January 7, 2006

Second-guessing the Rose Bowl one more time

A reader responds to my argument that at the end of the national championship football game, USC should have put Heisman Trophy winner Reggie Bush in on defense to play the "spy" position that tracks Texas running quarterback Vince Young, and offers a strategy of his own:

You have a point, although Reggie is a little smaller. I too was stunned that Pete Carroll came up with nada with regards to Mr. Young. Reggie certainly could have tracked him. Would have been fun to watch. Part of the problem wasn't that USC wasn't fast enough, but they simply missed tackles. They had to hold on and wait for the troops to arrive. I sometimes see defenses try to slam the guy down and not gang tackle. I feel this was USC's issue. Vince Young is a beast and slippery. Really cool to watch.

After a couple of days pondering, I came to the following conclusion. On the final drive, It was apparent that USC could not stop Texas, period. This is not unusual in football. I suspect that when teams are tired, offenses take over because it is simply harder to play defense. It takes more effort.

So, here's the strategy -- do whatever it takes to get the ball back ... including letting Texas score fast! We have heard it a million times, the last team with the ball will win the game. Time is more valuable that points.

So, here is what USC should have done...

Bring the house on blitzes of the quarterback. I know Pete Carroll blitzed, but I mean 7-8 men, both corners. Also, instruct the safeties to go for the interception. If you sack or pick, game over. If they score, big play and you get the ball back.

And put Reggie Bush in at left side linebacker to blitz. Nobody can block him in the open field and his pressure would force Young to scramble to his left, making him a poorer passer.

My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

How widely censored is iSteve.com?

A reader writes:

James J Hill [the "Empire Builder" whose statue so offends the young diversicrat below] was an immigrant himself, born in Montreal, and lived in St Paul, MN. He built the city's downtown library in 1913. It sits on handsome Rice Park. I go in there quite often, and sometimes try to pull up iSteve.com on one of their terminals. It almost never appears. You get a generic "this page cannot be displayed". The library claims they use no filtering software, but it sure is strange. How sad, because it's the best room in the city in which to study.

Who else finds www.iSteve.com to be censored? (Of course, this presumes you read me at more than one location, at least one uncensored.)

Blocking iSteve.com: Readers write:

Two or three times I've gotten bored waiting in airports and decided to see what good ol' Steve was writing about, only to get "cannot be displayed" or some sort of filter message on the airport computer. Same with VDARE.


5 years ago, when I lived in your neck of the woods on the West Coast and worked for Glendale Water and Power, isteve was blocked by their software. Funny thing is, yours was the _only_ political site I ever found blocked. Now that I work on the East Coast I for a Fortune 500, very p.c. private company I only check from home...just in case.

My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

Is G**gle A*s trying hard enough?

My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

January 6, 2006

Diversity Doings at the U. of Washington

The UW faculty newspaper reports:

Starting this quarter, students will be able to work toward a minor in diversity at the UW. By taking one foundational course and a number of electives offered in a variety of departments, students in any major can earn a minor in this interdisciplinary program....

There are six foundation courses. This quarter, two of them -- Introduction to Women Studies (Women 200) and People of the USA (History 105) will be offered. Other foundation courses include: Introduction to American Ethnic Groups (AES 151), Religion, Identity and Cultural Pluralism (Anthropology 330), Introduction to Disability Studies (LSJ/CHID 332), and Racism and Minority Groups (Psychology 250). An additional history course and a communication course are being developed as foundation courses.

"The foundation course is to expose the student to the baseline issues with regard to diversity -- which is about the study of social categorization and power," Bonus said...

"I would expect students who earn this minor to get a basic knowledge of how to approach diversity," White said. "I also would expect students to be able -- with the minor on their transcript--to use that in their field. That's good in the workforce, wherever you are."

Sure, it is. What employer in the private sector wouldn't want to hire somebody who minored in diversity? The only thing you would have to worry about is losing out to a job applicant who majored in Diversity.

Seriously, rather than take all these classes in order to put "Minored in Diversity" on your resume, wouldn't it be faster and just as effective to merely write on your job application: "If I get the job, it's almost certain that I'll eventually sue you for discrimination"?

[Although judging by the ads appearing on this page, there are quite a few jobs available for Diversity majors with "diversity workshop trainers" and the like, firms hired by big companies to lecture their poor employees in order to show the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission they tolerate no Crimethink.]

[Anyway, please don't click on ads you have no interest in just to have Google send some pennies my way -- Google gets mad and can cancel my account. (How could they know you are aren't really interested? Of course they know. They're Google.) But, if you do see an ad for something that looks worth clicking on, please click on it.]

Meanwhile, the alumni magazine reports on how the university is subsidizing racial resentment:

James J. Hill, the “Empire Builder,” glowers from atop his pedestal outside More Hall. Across the street, Jaebadiah Gardner, ’05, a 22-year-old of African and Mexican descent, glowers back at him.

“He looks like a plantation owner,” Gardner says.

In fact, Hill was a Minnesotan and a devoted Unionist, and his Great Northern Railroad helped put Seattle on the map in the late 19th century. But he was also an old-fashioned, tight-fisted tycoon. His Northern Securities Company was an early target of Teddy Roosevelt’s trust-busting efforts, and his labor practices were typical of his time—pay immigrants the lowest possible rate for the most punishing work.

How benighted! Thank God things are different in the 21st Century! Oh, wait, I forgot, progressives are now in favor of importing uneducated foreigners "to do the jobs Americans just won't do." Never mind ...

The bronze bust looks to be about three times as large as an actual human head and shoulders, and the whole statue, pedestal included, is as tall as a person with a head that big would be. “He’s elevated,” Gardner says, strolling off down Stevens Way. “We’re being told to admire him.”

It’s not so much the presence of such statues on the UW campus that bothers Gardner. It’s their ubiquity, which, he feels, comes at the expense of more diverse artwork and contributes to a sense of invisibility among students of color.

Damn white guys just accomplished too much.

“It’s a struggle, going to class every day,” he says. “Nobody looks like you. You’re talking about European history. You’re talking, basically, about everything that’s not you.” Gardner is a builder, too, but not of empires. On the median that divides the walkway between Mary Gates Hall and Suzzallo Library, there’s a new public monument to diversity. It’s also a monument to the dedication of Gardner and his good friend Sumona Das Gupta, who spent more than a year getting the administration’s attention, getting a special design-build class created, getting the money, getting the site and getting the thing made.

Entitled “Blocked Out,” it, too, has a pedestal. But this one is unoccupied—a granite block with bare footprints carved on top. ... Under a nearby cedar tree, a plaque reads “BLOCKED OUT—Dedicated to those who are excluded from the house they were exploited to create.”...

Gardner recalls several of his friends from freshman year decamping for other schools after only a quarter or two. “I’m telling them, ‘Hang in there,’ ” he says, starting up the path between Drumheller Fountain and “Red Square.” “And they’re like, ‘No, man, you hang in there.’"

