July 6, 2013

How immigration can solve all the world's problems

From the comments to "The Extended Stay American Dream:"
 Anononymous said... 
"everyone born here would have to leave. Then they would be replaced with immigrants." 
Excellent plan. Here's my implementation: 
Part the first: 
All third-world population to move to USA, supervised by the UN. All, no exceptions. America becomes an exponential-GDP economists-utopia with a population of billions of ad-revenue generators. NY-LA greater metropolitan area. World GDP doubles. Trillion dollar bills on the sidewalk. Third world poverty ended. Sally Struthers retires. 
Part the second: 
The non-vibrant portion of USA is banished to the now-vacated lands. The ultimate liberal-revenge fantasy. Now they can experience first-hand the misery they inflicted on those people by not allowing them to immigrate here. 
They can see first-hand life with the civil-wars, the gang-rapes, child-prostitution, drug-cartels, brutal dictatorships, AIDs. They will see what effect an accident of birth can have on your life. O Fortuna velut luna statu variabilis. 
Then we will build a wall around USA so that the non-vibrant can never come back. They will try to climb the wall and beg for permission to immigrate, but their pleas will fall on deaf ears. See how it feels, hah. (Also, no one can leave either.) 
The low population density will really make for a miserable GDP. It will be like living in a world-wide Australia, shudder. 
I'm torn as to whether infrastructure left behind should be left intact or sabotaged. Immigrants are so industrious they won't need it.

Indian says whites should not call anybody "Caucasian"

In the long run, the government's definitions of who gets money and prizes for being a favored race or ethnicity and who belongs to the legally disfavored groups who have to ante up the money and prizes is hugely important. 

For example, the government's effort to compensate the descendants of American slaves by defining everybody who wants to assert any sub-Saharan ancestry as a protected race is the fundamental reason the non-force of nature Barack Obama is in the White House. Similarly, the Nixon Administration's creation of a Hispanic ethnicity out of people of Mexican, Puerto Rican, and Cuban descent is the reason the media has anointed Marco Rubio as Presidential Timber: the growth of the Mexican-American population makes the Cuban Rubio a natural!

Not surprisingly, there have been rumblings among the currently legally unprivileged as they strategize how to bail out of the white/Caucasian category. Arab groups, for example, have been asking to be excused from being white and instead get their own category so they can sue when disparate impact is not in their favor. The end game, which we are still a long way from, of course, is to leave Mitt Romney as the last remaining white person in America.

(When it comes to being legally privileged, I'm a Big Tent guy. I want as many people stuffed into the unprivileged tent with me to share the burden. But that's a pretty rare insight these days.)

Golfer Vijay Singh
"Caucasian" as a synonym for white is particularly troublesome to people who don't want to get left holding the fuzzy end of the racial privilege lollipop. Why? Because it is so geographically expansive. Physical anthropologists generally saw the Caucasoid race as extending to include North Africa, the Near East, and most of South Asia. 

In 1982, however, immigrant Indian and Pakistani businessmen, looking for low interest SBA loans and affirmative action in government contracting, talked the Reagan Administration into reclassifying them from white/Caucasian to Asian/Oriental, even though grouping Indians with Chinese rather than with Afghans makes little sense from the standpoint of physical, genetic, linguistic, or cultural anthropology. (The Himalayas really are a major barrier.) In America over the last generation or two, being nonwhite pays.

Here's a half-Indian New York Times reporter explaining, in effect, why the word that raises questions about her father's side of the family's legal privileges should be forgotten forever.
Has ‘Caucasian’ Lost Its Meaning?
Published: July 6, 2013

AS a racial classification, the term Caucasian has many flaws, dating as it does from a time when the study of race was based on skull measurements and travel diaries.

As opposed to today, when the study of race is based on assertions of political power in imposing intellectual taboos.
It has long been entirely unmoored from its geographical reference point, the Caucasus region.

Actually, the Caucasus Mountains are near the center of the traditional range of the Caucasoid race. People from the Caucasus region, such as Armenians, were always considered white in America for legal purposes.
 Even now, the word gives discussions of race a weird technocratic gravitas, as when the police insist that you step out of your “vehicle” instead of your car. ... 

I associate the word "Caucasian" with the LAPD from watching Adam 12 in the 1960s. It worked well for police radio talk "See the man, male Caucasian" especially in low light situations. Joseph Wambaugh's LAPD cop novels over the last 40 years have had a running theme of almost always having at least one character who is sort of a white European and sort of not.
The Supreme Court, which can be more colloquial, has used the term in only 64 cases, including a pair from the 1920s that reveal its limitations. In one, the court ruled that a Japanese man could not become a citizen because, although he may have been light-skinned, he was not Caucasian. In the other, an Indian was told that he could not become a citizen because, although he may have been technically Caucasian, he was certainly not white.
Ramzan Kadyrov throwing money
(A similar debate erupted more recently when the Tsarnaev brothers, believed to be responsible for the Boston Marathon bombing, were revealed to be Muslims from the Caucasus.) ... 
There is another reason to use it, said Jennifer L. Hochschild, a professor of government and African-American studies at Harvard. “The court, or some clever clerk, doesn’t really want to use the word white in part because roughly half of Hispanics consider themselves white.”

It's almost as if white Americans could use Hispanic racism to divide and conquer, when we all know the duty of whites is to unite-and-submit to The Others.
There are a number of terms that refer to various degrees of blackness, both current and out of favor: African-American, mulatto, Negro, colored, octaroon.

They are out of favor because lighter-skinned elites like the mulatto Barack Obama saw it was in his career interest to be "black" instead of something more accurate, as he demonstrates at some length in Dreams from My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance.
... IN the South, I was often asked about my ethnic origins, and I had a ready answer. “My father is from India,” I would recite, phrasing it in such a way as to avoid being mistaken for an American Indian. “And my mom is white.” Almost invariably, if I was speaking to black people, they would nod with understanding. If I was speaking to white people, I would get a puzzled look. “What kind of white?” they would ask. Only when I explained the Norwegian, Scottish and German mix of my ancestry would I get the nod. 
I theorized that this was because blacks understood “white” as a category, both historical and contemporary — a coherent group that wielded power and excluded others. Whites, I believed, were less comfortable with that notion. 
But Matthew Pratt Guterl, the author of “The Color of Race in America, 1900-1940,” had a different take. “They’re trying to trace your genealogy and figure out what your qualities are,” he said. “They’re looking in your face, they’re looking in the slope of your nose, the shape of your brow. There’s an effort to discern the truth of the matter, because all whitenesses are not equal.” In other words, they weren’t rejecting the category, they were policing its boundaries. 
Such racial boundaries have increasingly been called into question in the debate over affirmative action, once regarded as a form of restitution to descendants of slaves, but now complicated by all sorts of questions about who, exactly, is being helped. “What if some of them aren’t poor, what if some of them don’t have American parentage, what if some of them are really stupid?” Ms. Painter, the historian, asked. “There’s all kinds of characteristics that we stuff into race without looking, and then they pop out and we think, ‘I can’t deal with that.’ ” 
Doubtless, this society will continue to classify people by race for some time to come. And as we lumber toward justice, some of those classifications remain useful, even separate from other factors like economic class. Caucasian, though? Not so much. 
Shaila Dewan is an economics reporter for The New York Times.

