When you can't live without bananas

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Saturday, July 29, 2023

Links - 29th July 2023 (2 - Titan submersible implosion)

Meme - Sub at Titanic wreck: "JUST IMAGINE WHAT IT MUST'VE BEEN LIKE..."
*BZZKT* *sub loses power*

Meme - "Y all are super judgy about this submarine thingy looking for the titanic considering most of you will ride a Ferris Wheel that a meth-head with three teeth set up in a grocery store parking lot in a half hour."

Interview with OceanGate CEO Stockton Rush - YouTube - "When I started business one of the things you'll find there are other sub operators out there but they they typically um have uh gentlemen who are ex-military submariners and they, you'll see a whole bunch of 50 year old white guys. I wanted our team to be younger to be inspirational"
Why Stockton Rush didn't hire '50-year-old white guys' for Titanic sub tours - "Stockton Rush, 61, added that such expertise was unnecessary because “anybody can drive the sub” with a $30 video game controller."

BBC Radio 4 - Best of Today, Search for the missing Titanic submarine - "‘The experience going down was very relaxing. This is, it's a beautifully designed submarine that feels almost spa-like on the inside. So even though there's five people just sitting on the floor of something that's about the size of the minivan, it's very comfortable and it's very relaxing and, I fell asleep on the way down. It's just two and a half hours uh of dropping in utter quiet and, there is a porthole but all you see is blackness going down and then when we touch bottom, we knew we were within 500 meters of the Titanic. But we didn't know in what direction and we spent a good 90 minutes just sort of doing a random walk on the bottom of the ocean just flailing around trying to find, you know, the biggest boat in the world is somewhere near us but we couldn't see it in the darkness… with 20 minutes left, 20 minutes before we had to resurface we finally saw the Titanic and I have to say it was just enough in our case for a highlights tour. We just got there, looked at the anchor, looked at the porthole, looked at the bow of the ship and then we had to go back up and it shows you the unpredictability of it all and that the next day they sent another five passengers down to see it. And they had a good three hours to explore the Titanic.’"

Titanic submersible: documents reveal multiple concerns raised over safety of vessel - "The expedition that the Titan submersible and its crew were undergoing was tremendously risky, according to industry experts and former passengers. The Titan had to withstand the pressure from being almost 4,000 metres (13,100ft) below sea level – the depth at which the Titanic came to rest – and faced the threat of getting lost or losing contact with the surface.  While it is too early to say what happened to the vessel, experts have raised questions over whether all appropriate safety measures were followed... the New York Times published a letter written in 2018 by industry leaders in the submersible vessel field, warning Rush of possible “catastrophic” problems with Titan’s development.  The Marine Technology Society, an industry group made up of ocean engineers, technologists, policymakers and educators, expressed “concern regarding the development of Titan and the planned Titanic expeditions” and warned against the “current experimental approach adopted by OceanGate”.  At issue was whether the Titan vessel would be independently assessed by industry regulators or risk assessors. The Marine Technology Society was critical of OceanGate issuing marketing material that stated the Titan design would “meet or exceed the DNV-GL safety standards” while apparently not intending to have the vessel assessed by that same organisation... Almost a year after the Marine Technology Society letter was sent, OceanGate published a blogpost explaining why it would not have Titan certified. In the post, the company acknowledged that classification assures “vessels are designed, constructed and inspected to accepted standards”, but claimed it did little to “weed out sub-par vessel operators”. The company claimed “operator error” was responsible for the vast majority of accidents.  OceanGate was also concerned that the classing process could slow down development and act as a drag on innovation. “Bringing an outside entity up to speed on every innovation before it is put into real-world testing is anathema to rapid innovation,” it said.  In an interview with the Smithsonian magazine in 2019, Rush complained that the commercial sub industry had not “innovated or grown – because they have all these regulations”... In defending its decision not to have the Titan classed, the company highlighted what it said were safety innovations onboard, including “carbon fiber pressure vessels and a real-time (RTM) hull health monitoring system”."

Titanic Sub Avoided Safety Rules by Diving in International Waters: Experts - "In a 2022 CBS report, journalist David Pogue was made to sign a waiver before embarking on a Titanic expedition on the submersible saying that the Titan was an "experimental vessel" that had not been "approved or certified by any regulatory body, and could result in physical injury, emotional trauma or death."   In the report, Rush insisted that submersible travel was safe, yet admitted there were risks involved.  "You know, there's a limit. You know, at some point, safety just is pure waste. I mean, if you just want to be safe, don't get out of bed," he said.   "Don't get in your car. Don't do anything. At some point, you're going to take some risk, and it really is a risk/reward question. I think I can do this just as safely by breaking the rules," Rush told the outlet."
Damn government getting in the way of innovation! The private sector is always superior!

Missing Titanic Sub Once Faced Massive Lawsuit Over Depths It Could Safely Travel To - "in a 2018 case, OceanGate employee David Lochridge, a submersible pilot, voiced concerns about the safety of the sub. According to a press release, Lochridge was director of marine operations at the time, “responsible for the safety of all crew and clients.”   The concerns Lochridge voiced came to light as part of a breach of contract case related to Lochridge refusing to greenlight manned tests of the early models of the submersible over safety concerns. Lochridge was fired, and then OceanGate sued him for disclosing confidential information about the Titan submersible. In response, Lochridge filed a compulsory counterclaim where he alleged wrongful termination over being a whistleblower about the quality and safety of the submersible...
'Given the prevalent flaws in the previously tested 1/3 scale model, and the visible flaws in the carbon end samples for the Titan, Lochridge again stressed the potential danger to passengers of the Titan as the submersible reached extreme depths. The constant pressure cycling weakens existing flaws resulting in large tears of the carbon. Non-destructive testing was critical to detect such potentially existing flaws in order to ensure a solid and safe product for the safety of the passengers and crew.'...
'At the meeting Lochridge discovered why he had been denied access to the viewport information from the Engineering department—the viewport at the forward of the submersible was only built to a certified pressure of 1,300 meters, although OceanGate intended to take passengers down to depths of 4,000 meters. Lochridge learned that the viewport manufacturer would only certify to a depth of 1,300 meters due to experimental design of the viewport supplied by OceanGate, which was out of the Pressure Vessels for Human Occupancy (“PVHO”) standards. OceanGate refused to pay for the manufacturer to build a viewport that would meet the required depth of 4,000 meters.'... Paying passengers wouldn’t know or be informed about Lochridge’s concerns, according to his complaints. They also wouldn’t be informed “that hazardous flammable materials were being used within the submersible.”"

OceanGate Accountant Said She Quit When Asked to Be Chief Sub Pilot - "A former director of finance and administration for OceanGate said the company's CEO, Stockton Rush, asked her in 2018 to become the chief pilot for the Titan submersible — a suggestion that led to her quitting her job. The former director — who was not named — talked to The New Yorker's Ben Taub about her encounter with Rush. Rush asked her about becoming the submersible's head pilot after firing David Lochridge, the submarine pilot originally billed for the role, she told Taub... Soon after Lochridge was fired, Rush asked the finance director to fill in for the pilot, she told Taub. "It freaked me out that he would want me to be head pilot, since my background is in accounting," she told the New Yorker... The former director added that some of OceanGate's engineers were teenagers when they worked for the company, while others were in their early twenties, the New Yorker reported. Some of the engineers were also paid $15 per hour at one point, the former director told Taub."

The game controller on the missing Titanic sub, explained - The Washington Post - "video game controllers have been used in real-life vehicles all over the world for more than a decade, often by the military... Military sources around the world all tend to cite the same reason: Younger recruits are intimately familiar with the user interface and ergonomics of a video game controller. And because Microsoft owns the Xbox brand, Xbox controllers are compatible with a variety of computer operating systems such as Windows... What is notable, however, is the specific kind of controller the Titanic vessel used. It’s been identified as a Logitech G-F710 controller, released in 2011. Logitech is known for high-quality video game paraphernalia. The most worrying detail of the controller is that it operates wirelessly through Bluetooth. All of the military applications described above have controllers wired in, so there’s no risk of disconnection and any issues regarding radio transmission... Amazon reviews for the controller, which retails at $29.99, are hit or miss. The controller generally works, but a few reviews note its wireless nature leads to disconnection issues."

Matt Walsh on Twitter - "There is a very large contingent of people who laugh gleefully when one of Elon Musk's rockets explode on takeoff or a submersible with wealthy adventurers is lost to the sea.   These are people whose envy and dissatisfaction with their own mediocre, unimpressive lives have driven them to despise anyone who does anything different, bold, or daring. They take pleasure in failure because they will never have any successes of their own to celebrate.   I guess pathetic assholes of this type have always existed. But it worries me that they are so numerous in our culture, and that over time they are only becoming more and more cartoonishly sadistic."
Some people claim that they deserve to be mocked because they did stupid things. Presumably poor people who do stupid things should be mocked too. One claimed that they knew what they were doing was dangerous so they deserved it. I asked what other cases counted, and if that extended to girls who wear short skirts and go into dark alleys at night, but didn't get an answer

Titanic Director Criticizes OceanGate's Ignored Warnings: A Tragedy Repeated? - "James Cameron, the acclaimed director of the film Titanic, recently spoke out about the OceanGate expedition, expressing regret for not being more vocal about his concerns prior to the Titan submersible’s ill-fated journey... Drawing a chilling parallel between the Titan tragedy and the sinking of the Titanic, Cameron said, “It’s about warnings that were ignored.” He told Reuters that the Titanic is at the bottom of the ocean not due to the materials it was made from but because of “bad seamanship.”  Cameron recounted how the Titanic’s captain was warned of icebergs ahead on a moonless night, yet chose to proceed at full speed for reasons still debated. This, he points out, reflects a haunting similarity to the recent tragedy involving the Titan submersible.  In a scathing remark, Cameron emphasized the tragic irony by saying that now, in the same spot, “there’s one wreck lying next to the other wreck, for the same damn reason.”"
If he had said anything, he would've been dismissed with "OK, boomer"

Meme - "'Titanic' director James Cameron on the 'catastrophic implosion' of Titan submersible: "I'm struck by the similarity of the Titanic disaster itself, where the captain was repeatedly warned about ice ahead of his ship and yet he steamed at full speed into an ice field.""
GayLumberjack @gay_lumberj...: "Noted submarine expert James Cameron"
Luath @Luath9: "Literally has dived to the Titanic on multiple occasions, made the highest grossing movie ever about the Titanic, built his own fucking submarine, that worked, and most notably for our purposes, did not get turned into human salsa by his own invention."
GayLumberjack @gay_lumberjack: "are you his publicist?"

stonking.com on Twitter - "CEO Stockton Rush: "I have broken some rules to make this. (…) The carbon fibre and titanium there is a rule that you don’t do that. Well, I did.“ #Titanic #OceanGate #Titan"

stonking.com on Twitter - "This is so messed up, poor kid :( The 19-year-old ended up going aboard OceanGate's 22-foot submersible because the trip fell over Father's Day weekend and he was eager to please his dad, who was passionate about the lore of the Titanic Azmeh Dawood — the older sister of Pakistani businessman Shahzada Dawood — told NBC News that her nephew, Suleman, informed a relative that he "wasn't very up for it" and felt "terrified" about the trip to explore the wreckage of the Titanic.  Source: NBC News"
I saw leftists cheering the deaths because the passengers were foolhardy and chose to go on the trip and signed waivers. I wonder how they feel about celebrating the deaths of Muslim People of Colour. And if a poor person signs a waiver, does that still absolve a company of legal liability for negligence?

Meme - "MEMES OF 2023
January Maegan Hall
February Chinese Balloon
March Silicon Valley Bank
April Bud Light
May Gorlock the Destroyer
June Titanic Submarine"

‘You know who’s not at the bottom of the ocean?’: Women say they never would have boarded the OceanGate sub - "In a TikTok posted on Wednesday, GiGi Marie says she wants to "point out one minor detail that nobody's talking about with this whole submarine thing."  "You know who's not at the bottom of the ocean?" GiGi Marie says in her video, which on Thursday had over 3 million views. "Women." Many female commenters said that her video resonated with them...   However, women have already ventured to the ruins of the Titanic: In 2022, Chelsea Kellogg went on an OceanGate voyage"
When you explain the gender wage gap

Meme - "I want you to assemble a rescue team and find the Titanl
Oh fuck, you're gonna make me dive
Fuck, it's so deep!
Wanna try the other window?
Team, I think we can go deeper
Oh fuck put us back up!"

Meme - "I find rich ppl die on water plane funny
Because I am full of envy and have no sense of personal achievement
Death of human good because they have more money than me"

Meme - "Do submersibles have something similar to an aircraft's Emergency Locator Transmitter (ELT) that could be detected by searchers?"
David Pogue @Pogue: "This submersible does not have any kind of beacon like that. On my expedition last summer, they did indeed get lost for about 5 hours, and adding such a beacon was discussed..."
"Could you elaborate on how you got lost for 5 hours? What was that experience like and how were you able to surface?"
David Pogue @Pogue: "To be clear, I was not on the sub that day-! was on the ship at the surface, in the control room. They could still send short texts to the sub, but did not know where it was. It was quiet and very tense, and they shut off the ship's internet to prevent us from tweeting."
"Is there a reason that detail didn't make it into the show?"

CBS News' David Pogue defends OceanGate CEO Stockton Rush after Titan tragedy: "Nobody thought anything at the time" - "Pogue expressed uncertainty about why information about the Navy's knowledge that it detected "an acoustic anomaly consistent with an implosion" wasn't announced earlier, potentially saving additional search and rescue resources.   "It would have been nice for the Navy to let people know," Pogue said. "But think of all those planes flying back and forth, spending millions of tax dollars searching on the surface. All of that could have been avoided. I don't know the internal workings of the Navy, but personally, I think I would have informed the searchers."... A clip has resurfaced of sub pilot and OceanGate CEO Stockton Rush giving an interview in 2021, in which he says he's "broken some rules" to make trips to the Titanic possible for his company. The interview was done with vlogger Alan Estrada, who joined him on a trip that year to the Titanic wreck aboard the Titan vessel.  "I'd like to be remembered as an innovator. I think it was General [Douglas] MacArthur who said, 'You're remembered for the rules you break,'" Rush said. "And I've broken some rules to make this. I think I've broken them with logic and good engineering behind me."... "This was a Princeton-educated aerospace engineer. He built and designed his own airplanes. He built and designed previous submersibles. This one was designed in conjunction with NASA. It had been to the sea floor 20 times without incident," he said. "Yes, it looks terrible now, and yes, we see things that were missed, but at the time, nobody thought anything at the time.""

What happened to the missing Titanic sub? Our reporter who rode on vessel explains possible scenarios - "Even if the vessel is on the surface, it cannot be opened from the inside, so air supply would still be an issue... Pogue said "things go wrong all the time in this business," and that one attempt he made to see the wreck site last year "only lasted 37 feet down" before the vessel encountered a mechanical problem and had to be hoisted out of the water."

Meme - Narwitz @SophiaNarwitz: "The Blizzard developer who previously went on a moral crusade against the video game Six Days In Fallujah, going so far as to ask governments to ban it is... *checks notes* openly celebrating the deaths of five people. One of which is a 19 year old."
Osama Dorias @osamadorias: "Billionaires are a cancer. