Monday, January 17, 2011

Are racists cuddly?

That question would seem to be answered in the affirmative by the research below. As I have had a great deal published in the academic literature on "ethnocentrism", I feel I should point out an important flaw in the research: It studies something that does not exist!

"Ethnocentrism" is a theory, not a concept. It postulates that people who like their own group look down on other groups. But all the evidence over many years of research shows that not to be true. Liking for your own group does NOT mean that you look down on other groups. Patriots are not necessarily racist and some people are generally benevolent, for instance -- i.e. some people who greatly appreciate their own group greatly appreciate at least some other groups too.

A further problem is that the research below used experimental tasks as its measures of "ethnocentrism". But experimental tasks have a very poor record of generalizing and so are a poor index of stable personality or attitude syndromes. A carefully validated questionnaire would have been a better (though still far from perfect) measure.

So the research is a very poor answer to the question it poses and the last sentence in the abstract below would seem to be totally unfounded. In short, the research is largely vitiated by its psychometric naivety -- a very common problem in experimental psychology.

Nonetheless, from all the things we know about oxytocin, it is probably true that oxytocin facilitates within-group trust, cooperation, and coordination.
Oxytocin promotes human ethnocentrism

By Carsten K. W. De Dreu1 et al.


Human ethnocentrism—the tendency to view one's group as centrally important and superior to other groups—creates intergroup bias that fuels prejudice, xenophobia, and intergroup violence. Grounded in the idea that ethnocentrism also facilitates within-group trust, cooperation, and coordination, we conjecture that ethnocentrism may be modulated by brain oxytocin, a peptide shown to promote cooperation among in-group members. In double-blind, placebo-controlled designs, males self-administered oxytocin or placebo and privately performed computer-guided tasks to gauge different manifestations of ethnocentric in-group favoritism as well as out-group derogation. Experiments 1 and 2 used the Implicit Association Test to assess in-group favoritism and out-group derogation. Experiment 3 used the infrahumanization task to assess the extent to which humans ascribe secondary, uniquely human emotions to their in-group and to an out-group. Experiments 4 and 5 confronted participants with the option to save the life of a larger collective by sacrificing one individual, nominated as in-group or as out-group. Results show that oxytocin creates intergroup bias because oxytocin motivates in-group favoritism and, to a lesser extent, out-group derogation. These findings call into question the view of oxytocin as an indiscriminate “love drug” or “cuddle chemical” and suggest that oxytocin has a role in the emergence of intergroup conflict and violence.



The evil consequences of the Left's hate-filled class war

I put the article below up late last year. It was written before the Tucson shootings. I am re-posting it here because I think it shows very clearly that the accusations coming from the Left about the Tucson shootings are just projection. They are seeing in conservatives what they do themselves

We often take the class warfare rhetoric of the Left for granted these days, inured to its wickedness by its ubiquity in the media and academia. For most on the Right the class and race warfare rhetoric espoused by leftists is simply another point to debate and an easy explanation for leftist political stances and social mores. But this ideology of hatred does more than affect tax policy, it costs lives. America’s streets run red with the blood of the innocent cut down by the foot soldiers of the secret war America’s Left has initiated.

Clay Duke, the man who opened fire on a Florida school board, was one such foot soldier. But he was also a victim. That the mentally ill Duke took his cues from leftist groups like Media Matters is verified by Duke’s own words. What shocked people more was the reaction of his supposedly sane wife who, having just heard that her husband committed suicide after attempting to murder several innocent men and women, told news crews that her mentally disturbed husband should be an example to all Americans. She called for a violent class war.

I may be unkind to point out the obvious here but it’s clear that this deranged man not only adopted the class warfare rhetoric of the Left, but was enabled by his radical wife. Fortunately for his would-be victims Duke only ended up killing himself, but that doesn’t mean there wasn’t a victim here. Duke needed help and those closest to him were so mired in their Marxist fantasy world that he ended up dead and his friends and supporters (yes, there are supporters of Clay Duke) continue their radical passion play.

