Monday, July 14, 2008

Professor Barrow Wasting UMASS Resources

Who thinks a known casino supporter should be using university funds to pay for polls of his pet projects, especially when its something the private sector would likely fund anyway. That's exactly what Clyde Barrow did in his recent poll of New Bedford citizens, to test whether they'd want a casino in the city. Now, no one should question the importance of university professors researching their own interests when there's some kind of academic or scientific merit, or little purpose for the private sector to get involved - but it's been made obvious again and again that Clyde Barrow an unbiased observer when it comes to casinos in Massachusetts. Hence, his deep connections to the industry in the past. Most professors study things with an open mind, just trying to learn information before coming up with any serious conclusions. Clyde Barrow's more akin to the guy who knew the answer before the question, rarely ever considering any facts beyond how much money he thinks Massachusetts could make, using science others consider flawed to come up with those numbers in the first place.

Seriously, though, where's the Scientific Method? Was the fact that casinos are Bay State bliss ever in doubt with Mr. Barrow? There would actually be no problem with that - if got his own little think tank and did his 'research' (you know, counting license plates) funded by the industry instead of the university, or even if he disclosed his conflicts of interest and appearances of such.

The bottom line: Barrow's doing no favors to the University, the city of New Bedford or the Commonwealth. There are plenty of other, much better uses for the resources of UMASS Dartmouth than propping up the casino industry, especially when there's almost no chance in hell of a casino opening in New Bedford, whether or not Massachusetts legalizes Class 3 gambling. Furthermore, university resources should fund projects that the private sector has little incentive to be involved in, or at least something that benefits the public health, not studies that the private sector is very capable of funding itself.

Wouldn't it be a much better use of university resources to study the effects of the black market (drugs) on New Bedford, an international leader in offloading heroin? Or, how about studying why the city suffers from some of the worst drop out rates in the state? Not important enough for UMASS? What about studying why family median income lags so far behind the rest of the state in New Bedford, even many of the other struggling cities across Massachusetts? Nah - not important enough. Clearly, we need to be doing the casino lobby's work for them! Now that's important!


Anonymous said...

Let's stop refering to him as an expert, he says the same things over and over again. Shouldn't an expert keep up with the times? If he were truly an expert on casiNO's he'd of figured out that casino intrests have been , and still are, losing the battle. Here's an expert opinion:Tell people the truth about the revenue(stagnant) and tell them the truth about impacts (crime,addiction,etc.) that will cost taxpayers millions. Tell everyone that in order to cover the truth, you, Mr.Barrow must keep lying.

nancy said...

Clyde has an agenda to confirm his mindset. Don't question Clyde's agenda. Question how he continues to create bogus reports to substantiate his agenda. That's the educational component of Clyde's phoney manipulation to create stats that validate his convictions. Let's just use this as a eye opener about the prostitution of professional credentials.

Bellicose Bumpkin said...

One thing that strikes me about Barrow's research is the blatant one-sidedness of it. There is always a glowing accounting of the financial and job benefits but never an accounting of the costs.

For instance, taxes lost from existing business that is displaced by an Indian casino, net job numbers counting the substitution effect, social costs of compulsive gambling, regulatory costs and so forth.

Very shallow research indeed.

Ryan Adams said...

It's not "shallow research," it's called lobbying from within the system. Barrow's not in the business of doing real research, following the scientific method, etc. He's in the business of finding the tiny pieces of information that help his cause, howsoever he can come up with them (counting license plates, gaming the poll questions, etc.), then preaching as if he's an honest, simple Professor. Ya, right.

Anonymous said...

Don't forget, too, that in 2006 Barrow was arrested on assault and drug charges.

According to the Fall River Herald News: "the alleged victim told police she and Barrow were drinking alcohol when they began a verbal argument that quickly became violent. She said Barrow knocked her to the floor and began striking her. 'He was hitting me while on the floor before he started to choke me,' the woman told police.... The woman was treated for minor facial injuries at St. Anne's Hospital, the police report states.... When asked about the injuries the woman sustained, Barrow allegedly told police, 'She falls down all the time.'..."


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