We must lumber toward justice by continuing to provide Ms. Dewan's relatives on the paternal side taxpayer subsidized loans.

And ever since the Reagan Administration did such a huge favor for Indians by removing them from the official definition of white / Caucasian, they've been voting Republican ever since out of gratitude.

Oh, wait, the opposite appears to have happened.

No doubt, we can count on Republican deep thinkers like Kurt Bardella to figure all this out.

Inbred Rednecks v. Inbred Pakistanis

Google has 95,000 pages on "inbred rednecks" v. 242 on "inbred Pakistanis." 

First cousins who marry increase the risk of giving birth to a baby with birth defects including defects affecting the heart or lungs, a British study suggests. 
Researchers looked at birth anomalies in Bradford in the north of England where there is a large Pakistani community. In that community there's a high level of consanguineous marriage — matrimony between blood relatives. ...
 The risk of birth defects was double that in those of white British origin. ...

Of the more than a total of 11,000 babies in the study, 386 or 3 per cent had a congenital anomaly, such as heart and lung defects, cleft palates and Down syndrome. The children were born between 2007 and 2011.

These are just major birth defects. These poor kids probably have lots of minor defects, too, and learning disabilities that aren't obvious until school age.
 Less than one per cent of babies of white British origin were born to first cousins compared with 38 per cent in the Pakistani group.

Births to second cousins are probably not insignificant either, although the fraction of "shared alleles" is only 1/4th as high in offspring of second cousin marriages. (This is assuming de novo cousin marriages -- if your ancestors have been cousin marrying for a long time, your mileage may vary.)

Keep in mind that first cousin marriage is not just a cultural ideal in large parts of the world, it's a key engine of immigration fraud. An arranged marriage of an English-born girl to her cousin in the Old Country creates a visa for a member of the extended family, opening doors to more visas under "family reunification."

A dozen years or so ago, the horrible anti-immigration rightwing Danish government passed a law not giving a visa to a foreigner if his Danish-born bride is under age 24.

Kurt Bardella: Embodiment of the GOP Brain Trust

Here's a long, mildly amusing article about Kurt Bardella, a staffer for GOP congressman Darrell Issa. Bardella is representative of the kind of heavyweights who extrude the Republican conventional wisdom.

The Extended Stay American Dream

Commenters Rohan Swee and Dave Pinsen kick around the current mindset:
"I, too, have long been perplexed by these questions. A "nation of immigrants" should be mostly immigrants, no?" 
It's time to take it to the next level then, and make America truly a nation of immigrants. For starters, everyone born here would have to leave. Then they would be replaced with immigrants. And when the immigrants wanted to have kids, they would have to leave the country and start their families elsewhere, lest their kids be born here and miss out on the magic of immigrating here. 
So America would be a place where people came, worked for a few years, then moved on. Sort of like one of those extended stay business hotels. The United States of Extended Stay America.

Sounds like a plan!

There's a lot of money to be made off of constant churn. These days, the question that's in the forefront of everbody's thoughts and prayers is: "Is it good for the billionaires?" Anybody who isn't worried about the welfare of our precious billionairely resources is A) Not currently a billionaire himself, B) Obviously, never going to be a billionaire, and therefore C) A loser.

My favorite book of 2011 was Homesickness: An American History by Susan J. Matt. This academic gypsy historian, who finally earned tenure at the third college she was employed by, draws an insightful distinction between homesickness, which was indulged during the 19th Century but is derided these days because it's too particularist to make much money off of (you're homesick for Palmdale the way it was in 1981, when it seemed like everybody's dad was an aerospace engineer? Sorry, can't do much for you), versus nostalgia (you liked the Go-Gos when you were growing up Palmdale in 1981? Well, that's why we licensed "We've Got the Beat" for Target's Back-to-School-Days ads!)

July 4, 2013

"The Vulnerability of Minority Homeowners in the Housing Boom and Bust"

Here's an important new academic paper on the minority mortgage meltdown that backs up many of my insights of 2008 about the role of George W. Bush's 2002-2004 push for increasing minority homeownership by removing regulatory impediments (such as down payment requirements):
The Vulnerability of Minority Homeowners in the Housing Boom and Bust 
Patrick Bayer, Duke University and NBER 
Fernando Ferreira, The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, and NBER 
Stephen L Ross, University of Connecticut 
This paper examines mortgage outcomes for a large, representative sample of individual home purchases and refinances linked to credit scores in seven major US markets in the recent housing boom and bust. Among those with similar credit scores, black and Hispanic homeowners had much higher rates of delinquency and default in the downturn. These differences are not readily explained by the likelihood of receiving a subprime loan or by differential exposure to local shocks in the housing and labor market and are especially pronounced for loans originated near the peak of the boom. Our findings suggest that those black and Hispanic homeowners drawn into the market near the peak were especially vulnerable to adverse economic shocks and raise serious concerns about homeownership as a mechanism for reducing racial disparities in wealth. 
1. Introduction 
Homeownership has long been viewed as an important mechanism for building wealth and, hence, the substantially lower ownership rates of minority households may be a serious impediment to reducing racial wealth disparities. 
Motivated by this perspective, a number of public policy programs have an explicit goal of encouraging homeownership and many politicians have embraced it as a means of upwards mobility. President George W. Bush famously said in a 2004 speech that “We're creating... an ownership society in this country, where more Americans than ever will be able to open up their door where they live and say, welcome to my house, welcome to my piece of property”. With this view in mind, the expansion of housing credit in the United States from late 1990s to mid-2000s was largely cheered and homeownership by households of all races and ethnicities reached record high rates in the mid- 2000s.
As the subsequent housing and economic crises developed, however, the risks of homeownership became increasingly obvious. Delinquency and foreclosure rates rose sharply, especially in minority and low-income neighborhoods, and many households not only lost substantial housing wealth but also faced the prospect of lower credit scores (higher borrowing costs) for years to come. A comparison of mortgage delinquencies and foreclosures between 2005 and 2009 provides a particularly stark picture of the differential impact of the downturn by race. 
Figures 1 and 2 shows that while all homeowners had negligible 90-day delinquency and default rates in 2005 for our sample of seven major markets,

A rising tide lifts all boats
large racial differences had emerged by 2009. More than 1 in 10 black and Hispanic homeowners in our sample had a delinquent mortgage by 2009, compared to 1 in 25 for white households, and a similar pattern held for foreclosure rates. The differential impact of the downturn highlights a key concern with homeownership as a means for reducing racial wealth disparities. Namely, if the downside risks associated with owning a home are distributed unequally by race, increased rates of delinquency and default may ultimately exacerbate rather than diminish the racial wealth gap. 

