The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

A Serious Debate About Affirmative Action

Posted on | September 18, 2011 | 19 Comments

by Smitty

Althouse, emphasis original:

I know very well from long experience that it’s nearly impossible to have a rational, serious debate about affirmative action. But I am trying. I am trying to make this blog a place where we can do that.

Let’s start here: racism, and also sexism are mostly DNA-based decision making.

Let us also be generous, and admit that affirmative action, like labor unions, may have had historical value, and maybe that has expired.

One good course of action would be to decide that the 2008 election marks the end of the affirmative action era. Let’s just gradually let the Racism Industrial Complex die out by letting anti-discrimination laws work their course, and ignoring the hucksters like Jesse Jackson and company.

I’m not doubting that legitimate acts of racism do occur. But there will always be a diminishing returns point, and the Duke lacrosse team probably would agree we’ve passed it, where the cure is worse than the disease. Too much economic activity is wasted on diversity management and lawfare. If you want economic recovery, trim this fat.

For an example in the Formidable Ann’s neighborhood, see Daily Pundit.


19 Responses to “A Serious Debate About Affirmative Action”

  1. chuck coffer
    September 19th, 2011 @ 1:28 am

    While we’re doing all this admitting, let us remember that , as a group, the most racist people in American society are black people, and the least racist people on planet  earth as a group are American (non-leftist) white people.

    The justification for continuing so called affirmative action is based solely on the belief that black people are a race of retarded children who can’t get by without being helped by their genetic betters. It the most pernicious example of racism around  today. And its right there in broad daylight for everyone to see and for no one to say a damn thing about.

  2. Anonymous
    September 19th, 2011 @ 1:53 am

    Affirmative action was never morally supportable. Discrimination against or preference for an individual based on race or gender etc is wrong or it is not, period.
    Nearly as bad, it did it’s beneficiaries and society at least as much harm as it helped.

  3. Cdcoffer
    September 19th, 2011 @ 2:35 am

    Never say never. There was at least a valid argument for it at one time regardless of whether or not it was smart policy. (it never was)  Now it’s just openly racist. The worst part is how it’s accepted by black folks. Black people wanted to be treated as equals back in the 60’s. That was pretty universal back when, but now a sizable portion of the black folks in this country believe the same things about the nature of black people that the Klan does. 

    It makes me sick.

  4. Erica Marceau
    September 19th, 2011 @ 3:08 am

    It is sad how ingrained the idea of whites being racists are in the black community. What’s even worse is that it seems we can never prove we’re not racist.

    If we have black friends, we’re using them to prove we’re not racist. If we’ve never done or said anything racist, that’s only because of societal pressure which prevent us from being openly racist. If we say something less than complimentary about a black person, we’re racist even if the color of their skin had nothing to do with it.

    I don’t see how we can get out of this quagmire.

  5. Tom Callow
    September 19th, 2011 @ 4:24 am

    You have been monitoring some Black Studies classes I take it?
    That whole school of thought, is a way to get rich, just ask Jesse Jackon or his son or Al Sharpton. That is what they are trying to teach in those classes, the language of getting over. No sense even arguing with that type of person and they have no real friends.
    My round haired friends are just as human as any other skin shade people I have known.
    The get-over types get all the news, because regular black people are too busy living, working, raising the kids and having fun to get much of that limelight that gets you into the “news”.
    We got the same thing over here in white crackerville goin on, a lot of young punks, get-over types trying to make things their way.
    It’ll get better soon as someone with some sense gets into a leadership position.  ala  Alan West  Alfonso Rachel Kevin Jackson or the many people of color that are conservatives in governments. They will get the message out. There is a whole black conservative movement that is afoot but the make believe media does not let the country see it.

  6. The Wondering Jew
    September 19th, 2011 @ 6:33 am

    Thanks for this piece, Smitty. 

    And let’s not forget to note that we couldn’t possibly exaggerate the moral cowardice shown by most Republican leaders on this issue– since it is impossible to exaggerate infinity.

  7. Chris Smith
    September 19th, 2011 @ 7:06 am

    Again, bickering and arguing over ‘oo out-raced ‘oo isn’t the point.
    Breath in, breath out, move on. –J.Buffet

  8. Chris Smith
    September 19th, 2011 @ 7:07 am

    I don’t disagree, but the point was to offer a fig leaf to the other side.

  9. Chris Smith
    September 19th, 2011 @ 7:08 am

    The military, as a whole, belies the whole Raaaaacism Industrial Complex.

  10. Chris Smith
    September 19th, 2011 @ 7:09 am

    Republican leaders have been Ruling Class Progressives for too long.

  11. Matt Lewis
    September 19th, 2011 @ 10:13 am

    Indeed.  The past is the past.  The point is to move beyond it.  Otherwise we end up like the Balkans, fighting wars that started centuries or millennia ago.

  12. Anamika
    September 19th, 2011 @ 11:49 am

    Smitty, it is social momentum (as internalized in us) i am mainly addressing….

    Afaict even in the enlightened western society, equality of opportunity does not exist, as between men and women, and as between whites and minorities.

