Thursday, September 06, 2012

Article on "government-imposed racial labels"

Good article on "government-imposed racial labels" and the Fisher case from the Supreme Court's next term on affirmative action. Pardon my "political incorrectness," and "racism", but  IMHO, if they ever were, racial preferences are no longer justified.  "Equal Protection" means "equal protection."    As Justice  Harlan wrote (dissenting in Plessy v. Ferguson): "Our constitution is color-blind, and neither knows nor tolerates classes among citizens. In respect of civil rights, all citizens are equal before the law."   While racial preferences may have been motivated originally by good intentions, they have become a form of patronage and vote-buying. Preferences only add to the division of a badly-divided country.  Further, even if justified, such programs should be authorized only by a politically accountable source (governor, legislator).  Higher ed faculty and administrators generally lean far left and have no political (and rarely any other kind of serious accountability) accountability for rights violations.  Lawsuits are the only real remedy.  Of course, the taxpayer pays the costs for the legal defense of these policies.


  1. I could not agree more that blind justice is the only way to enforce equal protection. So long as race is used to preference decisions, there will never be equal protection of people's fundamental natural rights.

  2. The law should be color blind. Unfortunately, the law and regulations have been written over the last twenty years to protect a particular color class. That is the "green" class, mainly those who have the money. There is no equal opportunity for the poor in this country, and there probably never has been. Used to be people were held down from being successful due to their color or sex. They still are, but now they are held back by the tons of money available to corrupt the political system. The Citizens United ruling is a prime example of that. Corporations have become more important than people; mainly because they have more money. People are saying they want the government out of their business. They should be more scared of the corporations in their business. At least with government you have the possibility of change through the political process. With corporations, they will continue to act as they want, while holding the lie of the "carrot of opportunity" under the nose of the American people. People of color and non-christian religions, along with the poor, are continuously sneered at by those in the extreme conservative wing of the Republican party. When they complain of the welfare state, they don't admit that the majority of people on welfare are white. If they did, they might have to admit that they might not be as superior as they thought they were. Racial preferences should go, but then again, corporate preferences need to end also. Reasonable (there is that word again) regulation of the financial industry and a fair tax doctrine would help to level the playing field to give everyone a fair chance. Deregulation has put us in the position we are in now, along with cutting taxes to the point that it has hurt our country's ability to compete and survive.

  3. What??? Corporate welfare is driven by your so called watchful big-daddy government. The same government that doesn't have to depend on producing and/or selling any real goods or consumer services. A government that parasitically thrives upon your corporate monsters. For voters, regardless of race or economic status, the central government puts on a nice side show, pinching people's incomes just enough to make it hurt. This in concert with borrowing massively from other countries' wealth. While at the same time, the fed's printing press grinds out evermore make believe cash non-stop and totally UNREGULATED. It's not only the poor that suffer, but hard working families. Many of whom have their life investments in those surmised evil corporations. If the federal government would simply stand down and do the job it was originally designed to do, a fair playing field, economic balance and true prosperity would most certainly be the outcome.

  4. There will never be a fair playing field if the government does not regulate the corporations. They have proven over and over again that they will do anything to anyone for a profit. It was the lack of oversight of the banks and lending institutions by our government that caused the economic crisis we are in now. That and the massive amount of money ($10 trillion during the Bush Administration) spent on a useless war in Iraq that has made the region less safe than it was before we invaded. It was never done to destroy weapons of mass destruction. It was carried out to give Bush an easy military victory, and to let Cheney's buddies at Halliburton make huge profits.

    As to the government not producing consumer services; where do you get that? Government at all levels, Federal, State, and local, provide needed services that could only be fairly provided by the Public Sector. The interstate highways, police, fire, ems, emergency management, military, environmental protection, consumer protection, courts, the FAA, space exploration the list goes on and on.

    The government is not the answer to everything, but it is not the evil conspiracy that some want to make it. Used to be people respected the government and what it tried to do for the country. That all changed when Ronald Reagan decided to run for president. Suddenly, it was no longer patriotic to give your fair share of taxes to make things better for everyone. Greed took over and it was everyone for themselves. The politicians convinced people that government was the problem in order to allow their wealthy friends free reign to do whatever they wanted.