There are huge differences in median or even 75th percentile wealth between whites versus blacks or Hispanics. Whites have been making more money for more generations, and they tend to spend proportionately less of their incomes on cars and fiestas. Since they tend to be related to other white people, they also are more likely to have a private safety net of family members who can help them out in a financial crisis so that they don't default.

But, lenders are not supposed to notice this. Fortunately, down payment requirements provided a race-neutral way to put your money where your mouth is. However, George W. Bush's war on down payment requirements in 2002-2004 as racist barriers to his Ownership Society neutered this.
In this paper, we examine mortgage outcomes by race during the last housing cycle in a diverse set of U.S. housing markets. The main goal of our analysis is to distinguish among a number of potential explanations for the higher rates of delinquency and default by minority homeowners in the housing market bust, with the ultimate aim of providing a better understanding of the benefits and risks associated with homeownership as a vehicle for building wealth. 
While researchers have documented the greater exposure of minority households to income and health shocks, much less is known about the differential impact of credit and financial shocks, especially in housing markets. The literature suggests that subprime lending has been an important factor in explaining rising foreclosure rates in low income and minority neighborhoods. Here we take a different approach by proposing an important explanation for high rates of negative credit market outcomes for minority homeowners during the crisis, i.e., the selection of high-risk households into the housing market close to the peak of the housing cycle. 
We explain this mechanism in the context of a simple model of credit markets in which borrowers are heterogeneous in both their risk of having adverse economic events and in their ability to manage adverse events should they occur. We show that an expansion in credit availability selects borrowers into the market that face a higher risk of adverse events, leading to an increase in default rates among borrowers unable to manage adverse events in any subsequent market downturn. To the extent that wealth and liquidity gaps leave minority households especially vulnerable to negative economic shocks, our model implies that those minority households drawn into homeownership following a major expansion of credit are especially likely to default in a subsequent downturn.
Our empirical results show that black and Hispanic households are more likely to become delinquent and default on their mortgages than white households with similar credit scores, house type, neighborhood, and loan characteristics, especially for mortgages originated for new home purchases in 2005-06. 
One prominent, potential explanation for higher delinquency and foreclosure rates is that minority borrowers were concentrated in the subprime sector of the market, where they faced higher interest rates and more onerous loan terms than white borrowers with equivalent credit history and circumstances. Since 2004, the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act data has contained an indicator for high cost (or rate-spread) loans that is often considered a proxy for subprime loans. Yet, while having a high-cost loan is a strong predictor of subsequent delinquency and default, controlling for this variable has only a minor impact on the estimated racial and ethnic differences in future credit market outcomes. These differences in delinquency and default are also relatively unaffected by the inclusion of lender and neighborhood fixed effects, and additional controls for the influence of subprime lending. Thus, strikingly, most of the observed differences in credit market outcomes for minority homeowners are not related to differential access to lenders, types of loans, or any observable factor that might have been used to price the mortgages in the first place.

In other words, stereotypical racial/ethnic  prejudices turned out to offer incremental insight, especially in the 2005-2006 environment of very, very low down payments.
We next consider whether racial and ethnic differences in loan performance might be attributable to differential exposure to the housing market collapse and associated recession. To capture shocks associated with both the labor and housing market, we include a series of controls that measure variation in the severity of the crisis: (i) tract and county by year fixed effects, (ii) individual indicators of a household’s equity position in each year, (iii) the interaction of equity position and county by year unemployment rates, and (iv) race-specific measures of unemployment rates by county and year. The addition of these controls has little impact on estimated differences between Hispanic and white homeowners in either the new purchase or refinance sample. And, while the inclusion of these controls does reduce the estimated differences in delinquencies and foreclosures between black and white homeowners to some extent, substantial differences remain, especially in the home purchase sample. Thus, while increased exposure to labor and housing market shocks explains some of the increased delinquency and default rate for minority homeowners, a substantial unexplained gap remains.

A big question is how much did the recession cause mortgage troubles versus how much did mortgage troubles cause the recession. More specifically, mortgage troubles in 2007-2008 in Sand States like California, Arizona, Nevada, and Florida did more to cause the national recession of 2008-2009 than vice-versa, according to the laws of time and space.
As a final test of the predictions of our mortgage market model following a major expansion of credit, we examine whether the timing of the selection into the housing market has an effect over and above the other mechanisms proposed in the literature. We find that racial and ethnic differences are largest for home purchase originations in 2006, the peak of the housing boom according to the Case-Shiller price index.

Peak = scraping bottom of the barrel.
Importantly, the larger differences in 2006 remain even after controlling for the subsequent higher rates of negative equity for borrowers who purchased near the peak of the housing market. Along similar lines, we also examine racial and ethnic differences for a subsample of refinance mortgages that were originally purchased between 1998 and 2008 and subsequently refinanced in our sample period. For this subsample, racial and ethnic differences in foreclosure are tiny for homes that were originally purchased from 1998 to 2003, but substantial for homeowners who originally purchased their homes between 2004 and 2007 – i.e., those drawn into the market at the peak of the credit expansion. 
Taken together, our results provide strong evidence that minority households drawn into homeownership late in the recent housing market boom were especially vulnerable in the subsequent downturn in ways that are not explained by (i) exposure to different lenders or loans, (ii) the performance of local labor and housing markets, and (iii) the differences in equity position. These results call into question the idea of encouraging homeownership as a general mechanism for reducing racial disparities in wealth. To the extent that increases in homeownership are driven by the entry of especially vulnerable households into the owner- occupied market, such a push may backfire, leaving vulnerable households in a difficult financial situation and adversely affecting their wealth and credit-worthiness for years.

This is enough of a direct shot across the bow of the entire race-mortgage sub-industry of activists and wheeler-dealer lenders and developers that Mr. and Mrs. Sandler's Center for Responsible Lending issued a denunciatory response here. Up until 2007, a lot of rich people and powerful politicians earned a lot of money and/or votes by fighting racism by inducing  blacks and, increasingly, Hispanics into debt peonage.

Not surprisingly, despite the mounting number of academic studies demonstrating this, it hasn't been a popular topic in the media.

La Liberté éclairant le monde

La Liberté éclairant le monde (Liberty Enlightening the World) is a gift from the people of France to the U.S.A. to recognize what the French saw as their co-developers of national liberty.
 The statue is of a robed female figure representing Libertas, the Roman goddess of freedom, who bears a torch and a tabula ansata (a tablet evoking the law) upon which is inscribed the date of the American Declaration of Independence, July 4, 1776. A broken chain lies at her feet.

Symbolizing abolition.