He stops in the middle of the square and gestures toward Suzzallo’s imposing façade, with its 18 terra-cotta figures standing saint-like in their niches: Plato, Gutenberg, Shakespeare, Benjamin Franklin. “All men,” Gardner says. “Virtually all European. All people who have been canonized within academia. The style is very Gothic, which is cool, but when it’s everywhere… And this is what everybody sees when they come to campus for the first time. Every tour stops in front of Suzzallo —‘Here it is. What do you think?’ And I think, ‘I’m not in here. Or my family, or my friends.’ ”

Here's the full list of the 18 Dead White European Males whose statues in the University's "Red Square" are so oppressive to young Jaebadiah Gardner's self-esteem, along with their "eminence scores" in various arts and sciences (but not law or economics), as objectively calculated in Charles Murray's Human Accomplishment, on a scale where 100 is the greatest figure in the history of the field:

Moses (Murray doesn't rank Law or Religion)
Louis Pasteur
(Medicine 100, Combined Sciences 46)
Dante Alighieri (Western Literature 62)
Shakespeare (Western Literature 100)
Plato (Western Philosophy 87)
Benjamin Franklin (Technology 32, Physics 21, Western Literature 4)
Justinian I (Law)
Isaac Newton
(Combined Sciences 100, Physics 100, Mathematics 89)
Leonardo da Vinci (Western Art 61, Technology 58, Biology 34, Physics 13)
Galileo Galilei (Combined Sciences 89, Astronomy 100, Physics 83, Technology 18)
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (Western Literature 81, Biology 18)
Herodotus (Western Literature 15)
Adam Smith (Economics isn't ranked)
(Western Literature 54)
Johann Gutenberg (Technology 23)
Ludwig van Beethoven (Western Music 100)
Charles Darwin (Biology 100, Combined Sciences 37)
Hugo Grotius (Law)

If Jaebadiah Grant was less ignorant and more aware of the scale of these men's accomplishments, he'd probably be even more peeved by them.

Alumnus Anthony Williams wrote in a letter to the editor:

If nothing else, your article on the concrete block with footprints now adorning the UW campus certainly demonstrated the quality of art produced by a committee. ... While our so very earnest students are learning to design and place a concrete block, the extremely selective schools of science and technology in China and India are turning out hundreds of thousands of graduates, who probably never considered whether their campus was “welcoming” or not. Those institutions are selecting for excellence, not diversity. Tick, tick, tick, tick ...

My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

Larry Auster on Mark Steyn

Churchill to receive Mark Steyn award

For this magnificent and brilliant speech, delivered by Prime Minister Winston Churchill in the House of Commons in June 1940, the Claremont Institute has announced that it will posthumously give Mr. Churchill its prestigious Mark Steyn award...

The British people have strong stomachs, so let me lay it out as baldly as I can. Much of the so-called Western world will effectively disappear within our lifetimes, including many if not most western European countries. There’ll probably still be a geographical area on the map marked as Italy or the Netherlands or Britain, but they will be merely designations for real estate, because they will have been taken over by Nazi Germany.

We know it’s not really a “war on blitzkriegs.” Nor is it, at heart, a war against Germany, or even “radical Germanism.” The Nazi belief system, whatever its merits for the believers, is a problematic business for the rest of us. There are many trouble spots in Europe today, but as a general rule, it’s easy to make an educated guess at one of the participants: Germans vs. Poles in Poland, Germans vs. Norwegians in Norway, Germans vs. Dutch in the Netherlands, Germans vs. the French in France, Germans vs. the Jews everywhere. And soon, Germans against us in our own Island.

Yet while Germanism is the enemy, it’s not what this thing’s about. Radical Germanism is an opportunist infection, which only kills you when your body’s too weak to fight it off. Which the smarter Nazis have figured out. They know they can never win in France, they know they can never win on the seas and oceans, they know they can never win on the landing grounds, they know they can never win in the fields and in the streets, they know they can never win in the hills, but they figure there’s an excellent chance they can drag things out until we in Britain and the other Western democracies collapse on our own and Nazism inherits by default....

So I say to you, even though large tracts of Europe and many old and famous states have fallen or may fall into the grip of the Gestapo and all the odious apparatus of Nazi rule, there is essentially nothing we can do about it. We in the Western democracies are not producing enough babies. We also have too much big government. We are weak and flaccid. Indeed, so sick and cowardly have we become that a Nazi Europe may well be easier for our American friends to deal with than the present Europe of cynical, wily, duplicitous nations. But getting there is certain to be messy, and violent. Until the shape of the new Europe begins to emerge, there’s no point in expending one’s energies on behalf of the terminally ill. But the New World, with all its power and might, is still safe and thriving. I intend to move there immediately, and take up residence in New Hampshire, where I will write gloating columns about Europe’s imminent demise. Goodbye.

This is a parody of Steyn's recent article "It's the Demography, Stupid," which I discussed here.

My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

Paul Graham

A painter turned computer entrepreneur offers some advice from a nerdocentric viewpoint to high school students: "What You'll Wish You Had Known."

And in "What You Can't Say," he explains:

No one gets in trouble for saying that 2 + 2 is 5, or that people in Pittsburgh are ten feet tall. Such obviously false statements might be treated as jokes, or at worst as evidence of insanity, but they are not likely to make anyone mad. The statements that make people mad are the ones they worry might be believed. I suspect the statements that make people maddest are those they worry might be true...

Some would ask, why would one want to do this? Why deliberately go poking around among nasty, disreputable ideas? Why look under rocks?

I do it, first of all, for the same reason I did look under rocks as a kid: plain curiosity. And I'm especially curious about anything that's forbidden. Let me see and decide for myself.

Second, I do it because I don't like the idea of being mistaken. If, like other eras, we believe things that will later seem ridiculous, I want to know what they are so that I, at least, can avoid believing them.

Third, I do it because it's good for the brain. To do good work you need a brain that can go anywhere. And you especially need a brain that's in the habit of going where it's not supposed to.

Great work tends to grow out of ideas that others have overlooked, and no idea is so overlooked as one that's unthinkable. Natural selection, for example. It's so simple. Why didn't anyone think of it before? Well, that is all too obvious. Darwin himself was careful to tiptoe around the implications of his theory. He wanted to spend his time thinking about biology, not arguing with people who accused him of being an atheist.

In the sciences, especially, it's a great advantage to be able to question assumptions. The m.o. of scientists, or at least of the good ones, is precisely that: look for places where conventional wisdom is broken, and then try to pry apart the cracks and see what's underneath. That's where new theories come from...

It's not only in the sciences that heresy pays off. In any competitive field, you can win big by seeing things that others daren't...

Training yourself to think unthinkable thoughts has advantages beyond the thoughts themselves. It's like stretching. When you stretch before running, you put your body into positions much more extreme than any it will assume during the run. If you can think things so outside the box that they'd make people's hair stand on end, you'll have no trouble with the small trips outside the box that people call innovative.

When you find something you can't say, what do you do with it? My advice is, don't say it...

The trouble with keeping your thoughts secret, though, is that you lose the advantages of discussion. Talking about an idea leads to more ideas. So the optimal plan, if you can manage it, is to have a few trusted friends you can speak openly to. This is not just a way to develop ideas; it's also a good rule of thumb for choosing friends. The people you can say heretical things to without getting jumped on are also the most interesting to know.

There's one more thing you can do, which is to give money to support the livelihoods of the handful of kamikaze pilots who think through in public the things you wonder about in private.

Like, to pick a random example, supporting the tax-deductible educational project I'm working on. Peter Brimelow writes:

SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT FOR STEVE SAILER FANS: Our regular Sunday night columnist Steve Sailer is one of the jewels of contemporary science journalism and it’s a mystery to me (and to him) why he’s not been stolen from VDARE.COM by the Mainstream Media. Well, actually, it’s not a mystery. Steve pushes the envelope too much. That’s why we’re here at VDARE.COM—and why we have to develop our own funding sources a.k.a you.

