"...When He [Jesus] saw the crowds, he had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd." Matt 9:36

"Do not rob the poor, because he is poor... for the Lord will take up their case and plunder those who plunder them." Proverbs 22:22-23

Monday, August 9, 2010

HP CEO Resigns: Too Bad We Expect More Integrity of CEO's than Our Baptist Leaders

It is now official: CEO's are held to a much, much higher ethical standard than that of Baptist seminary presidents.

Last week it was reported that Mark Hurd, the CEO of technology giant Hewlett Packard (HP), was recently investigated by his board of directors after they received a complaint against him of sexual harrassment.

While the investigation revealed Hurd had not violated any company sexual harassment policies, it did uncover the allegation that Hurd submitted numerous false expense reports in an attempt to cover his relationship with a female contractor.

And he resigned. He is gone. GAWN!

Let's consider the stark contrasts between how HP and Mark Hurd handled their scandal, and how Liberty University and Ergun Caner handled theirs:

1. HP didn't wait for the press to be involved: HP received a credible complaint from a female of sexual harrassment against Hurd. Unlike Liberty, they apparently chose not to dismiss it as long as they could, instead, they acted on the allegation in a timely fashion. Liberty was content on not doing ANYTHING, unless their hand was forced by the secular media. After all, Caner is "God's man", and there's that "touch not God's anointed" verse in the bible.

2. HP didn't consider the religion of the accuser in assessing credibility: Unlike Caner's most ardent defenders, HP didn't attack this woman and call her a liar because of her religion or her theological viewpoints. They didn't accuse her of trying to destroy "God's man". Caner and the band of pastors who have defended him dismissed the allegations against Caner because they came from a "Muslim" and from a "Calvinist", and in their warped world, all words spoken by Muslims are lies, and Calvinist Christian brothers can't be trusted.

3. HP conducted an internal investigation, and clearly reported the results to all who had an interest. HP did an investigation, and then issued a very clear statement as to what they did find, and what they didn't find, and the reasons of their ensuing action concerning Hurd. They knew this was their ethical obligation, to be truthful to those who have an interest in the future of HP. Liberty, on the other hand, was as vague as they possibly could be with their investigation results, not telling anyone what they found in any substantive fashion, leaving room for multiple interpretations of their actions that just fueled more controversy - which in the end is harming their university even more.

4. HP stated what Hurd did wrong, and cleared him for that which they believe he did not do. They did not leave their findings up to interpretation. HP said they found he did not violate the company's sexual harrassment policy, but that they uncovered numerous false expense reports used to hide his relationship with the woman, who was an HP contractor. Liberty on the other hand, in their statement did not address the decade long string of lies told by Caner to thousands of Christians over 8 1/2 years. They did address one specific issue which really was NOT one of the major complaints - whether Caner was or was not a Muslim at one time. On the more serious issues they kept their silence.

5. HP actually held their leader to their established standards of conduct. As stated in their press release, HP found that Hurd did not violate the sexual harrassment policy, but did violate the "HP Standards of Business Conduct" (click here to read them - it is a pdf file) that all HP employees must abide by. What a contrast to Liberty; as pointed out by Wade Burleson here, Liberty has clearly established policies of honesty and truthfulness applying to students and staff alike - that if fairly applied to Caner's conduct, it is hard to imagine that he would not have been found guilty of violating many of those standards. At Liberty, apparently your average run-of-the-mill professor and student are held to a much higher ethical standard than the president of the seminary. How sad is that?

6. Mark Herd gave a written statement, and he stepped down for the good of the organization: OK, maybe that is a stretch - he is getting a golden parachute of millions of dollars, but Herd did give a clear statement of admission of wrong-doing. He didn't address specifics of his sins, but did admit he didn't live up to the ethical standards expected of him. How refreshing, an admission of guilt. Caner, on the other hand refuses to say anything at all. Zippo. Herd's statement included the following:
“As the investigation progressed, I realized there were instances in which I did not live up to the standards and principles of trust, respect and integrity that I have espoused at HP and which have guided me throughout my career. After a number of discussions with members of the board, I will move aside and the board will search for new leadership. This is a painful decision for me to make after five years at HP, but I believe it would be difficult for me to continue as an effective leader at HP and I believe this is the only decision the board and I could make at this time."
7. Herd and his friends are not speaking and blogging about his "haters" trying to bring him down. And his friends are not attacking the woman who made the allegations because of her Calvinistic religious view points. Herd and his friends are not trying to shift the focus from his own actions, to the motives or religious viewpoints of his accuser. Apparently Herd doesn't hang out with blogging wannabe megachurch pastors like those who vigorously defend Caner. Good for him, he selects his friends well.

