Category Archive 'Racial Politics'
11 Aug 2018

White-Bashing Can Be an Excellent Career Move

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Reihan Salam is of Bangladeshi extraction and went to Harvard, so he is in a position to explain precisely where Sarah Jeong’s animosity toward white men is coming from.

In some instances, white-bashing can actually serve as a means of ascent, especially for Asian Americans. Embracing the culture of upper-white self-flagellation can spur avowedly enlightened whites to eagerly cheer on their Asian American comrades who show (abstract, faceless, numberless) lower-white people what for. And, simultaneously, it allows Asian Americans who use the discourse to position themselves as ethnic outsiders, including those who are comfortably enmeshed in elite circles.

Think about what it takes to claw your way into America’s elite strata. Unless you were born into the upper-middle class, your surest route is to pursue an elite education. To do that, it pays to be exquisitely sensitive to the beliefs and prejudices of the people who hold the power to grant you access to the social and cultural capital you badly want. By setting the standards for what counts as praiseworthy, elite universities have a powerful effect on youthful go-getters. Their admissions decisions represent powerful “nudges” towards certain attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors, and I’ve known many first- and second-generation kids—I was one of them—who intuit this early on.

Consider the recent contretemps over Harvard’s undergraduate admissions policies. Critics argue that the university actively discriminates against high-achieving Asian American applicants by claiming that a disproportionately large number of them have lackluster personalities. One obvious reaction to this charge is to denounce Harvard for its supposed double standards. This reaction might be especially appealing to those who see themselves as the sort of people who’d be dismissed by Harvard’s suspect screening process, and who’d thus have every reason to resent it. Viewed through an elite-eye lens, though, this sort of reaction can seem a little gauche. You’re saying, in a sense, that you can’t hack it—you just can’t crack the code. To a successful code-cracker, that could seem more than a little pathetic.

So what if you’re an Asian American who has already made the cut? In that case, you might celebrate Harvard’s wisdom in judiciously balancing its student body, or warn that Harvard’s critics have a darker, more ominous agenda that can’t be trusted. This establishes you as an insider, who gets that Harvard is doing the right thing, while allowing you to distance yourself from less-enlightened, and less-elite, people of Asian origin: You’re all being duped by evil lower-whites who don’t grok racial justice.

And if you’re an Asian American aspiring to make the cut, even with the deck stacked against you, you might eschew complaining in favor of doing everything in your power to cultivate the personal qualities Harvard wants most, or at least to appear to have done so. One straightforward way to demonstrate that you are Harvard material might be to denounce Harvard as racist, provided you’re careful to do so in a way that flatters rather than offends those who run the university and are invested in its continued success. For example, you might reject the notion that affirmative action is the problem while arguing that Harvard shouldn’t endeavor to increase representation of rural and working-class whites, on the spurious grounds that all whites are privileged. That you’ll make these claims even though you yourself are hardly among the most downtrodden is immaterial: The important thing is to be interesting. What better way to demonstrate that you’re not a humdrum worker bee, afflicted with a lackluster personality, than to carefully and selectively express the right kind of righteous indignation?

I certainly don’t mean to single out Harvard. As the senior assistant director of admissions at Yale recently observed, “for those students who come to Yale, we expect them to be versed in issues of social justice. We encourage them to be vocal when they see an opportunity for change in our institution and in the world.” Picture yourself as an eager high schooler reading these words, and then jotting down notes. You absorb, assuming you hadn’t already, what it takes to make your way in contemporary elite America. And as you grow older, you lean into the rhetorical gambits that served you so well in the past. You might even build a worldview out of them.

RTWT

25 Jun 2018

Laura Ingalls Wilder’s Name Pulled from Award over “Stereotypical Attitudes”

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Fox News:

Laura Ingalls Wilder’s name is set to be removed from a major children’s book award after concerns were raised about the “Little House on the Prairie” author’s depiction of certain races in the early-to-mid 20th century.