We want to commission Steve to begin a major project, separate from his columns, the results of which will be published in longer pieces, working towards a possible book. The topic: the implications of modern discoveries in the human biodiversity area for the survival and success of the American nation. Donations to this project will be tax-deductible. You can make credit card contributions here; or fax credit card details here; you can snail mail checks made out to "Lexington Research Institute" and marked on the memo line (lower left corner) “Biodiversity/ National Project” to the usual address:

Lexington Research Institute
P.O. Box 1195
Washington CT 06793

My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

Why the Japanese love robots

The Economist writes:

Foreign pundits keep telling Japan to do itself a favour and make better use of cheap imported labour. But the consensus among Japanese is that visions of a future in which immigrant workers live harmoniously and unobtrusively in Japan are pure fancy. Making humanoid robots is clearly the simple and practical way to go...

Although they are at ease with robots, many Japanese are not as comfortable around other people. That is especially true of foreigners. Immigrants cannot be programmed as robots can. You never know when they will do something spontaneous, ask an awkward question, or use the wrong honorific in conversation. But, even leaving foreigners out of it, being Japanese, and having always to watch what you say and do around others, is no picnic...

It is no surprise, therefore, that Japanese researchers are forging ahead with research on human interfaces. For many jobs, after all, lifelike features are superfluous. A robotic arm can gently help to lift and reposition hospital patients without being attached to a humanoid form. The same goes for robotic spoons that make it easier for the infirm to feed themselves, power suits that help lift heavy grocery bags, and a variety of machines that watch the house, vacuum the carpet and so on. Yet the demand for better robots in Japan goes far beyond such functionality. Many Japanese seem to like robot versions of living creatures precisely because they are different from the real thing...

Karl MacDorman, another researcher at Osaka, sees similar social forces at work. Interacting with other people can be difficult for the Japanese, he says, “because they always have to think about what the other person is feeling, and how what they say will affect the other person.” But it is impossible to embarrass a robot, or be embarrassed, by saying the wrong thing.

To understand how Japanese might find robots less intimidating than people, Mr MacDorman has been investigating eye movements, using headsets that monitor where subjects are looking. One oft-cited myth about Japanese, that they rarely make eye contact, is not really true. When answering questions put by another Japanese, Mr MacDorman's subjects made eye contact around 30% of the time. But Japanese subjects behave intriguingly when they talk to Mr Ishiguro's android,

The android's face has been modeled on that of a famous newsreader, and sophisticated actuators allow it to mimic her facial movements. When answering the android's questions, Mr MacDorman's Japanese subjects were much more likely to look it in the eye than they were a real person. Mr MacDorman wants to do more tests, but he surmises that the discomfort many Japanese feel when dealing with other people has something to do with his results, and that they are much more at ease when talking to an android...

What seems to set Japan apart from other countries is that few Japanese are all that worried about the effects that hordes of robots might have on its citizens. Nobody seems prepared to ask awkward questions about how it might turn out. If this bold social experiment produces lots of isolated people, there will of course be an outlet for their loneliness: they can confide in their robot pets and partners. Only in Japan could this be thought less risky than having a compassionate Filipina drop by for a chat.

It's nonsensical to think that shyness and discomfort in social settings is restricted to the Japanese -- it's just that Japan is one place where the shy are socially dominant and thus are more likely to get their way. That's why the Japanese had to evolve such elaborate forms of business entertaining, with professional geisha hostesses who have been expertly trained to make businessmen feel comfortable around other businessmen. That's also why Japanese salarymen do so much drinking together, to get get past their lack of ease when they are sober.

America, in contrast, is dominated by our Donald Trumps and our Oprahs, at considerable psychic cost to the shy.

For example, the Internet has allowed me to become a near recluse, which suits me, because in company I'm such a nice guy I can't stand myself. When I'm looking at people in person, I can't help worrying about their feelings. And I'm not terribly quick-witted in conversation, so I get pushed around by other people because I'm spending so much brainpower worrying about whether I'm hurting their feelings, while they are using their full brainpower to manipulate me into doing or agreeing with whatever they want. This wouldn't be so bad if the other person was typically smarter or more civic-minded than I am, but that's not always the case, so a part of me deep inside is yelling, "This is a waste" while I'm nodding and agreeing.

Nor would face-to-face interactions be so bad for me if I had much talent for charming people in person, but I don't. My big talent is for asking awkward, potentially disturbing questions about fundamental issues that other folks would rather not think about. This used to get me in trouble at parties all the time, when I'd strike up a conversation with some stranger about whatever he was interested in. At first, he'd be pleased to find somebody who knew enough about his specialty to ask intelligent questions, but within 15 minutes, I'd usually manage to come up with some subversive depth charge of a question calling into doubt something about his favorite thing that he'd never questioned. And that would put a chill on the whole conversation.

Now, with the Internet, I can engage in all the social intercourse I want with people who choose to play by my rules -- facts and logic uber alles. Meanwhile, when I do venture out into public, I am the now soul of placid geniality because my intellectual interests are fulfilled by the Internet, and I feel no need to push people I meet in person past their comfort levels.

The problem, of course, is making money without coming together in person. That's why all the venture capitalists funding cyberspace had to crowd onto Sand Hill Road in Palo Alto and all the entrepreneurs had to get offices near them. Face to face meetings are essential for doing business, both because they build trust and they build sympathy. They encourage other people to want to help you make money.

My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer


From my upcoming review in The American Conservative:

Conservatives have much reason to complain about the movie industry, but it could be worse. For example, the critics' darling is the morally irresponsible Quentin Tarantino, yet within Hollywood, he is treated as an amusing lightweight. Instead, the most prestigious and influential figure is the director, producer, and former executive Steven Spielberg.

An Eagle Scout who earned a remarkable 48 merit badges, Spielberg's lack of alienation from traditional American values has always disturbed the culturati, who assume that épater le bourgeois should be the essential goal of any artist. Indeed, Spielberg may have been the most effective critic of the sexual revolution. The son of divorced parents, Spielberg's favorite theme has been the pain caused children by their parents' self-indulgence. (He himself is on his second wife, actress Kate Capshaw, but perhaps his private life, like Ronald Reagan's, should be judged by Hollywood's standards.)

As Paul Johnson noted in his History of the Jews, it's common for assimilated, crowd-pleasing Jews to turn back toward Jewish questions as they age. This process has added depth to the later work of Spielberg, who at age 59 describes himself as a moderately observant Jew.

Spielberg's softheaded politics, while slightly right of center for Hollywood, are very much in the mainstream of Jewish liberalism. I've come to appreciate them more over the last few years as we've seen the damage done by the neoconservative and the neoliberal war hawks.

Spielberg might bear some indirect responsibility for America's pointless wars in Kosovo and Iraq. Few 1990s movies had more emotional influence on the Washington punditariat than "Schindler's List" and "Saving Private Ryan." The former made baby boomer policy wonks want to fight genocide like Schindler, and the latter left them feeling distressingly inferior to their fathers of the "The Greatest Generation." Thus, the neolibs and neocons went looking for their own Hitlers to slay. (Well, they didn't want to fight them personally, but they definitely wanted other people's sons to go smite Slobodan Milosevic and Saddam Hussein for them.)

