Thursday, September 21, 2017

Let’s Raise it More

GLENN MCCOY © Belleville News-Democrat. Dist. By UNIVERSAL UCLICK. Reprinted with permission. All rights reserved.

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Monday, September 18, 2017

College Students: Intolerant of Free Speech

From the (liberal) Brookings Institution, a national sample of college students on their attitudes toward free speech on campus.
College students’ views of the First Amendment are of profound importance for multiple reasons. First, colleges and universities are places where intellectual debate should flourish. That can only occur if campuses are places where viewpoint diversity is celebrated, and where the First Amendment is honored in practice and not only in theory. Second, what happens on campuses often foreshadows broader societal trends. Today’s college students are tomorrow’s attorneys, teachers, professors, policymakers, legislators, and judges. If, for example, a large fraction of college students believe, however incorrectly, that offensive speech is unprotected by the First Amendment, that view will inform the decisions they make as they move into positions of increasing authority later in their careers.
Clearly true.
To explore the critical issue of the First Amendment on college campuses, during the second half of August I conducted a national survey of 1,500 current undergraduate students at U.S. four-year colleges and universities. The survey population was geographically diverse, with respondents from 49 states and the District of Columbia.

The survey results establish with data what has been clear anecdotally to anyone who has been observing campus dynamics in recent years: Freedom of expression is deeply imperiled on U.S. campuses. In fact, despite protestations to the contrary (often with statements like “we fully support the First Amendment, but…), freedom of expression is clearly not, in practice, available on many campuses, including many public campuses that have First Amendment obligations.
How to the specifics:

First, a question asked:
Does the First Amendment protect “hate speech”?
Of course, the First Amendment does protect “hate speech,” even aside from the question of who has the right to decide what is “hate speech” which must be shut up. But less than half of college students believe that:


Another question asked:
A public university invites a very controversial speaker to an on-campus event. The speaker is known for making offensive and hurtful statements.

A student group opposed to the speaker disrupts the speech by loudly and repeatedly shouting so that the audience cannot hear the speaker. Do you agree or disagree that the student group’s actions are acceptable?


This tactic, quite simply, is fascist, yet a narrow majority of students agree it is acceptable.

Then, another question is asked about the “controversial speaker:”
A student group opposed to the speaker uses violence to prevent the speaker from speaking. Do you agree or disagree that the student group’s actions are acceptable?


It might seem nice that this is only a small minority, but as the author of the study notes, “Any number significantly above zero is concerning.” Indeed.

The survey asked one more question about a controversial speaker:
Consider an event, hosted at a public U.S. university by an on-campus organization, featuring a speaker known for making statements that many students consider to be offensive and hurtful. A student group opposed to the speaker issues a statement saying that, under the First Amendment, the on-campus organization hosting the event is legally required to ensure that the event includes not only the offensive speaker but also a speaker who presents an opposing view. What is your view on the student group’s statement?


While presenting alternative viewpoints is typically good, in practice the “controversial speaker” will always be the conservative one, and leftist speakers like communist Angela Davis (who spoke at Marquette) will be considered uncontroversial, and allowed to speak with no opposing viewpoint presented.

Further, this imposes on conservative groups the burden of booking at least two speakers for any event they wish to hold. To burden speech is to restrict speech.

How Does One View Education

Finally, students are given a choice between two educational philosophies:
If you had to choose one of the options below, which do you think it is more important for colleges to do?

Option 1: create a positive learning environment for all students by prohibiting certain speech or expression of viewpoints that are offensive or biased against certain groups of people

Option 2: create an open learning environment where students are exposed to all types of speech and viewpoints, even if it means allowing speech that is offensive or biased against certain groups of people?


Of course, one cannot discuss any serious issue without some viewpoints being considered “offensive” or “biased” by some group. Feminists are offended when anybody expresses opposition to abortion. A lot of blacks get “offended” by a discussion of out of wedlock births and dependency in the black community. Defending police against charges that they constantly gun down innocent blacks is offensive to the politically correct.

This notion gives politically correct groups a veto power over any ideas they dislike.

