« More Proof That I Am Not a Thirteen-Year-Old Girl | Main | On Fungal Matters »

November 20, 2012

Comments

TimT

That last quote by Victor Davis Hanson esq summarises neatly a point I've been making for some weeks now about the ridiculous limitations of the demographic categories triumphant lefties have been making following the election. And he makes a neat connection to the idea of a tribal society, too.

sk60

Such are the absurd questions that arise in a tribal society where one’s primary allegiances are not to universal values or collective traditions and customs, but are first pledged to those who look most like oneself.

Divide. Then conquer.

the wolf

The link to Deflem is timely for me. I read an article this morning that explored why there are many well-paying jobs unfilled in professions like that don't require a college degree. We've spent the last three or four decades convincing high school graduates that the only worthwhile pursuit is a college education at the expense of every other potential career path. It's no wonder that not only have costs skyrocketed but the market cannot sustain the glut of graduates, now unemployed and saddled with astronomical debt. Further, as he points out, college today is less about education than it is about being credentialing factories. The only logical outcome is the devaluation of the degree. Less value for greater cost, courtesy of the distortions introduced to the market.

TimT

Obviously it makes sense for the Republicans, and right-wing parties in general, to appeal to as many voters as possible - and to gain the support of different demographics. But not via the tribalistic politics of the left: the assumption that 'this policy will appeal to this group', and 'this policy will appeal to this group', and 'there is too much discrimination against so and so', etc, is severely limiting. There are things which affect all groups, no matter what their origins are: the availability of jobs, economic prosperity, the need for a decent education and stable families; the importance of personal responsibility, desire for freedom, etc.

liamalpha

While like any human system, worker unions can be corrupted, doing more harm for their cause than good, they have an important role in a capitalist society - namely, defending the rights granted to the worker by law and employing contract, and improving the employing conditions workers can get. If some employers pay specific workers higher wages in return for not joining worker unions, one can argue that worker unions already improved (albeit indirectly) the working conditions for these workers, simply by existing! In a free market, it's certainly the right of workers to form unions in order to bargain for better terms, and it's just a trade-off in the capitalist system.

randian

In a free market, it's certainly the right of workers to form unions in order to bargain for better terms, and it's just a trade-off in the capitalist system.

That's true only if the employer can tell the union to buzz off. Unfortunately, our law no longer permits a free market. Unions have numerous coercive powers under the law.

David

Are Asians “overrepresented” at UC Berkeley — or are the 20% of the student body who are white males the ruling establishment? Are blacks “overrepresented” at the U.S. Postal Service, but “underrepresented” at the DMV? Such are the absurd questions that arise in a tribal society where one’s primary allegiances are not to universal values or collective traditions and customs, but are first pledged to those who look most like oneself.

It’s remarkable just how readily, and often, identity politics leads to absurdity. As when Bidisha – the Guardian’s self-described “non-white angry political female” - claimed to witness “cultural femicide” and “the erasure of women from public life” based on… two minutes of counting posters in the London Underground. She then demanded “gender balance” because she just knows what the correct gender ratio ought to be in every occupation and at every cultural event, regardless of who actually wants to take part. So colossal is her brain.

And then of course there’s Omar Kholeif, a middle-class curator and “queer film theorist” and recipient of publicly-subsidised racial favouritism, who tells us he’s professionally ethnic and terribly oppressed. Though by what he doesn’t say. Despite failing to provide even one scrap of evidence to support his grandiose victimhood, he nevertheless feels entitled to deference and public money. You see, by simply having Egyptian parents, he’s helping us to “avoid imperialistic tendencies.”

But remember, people. Identity politics is liberating.

Anna

the needless additional costs that these make-work rules created ended up driving the company into bankruptcy

Thanks to exactly the kind of people you wouldn't want to employ again.

Henry

Surreal

'North Korea Is Similar To The UK', Says Defector Seung-Chul

Speaking in a NK News live debate on The Huffington Post UK, Seng-chul said he had always been led to believe how selfish, corrupt and money-grabbing Western capitalist societies are, but found his home country had many similar values to the UK.

Speaking through a translator, he said: "I sometimes actually think how similar North Korea and the UK are. The regime would tell us exactly what they believed are the assets of the perfect communist state and I find a lot of those characteristics here. Schools are free, medical care is free, the hospital system is the same. I feel the UK fits the description of what NK officials think of as a perfect communist state"

JuliaM

Marvellous sub-Pseud's Corner stuff from Kieran Yates in CiF:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/nov/20/jay-z-truffles-bling

"Food has always been an issue in working class communities, and one of the first things you learn when you are finally allowed consumer power is that food that you once thought was off limits is in fact accessible. Jay-Z understands the cultural capital of food, and with his purchase he is showing the world that taste is not for the white elite to dictate."