My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

Alex Kranz outdebates Mark Steyn

From SteynOnline's Postbag, here's Kranz's letter and then Steyn's attempt to change the subject:

ALEX KRANZ: You topped off one of your best columns ever with a glaring mistake. You've always been apparently myopic about the dangers of American mass immigration - at least I've never seen you take it on; you shouldn't let your own status scare you, David Frum and John O'Sullivan, among others, are for immigration reform - but your prediction that Red America is simply going to outbreed the Europe-esque Blue America is mistaken, unless you, unlike Michael Barone or anyone I have yet to see try, can refute the following:

Notwithstanding the fantasies and spin of immigration enthusiasts on the Right, the largely Latino population of the immigrants, and even the other ethnic groups among them, vote mostly Democratic. And their birthrates are healthy. And it's likely that they, like the African-Americans of the immediate post-WWII period and the Muslim immigrants in Europe now, will give birth to a generation more alienated, and thus more Left, than they are now. The great American economy won't boost them into middle-class Redness because the endless importation of yet more workers will keep their services near-valueless.

So your theory of Religious Reds outbreeding Secular Blues only works if the massive influx of Religious Blues convert from strongly Blue to strongly Red. They are unlikely to do so any more than African-Americans (fairly religious Blues) have or will. (Or the very religious newcomers to Europe have or will.) If nothing else, their numbers are too great for them to assimilate to middle class America; they'll remain Latin Americans, sympathetic to socialism and unsympathetic to gringos.

There are greater, nonpartisan problems with current immigration - ethnic tension and balkanization, class stratification and poverty - but those are relevant too, as they are problems which empower the Left.

If the Left can just get through this current slump, and continue to convince Republicans that immigration is an unstoppable, beneficial force of nature and that anyway Latinos are natural conservatives, the Left's future in America is actually pretty sunny.

MARK REPLIES: Actually, I’ve written about US immigration on several occasions (here - for example), not least because of my own “status”, as you put it. Legal immigrants, who’ve paid thousands of dollars and filled in dozens of forms and pay their taxes and provide jobs for US citizens, are among the most hostile to illegal immigration. I am in favor of efficient fair legal immigration and utterly opposed to the ludicrous concept of the “undocumented”, as anyone who saw my speech at the Claremont Institute dinner earlier this month can testify.

However, in the end, everything is comparative: for all the problems you cite with unassimilated Hispanics and alienated blacks, they are as nothing to the degrees of unassimilation and alienation of third-generation European Muslims in France, Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands and Scandinavia. Pick the most disaffected black male you can imagine in the worst ghetto in America: whatever his pathologies, if you gave him ten million bucks he’d want to live pretty much like the average rich white guy lives. On the Continent, disaffected Muslims wish to create an entirely different society from the rich white folks’, and as their demographic and economic strength they will do so. No nation’s prospects are guaranteed but America has enormous advantages over Europe.

Wouldn't it be simpler, Mark, just to say, "Oh, yeah, I guess you're right about immigration and U.S. voting" instead of telling us, in effect, that a broken leg is worse than a broken toe and other things we already know? I'm sore about this because Steyn is specifically misquoting my work, so I'd like him to admit that he's been misleading readers, not change the subject like this.

Anyway, to move on to Steyn's argument about how smart we were to situate North America north of Latin America instead of north of the Muslim world, like those idiot Europeans did with their continent, the point I've been making for years is that we need to remember that when the Europeans invited in most of the ancestors of their current Muslims, from 1950-1973, it seemed like a good idea at the time. Ferocious Muslim fundamentalism appeared to be a dead letter back then. Heck, in the first half of the 1950s, Puerto Rican terrorism in the U.S. was a more pressing threat than Muslim terrorism was in Europe.

What we should have learned from history is that these things are highly cyclical, that groups with low status go through periods of anger and quietude. My guess is that we're a few years away from an upswing in Latino unrest in the U.S., as the "wind from South" blows north from Venezuela and Bolivia.

But, I don't know what exactly the future will bring, and neither does anybody else.

For example, back around World War I, Henry Ford imported a lot of Lebanese Muslims to work in his factory in Dearborn, Michigan. It also seemed like a good idea at the time. but, how did that work out? Surprisingly, from our perspective now, following the 2005 Muslim disasters in Europe, so far it has turned out not that badly. Why not? When Congress cut off mass immigration in 1924, that kept major problems from developing.

In contrast, Ford and other automakers also invited lots of Southern blacks to Detroit to work in their factories. How did that work out for Detroit? In the long, catastrophically. Detroit has never recovered from the black riot of 1967 and the long black crime wave.

All we can be fairly certain about is the overall historical pattern, which is that some members of groups toward the bottom of society get sore enough about their relative status now and then to lash out. What policy does that suggest? Most of all, prudence. Don't let in large numbers of people likely to wind up low on the totem pole. If you are currently letting them in, then stop it. Now.

My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

January 5, 2006

Vince Young vs. Reggie Bush

That would have been really cool -- Last night in the Rose Bowl, USC simply couldn't stop the running of Texas quarterback Vince Young, who averaged 10 yards per carry without any really long runs. The defensive player they assigned as the "spy" who was supposed to mirror whatever Young did on the field simply was not as good an athlete. In fact, in the second quarter, after Young broke the spy's tackle to rush for the first of his three touchdowns, we saw a frustrated USC coach Pete Carroll slap the poor spy's upside the helmet.

Now, in basketball, some of the most memorable moments come when one superstar is running amok offensively, and the other team assigns their superstar to guard him, even though they don't match up in terms of height. For example, in the 1979 NCAA regional final, Indiana State's Larry Bird was scoring at will over Arkansas' forwards and centers, until with 10 minutes to go, Arkansas put their best athlete, future NBA Defensive Player of the Year Sidney Moncrief on Bird even though Bird was a half foot taller. Moncrief shut Bird down. Indiana St. only won, setting up their famous encounter in the Final with Magic Johnson's Michigan St. because on the last play, one of Bird's teammates desperately drove the lane hoping to dump the ball off to Bird for the game-winning shot. But with Moncrief all over Bird, the ball-handler couldn't pass, got trapped in the air, and tossed up a prayer left-handed, which rattled around and somehow went in.

I've only seen this happen once in football since they went to separate offensive and defensive squads in the 1960s. It was late in the season in the late 1970s when an underdog team (perhaps SMU?) went up against highly ranked Arkansas, which had finished #2 in the country the year before. The underdog's quarterback was the classic small option quarterback, about 5-8 and 165, with not much arm, but a gutty runner and fa ine all around athlete, who had started for years on crummy teams. In what was the last game of his college career and likely his last football game ever, since he was too small for the pros, the underdog quarterback had the game of his life, throwing for four touchdowns and giving his team a 35-31 lead. But with two minutes left, mighty Arkansas' offense started rolling down the field. The quarterback begged his coach to be put in at free safety. The coach agreed, and the QB saved the game in the last minute by intercepting an Arkansas pass in the end zone.

So, what about the Rose Bowl? Did USC have anybody who was a comparable athlete to Vince Young that they could have put into the spy position on defense during Texas's final game-winning drive? Yes, unlike every other team in the country, USC did have somebody with equal or greater speed and reflexes, namely, the man who beat Young out for the Heisman, Reggie Bush. Pete Carroll had a month to prepare for Young, and came up with nothing. He could have used that time to drill Bush in playing defense.

Now that would have been a matchup!

My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

Well, at least one GOP operative is straight

Raw Story reports:

Michael Scanlon found himself at the center of one of the biggest political scandals in Washington history as a result of cheating and lying—but not the type involving the numerous clients he was paid to lobby Congress for, former coworkers and friends of his ex-fiancee say.

Scanlon was implicated in the Abramoff scandal by his former thirtysomething fiancee, Emily J. Miller, whom he met in the late 1990s while working as communications director for former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-TX), three former associates who worked with Scanlon at DeLay’s office said. Colleagues say Miller went to the FBI after Scanlon broke off their engagement and announced his intention to marry another woman...