Conclusion

Of course, not every student who gives an intolerant answer will necessarily act intolerantly. Many are probably giving what they think is the “socially acceptable” answer. They wouldn’t shout down a speaker, and in fact wouldn’t care one way or the other that the speaker was on campus. But what does it mean that shutting up speech on a university campus is the socially acceptable response?

While the intolerance of many college faculties is well known, probably more attention needs to be paid to indoctrination in middle and high schools. How much is identity politics turning students into little social justice warriors who believe that “marginalized groups” have a right to be protected from any speech that offends their tender sensibilities.

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Saturday, September 16, 2017

Democrat’s Dream

GLENN MCCOY © Belleville News-Democrat. Dist. By UNIVERSAL UCLICK. Reprinted with permission. All rights reserved.

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Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Paris Climate Accords: Nations Failing to Meet Goals

From Nature:
All major industrialized countries are failing to meet the pledges they made to cut greenhouse-gas emissions, warn David G. Victor and colleagues.

Beyond US President Donald Trump's decision in June to withdraw the United States from the 2015 Paris climate agreement, a more profound challenge to the global climate pact is emerging. No major advanced industrialized country is on track to meet its pledges to control the greenhouse-gas emissions that cause climate change.

Wishful thinking and bravado are eclipsing reality. Countries in the European Union are struggling to increase energy efficiency and renewable power to the levels that they claimed they would. Japan promised cuts in emissions to match those of its peers, but meeting the goals will cost more than the country is willing to pay. Even without Trump's attempts to roll back federal climate policy, the United States is shifting its economy to clean energy too slowly.

The Paris agreement offered, in theory, to reboot climate diplomacy by giving countries the flexibility to set their own commitments. As of July 2017, 153 countries have ratified the agreement — 147 of which have submitted pledges to reduce emissions, also known as nationally determined contributions. The idea is that as each country implements its own pledge, others can learn what is feasible, and that collaborative global climate protection will emerge. That logic, however, threatens to unravel because national governments are making promises that they are unable to honour.
So Donald Trump is supposedly derelict in pulling out of the Paris Accords. Other, more enlighten nations, not only stayed in, but chided Trump for pulling out.

So we guess rhetoric is more important than reality. If you virtue signal frequently and loudly enough, people won’t notice that you aren’t doing what you promised.

But that’s generally true of environmentalism.

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Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Mainstream Protestant Denominations: Triggering Ideas Banned

Major news about Mainline Protestant Christianity, from the Babylon Bee:
LOUISVILLE, KY—While some college campuses have established safe spaces where the disenfranchised can avoid the pressures, biases, and judgement of the world, mainline Protestant denominations are taking it one step further. The entire umbrella group has now been designated a safe space for those who would otherwise be offended by the gospel, sources confirmed Wednesday.

Speaking on behalf of a plethora of denominations including the Presbyterian Church (USA), the Episcopal Church, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, and the United Methodist Church, a spokesperson issued the following statement: “We are in agreement that there is a great need for churches to rise up and create spaces that are safe for questioning and accepting our identities, doubts, fears, failures, and blatant sins. Effective immediately, we are declaring all mainline Protestant churches safe spaces, where there are no judgments, conviction, repentance, or gospel presentations whatsoever.”

The statement listed elements that safe space churches should remove from their premises, including “crosses, Bibles, pulpits, organs, hymnals, systematic theologies, and sermons exhibiting any form of triggering micro-aggression. Be considerate.” Words like “sin,” “hell,” “death,” “wrath,” “propitiation,” and “substitutionary atonement” are also on the ban list.

On behalf of all of mainline Protestantism, the spokesperson expressed heartfelt joy that they were able to make such a major step toward accepting—and not judging—anyone who may be on a path toward God’s judgment. “Our congregations are now spaces that are safe from the power of God in the gospel, where each person is free to construct their own narrative. That’s worthy of celebration.”
This, of course, is not a sudden shock, but rather the culmination of longstanding trends in these denominations.

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Monday, September 11, 2017

Evacuate!