The Association of Library Service to Children’s (ALSC) board voted unanimously on Saturday to rename the “Laura Ingalls Wilder Award” as the “Children’s Literature Legacy Award.”

The association, which took the vote at its board meeting in New Orleans, said the vote “was greeted by a standing ovation by the audience in attendance.”

Wilder is best known for her “Little House on the Prairie” novels, which the ALSC has stated “includes expressions of stereotypical attitudes inconsistent with ALSC’s core values” based on Wilder’s portrayal of black people and Native Americans.

The first award was given to Wilder in 1954. The ALSC, which is based in Chicago, says her work continues to be published and read but her “legacy is complex” and “not universally embraced.

RTWT

I expect that Wilder’s Libertarian views were actually more responsible for provoking the animosity of ALSC members.

22 Jun 2018

Exeter Prof: “Mathematics to Blame for Global Disparities in Wealth”

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Campus Reform shares the latest breakthrough in thought from today’s Academy.

In a chapter for a new textbook, University of Exeter professor Paul Ernest warns that mathematics education can cause “collateral damage” to society by training students in “ethics-free thought.”

He even argues that since money involves mathematics, math is “implicated in the global disparities of wealth” because math students are taught to value “detached” and “calculative” reasoning.

RTWT

04 Jun 2018

If You Were Wondering Why Trump Won…

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01 Jun 2018

Life in America Today

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27 Apr 2018

Stephen Foster Statue Removed in Pittsburgh

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The statue that formerly stood outside the Carnegie Library in Pittsburgh depicted the young Stephen Foster being inspired by an African American playing a banjo.

Nearly all the important American music of the 19th century was composed by Stephen Foster in the course of his brief lifetime. The music of the minstrel show comes essentially from Stephen Foster, and that music went right on into vaudeville and later Hollywood. A handful of Stephen Foster tunes remain staples even today. Try imagining the Kentucky Derby without “My Old Kentucky Home.”

No one played a greater role in integrating the music and culture of African Americans into the universal popular culture of the country. No one ever depicted the viewpoint and character of the African American with more sympathy and affection.

It was the music of Stephen Foster that made white entertainers don blackface in order to emulate with affection the humor, the rhetoric, and the distinctive character of the African American.

No one more important and influential to the culture of the United States ever came from Pittsburgh.

Who would imagine that in blue-collar, beer-drinking, steel-making Pittsburgh the Social Justice Warriors would be in power and able yesterday to pull down Stephen Foster’s statue put up in 1900 by a local committee headed –no less– by Andrew Mellon?

What a despicable time we live in, in which being some species of nincompoop seems to be an essential ingredient for promotion to a position of public responsibility and authority!

Some News Agency has the story.

The Second Reconstruction marches on, right over America.

18 Apr 2018

Starbucks Now a Free Homeless Facility

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crypt‏ @nmgrm: the left is culturally dominant because of decadent subsistence patterns, the collapse of industrial agricultural civilization will serve to decolonize our minds from progressive ideas of history.

Ace is having loads of fun watching Starbucks’ management’s PC acrobatics:

23. Now Starbucks is saying this was all contrary to their policy and, presumably, anyone who wants to sit in their shops and not order anything and use the bathrooms has the right to do so as long as they like.

24. Starbucks, in other words, has just announced its stores are not stores primarily, but are now privately-funded shelters and bathroom facilities for the homeless. You don’t have to spend a slim dime in the store to sit as long as you please and use the bathrooms.

25. That’ll be great for Starbucks’ business. Their yuppie douchebag clientele love the homeless in the abstract, but we’ll see how much they appreciate their coffee shops being jammed with them, close-up-like, occupying most tables and chairs.

26. I don’t even want to defend Starbucks; I want them to have the full taste of Social Justice Warrior progressivism. If this is the company’s ideology, then they should live that ideology to the full.

RTWT

15 Apr 2018

“Civilizations”

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The late Kenneth Clark.

