Poetry markets ticked upward yesterday on news that the Louisville Academic Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (aka the University Administrative Inquisition) has decided to overrule the organizers of the historic Louisville Lit Conference and ban Unpleasant People from attending. This ruling overturns the conference organizers’ decision to allow Barrett Watten to participate, in spite of a petition by very sensitive people easily triggered by unpleasantness to ban him.

PoMarkets hailed this historic move. Hugh Howard, a Po-broker at Eliot, Ransom, and Bernstein, called it significant. “It’s an important act by the Administrative Authority,” he stated. “It marks a significant—actually, I would call it decisive—move against the last remnants of that unruly and sometimes disruptive rump of University domesticated scholars and poets. Once our poets are thoroughly inventoried and the last of the rabble, including unpleasant people, has been contained, I expect to see a surge of corporate confidence in the PoMarket.”

The latest firestorm was sparked by a petition started by The Weak-Knee Coalition, complaining about Professor Barrett Watten. The Weak-Knee Coalition was started to protect very sensitive writers and scholars from any situation that might trigger their anxiety at unpleasant stuff. When news leaked out that Watten, who had been declared an official Unpleasant Person by his University, was invited to organize a panel at the Louisville Lit Conference, they immediately mobilized to ban him from the conference.

“They rub people the wrong way. They needs to be cancelled,” said Mack Carthy, a spokesperson for the Coalition. “We don’t think anybody who disagrees with us should be allowed to speak. Or even not speak. Or even just be around. It’s so offensive even to think about how unpleasant Barry Watten is that I am about to be triggered by it, so please stop asking questions or we’ll cancel you, too.”

Amy Queen, former Censorship Director for now-defunct Buffalo Poetics List and current Head of VIDA’s Office for Protecting Sensitive People from Poets with Difficult Personalities, spoke in support of the Administration’s decision to override the conference organizers. “This is a major victory for sensitive people everywhere,” said Queen. “We extend our thanks to the U of Louisville Department of Administrative Enforcement of Politeness and Protocol. This decision is not just about protecting sensitive poets and writers who feel uncomfortable having to view Mr. Watten at conferences, but will also make it much easier for VIDA and its allies to ban whoever they find offensive and unpleasant in the future. And anytime. Stay tuned.”

The coalition and its partners undertook various efforts to get the Conference organizing committee to ban Watten, including an online petition. When those failed, an anonymous Whistle Blower took matters into their own hands, went to very top, and prodded the Administration to intervene. An anonymous spokesperson for the University reaffirmed yesterday their commitment to eliminating unpleasantness from all University programs and facilities. “Students are very vulnerable,” an anonymous spokesperson for the Administration stated. “It is our responsibility as stand-in for their parents to see that they are not triggered by unpleasant people. Or unpleasant words. Or, heaven forbid, unpleasant ideas. If the faculty can’t do that, the Administration will.”

This move is seen as especially important given the recent downward trend in Poetry investment as Wall Street confidence wavered. Fearing that possible resistance eruptions such as occurred in the 1960s instigated by the New American Poetry 1945-1960 would disrupt the markets, lenders have been wary of continuing to infuse capital into the extensive system of prizes and awards that have been put in place since the 1980s to contain and baffle resistance That system, known as CRAP (Cap Resistance and Protest), has successfully diverted a significant amount of creative energy into filling out grant applications and reports and refocused poets and writers on the importance of winning prizes rather than engaging in irrelevant politics.

“Creative writers love CRAP,” Howard pointed out. “They eat it up. Occasionally some of the poets act up a bit. You know how crazy poetry is. But we have it under control now.” As another anonymous spokesperson for the Administration pointed out to wary investors, “We didn’t start all those Creative Writing programs to agitate writers and make them think about things. We started them because they make money. And they stop making money when they become unpleasant. That’s a non-starter.”