Saturday, September 09, 2017

The Obama Legacy in Milwaukee Policing

From Heather Mac Donald in City Journal: a discussion of how Attorney General Jeff Sessions is trying to undo the anti-police policies of the Obama Administration. Mac Donald specifically discusses Milwaukee:
Attorney General Jeff Sessions has reoriented the [collaborative reform] program to help departments fight crime, rather than phantom police bias, without imposing a costly bureaucratic overlay. The changes come too late, however, for the Milwaukee Police Department, whose chief, Ed Flynn, was sweet-talked into collaborative reform by the former head of the COPS office. In 2016, Milwaukee’s collaborative-reform team produced a draft 243-page report, characterized by the usual Obama hallmarks—above all, a disparate-impact approach to finding police bias that measures police activity, like stops or arrests, against population ratios rather than against crime rates. The current DOJ lawyers agreed with Flynn that the draft report was seriously flawed and should not be released until its errors were corrected. But someone—whether an Obama aide, a member of the collaborative-reform team, or a Milwaukee police official—leaked the report to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel and to the city council. The Journal Sentinel, which has waged a crusade against Flynn for years, splashed its nearly 3,000-word article on its front page under the unintentionally hilarious headline: TRUST IN POLICE DAMAGED, REPORT SAYS: DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE DRAFT SAYS MILWAUKEE CHIEF RELIES TOO MUCH ON DATA. Accusing a police department of relying “too much on data” is like accusing a doctor of relying too much on evidence-based disease markers in his diagnoses. Another term for “data-driven” is “victim-driven,” since crime data simply record the incidence of criminal victimization. The Journal Sentinel followed up with another front-page piece the next day: 9 KEY TAKEAWAYS FROM THE DOJ DRAFT.

Predictably, the report criticizes traffic-stop rates, allegedly three times higher for blacks than for whites. The investigators concede that the department deploys its resources based on “data to identify neighborhoods of higher crime rates.” Race, in other words, has nothing to do with deployment or enforcement. But, the report goes on to explain, “community members have expressed concern that the areas identified as high crime are also more populated by minority community members. As a result, MPD’s data driven policing strategy has a disparate impact on minority community members.” This, in a nutshell, is the core dilemma facing police departments today. Given the huge disparities in law-breaking, the police cannot go to where people are most being victimized without generating racially disproportionate stop and arrest data. In 2016, blacks made up 89 percent of robbery suspects in Milwaukee, 85 percent of aggravated-assault suspects, and 81 percent of homicide suspects, though they are 39 percent of the population. Their victims were predominantly minority. The nonfatal shooting rate for blacks is over 15 times higher than for whites; the homicide rate is over 11 times higher than for whites. The only way to avoid generating racially disproportionate police activity data is to stop serving the minority victims of crime. No one has articulated this bind more eloquently over the years than Ed Flynn.

The dilemmas of policing in the Black Lives Matter era were put on vivid display this April, when Milwaukee’s city council voted to require the MPD to loosen its policy on car chases. The current MPD policy, instituted by Flynn, requires a high threshold of criminal behavior before officers can give chase; it represents the gold standard of “progressive” policing, because high-speed car chases are extremely dangerous. But the city council now wants officers to crack down on reckless driving because minority communities have complained about speeding, often by carjackers who zoom away after stealing cars. Nearly 90 percent of car-theft suspects are black, but the same municipal officials who routinely blame the MPD for high rates of black incarceration are now demanding that the department ramp up enforcement against the black population. “It’s more than a little baffling to me,” reports Flynn, “that the same city council that’s on the record as opposing putting people in jail for committing crimes wants us to engage in more pursuits that place innocent lives at risk to catch people they don’t want to see put in jail.”

The collaborative-reform draft cites MPD’s alleged failure to engage in community policing. In fact, Flynn has put so many officers on bikes to interact with the community that critics have accused him of letting patrol-car response times increase. The report also alleges that the department has a patrol workforce that does not “reflect the diversity of the Milwaukee community at large.” Like every other department in the country, Milwaukee tries to recruit as many minority candidates as possible. The Black Lives Matter narrative that policing is racist does not facilitate that effort; nor does the fact that minorities are more likely to have a criminal record and weaker test scores. It’s unlikely in any case that further racial engineering would improve policing: another Obama-era collaborative-reform report found that black and Hispanic officers in Philadelphia had a much higher rate than white officers of shooting unarmed black males. That disparity, which has been found elsewhere, undoubtedly derives from racial quotas in hiring.

