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Politics. The feel in your country.

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  • Balrog99Balrog99 Member Posts: 7,002

    for what it's worth, there is no affirmative action in Trump's white house and ...

    * More than 90 percent of his picks for federal courts were white. 70 percent were male.
    * Only one Cabinet member, Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson, is black.
    * Trump administration shows that with over 1,000 mid-level political jobs filled by mid-year the appointees look much like the top leadership: mostly white and male.
    * Office of Personnel Management numbers analyzed by Reuters show that 88 percent of such appointees were non-Hispanic white and 62 percent were men.


    http://www.newsweek.com/fact-check-diversity-white-house-trump-huckabee-sanders-omarosa-748673

    That's a big surprise? I don't imagine he'd have many blacks, women or Hispanics fawning all over him telling him how great he is...

    Proont
  • joluvjoluv Member Posts: 2,136
    Ha, I considered the inevitability of a @Mathsorcerer "Fair?! Life isn't fair!" post and decided to roll with that word anyway. Briefly, I think we should also do more to address the situations you mention, but issues of racial inequality are more urgent because they are larger-scale and are self-reinforcing.

    As far as doing something about it, we've been talking about affirmative action. Also, our tax system already does some amount of wealth redistribution and funding of social programs that aim to help with this problem. You could describe that as theft if you wanted to, I guess. But hey man, life's not fair.

    MathsorcererThacoBell
  • MathsorcererMathsorcerer Member Posts: 3,009
    joluv said:

    Ha, I considered the inevitability of a @Mathsorcerer "Fair?! Life isn't fair!" post and decided to roll with that word anyway.

    Am I really that predictable? (yes, probably so)

    I wouldn't call the modicum of redistribution we have "theft" but some people do. I lump those people in with "sovereign citizens", the people who think the Articles of Confederation (which predated the Constitution) still apply. You can't help people like that--they have fallen off the edge.

    joluvBalrog99Proont
  • booinyoureyesbooinyoureyes Member Posts: 6,162
    The "average" person of any race is as fictional a character as Minsc or Boo. Individuals are real, live, breathing people.

    I believe that basing the treatment of an individual on average outcomes for people who share their immutable characteristics robs them of a very basic dignity. It is in fact the very logic that your day-to-day run of the mill racists use as justification for their attitudes.

    Perhaps there are some occasions basing treatment of individuals on averages may result in minimal harm, and there might be some situations where an immutable characteristic is a good measurement (for example, I would agree that the disabled merit special treatment). However, whether it be racial profiling or affirmative action, it is often very harmful and strains relations between groups of people.

    Balrog99FinneousPJThacoBell
  • joluvjoluv Member Posts: 2,136
    Dismissing overwhelming statistical evidence of inequality on the basis that numbers are dehumanizing is an absurd cop-out. Really disappointing.

    semiticgoddesssmeagolheart
  • jjstraka34jjstraka34 Member Posts: 9,723
    edited February 2018
    So what would have been the plan after the Civil Rights Act passed without federal laws which forced employers to start hiring minorities?? Or forced ANY of it to actually be implemented. Because we see how well Reconstruction worked out after it was abandoned, at which time the South, unable to actually enslave blacks anymore, simply transitioned to a system that was basically just like apartheid South Africa (commonly known as Jim Crow). Beyond that, we just sit here and act like it's all ancient history, when this all took place when your grandparents were in their 30s or 40s.

    As I've mentioned before, African-Americans (even ones who fought in WW2) were not able to take advantage of the government programs that helped create the prosperous white middle class of the 1950s. They weren't originally included in the Social Security program (because it excluded farm-workers and maids, which represented 2/3 of the black workers in the South at the time). It's not hard to look up to footage of black students having to be ushered into the University of Alabama by the National Guard.

    On a micro-level, can I understand why an individual white person would be pissed if they thought they missed out on a job that went to a minority?? I guess so. But why is the assumption in this hypothetical ALWAYS that the minority was less qualified?? And on a macro-level (which is the only way a problem like this could actually be addressed)?? Forget about it. There is absolutely no comparison in the unfairness of the first 200 years of this country and the practice of Affirmative Action. If life is indeed unfair, then the last 50 years since the Civil Rights Act are the pendulum swinging back maybe 5% in the other direction. The weight of the unfairness isn't even remotely comparable. And yes, I am going to discuss large demographic groups, because that's what discussion of political science entails.

