Wednesday, November 25, 2009
Black is bad -- researchers find
It's far from a watertight piece of research but the conclusions may well be accurate. Since being black in the USA is highly correlated with being criminal, poorly educated, welfare dependant etc., there are clear reasons why people might associate blackness with something they dislike
A study released today draws a connection between political partisanship and the skin tone of political candidates. Researchers from the Booth School of Business at the University of Chicago suggest people believe that a lighter skin tone is more representative of a candidate with whom they are politically aligned than a politician with a darker complexion.
"We found that people not only 'darken' those with whom they disagree, but also 'lighten' those with whom they agree," states the article, "Political partisanship influences perception of biracial candidates' skin tone," by Eugene Caruso, Nicole Mead, and Emily Balcetis, in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
Caruso, an assistant professor of behavioral science at Booth, was part of a team of a researchers who asked participating undergraduate students to identify his or her political affinity and then select the most representative photo of President Obama from a set of images. Participants were shown three photos: the original image, a lightened version and a darkened version. "The more people who thought that the lightened photos were representative of Obama, the more likely they were to report having voted for him in the election," Caruso said. "And that held as we controlled for political beliefs and attitudes."
Dr. Melanie Killen, a professor of Human Development at the University of Maryland, is skeptical of the study's findings, saying the conclusions drawn are too broad. "It does tell us that people are aware that there are associations with race, that it can be positive or negative and that in the political arena it is important to consider," said Killen. "But, there's a lot of complexity to these issues and when I read an article like this I get worried. People are aware that there are more negative and positive associations with skin tone and darker is negative and white is more positive. What do we do with the attitudes? Do they use it and manipulate it or is it that there are these associations out there and they understand that?"
Diana Owen, associate professor of political science at Georgetown University, told ABC News the study hints at a valid point, but, "I'm not so sure that the way they carried out the research with the manipulations of the images is particularly convincing or good. There's not a uniformity in imagery, so that conflates the findings in some way. Obama is casual in the lighter image and more formal in the darker image."
Owen suggests that even subtle tweaks to photographs can elicit a different response. "For example if you put a flag behind a candidate and you do a study of the public's perception of a candidate with the flag in the background and without the flag in the background, overwhelmingly people rate the one with the flag more positively. There are just certain triggers. They shouldn't have picked one where Obama is casual versus formal."
The skin tone in images came up during the Democratic primaries of the 2008 presidential campaign. Hillary Clinton's campaign came under fire from the liberal blogosphere for putting out a television ad attacking Obama that some believed portrayed the candidate with a darker skin tone. Likewise, Time Magazine was once criticized for darkening O.J. Simpson's skin color for its cover picture.
Killen also expressed concern about the small sample size of the study and its failure to address the background of the participants. "It's not about 'people' -- it's about the white majority, high status," said Killen, a developmental psychologist. "It's one thing if you're looking at eye blinking or memory in a study, but you're looking at issues of race and ethnicity. Don't you need to know the ethnicity of the participants?"
When asked by ABC News about the race and ethnicity of the participants, Caruso acknowledged the limitation. "We did ask participants to indicate their race at the end of the study and we were hoping that we'd be able to test for differences. Unfortunately, fewer than 10 percent of our participants identified as being black, so we didn't have enough power to test between black and non-black participants," Caruso said.
Obama's Nice Guy Act Gets Him Nowhere on the World Stage
Comment from Germany
Barack Obama looked tired on Thursday, as he stood in the Blue House in Seoul, the official residence of the South Korean president. He also seemed irritable and even slightly forlorn. The CNN cameras had already been set up. But then Obama decided not to play along, and not to answer the question he had already been asked several times on his trip: what did he plan to take home with him? Instead, he simply said "thank you, guys," and disappeared. David Axelrod, senior advisor to the president, fielded the journalists' questions in the hallway of the Blue House instead, telling them that the public's expectations had been "too high."
The mood in Obama's foreign policy team is tense following an extended Asia trip that produced no palpable results. The "first Pacific president," as Obama called himself, came as a friend and returned as a stranger. The Asians smiled but made no concessions.
Upon taking office, Obama said that he wanted to listen to the world, promising respect instead of arrogance. But Obama's currency isn't as strong as he had believed. Everyone wants respect, but hardly anyone is willing to pay for it. Interests, not emotions, dominate the world of realpolitik. The Asia trip revealed the limits of Washington's new foreign policy: Although Obama did not lose face in China and Japan, he did appear to have lost some of his initial stature.
In Tokyo, the new center-left government even pulled out of its participation in a mission which saw the Japanese navy refueling US warships in the Indian Ocean as part of the Afghanistan campaign. In Beijing, Obama failed to achieve any important concessions whatsoever. There will be no binding commitments from China to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. A revaluation of the Chinese currency, which is kept artificially weak, has been postponed. Sanctions against Iran? Not a chance. Nuclear disarmament? Not an issue for the Chinese.