In May 2004, Miller found herself at the center of attention when—while live on air—she ordered a cameraman for NBC’s Meet the Press to stop filming Colin Powell. A copy of the transcript shows Miller, who also used to work as an NBC staffer, as a brusque press aide. Powell eventually ordered that the interview continue and asked Miller to step aside.

What many people didn’t realize at the time, however, is that during the Powell interview Miller was upset because her fiancee, Michael Scanlon, had broken off their engagement, two of Miller’s former State Department co-workers said. While still engaged to Miller, Scanlon had started an affair with a manicurist

My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

Coach Brown, just let Vince Young win the game for you

Texas wins the college football national championship 41-38 over USC as quarterback Vince Young scrambled in on 4th and 5 for his third rushing touchdown with 19 seconds left. Young was 30 of 40 passing for 270 yards but was even more dangerous running the ball for 202 yards on 21 carries. I don't think it would have been close if Texas coach Mack Brown had just let Young run another dozen times. At 6-5 and 233, but fast and elusive, it was obvious from early in the game that USC just could not bring Young down.

A very good game, but offense has gotten so far out ahead of defense (Texas had 572 yards in total offense and USC 570) that too many games come down to who gets the ball last. Also, the field was a little too slippery to be a great game. I wonder if they mowed the field too short, like the fairway on a golf course.

My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

Doug Bandow on the opinion racket:

Having lost his job at Cato and his newspaper column for having taken Jack Abramoff's money to write op-eds endorsing libertarian views he already agreed with, Bandow reflects in the LA Times on the economics of opinion journalism:

I came to Washington with Ronald Reagan but left the administration early, frustrated by the domination of Republican apparatchiks. Bent on becoming an opinion journalist, I landed a syndicated column, which was a supportive home. But I could never live on what it paid alone. I affiliated with the Cato Institute, which always encouraged my work. But in the early years my wage there didn't cover my mortgage, let alone anything else.

So I created a patchwork of jobs. I ghostwrote Op-Ed articles, drafted political speeches, prepared internal corporate briefings and strategized business media campaigns. All the while, I also wrote commentary and opinion pieces.

Clearly, the ethical boundaries in all this aren't always obvious. Virtually everyone I worked with or wrote for had an ax to grind. Even think tanks and opinion journals have explicit ideological perspectives, which they support through fundraising. Certainly politicians, PR firms, companies and associations have explicit agendas. Although none of the people I worked with or for ever asked me to change a commentary I wrote, when you look back at it, conflicts were possible.

Who decides whether such a potential conflict is sufficiently direct to matter? In 1987, I was paid to help a presidential candidate develop a plan to privatize Social Security. Does that mean I can never have a legitimate opinion on the issue or that politician ever again? And what is an aspiring ideologue to do if he believes something in principle and the person or group willing to offer support to write about it has an economic interest in the outcome?

Many supposedly "objective" thinkers and "independent" scholar/experts these days have blogs or consulting gigs, or they are starting nonprofit Centers for the Study of …. Who funds their books, speeches or other endeavors? Often it's those with an interest in the outcome of a related debate. The number of folks underwriting the pursuit of pure knowledge can be counted on one hand, if not one finger.

Actually, I am lucky enough to be able to count far, far more. I want to thank everybody who has given to me over the last couple of years. And if one of your resolutions is to improve your tax situation early in 2006 rather than to waiting to the last moment, You can make tax deductible credit card contributions here; or fax credit card details here; you can snail checks here. (Please write in on fax or checks “Biodiversity/ National Project" on the memo line in the lower left corner of check.)

My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

Twelve coal miners, RIP

There used to be a huge number of coal miners and a huge number of fatalities, but United Mine Workers leader John L. Lewis led strikes to drive up wages so high that mine owners heavily mechanized the business. When warned that high wages would drive down the number of jobs, Lewis replied, good, it's a crummy job and if my guys make enough money to educate their kids won't have to work in the mines, we all win.

My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

Readers on College

Readers on College: Readers respond to my posting on whether the 58%-42% imbalance in favor of girls over boys in college is caused by too few boys or too many girls in higher education:

My impression is that so-called pink-collar jobs (secretary, physician's assistant, even cosmetologist) frequently require at least some college, because someone who has not gone to any college these days is presumed to be functionally illiterate, while many blue-collar jobs (garbage collector, construction worker, fry cook) do not.

As for males achieving their potential: I admit to being a real elitist on this question. It doesn't matter much for civilization what most people do; what matters is what the elite do. (I seem to recall you citing a paper by Le Griffe du Lion attempting to prove something similar using statistical info on IQ distributions, something about "smart fractions" rather than average IQ being the key predictor of national GDP.) Our cognitive elites are very achievement-oriented. However, at least judging from the quality of the arts and the preferred career choices of said elites (myself unfortunately included) it seems like today's elites are more status-conscious and security-conscious, and less willing to bet it all for honor or glory, than was probably true in the West's heyday. This is almost certainly due in part to the increasing stratification of society by SAT score, which teaches youngsters that the most important thing is to jump through hoops set up by adults. The Chinese organized their civilization around test-taking over 2000 years ago, and as our civilization has begun to do the same we are getting more Chinese: more conformist and status-conscious, less Romantic and honor-conscious.


(1) Universities are no longer “marriage markets.” I believe (but don’t have the stats to support it) that few persons are marrying in their college years, and that after graduating, few persons will maintain contact with their college friends. Most college educated persons are probably marrying in their mid to late 20s, well after graduation.

In some ways, parents see college as an anti-marriage market that will keep their daughters from making an immature choice of man too young. Professional and grad schools are then seen as the real marriage markets.

This all ties into the popularity among upscale parents of pushing their daughters into team sports, even though some must at least suspect that team sports encourage lesbianism in girls. But, then, they must reason, if our daughter is a Lesbian Until Graduation, at least she's not getting pregnant and marrying some doofus. (Of course, maybe she won't stop being a lesbian until well after graduation? And will hanging around with men-hating lesbian-feminists during her formative years make her a more attractive wife later on? Difficult questions, but not ones you'll see addressed in the media.)

A reader responds:

*Girl athletes and lesbianism: I think this is a red herring. From my experience with the East Coast meritocratic elite, the girl athletes are dating guy athletes, and lesbianism has nothing to do with elite parents' calculations: they (A) want their daughter to get into a good college so she can have a good career and meet a successful man, and (B) do NOT want their daughters to become lesbians. Yes these people are less anti-lesbian than the rest of America but it is still a stigmatized group. You've done quite a bit of work on liberal hypocrisy. This is another instance of it. Ever notice how the female athletes go into less brawny sports like lacrosse, soccer, volleyball rather than bone-crunching sports like football? The REAL risk of 'switching teams' comes with the politically-active intellectual-types. The main effect, I think, is to annoy male nerds by politicizing nerdy women: instead of a nice quiet librarian type with five cats who likes literature like fifty years ago, you have an activist who sees oppression in the design of a coffee cup. But maybe these are different personality types anyway and you are just hearing me complain. ;) One of these days you ought to look into the connection between nerdy women (we're broadening the definition of nerd past sciences here, if you have the same complement of genes that gives you a nerd but in a girl, you must have something) and feminism.


I think the best explanation here is pure economics, in two parts:

a. Men have better earning prospects right out of high school than women do.

b. Women benefit a lot more than men from marrying up the socioeconomic ladder.

