Wednesday, July 24, 2019
If you believe in equal protection under the law and such things as "innocent until proven guilty" you should be mad as hell at what Mueller said today: This was a what? "A unique situation" No. The president, like every other fucking citizen is protected under the law. That includes the presumption of innocence. A few years ago I wrote about the stop and frisk policy in NYC. Even though it undoubtedly saved lives, I was and AM against it because it blatantly violated the 4th amendment rights of the persons stopped. Courts agreed and ordered NY to stop the practice. It was the right thing to do. No citizen should be subject to "unique situation" prosecutions that abridge their rights. Such behavior is a threat to each and every one of us. Shame on Mueller for even moving his mouth to speak such a thing. Shame on any and every media outlet that lets such a thing pass. Shame on any and every elected official that thinks such a thing is OK. Shame on YOU if you're a US citizen reading this and are not bothered.
Monday, July 22, 2019
An article from citylimits.org dropped in my feed the other day. Entitled Overdue Assignment: Making NYC Schools Culturally Responsive, it encapsulates a lot of what is wrong with the American educational system and why there are attacks on what used to be considered core tenets of American society such as "innocent until proven guilty". Let's look at the piece:
“The curriculum taught me that white people captured me and took away my freedom. Why would I want to learn this?” That goes through the minds of many black students as they sit in social studies class, says Jamaal Bowman, principal of Cornerstone Academy for Social Action in Co-op City.Well you shouldn't want to learn that because it is not what happened. This myth of the "white man stole us" is, unfortunately embedded in the minds of many black people. History shows that what actually happened was that Africans were sold to Europeans (when they weren't being sold to Arabs) by other Africans. Many of these enslaved Africans were victims of warfare (sometimes motivated by the selling of Africans). Others were simply kidnapped, by other Africans. These enslaved Africans were then brought to the coast where they were housed in places like El Mina
Cornerstone takes a different approach. While many schools begin their study of black history with American slavery, Cornerstone reaches back to Ancient Egypt’s African roots. His students, Bowman told a town hall on education in the Bronx last month, learn that they “are descendants of kings and queens, not descendants of slaves. That’s a big difference.”Ahh history class as self-esteem boosting session. Think about this. In England there is one king and one queen and a few princes and princesses, etc. Out of a population of 53 million people. How do you think that YOU are descended from "kings and queens"? Seriously. While there are noted cases where a king or queen were captured and transported, the sheer number of people means that YOU are *unlikely* to be descended from *any* of them. If you need to be told that you are descended from "kings and queens" in order to feel better about yourself, you have serious issues. Schools should not be lying to students. That there are/were African royalty doesn't mean that all Africans are "descended from kings and queens" anymore than being English makes you English royalty.
Nelson Luna of the Bronx, now a first-year student at Columbia University, agrees that’s not currently the case. “When you don’t see yourself, you don’t feel connected and you don’t feel passionate. You feel out of place,” says Luna, a co-founder of Teens Take Charge, which organizes students to speak out about integration and other issues.It is not the purpose of American history classes to "make you see yourself". It is the purpose of American history classes to teach American history, which for the large part doesn't include a lot of non-whites. Why? Because they are not the founding population. This is like going to Japan and complaining that you don't "see yourself". Why should you?
More than a half century after schools abandoned the “Dick and Jane” readers in the wake of concerns about their whiteness and sexism, many lessons and materials in New York City schools seem out of touch with a student body that is about 85 percent of black, Latino and Asian.Colonizers erase the history and language of the "host" country. This is colonization. the "Dick and Jane" readers that I grew up on didn't bother me one bit. I spent hours reading books because I liked to read. No one was telling me how oppressive it was to read The Count of Monte Cristo, Moby Dick, etc. Here's the thing, you can be "inclusive" without tossing "Dick and Jane". These black, Latino and Asian" students need to recognize that "Dick and Jane" founded the country and have a right to be in the curriculum.
A few highly publicized incidents have drawn attention to the issue. There was the 5th grade practice test that praised Robert E. Lee’s wife for showing “genuine concern” for her slaves by teaching them to read, write and sew.I'm old enough to remember when my elders in the "struggle" told me that there were many "good white people" who did things that could get them killed. Teaching an enslaved African how to read or write was often a severely punishable offense. Many of us cannot fathom the idea that such a simple thing that we take for granted could result in hanging from a tree somewhere. We never used to "shit" on such persons. Now I suppose such things are not "woke" enough. I thought the new woke was supposed to support white people being "race traitors". Clearly Lee's wife would qualify. By the way, both Nat Turner and Fredrick Douglass were taught to read by white people.
