Life's Better Ideas

Occasional links to, and comments on, ideas that I think will make this a better world, and remarks about things that need fixing, too.

Location: Denver, Colorado, United States

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Hard Choices, session 6

I'm taking a course at Denver University, Hard Choices in Public Policy. The instructor is former Colorado governor Richard Lamm.

Race and Affirmative Action were today's topics.

Basic question: What should be America's public policy agenda on race.

Hubert Humphrey: "If the Senator can find in Title VII ... any language which provides that an employer will have to hire on the basis of percentage or quota related to color, race, religion, or national origin, I will start eating the pages one after another, because it is not in there." See source

Building trades were first target. Nixon's Philadelphia plan led to Affirmative Action. Desperate for anything that looked like progress. Carpenters and Plumbers also targeted.

Aristotle - Injustice is treating equals unequally or unequals equally.

Colin Powell - Discriminating for one group means discriminating against another.

Supreme Court cases (recent) Gruffer vs Bollanger and Gratz vs Bollanger.

Human capital, talent pool.

Bernard Lewis - 2 questions - 1) What did we do wrong? 2) Who did this to us? Which one you ask is determined by what kind of culture you live in.

Is it time to reconsider Affirmative Action?

Number of black officials up 6x over 40 years ago.

Bowling Alone - book.

FBI's most wanted list contains 22 young arab males. obvious case for profiling.

AA helped middle class blacks, not the poor ones.

Immigrants and AA.

Entitled by the 64 and 65 civil rights act. 76 percent of immigrants qualify for AA. Competition between Latinos and Blacks. Why do Latinos get AA irrespective of education and income? Historic discrimination against Jews. Why don't they qualify for AA? AA has failed poor black underclass because it's race based, not economic based. Most discriminated against groups include Japanese, Jews, Chinese, and Koreans, none of whom get AA.

Book Underdevelopment Is a State of Mind by Lawrence E. Harrison.

Culture matters - socializing mechanisms. Home. School. Church. Groups have culture traits, values, and attitudes.

Contrast Argentina vs Australia, Nicaragua vs Costa Rica, Ghana vs South Korea.

Ruth Bennedict "No man ever looks at the world with pristine eyes. He sees it edited by a definite set of customs and institutions and ways of thinking." I think from Patterns of Culture

McWhorter Losing the Race 1) Cult of Victimology, 2) Separatism, 3) Anti-Intellectualism.

Juan Williams Enough: The Phony Leaders, Dead-End Movements, and Culture of Failure That Are Undermining Black America--and What We Can Do About It

Fate vs Free Will. Minorities more likely to accept Fate as a cultural trait.

No Excuses. KIPP schools ask kids in 5th grade "what college are you planning to go to?"

Hispanic 50 percent dropout rate.

Lionel Sosa The Americano Dream: How Latinos Can Achieve Success in Business and in Life. Escaping cultural shackles. No dialog on cultural issues. Blame whites.

Malcom X. Economic power, not political power.

Hard to criticise culture.

David Landes The Wealth and Poverty of Nations: Why Some Are So Rich and Some So Poor

Harrison: 1) Fair Play, 2) Education, 3) Health, 4) Experience Criticism? 5) Skills, 6) ?, 7) ?

Patrick Moynihan - conservative truth - it's the culture; liberal truth - you can change the culture.

Rangel - Latin America was settled by rejecting modernism and rationalism. Iberian peninsula catholicism. economic development. culture makes all the difference.

Humility leads to pacificism. How many generations to change a culture?


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