Harvard Business School professor bullies Chinese restaurant

There is a form of derangement to which professors at highly competitive elite institutions are vulnerable. Jonathan Gruber of MIT (Economics PhD, Harvard) is much in the public eye right now, but Ben Edelman of Harvard Business School (Economics PhD, Harvard, along with a Harvard Law School diploma and a masters in statistics) is beginning to join him in the ranks of infamously arrogant.

Hillary Sargent of Boston Magazine gained access to an email exchange between Professor Edelman and a Chinese restaurant, which he believes overcharged him, based on the prices in their menu that was part of their website.

Last week, Edelman ordered what he thought was $53.35 worth of Chinese food from Sichuan Garden’s Brookline Village location.

Edelman soon came to the horrifying realization that he had been overcharged. By a total of $4.

Short version: the restaurant forgot to update its website with new prices (in case you haven’t noticed, beef prices have skyrocketed recently), and the professor, not satisfied with an offer of a refund, is threatens legal action multiple times.

The entire thread is worth reading and can be found here.

It should be noted that Professor Edelman’s academic specialty includes:

critiquing online "safety" certifications that fail to adequately protect users, flagging numerousdeceptive advertising practices, and documenting airlines' false statements about "tax."

The good professor has lost all sense of perspective. I seriously doubt he has ever talked with a restaurant owner about the challenges of keeping the doors open. He appears to live in a world of theory, uncomplicated by actual human beings.

Jonah Goldberg provides a great summary of what we can take away from this:

Getting your refund: $4.

Looking like a total shmuck to the whole world: Priceless.

Some readers may remember that I was formerly a professor at the very same Harvard Business School. I will refrain for the moment (at least) in generalizing about faculty there, other than to note they varied a great deal in their humanity, but all were smart, competitive, and full of energy.

 

 

There is a form of derangement to which professors at highly competitive elite institutions are vulnerable. Jonathan Gruber of MIT (Economics PhD, Harvard) is much in the public eye right now, but Ben Edelman of Harvard Business School (Economics PhD, Harvard, along with a Harvard Law School diploma and a masters in statistics) is beginning to join him in the ranks of infamously arrogant.

Hillary Sargent of Boston Magazine gained access to an email exchange between Professor Edelman and a Chinese restaurant, which he believes overcharged him, based on the prices in their menu that was part of their website.

Last week, Edelman ordered what he thought was $53.35 worth of Chinese food from Sichuan Garden’s Brookline Village location.

Edelman soon came to the horrifying realization that he had been overcharged. By a total of $4.

Short version: the restaurant forgot to update its website with new prices (in case you haven’t noticed, beef prices have skyrocketed recently), and the professor, not satisfied with an offer of a refund, is threatens legal action multiple times.

The entire thread is worth reading and can be found here.

It should be noted that Professor Edelman’s academic specialty includes:

critiquing online "safety" certifications that fail to adequately protect users, flagging numerousdeceptive advertising practices, and documenting airlines' false statements about "tax."

The good professor has lost all sense of perspective. I seriously doubt he has ever talked with a restaurant owner about the challenges of keeping the doors open. He appears to live in a world of theory, uncomplicated by actual human beings.

Jonah Goldberg provides a great summary of what we can take away from this:

Getting your refund: $4.

Looking like a total shmuck to the whole world: Priceless.

Some readers may remember that I was formerly a professor at the very same Harvard Business School. I will refrain for the moment (at least) in generalizing about faculty there, other than to note they varied a great deal in their humanity, but all were smart, competitive, and full of energy.