As if the leaked report were not causing the MPD headaches enough, the Wisconsin ACLU is suing in federal court for a consent decree against stop, question, and frisk. The suit is based on the usual specious disparate impact analysis.
Law enforcement policy, better than almost anything else, shows how liberals are so attached to their narrative of black victimization at the hands of whites that they will harm black people to avoid admitting the flaws in that narrative.

Blacks are most certainly victims of crime, and they are by a vast disproportion more victimized than whites. But the idea that blacks are mostly victimized by other blacks is something that would create huge cognitive dissonance among liberals.

Liberals are, however, happy with the notion that black people are mostly the victims of white cops.  Thus we have a war on cops.  Which is also, de facto, a war on black people.

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Friday, September 08, 2017

The Next Puzzle

Thursday, September 07, 2017

Doctoral Thesis About . . . Well, You Figure it Out!

From New Real Peer Review, the abstract of a Ph.D. thesis:
Self-Storying to (De)Construct Compulsory Heterosexuality: A Feminist Poststructural Autoethnography of a Self-Wedding Ritual

Written from the perspective of a white-settler, obese, bisexual, middle class cisfemale graduate student in Canada, the wedding ritual and bride are explored as sites of ideal female/feminine formation of the subject. Compulsory heterosexuality is implicated. “Single” and “married,” like “woman,” are constituted in discourses. The author explores ways that she, as an unmarried and therefore “single” woman has been positioned as personally deficient as single-ness is produced as an illegitimate and undesirable position for female/feminine subjects to take up. This research uses an autoethnographic methodological frame augmented by feminist poststructural epistemology to open up, trouble, disrupt and interrupt the figuring of the bride in hopes of (re)signification and new practices of the female and feminine self for the writer. The writer privileges story in the forms of narrative, poetry, theatrical vignette and photography; theoretical literature provides context and a methodological framework and adds a supplemental layer of analysis. The story is told from various temporal positions including past, present, and future, blurring the idea of chronological age. Practices of self and the limits of agency and resistance to dominant discourses are explored. Many accounts of a feminist self-wedding are presented to illustrate the opportunities for resistance, disruption and deconstruction of sociohistoric subjects and discourse, in this case, the heterosexual bride.

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Wednesday, September 06, 2017

Black Lives Matter: Radical Hate Group

Liberals view Black Lives Matter as a benign organization, invited to the White House By Barack Obama and funded by major capitalist corporations.

But liberals have a long history of turning a blind eye to the real beliefs of extreme radical leftist organizations, and Black Lives Matter is no exception.

And it’s not as though Black Lives Matter tries to conceal their views. They advertise them right up front on their Twitter feed.

All of the following tweets have been taken from the national Black Lives Matter Twitter feed (@Blklivesmatter). Several appeared on the feeds of local BLM organizations and were retweeted by the national organization. Such retweeting, of course, constitutes an endorsement.

Hating Cops

Hating cops seems to be the bread and butter of BLM. For example, when violent leftists tried to disrupt a recent Free Speech Rally in Boston, the cops tried to protect the rally from the leftists. How did BLM Cambridge describe the situation? Fascists protecting fascists.

Lauding Cop Killers

If calling cops fascists isn’t bad enough, how about lauding cop killers? BLM has done precisely that, multiple times. First, there is a tweet glorifying Assata Shakur, who killed a cop in New Jersey, escaped prison, and fled to Castro’s Cuba, where she remains under the protection of the Communist regime.


Another Cop Killer

Mumia Abu-Jamal was, like Shakur, a black militant who murdered a cop. He killed Philadelphia cop  Daniel Faulkner in 1981, and while being carried to the hospital for wounds he had received in the shoot-out, said “I shot the mother fucker, and I hope the mother fucker dies.” Another witness testified to having heard Abu-Jamal declare, at the hospital: “I’m glad. If you let me go, I will kill all you cops.” A cause célèbre among leftists, there is really little doubt he murdered the cop.

He is cited, with obvious approval, by BLM Nashville in a tweet retweeted by the national organization.

Other Terrorists

Some terrorists are cop killers, and others kill innocent civilians.

