June 10, 2009

Sotomayor on affirmative action

From the New York Times:
Judge Sonia Sotomayor once described herself as “a product of affirmative action” who was admitted to two Ivy League schools despite scoring lower on standardized tests than many classmates, which she attributed to “cultural biases” that are “built into testing.”

On another occasion, she aligned with conservatives who take a limited view of when international law can be enforced in American courts. But she criticized conservative objections to recent Supreme Court rulings that mention foreign law as being based on a “misunderstanding.”

Those comments were among a trove of videos dating back nearly 25 years that shed new light on Judge Sotomayor’s views. She provided the videos to the Senate Judiciary Committee last week as it prepares for her Supreme Court confirmation hearing next month.

The clips include lengthy remarks about her experiences as an “affirmative action baby” whose lower test scores were overlooked by admissions committees at Princeton University and Yale Law School because, she said, she is Hispanic and had grown up in poor circumstances.

“If we had gone through the traditional numbers route of those institutions, it would have been highly questionable if I would have been accepted,” she said on a panel of three female judges from New York who were discussing women in the judiciary. The video is dated “early 1990s” in Senate records.

Her comments came in the context of explaining why she thought it was “critical that we promote diversity” by appointing more women and members of minorities as judges, and they provoked objections among other panelists who pointed out that she had graduated summa cum laude from Princeton and been an editor on Yale’s law journal.

But Judge Sotomayor insisted that her test scores were sub-par — “though not so far off the mark that I wasn’t able to succeed at those institutions.” Her scores have not been made public.

“With my academic achievement in high school, I was accepted rather readily at Princeton and equally as fast at Yale, but my test scores were not comparable to that of my classmates,” she said. “And that’s been shown by statistics, there are reasons for that. There are cultural biases built into testing, and that was one of the motivations for the concept of affirmative action to try to balance out those effects.”

Judge Sotomayor’s approach to affirmative action has been the subject of intense scrutiny. Conservatives have criticized her remarks in speeches that her personal experiences will influence her judging, and they have focused on her vote to uphold a decision by New Haven to throw out results from a firefighters’ exam because not enough members of minorities scored well.

In the program, Judge Sotomayor also rejected the proposition that minorities must become advocates of “selection by merit alone.” She said diversity improved the legal system — like having a Hispanic judge in a case where a litigant and his family is Hispanic, and who can translate what is happening into Spanish.

“Since I have difficulty defining merit and what merit alone means, and in any context, whether it’s judicial or otherwise, I accept that different experiences in and of itself, bring merit to the system,” she said, adding, “I think it brings to the system more of a sense of fairness when these litigants see people like myself on the bench.”

Judge Sotomayor also mentioned her personal involvement in challenging testing in a 1994 interview. Reflecting on her 12 years on the board of the Puerto Rican Legal Defense Fund before she became a judge, she recalled helping change its policy focus from voting rights and bilingual education to economic issues, like “cases attacking civil service testing and issues of union admissions.”

So, Judge Sotomayor appears to be basically a hard-working grind. Obama wanted a liberal female Hispanic, so he had to take what he could get. There just aren't that many Wise Latinas out there (if there were, they wouldn't need affirmative action to avoid disparate impact), so Obama got stuck with the Second Coming of Harriet Miers.

But it's not as if brilliance is a necessity for being on the Supreme Court. It's more helpful lower down the hierarchy where you have to explain yourself well in the hopes that the Supreme Court will like your reasoning. Once you are a Supreme, however, you don't have to think cogently, you just have to vote. Sandra Day O'Connor's majority ruling in the Grutter affirmative action case is inane, but, so what? O'Connor's maunderings are the law of the land.

At age 54, Sotomayor's undoubtedly got more on the ball cognitively than 89-year-old liberal Justice John Paul Stevens. His opinion in Johnson v. California showed him to be an elderly fool. But so what if Stevens is 89? He's on the Supreme Court, ain't he? Stevens' vote counts just as much as that of somebody not in his dotage.

Obviously, Sotomayor was no more able to vote objectively on Ricci than Michelle Obama would have been. Sotomayor's ego, personal and ethnic, is tied up in her remaining convinced, against the overwhelming weight of evidence, that there must be "cultural biases built into testing." If not, how else could tests have disparate impact? (The only other logical possibility would be too horrible to contemplate.)

But once you make it on the Supreme Court, little things like bias and brains are insignificant. When you are a Supreme, we're talking Who? Whom? time now.

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

98 comments:

Melykin said...

“If we had gone through the traditional numbers route of those institutions, it would have been highly questionable if I would have been accepted,”

Why is she drawing attention to this embarrassing fact? If I were her I'd feel ashamed. That stuff about "cultural bias" is nonsense. How, for example, can algebra and trigonometry be culturally biased?

I'm afraid I feel less respect for her now, after reading this. At least Obama got into Columbia and Harvard on his own merit, and not by pulling the race card.

LomaAlta said...

Did she ever consider her IQ was what caused the lower test scores?

It would be nice to show a table of IQ for diferrent countries and races again.

Lazard said...

After reading this blog entry you really know what it feels like to live in a culture that has been cracked by Marxists: The truth is bludgeoned at every turn. All standards and norms are adulterated or turned upside down. Imagine the pain of the typical Russian born in 1900 and unlucky enough to live their entire adult life under the madness of the Soviet regime.

I am sure that the average blue state liberal types who are going along with the program in America today are not going to wake up until a few moments before they are tossed into the lime pit or labor camp by their own leaders (in the great Soviet tradition).

Color blind society? Ha. Viva la Raza.

Meritocracy? Another term for Marxist revolution.

green mamba said...

Oy vey.

Cultural biases? What would those be exactly?

She's as bad as we suspected and feared.

OneSTDV said...