The BBC has decided to attempt to rebut Kenneth Clark’s magisterial tour d’horizon of Western Art, the 13-part 1969 television series “Civilization.” This rejoinder on behalf of our contemporary Woke Multicultural Establishment begins appearing Tuesday evening in the United States on PBS.

Kenneth Clark singlehandedly took viewers from Greek Antiquity to the 20th Century, but correcting Clark’s Eurocentric emphasis on Dead White Great Men apparently requires three presenters: Classicist Mary Beard, the talented (but respectably progressive) historian Simon Schama, and (the Nigerian and therefore full-fledged representative of the viewpoint of persons and cultures of Color) David Olusoga.

Andrew Ferguson, at the Weekly Standard, has seen the series, and warns us what to expect:

[Civilizations] is kind of Clark-like —a catalogue of glorious creations followed by a vision of an art form in an advanced state of spiritual exhaustion. The difference is that the decline of an art form saddened Clark. Each of the episodes of Civilisations that I’ve seen ends with a celebratory profile of a contemporary artist. Invariably their work suffers in comparison with what’s gone before—how could it not?—but the moments serve a summary purpose.

The episode called “How Do We Look?” closes with Kehinde Wiley, the artist who recently completed the official presidential portrait of Barack Obama. The narrator describes Wiley as a practitioner of “the modern art of the body,” which “draws its power” from “challenging the tradition of classical art.” Of course he lives in Brooklyn but “he has traveled all over the world to explore the legacy of colonialism and the different ways we see.” Suddenly we see him in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, moving from masterpiece to masterpiece. A tinny ensemble plays Vivaldi—a fusty reminder of the distant past. “I love the history of art,” he tells the camera. “I love looking at these beautiful images. But I also recognize that there’s something quite sinister about their past.”

“Sinister” sounds judgmental, doesn’t it? So judgmental indeed that I don’t think even Clark used it at all in his Civilisation. But it nicely summarizes the attitude toward the West that viewers of the new Civilisations will find unavoidable, even if they’re confident enough to find it unpersuasive.

Next to life-enhancing, the most important word in Clark’s account of civilization was confidence. Several things came together to make a civilization, Clark said: a measure of material prosperity, a sense of history, a range of vision, and a feeling of permanence, of being situated in a particular moment between past and future, that makes it worthwhile to construct things meant to last.

“But far more,” he said, “it requires confidence—confidence in the society in which one lives, belief in its philosophy, belief in its laws, confidence in one’s own mental powers.” His program was an effort to persuade his audience that confidence in their inherited civilization was well-earned.

In the closing moments of the final episode of Civilisation, Clark intended to strike a note of optimism. “When I look at the world about me in the light of these programs, I don’t at all feel as though we are entering on a new period of barbarism,” he said. He shows us the campus of the then-new University of East Anglia. Apple-cheeked college students pop in and out of classrooms, labor over books—the baby boomers as Clark hoped they were in 1969. “These inheritors of all our catastrophes look cheerful enough. . . . In fact, I should doubt if so many people have ever been as well-fed, as well-read, as bright-minded, as curious, and as critical as the young are today.”

Watching at home, we can assume, was the 14-year-old Mary Beard, all a-tingle and raring to go to college herself, where she could use her curiosity and reading and bright-mindedness to prove the great man and his theory wrong.

RTWT

———————

A recent biography of Kenneth Clark and his “Civilization” series was recently discussed here.

08 Apr 2018

Black Florida Legislator Thanks God for Slavery

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Florida Rep. Kimberly Daniels

Kimberly Daniels is a former prostitute who got religion, became a minister, and wound up elected to the Florida State House of Representatives from Jacksonville as a democrat.

She recently sponsored a bill which would require Florida public schools to post “In God We Trust” on their premises, which has outraged the militant secularist crowd.

Progressive Secular Humanist Michael Stone had a cow on the Patheos blog over a recent comment by Daniels thanking God for American Antebellum Slavery, because “if it wasn’t for slavery, I might be somewhere in Africa worshipping a tree.”