It didn't have much to do with immigration. The message to the world was that America and France had liberated their own countries and you should admire this statue, then be inspired to go home and liberate your own country.

Not surprisingly, the French never felt oppressed enough in their nice country to immigrate to Amercia in vast numbers. So, Franco Americans tend to be a rather random collection of worthies who filtered in in small number. The Wikipedia  on "French-American" article lists these representatives Franco-Americans.

Not bad, if a pretty random set of Americans.

Fourth of July Panhandlemania

This is the day when we celebrate such antiquated concepts such as self-rule and independence from global empire.

As an independent writer, I get to have a lot more fun than all the tame hacks whose jobs come with, say, health insurance. But, I'm directly dependent upon you, my readers, to help me pay some bills.

So, this is the Day 2 of my summer fundraising drive.

First, you can make a tax deductible contribution via VDARE by clicking here.

Second, you can make a non-tax deductible contribution by credit card via WePay by clicking here

Third: You can mail a non-tax deductible donation to:

Steve Sailer
P.O Box 4142
Valley Village, CA 91607-4142


July 3, 2013

Zuckerberg's latest Cheap Labor Lobby ad: "Decides the Golden Tool"

FWD.us (a.k.a., the National Association for the Advancement of Billionaire People) is at it again. Mark Zuckerberg's 30 second spot is called "Emma" and it features, you guessed it, the Statue of Liberty along with a rewrite of Emma Lazarus's schmaltzy poem to wedge in some new jargon, like "And give me the influencers." I didn't hear the term "disrupters" in there, but hopefully that word will be in the 60 second version.

Here's the automatic transcript on Youtube of the narration:

0:02 give me do it right your poorer huddled masses yearning to breathe
0:09 and kids who need the influences
0:11 entertainers
0:14 talent that is searching for a purpose
The Golden Tool
0:18 dole's dedicated to her
0:20 send all of these
0:22 brown this going to mean
0:25 agnes time and decides the golden tool

I couldn't have said it better myself.

In evaluating this ad, keep in mind that there are days, even weeks, when Zuckerberg's net worth drops from 11 digits to only 10 digits, so show some mercy to poor Zuck. 

A Fourth of July sermon from Slate

Some good patriotic reading from Slate:
The Real Reason Silicon Valley Tech Workers Are Fighting Immigration Reform 
By Will Oremus | Posted Wednesday, July 3, 2013, at 3:10 PM

Companies like Google are starving for top engineers, but some American tech workers want to limit visas for highly skilled foreign workers. 
Just in time for the national holiday, The Verge today has a story about how immigration reform could harm rank-and-file American information technology workers. “Is Silicon Valley’s immigration agenda gutting the tech industry’s middle class?”, the tech blog wants to know. Subtract “Silicon Valley” and “tech industry” from the headline and you have the age-old canard about furriners stealing Amurricans’ rightful jobs. 

As we all know, Google's American software engineers are semi-literate buffoons who are too stupid to deserve to be paid well enough to afford to buy a house with a yard in an extremely expensive region. Why should they get paid enough to marry and have children? Don't we all know that the American Dream of random foreigners must take precedence over the xenophobic greed of mere Americans?
In this case, the furriners are not migrant farm workers but highly skilled tech workers entering the country on H-1B visas. The immigration bill that recently passed the Senate would expand the national cap on these visas from 85,000 to 180,000—or rather, “all the way up to 180,000,” as The Verge’s Ben Popper objectively phrases it. Silicon Valley companies

I.e., billionaires, who are, by definition, our moral superiors.
are all for the move, since it would bring in tens of thousands of ace engineers at a time when demand for top talent far exceeds the domestic supply.

At the level of salaries the billionaires would prefer to pay their workers so they can become even bigger billionaires. As Thomas Jefferson explained, that's the American Dream: for a few guys to get incredibly rich and have all other Americans reduced to debt peonage under them.
But it doesn’t sit well with some of Silicon Valley’s rank and file, who happen to like holding a monopoly on IT jobs in the world’s tech capital.

The horror of Americans trying to hold something of a monopoly on jobs in America at Microsoft, Google, Apple, Facebook, and Amazon, whose billionaire owners would never, ever think about trying to exert any monopoly power to enrich themselves! If this kind of redneck populist thinking isn't squashed flat right now, these vicious American nativists might even start asking Apple and Microsoft to pay their corporate income taxes!
They have all sorts of justifications for their anti-immigration stance, but the most galling is when they put it in terms of their concern for the plight of the poor, exploited foreign workers who are taking their jobs, as they do throughout The Verge’s piece. 
Oh yes, those poor, exploited, highly skilled foreign workers. Popper did not go so far as to actually talk to any of these foreign workers, as far as I can tell. Perhaps they were unable to return his calls because they were locked in Google’s secret “foreigners-only” basement sweatshop. But he did repeatedly quote one Kim Berry, a coder for the California Department of Health and spokesman for something called the Programmer’s Guild, who compares H-1B tech workers’ status to “indentured servitude.”  

I, Will Oremus, point and sputter at the phrase "indentured servitude," so therefore I win!

Of course foreigners should be brought in and put under the control of rich men like Mark Zuckerberg and Bill Gates. That's how America was built! Cotton didn't pick itself, you know ...

Try not to forget all the lonely decades that Mark Zuckerberg sweated away to nurture an idea that only he, out of all the people in entire world, could ever have come up with. Where would we be without Zuck's breakthrough: Friendster for Harvard students?

Do you realize there are days, sometimes even weeks, when Zuckerberg's net worth dips from 11 figures to just 10 figures? Have you no pity?
My favorite quote from Berry, though, is the one where he unintentionally lays bare the hypocrisy at the root of his own argument: "American workers are being passed over in favor of foreign workers who make far less money, and politicians seem oblivious to our plight." That’s right: “our plight.” Not the plight of the foreign workers who make far less money. Berry’s real concern is the plight of the American IT workers who make far more money. Won’t anyone think of them?

Who do these American citizens think they are? Voters? The government needs to fix that quick by electing a new people. Why shouldn't American politicians be oblivious to American voters? Haven't you ever been to the Aspen Ideas Festival? If you had only been worthy of being invited, you'd know that billionaires are much more classy than (ugh) voters.
As twisted as that is, it might at least make some logical sense if it were true that foreign tech workers were being underpaid. In fact, as Popper duly notes, a Brookings study found that H1-B workers in the tech industry make 26 percent more than their American counterparts. 

Obviously, billionaires want more H1-B visas so they can pay foreigners more money than Americans would cost for the same work. It's simple logic, but I'm not a billionaire genius, so don't ask me to explain it.
At the same time, it is true that some American graduates in science and engineering are being passed over for jobs. But it isn’t because there are foreigners will do those jobs for less money. It’s because there are foreigners who will do them better.

Or at lower price. In either case, it's all good for Billionaire-Americans.
That's why it isn’t the top American programmers who are threatened by the competition. As an Andressen Horowitz recruiter points out in Popper's story, it’s the ones who don’t have the skills that today’s tech companies need.