In history, many issues are ignored or distorted. “Often, we don’t tell complex histories nor do we tell truthful histories,” says coalition coordinator Natasha Capers. “Students are still learning that Columbus discovered American and he was a brave explorer tried and true. That is just not true. And it erases the true history of what Columbus did across the Americas to other folks.”See opening paragraphs in regards to "distorted" and "untrue" history. You don't replace one "untrue" story with another. Secondly whether one like Columbus or not, sailing around the globe at that time was a brave act. Particularly going to "wrong" direction at a time that people generally thought the world was flat. It's really easy for city kids with zero experience sailing to talk shit about Columbus.
Aneth Naranjo, director of youth leadership at IntegrateNYC and a recent graduate of Leon Goldstein High School for the Sciences in Brooklyn, thinks her history courses there had a white male perspective. “The American Revolution gets so much time but they skip over hundreds of years of slavery,” she said, adding, “As a Latina, I know my people’s history has a place in our history but I never got that.”Firstly, I'm getting quite annoyed about all these "youth leaders". Secondly, as stated before, the United States was founded by whites (including males). That's why they get so much time. Again, it's like going to Japan and complaining about how Asians are 99% of the history. Duh. Slavery in America proper lasted a bit over 100 years. Slavery as an institution is about as old as humans have been organized and is not peculiar to America (the country). Lastly the entire "as a Latina" means squat outside of Puerto Rico, the American southwest and California. The latter being previously property of Mexico, a Spanish colony, who lost a war with America.
Luna graduated from Democracy Prep Charter school in Upper Manhattan, which follows the state curriculum for global history. “You spend one day on South America, and two days on Africa, and most of the lessons are concentrated on European and American history,” he says. “The French Revolution–you go very in depth on that, almost two months.”Please send her back. To school, because clearly "Democracy Prep" failed to educate this person. There is a reason why the French Revolution looms large in American history. There is a reason why European history looms large in American history classes. Does this chick understand the implications of America basically being an extension of England? You cannot fully understand why we have the governing system we have if you do not understand European (specifically English) history.
Maurice Blackmon, a leadership and advocacy coach at IntegrateNYC, teaches a class called Worlds Collide at Essex Street Academy in lower Manhattan. It looks at three major American civilizations–the Maya, Taino and the Aztec–and considers “what made these civilizations unique and advanced for their time. We don’t spend the majority of the time talking about the genocide or the colonizing of civilizations. I think that is a unique approach,” Blackmon says.The Taino were not "advanced". Period. The Maya and Aztecs were advanced to a degree. I'm pretty certain that Mr. Blackmon doesn't want to get into the massive amounts of human sacrifices that were practices in Mezo-America. Nor do I believe that Blackmon would call any of that "civilized" nor want to be subject to it. I'm certain it pains Mr. Blackmon to admit that the Spanish were responsible for ending that practice and that many of the smaller tribes were extremely happy to no longer be subject to that barbarism.
This strikes a chord with the many Latino students at Essex. But Blackmon says studying those civilizations and reading multiple accounts of them helps the entire class: “It enables us to talk about how history is taught and whose history is taught and which context. [Students] really feel that they are doing the work of historians by engaging in these conversations instead of just sitting there and being fed history from a particular perspective”So these students graduate with no understanding of the cultures and people that actually founded the country they live in and hence why the institutions that were created by those people are the way they are. Again, History classes in these "schools" are actually indoctrination and self-esteem boosting enterprises. Explains a lot. I'm not against teaching about other histories and cultures in schools. I'm not even against critiquing the "standard" education curriculum. I am against inflating the egos of non-white students and turning them into victims by trying to equalize cultures and their achievements (and lack thereof). I'm against creating fake histories to compensate for fake histories. Sometimes the stone hard truth is: You and your people had shit to do with making America what it is, but please do take the opportunity to contribute without shitting on those who made the opportunity possible.