And you can add to that the big male variation in rates of violence. College graduates are a lot less likely to beat their wives. Also, the divorce rate has recently dropped significantly among the college educated, although some of that is due to the older ages of first marriage among the well-educated -- by the time the seven year itch strikes, they're too wrinkly to do much about it, so they are more likely to stay married.


The sort of jobs that middle class women tend to want require a B.A., whereas men have lots of careers which don't require college. The smarter guys (and some gals too) will want a B.S., so, they'll go. So I'm not including them. I think the difference comes in the marginal, average-intelligence kids; those who (in my day) were C+ students. These, if women, will aspire to staff positions in the welfare state. Government jobs if possible, or else similar jobs with very large companies. Jobs with security, which women are programmed to want. The C+ men will be thinking about the military, or going into blue-collar service trades, like plumbing. Trade school work. Practical and useful things.

If I am right about this, you should see a lot more females getting B.A.s (which don't prepare you for anything in particular, but are credential enough for all big companies), and a lot more males getting B.S.s (which actually require brains and work, at least at many schools).

Anybody know the numbers on gender gaps in BAs and BSs?

UPDATED: A sociologist writes:

According to the National Center for Educational Statistics, females graduate with less than 50 percent of degrees in only five areas: agricultural and natural resources (45%), computer information sciences (28%), math (48%), engineering (20%--damn those sexist math and engineering departments!), and physical sciences (41%). Business management is evenly split. There is no doubt that females gravitate toward BA degrees.


I read somewhere that the U.S. spent roughly 10% of it's GDP on "education" in 2005. Your article brings to mind two questions: 1) how many resources does this country waste by sending too many women to higher ed and 2) how are these wasted resources compounded by what happens to the male that doesn't get into school.

Case in point: law school. There are roughly 200 accredited law schools in the U.S. Most law schools admit about 275-300 students a year. This doesn't change much. 55% of the grads are women. I can't tell you how many times in law school I quietly heard women say "God....I can't imagine doing this much longer than 5 years after I get out." Uh-huh. Exactly.

If higher education is pursued in sizable part as the pursuit of valuable markers in the marriage market, then it has aspects of being a wasteful arms race. Wouldn't there be some cheaper way for young people to certify themselves as good marriage material without dithering years and small fortunes away?


There is another effect that the heavy feminization of colleges would have but doesn't seem to be mentioned yet. It should be obvious to anyone who has read "I am Charlotte Simmons".

When women are a minority, their basic sociobiological strategy of requiring commitment for sex works very well. The men have to compete for women in women's terms. And even if some women would desire casual sex, short-term relationships and one-night stands, they know that if they appear to be looking and available, they will immediately get dozens of hopeful men hitting on them. Even if they were secure in their physical safety, it is still emotionally draining to constantly see those looks on all those men's faces and keep turning down losers and low-status men. As a result, to an outside observer, the women who are a minority would appear to have almost no sex drive at all, and conservatives and traditionalists are happy how virtuously everyone behaves: women by choice, men by necessity.

However, when women become a significant majority, the same strategy no longer works at all. For some mysterious reason, men don't seem very interested in commitment, because there is now more casual sex available to them, since women are the constraining factor on how much casual sex takes place. When they are a majority, women find themselves in an unnatural situation in which they have to compete with other women for the commitment of good males. And there are not too many ways that this competition can take place: it is a race to the bottom on who puts out the easiest. The other forms of this competition are also necessarily about being pleasant to men.

For this reason, I would bet that you won't find much support for equalizing the sex ratio among the men who are currently in college. They are quite happy about the current situation, especially if they are at least little athletic in addition to being brainy. Besides, most college men are quite happy to sacrifice their blue-collar bound brothers since they don't remember them too fondly from the high school.

Last, even though women are a majority, it's not as big a problem as it sounds since they tend to populate the fluffier fields whereas men tend to major in the reality-based fields. These men don't have to suffer from feminism and other leftism nearly as much as you would expect from the overall numbers, since feminists are actually pretty rare in reality-based fields that have objective standards. (Since feminism is essentially an extreme form of social constructionism, its mindset is incompatible with the mindset needed in, say, the hard sciences.)

My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

January 4, 2006

Sportswriter says coach Joe Paterno should retire because he's in danger of becoming unboring

In tonight's Orange Bowl, #3-ranked Penn State is guided by 79-year-old coaching legend Joe Paterno. Like many old coots, as Paterno has aged , his public statements have become less bland. In Slate, a sportswriter says he should retire fast before he says something really interesting:

This Old Coach
Why Joe Paterno should hang it up.
By Darren Everson

Baiting the refs might make fans and the media think you're nuts, but it probably won't get you fired. Talking off the cuff about race is another thing. Paterno nearly had an "Al Campanis moment" this fall when he defended fellow coach Fisher DeBerry. The Air Force coach got some unwelcome attention when he said his team got blown out by TCU because they "had a lot more Afro-American players than we did and they ran a lot faster than we did." In defending DeBerry, Paterno nearly repeated his remarks. "The black athlete has made a big difference," he said. "They have changed the whole tempo of the game. Black athletes have just done a great job as athletes and as people in turning the game around." While it seems clear that Paterno's intentions were good, the coach did go right up to the line of social acceptability.

Tell me again why sportswriters appointed themselves the guardians of social acceptability? Why do they prefer their subjects to be politically correct bores?

My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

Too few males in college or too many females?

In the Weekly Standard, Melana Zyla Vickers writes:

At colleges across the country, 58 women will enroll as freshmen for every 42 men. And as the class of 2010 proceeds toward graduation, the male numbers will dwindle. Because more men than women drop out, the ratio after four years will be 60--40, according to projections by the Department of Education.

The problem isn't new-women bachelor's degree--earners first outstripped men in 1982. But the gap, which remained modest for some time, is widening. More and more girls are graduating from high school and following through on their college ambitions, while boys are failing to keep pace and, by some measures, losing ground.

Underperformance in education is no longer a problem confined to black males, Hispanic males, or even poor whites. In 2004, the nation's middle--income, white undergraduate population was 57 percent female. Even among white undergraduates with family incomes of $70,000 and higher, the balance tipped in 2000 to 52 percent female.

One of the oft-forgotten rules of history is that the fate of a society's males determines the fate of the society. In the big picture, women's lives vary much less than men's lives. A culture in which men achieve at less than their full potential will lag behind one in which women achieve at less than their full potential.

For example, I was watching the Vienna Philharmonic on New Year's Day on TV. They had one woman musician. Yet, despite widespread employment discrimination against women of this sort, Vienna is a pretty nice place. In East St. Louis, women hold most of the jobs, but it's not a nice place.

That said, I'm wondering whether this is quite as big a problem as it seems, or if the real problem is that too many none-too-bright girls are going to college these days. Anybody have any informative statistics on this?

A college professor writes:

One way to look at the issue of whether there are a lot of dull girls attending college is to compare their SAT scores with male students. For 2005, the mean score was 1009 for girls and 1051 for guys. If we want to remove the male math advantage, we can look at just the verbal scores: 505 for females and 513 for males. It might be that, since girls are more likely to be conformists, borderline cases will go to college while males will ignore mom and dad's wishes.

In my classes, the student with the highest grade is usually female, but the smartest student is more often male. An example of the evidence of this is that more than half of the most insightful comments made during class discussion are made by guys. And this is not because they speak up more often: they do not. The guys fail to earn the highest grade because they are lazier, less responsible, or less conformist. My impression is that, as a group, the girls are a little less intelligent but are definitely more responsible.