God forbid that the billionaires should pay to train American workers, especially senile ones over age 39. What next? Are these xenophobes then going to start suggesting that the billionaires might consider hiring American women to program? What insanity will they propose after that? That Silicon Valley hire a few Mexican-Americans and African-Americans?

If Americans want jobs programming, all they have to do is be programming geniuses like Marc Andreessen. If they aren't cut out to be billionaires, then, who needs Americans? What have your fellow countrymen ever done for you or yours? What did their ancestors ever do for your ancestors?
Historically, even the country’s least-skilled IT workers could count on cushy jobs with good pay. That isn’t because their work is inherently more valuable than that of, say, teachers. It’s because they didn’t have much competition. That’s changing, and they’re upset about it, and that’s understandable. But they should recognize that limiting H-1B visas will only hurt Silicon Valley in the long run.

As we all know, Silicon Valley is barely hanging on by its fingernails. Without increasing H-1B visas, all the tech billionaires will up and flee to India. Tumbleweeds will be blowing down Sand Hill Road in Palo Alto within three years.

It's just like how Congress drove Hollywood out of business by not granting H-1B visas for a massive influx of foreign gaffers, key grips, and best boys. Forcing Hollywood to pay market wages to American workers is why the last BMW dealership on Sunset Blvd. just folded up. That's why this weekend the big release at American movie theatres is Bollywood's The Lone Rajah. We can't have that happen to Silicon Valley, too!
And they should stop pretending that they’re serving anyone but themselves by fighting to keep foreigners out.

Themselves and their posterity. That's some kind of anti-American hate crime, isn't it?

Seriously, think about the men who fought 150 years ago today at Gettysburg. The two sides in Pickett's Charge had different opinions on what country they should be fighting for -- the Union or Old Virginia. But they didn't doubt that they and their countrymen were, to some degree, in it together.

What would any of them have thought of the unexamined assumptions behind this representative piece of Establishment punditry?

Could Lincoln have averted the Civil War?

My new column at Taki's today, the 150th Anniversary of the Fall of Vicksburg and Pickett's Charge at Gettysburg, offers a multipart theory on how Lincoln could have better managed the Secession crisis of 1860-1861. A glance at a map (see the post below), shows that the key was to keep Virginia, the northernmost state to secede, in the Union, just as Kentucky and all the other slave states at the same latitude as Virginia stayed in the Union. 

One approach would have been to conciliate leading Virginians with offers of positions of responsibility in the Union, such as Lincoln's offer to Robert E. Lee -- but proactively, not after Virginia had voted, somewhat narrowly, to secede.

Another part is Secretary of State William Seward's April 1, 1861 plan to galvanize patriotic pro-Union sentiment by creating a foreign policy crisis over Spain's and France's efforts to use the secession crisis to violate the Monroe Doctrine in the Dominican Republic and Mexico, respectively.

Would Seward's plan have worked externally? Would the Spanish and French have backed down without fighting a trans-Atlantic war?

Possibly. The Spanish cared far more about keeping Cuba than regaining fever-ridden Santo Domingo. They immediately abandoned the Caribbean island upon the end of the American Civil War in 1865. Similarly, in 1866 French emperor Napoleon III chose Franco-American amity and pulled the plug on his Mexican adventure.

Would Seward's plan have worked domestically?

The psychology was not hopeless. I think this is the closest analogous situation: in the United Kingdom in the summer of 1914, civil war loomed as Irish Protestant officers, the heart of the British military since the Duke of Wellington (just as Southern officers were the heart of the U.S. Army), resigned their commissions to return home to take up arms against the Liberal government offering Home Rule to Irish Catholics. Suddenly, however, the Great War flared up and the Irish Protestant officers instantly returned and fought with tremendous loyalty against Germany.

Of course, the cost in this particular case to the United Kingdom was immensely high. But there's a big difference between fighting a land war with Germany on the Western Front and blustering about the Monroe Doctrine to dissuade Spain and France from undertaking what proved for them to be ill-fated misadventures in the New World.

Read the whole thing there.

Here's the full text of William Seward's endlessly reviled April 1, 1861 memo to Lincoln, 12 days before the start of the Civil War:


First. We are at the end of a month's administration, and yet without a policy either domestic or foreign.

Second. This, however, is not culpable, and it has even been unavoidable. The presence of the Senate, with the need to meet applications for patronage, have prevented attention to other and more grave matters.

Third. But further delay to adopt and prosecute our policies for both domestic and foreign affairs would not only bring scandal on the administration, but danger upon the country.

Fourth. To do this we must dismiss the applicants for office. But how? I suggest that we make the local appointments forthwith, leaving foreign or general ones for ulterior and occasional action.

Fifth. The policy at home. I am aware that my views are singular, and perhaps not sufficiently explained. My system is built upon this idea as a ruling one, namely, that we must

Change The Question Before The Public From One Upon Slavery, Or About Slavery, for a question upon UNION Or Disunion:

In other words, from what would be regarded as a party question, to one of patriotism or union.

The occupation or evacuation of Fort Sumter, although not in fact a slavery or a party question, is so regarded. Witness the temper manifested by the Republicans in the free states, and even by the Union men in the South.

I would therefore terminate it as a safe means for changing the issue. I deem it fortunate that the last administration created the necessity.

For the rest, I would simultaneously defend and reenforce all the ports in the gulf, and have the navy recalled from foreign stations to be prepared for a blockade. Put the island of Key West under martial law.

This will raise distinctly the question of union or disunion. I would maintain every fort and possession in the South.

For Foreign Nations

I would demand explanations from Spain and France, categorically, at once.

I would seek explanations from Great Britain and Russia, and send agents into Canada, Mexico, and Central America to rouse a vigorous continental spirit of independence on this continent against European intervention.

And, if satisfactory explanations are not received from Spain and France,

Would convene Congress and declare war against them.

But whatever policy we adopt, there must be an energetic prosecution of it.

For this purpose it must be somebody's business to pursue and direct it incessantly.

Either the President must do it himself, and be all the while active in it, or

Devolve it on some member of his cabinet. Once adopted, debates on it must end, and all agree and abide.

It is not in my especial province;

But I neither seek to evade nor assume responsibility.