"That stuff about "cultural bias" is nonsense."

For years, standardized testing opponents have been grousing about "cultural bias". Of course, what they actually mean is NAMs score worse and we can't think of any legitimate reason why (or we won't allow ourselves to).

The Collegeboard and other institutions that make the tests have done some things in order to lessen this "cultural bias". One of the most hilarious tweaks has been the inclusion of "ethnic" names. These names are from a recent LSAT exam:

Mendel, Nastassia, Jerome, Juanita, Yolanda

Also, I'd estimate about 80% of standardized tests with a reading comprehension section contain a flattering article about black history.

jody said...

when non-whites are underrepresented, it's discrimination. when non-whites are overrepresented, it's merit!

a permanent feature of american society, i'm thinking.

when whites are outnumbered, around 2030 or so, they will not be permitted the identity politics legal recourse that non-whites instantly go to today.

i've posted before about the absolutely certain discrimination that white athletes face in american football. they will never, ever be allowed legal action on the matter. it will just be "It's based on merit, case dismissed," if they even try.

Soul Searcher said...

It seems the more information that comes forth about Sotomayor, the more disturbing the potential questions about her possible bias become if she is in fact installed on the Supreme Court.

What's stranger to me is that the New York Times so forthrightly made the "accusation" printed within this article. The Grey Lady has never had qualms over the shading or the outright falsification of truth -- see their refusal to document that the NHFD actually chose not to validate the disputed exams -- so I'm guessing that affirmative action was quite a theme in the submitted videos of her speeches, too big of one for them to deny forthcoming Republican attacks, so the liberal intelligentsia moved to pre-empt.

It's terrifying how galling that same disingenuousness is sometimes. Liberals support affirmative action, yet in every case they continually insist that it is racist question to ask whether or not some championed candidate actually benefited from those policies, which ironically would be in effect a tacit criticism of them if no one actually did so. And of course, since the reactionary denial was so virulent in this case, it undoubtedly had to be true. Sad yet instructive.

bill clinton said...

when she was first announced we were told about the summa cum laude degree which theoretically marked her best of the best at a top ivy school. huzzah!

but we knew something wasn't right when the first video appeared. come on. sorry to judge a book by its cover but very high iq people don't comport themselves or speak like sotomayor does. we do not get a high wattage impression from this woman's demeanor or verbal output. she has more like a high school principal level of intellect.

without aa it takes at least 130 iq to graduate summa at the very top schools. probably more like 140. the sotomayor iq is probably around 115. that is why she has a legal rep for bullying instead of deep thought on the bench. and that is why she falls back on racial pedigree of course. she and michelle are birds of a feather. did michelle actually pick her?

Anonymous said...

Steve, you're on the west coast and rarely comment about Euro affairs. But there was recently a big $$$ scandal and an election in the UK: the British equivalent of "democrats" got their asses handed to them.

Now the White House is pondering the California tax revolt; the "throw the bums out" revolt in the UK; and the New York State Republican coup.

All of this means no immigration reform legislation spearheaded by Obama this year because the 2010 election cycle is already too close for comfort: instead he's giving the Hispanics the Sotomayor nomination as a bone.

Prediction (based on current trends and Denninger web site info): 2010 will be the biggest reversal in Congress in the history of America: Blue staters like to watch and listen to the charismatic Obama but they will throw local coattail Democrats to the wolves.

OneSTDV said...

"i've posted before about the absolutely certain discrimination that white athletes face in american football."

This sounds far-fetched. What exactly is your argument and how do you support such an assertion with "absolute certainty"?

I don't like discrimination complaints in intellectual fields nor in athletic ones. Although, I've rarely ever heard an athletic discrimination argument articulated.

jack strocchi said...

THe US Supreme Court long ago lost its supposed professional role as defender of the US constitution. It is now clearly a political body to give judicial legitimacy to the hegemonial political faction.

So once the Supreme Court rules on an issue its supposed to be over.

I guess thats what liberals call "getting closure".

eh said...

It seems clear she was chosen primarily to satisfy ethnic tokenism, about which there seems to be more or less a consensus (i.e. the need for it). In this sense, Obama went for a 'twofer' -- she's non-white and female. It remains to be seen if her persona will cause (enough) problems during the confirmation hearings. In general, people who oppose affirmative action, especially those who actively oppose it, like Ward Connerly, are often portrayed as mean-spirited. And here the target will be a woman, which will probably generate more sympathy.

I don't plan to pay much attention; I already find the whole business tiresome.

G said...

Steve,

I understand your whole truth-at-any-cost shtick. And generally, I agree with it.

But, our Dear Leader just nominated his very own Harriet Miers. Fortunately, for the rest of us, no one in the ruling party seems to get it.

BHO is going to put a flaming liberal on the bench one way or another, we should be glad to have an inarticulate one. Letting her slide through is the best we can hope for.

John Craig said...

I'm dying to know what Sotomayor's SATs were. I think everyone up for major office should be compelled to revel their numbers.

Of course, personally, I'd like to see everyone have their IQ tattooed on their foreheads.

Anonymous said...

That stopwatch's "cultural biases" that were "built into (its) testing" revealed that I wasn't quite fast enough to play football on the next level. Dammit..............I just know I was just as fast as some of those other guys. This is why I think its “critical that we promote diversity” by appointing more whites and asians who athletic minorities as college football and basketball players.





Evil, wicked, unspeakable comment HERE:
If I were king of America, I would force every 16-year-old student in every school (even the homeschooled) to take a Mensa IQ test. It would be composed of no word-recognition tasks, just recognizing series, fitting certain shapes into other shapes, puzzle-solving, and would be devoid of any problems that could be construed as 'cultural'. It would break many hearts, and probably cause a good 20% of the student body to cry privately. Their scores would be posted for all to see. Aggregate scores from other area schools (both public and private) would be posted for public inspection also. Everybody would be forced to look at the truth. M

Anonymous said...