One issue with using SAT scores is that the percentage of 17 years olds taking the SAT changes over time, which makes comparing scores over time or between demographic groups like boys and girls tricky.

A reader writes:

It's not a statistic, but in one of those small "meetings-I-will-never-forget" (about some aspect of undergrad ed/recruitment/retention), I have a striking memory of the dean of engineering of one of the U. of California campuses saying, "Of course, we're basically a marriage market and baby sitting service." Nobody contradicted him...

He might be on to something. Girls are attending the "marriage market", regardless of whether they profit directly from college (if nothing else, it's a great place to meet lots of young people in a generally non-threatening environment).

It can make sense for parents to subsidize their daughters to seemingly waste a few years in college in the hopes that they'll develop a taste for college men, which should keep them from falling for losers who will hit them.

As regards babysitting, I went and got an MBA directly after college largely because I wasn't mature enough at age 21 to get through a job interview. By 23, however, I had become the devastatingly suave man of affairs that you all know and hold in awe. Or, at least, I'd grown up enough to get a job offer. (Now, however, it's practically impossible to attend a top MBA school at age 21 because the schools have figured out that they are evaluated not on the value they add, if any, but on the starting salaries of their graduates. Thus, the ideal applicant is a 28 year old with six years of work experience making $85,000. Two years and $90,000 in tuition and $120,000 in lost salary later, he can get a job at a $115,000 and everybody is impressed with how rich the school made him. )

Another side of this is that universities might be becoming dangerously close to just places where people unemployed or not yet in the workforce are "buffered". Kind of welfare for the upper half of the curve. How many of these ugrads are re-entrant middle-aged women studying things such as industrial design? (I've seen a lot, most will never end up doing what they are studying, but sooner or later they often end up with some sort of job, you can't say that going to school really hurt anything, and you get access to a lot of helpful services...)

In this scenario, we should all always be students (there's all that talk about lifelong education...). Then when we are out of work, we can just be "full-time" students! The universities love this concept, non-stop never ending student "churn"!

My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

Mark Steyn's telltale mistake

Mark Steyn's telltale mistake: In The New Criterion (and reprinted on the WSJ's OpinionJournal.com site), Steyn has an article on his favorite topic:

"It's the Demography, Stupid"
The real reason the West is in danger of extinction." ...

The design flaw of the secular social-democratic state is that it requires a religious-society birthrate to sustain it. Post-Christian hyperrationalism is, in the objective sense, a lot less rational than Catholicism or Mormonism. Indeed, in its reliance on immigration to ensure its future, the European Union has adopted a 21st-century variation on the strategy of the Shakers, who were forbidden from reproducing and thus could increase their numbers only by conversion.

Much of it is quite good, although Steyn's schadenfreude at the troubles of those awful socialist Europeans is wearying. but Mr. Steyn misleads when he writes:

"In America, demographic trends suggest that the blue states ought to apply for honorary membership of the EU: in the 2004 election, John Kerry won the 16 [states] with the lowest birthrates; George W. Bush took 25 of the 26 states with the highest."

I was the first to publish these statistics (in my article "Baby Gap" in the December 20, 2004 issue of "The American Conservative"), but Mr. Steyn is distorting what I wrote, which was:

Bush carried the 19 states with the highest white fertility (just as he did in 2000), and 25 out of the top 26, with highly unionized Michigan being the one blue exception to the rule... In sharp contrast, Kerry won the 16 states at the bottom of the list, with the Democrats’ anchor states of California (1.65) and New York (1.72) having quite infertile whites.

Notice the difference? It's just one word, "white" (or to be technical, "non-Hispanic white"), but it's a big one.

Those numbers do not refer, as Mr. Steyn implies, to the "total fertility" rate among all women in the state, but just to the non-Hispanic white women. The correlation between white fertility and Bush's share of the vote was an extraordinary r-squared = 74%, but the correlation between overall fertility and Bush's performance was a significantly lower r-squared = 37%.

Among all ethnicities, Kerry won only 11 of the 16 states with the lowest total fertility rates, while Bush won 16 of the 19 most fertile states, and Bush's losses included the big states of California and Illinois.

This distinction has important implications for GOP strategists because immigration, especially of Hispanics, is driving up both the birthrates and the Democrats' share of the vote in many states. For example, in California, the 800 pound gorilla of the Electoral College, which voted Republican in 9 Presidential elections out of 10 from 1952 through 1988, but has gone solidly Democratic in the last four contests, as much of the state's Republican base was replaced in the 1990s by strongly Democratic immigrants.

A number of narrowly Republican states such as New Mexico, Nevada, Arizona, and Colorado are likely to be driven into the blue columns in future elections by immigration, with North Carolina and Georgia at risk farther off in the future. Republicans thrive in states with what I call "affordable family formation," where non-Hispanic white people can afford to get married and have several children because houses with yards are cheap and public schools aren't inundated with poor students, and thus they become more supportive of the GOP's family values platform. It's nuts for President Bush (and Steyn) to support the Californication of more traditionally Red states through mass immigration.

This is characteristic of Steyn's flippant disingenuousness about the threats immigration poses to America. Steyn asks:

Will Japan be an economic powerhouse if it's populated by Koreans and Filipinos? Very possibly. Will Germany if it's populated by Algerians? That's a trickier proposition.

Okay, so will the United States be an economic powerhouse if it's populated by Latin Americans? Exactly how many economic powerhouses have Latin Americans run? That would seem to be another tricky proposition, but it's the kind of question that apparently never occurs to Steyn, who lives in a small town in New Hampshire. I could see America continuing on at a high rate of prosperity for awhile, but losing its economic dynamism as the culture comes to be dominated by a people who have never shown much interest in scientific, technological, or economic progress.

The more fundamental point is that Steyn is badly misreading human nature if he thinks that a people reason like this, "Oh, well, our descendents will be gone, but at least our territory will be inhabited by somebody else's descendents who will make lots of money off living here, and, really, isn't that all the same thing, so nothing to frown about!" Surely, Steyn will have noticed that from 132 AD to 1947 AD, Jews did not think that way about the Holy Land. He might even have noticed that the Preamble to the U.S. Constitution announces that the purpose of the document is to " secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity," not to somebody else's Posterity.

I was thinking of Steyn in particular when I wrote in The American Conservative about the smug American reactions to the French riots:

Many Americans are congratulating themselves for their brilliance in choosing to locate their continent north of a huge supply of unskilled Latin Americans rather than north of a huge supply of unskilled Muslims, like those idiot Europeans did.

Later, Steyn bloviates:

The refined antennae of Western liberals mean that whenever one raises the question of whether there will be any Italians living in the geographical zone marked as Italy a generation or three hence, they cry, "Racism!" To fret about what proportion of the population is "white" is grotesque and inappropriate. But it's not about race, it's about culture. If 100% of your population believes in liberal pluralist democracy, it doesn't matter whether 70% of them are "white" or only 5% are.

Thank God we have those neuronal thoughtwave detectors mounted on the Mexican border making sure that 100% of all the illegal immigrants believe in "liberal pluralist democracy!" Of course, considering the superb track record Latin Americans have at running their own "liberal pluralist democracies," we can sleep well at night knowing that a flood of their least educated citizens into our country can only strengthen America's commitment to our traditional values.

You'll notice that Steyn is 100% against multiculturalism, but 100% for pluralism (at least in theory -- in practice, he lives in rural New Hampshire). Of course, much of the iMuslim mmigration into Europe came in the 1950s through 1973, before the word "multiculturalism" was widely heard. The highest term of praise then was "pluralism," which, in practice, meant immigration. You'll note (but Steyn won't) that the one Western European country that doesn't have a Muslim problem is the one that doesn't like pluralism or immigration: Finland.