July 2, 2013

Sailer: "Lincoln's Folly"

When slave states seceded, if ever. (Click on map to enlarge.) You can see three distinct tiers from south to north, with Virginia (which still included WV in 1861) the great anomaly, the only state to secede north of 36'30". If Virginia doesn't secede in April 1861, then neither do VA's tag-along followers NC, TN, and AR.
From my new Taki's Magazine column:
Perhaps to celebrate the Battle of Gettysburg’s 150th anniversary, liberal Washington Post columnist Harold Meyerson announced on June 25th that, in effect, it’s too bad Pickett’s Charge of July 3, 1863 failed. 
From Meyerson’s “Start the border fence in Norfolk, Va.”: 
Until that day, though, if the federal government wants to build a fence that keeps the United States safe from the dangers of lower wages and poverty and their attendant ills — and the all-round fruitcakery of the right-wing white South — it should build that fence from Norfolk to Dallas. There’s nothing wrong with a fence, so long as you put it in the right place. 
This is another manifestation of what John Derbyshire calls the Cold Civil War: “good old American sectionalism—two big groups of white people who can’t stand the sight of each other.” 
One reason that America’s internal animosities have become so virulent is that since the Soviet Empire’s collapse two dozen years ago, we lack worthy external foes.

I go on to explain how a more experienced Lincoln could have headed off the Civil War in 1860-61.

Read the whole thing there.

By the way, here's a long article documenting the bizarre disdain of most Civil War historians for Secretary of State William Seward's brilliant April 1, 1861 memo to Lincoln (which Lincoln tragically brushed aside) explaining the most plausible plan anybody came up with at that late date for heading off the Civil War.

And it's not like Seward was some weirdo crank outsider. He was a great man. While Lincoln wasted time during those crucial weeks, Seward came up with a plan that might have worked, or at least bought time.

Perhaps it's just the déformation professionnelle of Civil War historians to be irrationally averse  to anybody and anything that might have made their profession needless, even if it would have saved 750,000 American lives.

Has a single billionaire spoken out against Schumer-Rubio?

According to Forbes, there are a little over 400 billionaires in the U.S. Many (such as the Koch Brothers, Mark Zuckerberg, Bill Gates, Michael Bloomberg, Rupert Murdoch, and George Soros) are actively using their money, influence, and power to promote more immigration. (And this is not to mention foreign billionaires, such as Carlos Slim, financial savior of the New York Times, who profits exorbitantly from phone calls between Mexican immigrants in America and their friends and family in his country.)

Here's a question -- in the latest round of controversy over immigration, has a single billionaire spoken up publicly against expanding immigration?

I'm aware of a tech billionaire who quietly gave some moderate support to immigration restriction a half dozen years ago, but I'm drawing blanks on any since 2010. Surely, here in the land of the free and the home of the brave, there must be one lone billionaire who felt able to speak out against his class's self-interest. Right?

Were constantly reading in the mainstream media about how Michigan eye doctor John Tanton is this malign supervillain personally standing athwart immigration reform, shouting "Stop," but, come on ... an eye doctor in Michigan? That's it? If one billionaire spent as much on immigration restriction as several billionaires have spent on their favorite college football teams' weight rooms, we might have something not too far off from a level playing field in the debate. 

You might almost suspect that the billionaires are waging class war on the citizens of America.

As Swift would say if he were alive today, "When a true patriot appears, you can know him by this sign: that all the scoundrels are in a confederacy against him."

Summer iSteve Panhandling Drive

My Spring panhandling campaign was an encouraging success. I appreciate and am motivated by your feedback (especially feedback in the form of money). The boost to my energy that your support induces has helped me raise my traffic stats by about 20-25 percent since the last fundraiser began.

So, I'm going to run a donation drive each quarter of the year. 

First, you can make a tax deductible contribution via VDARE by clicking here.

Second, you can make a non-tax deductible contribution by credit card via WePay by clicking here

Third: You can mail a non-tax deductible donation to:

Steve Sailer
P.O Box 4142
Valley Village, CA 91607-4142


Tom Wolfe explains the Zimmerman case

One of my relatively few specific successes in the field of Awareness Raising over the last decade has been how much more cognizant a small fraction of the thinking public has become that Tom Wolfe's 1987 bestseller The Bonfire of the Vanities foreshadows many of the racial brouhahas that have consumed the press in the 26 years since. Judge Richard A. Posner's mid-1990s reassessment of Bonfire praised Wolfe's "prophetic insight (the sort of thing we attribute to Kafka)." Wolfe's phrase "Great White Defendant" is now up to 95,600 pages on Google.

With the current Bonfire-style trial of George Zimmerman in the Trayvon Martin shooting turning into an unsurprising train wreck, it's worth giving you excerpts of a key section from Bonfire (pp. 105-108) that provides the template for understanding much of what you see on the nightly news over the decades:

The language is NSFW.