The test score thing is surprising given the summa at Princeton and being the Pyne Prize winner. Affirmative action types don't generally get those things. I guess being a grind is the explanation.

Danindc said...

Blake Ezor, Chicago Bears starting RB = Sonya Sotomayor SCOTUS

Is that what you want Jody?

Guts Strongman said...

"At least Obama got into Columbia and Harvard on his own merit, and not by pulling the race card."

Yes, that is why he released his LSAT and SAT scores. In fact, he even offered to give up his slot at Harvard Law to a disabled, financially disadvantaged Jewish kid who scored an 800 on his LSAT. (It was on a different scale when he went).

In other news, I recently visited the gumdrop forest to frolic with rainbow sprites and partake of their magical white gummy bear smoothie.

Mark said...

"Also, I'd estimate about 80% of standardized tests with a reading comprehension section contain a flattering article about black history."

I took the LSAT this year. There were two. :-)

Shawn said...

I think there should be a mandatory retirement age of 75 for the supreme court.

Anonymous said...

"Why is she drawing attention to this embarrassing fact? If I were her I'd feel ashamed. That stuff about "cultural bias" is nonsense. How, for example, can algebra and trigonometry be culturally biased? "

You can't shame the shameless

Anomalous Female said...

Well, kudos to her anyway for having the conscientiousness and strength of character to succeed in the Ivy League despite sub-par test scores. How many high-testing screw-ups have you known (*raises hand shamefacedly*)?

ben tillman said...

Her grammar is atrocious:

...it would have been highly questionable if I would have been accepted.

Had been.

With my academic achievement in high school, I was accepted rather readily at Princeton and equally as fast at Yale, but my test scores were not comparable to that of my classmates

Those.

I think it brings to the system more of a sense of fairness when these litigants see people like myself on the bench

Me.

ben tillman said...

What would Roman Hruska say?

"There are a lot of mediocre judges and people and lawyers. They are entitled to a little representation, aren't they, and a little chance?"

Lucius Vorenus said...

1) Who?

2) ???

3) Profit!


??? = Whom?

You can forward my Clay Millenium check to the underground lair.

MQ said...

Of course there's cultural bias in the SAT. Have you ever taken it? It's a ridiculous test.

If someone is admitted to an institution with lower SAT scores, then ends up graduating second in their class with stellar grades then excelling in her career, I would say that's pretty damn good evidence that the admissions committee made a fine decision. And that the SAT was undermeasuring her potential.

Anonymous said...

"At least Obama got into Columbia and Harvard on his own merit, and not by pulling the race card."

ROFLMAO!!!

Anonymous said...

How does law school qualify quasi-literate people like Sotomayor to hold forth on the intricate mechanisms of aptitude testing? They all seem to be experts on pyschometrics and intelligence, even though I'm unaware of a single law school offering coursework therein. Maybe it's just something that Wise Mestizos pick up by virtue of some special, impossible-to-quantify Magic Power, just as abundant melanin once enabled Black Pharoahs to fly around their pyramids without mechanical help.

Lucius Vorenus said...

Melykin At least Obama got into Columbia and Harvard on his own merit, and not by pulling the race card.

You wouldn't make an assertion like that if you had read the non-Ayers pieces in the Obama corpus.

E.g.:

Pop & Underground
independent.co.uk

Why Organize? Problems and Promise in the Inner City
edwoj.com

TORT LAW - PRENATAL INJURIES - SUPREME COURT OF ILLINOIS
REFUSES To RECOGNIZE CAUSE OF ACTION BROUGHT BY FETUS
AGAINST ITS MOTHER FOR UNINTENTIONAL INFLICTION OF PRENATAL
INJURIES. - Stailman v. Youngquist, 125 Ill. 2d 267, 531 N.E.2d
355 (1988).

HARVARD LAW REVIEW, Vol. 103:8o6, 1989-1990
heinonline.org

Review President Explains Affirmative Action Policy
media.www.hlrecord.org

Chicago Law School Exams, 1996 - 2003
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/07/30/us/politics/30law.html


There's a brief summary of these pieces in this old Free Republic article.

And I'd urge you to read everything that Jack Cashill has written about this subject.

Anonymous said...

"Also, I'd estimate about 80% of standardized tests with a reading comprehension section contain a flattering article about black history."

When I was a test prep instructor, I always taught my students that the correct answer would NEVER say anything negative about women or minorities. Any such answer choice could be safely crossed out without even reading the question.

Michael said...

FWIW, I know a couple of people who have known Sotomayor, and their judgment of her is basically "smart but not brilliant, hard-working, a grind." So I think Steve's evaluation of her is probably solid.

Now, I'm no fan of Sotomayor or of the Ivy League. But here's something I sometimes don't get in these conversation:

Why shouldn't places like Princeton and Yale Law admit who they damn well please? And according to whatever criteria they choose to employ?

They're private institutions, after all. It's their own damn business. (Not that we shouldn't also feel free to hassle them and ridicule them, of course.)

If they get too crazily absurd in whom they choose to accept and promote, they'll eventually degrade the value of their name and their degrees. Which is as it should be.

So it doesn't bug me a bit that a place like Princeton should take in kids with not-stellar test scores. First onthe "it's Princeton's damn business" principle. But also: Princeton isn't MIT or CalTech. Most kids there are going to be lib-arts majors, not math majors. Test scores may reveal 90% of what you need to know about a math or engineering candidate. But about an English major? A poli-sci major?