    Our different positions on American politics in general here may be paralleled in the debate about affirmative action. One school of thought has it as an item of faith that social inequities today result from past injustices which are still carried forth in subtler ways, so blacks and women, among others, still need to be offered some compensating factor in today’s employment market to balance the unfair distribution of opportunities in education in their earlier years, glass ceilings, etc. The other school says this is patronizing and holds them back as much as anything. Since people like (Uncle) Clarence Thomas are among the advocates of the second school, i tend to align with the first, but i can understand why you find that outlook disempowering. Perhaps your long Christian experience has had some effect on your views, not that there’s anything wrong with that.

    No easy answers afaict.

  13. smitty
    September 19th, 2011 @ 12:53 pm

    For so many, the answer is ‘more government’, irrespective of the question.
    On affirmative action, this has bred a patronage system.
    I oppose that patronage system with every fiber of my being.
    So do the likes of Clarence Thomas, Allen West, and Condi Rice.

  14. Anonymous
    September 19th, 2011 @ 3:33 pm

    Poison ivy would be more appropriate.

  15. Anonymous
    September 19th, 2011 @ 3:43 pm

    Surprisingly it favors the immoral argument.

  16. Anonymous
    September 19th, 2011 @ 4:04 pm

    You’re using “surprisingly” in the same way the economic news is “unexpectedly” sucky, right?

  17. Anonymous
    September 19th, 2011 @ 4:06 pm

    Another excellent post, Smitty.  We’ll have to put you some other hellhole for a while if this is what it takes for you to keep cranking out the good stuff.

    Of course, if your home is in a blue state, that qualifies.

  18. Anonymous
    September 19th, 2011 @ 5:25 pm

    Correct sir, I refuse to use sarc tags, if my sarcasm isn’t perfectly obvious that means I need to up my game.

  19. willem
    September 19th, 2011 @ 8:11 pm

    bdwilcox posted this important find:

    “… Thomas Jefferson spoke from the grave when, in the drafting of the Declaration of Independence, he very purposely erased ‘subject’ and replaced it with ‘citizen’, proving the terms were NOT simply interchangeable and were very different in meaning and connotation.

    From the article (


    “That’s what Thomas Jefferson first wrote in an early draft of the Declaration of Independence to describe the people of the 13 colonies.

    But in a moment when history took a sharp turn, Jefferson sought quite methodically to expunge the word, to wipe it out of existence and write over it. Many words were crossed out and replaced in the draft, but only one was obliterated.

    Over the smudge, Jefferson then wrote the word “citizens.”

    No longer subjects to the crown, the colonists became something different: a people whose allegiance was to one another, not to a faraway monarch.”


    HERE we find a defining, cardinal operating premise of our Constitution: “… a people whose allegiance was to one another …”

    In more technical terms, the remarkable invention of our Constitution, Republic and form of Government created the first-ever “hysteresis of mutualism” in complex institutional form.
    Why would I think this on point for this thread? To properly sort through the dissembled and deconstructed rhetoric that is now normalized in our politics today, we need to go back and walk through the fundamentals and pivotal moments in the history of Science, society and governance.

    Feudal Europe roiled and quaked for decades because of the direct impact of the successful American Revolution. After the failed French Revolution, there were a series of failed efforts in other European nations to replace Feudal Royalism with a form of Mutualism consistent with the American experiment.

    It may help to think of this crises in terms of “software” — that Feudal Royalism and Mutualism were as two competing and elementally incompatible forms of OS.

    One of the great intellectual questions of the 19th Century involved the existential and scientific examination of what form of governance of man was modeled by nature, and what was the natural and proper form of human governance. One of the great debates involved”The Ant” as the defining model for human organization, provided by G_d as an example to man.

    The eruption of dynamic Mutualism in the new world was catastrophic to the moral authority of the Feudal Royalists. Now there was a working model. A written model. Among themselves, they faced the juxtaposition that they were the predator class; parasitic; evil and cruel, mere rogues in the eyes of natural law.

    Mutualism had stripped them of the previously unchallenged moral authority they had assumed for themselves and had enjoyed for generations. There was no competition prior; the only competition was between themselves. Then came the Declaration of Independence, Constitution and the impossible revolution succeeding that turned European society on its head, filling the streets and fields with magical tales of a new way.

    POINT: Hegel wrote the master apologia that became the controlling counterpoint. From Hegelian intellectuals sprang a myriad of opportunistic and condescending justifications for the continuation of Feudal Royalism; i.e., so that the hapless common volk being ruled by their betters may live happy, simple and common lives in the shadows of their protectors and benefactors, and not be burdened with the concerns of those with superior breeding and blood.

    Hegel gave birth to a misapplication of science to create a faux science of optimal human government. The name of that science: “Socialism” — a touted science of the Hegelian movement and Victorian Era.

    But Hegelian scientific governance was triadic; there were three pillars of “proven science” on which Hegelianism’s justification for systematic tyranny were founded, and therefrom, where the justification of Feudal Royalism was “scientifically assured.”

    The trinity of Hegelian scientism: Socialism, Phrenology and Eugenics.