Three Bronx assistant District Attorneys -- Ray Andriutti, Jimmy Caughey, and Larry Kramer (the indirect narrator) -- discuss elected head D.A. Abe Weiss's current obsession with the Moore case, in which an unemployed corporate executive in the nice Riverdale suburb of the Bronx shot his mother-in-law.
An assistant D.A. in Major Offenses has started calling Abe Weiss "Captain Ahab," and now they all did. Weiss was notorious in his obsession for publicity, even among a breed, the district attorney, that was publicity-mad by nature. ...
[Kramer:] "Why was Weiss interested?" 
[Caughey:] "Well, the guy's white, he's got some money, he lives in a big house in Riverdale. It looks at first like maybe he's gonna fake an accidental shooting." 
"Is that possible?" 
"Naw. Fucking guy's one a my boys. He's your basic Irish who made good, but he's still a Harp. He's drowning in remorse. You'd think he shot his own mother, he feels so fucking guilty. Right now he'd confess to anything. Bernie could sit him in front of the video camera and clean up every homicide in the Bronx for the past five years. Naw, it's a piece a shit, but it looked good at first."
Kramer and Andriutti contemplated this piece a shit without needing any amplification. Every assistant D.A. in the Bronx, from the youngest Italian just out of St. John's Law School to the oldest Irish bureau chief, who would be somebody like Bernie Fitzgibbon, who was forty-two, shared Captain Ahab's mania for the Great White Defendant. For a start, it was not pleasant to go through life telling yourself, "What I do for a living is, I pack blacks and Latins off to jail." Kramer had been raised as a liberal. In Jewish families like his, liberalism came with the Similac and the Mott's apple juice and the Instamatic and Daddy's grins in the evening. And even the Italians, like Ray Andriutti, and the Irish, like Jimmy Caughey, who were not exactly burdened with liberalism by their parents, couldn't help but be affected by the mental atmosphere of the law schools, where, for one thing, there were so many Jewish faculty members. By the time you finished law school in the New York area, it was, well ... impolite! ... on the ordinary social level ... to go around making jokes about the yoms. It wasn't that it was morally wrong ... It was that it was in bad taste. So it made the boys uneasy, this eternal prosecution of the blacks and Latins.
Not that they weren't guilty. One thing Kramer had learned within two weeks as an assistant D.A. in the Bronx was that 95 percent of the defendants who got as far as the indictment stage, perhaps 98 percent, were truly guilty. The caseload was so overwhelming, you didn't waste time trying to bring the marginal cases forward, unless the press was on your back. They hauled in guilt by the ton, the blue-and-orange vans out there on Walton Avenue. But the poor bastards behind the wire mesh barely deserved the term criminal if by criminal you had in mind the romantic notion of someone who has a goal and seeks to achieve it through some desperate way outside the law. No, they were simple-minded incompetents, most of them, and they did unbelievably stupid, vile things. 
Kramer looked at Andriutti and Caughey, sitting there with their mighty thighs akimbo. He felt superior to them. He was a graduate of the Columbia Law School, and they were both graduates of St. John's, widely known as the law school for the also-rans of college academic competition. And he was Jewish. Very early in life he had picked up the knowledge that the Italians and the Irish were animals. The Italians were pigs, and the Irish were mules or goats. He couldn't remember if his parents had actually used any such terms or not, but they got the idea across very clearly. To his parents, New York City -- New York? hell, the whole U.S., the whole world! -- was a drama called The Jews Confront the Goyim, and the goyim were animals. And so what was he doing here with these animals? A Jew in the Homicide Bureau was a rare thing. The Homicide Bureau was the elite corps of the District Attorney's Office, the D.A.'s Marines, because homicide was the most serious of all crimes. An assistant D.A. in Homicide had to be able to go out on the street to the crime scenes at all hours, night and day, and be a real commando and rub shoulders with the police and know how to confront defendants and witnesses and intimidate them when the time came, and these were likely to be the lowest, grimmest, scurviest defendants and witnesses in the history of criminal justice. For fifty years, at least, maybe longer, Homicide had been an Irish enclave, although recently the Italians had made their way into it. The Irish had given Homicide their stamp. The Irish were stone courageous. Even when it was insane not to, they never stepped back. Andriutti had been right, or half right. Kramer didn't want to be Italian, but he did want to be Irish, and so did Ray Andriutti, the dumb fuck. Yes, they were animals! The goyim were animals, and Kramer was proud to be among the animals, in the Homicide Bureau. ....
Here they were ... and here he was, and where was he going? What were these cases he was handling? Pieces of shit! Garbage collection ... Arthur Rivera. Arthur Rivera and another drug dealer get into an argument over an order of pizza at a social club and pull knives, and Arthur says, "Let's put the weapons down and fight man to man." And they do, whereupon Arthur pulls out a second knife and stabs the other fellow in the chest and kills him ... Jimmy Dollard. Jimmy Dollard and his closest pal, Otis Blakemore, and three other black guys are drinking and taking cocaine and playing a game called the dozens, in which the idea is to see how outrageously you can insult the other fellow, and Blakemore is doing an inspired number on Jimmy, and Jimmy pulls out a revolver and shoots him through the heart and then collapse on the table, sobbing and saying, "My man! My man Stan! I shot my man Stan!" ... And the case of Herbert 92X --
... The press couldn't even see these cases. It was just poor people killing poor people. To prosecute such cases was to be part of the garbage collection service, necessary and honorable, plodding and anonymous. 
Captain Ahab wasn't so ridiculous, after all. Press coverage! Ray and Jimmy could laugh all they wanted, but Weiss had made sure the entire city knew his name. Weiss had an election coming up, and the Bronx was 70 percent black and Latin, and he was going to make sure the name Abe Weiss was pumped out to them on every channel that existed. He might not do much else, but he was going to do that. 

Prosecution of Zimmerman increasingly farcical

From the New York Times:
Prosecutors in Zimmerman Trial Ask Jury to Disregard Comments 
SANFORD, Fla. — Prosecutors in the second-degree murder trial of George Zimmerman scrambled Tuesday to undo damage to their case by one of their leading witnesses, a Sanford police officer who interviewed the defendant hours after he fatally shot Trayvon Martin. 
The witness, Officer Chris Serino, had testified under cross-examination on Monday afternoon that Mr. Zimmerman seemed to be telling the truth when he said he had fired his gun in self-defense. The officer’s remarks made for a dramatic moment in the trial — and clearly benefited the defense — but drew no immediate objection from the prosecutors. The court then recessed for the day. 
But early on Tuesday, citing case law, the prosecution successfully argued that Officer Serino’s comments about Mr. Zimmerman’s truthfulness should be disregarded by the jury. The judge then instructed the jurors, who are being sequestered during the trial, to ignore the officer’s statement—nearly 17 hours after he made it. 
Officer Serino’s testimony, in the second week of the trial in Seminole County Court, was the latest setback for prosecutors, whose witnesses have repeatedly helped bolster the defense’s case.

The prosecutions seems to be getting farther away from "beyond a reasonable doubt" with each witness it calls.

Are we ever going to see the admission that this whole PaS case (pardon my Bonfire jargon) should be cause for an agonizing reappraisal of the racial delusions and racial animus of those who hold the Megaphone?

Cornel West: Black is the old gay

It’s been a great week for gay activists, but Dr. Cornel West is not happy. As the postmodern professor par excellence explained to radio host Tavis Smiley last Sunday, the advances made by gays and lesbians mean that “we black folk are just being pushed to the back of the bus”: 
The irony of the age of Obama in which black folks found themselves pushed to the back, [and] our gay brothers and lesbian sisters more and more pushed to the center. 

Can't say Rachel Jeantel and Trayvon Martin contributed much to making white liberals like blacks more than all those bright-eyed showtunes singing gays on Glee.

July 1, 2013

Who donates the most to colleges?

One of the interesting subjects that is kept under wraps is this: top colleges have had their admissions and alumni offices get together to carefully model what kind of high school applicants are likely to donate the most money to their alma maters in the long run. But, that information is treated like the President's nuclear football, so I can only guess based on anecdotal information about huge donors. 

As far as I can tell from reading articles about 9-digit donors is that a one word description for many of the really big donors is jock: white, male, straight, athletic, competitive, fraternity-joining, and pretty conservative. 

To be a big donor it also helps to have legacy ties to the college: either your parents or your children should go to the college.

For example, I first got interested in this subject reading about the first $100 million donor to USC. He was the shotputter on the USC track team, son of two USC grads, then started a steel fabrication company in Fresno.

For example, today we learn:
Billionaire Silicon Valley real estate developer John Arrillaga recently wrote Stanford University a $150 million check—the single largest donation from a living individual in the school’s history.
Arrillaga’s 9-figure donation is the latest in a long line of donations to the school, which began with a 2-figure donation shortly after he graduated in 1960, according to a letter published today from Arrillaga’s daughter, Laura Arrillaga-Andreessen.

She's the wife of Netscape web browser developer Marc Andreesen.
Arrillaga, now 76, grew up in poor in the Los Angeles suburb of Inglewood and arrived at Stanford in 1955 on a basketball scholarship. He worked six jobs in college to pay for living expenses, his daughter wrote. 