One of the latter is Rasmea Odeh, a Palestinian terrorists who killed two people in a supermarket bombing in 1969 in Jerusalem. This, to Black Lives Matter makes her a hero.
With her (above) is Angela Davis who, like lots of the heroes of BLM, was involved in a murderous plot. According to Wikepedia:
On August 7, 1970, Jonathan Jackson, a heavily armed, 17-year-old African-American high-school student, gained control over a courtroom in Marin County, California. Once in the courtroom, Jackson armed the black defendants and took Judge Harold Haley, the prosecutor, and three female jurors as hostages. As Jackson transported the hostages and two black convicts away from the courtroom, the police began shooting at the vehicle. The judge and the three black men were killed in the melee; one of the jurors and the prosecutor were injured. The firearms which Jackson used in the attack, including the shotgun used to kill Judge Haley, had been purchased by Davis two days prior and the barrel of the shotgun had been sawn off. Davis was found to have been corresponding with one of the inmates involved.
In Boston, Black Lives Matter staged a “Meaning of Freedom” concert to honor Davis.

Another Terrorist

If black cop killers and Palestinian terrorists aren’t enough, how about a Puerto Rican terrorist? Yes, they have honored one of those too. The fellow in the top left photo below, beside Rasmea Odeh, is Oscar Lopez River. He was a leader in Fuerzas Armadas de Liberación Nacional (FALN), a group responsible for over 130 bombings in the U.S. between 1974 and 1983.

Condoning Violence

Given the clear implicit endorsement of violence by the choice of heroes of BLM, it’s no surprise to find the organization linking to an essay that is explicit in its approval of violence.

You can easily click through and read the whole thing, but the last paragraph sums it up:
And while it might make us uncomfortable to acknowledge, violence is often a necessary tool of resistance. The sooner we recognize that, the sooner we can end oppression.

Blaming a Cop Who Was Innocent

Given their seeming belief that blacks who get cross-ways with the police must always be innocent, it’s not surprising that BLM is still attached to the notion that Michael Brown, in Ferguson, Missouri, was the innocent victim of a police shooting.
Even the liberal mainstream media has abandoned this narrative, and the definitive report on the shooting (coming, of all places, from the Eric Holder Justice Department) showed the shooting to be justified. Brown, ordered by the cop to move out of the street, attacked the cop in his SUV, trying to take the cop’s gun, which discharged. When Brown was shot, he was charging head down at the cop.

Hate Group

We, of course, have already blogged about BLM’s laudatory essay on Fidel Castro.
Black Lives Matter is, quite simply, a hate group. They do not exist simply to protect innocent blacks from unjustified police shootings. They are leftist radicals claiming to be a civil rights group. A real black civil rights group would not laud cop killers. It would not celebrate Marxist dictators.

In reality, BLM is more in tune with white radicals than with rank and file black folks.  The latter do have some issues with the cops, but don’t celebrate cop killers, and often want cops around so that they can live their lives in peace.

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Tuesday, September 05, 2017

How a Benighted Conservative Was Turned into an Enlightened Liberal

Just in, this personal account:
ST. PAUL, MN—Explaining how the string of personal insults and sharply worded accusations caused him to reevaluate every one of his political leanings, former conservative Vincent Welsh recalled for reporters Friday the belittling tirade from a college student that brought him over to the left. “It was last October and I’d just mentioned my support for a Republican congressional candidate on Twitter when this 19-year-old responded by telling me I was an ignorant asshole who hated the poor and that I was everything that was wrong with the world, and it just completely opened my eyes to how incorrect my whole worldview was,” said Welsh, fondly recounting how the sophomore sociology major converted him to liberalism on the spot by calling him a hateful bigot and saying he was too much of a “brainwashed puppet” of corporate interests to know what was best for him, instantaneously invalidating the 56 years of individual thought and life experience that had led him to his previous political beliefs. “I remember how he said anyone who didn’t support Scandinavian-style social policies was nothing more than a greedy capitalist leech and I was just like, ‘Wow, yes, that makes total sense.’ And then when he called me a fascist piece of shit and condescendingly asked if I’d ever once looked up from my copy of Atlas Shrugged, that was the moment I saw what a complete fool I’d been and knew I had to reject all my political positions and adopt his ideology in total.” Welsh then expressed his deep gratitude that the young man had even stopped to direct the series of derogatory tweets at him in the first place, saying he would likely still be a “money-grubbing racist shithead who spends all day sucking the Koch brothers’ dicks” if not for the magnanimous individual.
Yes, we are sure this sort of consciousness raising calling into account of bad ideas has turned many people, especially conservative-leaning college students, into good progressives. After all, we found this in an eminent social science journal.