Reed

"Obtaining a college degree has become a matter of justice"

Everything has become a matter of 'justice' where the left is concerned. Social justice, environmental justice, education justice, economic justice...blah blah blah.

During the 'great exams results fiasco' of 2012, I witnessed several Labour MPs tweeting their demands for 'exam justice'. Failure, or in this case the mere failure to secure record breaking success, is now a form of 'discrimination'. Of course, exams are (or were) designed specifically to discriminate - to distinguish between the varying degrees of success and failure. These are just two of the left's insidious distortions of language for the own ends.

This fairly recent but now ubiquitous 'justice' theme is a manipulative contrivance, designed to add a cloak of objectivity to their entirely subjective 'fairness and equality' agenda.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/1494409/Failed-at-school-No-it-was-merely-a-deferred-success.html#

Reed

From that Telegraph article...

"Some people find failure very hard to cope with and you should try not to face them with things they can't do. If you experience a lot of failure, it might stop you wanting to learn."

...wouldn't want a child's education to ever become challenging and stimulating. Best to keep them in their comfort zone, that'll inspire them to achieve uniform mediocrity.

...but hey, they mean well.

TDK

I asked a teacher who was ranting about the injustice of this year's exam results if she thought that children who took the exam 5 years ago had been treated unjustly - after all they were graded more harshly than in all but one of the subsequent years. And, by extension, were children who took the exams in 2000 treated unjustly compared with those of 5 years ago? Let me not labour the point by going back for the past 40+ years.

It took some while for the logic to sink in and I had to rephrase the question several times, but it did finally. How do I know? Because the discussion turned away from exam results to my lack of character.

The truth is, the declared concern for the students is a smokescreen designed to deflect attention from the fact that a producer interest group does not want to be challenged.

Dr.Dawg

"The Twinkies bankruptcy is a classic example of costs created by labour unions that are not confined to paycheques."

For the record, the unions made substantial concessions. Not so the greedy, incompetent managers. http://politix.topix.com/homepage/3442-unions-hostess-ceo-received-300-raise-before-bankruptcy

Ted S., Catskill Mtns., NY, USA

Have you by any chance mentioned Occupy Art yet?

One of the quick conclusions I reached is that the writer is irritated that there are people spending large sums of money on art that doesn't have the correct political view, and worse, that are was created by people with the wrong genetic makeup.

It gets so much better, though.

Paolo Mint

TimT writes:

Obviously it makes sense for the Republicans, and right-wing parties in general, to appeal to as many voters as possible - and to gain the support of different demographics. But not via the tribalistic politics of the left: the assumption that 'this policy will appeal to this group', and 'this policy will appeal to this group', and 'there is too much discrimination against so and so', etc, is severely limiting. There are things which affect all groups, no matter what their origins are: the availability of jobs, economic prosperity, the need for a decent education and stable families; the importance of personal responsibility, desire for freedom, etc.

Also: firm commitment to fatuous, futile, feel-good slogans, steely determination to ignore reality, resolute refusal to learn from repeated failure, etc.

Or is that just Hanson and the neo-cons?

When I think how complex and powerful the human brain is, how many millions of years it's been in the making, I really could weep at how readily people hand theirs over to others for filling up with fairydust. If all groups desire freedom, stable families, and a decent education, why do those things not flourish everywhere and in all groups? If all groups believe in "personal responsibility", why do some groups vote overwhelmingly for Barack Obama and Big Government? If our "origins" don't matter, why have countries founded by English-speaking Protestants taken such different "trajectories" compared to countries founded by Romance-speaking Catholics?

But don't tell me: I'm being "tribalistic". It's really all about ideas. The US is a "proposition" nation. It coulda been founded by Equatorial Guineans or Inuit or Andaman Islanders and woulda turned out EXACTLY the same, just so long as those "killer apps" of ideology were in place. Origin doesn't matter. Immigration is great. No, really it is. Let's legalize everyone and open the borders to the huddled masses of the world, yearning to breathe free. The Republicans have just gotta find a way of appealing to the new population, while avoiding the "severely limiting" tactics that won Obama his second term and that will have even greater success in future.

The comments to this entry are closed.

For Amazon US use this link .

Your filthy consumerism supports this blog.

Blogroll