The name "Arrillaga" is of Basque origin from the Franco-Spanish border region. If Basques are Hispanic, then he is one of three Hispanics on the Forbes 400, along with a Miami Cuban real estate developer and Arte Moreno, the billboard king who is a genuine Mexican-American.
The Arrillaga name graces eight buildings at Stanford—the Arrillaga Alumni Center, the Arrillaga Center for Sports and Recreation, the Arrillaga Dining Service Building, the Arrillaga Family Dining Commons, the Arrillaga Family Sports Center, the Arrillaga Gymnasium and Weight Room, the Arrillaga Outdoor Education and Recreation Center and the Arrillaga Plaza.

These are not, you'll notice, the most highbrow buildings at Stanford. A lot of vast fortunes have been made by Stanford grads in all sorts of esoteric ways, but Arrillaga's billions have come in just about the lowest tech field: real estate development. This is not uncommon that the biggest donations often come from the alumni in the more regular guy fields.
... In 2006, Arrillaga made a $100 million donation to the school, which at the time was the single largest individual donation ever made to Stanford. In Nov. 2011, Dorothy and Robert King (who coincidentally also graduated from Stanford in 1960) topped that donation by writing the school a $150 million check.

Or, perhaps it's not a coincidence, at least not in Arrillaga's mind, that the two classmates have been competing to give the most humongous donation in Stanford history.
The Wall Street Journal reports Arrillaga’s most recent donation was slightly bigger than the Kings’ donation, edging them out to reclaim the top donor spot.

Can't stop competing, can he?

Athletics pays off for some colleges in donations. Laura Arrillaga-Andreesen writes:
Athletics creates strong family bonds. My father attended every basketball game, tennis match and softball or baseball game in which my brother, John Jr., and I played as kids. Today, he rarely misses a Stanford home basketball or football game ...

If you are wondering why Stanford is so good in football recently, it has a lot to do with its new facilities, which attract top athletes. Many of the buildings were paid for by Arrillaga:
As part of making his first nine-figure gift to Stanford, he led the construction of the university's state-of-the-art football stadium – completed under-budget and in just 42 weeks' time. He made high-level decisions on stadium design and landscaping while paying attention to detail, overseeing 24-hour construction crews, picking out every tree, selecting seat materials and tasting countless hot dogs before choosing which brand to serve. 

Arrillaga is also a fraternity boy, Delta Tau Delta. 

And he married a Stanford girl. His daughter Laura has four separate degrees from Stanford:
Laura Arrillaga-Andreessen, BA '92, MBA '97, MA '98, MA '99, is a lecturer in philanthropy at Stanford Graduate School of Business, a lecturer in public policy at Stanford, and founder and chairman of the Stanford Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society.

This legacy thing has worked out well for Stanford:
In fact, my father's philanthropy was a primary inspiration behind the $27.5 million my husband, Marc Andreessen, and I gave to Stanford Hospital in 2006 to fund a new Emergency Department.

In general, it appears that the biggest donors to colleges are conservatives.

Today in Witch-Sniffing News

Kathy Shaidle points to this news story:
King was caught and sentenced to 25 years in prison after the [Paula] Deen robbery and a separate robbery. He lives in Brooklyn, New York, now and when we spoke to him, he actually broke down in tears. He blames himself for Paula Deen’s troubles. 
“I really feel for her,” King said. “She’s being persecuted because of that one little mistake in her judgment. She was acting out of anger.” 
King had 13 prior convictions for robbery before he pointed a gun at Paula Deen. He says he’s turned his life around. 
But the Paula Deen empire is crashing down. More of her business partners are severing ties with her. JCPenney and Sears are the latest to jump ship.

Being a crime victim is racist.

Profiling: George Zimmerman v. Michael Bloomberg

Perhaps the most shocking allegation against George Zimmerman has been that he "profiled" Trayvon Martin, as can be seen by the 103,000,000 Google hits that search generates.

The mayor of New York City, billionaire Michael Bloomberg is similarly accused of having his 44,000-officer New York Police Department racially profile black and Hispanic youths (a.k.a., "the right people") to be stopped and frisked. But the decade-or-so long Bloomberg profiling controversy, such as it is, has generated almost 100,000,000 fewer web pages than the Zimmerman profiling controversy. (And many of those pages seem to be admiring "profiles" of Bloomberg rather than damning him over "profiling.")
And rightly so. After all, this Bloomberg person is just some provincial nobody with a crimefighting complex. He's not George Zimmerman. Let's keep our priorities straight, people.

June 30, 2013

The 2016 Undernews

You can use Google Prompts to find out what questions the public is asking. For example, just type in "Is " followed by the name of a celebrity. Let's find out what the Undernews is about 2016 Presidential Timbers. (Sorry about getting screenshots to display as different sizes.)



Boring! How can anybody take you seriously as Presidential Timber, Cory, if you can't generate any better Undernews than vague questions about your white girlfriend in Brooklyn? Check out the #1 questions for Hillary and Biden, Mayor Booker, and then get to work.

There are also "Does " prompts, such as

150th Anniversary of Gettysburg

I've only been to two classic battlefields: Waterloo and Gettysburg. 

Waterloo is fascinating in its compactness, and in the drama of the two greatest generals of the age finally squaring off. It also had the great advantage of being the last battle of it age.

Napoleon's escape from Elba is one of the wildest yarns ever. The following headlines are said to have appeared in the French newspaper Moniteur in March of 1815. 
March 9   The Monster has escaped from his place of banishment.
March 10  The Corsican Ogre has landed at Cape Juan
March 11  The Tiger has shown himself at Gap. The Troops are advancing on all sides to arrest his progress. He will conclude his miserable adventure by becoming a wanderer among the mountains.
March 12  The Monster has actually advanced as far as Grenoble
March 13  The Tyrant is now at Lyon. Fear and Terror seized all at his appeaance.
March 18  The Usurper has ventured to approach to within 60 hours' march of the capital.
March 19  Bonaparte is advancing by forced marches, but it is impossible he can reach Paris.
March 20  Napoleon will arrive under the walls of Paris tomorrow.
March 21  The Emperor Napoleon is at Fountainbleau
March 22  Yesteday evening His Majesty the Emperor made his public entry and arrived at the Tuileries. Nothing can exceed the universal joy.

As General Georges le Paton said, "The French, we love a winner!"

But there's also a sense of exhaustion about Waterloo on June 18, 1815. The best British troops were returning from the War of 1812 in America, so Wellington fought his usual defensive tactics, sheltering his troop on the reverse slope of a low ridge, not asking more of them than he could expect. The French troops fought well, but they had been winnowed by two decades of war. 

Napoleon's initial strategy of driving a wedge between the British and the Prussians, so he could destroy each army separately, had somehow come to fruition, leaving him about 12 desperate hours to beat Wellington and then turn on Blucher. For once, though, Napoleon seemed too tired to seize the initiative, puttering away the morning before finally launching the battle.

As for Gettysburg, the War Nerd says, "But not Gettysburg. The more you know about it, the finer, cleaner, more goddamn magnificent it was."