(You math-y/engineering types sometimes seem not to get that about the lib-arts world. There's definitely a certain brightness line that elite lib-arts people need to pass. But beyond that? Success in the lib-arts universe has 'way more to do with connections, drive, work ethic, sucking-up abilities and such than it does with raw mental horsepower.)

Anyway, if Princeton thinks it's important or worth-it to admit some Latinas with subpar SAT scores, so what? They admit all kinds of people for all kinds of different reason: athletes, legacy kids, kids with arts talents ...

Isn't it up to Princeton to create the student body it sees fit to create?

Anonymous said...

At least Obama got into Columbia and Harvard on his own merit, and not by pulling the race card.

Melykin, are you kidding? Barry was an affirmative action admit at both Columbia and Harvard. Barry was a mediocre student at Columbia (easy major, no honors), yet he had the balls to only apply to the top 3 schools: Har, Yal, Stan. If he had off the charts LSATs, we'd know about it.

I think Barry is about as intelligent as his wife abd Sotomayor.

Not very.

Klaus said...

"Obviously, Sotomayor was no more able to vote objectively on Ricci than Michelle Obama would have been."

Could we add to that, Steve Sailer and his commentariat? How about, human race?

Half Sigma said...

Sandra Day O'Connor graduated third in her class at Standford University Law School. She chose to be a unifier. It's common for women to have more agreeableness than men. It's hard to imagine a woman writing the brilliant-but-grumpy-and-sarcastic dissents of Justice Scalia

greenrivervalleyman said...

She of course was referring to this:


Arnold: My question was even trickier, Mr. Drummond.
Mr. Drummond: Oh, like what?
Arnold: Like they asked me how many people could sleep in a house with 3 bedrooms and double bed in each room.
Mr. Drummond: Oh, and what was your answer?
Arnold: 18.
Mr. Drummond: 18!
Arnold: Yeah! We know people who get 3 in a bed, 2 on the floor, 6 in the coach, and 1 in the bathroom!
(Audience Applause)


Everything I needed to know about race relations I learned through Norman Lear sitcoms.

greenrivervalleyman said...

And let's not forget the horrendously biased questions on the LSAT:


Willis: They wanted to know what does the blindfolded lady with the scales represent.
Mr. Drummond: Willis, that is a symbol of our American legal system.
Willis: My answer was wrong.
Mr. Drummond: Well, what did you say?
Mr. Drummond: I said the scales meant she was in the market, and the blindfold meant she didn't want to see the butcher riff her off.

(Audience laughter)

Marc B said...

There are many reasons to to disapprove of the Sotomayor nomination, but the idea that she is not an intelligent woman is absurd. She more than proved her cognitive ability by excelling in Ivy league educational settings while they still had a curriculum based on the structure of a rigorous classical education.

Sotomayor's unfitness is based her outspoken identity politics, using her position as judge for creating legislation, and the willingness to circumvent the sovereignty of the US by using international law as a reference for her rulings in US courts.

airtommy said...

Sotomayor's ego, personal and ethnic, is tied up in her remaining convinced, against the overwhelming weight of evidence, that there must be "cultural biases built into testing."

But Judge Sotomayor insisted that her test scores were sub-par — “though not so far off the mark that I wasn’t able to succeed at those institutions.”

From the last remark, it appears that Sotomayor is aware that the test scores are essentially accurate and unbiased. She recognizes that if her scores were very low, they would accurately predict her to be too stupid to succeed at the school. She knows that schools reject many applicants who can succeed at the school, simply due to classroom limits. She just feels we should force schools to let in a few minority applicants who are qualified but not distinguished. Why does she feel that way? Because she wants to help her race.

Anonymous said...

Judge Sonia Sotomayor once described herself as “a product of affirmative action” who was admitted to two Ivy League schools despite scoring lower on standardized tests than many classmates, which she attributed to “cultural biases” that are “built into testing.”




Can't she just say "Thank you"?

Anonymous said...

Melykin said...
“If we had gone through the traditional numbers route of those institutions, it would have been highly questionable if I would have been accepted,”

Why is she drawing attention to this embarrassing fact?

=======================

Bec she is of lesser intelligence, obviously! Anyone with 1/2 a brain would just shut up and snicker to theselves.

kurt9 said...

The GOP is stupid to oppose her nomination. Sotomayor has type 1 diabetes. Type 1 diabetics have significantly shorter lifespans than non-diabetics or people with type 2 diabetes. It is likely her term as a justice will not be much longer than 10 years. More likely than not, we will have a conservative president in office 10 years from now to replace her. With Obama, we will have liberal justices. There is no way around this. So, it is far better for the GOP to back a liberal with a significantly lower life expectancy so that she can be replaced sooner.

Anonymous said...

which she attributed to “cultural biases” that are “built into testing.”
----------------

What the hell is on this Law School Admissions Test any way??

I thought it was just reading comp and logic.....

What would a wise, but poor Peutro Rican woman want on such a test?

Anonymous said...

Get rid of cultural bias in employment testing and just go with Raven's Matrices.

Oops! On second thought...

Anonymous said...

"Isn't it up to Princeton to create the student body it sees fit to create?"

Fine by me...If things are a 2 way street. Which it ain't. They wanna get in my business, I'm gonna get in theirs...

Lucius Vorenus said...

Michael: Why shouldn't places like Princeton and Yale Law admit who they damn well please?... So it doesn't bug me a bit that a place like Princeton should take in kids with not-stellar test scores... Anyway, if Princeton thinks it's important or worth-it to admit some Latinas with subpar SAT scores, so what? Isn't it up to Princeton to create the student body it sees fit to create?

You kinda left out the part about how Sotomayor, as a sophomore [!!!] at Princeton, filed charges with the old H.E.W., against Princeton, and how Princeton was forced to cave to her demands and [among other things] award her the Pyne Prize [which is especially ironic now that it has become abundantly obvious that she is, at best, semi-literate].