8. HP did not put the success and talents of their leader above the integrity of their company. OK, maybe they wanted to get rid of Herd anyways, who knows. But do any research on Mark Herd, and you'll see he was a wildly successful CEO of HP by almost any measure. He had the company on the right track: stock was up. sales were increasing even in this brutal economy. But the board apparently knows that the truthfulness and integrity of the leader is most important than these. Liberty did can Caner from the president's position (or maybe not, according to his defenders!), but one wonders if their slowness to respond and reluctance to take firm action is based on Caner's wild popularity and what his dismissal might do to their enrollment.

9. Finally, a Prediction: I'll go out on a limb and predict one of Herd's friends won't start a website devoted to telling us of Herd's integrity, attacking Herd's critics' religion, and soliciting input from other CEO's. Yes, Caner's friend Stormin' Norman Geisler has put up a site to try to defend Caner from the "false and defaming allegations" made against his friend that led to Caner losing his presidency at LBTS. Geisler and others continue to defend Caner by attacking the "Muslim" and "extreme Calvinists" behind the conspiracy to bring down Caner. That, my friends, is life in Baptist la-la land.

So there you have it: when you compare the ethical standards Baptist have for their seminary presidents to that of CEO's, it is not hard to see why there are so many blogs in Southern Baptist as compared to other denominations. There is no mechanism by which misbehaving ordained ministers are held accountable. Blogs will continue to fill that void.

And when you take a step back and look at this - is it any wonder Baptist leaders refuse to take any steps toward tracking the sexual predators in their midst? The free-wheeling, good-ole-boy, no accountability and no transparency culture of the SBC makes that completely out of the question.

But let's hope the SBC and its pastors can learn something from corporate American other than how to market their brand name. Thank you Jesus for our corporate boards that are showing the way of integrity and transparency as an example to our Baptist leaders. Amen.

46 comments:

New BBC Open Forum said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
New BBC Open Forum said...

Edited because I do know how to spell:

I read this story in the news this morning and sent it to you... before I saw your blog. My sentiments echo yours. All I'd add is I think the title, although it expresses the same idea, might make even more impact if it said "Too Bad We Expect LESS Integrity from Baptist Seminary Presidents than from Corporate CEOs."

I guess we get what we expect.

Thy Peace said...

NYT > Times Topics > Hewlett-Packard Company

NYT > Boss’s Stumble May Also Trip Hewlett-Packard

NYT > H.P. Ousts Chief for Hiding Payments to Friend

Mr. Hurd, who was in the midst of contract negotiations with the board, did not file his own expenses, this person said. H.P.’s board and Mr. Hurd had, over the past month, been negotiating a new contract that would have had him earning $100 million over the next three years, according to a person briefed on the meetings.

Here is a person who was at the zenith of his career and his company was functioning very well. But he stepped down due to his infractions, and A person briefed on this situation said Mr. Hurd had described the situation as “surreal and bizarre.” And what were the infractions ? ...

Mark V. Hurd, who turned Hewlett-Packard into the world’s largest technology company on the back of fierce fiscal discipline, has been ousted from his post for the lowliest of corporate offenses — fudging his expenses.

Why can't Christians pastors and seminary presidents do the same? For Christians this pain is much easier to bear, for there is a process of Confession, Repentance and Restoration. For in the secular business world, you are terminated from your position and one has to rebuild their career in other places of employment.

I find it hard to believe that Ergun Caner who did LOT WORSE than Mark Hurd, was still blaming his fellow Christians who were attempting to bring him to a Confession as "haters, hiders and non-Christians" as late as in May of this year.

Mark | hereiblog said...

Tom,

As far as Geisler is concerned, I wrote Norman Geisler: Context, Application and Defense to point out just how careful Geisler was in one of his books in showing how Jehovah's Witnesses were wrong. Of course, they are theologically wrong, but who should be held to the higher standard?

Christiane said...