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Monday, September 04, 2017

More of the Same

GLENN MCCOY © Belleville News-Democrat. Dist. By UNIVERSAL UCLICK. Reprinted with permission. All rights reserved.

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Sunday, September 03, 2017

Blaming “Climate Change” for Hurricane Harvey

When activists quit saying “global warming” and started saying “climate change” the purpose was clear. “Global warming” means the earth is getting warmer. But “climate change” can mean about any weather that happens. Drought. Floods. Hot weather. And (yes) cold weather.

And so the activists blame Hurricane Harvey on “climate change.”

But the science says otherwise. From the Wall Street Journal:
Activists, journalists and scientists have pounced on the still-unfolding disaster in Houston and along the Gulf Coast in an attempt to focus the policy discussion narrowly on climate change. Such single-issue myopia takes precious attention away from policies that could improve our ability to prepare for and respond to disasters. More thoughtful and effective disaster policies are needed because the future will bring many more weather disasters like Hurricane Harvey, with larger impacts than those of the recent past.

For many years, those seeking to justify carbon restrictions argued that hurricanes had become more common and intense. That hasn’t happened. Scientific assessments, including those of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and the U.S. government’s latest National Climate Assessment, indicate no long-term increases in the frequency or strength of hurricanes in the U.S. Neither has there been an increase in floods, droughts and tornadoes, though heat waves and heavy precipitation have become more common.

Prior to Harvey, which made landfall as a Category 4 storm, the U.S. had gone a remarkable 12 years without being hit by a hurricane of Category 3 strength or stronger. Since 1970 the U.S. has only seen four hurricanes of Category 4 or 5 strength. In the previous 47 years, the country was struck by 14 such storms. President Obama presided over the lowest rate of hurricane landfalls—0.5 a year—of any president since at least 1900. Eight presidents dealt with more than two a year, but George W. Bush (18 storms) is the only one to have done so since Lyndon B. Johnson. The rest occurred before 1960.

Without data to support their wilder claims, climate partisans have now resorted to shouting that every extreme weather event was somehow “made worse” by the emission of greenhouse gases. Earlier this week, New York Times columnist David Leonhardt directed researchers “to shed some of the fussy over-precision about the relationship between climate change and weather.”

Turning away from empirical science—or “fussy over-precision”—comes with risks. But whatever one’s views on climate, there should be broad agreement today that bigger disasters are coming. Some may blame greenhouse gases while others may believe it to be some sort of karmic retribution. But there is a simpler explanation: Because the world has experienced a remarkable period of good fortune when it comes to catastrophes, we are due.
A good roundup of attempts by the activists to exploit the tragedy in Texas can be found here.

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Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Two Views of the KKK

Implicit Bias: Racial Bogeyman Debunked

Social psychologists and liberals who yearn for evidence that America is a racist nation have been disappointed by the fact that racial prejudice has declined sharply in the U.S., and has done so steadily since the first comprehensive survey was done in 1944.

Very few Americans say they would not vote for a black for president, or that they object to interracial marriage, and virtually nobody says they favor segregation.

So what are people who want to see themselves as social justice warriors, fighting the scourge of racism, going to do?

Simple, they have to find a new way to label people racist. One way to do this is to test them for “implicit bias.” Administered by computer, the Implicit Association Test typically shows that people have a preference for white faces rather than black faces.
The test works by measuring how quickly people can, for instance, associate African-American faces with positive words versus European American faces with those same positive words. In one round of the test, you’re instructed to press a particular key if a positive word like “pleasure” or “wonderful” flashes on the screen and to press that same key if a white face appears. Then, in another round, the program will tell you to press the same key for darker faces and positive words. It tracks how many mistakes you make and measures how quickly you press those keys, right down to fractions of a second. The site also offers tests that measure bias against other groups, including obese people, the disabled, and the elderly, though it’s the race results that tend to dominate the discussion.
Favoring white faces certainly sounds prejudiced, but does it show anything other than the fact that people associate negative things with black people? If so, how do we interpret that?