    The only trickle down that has happened has been warm and yellow. Right now taxes are lower than they have been since 1950. They are lower under Obama than under Bush. Taxes have been cut to the bone and the country is suffering because of it. You want to get rid of the deficits? Close just a few of the loop holes for the wealthy. Raise the capital gains tax. That would lower our deficit and force the wealthy to invest their money in real industry, rather than in loaning it back to the government.

    Theodore Roosevelt, a Republican and considered one of the best presidents in American history, said that the wealthy owed it to the country to give back some of their wealth to improve everyone's life. He fought to break the grip of the trusts and the conglomerates that destroy competition and hurt everyone's chance for success. He was wealthy himself, but he knew that with wealth came responsibility. The government continues to give breaks to the rich, who then invest overseas and continue to chop away at the wages and benefits of their employees in the United States. It is pretty bad when last year GE made $14 billion profit world wide, $5 billion that was taxable in the US, and did not pay any taxes. In addition to that, they received $3 billion in refunds on their taxes due to a tax system that gives everything to the rich. The really sad things is that GE, one of America's oldest and largest corporations, does more business outside the US than in it.

    1. Governments usually provide public services, not consumer. Not unless they own the means of production, like GM aka Government Motors. And only socialist wannabes see that as being good policy. In addition, most agencies you named are not needed or address domestic concerns belonging to the states. IMHO, It's time to rid the White House of Obama and Czars this November.

  5. I do agree corporate tax loopholes should be closed. But the country's wealthy earners have and do pay their "fair share". Not to mention that capital gains hurts all investors regardless of their economic status. The federal government was tasked to regulate interstate and foreign commerce. The primary purpose being to create a fair and stable environment for free market competition. I'm not against this type of regulation. But today's problem is the federal's unnecessary and improper over-regulation. It's at the point where they're picking winners, losers and overburdening businesses all for the benefit of bigger government. I'm neither a conspiracy theorist nor anti-government. But I do believe strongly that our central government is totally out of control. They've long ago overstepped their delegated boundaries. And rather than correct this course error, politicos continue to take us further off track. Our system of government is seeing its final days if we continue down the social progressives' well intended but misleading and destructive path. It's truly the proverbial road to Hell.

  6. Thanks guys: Don't have time to comment on everything. For me the issues are constitutional, not policy issues. However, I agree that the tax burden needs to be "adjusted," and we have to get serious about white-collar and wall-street crime. Government is not good or bad in itself. It is a "tool" that can be used or abused. In our consitutional democracy/republic,the government must comply with the Constitution. The Equal protection clause does not guarantee equality of outcome. It guarantees equal protection of the law. It was never intended to require equal incomes, equal achievement, etc. It was never intended to create an equal economic playing field, only a equal legal playing field. Only God could create a completely equal playing field. An obsession about non-legal inequalty leads to an oppressive government (e.g., Soviet Union, Red China). See Hayek's book, "The Road to Serfdom."

  7. I think that the framers of the Constitution had no idea that the world, and especially our country, would be facing the problems and challenges that it does today. I used to consider myself a conservative. I voted Republican pretty much every election since 1976 (except for slipping off into squirrelsville when I voted for Perot in 1992). Last election, I voted for Obama, and I believe I will probably vote for him again. While Obama may have had extreme views over the years, he is just like every other president, he moved to the middle of the road. I don't like far right groups, but then I also don't like far left groups. Extremist see only their own views and won't look at what any other side has to say. I think that is where the Grover Norquist run groups are coming from. I believe that our government should work together for what is good for the country, not what is good for the politicians or the political parties. That has been the problem and it has gotten worse since the early 1990's. I do believe that much of the hatred of Obama is fed by racial and not policy hatred. That does not mean that everyone who disagrees with the president is a racist. I just know from personal experience and remarks that I hear from friends that many have found the use of the "N-word" acceptable. A friend of mine works with a group of millionaire ranchers and is on all of their email lists. He said that he was absolutely shocked by the emails he began to receive after Obama was elected. I never would have believed it, if I had not heard and seen it myself over the last few years. Speaking with Secret Service agents, they said that from the moment he was elected there have been massive numbers of threats against him. One told me that they had approximately 2000 threats the last year of Bush's term. They had approximately 1 million the first year of Obama's term. No matter which way you cut it, that is unamerican and totally wrong. It goes against our democratic system and hurts all of us. There are winners and losers in every race. You would think that people would just accept it and try to do what is right for the country in a civil way. It does not help the country to have a conservative Supreme Court, just like it does not help to have a liberal one. Instead, it should be filled by reasonable and intelligent men and women who will do what is right within the bounds of the law, and not to pay off political debt. While Obama may have put in Sotomayor, previous presidents put in Clarence Thomas and John Roberts. Citizens United has done more to harm the country then any other ruling in the past ten years.