The 'comparisons' of the behavior of HP to Liberty are very telling, and right on the mark for those of us who have followed and commented on the Caner story on blogs.

Liberty University has an opportunity now to take a good look at the 'process' they followed,
and to 'reform' its practice to the integrity of the Gospel it says it serves.

If it does that, it will proudly let us know.

If it cannot or will not do this, then its credibility as an institution with NORMAL integrity is 'challenged';
and its credibility as a Christian institution is damaged profoundly.

Perhaps Liberty is, after all, just a political organization 'at the top';
but a lot of parents and students are looking for Christian leadership: a leadership that is now visibly exposed as in need of reflection and renewal.

New BBC Open Forum said...

Liberty University has an opportunity now to take a good look at the 'process' they followed, and to 'reform' its practice to the integrity of the Gospel it says it serves.

I'd be happy just to see LU "reform" its practice to the level of integrity that HP has exhibited in this matter.

Anonymous said...

The difference is that churches do not operate under the same laws as business. Churches get a pass on almost all labor laws. They can pretty much do what they want...even sexual harassment. The individual can be responsble but not the church.

As to transparancy with financials, stockholders demand it and the IRS demands it.

That is why folks need to be forewarned before they go to work for a church organization. They tend to sanctify sin in the Name of Jesus. And no one should be a part of that. You will answer for supporting it.

Anonymous said...

I suppose there is a real difference in company policy between a corp. for profit and a corp. that is non-profit. The profit corportations have a much larger exposure than some little non profit organization and they make certain it is taken care of swiftly and properly.

Anonymous said...

Man, what an embarrassment for Baptists.

How hypocritical is it to preach against the sins of society when secular businesses have more integrity than churches and seminaries do?

Baptists have no one to blame but themselves for declining numbers.

Anonymous said...

So Caner sexually harassed somebody at Liberty? Did I miss something?

Anonymous said...

"So Caner sexually harassed somebody at Liberty? Did I miss something?"

Yes, you apparently missed reading the story. Herd was NOT found guilty of sexual harassment. But when they investigated the charge they found out that he had not been DISHONEST in his dealings with the company.

Read past the headline and you will discover the similarities.

New BBC Open Forum said...

"So Caner sexually harassed somebody at Liberty? Did I miss something?"

Apparently you did. Hurd was NOT found guilty of sexual harrassment. I'm not even sure the report about him being accused of sexual harrassment is accurate as the woman in question stated that there was no harrassment. Maybe there was a second woman. Who knows?

To my knowledge Caner hasn't been accused of sexual harrassment either.

Caner was found guilty of making "factual statements that are self-contradictory." (That's lying for you BI types and those in Loma Linda.) Hurd was found guilty of falsifying expense reports. That's also lying as well as stealing. One could make the argument that Caner's lies led to him stealing as well by his accepting money from the audiences he lied to over the past 9 years, not to mention all the book sales generated by his lies.

Watchdog's story contrasts the way each man's situation was handled by the man and his employer.

New BBC Open Forum said...

This version may also shed a little more light.

Can you imagine how different things would have been had Caner immediately issued the same statement as Hurd before any "investigation" by LU was required and immediately stepped down, apologized, and repented? Sadly, I don't think his huge ego would allow him to do this.

Anonymous said...

"To my knowledge Caner hasn't been accused of sexual harrassment either."

---------------------

Naw, he just believes their place is behind the pulpit so they can vacuum back there.

Debbie Kaufman said...

And he resigned. He is gone. GAWN!

And this line still cracks me up. Haha

Yes, those who preach against the world being so evil needs to take note that they are also most times the most honest, the most with integrity. What does that say when people who do not know Christ have more integrity than those who claim they do?

Thy Peace said...

Here is one friend of Mark Hurd who has spoken against his resignation.

NYT > Oracle Chief Faults H.P. Board for Forcing Hurd Out

“The H.P. board just made the worst personnel decision since the idiots on the Apple board fired Steve Jobs many years ago,” Mr. Ellison wrote. “That decision nearly destroyed Apple and would have if Steve hadn’t come back and saved them.”

Thy Peace said...

Some more mixed feedback on this story ... praise and criticism

NYT > Hewlett Took a P.R. Firm’s Advice in the Hurd Case

Big Daddy Weave said...

Not positive, but Hurd may very well be a Baptist.