In other words: Sotomayor is known to have been a professional race hustler since she was a teenager.

[The shame in all this is that Princeton didn't hold firm and simply expel her from school for filing the charges in the first place.]

Michael: But also: Princeton isn't MIT or CalTech. Most kids there are going to be lib-arts majors, not math majors.

A little off-topic, but traditionally it was the other way around: MIT & Caltech [& Harvard & all the rest of them] aspired to be Princeton.

Of course, after Shirley Tilghman finishes the work that Harold Shapiro started, there won't be any of that tradition left at Princeton.

Juan said...

Isn't Sotomayor's history an argument in favor of affirmative action? Based on her summa performance at Princeton, she was clearly able to do the work, after she got the initial AA boost.

J said...

“I think it brings to the system more of a sense of fairness when these litigants see people like myself on the bench.”

When something like a third of the population is of Latin American origin, having Sotomayor on the bench certainly brings to he system more of a sense of fairness. I think her argument is very strong. She is a very valuable addition to the Supreme Court. She makes America stronger. Viva Sotomayor !

Anonymous said...

"Also, I'd estimate about 80% of standardized tests with a reading comprehension section contain a flattering article about black history."

I couldn't help but notice this phenomenon while studying for the LSAT. I took dozens of practice tests, and every single reading comprehension section contained a passage on an African/African-American topic or a Mexican/Mexican-American/Native American topic.

On the LSAT I took on June 8, there were two reading comprehension sections. One real, one experimental, don't know which is which. One contained the typical passage about some obscure Black author, but the other was more interesting. It was a passage about a woman who developed a method for reducing the effects of "space sickness". The passage just happened to mention that she was African-American. I don't think there was another "people of color" passage in that section.

Anonymous said...

I should add that the obvious cultural bias in the "people of color" passages never really hindered my ability to answer the questions correctly.

Anonymous said...

"The test score thing is surprising given the summa at Princeton and being the Pyne Prize winner. Affirmative action types don't generally get those things. I guess being a grind is the explanation."

While at Princeton, she didn't major in something mathematical or technical (mathematics, hard sciences, engineering, economics, etc.), but history and what she took in history was basically an early version of a ethnic studies program. In such courses, minorities can spout politically correct drivel and be well rewarded with As. GPA and class standing are only relevant when you take into consideration what someone was actually taking in college or grad school. I'd be willing to wager a considerable sum that at most schools C students in engineering are brighter on average (higher in g) than A students in the ethnic or women's studies programs.

Zylonet said...

Since the Supreme Court has just ruled (I am sure this is a gross simplification) that a judge with the potential for bias should recuse himself, in what position does that place Sotomayor with regards to cases that hinge on race? After all, she has made declarative statements on the issue and has announced her own biases.

Anonymous said...

"Why shouldn't places like Princeton and Yale Law admit who they damn well please? And according to whatever criteria they choose to employ?"

Because it's bad for white people. If we are going to save ourselves, we have to make that the ultimate arbiter of all morality. If it's bad for our people, you can't do it. No exceptions. That's the ethical framework that every other group of people on earth explicitly operates under.

Melykin said...

About Obama's admission to Columbia and Harvard--I read somewhere that he got in without affirmative action. But perhaps this is not so.

In any case, I will eat my hat if Obama doesn't have an IQ at least 20 points higher than G.W.Bush (just from listening to them answer questions)

I think it is important for a leader to have a hight IQ, but some folks here seem to get a bit too carried away IQs. IQ isn't the be all and end all. The Unibomber, for example, probably has an exceptionally high IQ.

Anonymous said...

Bec she is of lesser intelligence, obviously! Anyone with 1/2 a brain would just shut up and snicker to theselves.

Because she wants to have her cake and eat it too, like the vast majority of the left.

She wants a hand up from whitey, and she wants to say he was the only reason she needed it in the first place.

I.e., she wants power without responsibility, more or less what children want, and what the left wants (think "pro-choice" and "reproductive rights"; all the power, with as little responsibility as possible)

~ Svigor

Anonymous said...

I have to grudgingly agree with G and many other conservative posters, Quota-whore might just be the least bitter pill in a cabinet full of bad medicine.

Kurt9's life expectancy observation is sweetener, obviously.

~ Svigor

John Anello said...

As a conservative law student, I have learned to recognize liberal “buzz words” that make me cringe as I read the opinions of our “elite legal thinkers”. These words include social justice, public good, preconstitutional rights, and as Ms. Sotomayor has articulated so eloquently, CULUTRAL BIASES. I find these terms to be useless fluff at best and legal time bombs at worst. They are seemingly innocuous terms that liberals use to conceal their redistribution/realignment agenda. It is clear that Sotomayor is a die hard liberal through and through, though we can take comfort in the fact that her confirmation, an almost certainty at this point, will not upset the ideological balance of the Court.

On a personal note, I am currently in the UK where it has become apparent to me that the year is not 2009, it is 1984. I am surprised I am even allowed access to your site from here, Steve.

Anonymous said...

Melykin said:
"In any case, I will eat my hat if Obama doesn't have an IQ at least 20 points higher than G.W.Bush (just from listening to them answer questions)"

What sort of condiment would you like on it? Ketchup? Mustard? Seriously, Steve analyzed W's SAT and Officer Intelligence Test scores. He appears to have an IQ around 125. Are you willing to bet that Barry logs in at at least 145? Of course we don't know because the genius-in-chief has his scores under lock and key.

Also, is having a melliflous voice and being able to read well off a teleprompter a sign of genius? Is being able to give a smooth, scripted response to scripted questions a sign of genius?

Michael said...

Re my question, "Why shouldn't Princeton admit whoever it pleases?"