Personally, I found her comment refreshingly un-PC and a lot more intelligent than the standard bitching and moaning about 150-years-dead historical circumstances and events.

Rep. Daniels’ quip is obviously not precisely accurate, absent slavery, today’s individual African Americans simply would never would have been born. But if, like Rep. Daniels, they indulge in imagining themselves born with the same identical personhood in their ancestral African place of genetic origin, they obviously would find themselves living in extreme poverty and primitive circumstances, with a much shorter life expectancy, possibly exposed to the hazards of tribal or religious violence or even to a slave trade still operating in the 21st Century, and worshiping trees or worse.

Michael Stone barks: “The stupid, it burns.” Well, he ought to know, because he, not Rep. Daniels, is the stupid one.

The African American community would be a lot better off with more leaders and spokesmen like Kimberly Daniels than they are with Al Sharpton and Ta-Nehisi Coates.

26 Mar 2018

The NFL Uses an IQ Test — Who Ever Would Have Believed It?

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I bet Kaepernick failed. From Steve Sailer:

When I was young, Sports Illustrated would run literary essays about marlin fishing with gentleman adventurers, but now they just run nine-part series on the NFL draft prospects of Baker Mayfield, the Heisman Trophy winning quarterback from Oklahoma.

    At some point during the NFL combine, between the MRIs and the 15-minute team interviews and the early-morning drug tests, almost every prospect takes a little-known test known as the AIQ, or Athletic Intelligence Quotient. Dr. Scott Goldman and Dr. Jim Bowman have spent the last 15 years developing the exam, administered on a touchscreen and intended to improve upon the methodology of the Wonderlic test, the longtime benchmark for intelligence testing at the combine still in use today.

    You’ve probably never heard of the AIQ, and that’s by design; two teams are under contract with Bowman and Goldman’s company—Athletic Intelligence Measures—and purchase the rookie data in full. (The company does not disclose the names of its clients.) About a half dozen additional teams each year buy portions of the data (typically, the test scores for the Top 100 prospects on their boards). The company has administered more than 4,000 tests across each of the major American sports leagues, and started administering the test at the combine in 2012.

    “Years ago, we discovered the Wonderlic was the only test that was used to measure intelligence at the combine, and that was based off a theory from 1934,” Goldman says. “It’s language-dependent, and it has socioeconomic and cultural biases. So we spent years looking at all the forms of intelligence and cognitive abilities that impact unsolvable puzzles.”

    They debuted the test with the NFL in 2012, testing on a limited basis at the combine, and for the last two years they’ve tested each prospect invited to the combine. Now that they’ve tested thousands of future pros, they’re beginning to see results.

    “I’m proud of this,” Goldman says. “We’ve found a statistically-significant correlation between our test and on-field performance, and this is the first test I’m aware of that has found that in the NFL. Players with a high AIQ tend to get on the field sooner and stay on the field longer.” …

    Goldman declined to confirm the performance of specific players, but did acknowledge a QB prospect this year scored in the Top 100 on the AIQ all-time—out of more than 4,000 tests—and is the second-highest scoring quarterback out of 63 who have taken the test since 2012. Two league sources, who asked for anonymity to discuss the testing results of a prospect, confirmed it was Mayfield.

13 Mar 2018

National Geographic Goes Gramscian: No More Brown-Skinned Boobs For You, Racists!

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The leftist nincompoops have captured another cultural landmark.

This month, Editor-in-Chief Susan Goldberg, accompanied by a specially-hired-for-the-occasion academic racial-grievances-mongerer with some Yale degrees, apologizes for the magazine’s traditional historic function: purveying photos of topless native girls in a respectable venue for men and boys to peruse while trapped waiting for their appointment in the doctor or dentist’s office.

Just listen to this crap:

[The black academic consultant] found… a long tradition of racism in the magazine’s coverage: in its text, its choice of subjects, and in its famed photography.