He's a Baylor alum and his success at HP has been touted at Baylor for a number of years now in BU publications, alumni magazines, etc.

Dr Ergun Caner said...

Watchdog and friends- After about 3 1/2 months and almost 9,800 views, I have taken down the Ergun Caner parody videos. Thank you for your support, and more importantly for demanding truth, particularly inside the walls of the church.

I want to admonish you all to examine your eyes for planks, lest you become like that which you are calling to repentance. The Ergun Caner scandal demonstrated that some of our failings as a church run pretty deep. May our good, sovereign, and holy God grant our churches and our nation repentance and reformation.

Feel free to leave a comment on my channel page in the next day or two. Then I will be closing it down. Semper Reformanda.

FBC Jax Watchdog said...

"DrErgunCaner": I did notice several days ago the videos were taken down. Can you share with us what led to your decision to remove the videos?

FBC Jax Watchdog said...

The DrErgunCaner YouTube videos are gone....GAWN!!

Anonymous said...

"I want to admonish you all to examine your eyes for planks, lest you become like that which you are calling to repentance."


You're kidding right!!!????

you make me sick! what a horrible witness you are! you need to go deal with your issues before you ever get into any ministry position. Liberty is a diploma mill for all I am concerned. Christianity does NOT need you.

FBC Jax Watchdog said...

Anon: The person posting here is the FAKE Dr. Ergun Caner, who produced the parody videos of Caner on YouTube.

www.youtube.com/drerguncaner

Anonymous said...

Sad when the corporate world shows more integrity than Our religious world.

Anonymous said...

When I showed the Heb 13 verses you never dealt with them you just went off on your tirade about Ted Haggard and Matt Baker. Your understanding of leadership and authority is somewhat warped.

August 10, 2010 10:18 AM


Ok, here you go. I thought I said that the translators were laboring under a "divine" king in a state church mentality. It is always best to study the Greek:

A friend of mine wrote a 4 part series that includes an exegesis of your proof text for "obeying" leaders.

This is a link to part 1. The next 3 parts are on the right side bar.

http://coffeetradernews.blogspot.com/2007/02/elders-rulers-or-servants-part-1.html

This was developed by a woman and you might be offended that she was doing this instead of "managing" the home. Or you might think it is sinful for a man to learn from a woman. Or, you might just be reading with a filter on since it was developed by a woman.

Anonymous said...

According to Liberty Student News, Ergun Caner is vacating his office and leaving campus. (or maybe changing offices)

http://www.libertystudentnews.com/


(I wonder if he's going to be an LU Online professor for the next year and won't need an office.)

Thy Peace said...

It appears on one hand Ergun Caner is attempting to rebuild his reputation by links in both blogs and news for google searches. On the other hand he might be leaving LU.

Liberty Student News (Independent News of Liberty University) > Caner cleans out office and leaves school?.

Thanks to Anon @ 2:25pm.

Anonymous said...

Hey Fake or not, I stand on what I said. What a total embarrasment Ergun Caner is. AT BEST!

John Wylie said...

First of all you put your comment on the wrong blog. Second of all I said nothing about obeying anybody, once again it was your response to the scriptures. My intent with those passages was to demonstrate that elders are leaders, that was all I was trying to say. Also the managing the home quote I got from the scripture you posted. Do you believe that the Bible says what it means? You've tried to paint me as a dictator and a sexist and all I've done is post the scriptures. Your assumptions come from what you think I think those scriptures mean.

You simply dimiss any scripture that doesn't suit your views. Everyone knows that elders are leaders in the church and husbands are leaders in the family. The Bible is clear on this. There is a thing called servant leadership, it was demonstrated by Christ, and He commands husbands to do the same. (Ephesians 5:24-29) "Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit in everything to their husbands. Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish. In the same way husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ does the church," ESV


Still waiting for my answer on 1 Tim. 5:18.

Anonymous said...

Thy Peace,

I honestly don't think Caner has anything to do with those ridiculous articles that come up on Google search. They are very obviously articles that were originally in English, translated to another language and then back to make them sound ridiculous. I am sure Ergun Caner knows how to correctly do PR if he wants to. I think someone did that to him.

John Wylie said...