Anonymous writes "Fine by me...If things are a 2 way street. Which it ain't. They wanna get in my business, I'm gonna get in theirs..."

And how exactly is Princeton getting in your business?

Lucius writes "In other words: Sotomayor is known to have been a professional race hustler since she was a teenager."

Interesting, but it has nothing to do with whether Princeton should admit whoever it pleases.

Anonymous writes "Because it's bad for white people. If we are going to save ourselves, we have to make that the ultimate arbiter of all morality. If it's bad for our people, you can't do it. No exceptions. That's the ethical framework that every other group of people on earth explicitly operates under."

And how's it bad for white people? BTW, many of the people running places like Princeton -- like many of the people who created affirmative action -- are white ...

Anonymous said...

"And how exactly is Princeton getting in your business?"

As if this needs any kind of explanation...



Or this.

"That's the ethical framework that every other group of people on earth explicitly operates under.

And how's it bad for white people? BTW, many of the people running places like Princeton -- like many of the people who created affirmative action -- are white ...
"

Just keep reading the NYT. I recommend a guy by the name of Nick Kristof...

Anonymous said...

"At least Obama got into Columbia and Harvard on his own merit, and not by pulling the race card."

And you know that how?

ricpic said...

No respectable white American dares question the phrase "cultural biases." Slam dunk.

Anonymous said...

What is this obsession these quota queens have with "test scores"? First Michelle Obama, now the Wise Latina. Has anyone who isn't a preferential-treatment minority given a single thought to their standardized test scores since their junior year of high school?

David said...

Melykin said

"At least Obama got into Columbia and Harvard on his own merit, and not by pulling the race card."

Well, that's certainly the assumption all nice people are supposed to make.

onestdv said:

"I don't like discrimination complaints in intellectual fields nor in athletic ones. Although, I've rarely ever heard an athletic discrimination argument articulated."

Just go to the website of Caste Football.

Whitey is expected to suck it up when discriminated against by law. NAMs holler over disparate impact - and like the squeaky wheel, get rewarded as a consequence. White stoicism is harmful to whites. Why are you for it? Misplaced ideas of nobility?

silly girl said...

"And how's it bad for white people? BTW, many of the people running places like Princeton -- like many of the people who created affirmative action -- are white ..."

Okay, let's spell it out slowly.

Princeton et.al. recruit and promote race hustlers who end up as judges because of their college cred.

Then from the judge's bench, they practically make laws which deprive whites generally the constitutionally guaranteed right to a level playing field.

Just because not every single white person suffers, doesn't mean whites don't suffer at all.

Similarly society doesn't benefit because a greater percentage of the workforce is mandated to be less qualified than a given employer would choose to hire.

Hopefully that is clear.

James Kabala said...

Anonymous: Has there ever been a Supreme Court justice who majored in math or science (except maybe economics)? If we throw out her grades, we have to throw out the grades of other justices and potential justices who majored in one of the liberal arts, which is probably the great majority of them.

Truth said...

Also, is having a melliflous voice and being able to read well off a teleprompter a sign of genius? Is being able to give a smooth, scripted response to scripted questions a sign of genius?"

Well, it has worked for Rush Limbaugh.

clem said...

The Unibomber, for example, probably has an exceptionally high IQ.

Unabomber, and yes he does (167 IQ at age ten). The phrase "evil genius" exists for a reason.

Anonymous said...

When something like a third of the population is of Latin American origin, having Sotomayor on the bench certainly brings to he system more of a sense of fairness. I think her argument is very strong. She is a very valuable addition to the Supreme Court. She makes America stronger. Viva Sotomayor !

I agree, Sotomayor is a good choice from an Israeli perspective.

Anonymous said...

Also, is having a melliflous voice and being able to read well off a teleprompter a sign of genius? Is being able to give a smooth, scripted response to scripted questions a sign of genius?

Right on. Thanks to the poster who linked to the execrable, poorly written Obama pieces.


media.www.hlrecord.org

Anonymous said...

James Kabala said:
"Anonymous: Has there ever been a Supreme Court justice who majored in math or science (except maybe economics)? If we throw out her grades, we have to throw out the grades of other justices and potential justices who majored in one of the liberal arts, which is probably the great majority of them."

James, you miss my point. I am an attorney with an undergrad background in economics/econometric modeling and am appalled by the general innumeracy in my profession. However, my point was not that all the Supremes should have majored in technical fields. It was that you must be bright (high g) to do well in a technical field. This is much less the case for liberal arts majors. If someone has high grades in a math/science field, they must be smart. If they are comming from a liberal arts major, high grades only mean that they have to be sort of smart. Therefore, if one finished near the top of their class in a technical field, it can be inferred that they are high in g. If they finished near the top in a liberal arts major, one can't make the same inference. Instead, you really need a direct measure of g, like an IQ test, SAT or LSAT. So James, yes, I don't place much stock in whatever grades the other Supremes may have learned if they were liberal arts majors. However, since we have it from the horse's mouth that Sotomayor didn't do that great on a highly g-loaded tests, she's not that bright.

Anonymous said...

I think we all know whether we worked hard in school for grades. We also know what we scored on college and grad school entrance tests like SAT, or LSAT etc. So we can look at Sotomayor, who we know is a hard worker, and then wonder how one so driven to put in the extra effort to study, etc. can be ashamed of her "low" scores. Since we don't know what those numbers are, we also don't know if they are only low compared to the highest of Ivy League students or low compared to the average Ivy League student.

Generally very hard work plus intelligence does not yield "low" scores.

She could erase the doubt by releasing all the records.

However, if it's like a whole SD below the average Ivy League student, that would be pretty scary.

green mamba said...

"Well, it has worked for Rush Limbaugh."

Truth, this makes no sense and is below par for you. First, no one calls Limbaugh a genius, except for maybe Limbaugh himself, although he is obviously plenty smart. Second, he doesn't read off a teleprompter, he extemporizes publicly for hours a few times a week.

Just because he is a target of choice for the left doesn't mean you can score points with nonsensical broadsides against him. At least, not in an intelligent forum.

Michael said...

Anonymous -- Glad you've attained the awesome state of "being above explaining yourself."

Silly girl -- As far as I can tell your reasoning goes this way: Sotomayor displeases me, therefore Princeton shouldn't have admitted her because her test scores weren't high enough. That's not very straight thinking. If you think the Ivies have too much influence in American public life, then protest that. (I'll certainly join your protest.) If you start arguing, though, that people should be admitted to Ivies only on the basis of test scores, then you're presumably talking about writing and passing laws, regulations and such, and imposing them on private institutions. Is that something you really want to do? You don't think we have enough such laws already? Do you really think your laws would stand a chance? And are you sure they won't boomerang on you? One likely consequence: You'll be preventing colleges from admitting legacy kids, musicians and artists, athletes, and other kids who may not test very well but who either show a lot of promise or might help make for a rewarding campus.

Easier solution: let private institutions do as they please. Mock 'em if and when they go overboard in their pursuit of diversity. Protest the influence certain schools have on our public life. But attack Sotomayor on her record and on her positions.

Reg Cæsar said...

Well, of course the standardized tests have "cultural bias". They're given in English, reward reasoning over feeling, and cheating is considered wrong and thus harshly punished. What more evidence of Anglo-Saxon cultural bias do you need? Why wouldn't a boriqueñafeel alien in such a milieu?

The real question this appointment inspires is, why the hell is Puerto Rico still an "associated state" anyway? The Spanish-American War ended 110 years ago, and I thought we won. Evidently not!

Blode0322 said...

If you start arguing, though, that people should be admitted to Ivies only on the basis of test scores, then you're presumably talking about writing and passing laws, regulations and such, and imposing them on private institutions.... One likely consequence: You'll be preventing colleges from admitting legacy kids, musicians and artists, athletes, and other kids who may not test very well but who either show a lot of promise or might help make for a rewarding campus.

I can't speak for Silly G., but I definitely think purely private institutions should be allowed to make legacy, affirmative action, and geographical (opposite coast) diversity admits. I just don't think that a university that accepts taxpayer money is purely private. If they are getting research grants and the like then they effectively an arm of the government. (Naturally they could theoretically be getting only very small grants, and that shouldn't count, but I don't know if anyone bothers writing a proposal for a grant that isn't considered big bucks.)

In this case, yes, I think the nonmerit admitting practices should be banned. There is no ethical way to humor with taxpayer money an organization committed to showering those funds on students just because they are Brahmin, NAM, or out-of-staters. I don't have problem with certain non-test criteria, like auditions and portfolios, or high-school grades if standardized tests are used as control (to fight grade inflation).

In any case, of course that legal proposal will never go anywhere, not because "we already have enough laws", but because of entrenched hatred of merit among the masses, and an alliance between them and the establishment.

Michael said...

Blode0322 -- Really? You really think Princeton should be legally prevented from using anything but grades and SAT scores as bases for admission? You're serious?

Truth said...

"First, no one calls Limbaugh a genius..."

No one, except the 20 million people who listen to him everyday.

". Second, he doesn't read off a teleprompter,..."

Well, not
any more.

"

Just because he is a target of choice for the left doesn't mean you can score points with nonsensical broadsides against him. At least, not in an intelligent forum."

Well what about scoring sensical broadsides against him because he is a dumb, fat, third rate, college dropout who got his first two or three radio jobs through affirmative action (his daddy), and has been fired many times?

Anonymous said...

I agree with the previous posters. Confirm the quotista. She's already in poor health.

Anonymous said...

"Sotomayor displeases me, therefore Princeton shouldn't have admitted her because her test scores weren't high enough. That's not very straight thinking. If you think the Ivies have too much influence in American public life, then protest that....But attack Sotomayor on her record and on her positions."

Uh huh, while she and her buddies attack whites just because they are white.

No thanks.

Your admonition to play fair with the cheaters is not selling here.

Sotomayor types and these schools are codependent and that relationship is destructive to the rest of us.

Roger Chaillet said...

LomaAlta: "Who cares if they (meaning blacks and Hispanics) have SATs of 956 as long as they are trying hard?"

These were the words spoken to me a few years ago by the admissions director of my alma mater, the University of Texas at Dallas.

You can confirm it by calling the university admissions office. The same guy is the current director.

On second thought, probably not.

You can "celebrate" differences, but not notice them.

PS: The university was founded and funded by the four founders of Texas Instruments, and given to the state of Texas as a graduate research institution.

And the guys from TI?

They made their fortunes from the sale of the integrated circuit.

And who was the genius behind the IC?

Jack Kilby, a pasty white guy from the Midwest who, along with his peers at Intel, co-invented the IC. And Kilby also failed the math entrance exam to MIT! http://www.amazon.com/Jack-St-Clair-Kilby-Words/dp/0971840288 But he also invented the pocket calculator and the thermal printer.

silly girl said...

"If you start arguing, though, that people should be admitted to Ivies only on the basis of test scores, then you're presumably talking about writing and passing laws, regulations and such, and imposing them on private institutions.... One likely consequence: You'll be preventing colleges from admitting legacy kids, musicians and artists, athletes, and other kids who may not test very well but who either show a lot of promise or might help make for a rewarding campus."

Well I guess I wasn't clear.

I don't care if private universities use AA, legacy, or the applicant's favorite color as admissions criteria.

I do care when people like Sotomayor get to use the fact they attended those schools as proxy proof of intelligence, talent and merit.

