Sunday, June 09, 2013

Cornucopia's Treasures of Irony

It was not my intention to do a post based on that treasure trove known as Geoffrey's blog, but I was wasting time on the computer and thought I'd take a look there, not having done so in a while. 

Now, it isn't really possible to visit his blog and not find something goofy.  It's almost like it's his purpose in life to provide fodder.  But this post has a special charm.  The great joy is in the title alone and the lone comment posted by one for whom the luster of Geoffrey's intellect is now diminished.

While we're at it, you'll also find the usual nonsensical understanding of right-wing sentiment regarding abortion.  First, that we have any confusion regarding what the laws say about it, and secondly, that it is our side that is confused about what abortion is and what a fetus is.  We have no problems understanding the moral bankruptcy of people like Geoffrey who try to pretend there is some line that separates the unborn from the rest of humanity.  The only real confusion on the right is whether positions like Geoffrey's should be cause for laughter or abject sorrow.

Sunday, June 02, 2013

The Cornucopia Delivers

I haven't been over to Geoffrey's blog lately, thereby reducing his readership by almost half, but that doesn't necessarily deprive us of good stuff. 

It all began with a post at Dan Trabue's blog wherein he charges Stan with "whining" in a post at his blog.  The extreme irony of Dan accusing Stan of "whining" in regards to the issue of which he speaks is so obviously lost on Dan, that I plan to point it out for him in a later post.  But for now, suffice to say it is where Geoffrey makes his own special delivery of his usual good stuff.

And it comes within this paragraph from one of his last comments on the thread (which is within the last dozen or so comments of the thread for anyone who cares to read it firsthand).  I emboldened the "good stuff" in question:

"That legalizing same-sex marriage makes it binding upon everyone? Last time I checked the country was chock-full of people, some of them working at the Heritage Foundation, who think that people of other races are inherently inferior in some way. That doesn't mean the Civil Rights and Voting Rights laws aren't still in force. Passing a law, even nearly fifty years ago, hasn't changes at least some minds. I'm quite sure there will be folks like you who refuse to admit that a married gay couple is really married."

Naturally, I questioned him on this wacky assertion:

" Really." says I.  "When did your last check occur, and who at the Heritage Foundation did you find that held people of other races as inherently inferior in some way?"

So then Geoffie provides this link to the Daily Beast with the laughable suggestion that it is not a liberal source.

Now, it's bad enough that he tries to trash Heritage by citing this article and the article's many weak links to weaker validations of their charges (Heritage's assessment of the economic impact of the current "comprehensive immigration reform" proposal is the only one available at this time as far as I can tell), but he's really keen on the accusations leveled at one of the authors of the analysis, one Jason Richwine.  It seems that the Washington Post "revealed" the "racist ideology" of Richwine by referring to a thesis of his while at Harvard.  This would be humorous if it wasn't so downright deceitful.  But as I told Geoff,  reporting a charge of racism does not equate to actually finding racism.  To that, Geoffie responded in this way:

"If you took some time to read, you'd notice that (a) the whole thesis is racist (Hispanics are stupid because they're Hispanics); and (b) it was so blatant the Heritage Foundation fired the guy.

So, obviously, I'm just repeating a charge of racism rather than actually finding out what's going on, unlike you who can't even be bothered to Google the story in the first place."

Note point (a).  As I've begun reading the thesis, I have yet to find anything that suggests Richwine is arguing that Hispanics are stupid because they're Hispanic.  Only about 30-40 pages into it, I've found that Richwine makes specific comments that indicate no racism is behind his work.  He states categorically that regardless of how one group compares to another, every individual should always be treated as an individual.  He even presents an example of an early study on IQ that was racially motivated to both illustrate the distinction, as well as to expose the flaws of methodology.  So Geoffie is lying here.  Then he lies again with point (b).  Heritage accepted Richwine's resignation because of the liberal whining about racism, not because his thesis was indeed "blatantly" racist.

Michelle Malkin writes about the situation here, and shows much better journalistic integrity in doing so.  She presents the three Harvard big shots who signed off on Richwine's thesis:

"Richwine’s dissertation committee at Harvard included George Borjas, Robert W. Scrivner Professor of Economics and Social Policy. The Cuban-born scholar received his PhD in economics from Columbia. He is an award-winning labor economist, National Bureau of Economic Research research associate, and author of countless books, including a widely used labor economics textbook now in its sixth edition.

Richard J. Zeckhauser, the Frank P. Ramsey Professor of Political Economy at JFK, also signed off on Richwine’s dissertation. Zeckhauser earned a PhD in economics from Harvard. He belongs to the Econometric Society, the American Academy of Sciences, and the Institute of Medicine (National Academy of Sciences).

The final member of the committee that approved Richwine’s “racist” thesis is Christopher Jencks, the Malcolm Wiener Professor of Social Policy at Harvard’s JFK School. He is a renowned left-wing academic who has taught at Harvard, Northwestern, the University of Chicago, and the University of California, Santa Barbara. He edited the liberal New Republic magazine in the 1960s and has written several scholarly books tackling poverty, economic inequality, affirmative action, welfare reform, and yes, racial differences (The Black White Test Score Gap)."

All in all, what Geoffrey and the leftist whiners lambasting Heritage and Richwine are doing is typical of their ilk.  Simply because one dares to compare races or ethnic groups, by golly, racism is afoot!  This is weak sauce and childishness.  It is also extreme cowardice to cower from the prospect of making such comparisons as if no true benefit can be possible.  

So imagine for a moment that some liberal hero decides to prove that there are no differences between the races or ethnic groups.  He wants to show up the Richwines of the world and intently reviews all Richwine did, runs tests, researches minutia and goes well beyond Richwine, hitting the subject from every possible angle.  Imagine he comes up with exactly the same results as Richwine.  Does that make the liberal hero a racist villain?  Should he lose his job and/or standing in the public square?  Should he resign?

Here's the thing:  how can anyone get upset to find that when comparing races or ethnic groups they might not score equally?  Where's the problem here?  Does it seem impossible that the most intelligent and wisest might be from the group that scored the worst?  I don't see how it's possible that all groups could be absolutely equal in abilities.  One group might have the strongest, another the smartest, another the fastest.  It's what we do with this information that matters.  In the case of Richwine, he proposed merely that we consider IQ in immigration policy.  He gives reasons why that might be beneficial.  And while his work suggests that Hispanics demonstrate the least potential for assimilation, I haven't found any suggestion that no Hispanics can assimilate and be a welcome addition to our population.

So many insist that our immigration situation is in dire need of improvement.  Richwine has one possible way to do that.  And whether or not one agrees with his findings, one needs to be able to refute them before dismissing them out of hand.  If the findings are accurate, then they deserve consideration in any discussion of immigration reform.  It isn't racist no matter how people like Geoffrey and some politicians want it to be.