Hey Anon 2:19 pm,

I read your friends articles and I thought they were great. In it they repeatedly call elders and husbands "leaders". I agree with them that elders are not dictators or despots but servant leaders. There are some things I disagree with in their articles but at least they presented everything in a scholarly and respectful way.

Thanks for the links.

Debbie Kaufman said...

Anonymous: This is not a ridiculous article. ThyPeace is very good at research. Click on the link and read.

Bennett Willis said...

http://www.thepetitionsite.com/1/operation-restore-dr-caner/

Just in case someone is looking for the petition on EC--the old link does not seem to work. They are up to about 13 signatures that they are willing to let you see.

Anonymous said...

Debbie...I am talking about those articles supposedly written by Caner showing up in Google search that say ridiculous things in awful English. I may not like Caner,but I think it's wrong to say that he is putting up these articles. There's no way he'd put up something that says about Honor Killings "These killings of women are a grave and austere corruption of International Animal Rights Law"

http://www.articlesbase.com/online-business-articles/stop-honor-killing-ergun-caner-2997375.html

Anonymous said...

Just in case someone is looking for the petition on EC--the old link does not seem to work. They are up to about 13 signatures that they are willing to let you see.

Here are two you won't see for long...

#34 15:42, Aug 10, Worthless Blogger, VA

For the low fee of $50 per recited sinners prayer, Ergun Caner came to my church. When he left, we wished we didn't agree to pay by the decision with 45 people responding to the altar call. You cannot put a price on a soul, so it was worth it, we will do whatever it takes to make God save more.

#33 03:10, Aug 10, DeMarcus Sullivan, VA

Ergun Caner is the biggest fake I have ever met. this petition idea of mine was really stupid. Just ignore the worthless thing.

Thy Peace said...

Anon @7:57pm: You have a good point here. I do not think Ergun Caner would have authored those posts. At least I find it hard to believe he would write that badly.

Dr Ergun Caner said...

Regarding my decision to remove the videos: First, there were no legal issues, no threats, no juicy details whatsoever. (It almost seems appropriate to embellish here, but nah..) I did not remove them due to any outside pressure.

I am of the opinion that Ergun Caner can no longer "shut out" the "haters". That is, I don't think he'll be able to continue spreading the same lies in the future now that they have been brought into the light. I personally think he has been let go at LU, and that report from libertystudennews.com just today seems to indicate that. I think this is now more about how our Christian leaders and churches handle sin rather than about just one man's lies.

Also, I didn't like how Youtube/Google was indexing my parody videos as "related videos" next to non-related videos that I didn't want associated with the parody videos. I like Google and all, but sometimes they are too smart for their own good :-) So, as I wrote on my Youtube Channel, I feel like I had my say, and put the truth out there for all those willing to see it.

Anonymous said...

John, see last thread

Anonymous said...

Re: Mark Hurd
News in the corporate world, stock market, world of commerce.

Re: Ergun Caner
A news sliver in the LU & SBC world. No. One. Cares.

Anonymous said...

Norm Geisler at Bellevue Baptist, currently live

http://mediasuite.316networks.com/playerlive.php?s=ow8iz1y0&doResize=true

Johnny D. said...

No surprise here. I imagine Pilate ("What is truth?) would make a great mega-church pastor.

Anonymous said...

Local Lynchburg paper confirms Ergun Caner still on faculty.

http://www2.newsadvance.com/news/2010/aug/12/caner-remains-faculty-lu-ar-422882/

Anonymous said...

I'm the anonymous from Aug 10 at 2:25 pm.

I guessed right about him being an online professor. It's possible the office was specifically for the dean of the seminary so he had to move. And I might be wrong, but I think in the near future the whole seminary is moving over to the old Thomas Road Baptist Church campus anyways.

For the first time, the News and Advance did NOT turn off the comments on an article about Caner. So here is everyone's chance to post links to good video clips and articles on his lying. I can assure you the folks at LU DO read the News & Advance. There's already some snarky comments from the community there.

Lightwalker said...

This is what I thought would happen. He is "on faculty" but teaching online courses.

We will soon see if the other part of my prediction is correct. My guess is once they clean up the courses and they don't have to pay him for his intellectual property any longer his contract will "not be renewed".

Thy Peace said...

NYT > Real Reason for Ousting H.P.’s Chief

Thy Peace said...

NYT > Despite H.P.’s Efforts, Spectacle of a Chief Goes On