Thursday, July 18, 2019
So I take some time and visit Niagara Falls, leave the laptop, generally stay unplugged and I come home to see the media in a tizzy. I thought perhaps that they had finally discovered the fact that an Asian man was beaten by a band of white people wearing masks. After all the whole Jussie incident taught me that white people beating "POC" is a universally bad thing. I was wrong. Then I thought that perhaps the media discovered that a member of the same mask wearing group had stormed a government building armed with incendiary devices and a gun. Because I'm old enough to remember when a man blew up a government building and that such activities were a very bad thing. No, I was wrong. Apparently the actual outrage was that Trump said some snarky stuff to a set of women who spend a lot of their public press time talking snarky stuff about Trump. Politicians trading insults. I'm not going to comment on the comments. What I want to know is why actual political violence perpetrated by masked and armed "Antifa" is barely news in the MSM and barely worthy of commentary by those running for office. This latest Trump commentary took less than 6 hours to be news everywhere including morning show "analysis" while the aforementioned criminal and terrorist activities of a masked group of people warrant not much more than a peep.
Wednesday, July 10, 2019
So Apple is launching free workshops to "young Londoners" [BAME] at risk of being "caught up" in gangs. Awww...
Bi-weekly sessions, which will also include workshops on photography and health and fitness tech, will be led by the company’s London team members, with Instagram influencers and industry experts brought in to speak and provide demonstrations.I assure you that the "young Londoners" who are "at risk" already have access to Instagram and whatever and whoever artist they are going to do the dog and pony show with. Why is there a need for a special program?
They include north London-based Art Against Knives, which runs art projects with 10 to 25-year-olds, and Croydon’s City Listeners, which supports young people aged 12 to 18 identified as being ‘at risk’ with mentors, 1:1 sessions and group workshops to build key life skills. [my underlines]"Workshops to build key life skills" is called "school" and "parenting". Why does the city of London need to do what the parents are supposed to be doing? And if the "young Londoners" were so inclined to learn "key life skills" in a group setting wouldn't they be in, you know, school?
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “I am determined to do everything I can to provide positive opportunities for young people this summer and that’s why I am pleased to be working with Apple on a series of programmes to help young people develop the skills they need to get the jobs of tomorrow, while also ensuring they have something constructive and safe to do during the summer holidays.” [my underlines]Once again, "Programmes to help young people develop skills they need to get the jobs of tomorrow" is called...school. If they were so educationally inclined already, wouldn't they not be "at risk"? The "jobs of tomorrow" that require coding skills, require that a person be inclined to sit in front of a screen for hours at a time while solving problems in a logical way. If these "young Londoners" were so inclined, wouldn't they not be "at risk"? And if they are NOT already so inclined, exactly what is the point? The only good I see this doing is getting "young Londoners" who are at risk of being victims of gangs wilding out with various bladed objects, off the street. That's a good thing. But to pretend that those who are wilding out with blades are doing so because they have nothing better to do with their time (as they perceive it) is foolish. They will play with Logic and Garageband on Apple's dime during the day and poke holes in a vic that evening. Trust.
Paul Craig Roberts writes:
Here is a video of one of the migrant gangs that have been welcomed into Europe sticking a pistol’s barrel into the mouth of a male Swedish teenager and ordering him to dance. Having been taught that it is racist, and perhaps a crime, to oppose invaders from the Third World, instead of fighting back the Swedish teenager complies and accepts, like a good European male, the humiliation.Video: https://www.infowars.com/video-of-migrant-gang-shoving-gun-in-swedish-boys-mouth-stirs-controversy/ Just want to point out that if someone has a gun in your mouth or pointed in your direction you do whatever they tell you to do. As Active Self Protection says: You wait your turn. Other than that, I concur. Much of Europe is done for and have only themselves to blame.