    “[U]ntil the 1970s National Geographic all but ignored people of color who lived in the United States, rarely acknowledging them beyond laborers or domestic workers,” writes Goldberg in the issue’s editor letter, where she discusses Mason’s findings. “Meanwhile it pictured ‘natives’ elsewhere as exotics, famously and frequently unclothed, happy hunters, noble savages—every type of cliché.”

Unlike magazines such as Life, “National Geographic did little to push its readers beyond the stereotypes ingrained in white American culture,” Goldberg says, noting that she is the first woman and first Jewish person to helm the magazine – “two groups that also once faced discrimination here.”

All of which strongly suggests that previous hiring policies were a lot wiser and better.

To assess the magazine’s coverage historically, [the racial grievance specialist] delved into old issues and read a couple of key critical studies. He also pored over photographers’ contact sheets, giving him a view of not just the photos that made it into print, but also the decisions that photographers and editors made.

He saw a number of problematic themes emerge.

    “The photography, like the articles, didn’t simply emphasize difference, but made difference … very exotic, very strange, and put difference into a hierarchy,” Mason tells NPR. “And that hierarchy was very clear: that the West, and especially the English-speaking world, was at the top of the hierarchy. And black and brown people were somewhere underneath.”

For much of its history, the pages of National Geographic depicted the Western world as dynamic, forward-moving and very rational. Meanwhile, [the professional race warrior complained], “the black and brown world was primitive and backwards and generally unchanging.”

How did the obviously true magically recently become “problematic”?

One trope that he noticed time and again was photographs showing native people apparently fascinated by Westerners’ technology.

“It’s not simply that cameras and jeeps and airplanes are present,” he says. “It’s the people of color looking at this technology in amusement or bewilderment.” The implication was that Western readers would find humor in such fascination with their everyday goods.

Then there’s how the magazine chose its subject matter. Mason explains that National Geographic had an explicit editorial policy of “nothing unpleasant,” so readers rarely saw war, famine or civic conflict.

So the depiction of insufficiently flattering reality in the old days was just plain wrong. People of color, even if living in the Stone Age techologically, ought to have been touched up editorially into sophisticated and superior Wakandas, and the old family magazine ought to have been delivering a steady ration of Marxist agitprop supporting Third World revolutionary movements in every issue. Right!

Left-wing idiots screw up everything they get their hands on. With the old National Geographic transformed into Whining-About-Discrimination-and-Bitching-About-Western-Civilization-While-Arguing-How-Not-Only-Equal-But-Downright-Superior-People-of-Color-Everywhere-Are Geographic, my prediction is that it’s going to be a lot less pleasant to read and circulation is going to tank.

Who the hell wants to read a bunch of Virtue Signalling sermons on Intersectionality and Oppression, the Evils of White Privilege, and the Historical Crimes of Europe and America, while waiting for one’s root canal? That sort of thing simply gratuitously deepens and extends the whole root canal experience.

08 Mar 2018

Too Alt-Right For Me

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Brett Stevens wants reparations with repatriation.

For a moment, step back from your preconceptions and view this world from the viewpoint of a minority group who were not the founders of a nation.

This place was not designed for you. None of its symbols, customs, values, imagery, or history fits you. In fact, the majority only makes it worse when they try to include you, because this does not negate the fact that you were brought here as labor, whether in chains or as a low-paid immigrant.

You can try to “assimilate,” as the moron conservatives argue, but that means giving up who you are and admitting that you are a conquered people. In fact, no matter what you do, you will feel like a conquered people, at least until you live in a land founded by your people, designed for your people, commanded by your people.

This applies to every group but the founding Western Europeans. [Emphasis added] If you are not English, German, Scots, Dutch, northern French, or Nordic, you are going to find that the founding group look different from you and their values and customs are alien to you. Their ways exclude the ways you need to live and behave.

As a result, you are always looking for compensation. Not because you feel injured, per se, because you are living better here than in your source nation. You want compensation because you feel left out, and you are always going to feel left out until your people are in control.

And those nice majority people? They seem friendly, but you know that everyone acts in their own best interests and wants to live among people like themselves. When they run off to a Whitopia, you know that even if you batter down the doors and get in, that place is Not For You.

