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Re: Social Security Reform - Today's News.........
Old 01-31-2005, 03:57 PM   #181
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Re: Social Security Reform - Today's News.........

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I've really tried to avoid this debate, but this last posting makes me want to repeat Cutthroat's question . . . What are you suggesting? *

Several posters seem to be saying, "I'm not a racist but I believe that there are intelligence and/or fundamental moral difference between the races." *Or maybe you are just saying that you are open to the idea that there may be such a difference.
If you look carefully at what I said, you will see that an underclass is not racially distinct. Because of its urban location and political strength, in the USA people are often talking about African-Americans with this term. (See for example Daniel Patrick Moynihan, Thomas Sowell, and many others.) I am not. There is a white underclass, more often rural, that is also very resistant to change. Likewise the former East Germans, who are as white as people can get are resistant to change, no matter how much money gets thrown at them. I didn't mention this, but there are the Turks in Germany, and North African Arabs in France. These groups have nothing in common with North American underclasses, other than they are very resistant to being mainstreamed and they represent a burden of crime and social support.

What I am suggesting is that throwing money at this problem hasn't worked, and won't work.

You are correct that that is an assertion, not a statement of fact. This is true of 85% of what gets posted here, or in the newspaper, or anywhere else.

It won't be fact until the US ceases to exist and historians have a go at it, and even then surviving liberals can say we just didn't keep it up long enough.

Just like in everything else in life you assess probabilities and take your best estimate. I am not a political leader. Even if I had an idea what might work, which I don't, I couldn't bring it about. People sometimes speak against criticizing something unless you have a solution. This is ignorance, pure and simple. If people cannot criticize what is not working, how in the world could they ever begin to figure out better approaches? If a patient in the ICU is going downhill on some drug, the doctor doesn't just keep giving it to him. He tries something else

I am against uncontrolled immigration. The biggest reason is that the new unskilled immigrants legal and otherwise are taking jobs that might otherwise be available to the underclass that is already here. In my opinion, we owe more to the struggling people already here of whatever race (or as one poster suggested, there are no races) than to new imports. Incidentally, this is not an off the wall idea among people who are able to cut their own grass and take care of their own children. A recent book by Samuel Huntington, the Alfred Weatherhead University Professor of Political Science at Harvard makes this point and others about US national identity. The name of the book is Who Are We?

The only thing that bothers you about my post is that it is well reasoned and I believe it shows that we are in the soup.

The only thing that bothers me about your post is that it seems to signal an astonishing fear of even contemplating the possibility that we as a society may have made and are continuing to make some mistaken choices.

Mikey
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Re: Social Security Reform - Today's News.........
Old 01-31-2005, 05:06 PM   #182
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Re: Social Security Reform - Today's News.........

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I wonder how any of those arguments helps us to form a plan of action.
I'd just like to see the discussion framed in a different way, so that we explore different approaches, rather than continuing down the same old failed path.

I remember back in the 80's when it was first suggested that homosexuality possibly had a genetic component. That seemed to completely change the public mind-set, gays have become much more accepted, the subject has become much less taboo, and society has taken a step forward.

I'd like to see the same thing happen with discussions about race. I'd like to see us accept the differences, perhaps embrace them, and move on.

When this discussion is raised, it inevitably leads to some knee-jerk response about eugenics or genocide. That either comes from an extremely cynical view of our society, or from years of liberal conditioning and a refusal to think in different terms.
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Re: Social Security Reform - Today's News.........
Old 01-31-2005, 07:47 PM   #183
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Re: Social Security Reform - Today's News.........

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What I am suggesting is that throwing money at this problem hasn't worked, and won't work.
Well . . . okay. I didn't get that from your post. What problem is it that we have been throwing money at that hasn't worked? and how does it relate to race? or genetics?

Quote:
The only thing that bothers you about my post is that it is well reasoned and I believe it shows that we are in the soup.
I'm not bothered by your post, mikey. I'm still not sure what soup you think we're in. . . or how it relates to race.

Quote:
Before long the USA will look like South America. Some rich people in gated communities and high quality high rises. Some middle class law-abiders of all races in suburbs ever farther from the cities. Inner cities will be largely unpoliced, very dangerous for anyone of any race who must live there, and very dangerous for anyone who accidentally blunders in. The process of destruction will follow the middle class suburbs out, as can already be seen in many older suburbs where the cops can't really keep up with the gangs.

No one will ever change anybody's mind on these things, because one can always make objections to any argument. The perfect way to prevent trying anything new is cry racism, and say we haven't done enough yet. The word racist is to our time what the word heretic was to Galileo's.

But as Wabmester pointed out, we have done more than any other society, ever.

Sometime, people will say enough. Then watch the shite hit the fan!
I'm not sure what part of the above you think is well-reasoned, but I'm not bothered that you feel it is.

Quote:
The only thing that bothers me about your post is that it seems to signal an astonishing fear of even contemplating the possibility that we as a society may have made and are continuing to make some mistaken choices.
Wow. You've read so much more into my post than I wrote or intended. I'm still not even sure what mistake you think we've made. Slavery? I guess I agree that this was a pretty big mistake, but there's not much I can do about that and there's certainly no reason for me to get bothered about it now.

Peace, mikey.
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Re: Social Security Reform - Today's News.........
Old 01-31-2005, 08:01 PM   #184
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Re: Social Security Reform - Today's News.........

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I'd just like to see the discussion framed in a different way, so that we explore different approaches, rather than continuing down the same old failed path.
In what way, wab? I'm not trying to frame a discussion. I'm trying to understand what the discussion is about. What is your point?

Quote:
I remember back in the 80's when it was first suggested that homosexuality possibly had a genetic component. * That seemed to completely change the public mind-set, gays have become much more accepted, the subject has become much less taboo, and society has taken a step forward.

I'd like to see the same thing happen with discussions about race. * *I'd like to see us accept the differences, perhaps embrace them, and move on.
What differences are we not embracing, wab? I really don't get it. I'm not rejecting any theories, but I haven't heard one spelled out that I could test and discuss.

Quote:
When this discussion is raised, it inevitably leads to some knee-jerk response about eugenics or genocide. * That either comes from an extremely cynical view of our society, or from years of liberal conditioning and a refusal to think in different terms.
Wow. I missed that part of the discussion.

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Re: Social Security Reform - Today's News.........
Old 02-01-2005, 12:20 AM   #185
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Re: Social Security Reform - Today's News.........

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In what way, wab? *I'm not trying to frame a discussion. *I'm trying to understand what the discussion is about. *What is your point?
SG, you really only need to read a few messages back, but I'll recap for you.

The standard liberal argument, as expressed by CT, is that the white man historically oppressed the black man, and continues to hold the black man down, and that explains all of the statistics about crime, poverty, and social achievement, and the only way to address this is to end racist oppression and make amends for the sins of our forefathers.

My view is that this is no longer a white vs black problem, that there will always be an underclass, that there are genetic factors responsible for both underachievment in general, for the myriad differences among humans in general, and perhaps for the perceived intersection of race and underachievement in the US.

This is not to say there is a direct correlation with race and "achievement." However, the liberal approach, again as articulated by our friend CT, appears to be that the solution to all of our social ills must be predicated on the idea that we are all the same. It is taboo to acknowledge innate differences in culture and gene expression that could be part of the equation.

What I would like you to embrace is:

1) People are different. Skin is an organ. The brain is an organ. It's not only OK to acknowledge those differences, but we should actively pursue understanding the spectrum of those differences, and how those differences can influence behavior.

2) We have and will always have an underclass. We have failed to deal with the problems of the underclass. This is not exclusively a race issue, although I'll acknowledge that racial discrimination is still a factor. Reframe the problem as "how does a rich society deal with chronic crime, poverty, broken homes, poor education, and poor health," and see if the race issues don't take care of themselves.
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Re: Social Security Reform - Today's News.........
Old 02-01-2005, 09:18 AM   #186
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Re: Social Security Reform - Today's News.........

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The standard liberal argument, as expressed by CT, is that the white man historically oppressed the black man, and continues to hold the black man down, and that explains all of the statistics about crime, poverty, and social achievement, and the only way to address this is to end racist oppression and make amends for the sins of our forefathers.
Well . . . I don't know what the "standard liberal argument" is, but I neither read this into CT's posts nor implied it myself. Nor do I believe it. It is often easier to discredit other's arguments if you frame them yourself in an illogical or week manner. But this is only your argument, not mine.

Quote:
My view is that this is no longer a white vs black problem, that there will always be an underclass, that there are genetic factors responsible for both underachievment in general, for the myriad differences among humans in general, and perhaps for the perceived intersection of race and underachievement in the US.

This is not to say there is a direct correlation with race and "achievement." * However, the liberal approach, again as articulated by our friend CT, appears to be that the solution to all of our social ills must be predicated on the idea that we are all the same. * It is taboo to acknowledge innate differences in culture and gene expression that could be part of the equation.
Again, I do not see this argument in any CT posts and I certainly would not make that argument myself. Half the population is less intelligent, less successful, less . . . than the other half. At least part of the reason for this distinction is genetic. Clearly, we are not all the same or we would see monolithic behavior rather than a distribution. I don't know how much of our differences are genetic vs environmental and niether does anyone else. But whatever amount is genetic by race, it is clearly less significant than the similarities since the distributions of behavior share more overlap than distinction. If quantifying the amount of difference that is genetic is helpful to society in some way, I don't see it. But it will be very difficult to determine the environment/heredity cause and effect relationship anyway.

Quote:
What I would like you to embrace is:

1) People are different. * Skin is an organ. * The brain is an organ. * It's not only OK to acknowledge those differences, but we should actively pursue understanding the spectrum of those differences, and how those differences can influence behavior.

2) We have and will always have an underclass. * We have failed to deal with the problems of the underclass. * This is not exclusively a race issue, although I'll acknowledge that racial discrimination is still a factor. * Reframe the problem as "how does a rich society deal with chronic crime, poverty, broken homes, poor education, and poor health," and see if the race issues don't take care of themselves.
Well . . . I'm glad you provided me with your expectations for me.

I honestly don't understand what you think you have framed differently from mainstream political thought. You have mentioned race as if it is a critical factor that is left out as taboo by some diabolical "liberals". But I'm not sure who these mythical "liberals" are. And although I believe whole-heartedly that some of the differences in human potential and human behavior is genetic, I fail to see how that applies to a race issue in a way that can be made useful.

The underlying problem with a race-behavior analysis is that the similarities between the races (typified by the shared portion of the distribution) is far greater than the distinction (typified by the norm). Even if we believe that 100% of the distinction is genetic, we are left with nothing in the way of valuable, useful information. We still want to screen/discourage the behavior of a small minority of people of all races -- not the race itself.
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Re: Social Security Reform - Today's News.........
Old 02-01-2005, 10:59 AM   #187
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Re: Social Security Reform - Today's News.........

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You have mentioned race as if it is a critical factor that is left out as taboo by some diabolical "liberals".
If this subject is not taboo, why do I feel so uncomfortable bringing it up, and why did CT decide to opt-out of the conversation? * *The first thing I would like to see happen is for everybody to break this taboo.

As I said before, I believe a similar "emancipation" happened in the realm of gay rights and the discussion of gay issues. * Currently, I think discussions of race issues are hampered by the limited language we're "allowed" to use.

As for where it would lead, I have no idea. * *If we were free to explore genetic links to behavior, I can think of three outcomes off the top of my head:

1) If you believe that we're inheritently evil and we have failed to learn from past atrocities, it could lead to eugenics or worse.

2) If you believe in Huxleian dystopias, then it could mean the creation of a caste system and distribution of Soma-like drugs for everyone.

3) Or it could mean that we stop pretending that all we need to do is offer equal opportunity, and everybody will rise to the same level. * And instead we offer the basic necessities of life to all who need it, put an end to crime, poverty, and conflict, and we all live happily ever after
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Re: Social Security Reform - Today's News.........
Old 02-01-2005, 11:05 AM   #188
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Re: Social Security Reform - Today's News.........