Brown V Board is the [American] historic decision that desegregated schools. Since desegregation is a word tossed around without any apparent understanding of what it is, I'll take the time to remind the reader that segregation was a legal framework that separated races in various areas of people activities including education. There was nothing "voluntary" about it. One couldn't move into a better neighborhood to get your kid into a white school. Your money didn't matter. What passes today as "segregation" are either a result of living patterns that people voluntarily enter into or are the result of scores on standardized tests. There is no "segregation" in America today. People choose to aggregate in groups based on income, social status, etc. Getting back to Brown, the decision was based on some extremely faulty thinking:
"Segregation of white and colored children in public schools has a detrimental effect upon the colored children. The impact is greater when it has the sanction of the law, for the policy of separating the races is usually interpreted as denoting the inferiority of the negro group. A sense of inferiority affects the motivation of a child to learn. Segregation with the sanction of law, therefore, has a tendency to [retard] the educational and mental development of negro children and to deprive them of some of the benefits they would receive in a racial[ly] integrated school system. [Footnote 10]" [My underlines]So here we have the court saying that black children, in the absence of white children would be unable to develop properly and that they needed the contact with white children to receive benefits. Furthermore; it was the existence of segregation laws that brought about this mental "underdevelopment". In conclusion, Black people, prior to Brown V. Board were mentally deficient due to their inability to sit with white children. Let that sink in. So what does this have to do with NYC 2019? Glad you asked. City-Journal has a piece on Richard [The blacks are too stupid to pass the test] Carranza "work" as NYC Schools Chancellor. In the transcript of the podcast we find the following:
Ray Domanico: I don't think the chancellor has been very explicit in explaining to us why this is an issue. The research itself is very complicated. There have been some studies which indicate that a mix of students in schools might lead to some benefit. But we're up against some pretty stark numbers in New York City. Over 40% of the New York City public school population is Hispanic and close to 30% is black. And there are more Asian students than whites in New York City; both of those groups come in around 15 to 16%. So if it were true that integration were a necessity to have good schools, we're going to run out of the white kids to move around. The other group of schools, though, that suggests that success can be attained without this approach would be the charter schools in New York City, which are doing better than the district-run public schools. There are close to 120,000 students in charter schools right now in New York City and the vast majority of them are black and Hispanic. These are schools of choice for families of color in the city who are seeking better alternatives. At the same time, there are private schools, particularly Catholic schools and other religious schools, that serve the black and Latino community. There are quite a few students enrolled there and those schools seem to be doing well.So non-white student make up 86% of the school population (including Asians). So by the logic of the 1954 court. Since segregation laws no longer exist black students should be doing just fine. But they apparently aren't. So if the laws weren't the reason (by looking at the evidence), then it must be the proximity to white students. Since there aren't many to sit next to then the failure of black students to perform [as well as white and Asian ones] must necessarily mean that blacks are incapable of performing in the absence of said students. If it is not the law, nor the lack of available white students to sit next to then we are left with one other conclusion: Blacks as a group are inherently incapable of keeping up with white or Asian students. So what of these charter schools? Steve Sailor recently wrote of the KIPP schools in NY. He linked to an article from the NYT:
Mr. Buery, who is black and grew up in East New York, Brooklyn, noticed that black and Hispanic students in KIPP schools were sometimes being disciplined too harshly by their white teachers. The network’s high schools had impressive academic results and graduation rates, but their students then struggled in college. And KIPP executives’ relationships with elected officials were fraying. [My underlines]How exactly do you have "impressive academic results and graduation rates" and students who "struggled in college"? Either the students aren't actually up to par or they are enrolling in schools where they are in way over their heads.
The college graduation rate for KIPP alumni is about 35 percent, above the national average for low-income students but not nearly as high as its founders had envisioned. After years of attempts to help KIPP alumni graduate, the network is proposing new solutions, which it hopes other schools will emulate.So the schools do a better job than the student's zoned school but they are still behind whatever benchmark the KIPP schools are using. There's a lot of effort going into externalizing the issue of academic performance of black students. It's wasting a lot of time. We all know the bright students when we interact with them. We all know the bright but lacking in impulse control students when we interact with them. We know the "not all that bright" when we interact with them. At some point "we" are going to have to come to reckon that the "not all that bright" are not going to suddenly become A students because some teacher was put through "bias training" or some other nonsense.