    The central operating premise: “The perfection of progressive man under socialism.” No person could be left alone. All must be perfected and rendered to their proper station. By means of science and experts, human society was to be perfected and therefore benevolent authoritarianism was as morally required as it was scientifically necessary. All the experts, of course, agreed.

    From the Communists to the Nazi’s to the 151 nations with official political parties of the Socialist International today led by Greece; from the systematic compulsory indoctrination of Prussian public education to its wholesale importatation by Peabody Coal and cohorts to become the American education system of today; from the murderous Pol Pot to the magical thinking of Barack Obama, from the Behavioralism of B.F. Skinner to the Scientific Management of Fredrick Taylor, and Adolf Hitler, and Joseph Stalin, and Mao, Saddam and the Baath, the Grand Mufti and the PLO, they are all devotees of the same fatal conceit. Our “soft science” universities are stewed in it. What do you think took the place of Classical Liberalism and Metaphysics. Why do you think dialectics and reductionism replaced metaphysics and reason; why forensics and debate replaced rhetoric and elocution?

    By 1947 the adverse deterioration of scholarship in the classical academy have become so disturbing noted internationally acclaimed scholars began to organize to push back against a culture of academic racketeering noted scientist Karl Popper coined as “scientism” and the corruptions of reduction ism and dialectics that were as anti-scholarship as they were anti-scientific. Out of this alarm the Mont Pelerin Society was formed.

    So murderous is Hegelian scientific government, that esteemed social scientists Dr. Rudolf Rummel was able to clearly demonstrate that, during the 20th Century, 6 times more citizens were killed by their “utopian” experimentalizing Hegelian-based governments than were killed in all wars of the same century. I say this not to sensationalize but give evidence as to the dangerous and murderous nature of this “perfecting” compulsion to de-mutualize and subjectify fellow citizens so their lives may be sacrificed as best determined by experts to ensure the greater good will be served.

    Our uniquely American traditions of Mutualism have been under siege since the transplantation of the Prussian education system and the resulting foundations that were funded by europhile industralists who hope to change the American creed and society so an obedient working class could be formed to fit the requirements of Victorian era heavy industry. It has run on autopilot since, and by any reasonable measure also has it run amok.

    Today we find our modern federal government actively conducting policy trampling individual citizens and forcing our entire society to supplicate itself to the entirely false and discredited science of Phrenology.

    There are certainly differences in creed. But the matter of “color” is as ignorant of science as the bigots who concocted the Jim Crow laws — laws that history will show were european-sponsored productivity enhancing efforts arising from the British monopoly on the American cotton export market. We will learn that Jim Crow was part of the ultimate funding and formation of large machine-like plantations and the “scientific optimization” of “the negro” by means of the latest European sciences which soon became formalized as Phrenology and Eugenics under Socialism as the modern ideal scientific goverment. Then came Lenin, then Hitler, then Mao, et. al.

    This AA mess came from somewhere. It is a hideous and shameful history. It is a EUROPEAN history, a EUROPEAN corruption of the American ideal.

    And who today is obsessed with Race and racial economy? The latter-day Hegelians, that’s who. And few even realize that’s what they are practicing.

    Race is itself a false scientific construct. Let Maxine Waters or Barack Obama explain how many drops of what blood makes you what color?

    Let’s see the scientifically determined pantone chart that has only one “white.”

    In pre-colonial and frontier terms, the slang of red, white, black were terms of creed. Look at the requirements for elective federal office. Therein are written precise and unilateral discriminations applying to all applicants. Not one of those eligibility discriminations is based on race, creed, sex or religion. Not one. These descriminations against federal office eligibility are based on age, residency, tenure of citizenship and governmental jurisdiction at birth.

    Our education system and institutional orthodoxy have been dominated by Hegelianism for the last 40 years. We have been co-opted into the Hegelian meme. Our society has become so riven with these bizarre and obsolete 19th Century scientisms that we see them as normal.

    But these scientisms are not normal. They are abnormal. False. Corrupt. They feed the rooting of inestimable fraud, waste and insider dealings that ravage our institutions, economy and society today.

    Our innocent children are taught these false concepts, cleaved of their personhood and reduced; stripped of their individual god-given identity.

    They are served-up as a tribute to institutional sycophants serving a false aristocracy of depraved moralism rooted in utopian experimentalism and a fatal conceit that history shows has rendered government more murderous to its citizenry than war itself.

    Sorry for the length. The history and operative terminology have been so comprehensively deconstructed it is difficult to address the topic with ordinary brevity. Perhaps that is why the malignancy these issues have caused our society for so many decades has been able to persist under our very noses, frustrating our collective ability to correct the pathology we sense; a pathos we cannot effectively put into words without collapsing into useless partisan cliche. We need to abandon the rhetoric they have crippled us with. We need to return to rigorous accuracy and faithful discourse to eschew the duplicity and passive voice of the postmodern progressive Hegelian.

    Let us come together in defense of Mutualism to remove the disorders of pluralism, phrenology and eugenics from our midst.

    AA was bad enough, but now the Eugenics officially comes in the sheep’s clothing of Obamacare.

    The rebirth of Mutualism may be the key to transforming the sweeping corruption faced today; the key to returning our faltering nation to its honorable and historic founding purpose.