You contemplate going back to your source nation. It might be a little rough, but there are great places to live in Africa, Asia, and the Middle East. Your middle classes now have the knowledge they picked up at trade schools and business schools to make an American/European-style first world nation within the third world.

RTWT

OK, grumpy old un-PC type that I am, the idea of writing a check and then waving bye-bye to Ta-Nehisi Coates has more than a little appeal. But, what do you know? Micks, Wops, Bohunks and Polacks, all the Roman Catholic ethnic groups are also not “founding Western Europeans” and are evidently hopelessly unassimilable, even us Lithuanians (unless we get to sneak in, just like those non-founding square-headed Scandinavians, under the “Nordic” quota, based on conspicuously large percentages of people with blue eyes and blond hair).

If I’m going back to Lithuania, my reparations had better be large enough to acquire and restore a decent manor house.

And, just think, Dutchies like Vanderleun get to stay!

20 Feb 2018

Deconstructing Whiteness at Yale

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Claudia Rankine, genius!

Claudia Rankine is a professional aggrieved-African-American. In 2014, she received the National Book Award for poetry for Citizen: An American Lyric, a tract exposing America’s “systemic racism.”

Two years later, she was awarded the $625,000 MacArthur genius grant for her poetic efforts at making people “understand that whiteness is not inevitable, and that white dominance is not inevitable.”

So thoroughly committed to its own denunciation is the American Establishment, that Rankine is now teaching a combined English/African American Studies course at Yale.

Yale Course Catalog:

* ENGL 233B/AFAM 232B, CONSTRUCTIONS OF WHITENESS Claudia Rankine
An interdisciplinary approach to the study of whiteness. Discussion of whiteness as a culturally constructed and economically incorporated entity, which touches upon and assigns value to nearly every aspect of American life and culture. HU [meaning its a “Humanities” area course]
T 1:30 PM — 3:20 PM

The College Fix obtained a copy of the course syllabus, which explains that the goal of the class is to “create a lab for the construction of counternarratives around whiteness in any creative form: play, poem, memoir, etc.”

The class is divided into eight topics: Constructions of Whiteness, White Property, White Masculinity, White Femininity, White Speech, White Prosperity, White Spaces and White Imagination.

Readings include: Michael Kimmel’s “Angry White Men: American Masculinity at the End of an Era,” Richard Dyer’s “White: Essays on Race and Culture,” and Richard Delgado’s and Jean Stefanic’s “Critical White Studies: Looking Behind the Mirror,” Hazel Carby’s “White Woman, Listen!,” Juliana Spahr’s “My White Feminism,” and Professor Rankine’s own work, “The White Card.”

Obviously, if you are a normal person, you would think that the United States has for the last 60-odd years made constant and extravagant, even sometimes highly questionable, efforts to eliminate racism and to integrate and advance African-Americans.

It is painfully obvious that Ms. Rankine’s awards, recognition as a poet and “genius,” her opportunity to teach at Yale, and the very recognition of the nonsense and stupidity that she professionally spouts as some kind of serious discourse worthy of inclusion in the curriculum of a great university constitutes racial favoritism requiring the most extreme kind of intellectual and moral acrobatics on the part of the precise tippy-top of this society’s establishment.

But when you can get $625,000 genius awards, national literary prizes, an apartment in a Manhattan high rise, and a teaching gig at Yale, all for whining, complaining, and kicking your benefactor culture and society in the teeth, you are obviously going to bitch, and whine, and kick to a fare-thee-well.

Personally, I’d rather pay these kinds of people to sing about Jesus and play the banjo.

13 Feb 2018

Typical of Caliban

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Barack Hussein Obama’s presidential portrait, as you can see above, is characteristically incongruous when viewed among portraits of his predecessors.

And there just could be a concealed subtext to be found in his choice of artist. Not every president has himself painted by an artist best known for paintings of black women cutting off the heads of white people.

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