So since the US Women's soccer team has won (again) they are, well Rapinoe is, talking about equal pay for equal work. Unlike say women's tennis where the women literally play less than the men, this argument has at least the veneer of truth under it. The men play 90 minute regulation and so do the women. However; the men get paid more. Why is that? Here's Forbes on the matter:
As Dwight Jaynes pointed out four years ago after the U.S. women beat Japan to capture the World Cup in Vancouver, there is a big difference in the revenue available to pay the teams. The Women's World Cup brought in almost $73 million, of which the players got 13%. The 2010 men's World Cup in South Africa made almost $4 billion, of which 9% went to the players. The men still pull the World Cup money wagon. The men's World Cup in Russia generated over $6 billion in revenue, with the participating teams sharing $400 million, less than 7% of revenue. Meanwhile, the Women's World Cup is expected to earn $131 million for the full four-year cycle 2019-22 and dole out $30 million to the participating teams.So $6 billion in revenue vs. $131 million in revenue. If the women were paid at the same percentage of revenue as men then the women's pay would decrease. I'm pretty sure they don't want that. Why does this matter? Well, soccer is a business. A business pays it's workers what it can afford to (or in some cases, get away with). All computer programmers don't make the same money. The ones who work for financial firms who make billions are paid far more than a company that make far less. Similarly, in the past I have had black academics say how they refused to work at HBCUs because the pay was too low and "slavery is over". Somehow they think that the average HBCU which have very very small endowments and budgets have the same ability to pay as a public state or even Ivy league institution. But back to sports. I have a solution to this entire issue. I'm sure I'm not the first to think of it but here it is: For one season only, mix the men and women. So for track, men and women compete at the same races. For tennis, the men are paired off with whomever, male or female. In soccer you either mix genders on each team OR have the women's teams compete as "duos" for each country. That is, you may get to play the men's team or the women's team. So on and so forth with the winners advancing to the finals. What you will see is that with the possible exception of the soccer "mixed team" that all the women will be knocked out in the earlier rounds. This would end the entire "equal pay" discussion because it would be clear to the public that men and women are not equal in physical competition. And that's OK.
Tuesday, July 09, 2019
A play on the title of the previous post in regards to a not funny situation. One of the things about trying to be fair and neutral about incidents that are claimed to be "racist" is that sometimes you have to find for the alleged racist. Whether I like a security guard approaching a black guy who ducks in "his" hotel to make a call or not, the security guard is there for a reason and is doing his job. Whether I like having my large bills scanned six ways to Sunday by a store clerk or not, she's doing her job and if I had been passed a fake bill and passed that fake bill onto her and she failed to check it, she's fired. She's doing her job. But then there are events that there are no "neutral" explanations. Running up on someone who is minding his business and killing him is one of them.
Police say a man accused of fatally stabbing a 17-year-old in the throat at an Arizona convenience store told them he felt threatened because the teen had been listening to rap music.It wasn't the rap music. The largest consumers of rap music are white people. This was about race. Period.
Witnesses told police that the man, who's been identified as Michael Paul Adams, 27, walked up behind the teen, grabbed him and stabbed him in the neck, according to a probable cause statement obtained by CNN affiliate KPHO/KTVK.So unlike the guy who shot at the kid who knocked on his door asking for directions or the one who shot other black people playing loud music at a gas station, he can't even claim some sort of self-defense. Because walking up behind your victim and stabbing him in the neck is in no way "self-defense".
He said Al-Amin didn't do anything threatening but that the youth had been listening to rap music in his car in the parking lot, according to the statement. "Adams stated rap music makes him feel unsafe, because in the past he has been attacked by people (Blacks, Hispanics, and Native American) who listen to rap music. Adams further stated, people who listen to rap music are a threat to him and the community," the report said.I'm going to go out on a limb here and suggest that this person is not all that stable. Still, it stands as a warning to always be aware of your surroundings. Now as a link to the previous "When They See Us" post; isn't it a shame when people who are minding their own business, running, biking, walking, going to to store, get assaulted and/or killed by random people? Isn't it a SHAME? It is. That's why you can't be all "Central Park Five!" on the one hand and "this racist piece of sh*t" on the other. Random violence against people is wrong. Period.
Sunday, July 07, 2019
I haven't watched the documentary so I'm not going to comment on it as a work of art. I mention it because last week my mother brought up the movie and how sad it was that the boys went through so much in prison. I wasn't sympathetic and reminded her that her son, that would be me, was almost a victim of "wilding" that very same year. She only has me to take her to the supermarket due to a few factors I'll discuss at the end of this post. In regards to The Five one thing gets lost in the discussion: Even if they didn't beat AND rape the woman, they were up to no good in the park. They were not "innocent". Lets look at the facts:
“They picked me up by my neck and then by my feet,” he told jurors during the trial for Salaam, Santana and McCray. He said the attackers threw him to the ground and “kept kicking at me and hitting me with their fists.” In their statements, Wise, Richardson, Salaam, McCray and Lopez admitted to attacking Diaz and dragging his body off to the side.So they admitted to more than the assault on the jogger, who I'll agree got press because she was white.
