrated by Karl Rove Kevin Aylward. The professor says, "Then, as suddenly as it started, it stopped." He doesn't understand the life cycle of a story in the blogosphere or the fact that he is boring.

The arguments I saw from the bloggers were seldom logical, ranging from classic ad hominem arguments to personal attacks, to straw men and red herrings, and even prestidigitation,...

Yes my fellow bloggers, you practice a black art. You can magically provide links to work Professor Hailey has never seen, you can de-tangle his academebabble. You are magicians, casting spells over your readers. -- Before you get insulted by his words, let me remind you that more simple cultures often think technology is magic. Like the fabled tribesmen who fear the white man can steal his soul with a photo, Dr. Hailey thinks what we do is magic. To him it probably is.

A large community on the Internet took great offense at the CBS accusations and began a blog attack on CBS in general and Dan Rather in particular. They found experts that proved to their satisfaction (and ultimately to the satisfaction of the media) that the memos were faked.

This really sets the tone for the whole thing. The fact Dan Rather and CBS were dead wrong is completely irrelevant. We "took great offense at the CBS accusations" so we "attacked." [Warning- Trying to follow Hailey may hurt a rational person's brain.]

I found myself the foolish orator who infuriated the crowds of Rome, facing an angry mob throwing rotten fruit, fecal matter and rocks at me, and demanding that my academic career be put to death.

For the record, I'm sure it was Frank J. who threw the fecal matter.

Worse, as they examined the report, it quickly seemed clear that I was manufacturing evidence (some of my characters which I then cut and pasted from Photoshop) even as I claimed the memos were Typewriter. To them, I was obviously faking my findings, and when they pointed out the faked materials in the document, I often corrected my content the same day. For example, at one point a blogger/hacker loaded the index of my server onto his system and downloaded all of my files. He found a PSD file where I had created a superscript th that subsequently appeared in my reproduction of the memo and immediately posted it as proof that I was falsifying my evidence.
And Professor, if you are reading this- and I know someone will mail it to you, I have downloaded your entire website as evidence and I saved screen caps of it, so dont bother delete it. I also had an interesting phone call with the head of your department. You might give him a call. (Posted on Wizbangblog.com by Paul, emph. mine, name included because I believe it to be a pseudonym).

OK this pissed me off. You can tell me my momma wears combat boots but geeze... to not acknowledge I exist? Professor, why not read Kevin and I... We write about completely different things in completely different styles. Go ahead and search the archives for "abortion." He and I are on completely different sides of that issue. And as for your love or "free speech and academic freedom" Kev lets me make anti-abortion arguments and never says a word.

But on the substance... Yes Professor, when you claim you typed something but in reality you used Photoshop to paste it together and don't tell people, we will call that faking evidence. (We silly bloggers.)

If I Photoshopped a picture of you with Attila the Hun, wouldn't you call it a fake?

And Sigh -I guess I have to answer one more charge.- Professor, if you don't know the difference between a hacker and someone who looks at your website, should you really be trusted with your own site?

My response was to rewrite, making it clearer that all of the characters I used were produced in PhotoShop. Furthermore, I spoke to Kenneth for the third time...

You spoke to a Kenneth? Did you get the frequency from him?

Hailey doesn't even know the names of the people he spoke to 3 times... Talk about delusional.

But the Web components of the media change as the news changes. One commonly sees an article with a check and the word updated next to it. The news media sees their web sites as organic, and updating justified if corrections are necessary. On the other hand, after issuing a retraction and apology for defaming me and the university, [that's not what it said -ED] Wizbangblog.com removed the most damming [sic] material from their site. Later, they also removed the retraction and apology. Now the site presents their latest and completely different narrative without the defamation and without retraction and apology. (As of this date, 13 December 2004, their site has no reference to me or these narratives.)

Sigh- Professor, I'm not old enough to know firsthand. Please tell me the drugs in the 60's were worth the flashbacks.

Updated did he say? My original post had 8 updates and then I wrote a new post to explain more. Perhaps the Professor mistook blogs for regular news media.

And professor if you think we deleted all references to you -- Put down the pipe and do a search of the site. You are still (in)famous. We have deleted nothing. (unlike you) Why would we? Our work has withstood peer review... Yours has not.

But the support was not simply rhetorical. In many cases, like the PC editor, supporters began assisting me with my writing. As I wrote furiously during the worst of the attacks, Dr. Bruce Adler watched over my virtual shoulder, pointing out mechanical errors, misspellings, misplaced calls to figures and the like.

Who is the renowned Dr. Bruce Adler you ask? Google: Dr. Bruce Adler | Professor Bruce Adler | "Bruce Adler Ph.D" Dunno, Google's never heard of him.

Most important from my point of view is the behavior of the administration of USU. Kermit Hall, President of the University, is well known on campus for his support for creativity and creative processes.

Ut Oh Kermie- He's taking you down with him. Tell me, do you really want your career tied to this work?

On Friday, December 13th, Wizbangblog removed all reference to me and Haileygate from their site. I had hoped they would help me write this paper, but I guess I will have to find it elsewhere.

This really puzzles me. How dumb is he? And I ask that as a serious question. Does the man not know that blogs are updated on a continual basis? Does he not know we have archives??? Does he really not know he can search for his name. Or is it the pipe speaking?

I know he knows how to use a search feature. After all, when he wanted to create font examples for his "research" he simply went to myfonts.com and did a search to produce random typefaces he claimed were related. Of course he claimed the were all part of a "family" he had knowledge of... when it fact the only thing they had in common was he got them from the same website. --And for you Professors out there-- Is a random myfonts.com search considered a viable academic citation?? Just wondering.

HOLD ON TO YOUR HATS DEAR READERS- Dr. Hailey is going to teach us about logic...

In logic, attack the person means to attack the person within your syllogism.

-A says B
-A is an ex-convict
-Therefore B is a lie.

No Professor, let me explain it to you.

-A says B
-A faked the evidence he used to to draw conclusion B.
-Therefore A is a liar.

You read my first post that is the EXACT way I made the argument.

The Professor foolishly spends a few pages attacking Dr. Newcomer. I'll not defend Newcomer. That would like me coming to Bruce Lee's defense in a street fight. Or giving Ken Jennings tips on how to win at Jeopardy.

The narrative evolves and changes even now. Perhaps in response to this article, information about me is disappearing from the blog sites. On the other hand, I began receiving so many hack attacks, I had to remove virtually all information from my server.

SO you guys are deleting your stuff too? Hack Attacks? Loony tune!

Kevin should have known that it was illegal for his posters to seize my images and other files from my site and use them on his. Yet, until today, my images were posted all over his site.

Glad this guy is no professor of law. He's never heard of "Fair Use."

SO, in short, his argument is that we are a bunch of dung throwing, server hacking, personal attacking, post deleting, illogical misfits.. Oh and I don't exist.

And he wonders why he gets no respect.


Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Professor Hailey is Back -- and He Outdoes Himself:

» King of Fools linked with More Wizbang Antics

» The Jawa Report linked with Wizbang Stole from My Site!

» bohnsack.com linked with Professor Hailey is Back

» bohnsack.com linked with Professor Hailey is Back

» bohnsack.com linked with Professor Hailey is Back

Comments (25)

Dung throwing hacker/attack... (Below threshold)
The Old Coot:

Dung throwing hacker/attackers? Thanks...coffee spewed all over my office. You guys are the best.

Egads, Paul, you have my re... (Below threshold)

Egads, Paul, you have my respect and so does Kevin (I think he knows that already) but man, that was a tough piece to write. When the fog clears from my brain, I'll come back and read what Kevin wrote above you.

Oh, I can always tell the difference between your two different writing styles immediately - a figment of Kevin's imagination? Yeah, right, that'll be the day.


Hey Old Coot - they are the... (Below threshold)

Hey Old Coot - they are the best!! Wish I had seen your comment before I finished mine. I think my jaw is still on my lap. :-)


Confession time: I <a href=... (Below threshold)

Confession time: I hacked his server. Sorry you had to take the fall for that, Paul. But I swear I never threw the dung, just downloaded it.

"-A says B-A faked t... (Below threshold)
hopeless pedantry:

"-A says B
-A faked the evidence he used to to draw conclusion B.
-Therefore B is a liar."

I hate to be pedantic here, but the last line should probably be either "A is a liar" or "B is a lie", since A is a person and B is a statement.

I love it when people with ... (Below threshold)

I love it when people with a Hollywood understanding of technology scream "hacker!!!"

"Professor" Hailey, any reasonably competent professional involved with web technologies would demolish that accusation in five minutes, and three of those would probably consist of establishing his credentials.

Cindy: I think they may bot... (Below threshold)
The Old Coot:

Cindy: I think they may both be figments. Anyway, no more liquids near me when noodling around this blog!

Is it really fair to hammer... (Below threshold)

Is it really fair to hammer him so mercilessly, Paul? I mean, it's obvious the guy has a lot of issues already.

Now he's being fisked by non-entities.