  8. I just learned the hard way the posts of more than 4,096 characters in Html are not accepted. I will thus repy in two seprate posts. PART I.
    Mark: Thanks for the long comment. I'm sorry that you felt compelled to play the race card. If Americans are so racist, why did they vote Obama in 4 years ago? Yes, there is still racism in America, but race is really a minor, side issue. FWIW, Public opinion polls show that racism infects only a small portion of the population. Further, what about the racists (e.g., Nation of Islam) in the black community who will vote for Obama just because he is black, and the fundamentalist Christians who will vote against Romney because he is a Mormon. I suspect that in the end, the bigots on both sides will cancel each other out. If Obama loses, sore-losers will again play this false card, further dividing the nation. Racism is a red-herring which distracts from the real issues. The upcoming election is really about fundamental differences in policy preferences, constitutional law, and the future direction of the country. IMHO, Obama is the closest thing we have had to a genuine ideologue in the White House. This is one of the few elections in American history where the gap between the candidates is large and real.
    Yes, Presidents and Senates have the power to put in whomever they want. It's been going on for decades. Obama continued the long tradition. Yes, Clarence Thomas is way out in right field, but that is not the point. Get over it! Get over Clarence Thomas! The issue is not the power to do so, the issue is the civil liberties threat that Obama's appointees provide. When is some President going to have the integrity to appoint neutral, law-oriented judges rather than political clones? I guess questionable practices can be justified by the fact that others have done it before.

    Do you have any empirical evidence to show the "harm" caused by Citizen's United. Congress had none, yet decided to infringe on First Amendment rights. The Supreme Court had previously decided that corporation have First Amendment rights. It strikes me as a danger signal when people talk about the "harm" caused by expanding First Amendment freedoms. Citizen's United was a politically motivated law. It is a smoke screen. It was a piece of "feel good" legislation that will not work. It was not designed to really clean up politics. The money allowed by Citizen's United is all above-board and there are disclosure requirement. Most of the folks in Washington don't want it cleaned up. The real solution to the problem of the corrupting effect of money are, among others: (1)Congressional ethics with strong rules and real enforcement (2) Strict laws with real enforcement (3) non-partisan voter education (4) citizen's putting private pressure on the media to provide fair, accurate, issue-oriented coverage (rather than obsessing over the polls and the horse-race). Yes, a politician is sacrificed once in a while in an attempt to convince the public that help is on the way. Opposition to Citizen's United is based on the non-sequitur that the way to solve problems that are allegedly caused by the First Amendment is to restrict the First Amendment. It's time to get over it, get a grip and move on. There is a proposed constitutional amendment in Congress to overrule Citizen's United. Contact your Congressman. I shudder to think of the precedent established by a constitutional amendment designed to limit First Amendment rights. What ever happened to the "land of the free . . ."? The Founding Father would be astounded by the theory that it is acceptable for government to limit otherwise lawful political speech. It is also based on the assumption that the average voter is an idiot and cannot figure out what is going on. Such an assumption is a dangerous one in a democracy. If these SuperPacs are so awful, why has Obama accepted so much money from them? Finally, as Justice Jackson wrote: "It is not the function of our government to keep the citizen from falling into error. It is the function of the citizen to keep the the government from falling into error." Sorry I don't have time to add more, including links, or correct all the typos, but I've got to move on. Thanks for the stimulating post.