These elite schools mix the super bright with some others. No problem. But then everyone who goes wants to pretend that they were one of the bright stars when really they were just lucky.

Sotomayor gets to claim merit by association.

Then she uses her position to rule against the people she resents.

I agree we need to mock and ridicule these institutions when people start to claim that someone is brilliant because they went there. We need to point out that the brilliant are a subset.

I don't think policies that discriminate against qualified people are good for individuals or society.

I believe Sotomayor's position is just the opposite. She believes in special privileges for the less qualified.

James Kabala said...

Michael: Actually, current federal law prohibits a school that receives any federal money from discriminating against minorities, so if that law was applied impartially it would prohibit anti-white discrimination as well. Whether there should be such a law to begin with is, of course, a separate matter.

Blode0322 said...

Blode0322 -- Really? You really think Princeton should be legally prevented from using anything but grades and SAT scores as bases for admission? You're serious? - Michael

Well, not necessarily. I'd prefer it if government quit giving so many grants to (semi-)private institutions. Its smacks of corporatism. The Ivys should be able to do their research with a combination of their goodly endowments and their high tuitions. Similarly, other businesses which take taxpayer money should be meritocratic in nature. I don't want Boeing preferentially flying all its aerospace engineers out from Alabama on my dime, just to ensure that those wise Alabamans are around to teach everyone how aerodynamics work in Alabama.

If universities are going to take taxpayer money I think we need an assurance that they are not arbitrary with who they admit, but they clearly are, since Californians are only considered extra-desirable on the east coast and New Yorkers are only considered extra-desirable on the west. That basically just channels taxpayer money to the airlines. Legacy admits are pretty big step in the direction of titles of nobility, which are forbidden under the Constitution.

Anonymous said...

"Well what about scoring sensical broadsides against him because he is a dumb, fat, third rate, college dropout who got his first two or three radio jobs through affirmative action (his daddy), and has been fired many times?"

Bitter much?

Anonymous said...

Anonymous -- Glad you've attained the awesome state of "being above explaining yourself."


It is a great place to be. Proceed with your usual liberal tripe with your head deeply buried in the sand...

Roger Chaillet said...

Rush Limbaugh might have gotten his break via affirmative action (daddy's boy), but he's been successful since then based on his market appeal.

Besides, it's not like radio is a zero-sum game, unlike university admissions.

I don't think Rush was "mentored" for the first 4 years of his career in radio, nor held to a lesser standard for these years.

OneSTDV said...

I posted a criticism of the notion of "cultural bias" at my blog:

www.onestdv.blogspot.com

See post: "Cultural Bias of Standardized Tests"

Truth said...

"Bitter much?"

Nah, just literate.

"Rush Limbaugh might have gotten his break via affirmative action (daddy's boy), but he's been successful since then based on his market appeal."

What a Co-ink-ey-dink; that could describe our president.

"
Besides, it's not like radio is a zero-sum game, unlike university admissions."

There are an unlimited number of radio stations hiring an unlimited number of talk show hosts?

Anonymous said...

"Rush Limbaugh might have gotten his break via affirmative action (daddy's boy), but he's been successful since then based on his market appeal."

What a Co-ink-ey-dink; that could describe our president.


Nah, Obama's still successful based on AA.

There are an unlimited number of radio stations hiring an unlimited number of talk show hosts?

Truth's "parody of a parody" routine continues.

~ Svigor

Anonymous said...

Another difference is that Rush was a daddy's boy on his ACTUAL FATHER'S dime.

Apparently I get to serve as Obama's daddy.

~ Svigor

Truth said...

"Truth's "parody of a parody" routine continues."

Well, it beats the hell out of a "routine of the routine" parody, doesn't it Sport?

Anonymous said...

Well, if this is the new standard for comments making it through the filter, I just have to say that Truth is a little wussy-boy.

Truth said...

"Well, if this is the new standard for comments making it through the filter, I just have to say that Truth is a little wussy-boy."

And if THAT is the new standard for comments making it through the filter, I just have to say that your mom just left my house after a 14-hour romp, and she'd disagree with you!

Anonymous said...

You responded to that? Looks like you got a hook in your lip, Truthipants.

Paranoid Bitchy Incessant Whiner said...

And half of all my posts get censored?

Sheesh!

Anonymous said...

Well, it beats the hell out of a "routine of the routine" parody, doesn't it Sport?

Interesting. Very "vibrant." Trains on time? Boooooriiiing!

~ Svigor

Truth said...

"Interesting. Very "vibrant." Trains on time? Boooooriiiing!"

~ Svigor

I think you just walked on the rice paper without breaking it, grasshopper.

Pyne Prize details. said...

Sotomayor's Pyne Prize laudation says that she had "mostly A's in the last two years" at Princeton, which is a solid but not exceptional performance.
The prize is not entirely academic in nature, and her award was certainly based on her political activism and possibly her race, together with a solid but in no way exceptional academic record. She helped to organize, and in fact demand from the administration, some of the ethnic studies courses that contributed to her GPA.

The white male who shared the prize that year, David Germany, was a superstar. An economics major, he had the highest GPA at Princeton at the end of his first and third years, was a teaching assistant for an advanced econometrics class, got a PhD from MIT, and now runs a 200+ billion dollar hedge fund. All this is archived on the Daily Princetonian web site.

At Yale, Sotomayor did well but was no academic star, according to New York Times.

On the bench, she did OK, but was no judicial star.
Jonathan Turley's analysis of her decisions is entirely plausible.

Sotomayor's interviews consistently reveal an imperfect command of spoken English, as though it were a hastily learned second language.

Everything points to Sotomayor being bright and hardworking, but not brilliant, and well below what is normally considered threshold IQ for the Supreme Court, or some of the Federal courts for that matter.