The Simon affair

Some highly reliable notes have been received on the Simon affair, paraphrased with as much accuracy as I can muster:

Simon, I am told, had a harsh style, an unpleasant way that was accommodated (institutionally) for a long time; a new administration at SIU was less accommodating, however.

Where Simon perceived rivalry, he tried to quash reputations. He made enemies. Some of his workers felt abused. He had a rough way and lapses in self-control.

In this firing case, the aggrieved combined with the new university leadership (open to making changes).

(To get a sense of the political background preceding the new regime at SIU is, see here.)

His friends made his recent situation worse than it needed to be.

If his friends continue to bear down too hard on his enemies it could trigger an outpouring that hurts Simon’s reputation further. Examples include this and this.

Chief Justice Williams of the RISC, as head of the Ulysses S. Grant Association, has been hitting the university hard but is himself under attack for the conduct of his judicial duties (see here and here).

John Marszalek will finish the Grant Papers - essentially publishing the last volume of already collected material.

In sum: This is fairly “typical academic politics, spiced with a vengeful overreaction and punishment” of obnoxious behavior.