Lopez and McCray told investigators that someone grabbed Diaz’s beer and poured it on him. McCray also said a kid named Tony stole Diaz’s food. Four others, according to a motion filed by the district attorney’s office, accused Montolvo, one of the teens arrested and charged, of eating Diaz’s food. Montolvo similarly told police that the group tried to jump a solo biker and then encountered the “bum.” “Everybody,” he said, began kicking him. Montolvo said he ate Diaz’s food while the others continued to beat Diaz.Again, They clearly weren't all that innocent.
Within 30 minutes of the assaults, several boys were stopped in the park and taken into custody, including Richardson and Santana. Between April 20 and 21, the team of detectives that questioned the Central Park Five also took video statements from Steven Lopez, Clarence Thomas, Lamont McCall, Jomo Smith and Michael Briscoe. Although these individuals said they were in the park with the Central Park Five and detailed other attacks, none of them confessed to sexually assaulting Meili. In addition to the Central Park Five, Lopez, Briscoe, Thomas, McCall, Antonio Montalvo, Orlando Escobar and Jermaine Robinson were arrested.Didn't know there were more than 5 people involved eh? You can read the rest of the piece if you have access to WSJ online. I won't further copy the text. But here's the personal reason why I'm not sympathetic: In the summer of 1989 I was playing handball in a queens park. At one point the people I was playing with all decided to leave. I was the only person left. Even the basketball courts were empty. I thought it was odd but continued to play. A guy I didn't know or recognize approached me and asked a question. I don't recall the exact question but whatever it was, it struck me as odd. He left and went towards a corner store where there were a few other people hanging around. I started to play again, but something told me to look around. I looked back in the direction that the guy went in and noticed that the small crowd at the corner store had grown in number. I paused and thought that perhaps I should leave like everyone else had because something was likely to go down. As I exited the handball court cage, I looked back and the crowd was running towards me at full tilt. I was about to get jumped. I am a runner. At the time a sprinter who untrained could run an 11 sec 100 meters (for reference that's a second off the women's world record prior to 2011) . I did just that and made it out the park. However; the mob had split up and were going to try to flank me as I was blocked by a major highway. I had only one way to get away from that crowd and that was to cross the highway against traffic. Fortunately there was a red light some 400 meters away that had just turned green so I was able to cross that road before cars reached me. However the mob didn't make it and I was able to get away. At my high school I witnessed a gang descend upon the school at the end of the day to beat up ONE person. ONE. So I have absolutely no sympathy for any person who participates in such behavior who later has "a hard time in life". Funny though. Nobody seems to be upset that some chick got beat up in Central Park. Nobody seems to be mad about the men who got beat up and robbed in the park. Like their victimization doesn't even count. Not to mention the untold numbers of people who had been beaten and robbed that never got media or police attention.
Friday, July 05, 2019
One may be shocked at how open socialists are able to run and get elected in the US. You may be shocked that such persons are in all areas of US society. You shouldn't be. Firstly because it's been a long time coming. Secondly; we have a generation of people who do not understand true poverty and despotism and have only seen the failures of the system under which they live. To people who have seen and lived through the 2008 meltdown and have massive student debt and fear retirement the following sounds very appealing: Now lets take this piece by piece: paid $538,257 million in taxes. The top 10% paid $1,240,010 million. The bottom 50% paid $43,863 million. So the whole "the rich don't pay [enough] taxes" really doesn't hold up. Oh and that's income taxes. If "the rich" decide to up and relocate, well there goes most of the taxes. How exactly will these plans be paid for then? Of course if you tax the rich to the point where they don't make any income, they won't be rich for long (bills don't go away because income has) and you're back to "how do you pay for it". Essentially the state cannot pay for all these programs without the taxes it collects. If it just prints money you get Venezuela where the money is useless. If the money is useless then none of the programs discussed above can be maintained. I mentioned the 2008 crash. A lot of people were left with a sour taste in their mouths when the banks got bailed out. Personally, I'm in the camp of "let 'em go down and let the chips fall where they may". But another look at this is that a large percent of the population has it's retirement savings in those same banks. Could you look your parents in the eye and say that their 401k should be obliterated in order to stand on principle? Would you crash your own 401K "on principle"? Real question. Indeed there are some very bad things going on in the FIRE segments which should be addressed. But they need addressing. No amount of "Russian dream" and "Stalin said this" is going to convince someone who's been cut by the jagged edges of the American economy that "The Socialists are bad". I'm not going to spend time writing what the "better argument" is because it would take too long. But the argument will need to be made. Freedom doesn't sound all that appealing when one is in deep debt, feels they've been taken advantage of and discriminated against.