But this has distracted attention from an even more disturbing story. In Cape Cod a series of fires are being blamed on an arsonist who leaves a very telling calling card. From the Cape Cod Times:
Police and fire officials are investigating an arson fire in Sandwich that has a disturbing similarity with a suspicious incident in Barnstable.

In both cases, the arsonist left a calling card, the message, “(expletive) the rich” at the scene.

At 3:30 a.m. on Nov. 24, flames engulfed an unoccupied home still under construction at 16 Boulder Brook Road in Sandwich. Only the exterior of the house had been completed. The home, which was valued at $500,000, had a three-car garage and three bedrooms, but no plumbing or electric service, Sandwich Fire Chief George Russell said.

The heavy damage burned much of the evidence. But the state Fire Marshal’s Office was recently able to rule that an arsonist had set the fire, Russell said.

The following week, on Dec. 2, incendiary devices were found at 43 Trotters Lane in Marstons Mills, law enforcement officials said.

At Trotters Lane, the message “(expletive) the rich,” was clearly spray painted on a fence on the property, Barnstable police Det. John York said.

York said a similar message had been found at the Sandwich property. Sandwich officials have declined to provide details about that case.

“F*@k the rich” is a common battle cry for radicals, including Libertarian Communists and Anarchists of all stripes, even ones who are admittedly well off themselves. But class warfare in America has little to do with actual class, it is simply a call for violence against those who oppose neo-Marxist policies. That is why these mighty “class warriors” tend to be the children of well-off families.

On May Day of this year there was a riot in Asheville, North Carolina organized by a Black Bloc cell. The very left-leaning city’s residents expressed surprise that their stores were attacked, going so far as to claim they were “on the same side” politically. Several people contacted me to tell me that the riot was organized by the local anarchists and socialists using radical bookstores for planning meetings and the dozen or so rioters arrested turned out to be local college kids.

A few months later an anarchist named Casey Brezik slit the throat of a Missouri community college dean in a blitz attack launched during a special event featuring Governor Jay Nixon. Brezik, like Duke, was mentally unstable and his family had declared him an endangered missing adult. While they worried about their missing loved one, local anarchists were providing Breznik with shelter and drugs and setting him loose on the public. It turned out that he had been arrested at the G-20 for assaulting a police officer, but Canada only held him for two days before deporting him back to us.

Like Duke, this “class warrior” was little more than a mentally disturbed weapon used by leftists to inflict as much destruction as possible on innocent Americans.

Racial division is a key strategy of class warfare, and the Left is adept at stirring up racial animosity. The recent riots in Oakland were organized by the Revolutionary Communist Party, who also played a hand in organizing violent clashes between police and illegal immigrants in Westlake, California. In both cases the RCP used racially charged incidents to stir up “revolution” and class war.

But protests turning into riots are the least consequence of the Left’s racially divisive class war.

Over the summer Des Moines was plagued with a series of racially motivated attacks at the Iowa State Fairgrounds where whites were attacked at random by black teens who police reported said it was “beat Whitey night.” Several police officers were attacked and in at least one incident a teen girl brazenly assaulted a woman in front of police for no reason other than her race.

A 4th of July “flash mob” in Philadelphia also included racially motivated assaults on random people.

In the once “up and coming” upper Manhattan neighborhood of Inwood, a 200 member strong Latino motorcycle gang has been terrorizing the well-to-do residents and the police have been powerless to stop them.

More disturbing were the 2007 murders of Channon Christian and Christopher Newsome. The young white couple was kidnapped, raped, and tortured in a racially charged murder many dubbed the Knoxville Horror. Christopher Newsome was sodomized then dragged to some nearby railroad tracks where he was shot and set on fire. Channon Christian then endured several hours of “horrific” sexual torture before being hog-tied and left with a plastic bag tied over her head in a dumpster where she slowly suffocated.

And while that case became the focus for racial debate the crime had more to do with class envy and the racial divisions promoted by the Left producing criminals with a sense of entitlement to their criminality if the victim is easily perceived as an “oppressor.” The Left stoked the fires of animosity by portraying calls for the five murderers to face hate crimes as racist themselves.

Too many on the Right have been lulled into complacency by the dreary pronouncements of the Left. We think that because there isn’t massive, sustained civil unrest that the Left’s class war is just an idea, a theory that drives the push to reinstate the death tax. But the class war dreamed of by the Left is here and its casualties are the thousands of mugging victims, rape victims and murder victims that we read a few lines about in the local crime blotters. Houses burned, Americans dead and whole sections of our cities given over to the near lawlessness and we still won’t accept that a “class war” has begun?

What will it take for America to wake up and see that the poison the Left has spewed into our culture is killing us?



The widening fight against public-sector unions

by Jeff Jacoby

In New Jersey, freshman Governor Chris Christie has been locked a battle royal with his state's powerful teachers unions. In California, Oakland's new mayor began her first full day in office by demanding that unionized police officers, who pay nothing toward their pensions, be required to contribute 9 percent of their salaries.

In New York, federal prosecutors have opened a criminal investigation into whether Sanitation Department workers purposely paralyzed the city with a work slowdown during last month's blizzard. In Massachusetts, Governor Deval Patrick infuriated public-safety unions by replacing costly police details with civilian flaggers at many construction and repair sites.

Now the Midwest is poised to become a major theater in the war against insatiable government unions.

Within days of taking office in 2005, two Republican governors -- Mitch Daniels in Indiana and Matt Blunt in Missouri -- issued executive orders rolling back collective-bargaining rights for state workers. Because public-sector unions in those states had been granted the right to bargain collectively through executive orders in the first place, Daniels and Blunt had only to rescind their predecessors' actions.

Even before he was sworn in last week, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker had fired a shot across the bow of his state's public-sector unions. Speaking to the Milwaukee Press Club, he said he would consider using "every legal means" to weaken those unions -- from decertifying their exclusive right to bargain on behalf of state employees to modifying state law.

"You are not going to hear me degrade state and local employees in the public sector," Walker said. "But we can no longer live in a society where the public employees are the haves and the taxpayers who foot the bills are the have-nots." More than 50 years ago, Wisconsin was the first state to enact a public-sector collective-bargaining law, and killing it outright might be too tall an order even for a governor whose party controls both houses of the legislature. But Walker and like-minded lawmakers may well succeed in excluding from collective bargaining the most highly-abused benefit categories, such as pensions and health insurance.

In Ohio, meanwhile, incoming Governor John Kasich has long made ending public-sector collective bargaining a priority. In 2009 he said he wanted to "break the back of organized labor in the schools," and last month he underscored his conviction that government workers who go on strike should be fired.

More here



House panel wants Homeland Security documents: "A House committee has asked the Homeland Security Department to provide documents about an agency policy that required political appointees to review many Freedom of Information Act requests, according to a letter obtained Sunday by The Associated Press. The letter to Homeland Security was sent late Friday by Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee."

An extremist and proud of it: "I knew I was an extremist from the time Barry Goldwater announced that 'Extremism in defense of liberty is no vice, moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue.' That’s because an extremist is just someone who holds a set of positions that is internally consistent, uncompromising, and demands full integrity"

The evils of the drug war: "Most everyone is familiar with the disastrous consequences of the war on drugs: drug gangs, drug lords, drug suppliers, gang wars, muggings, robberies, thefts, corruption of judges, prosecutors, and law-enforcement officials, murders, assassinations, overcrowded jails, asset forfeiture, and on and on. The fact is that nothing good is produced by the war on drugs. All the results are bad."

There is a new lot of postings by Chris Brand just up -- on his usual vastly "incorrect" themes of race, genes, IQ etc.


List of backup or "mirror" sites here or here -- for readers in China or for everyone when blogspot is "down" or failing to update. Email me here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here (Academic) or here (Pictorial) or here (Personal)


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)


1 comment:

Robert said...

"But class warfare in America has little to do with actual class, it is simply a call for violence against those who oppose neo-Marxist policies."

That pretty much says it all, and shows such leftists to be sworn, inalterable, eternal, and irredeemable enemies of all humanity, waging predatory war upon humanity. Humans have learned how to deal with such predators before, and it's clearly time to re-learn how to deal with them once again, and get ready to end the menace.