First, we have to remember that a lot of negative things are empirically associated with black people. Black people are more likely to be poor, to have limited education compared to whites, to be dependent on government assistance, to have been born out of wedlock,  to commit crime, etc.

Not nice thoughts, but the truth. So does the implicit bias test simply mean people know the truth, even if it isn’t politically correct to admit it? That would explain why even liberals who pride themselves on being unbiased and black people themselves show a preference for the white faces.

Does it Relate to Behavior?

But even empirically justified ideas about racial differences are unfair if they lead to people being treated according to the stereotype, rather than their actual individual merits.

It seems, however, that implicit bias has little relationship with how people actually behave. From the Chronicle of Higher Education:
But the link between unconscious bias, as measured by the test, and biased behavior has long been debated among scholars, and a new analysis casts doubt on the supposed connection.

Researchers from the University of Wisconsin at Madison, Harvard, and the University of Virginia examined 499 studies over 20 years involving 80,859 participants that used the IAT and other, similar measures. They discovered two things: One is that the correlation between implicit bias and discriminatory behavior appears weaker than previously thought. They also conclude that there is very little evidence that changes in implicit bias have anything to do with changes in a person’s behavior. These findings, they write, “produce a challenge for this area of research.”

That’s putting it mildly. “When you actually look at the evidence we collected, there’s not necessarily strong evidence for the conclusions people have drawn,” says Patrick Forscher, a co-author of the paper, which is currently under review at Psychological Bulletin. The finding that changes in implicit bias don’t lead to changes in behavior, Forscher says, “should be stunning.”
The (liberal) New York Magazine notes similar research:
Given all this excitement [generated by the IAT], it might feel safe to assume that the IAT really does measure people’s propensity to commit real-world acts of implicit bias against marginalized groups, and that it does so in a dependable, clearly understood way. After all, the test is hosted by Harvard, endorsed and frequently written about by some of the top social psychologists and science journalists in the country, and is currently seen by many as the most sophisticated way to talk about the complicated, fraught subject of race in America.

Unfortunately, none of that is true. A pile of scholarly work, some of it published in top psychology journals and most of it ignored by the media, suggests that the IAT falls far short of the quality-control standards normally expected of psychological instruments. The IAT, this research suggests, is a noisy, unreliable measure that correlates far too weakly with any real-world outcomes to be used to predict individuals’ behavior — even the test’s creators have now admitted as such. The history of the test suggests it was released to the public and excitedly publicized long before it had been fully validated in the rigorous, careful way normally demanded by the field of psychology. In fact, there’s a case to be made that Harvard shouldn’t be administering the test in its current form, in light of its shortcomings and its potential to mislead people about their own biases. There’s also a case to be made that the IAT went viral not for solid scientific reasons, but simply because it tells us such a simple, pat story about how racism works and can be fixed: that deep down, we’re all a little — or a lot — racist, and that if we measure and study this individual-level racism enough, progress toward equality will ensue.
We can be more blunt about why the test has been so popular. It offered a neat explanation for the situation of black Americans — and one politically correct people find congenial. Facing the truth would require discussing the culture of the black inner city: the number of kids born out of wedlock, the prevalence of crime, schools that are poor in spite of high levels of spending, attitudes hostile to a “straight” life of work and achievement.

That has to be avoided at all costs.

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Saturday, August 19, 2017

Let’s Forget About All That

GLENN MCCOY © Belleville News-Democrat. Dist. By UNIVERSAL UCLICK. Reprinted with permission. All rights reserved.

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Black Lives Matter Lauded Fidel Castro

We are behind the curve on this, but better late than never. From the Huffington Post:
Upon hearing of the passing of Fidel Castro, Cuba’s dictator-emeritus, leftist politicians and celebrities wasted no time taking to social media to sing their sweet elegies for the Western Hemisphere’s most notorious tyrant.