The White House did not even stand up for itself when it came to the question of human rights in China. The president, who had said only a few days earlier that freedom of expression is a universal right, was coerced into attending a joint press conference with Chinese President Hu Jintao, at which questions were forbidden. Former US President George W. Bush had always managed to avoid such press conferences.
A look back in time reveals the differences. When former President Bill Clinton went to China in June 1998, Beijing wanted to impress the Americans. A press conference in the Great Hall of the People, broadcast on television as a 70-minute live discussion, became a sensation the world over. Clinton mentioned the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre, when the government used tanks against protestors. But then President Jiang Zemin defended the tough approach taken by the Chinese Communists. At the end of the exchange, the Chinese president praised the debate and said: "I believe this is democracy!"
Obama's new foreign policy has also been relatively unsuccessful elsewhere, with even friends like Israel leaving him high and dry. For the government of Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, peace is only conceivable under its terms. Netanyahu has rejected Obama's call for a complete moratorium on the construction of settlements. As a result, Obama has nothing to offer the Palestinians and the Syrians. "We thought we had some leverage," says Martin Indyk, a former ambassador to Israel under the Clinton administration and now an advisor to Obama. "But that proved to be an illusion."
Even the president seems to have lost his faith in a genial foreign policy. The approach that was being used in Afghanistan this spring, with its strong emphasis on civilian reconstruction, is already being changed. "We're searching for an exit strategy," said a staff member with the National Security Council on the sidelines of the Asia trip.
An end to diplomacy is also taking shape in Washington's policy toward Tehran. It is now up to Iran, Obama said, to convince the world that its nuclear power is peaceful. While in Asia, Obama mentioned "consequences" unless it followed his advice. This puts the president, in his tenth month in office, where Bush began -- with threats. "Time is running out," Obama said in Korea. It was the same phrase Bush used against former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein, shortly before he sent in the bombers.
Arrogant ACORN stung again
On October 1st, 2009 California Attorney General Jerry Brown announced that an investigation had been opened into ACORN’s activities in California, resulting from undercover videos showing employees seemingly offering to assist the undercover film makers with human smuggling, child prostitution and even tax advice to boot.
Although ACORN has denied any wrongdoing, some of the employees involved were terminated, and ACORN has publicly stated that they would fully cooperate with any investigations that followed.
Interestingly, the local head ACORN organizer in California, David Lagstein was caught on tape earlier this month speaking to an East County Democratic Club. Mr. Lagstein stated: “…the attorney general is a political animal, but certainly every bit of the communication we have had with them has suggested that the fault will be found with the people that did the video and not the people with ACORN.”
Continuing, Mr. Lagstein stated: “…we are fully cooperating, some of the investigators visited our office this morning and I think they really understand what’s going on.” Shockingly, we now learn that the ACORN office in National City (San Diego County) engaged in a massive document dump on the evening of October 9th, containing thousands upon thousands of sensitive documents, just days prior to the Attorney General’s visit.
BigGovernment.com has learned that not only did this document dump occur, but the documents in question were irresponsibly and brazenly dumped in a public dumpster, without considering laws and regulations as to how sensitive information should be treated.
I am a local licensed private investigator. I took it upon myself to keep an eye on what the local ACORN office was up to, in light of the release of the undercover videos. I retrieved these documents from the public dumpster.
Documents shared with BigGovernment.com include information exposing not only the inner workings of ACORN in California, but also personal, sensitive information belonging to employees, members and clients of ACORN. ACORN and its few remaining defenders insist that the “good” ACORN provides outweighs the transgressions exposed in the recent undercover video sting. But, ACORN’s massive dumping of these documents and the cavalier manner in which it betrayed the trust of its supporters betrays that talking point.
ACORN’s political agenda is also exposed, with thousands upon thousands of documents revealing the depth of the political machine that is ACORN, and its disturbing ties to not only public employee labor unions but some of the most radical leftist organizations.
The laws governing how sensitive, personal information such as social security numbers, driver’s license numbers, immigration records, tax returns, etc. must be treated are very stringent, and thus it seems as if ACORN may have committed serious violations in that department alone, with thousands upon thousands of potential plaintiffs.
Over the weeks and months ahead, BigGovernment.com will continue to release information from this shocking document dump by ACORN, slowly revealing the ugly truth of ACORN: the fact that their stated mission of helping the poor and downtrodden is just a ruse and a cover for an organization that is highly partisan and highly political, and thus rotten to the core.
TX: Palin book signing draws 4000: "Sarah Palin drew a crowd of over 4,000 on Monday to her book signing at Fort Bragg, though the former Alaska governor kept her appearance from turning into the kind of ‘political platform’ that some military officials were concerned about. Palin did not give a speech during her three-hour stop at the North Carolina Army base, apparently living up to her pledge to tone down the event after Fort Bragg officials expressed concern that the visit could prompt grandstanding against the Obama administration. … The Fayetteville Observer reported that about a dozen people had been waiting since Sunday. More than 1,200 people were lined up outside the Fort Bragg store where Palin was signing books by the time she arrived Monday morning.”