My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

Marion Barry and me: Great minds think alike

Having argued for years that mid-January was a dumb time for the Martin Luther King holiday, I was pleased to see support for my view from former Washington D.C. mayor Marion Barry, who was definitely one of the most fun mayors this country has had (assuming you didn't have to live in his city), and he knows that the dead of winter is not a fun time for MLK day. The Washington Post reports:

A committee appointed by D.C. Council member Marion Barry has moved the District's annual Martin Luther King Jr. parade from its traditional date near King's birthday in wintry January to the warmer month of April, when the civil rights leader was assassinated. This year, according to Barry's office, the parade will be held April 1 -- April Fool's Day...

Chuck Bowens, a member of the parade committee, said the group voted unanimously last month to postpone the parade because the members were worried about subjecting children and "senior VIPs" such as Wilhelmina Rolark and Barry himself to January's often frigid weather. Last year, days after Barry was hospitalized for flulike symptoms, the parade was canceled at the last minute because of plunging temperatures.

At a meeting just before Christmas, Bowens said, the parade committee began discussing last year's cancellation and "started talking about, 'What's the rain date?' And someone said, 'What about the date of King's death? That's in warm weather.' And it was kind of like a veil being lifted, and the whole discussion turned toward that."...

Reaction to the change has been fast and, mostly, furious... Aside from the disrespectful symbolism of remembering King on April Fool's Day, Pannell said, it makes no sense to hold a parade that marks King's murder. "If you want to commemorate an assassination, that should be something that is done with some solemnity," Pannell said. "You don't commemorate a person's assassination with marching bands."

Well, that's why I've suggested moving it to August, a month crying out for a holiday, which could commemorate Martin Luther King's "I Have a Dream" speech on August 28, 1963.

My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

January 2, 2006

Feminist Corruption

Early in 2005, I wrote in The American Conservative about the financial conflicts of interest and web of backscratching among Harvard President Larry Summers's most enraged feminist critics. After reviewing MIT professor Nancy Hopkins's conflict of interest, I turned to a second case that wasn't mentioned anywhere else in the voluminous commentary on Summers's remarks on why science and engineering departments at Harvard are heavily male:

Similarly, Denice D. Denton was celebrated for standing up to Summers to, in her words, "speak truth to power." This heroic tableau of the humble, no-doubt-discriminated-against woman engineering professor daring to defy the mighty male university president lost some luster when it emerged that Denton was UC Santa Cruz's chancellor-designate at $275,000 annually. One college supremo attempting to intimidate another one into not mentioning inconvenient facts is not what most people visualize as speaking truth to power.

A few days later, Tanya Schevitz reported in the San Francisco Chronicle on how Denton plays the game. The headline read, "UC hires partner of chancellor: creates $192,000 post for Santa Cruz chief's lesbian lover." ...

But Denton had a powerful defender in the woman scientist who had formerly headed UC Santa Cruz. M.R.C. Greenwood praised UCSC's two-for-the-price-of-three deal for the lesbian academics as the cost of gender diversity: UCSC "should be commended for attracting and hiring two very qualified female engineers."

Greenwood herself had just moved up to provost of the UC system, at $380,000 per year, almost $100,000 more than the man she replaced. Moreover, she had quietly brought with her a female scientist friend from Santa Cruz to fill the novel post of "Executive Faculty Associate to the Provost."

Are you noticing a pattern here?

Schevitz now reports on the latest on Greenwood:

The University of California's former No. 2 official, who resigned under a cloud last month, violated conflict-of-interest rules by helping to create a management job for a friend with whom she owned rental property, a UC investigation concluded Wednesday.

In addition, UC investigators found that a subordinate for the former official, ex-Provost M.R.C. Greenwood, had improperly helped create an internship for Greenwood's son, though they couldn't find evidence he had done so at Greenwood's direction...

UC said it started the investigation after The Chronicle asked about Greenwood's role in the hiring of two people: her friend and business partner, Lynda Goff, for a job at UC's headquarters, and Greenwood's son, James Greenwood, for a midcareer internship at UC Merced.

But UC won't take any action against Greenwood, 62, as a result of the investigation. In fact, a separation agreement that Greenwood and UC agreed to in November, a month before the investigation was completed, grants the former No. 2 official a 15-month leave at $301,840 a year. The money is a combination of the salary she earned as provost and in her previous job as UC Santa Cruz chancellor.

UC also promised Greenwood the right to return after her leave to UC Davis, where she worked years earlier, as a tenured professor of nutrition and internal medicine earning $163,800. In addition, UC agreed to give her $100,000 in research funding.

Sheldon Steinbach, vice president and general counsel with the American Council on Education in Washington, D.C., said it was "highly unusual" for the university not to have waited until the investigation was complete before deciding the terms of Greenwood's departure.

"This would seem indeed peculiar when you have mounting evidence of potential violations of university regulations to conclude a settlement prior to a determination of a full investigation," Steinbach said. "It seems at variance with common practice." ...

The latest revelations come on the heels of reports in The Chronicle that UC gave employees hundreds of millions of dollars in hidden pay and perks in addition to salaries and overtime. The state Legislature, which oversees a significant portion of UC's funding, is planning to hold hearings early next year into the university's compensation practices.

In the report released Wednesday, UC's general counsel said Greenwood should have recused herself from helping to promote Goff, 56, a UC Santa Cruz administrator who owned rental property with Greenwood in Davis.

Two months after Greenwood started as provost in April 2004, she hired Goff as an executive faculty associate. Then in August 2004, she hired Goff for a yearlong position in academic affairs with a $192,100 salary, a $44,300 raise from her pay at Santa Cruz.

In addition, the offer included a faculty relocation allowance of $50,000 and a low-interest housing loan if Goff were to take a permanent appointment in UC's academic affairs office. She eventually did so.

This past August, Greenwood offered Goff a permanent position as director of UC's new Science and Math Initiative, reporting to her. Goff took the job.

"Given their business relationship, Dr. Greenwood should not have participated in any way in decisions respecting Dr. Goff's employment," the UC report said.

Did there joint ownership of property reflect merely a business relationship?

In the Santa Cruz Sentinel, one Conn Hallinan, lecturer in journalism at UC Santa Cruz, was not pleased:

'Integrity in hiring? UC? An oxymoron. What happened with Goff and Greenwood is part of a pattern I call "academic corruption." The rationale is that these people could make so much more money working for some private university or private industry. I don't see either beating a path to their doors.

They have well-paid jobs in the nicest state in the union, and we have to give them $70,000 to move 72 miles? We have to invent jobs for their kids or friends? We give them low-interest loans while students burden themselves with crushing debt at high interest in overcrowded classes that make it almost impossible to graduate in four years? We cut programs and services so some kid of a vice provost can get a made-up internship that cost $5,000 less than our entire journalism program? ...

The corruption is not only at the level of the President's Office, it is part of the structure of the university, and the Regents are no better. The only reason they are annoyed is they got sidelined on all of this. But letting the Regents investigate this all is like recruiting the foxes to find out who has been pinching chickens. This was stealing taxpayers' money, plain and simple. You restore integrity by ending the skull-and-bones style of running a great public university and give it back to the people who send their children there.'

Of course, Larry Summers quickly backed down under pressure from these women, and promised $50 million to fund additional feminist corruption.

My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer