Not Guilty

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This morning’s paper re-ignited my interest in the only family here in town caught up in the nationwide college admissions scandal. As many of you know, those nabbed in the scandal now fall into two camps: one of which is those, such as Felicity Huffman, who pled guilty, expressed contrition, and are awaiting their (reduced) punishment, and two, those like Lori Loughlin who have dug their 4″ heels in and are refusing to admit that half-million dollar bribes are perhaps not totally legit.

The folks here in Palo Alto are fairly small potatoes: the man is an oncologist (who faces the loss of his livelihood due to this mess) who allegedly paid $25,000 to have his apparently retarded son get an 1190 on the SAT by way of fraud. Here’s how the article begins:


What continues in the article is simply jaw-dropping: their lawyer asserts that it wasn’t a conspiracy because they didn’t know a bunch of other people were doing the same thing. He goes on to make some kind of utterly bizarre metaphor with a spoke and wheels.


The lawyer then virtually goes into the realm of Godwin’s Law when he warns of a “drift toward totalitarian institutions.” I gotta say, this snippet really pisses me off, because the guy is asserting the presence of a government entity which is actually trying to enforce a law or two is some kind of jack booted thug. I’m sure Dr. and Mrs. Colburn would have preferred the government to just mind its own damned business.


The piece de resistance is actually twofold: first, the targeted score (you could ask for a specific score) was a laughable 1190, and second, the Colburns argue that what they did wasn’t so terrible, because some people paid even BIGGER bribes than they did. In other words, if I pay $5,000 to someone to commit murder, that isn’t as bad as some other guy who paid $25,000 to commit murder.


And just in case you’re wondering how tough it is to get into the aforementioned institutions, here’s a taste:


In other words, if you can write your name in the ground with a stick, you’re in. (By way of contrast, at Stanford – – where a certain Knight begins in September through legitimate means – – the admit rate is about 4%).

Even if this scumbag lawyer gets his scumbag clients off the hook, I gotta tell ya, social media is not going to be kind to the man’s career, or whatever is left of it: