Criminals at Work

“… if the people that are supposedly running the country aren’t actually performing any of the functions of governing, who is?” asks Foseti. Anybody who follows his writing will recognize where this is coming from. It belongs to a consistent (and thus informal) critique of formalist illusion. To confuse government  with constitutional structures, legislation, or political offices, is to be blind to the real machinery of power.

Steve Sailor offers a pointed example of this reality in the field of higher educational administration, whose authorities are adamant in the determination to pursue systematic racial discrimination against Asian candidates (in particular). ‘Constraining’ legislation, which explicitly criminalizes these practices, is treated as a formal obstacle course, rather than a prohibition. It complicates anti-meritocratic racial profiling, but is utterly incapable of preventing it.

As Sailer explains:

Back in 1996, Proposition 209 outlawing racial preferences was passed by California voters and became part of the state Constitution. State officials have ever since pursued a strategy of “massive resistance” to this unwelcome demand for equal treatment of the law, such as by switching the evaluation of University of California admissions from a cheap, mechanical system to an expensive, subjective “holistic” system.

The bulk of his post is devoted to a long quotation from Ruth Starkman’s NYT story on the work of an applications reader at Berkeley. This piece is entirely devoid of surprises to anyone with the slightest sensitivity to social reality, since it consists of a reasonably detailed explanation of malicious racial corruption in university admission procedures. Disingenuously, Starkman describes this dirty work as “… an extreme version of the American non-conversation about race,” asking: “Does Proposition 209 serve merely to push race underground?”

I suppose. Do anti-racketeering laws serve merely to push the mafia underground? If people are inflexibly determined to pursue an illegal agenda, laws drive them into the shadows. Perhaps the laws should be relaxed.

Or perhaps crucial public institutions should be ruthlessly purged of leftist criminals. It’s a tough call.

August 4, 2013admin 21 Comments »
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21 Responses to this entry

  • Handle Says:

    Grutter v. Bollinger – 539 U.S. 306 (2003)

    From Rehnquist’s Dissent

    But the correlation between the percentage of the Law School’s pool of applicants who are members of the three minority groups and the percentage of the admitted applicants who are members of these same groups is far too precise to be dismissed as merely the result of the school paying “some attention to [the] numbers.” As the tables below show, from 1995 through 2000 the percentage of admitted applicants who were members of these minority groups closely tracked the percentage of individuals in the school’s applicant pool who were from the same groups. [inserts table of racial admissions statistics here – try getting those from a university without a discovery court order, like blood from a stone!] …

    For example, in 1995, when 9.7% of the applicant pool was African-American, 9.4% of the admitted class was African-American. By 2000, only 7.5% of the applicant pool was African-American, and 7.3% of the admitted class was African-American. This correlation is striking. Respondents themselves emphasize that the number of underrepresented minority students admitted to the Law School would be significantly smaller if the race of each applicant were not considered. See App. to Pet. for Cert. 223a; Brief for Respondents Bollinger et al. 6 (quoting App. to Pet. for Cert. of Bollinger et al. 299a). But, as the examples above illustrate, the measure of the decrease would differ dramatically among the groups. The tight correlation between the percentage of applicants and admittees of a given race, therefore, must result from careful race based planning by the Law School. It suggests a formula for admission based on the aspirational assumption that all applicants are equally qualified academically, and therefore that the proportion of each group admitted should be the same as the proportion of that group in the applicant pool. See Brief for Respondents Bollinger et al. 43, n. 70 (discussing admissions officers’ use of “periodic reports” to track “the racial composition of the developing class”).

    Not only do respondents fail to explain this phenomenon, they attempt to obscure it. See id. , at 32, n. 50 (“The Law School’s minority enrollment percentages … diverged from the percentages in the applicant pool by as much as 17.7% from 1995–2000”). But the divergence between the percentages of underrepresented minorities in the applicant pool and in the enrolled classes is not the only relevant comparison. In fact, it may not be the most relevant comparison. The Law School cannot precisely control which of its admitted applicants decide to attend the university. But it can and, as the numbers demonstrate, clearly does employ racial preferences in extending offers of admission. Indeed, the ostensibly flexible nature of the Law School’s admissions program that the Court finds appealing, see ante , at 24–26, appears to be, in practice, a carefully managed program designed to ensure proportionate representation of applicants from selected minority groups.

    So, at the time, Michigan didn’t yet have a Proposition 209 – but after Grutter it passed Prop. 2 – the MCRI (overturned by the 6th Circuit, but going to SCOTUS next term). Supposedly, the MCRI and Prop 209 are still good law, but, just as Rehnquist pointed out a decade ago and Unz restated in his ‘Meritocracy’ article, the racial admissions statistics are still identical to those that would be produced by an official quota system.

    Consider one of my favorite lines – from Souter’s dissent to the companion case, Gratz v. Bollinger

    Without knowing more about how the Admissions Review Committee actually functions, it seems especially unfair to treat the candor of the admissions plan as an Achilles’ heel. In contrast to the college’s forthrightness in saying just what plus factor it gives for membership in an underrepresented minority, it is worth considering the character of one alternative thrown up as preferable, because supposedly not based on race. Drawing on admissions systems used at public universities in California, Florida, and Texas, the United States contends that Michigan could get student diversity in satisfaction of its compelling interest by guaranteeing admission to a fixed percentage of the top students from each high school in Michigan. …

    While there is nothing unconstitutional about such a practice, it nonetheless suffers from a serious disadvantage. It is the disadvantage of deliberate obfuscation. The “percentage plans” are just as race conscious as the point scheme (and fairly so), but they get their racially diverse results without saying directly what they are doing or why they are doing it. In contrast, Michigan states its purpose directly and, if this were a doubtful case for me, I would be tempted to give Michigan an extra point of its own for its frankness. Equal protection cannot become an exercise in which the winners are the ones who hide the ball.

    Ah, but the winners are always the ones who hide the ball.

    [Reply]

    admin Reply:

    “the winners are always the ones who hide the ball” — but it is does indicate an intriguing mismatch between substantial power and formal legitimacy.

    [Reply]

    Handle Reply:

    Well, that’s not the hidden ball Souter’s talking about. Abstractly – it’s a fundamental legal problem trying to police behavior (easy to demonstrate) but needing to also differentiate amongst different intents and mens rea, which is substantially harder (and very easy to lie about).

    So, you can’t have affirmative action ‘quotas’, but you can consider race, use it as a ceteris paribis tie-breaking ‘plus factor’ (but not with an explicit points system!) in order to achieve ‘critical mass’ (whatever that magical number is, which, apparently, is different for different ethnic groups, and, like Plutonium, can be too high for Asians) and the educational benefits of the compelling state interest of ‘diversity’ (whatever those benefits are, or to who they follow (everybody? just white kids?) – it’s funny how no one is actually asked to express them in a measurable way and then go about, you know, actually measuring them.)

    So, if you’re actually running a racial-quota system (which everybody, everywhere, knows everyone is actually doing), you can get away with it so long as you say you got there ‘coincidentally’, using only court-approved procedures.

    Proving intent is easy, actually, so long as it’s a conspiracy, which means you had a conversation about it with a witness or wrote a policy document.

    So, duh, the trick is to not have those things, which means ‘telling without telling’. That’s why Ruth Starkman wrote about all the nebulous talk about ‘these kids’ and:

    Why did I hear so many times from the assistant director? I think I got lost in the unspoken directives. Some things can’t be spelled out, but they have to be known. Application readers must simply pick it up by osmosis, so that the process of detecting objective factors of disadvantage becomes tricky. It’s an extreme version of the American non-conversation about race.

    Yep. Most of living the modern American life is about having, understanding, and navigating (with varying degrees of success) all the nonconversables.

    [Reply]

    admin Reply:

    Isn’t all of that exactly racketeering, as practiced by intelligent mafiosi? I’m sure they’re just as adept at not exactly saying what is formally illegal to say, speaking in code, conjuring up functional systems of allusion, getting what they want done without ever articulating it (in a way that can be recorded and reproduced) … the only real difference is that the political will exists to stamp out Italian organized crime syndicates, but not to eliminate left-administrative organized crime networks.

    Handle Reply:

    Oh, one more interesting thing. So, another way to try to demonstrate ‘pretextual intent’ is by means of statistics (with which the courts are, sadly, never comfortable – though, with some of the slippery tricks possible to perform, can you blame them?).

    Using statistics against the non-quota quotas is precisely what the plaintiff in Grutter was trying to do, and that’s why Rehnquist thought it important to get into his dissent, but, alas, no matter, it didn’t work.

    You know where it does work? And where not only is it ok, but it is presumptively ok, and with an officially approved magic number of 80% deviation (no matter what profession or what the demographic statistics say)? And where it’s always automatically such a strong factor that the criminal process evidential burden shifts to the defense to prove itself innocent if the EEOC or the DOJ CRD gets a hold of you?

    Well, ‘disparate impact’ and ’employment discrimination’ (ANY perceived slight in hiring, firing, pay, promotion, or even ‘work environment’ factors like friendliness, hostility, etc.). This is the whole reason meaningless Human Resources departments exists – to maintain paper trails of magic-spell documents so companies can immunize themselves against maybe half of the most ludicrous suits.

    You make an allegation and the the government becomes your free law firm but you get to collect the settlement! Awesome! What have you got to lose? Nothing!

    So, if Berkley or the University of Michigan has a black quota and says it’s being ‘holistic’ and it’s a ‘coincidence’ – then it wins by hiding the ball and distributing unspoken directives (exactly as Souter said would happen). But if your company (or New York City Fire Department – thanks George W Bush!) gets 100 white applications and 100 black application and hires 61 whites and 39 blacks, then watch out!

    VXXC Reply:

    It’s becoming rapidly more conversable.

    Probably not in the Beltway.

    But in the nation at large, it rapidly became more conversable the second week of Nov 2012.

    Posted on August 4th, 2013 at 4:37 pm Reply | Quote
  • Discipline Says:

    “Or perhaps crucial public institutions should be ruthlessly purged of leftist criminals.”

    How? Minorities don’t purge majorities.

    [Reply]

    admin Reply:

    Practically speaking, it’s a recommendation for a post-secessionary regime.

    [Reply]

    Discipline Reply:

    Let’s get this show on the road, then.

    [Reply]

    Posted on August 4th, 2013 at 6:36 pm Reply | Quote
  • VXXC Says:

    What’s wrong with first the purge of leftist criminals then relaxation?

    [Reply]

    admin Reply:

    That would, indeed, be best.

    [Reply]

    Posted on August 4th, 2013 at 8:17 pm Reply | Quote
  • Alrenous Says:

    Either they can be lustrated or they can’t be.

    If they can be, well, good work? But it seems they can’t be. Since it’s going to happen anyway, let them do it openly.

    Of course much of the proggie program simply wouldn’t work if they had to do it openly. Public opinion may be mostly irrelevant, but not completely irrelevant. Which I guess means just let them do it covertly, since you don’t have a choice. It is one of the many ways public oversight is worse than no oversight at all.

    So what are the lessons for next time?
    Since transparency could restrain government, transparency is impossible.
    Since laws can’t restrain government, anti-government laws are a waste.
    One of the foundational simplifications of democracy is it lets you throw the bastards out, Which means democracy is impossible because throwing the bastards out is impossible. (More precisely, rapidly becomes impossible.)
    Yes no maybe? What else?

    Unless you can think of a bureau that would be inherently, unavoidably transparent.

    For example, you could try a Bureau of Government Oversight, with a mission specifically to cut budgets whenever they wanted. But it would basically be a Bureau of Firing People, which is already very very impossible.

    [Reply]

    admin Reply:

    Any regime with a BGO of this kind would represent a huge advance in practical civilization. Thinking incrementally, however, the first step is withdrawal of legitimacy from the existing regime, and exposing it as a deeply-rooted criminal conspiracy is important for that.

    [Reply]

    spandrell Reply:

    The Republic of China Constitution has that. It hasn’t worked very well though.

    [Reply]

    admin Reply:

    It reminds me of the old joke: Why is there only one Monopoly Commission?

    Two BGOs are probably needed to work — at a minimum — with the constitutional provision being that they each get to keep 50% of the cost savings from down-sizing other parts of the government (including each other), thus incentivizing a maximum of hyper-aggressive vulture behavior.

    [Reply]

    spandrell Reply:

    That’s when the monopoly commission starts opening branch agencies with the money they’re taking from the rest of the government. Fast forward 100 years and the monopoly commission *is* the whole government.

    Alrenous Reply:

    spandrell,

    That’s when the monopoly commission starts opening branch agencies

    Is that what Control Yuan is doing? I expect the BGO idea to fail, the question is how fast and in what way.

    I expect adding ‘fire people whenever they want’ to ‘audit’ in the list of responsibilities would help. Again, the question is how much and for how long.

    admin,

    the first step is withdrawal of legitimacy

    I think that would work, short term. I’m in favour.

    However, thinking about it, what is legitimate is determined by what the masses believe about the political formula. What the masses believe is determined by the elites du jour. How do you undermine the legitimacy of your opponents without having already won?

    Before a few moments ago, I liked to say that government is clearly illegitimate if it needs to hide. But transparency is impossible. In any case, fooling the masses is difficult to avoid, even on purpose. Shockingly, the layman is incompetent.

    It comes back to opting out of taxes. That, at least, is simple enough and impossible to opacify. If you want something that’s like democracy but isn’t purely symbolic, let subjects withhold taxes. (Of course, also let the state withdraw citizenship.)

    [Reply]

    admin Reply:

    “What the masses believe is determined by the elites du jour. How do you undermine the legitimacy of your opponents without having already won?” — Whilst there’s certainly a lot to this, it can’t be a perfectly sealed loop, or power would be invincible by definition. Friction between elite factions, external influences, excessive complacency, logic snarl-ups, narrative-splintering events, grit among the cogs, chance … opportunities arise to complicate the dominant story-line.

    spandrell Reply:

    I haven’t much idea, but my guess is that the Control Yuan is staffed by party members and thus tightly controlled by the powers that be.

    spandrell Reply:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Control_Yuan

    [Reply]

    VXXC Reply:

    RE-BOOT

    [Reply]

    Posted on August 4th, 2013 at 10:27 pm Reply | Quote

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