    And, quite frankly, liberals have already reaped the whirlwind of these policies. They were the Presidencies of Nixon, Reagan, and the current Administration. It's not like the people against these policies haven't had champions sitting in the Oval Office at regular intervals. The idea that we are GOING TO feel a backlash to them at some time in the future is absurd. The backlash started almost instantly. Pat Buchanan and Lee Atwater took their guys to Electoral victory on the backs of a white backlash long, long before Donald Trump came down the escalator. Trump just dispensed with the thinly-veiled dog whistles.

  • Balrog99Balrog99 Member Posts: 7,002



    But why is the assumption in this hypothetical ALWAYS that the minority was less qualified??

    It is assumed precisely because of affirmative action and quotas. The stigma that comes along with them can't be avoided. It's easy for people to look at black workers and assume they only got their position because of those policies. I've seen it a lot where I work. Thankfully it's less often now than it was 20 years ago but the attitudes are still there under the surface. Those workers are scrutinized more and any failings are magnified too. There's no way to legislate that away...

    ThacoBell
  • jjstraka34jjstraka34 Member Posts: 9,723
    Balrog99 said:



    But why is the assumption in this hypothetical ALWAYS that the minority was less qualified??

    It is assumed precisely because of affirmative action and quotas. The stigma that comes along with them can't be avoided. It's easy for people to look at black workers and assume they only got their position because of those policies. I've seen it a lot where I work. Thankfully it's less often now than it was 20 years ago but the attitudes are still there under the surface. Those workers are scrutinized more and any failings are magnified too. There's no way to legislate that away...
    There is also no way to legislate away 200 years of a country existing on a foundation of racial superiority, and what that does to the perceptions and psyche of the society at large. If it took two centuries to get that way, it sure as hell isn't going to fix itself in 1/4 of that time.

  • Balrog99Balrog99 Member Posts: 7,002

    Balrog99 said:



    But why is the assumption in this hypothetical ALWAYS that the minority was less qualified??

    It is assumed precisely because of affirmative action and quotas. The stigma that comes along with them can't be avoided. It's easy for people to look at black workers and assume they only got their position because of those policies. I've seen it a lot where I work. Thankfully it's less often now than it was 20 years ago but the attitudes are still there under the surface. Those workers are scrutinized more and any failings are magnified too. There's no way to legislate that away...
    There is also no way to legislate away 200 years of a country existing on a foundation of racial superiority, and what that does to the perceptions and psyche of the society at large. If it took two centuries to get that way, it sure as hell isn't going to fix itself in 1/4 of that time.
    Agreed, but things are better than they were 50 years ago. It will change, but how long it takes is anybody's guess. I've seen attitudes changing quite a bit in my lifetime. Don't think for a minute that folks like you and @smeagolheart haven't accomplished anything over the years. Pushing for immediate change and damn the torpedoes is a recipe for disaster however.

    jjstraka34ThacoBell
  • jjstraka34jjstraka34 Member Posts: 9,723
    edited February 2018
    Balrog99 said:

    Balrog99 said:



    But why is the assumption in this hypothetical ALWAYS that the minority was less qualified??

    It is assumed precisely because of affirmative action and quotas. The stigma that comes along with them can't be avoided. It's easy for people to look at black workers and assume they only got their position because of those policies. I've seen it a lot where I work. Thankfully it's less often now than it was 20 years ago but the attitudes are still there under the surface. Those workers are scrutinized more and any failings are magnified too. There's no way to legislate that away...
    There is also no way to legislate away 200 years of a country existing on a foundation of racial superiority, and what that does to the perceptions and psyche of the society at large. If it took two centuries to get that way, it sure as hell isn't going to fix itself in 1/4 of that time.
    Agreed, but things are better than they were 50 years ago. It will change, but how long it takes is anybody's guess. I've seen attitudes changing quite a bit in my lifetime. Don't think for a minute that folks like you and @smeagolheart haven't accomplished anything over the years. Pushing for immediate change and damn the torpedoes is a recipe for disaster however.
    I've done nothing, but a group of high school students in Florida have somehow forced all of corporate America to abandon one of the most powerful lobbying groups in the country over the course of 3 days. I'm frankly in awe of them. If nothing else, they have turned the NRA into a permanent pariah.

  • Balrog99Balrog99 Member Posts: 7,002
    edited February 2018
    It's not the students. They don't have that power and frankly seem to be too political (at least the outspoken ones). I think all Americans are just getting sick of this bullshit! I told you I've changed my opinion on gun control and I may be more representative of my fellow conservatives than I thought. Let's just see if anything real comes of this before declaring victory though...

    Edit: I think it's also an eye-opener that the Sheriff deputies didn't respond the way they were supposed to. That kind of completely blows the armed teacher BS out if the water. If trained law enforcement officers don't know what to do, how the Hell is a teacher going to do any better?

    smeagolheart
  • FinneousPJFinneousPJ Member Posts: 6,456
    edited February 2018
    joluv said:

    Dismissing overwhelming statistical evidence of inequality on the basis that numbers are dehumanizing is an absurd cop-out. Really disappointing.

    That's the whole point. You have failed to present this overwhelming evidence - or any evidence, really. You have fallen victim to same error in thinking I pointed out earlier with pro gun people. You get the idea that there is something unfair about the way wealth is distributed by race, so you try and find a graph that supports this. Of course you do and are happy the data supports your conclusion. The problem is this is exactly the opposite to how science works.

  • joluvjoluv Member Posts: 2,136
    Are you kidding me? Do you think one has to cherry-pick data from obscure sources to find evidence of racial wealth disparity in the U.S.? I Googled "U.S. wealth by race" and posted the graph from the top link, which was from a popular conservative-leaning publication. This is not a controversial or nuanced idea.

    If you want to go looking for statistical evidence that black people in the U.S. have just as much wealth as white people, then be my guest. I'm not going to commission an independent statistical study of this issue, so I don't know what else I can do for you, science-wise.

  • FinneousPJFinneousPJ Member Posts: 6,456
    joluv said:

    Are you kidding me? Do you think one has to cherry-pick data from obscure sources to find evidence of racial wealth disparity in the U.S.? I Googled "U.S. wealth by race" and posted the graph from the top link, which was from a popular conservative-leaning publication. This is not a controversial or nuanced idea.

    If you want to go looking for statistical evidence that black people in the U.S. have just as much wealth as white people, then be my guest. I'm not going to commission an independent statistical study of this issue, so I don't know what else I can do for you, science-wise.

    I am not kidding you. I guess you don't have a science education if you are that offended by my point. I am simply saying what you have presented as evidence is not convincing. I am not saying what you are saying is necessarily untrue.

  • joluvjoluv Member Posts: 2,136
    Bad guess. Again, I don't know what kind of evidence you're expecting in a forum post beyond clearly relevant data taken from a reputable source. That's as close as I'm going to get to the scientific method here.

  • FinneousPJFinneousPJ Member Posts: 6,456
    joluv said:

    Bad guess. Again, I don't know what kind of evidence you're expecting in a forum post beyond clearly relevant data taken from a reputable source. That's as close as I'm going to get to the scientific method here.

    That's not even approaching the scientific method. What we have here is confirmation bias. You have a conclusion and then you find data to support it. You are supposed to look at the data to find the most reasonable conclusion.

  • Grond0Grond0 Member Posts: 6,978
    edited February 2018
    The scientific method requires forming a hypothesis before testing that against available data (though that's an iterative process). While I agree there's a possibility of confirmation bias, i.e. that you cherry-pick data that supports your views and ignore data that doesn't, I don't think it's unreasonable of @joluv to do limited testing of such a well-known hypothesis as that blacks have less wealth than whites in the US. It also wouldn't of course be unreasonable for @FinneousPJ to look in more detail at the statistics to see if that hypothesis needs refining.

    FinneousPJ
  • FinneousPJFinneousPJ Member Posts: 6,456
    @Grond0 The whole formulation "blacks have less wealth than blacks" is flawed tbh, because it already carries the assumption that race is significant factor in wealth. You should be doing a multivariate analysis across let's say 20 factors to see what are the statistically significant factors. It's possible race isn't one.

  • FinneousPJFinneousPJ Member Posts: 6,456
    edited February 2018
    @Ammar I am not suggesting he is cherry picking data, I'm suggesting he is accepting the hypothesis uncritically by using a simplistic model that doesn't properly test his hypothesis.

    And also, I am not claiming affirmative action is harmful.

    And like I said above, the whole hypothesis of "black have less wealth than whites" is flawed because it already assumes race is a predictor which is the thing we are supposed to be testing.

  • Grond0Grond0 Member Posts: 6,978

    @Grond0 The whole formulation "blacks have less wealth than blacks" is flawed tbh, because it already carries the assumption that race is significant factor in wealth. You should be doing a multivariate analysis across let's say 20 factors to see what are the statistically significant factors. It's possible race isn't one.

    Like I said it's reasonable to test the hypothesis and it's theoretically possible that the sort of analysis you suggest would show that there is no causal link between race and wealth once you've adjusted for all other factors (education, age, class, marital status etc). Such an analysis would of course no doubt be hotly contested due to the complexity of the relationships, e.g. wealth may depend directly on class, but class itself may depend on race so that a chain of causation exists.

    Underlying the hypothesis that race is linked to wealth you have:
    - extremely large sample sizes to give confidence that results are meaningful
    - very large disparities in results to help rule out statistical anomalies
    - clear mechanisms that we know have existed that act between race and wealth (for instance laws limiting home ownership by certain races until recently in historical terms)
    Going back to my original point then, I still think that it is reasonable to make the hypothesis that there is a link between race and wealth.

    I've also seen the argument that if no causal relationship between race and wealth can be determined then it must be wrong to use public policy to address the apparent disparity. However, we take actions all the time based on symptoms not causes (think of health care). While it would certainly be preferable to understand the causal relationships underlying wealth distribution, if there is a huge apparent issue (which there clearly is) then it's not unreasonable to argue for taking action to address this while further research is being taken.

    Here are a couple of papers that have partially tried to adjust for other factors when considering wealth disparities, though I agree with you that more could be done.
    http://www.demos.org/sites/default/files/publications/RacialWealthGap_1.pdf
    http://globalpolicysolutions.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/Beyond_Broke_FINAL.pdf

    FinneousPJ
  • SorcererV1ct0rSorcererV1ct0r Member Posts: 2,166
    edited February 2018
    And the Japanese descendants who was incarcerated during ww2? The slavs who come to Americas fleeing communism with nothing? And no English Knowledge? And the Jews who come in ww2?

    --------------------------------------

    Other question. Only USA consider "latino" as a race in many statistics? Or there are any other country who do that? I wonder if USA become mixed race majority and "anglo" become a race, and doesn't matter if you are euro-descendant, asian-descendant or african-descendant, everyone from Anglo America is automatically considered "anglo"...

    A video showing some Argentine people


    An tourist in Gramado


    In fact there are a lot of diversity(not only racially) in south america. For example, Chile. In North you can find a desert and in south Tundra.

    Atacama Desert – Chile
    Atacama Desert

    Southern part

  • FinneousPJFinneousPJ Member Posts: 6,456
    edited February 2018
    Grond0 said:

    @Grond0 The whole formulation "blacks have less wealth than blacks" is flawed tbh, because it already carries the assumption that race is significant factor in wealth. You should be doing a multivariate analysis across let's say 20 factors to see what are the statistically significant factors. It's possible race isn't one.

    Like I said it's reasonable to test the hypothesis and it's theoretically possible that the sort of analysis you suggest would show that there is no causal link between race and wealth once you've adjusted for all other factors (education, age, class, marital status etc). Such an analysis would of course no doubt be hotly contested due to the complexity of the relationships, e.g. wealth may depend directly on class, but class itself may depend on race so that a chain of causation exists.

    Underlying the hypothesis that race is linked to wealth you have:
    - extremely large sample sizes to give confidence that results are meaningful
    - very large disparities in results to help rule out statistical anomalies
    - clear mechanisms that we know have existed that act between race and wealth (for instance laws limiting home ownership by certain races until recently in historical terms)
    Going back to my original point then, I still think that it is reasonable to make the hypothesis that there is a link between race and wealth.

    I've also seen the argument that if no causal relationship between race and wealth can be determined then it must be wrong to use public policy to address the apparent disparity. However, we take actions all the time based on symptoms not causes (think of health care). While it would certainly be preferable to understand the causal relationships underlying wealth distribution, if there is a huge apparent issue (which there clearly is) then it's not unreasonable to argue for taking action to address this while further research is being taken.

    Here are a couple of papers that have partially tried to adjust for other factors when considering wealth disparities, though I agree with you that more could be done.
    http://www.demos.org/sites/default/files/publications/RacialWealthGap_1.pdf
    http://globalpolicysolutions.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/Beyond_Broke_FINAL.pdf
    Surely you mean the analysis could show there is no significant correlation. Causality is a whole another issue. As for your second point we have statistical methods that can account for variables which are not independent. I'm sure @Ammar can elaborate more that, as I am not an expert. I simply use statistical methods as a tool.