No new taxes?: "With the Bush tax cuts set to expire at the end of 2010 and both health care reform bills calling for increased tax revenue, the Obama Administration and Congress are about to saddle the American people one of the largest tax increases in history. The standard liberal litany for such a raid on taxpayers' pockets is that working Americans have a "moral obligation" to "feed the poor" -- or in the case of health care, pay their medical bills.
Huge debt burden incurred by Democrats A page one, top-of-the-fold New York Times report Monday warns that U.S. debt is rising so fast that the federal government is careening toward a "payment shock" in the not-too-distant future. The Times lead headline read: Federal Government Faces Balloon in Debt Payments: At $700 Billion a Year, Cost Will Top Budgets for 2 Wars, Education, Energy. The national debt now stands at over $12 trillion and the White House estimates that the cost of servicing the debt will rise to more than $700 billion a year in 2019, up from $202 billion this year. The Times suggests that $700 billion annual payment cost may be conservative. The additional $500 billion a year in interest payments would surpass the combined budgets this year for education, energy, homeland security, plus the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the Times observes. "Even as Treasury officials are racing to lock in today's low rates by exchanging short-term borrowings for long-term bonds, the government faces a payment shock similar to those that sent legions of overstretched homeowners into default on their mortgages," The Times reported on Monday. Interestingly, the alarming Times analysis comes as the nation is in the midst of a debate over healthcare reform proposals that could add many billions of dollars to the overall debt.
Malign neglect at Ft. Hood: "Holder promised a ’sound investigation’ of the shooting. It was a nice try, but Holder’s tone did little to disguise the speciousness of his words. We already know the answer to the three questions Holder posed. There were flags that were missed. There was miscommunication. And there was a lack of communication. The relevant question is not whether there were errors, but why — after eight years of restructuring our national security and intelligence infrastructure to prevent such failures — there were grave errors that cost 13 people their lives. The answer to that question is becoming all too clear: a deadly combination of political correctness and institutional stupidity. And in the days since the Fort Hood attack, those characteristics have remained on prominent display — both at the top of the Justice Department and in its ranks.”
Conservatives seek “Reagan litmus test” for RNC funding: "Eager to ensure that ‘tea partiers’ don’t undermine GOP candidates, conservative members of the Republican National Committee are pursuing the creation of a Reagan rule that would bar the Republican Party from funding candidates who fail a conservative litmus test. The group is circulating a petition among committee members that would enshrine former President Ronald Reagan’s proposition that his 80 percent friend was not his 20 percent enemy. The rule would require Republican candidates to share at least 80 percent of the party’s main tenets to be eligible for party aid.”
White House lied about why honest auditor was fired: "Just hours after Sen. Charles Grassley and Rep. Darrell Issa released a report Friday on their investigation into the abrupt firing of AmeriCorps inspector general Gerald Walpin, the Obama White House gave the lawmakers a trove of new, previously-withheld documents on the affair. It was a twist on the now-familiar White House late-Friday release of bad news; this time, the new evidence was put out not only at the start of a weekend but also hours too late for inclusion in the report. The new documents support the Republican investigators' conclusion that the White House's explanation for Walpin's dismissal -- that it came after the board of the Corporation for National and Community Service, which oversees AmeriCorps, unanimously decided that Walpin must go -- was in fact a public story cobbled together after Walpin was fired, not before. Walpin was axed on the evening of June 10, when he received a call from Norman Eisen, the special counsel to the president for ethics and government reform, who told Walpin he had one hour either to resign or be fired. The next day, congressional Republicans, led by Grassley, objected, charging that Walpin's dismissal violated a recently-passed law requiring the president to give Congress 30 days' notice before dismissing an inspector general.
Plundering California. Public-sector unions have brought the state to its knees: "The economy is struggling, the unemployment rate is high, and many Americans are struggling to pay the bills, but one class of Americans is doing quite well: government workers. Their pay levels are soaring, they enjoy unmatched benefits, and they remain largely immune from layoffs, except for some overly publicized cutbacks around the margins. To make matters worse, government employees—thanks largely to the power of their unions—have carved out special protections that exempt them from many of the rules that other working Americans must live by. California has been on the cutting edge of this dangerous trend, which has essentially turned government employees into a special class of citizens. When I recently appeared on Glenn Beck’s TV show to discuss California’s dreadful fiscal situation, I mentioned that in Orange County, where I had been a columnist for the Orange County Register, the average pay and benefits package for firefighters was $175,000 per year. After the show, I heard from viewers who couldn’t believe the figure, but it’s true. Firefighters, like all public-safety officials in California, also receive a gold-plated retirement plan: a defined-benefit annual pension that offers 90 percent or more of the worker’s final year’s pay, guaranteed for the rest of his life (and the life of his spouse)."
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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" (Nationalsozialist) and the full name of Hitler's political party (translated) was "The National Socialist German Workers' Party" (In German: Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei)
Posted by JR at 1:48 AM