Tuesday, July 02, 2019
This is Jussie.
Monday, July 01, 2019
I learned long ago that identity is a touchy subject for a lot of people so I tend to avoid the issue unless it is brought up in a scientific manner. The recent "outrage" about Kamala Harris not being an 'American Black" is of interest to me only because it highlights the current trends in identity politics. The original commentary (made by a black person) was that since Kamala's parents were an at least 1/2 black Jamaican and a "full" [apparenty Dravidian as opposed to Aryan] Indian, she was not an "American Black". "American Black" being those descended directly from the mostly (but not exclusively) West-Africans brought to America via the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade. The original poster is absolutely correct in that observation. Whether it should matter is an entirely different conversation. I don't think it does, at least as it relates to qualifications for office. Some are saying this is like the 'birther" conspiracy lodged at Obama. I don't agree with that analysis. Obama had a Kenyan father and a without a doubt American mother. The "questions" regarding his citizenship was based on his being born in Hawaii and it's alleged 'interesting" practices in determining the citizenship of those born there who may not be citizens. It also was about his ties to Indonesia and Islam. So the issue there was whether Obama was a citizen due to place of birth rather than his not having "American" parents. I can see someone saying that's 6 of one and half a dozen of the other. Sure. Again, not my particular interest. What is interesting, particularly in Kamala's case is that there was a time when a person of African descent in America would welcome the opportunity to be able to "exit blackness". The phrase "passing for white" is common in America. In the past if one could "breed up" and produce lighter and lighter children, they could eventually pass for white and avoid the negatives of being black in America. Almost every time you hear about a white person who "discovers" the proverbial "Negro in the family tree" that they didn't know about, you have a likely incident of some recent ancestor who saw themselves "out of the race". W.E.B. DuBois mentioned that there may become a time when African-Americans would be full of people who were not black at all. How would they identify. Indeed there are many people who are classified as African-American who are not black. I'm not talking about Rachel either. But Rachel D also illustrates a point. How did a white person with absolutely no black ancestors manage to "pass as black" for the length of time she did? Remember that the one drop rule only applies in America and more broadly in the Anglosphere. Outside of the Anglosphere, people who are not black by what I call the "across the street test"* are NOT considered black. There are all kinds of terms used for them. So if Rachel or Kamala OR Obama left America and was seen on the streets of Venezuela or Uganda, it is highly unlikely that they would be considered "black". Kamala would likely be identified as an Indian, Obama likely an Arab and Rachel, the white woman that she is. And it is likely that each one of them would gladly accept the non-black identities and the benefits that accrue to that. But turning back to Kamala, and Obama to an extent, they had political (and perhaps social) success because they chose to identify as black (using the USA One Drop Rule). So I think it interesting that was have this historical swing where blackness (or non-whiteness) is now a benefit rather than a hindrance; at least in politics. Indeed socially, being anything other than straight, male and white can accrue quite a few benefits and immunities. I know that's hard for some people to swallow but it's true. Personally, I'm hoping for the day that we can evaluate candidates on their records and positions rather than what they look like. I think there was someone else who had that idea. I'm sure there's a statue of him in DC. * The Across The Street test is the idea that if you can't tell a person is black from across the street then they aren't. This isn't a matter of mannerisms, clothes or hairstyles. All black people can be readily identified from a distance. In daylight, they contrast sharply with the light and at night they tend to "blend in" (this is where the whole can only see the eyes at night "joke" comes from). A corollary to that is the paper bag test that was used to exclude black persons from so-called "blue vein" societies. This test doesn't mean that the person is "white". That is an assumption made by many who adhere to the One Drop Rule where one is either black or white. "Failure" to pass the test simply means that one is at least a hybrid (mixed in common parlance). There is absolutely nothing at all wrong with being mixed. This is not a value judgment. Also, One can be "mixed" and still "pass" the Across The Street Test.