Murdoc (a psedonym)

Did anyone else notice that... (Below threshold)

Did anyone else notice that the "good" professor doesn't even know what day it is? He said Friday, December 13th.

hopeless pedantry ... (Below threshold)

hopeless pedantry


Read enough Hailey and you get stupid.

Thanks, typo corrected.


Wow. They don't call it ... (Below threshold)

Wow. They don't call it HIGHer education for nothing.

Being on the same campus with this guy Hailey would take me straight back to my late teens wandering kitchens everywhere with two knifes, one cardboard wrapping paper tube and a converted inhaler looking for hot rangestoves..... I mean, he's that good.

So Kevin is Paul is Kevin? ... (Below threshold)

So Kevin is Paul is Kevin? Then who is this Jay fellow?

I LOVE THIS PLACE!!!<... (Below threshold)



If Paul doesn't exist, does... (Below threshold)
Steve L.:

If Paul doesn't exist, does this site really exist?

And who the hell is the walrus then?

If we collectively throw mo... (Below threshold)

If we collectively throw more dung at him, will he put it in his bong and smoke it?

Hmm... I can just see the faculty Christmas, I mean, holiday party now... 'Hey, did you have some of Hailey's brownies? Dave's not here.....'

Is it me, or does Hailey's ... (Below threshold)
Bud Tugley:

Is it me, or does Hailey's writing seem like he's channeling Montgomery Burns and Jesse Jackson simultaneously?

Re: " Professor, if you don... (Below threshold)

Re: " Professor, if you don't know the difference between a hacker and someone who looks at your website, should you really be trusted with your own site?"

Yes, Paul, it bothers me too - in a national security sense. If it was this easy to read Hailey's work product at his site, how easy would it be for terrorists to read his other work? How secure is he with his site when he did/does/will do (?) work for Sandia? This from the University's page listing grants for Hailey's work: http://english.usu.edu/Document/index.asp?Parent=632:

"David E. Hailey, Jr.
Associate Professor of Professional and Technical Communication
Director -- Interactive Media Research Labs
Web site: http://imrl.usu.edu/index.htm"


"$34,000 Second Sandia National Laboratories Research Grant; the second of three scheduled projects designed to research and develop techniques for capturing and preserving critical nuclear weapons-based processes. These processes are in danger of being lost as the specialists utilizing the relevant information retire, die, or move to new jobs. (Sole proposal author; project was co-developed with Christine Hailey.)"


"$27,000 Sandia National Laboratories Research Grant; the first of three scheduled projects to create a multimedia archive for a nuclear weapons assembly process. Project involves converting 9 video tapes into MPEG format and consolidating these with sound, text and images into a module that can be used as a step-by-step assembly guide."


$27 large to copy 9 videota... (Below threshold)
Captain Ned:

$27 large to copy 9 videotapes to MPEG and make sure that all of the print docs end up on the same cd as the video files?

$34 large to ask incipient retirees: "Hey, if I put tab A in slot B, will there be an Earth-shattering ka-boom"?

No wonder talentless hacks end up in the academy. Us honest people would have done this in our spare time at work.

Too Funny all - esp Old Coo... (Below threshold)

Too Funny all - esp Old Coot. Paul, look in the mirror, pinch yourself and say "I am Paul." over and over. You exist, babe.


I have tons and I mean tons... (Below threshold)

I have tons and I mean tons of llama pellets to throw instead of dung if you want. :-)


Cindy,Ohhh! An ac... (Below threshold)


Ohhh! An actual excuse to build the trebuchet I've got planned out...

Since this is all a DRAFT, ... (Below threshold)

Since this is all a DRAFT, I'm assuming that everything is flexible here. Otherwise, I think I would be experiencing real fear right about now: the "Professor" seems too creepy for even my imagination.

Other than that, I am mystified by the entire plot. It IS a plot, right?


Long time reader, first tim... (Below threshold)

Long time reader, first time commenter here... been following this story for months.

I have a question... what the hell is an organic document?? Is that the like the rotten, worm-infested, bruised fruit that cost 4x more than normal fruit, but is supposed to be much better for me to ingest?

Just wondering.

RebeccaThe profess... (Below threshold)


The professor is calling it "organic" to imply that it is a living documents. ie one that is constantly changing..

In other words... One you can't ever disagree with because if you disagree with something (or catch him forging evidence) he has the right to change it.

See also my "draft" crack above.

Don't forget mystical magic... (Below threshold)

Don't forget mystical magic users.

I don't know why you thought that was so hard. You actually had me laughing out loud at that one. Ahhhh... the logic (or lack thereof) of the man is astounding.






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