Monday, August 07, 2006

New research has shattered a favourite left-wing myth about race relations

Excerpt below from here

Dear me, another political illusion shattered. Every time some new research comes out, it seems to destroy yet another of those firm foundations on which we build our political assumptions. One of those foundations, to put it bluntly, is that conservatives are racist. This argument is advanced by the Left as if it were some sort of unchallengeable truth....

But some recent research shows a different picture. Shanto Iyengar, a professor of communications at Stanford University, has just completed some experiments in partnership with The Washington Post on the attitudes of people to giving aid to victims of Hurricane Katrina... Democratic voters, of course, voted to give more money to hurricane victims and for a longer period. Hardly surprising, that: Democrats, like Labor voters here, are keen on giving away other people's money and, for them, a natural disaster is as good an opportunity for doing so as anything else.

But wait, what's this? The research shows Democrats were prepared to give $1500 more to victims if they were white than if they were black. What, give less money to innocent victims just because they were black? I'm afraid so. Moreover, Democrats would give more money to whites than to other minorities such as Asians and Hispanics. So it was left-wingers who used race as the big test.

Republicans, on the other hand, were not influenced by race at all. The Republicans' view, as Iyengar put it, was more principled, as they supported individualism instead of handouts: "Independents and Democrats, on the other hand, are more likely to be affected by racial cues." Even The Washington Post, on June 23, had to concede that this evident bias was disturbing.

But it gets worse. Iyengar's study matches perfectly with an earlier study by Franklin Gilliam Jr of the University of California, Los Angeles, that shows although Republican voters support tough treatment of criminals, Democrats and others "support harsher measures when the criminal suspect they encountered was non-white". Now that's not the way things are supposed to be. But if left-wingers and liberals use race in a way that right-wingers do not, in crime and now in something as deserving as hurricane relief, how about their attitudes on, say, social welfare? Surely, the Left would not discriminate on the grounds of race in that essential field?

Disturbingly, to use that ominous word, it turns out that Gilliam has done another study that looks at whether attitudes on welfare bludging are influenced by race and, you guessed it, they are influenced by it, but only if they are liberals. His exact words: "Depictions of white welfare queens also seem to induce whites who describe themselves as having liberal views about gender roles to arrive at extremely harsh views of African-Americans."

This has to stop. Unbridled research such as this will end up destroying all our cherished myths. Why, before you can say "chardonnay", we will be using facts and reality before we make political assumptions.



I am at it again, I am afraid. I have created yet another blog -- called Food & Health Skeptic. Together with one of the contributors to Wicked Thoughts, I have for over a month now been crossposting there articles that take a look at the latest food and health news, including the current "obesity" war. So far, all the articles there have also appeared either on Political Correctness Watch or on Wicked Thoughts but as from today, the postings there will mostly be original -- i.e. they will now be new postings rather than crosspostings from elsewhere. So if the ups and downs of what is said to be good and bad for you in foods and medicines are of interest to you, you now have a skeptic's view of it all. Links to stories that might be posted there are of course very welcome.



Free enterprise escaping the regulators: "One hundred workers count on Betsy Briones for their paychecks. But not one of them works for her. Briones is a so-called nonemployer, relying exclusively on contract or temporary workers. This arrangement, which allows employers to avoid the soaring costs of health insurance and other benefits, is booming in California, according to a Census Bureau report to be released today. The 63-year-old Briones runs a busy referral agency for in-home care workers out of her Los Angeles residence, placing caregivers with elderly or disabled clients. All of her caregivers are independent contractors and are responsible for obtaining their own benefits, she said. Los Angeles County - a hotbed for small business - seems to be the capital of this "free agent nation." It has more nonemployers than any other U.S. county, although their ranks are now growing even faster in the Inland Empire, according to the census report. California businesses have been hiring contract and temporary workers in construction, administrative and high-tech jobs for years, and the practice appears to be spreading to industries such as real estate brokerages, beauty salons and insurance agencies, the report said."

Two groups of haters join up -- Marxists and Muslims: "A radical anti-war coalition is joining forces with a U.S. Islamic lobby organization to stage a demonstration in front of the White House to protest "the current predicament of Muslims abroad and at home." A.N.S.W.E.R., a coalition led by socialist and communist activists, and Muslim American Society's Freedom Foundation are co-sponsoring the "National Emergency March" Aug. 12 at Lafayette Park at 12 noon. A third co-sponsor is the National Council of Arab Americans. A number of leaders for A.N.S.W.E.R. - Act Now to Stop War and End Racism - were members of the Workers World Party and now belong to the Party for Socialism and Liberation , a Marxist-Leninist organization founded in 2004. Along with the "plight of the Palestinian people and the recent atrocities in Gaza and Lebanon," the Muslim group says it will focus on the war in Iraq and "the continuous violation of civil rights and civil liberties within the American Muslim community."

U.N. logic: "A Geneva-based agency charged with eliminating world racism added its name yesterday to the growing list of U.N. organs denouncing Israel's war against Hezbollah. Members of the agency argued that Secretary-General Annan expected them to condemn Israel. To critics who wondered how the charge of racism could be applied to a war between two groups of Semites, one panel member - also known as an "expert" - of the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination said Israel would not have "reacted with the same violence if there was no racism involved"



"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

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