    I am definitely of the opinion that if race is not significant predictor of wealth, then focusing on that when making policy to address wealth inequality is wrong. Let's say a hypothetical study finds a very large correlation with wealth and the number of people working full time per household and the lowest level of education of the adults in a household and that the degree to which race affects wealth is actually explained by racial differences in those main predictors, we can make better informed policy.

  • Mantis37Mantis37 Member Posts: 1,140
    Recently the Rooney rule - that minority candidates must also be interviewed for positions- has been imported to football in the UK from American football. This is an interesting example of giving more opportunities to candidates from minority backgrounds without explicit quotas, affirmative action in a slightly softer form. It's been welcomed by anti-racism organisations but will probably meet with a mixed reception within the profession.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/football/2018/01/10/fas-rooney-rule-decision-watershed-moment-says-kick/

    Grond0ThacoBell
  • Grond0Grond0 Member Posts: 6,978

    Surely you mean the analysis could show there is no significant correlation. Causality is a whole another issue. As for your second point we have statistical methods that can account for variables which are not independent. I'm sure @Ammar can elaborate more that, as I am not an expert. I simply use statistical methods as a tool.

    I don't mean there could be no correlation, no. There clearly is a correlation (that just means that knowing one variable allows you to predict another variable more accurately than guessing randomly). Including further variables in an analysis can't affect that correlation. What including those other variables could do is investigate whether there is a meaningful correlation, i.e. whether race affects wealth directly as opposed to both of them being affected in the same way by other variables.

    In practice I think there's no realistic chance that there is no causation as well as correlation, e.g. because:
    - race is an immutable characteristic, so not affected by other variables (except to the extent that definitional change is driven by other variables). It's therefore not possible for both race and wealth to be affected in the same way by another variable.
    - as I mentioned before there are clear historical mechanisms showing how race did affect wealth. As a considerable amount of wealth is inter-generational in nature those historical links would continue to have causal effects today even if there was no current causal link between income and race (and most studies suggest there still is such a link).

    FinneousPJ
  • FinneousPJFinneousPJ Member Posts: 6,456
    Grond0 said:

    Surely you mean the analysis could show there is no significant correlation. Causality is a whole another issue. As for your second point we have statistical methods that can account for variables which are not independent. I'm sure @Ammar can elaborate more that, as I am not an expert. I simply use statistical methods as a tool.

    I don't mean there could be no correlation, no. There clearly is a correlation (that just means that knowing one variable allows you to predict another variable more accurately than guessing randomly). Including further variables in an analysis can't affect that correlation. What including those other variables could do is investigate whether there is a meaningful correlation, i.e. whether race affects wealth directly as opposed to both of them being affected in the same way by other variables.
    I said significant correlation. The whole issue is whether there is a statistically significant correlation separate from other factors in a multivariate analysis. That is to say race is a predictor in itself and not as a function of other predictors. I elaborated this in my example above. Yes the graph presented before implies correlation, but the model is too simple to draw a meaningful conclusion.
    Grond0 said:

    In practice I think there's no realistic chance that there is no causation as well as correlation, e.g. because:
    - race is an immutable characteristic, so not affected by other variables (except to the extent that definitional change is driven by other variables). It's therefore not possible for both race and wealth to be affected in the same way by another variable.
    - as I mentioned before there are clear historical mechanisms showing how race did affect wealth. As a considerable amount of wealth is inter-generational in nature those historical links would continue to have causal effects today even if there was no current causal link between income and race (and most studies suggest there still is such a link).

    I don't understand your argument. For example it's entirely possible that blacks have less wealth because they have a lower level of education on average. Therefore the it might be good to start programs that enable blacks access to higher education rather than a vague ideology of positive discrimination. A multivariate analysis could show this while a univariate cannot.

    Balrog99
  • Balrog99Balrog99 Member Posts: 7,002
    As a scientist I agree with @FinneousPJ on this. There is likely more at play here than just race. Family dynamics is one factor. Culture is another.

    A prime example of this that mirrors the blacks is Native Americans. Many of them want to preserve their culture. That's fine by me but by not conforming to Western culture they won't be able to compete with that culture in what Westerners consider 'success' (ie: wealth). Is that fair? It's perfectly fair in that they're choosing to live by their norms, not mine. Unfortunately, they also get shafted by the dog eat dog nature of Western culture, have their lands confiscated because of natural resources for example, and that I don't like. They should be allowed to live the way they want to where they want to without undue interference.

    FinneousPJProont
This discussion has been closed.