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I remember back in the 80's when it was first suggested that homosexuality possibly had a genetic component. *
I'd like to see the same thing happen with discussions about race. * *I'd like to see us accept the differences, perhaps embrace them, and move on.
Hey, Wab, I hear that race has a genetic component too!

I recommend living where everyone is a minority. The "accept, embrace, & move on" is pretty much what's happening here. It's not without its glitches & bumps, but no race is accused of holding another down. Instead of "racism" we see words like "cultural differences", "nepotism", or "bribery".

But if we're going to see more words like "Huxleian", then I fear I'm done with this thread too...
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Re: Social Security Reform - Today's News.........
Old 02-01-2005, 11:07 AM   #189
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Re: Social Security Reform - Today's News.........

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But if we're going to see more words like "Huxleian", then I fear I'm done with this thread too...
Don't worry, Nords. I only get to use "Huxleian" about once every 20 years. At college bull sessions and on internet discussion boards :)
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Re: Social Security Reform - Today's News.........
Old 02-01-2005, 01:19 PM   #190
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Re: Social Security Reform - Today's News.........

I'll make one more go of this, then I'll join CT in retirement
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If this subject is not taboo, why do I feel so uncomfortable bringing it up, and why did CT decide to opt-out of the conversation? * *The first thing I would like to see happen is for everybody to break this taboo.
I don't know why you feel uncomfortable or why CT decided to opt out. I don't feel uncomfortable. My guess would be that CT got tired of being misinterpreted and accused of making "typical liberal" arguments -- so he probably decided to go fishing.

Quote:
As I said before, I believe a similar "emancipation" happened in the realm of gay rights and the discussion of gay issues. * Currently, I think discussions of race issues are hampered by the limited language we're "allowed" to use.
You did mention this before. I think this is not a very useful analogy. Sex is either with someone of the same gender or it is not. There is no distribution of a sex act. And people tend to prefer either sex acts with people of the same gender or not. There are some exceptions, but few. Finding a genetic source for this preference could be useful -- even if only to help people develop tolerance.

Intelligence or behavior is represented as a distribution and that distribution is mostly comon to all races. If we tie intelligence or behavior to genetics, it is similar to the gay analogy. But since we are talking about a continuum, the correlation is much more complex than for the simple bi-modal distribution of sexual preference.

Quote:
As for where it would lead, I have no idea. *
This is beginning to sound like a ***** post -- one of those where he spends several thousand words and dozens of posts explaining to us that he has a great new revelation about SWR but he can't explain it because it would take too long or he is not allowed to use up the boards.

As far as I can tell, the position that you are putting forth is that you believe that race and some kind of social behavior tendancy are related through genetics. I think you are also stating that you have no data to back up this belief, nor do you know how that belief (if true) could be useful. But somehow you feel like "liberals" are keeping you from talking about it.

Please don't let me stop you from talking further about it. The thread is all yours.
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Re: Social Security Reform - Today's News.........
Old 02-01-2005, 01:28 PM   #191
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Re: Social Security Reform - Today's News.........

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As far as I can tell, the position that you are putting forth is that you believe that race and some kind of social behavior tendancy are related through *genetics. *I think you are also stating that you have no data to back up this belief, nor do you know how that belief (if true) could be useful. *But somehow you feel like "liberals" are keeping you from talking about it.

Please don't let me stop you from talking further about it. *The thread is all yours. *
And I believe that your asinine summary and conversation killer is just a passive-aggressive way of calling me a racist. Which both bolsters my point, and convinces me that trying to discuss this rationally is futile.
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Re: Social Security Reform - Today's News.........
Old 02-01-2005, 04:26 PM   #192
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Re: Social Security Reform - Today's News.........

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Finding a genetic source for this preference could be useful -- even if only to help people develop tolerance. *
Just because I think it's funny.... gay flys... who would have thought!

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/2266135.stm


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