Court Rules Substance Can't Publish Whole Test: Schmidt Responds
George Schmidt, publisher and editor of Substance, fought a hard fight. There were victories. Chicago's disreputable test, CASE, was abolished.
(i.e., those of us who don't have the money-- like government and corporations do--to pursue expensive and complex cases such as this for cynical judges like himself to split hairs over;
Ironically, Posner (like many other reactionaries) poses as a conservative. If you follow the logic of his decisions and writings, however, they have all served those economic interests currently riding roughshod over individual rights.
He also won't debate either his own opinions or their implications in public.
In court, he seeks absolute control, which he is usually given not only because lawyers by the time their cases get before someone like him are cravenly subservient to those in the black robes, but because he demands it by demeaning everyone in front of him, using sarcasm, cynicism, and the kinds of illogical logic that you can read in his decision.
The sheer intellectual dishonesty of his work (and this is just one example) would be challenged if more people scrutinized the opinions of the nation's top judges, but since the main people who follows such things are lawyers who might have to argue in front of guys like Posner, their high hobby horses are
rarely even noted as such. Lawyers cringe before the guy. The result is that he can ignore virtually all of the First Amendment Law regarding individual rights and the rights of newspapers we put before him on this case. It's all in our arguments and in the amicus briefs, especially the brief by the Chicago Teachers Union; all on the court website at uscourts.gov seventh circuit, then case
He wipes out the First Amendment even where it's relevant, viciously distorts both the facts and the law of the case because he is beyond criticism himself, and gets away with it because most people can't afford to get as far as we
got, let alone go the next step and take the whole thing to the U.S. Supreme Court. Then he creates a First Amendment "right" for the Chicago Board of Education!
Here's an account in the Chicago Tribune.
Paper cannot publish whole test, court rules
Ana Beatriz Cholo
January 1, 2004
In a case that has been monitored as a freedom of speech issue, the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Wednesday that a newspaper cannot publish the entire contents of a standardized test.
The Chicago Board of Education sought more than $1.3 million in 1999 from George Schmidt, editor of an investigative publication called Substance. Schmidt, a teacher, had published six versions of a standardized test called the Chicago Academic Standards Exams.
Schmidt was suspended without pay and subsequently fired from his teaching position. The tests are no longer administered in the Chicago schools.
A little over a year ago, Schmidt was convicted of violating state and federal copyright laws. School district officials offered Schmidt a chance to settle the case if he publicly acknowledged wrongdoing. Both parties also agreed to a settlement of $500. Schmidt still chose to appeal.
The former Bowen High School teacher expressed disappointment with the appellate decision.
"The court didn't realize more completely the necessity of public criticism of so-called standardized tests and ... that these tests have to be criticized once administered in their entirety and not just cherry-picked for their most ridiculous questions," Schmidt said Wednesday.
Schmidt said an appeal may be too costly. Already, he said, he has spent more than $200,000 in legal fees.
FAIR USE NOTICE
This site contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of education issues vital to a democracy. We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information click here. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use', you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.