Yet these tribute tweets, brimming with unwarranted admiration, soon encountered fierce resistance. There were those who quite sensibly pointed out Castro’s litany of human rights abuses. To speak approvingly of Castro, to eulogize him through euphemism, is to sanitize the legacy of a man who, in addition to committing egregious human rights violations, also tanked one of Latin America’s most historically prosperous economies.

But the Castro enthusiasts were also rebuked by a different sort of argument: the eruption of pure, unbridled celebration on the streets of Miami, the place where many exiled Cubans now call home.

While headlines and hashtags seemed to center mostly on the remarks of Barack Obama, Enrique Peña Nieto, Narendra Modi, and Justin Trudeau, one of the most benighted responses came from the feed of Black Lives Matter.

On Sunday, the organization published an essay, “Lessons from Fidel: Black Lives Matter and the Transition of El Comandante,” in which the leaders of the movement encourage their own to “push back against the rhetoric of the right and come to the defense of El Comandante” as they “aspire to build a world rooted in a vision of freedom and the peace that only comes with justice.”

Of course, there is much else wrong with Black Lives Matter.

But this whole business raises a question: while conservative politicians are required to renounce white supremacist organizations, and when they do (as Donald Trump did) are hectored for not denouncing them in sufficient feverish language, it’s just fine for liberal politicians to cozy up to Black Lives Matter.

As Barack Obama did.

And of course, the same corporations that engaged in smarmy virtue signalling about the Charlottesville riots (placing all the blame on the white nationalists, and none on Antifa) have pandered to and funded Black Lives Matter.

Of course, the hatred of police that Black Lives Matter engenders among blacks is ultimately harmful to the black community. But the liberal politicians and the corporate panderers don’t care. They have gotten the protection they wanted.

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Friday, August 18, 2017

What Does “Alt-Right” Mean?

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Not the Business You Are In

Tuesday, August 08, 2017

Lena Dunham: Trying to Get American Airlines Employees Fired Over Private Conversation on Transgenderism

From the Federalist:
This week, famous millennial journaler Lena Dunham was strolling through an airport eavesdropping on a couple of flight attendants. There she was, just a right-thinking individual with fluency in approved language and a desire for a kind and compassionate society, when she heard a conversation that violated her sense of an ideal society.

Then, as any individual principally interested in kindness and empathy would do, she reported the flight attendants’ conversation to their bosses at American Airlines.

Then, filled once more with the compassion and humility that are her hallmarks, Dunham broadcast this conversation, and her reporting of it, to her millions of social media followers. American Airlines is reportedly looking into it.

Because how, pray tell, could the world be a good place if middle-class flight attendants are allowed to talk to their friends at work in any way that gives this rich, famous public emoter a sad? What have we become, as a country, if millionaire, private-school progeny of Brooklyn art-scene families can’t have their exact conception of acceptable conversation reflected back to them during every minute of a flight delay?

Here’s What Lena Dunham Had a Fit About This Time

Hearing this conversation, Dunham wrote, was the “worst part” of her night.

This is the conversation Dunham alleges she heard. They were “talking about how trans kids are a trend they’d never accept a trans child and transness is gross.”
The author, Mary Katharine Ham, goes on to observe that:
This is the sinister side of the liberal “hamburger problem” Josh Barro wrote about. His thesis is Democrats could win a lot more elections if they stop insufferably hectoring everyone about everything— for instance, insisting eating a hamburger is an inherently political act because of the public health consequences and the carbon footprint and the blah, blah, blah. He’s probably right about that, but many liberals go far beyond hectoring.

Dunham isn’t content to publicly lecture about trans issues. She wants to punish people who disagree with her, going after their jobs without so much as a conversation with them, and she expects to be thanked and honored for her good works.
This, of course, is the sort of bigotry that thrives in academia. Marquette University, in an online module on “harassment” had a little scenario where two female employees where talking to each other, and expressed their opposition to gay marriage. An employee who overheard it was offended, and it was was made clear that the women were guilty of harassment, simply by expressing an opinion that somebody overheard and disapproved of.

It’s a cliché, but worth repeating, that the people who talk all the time about “tolerance” are the biggest bigots.

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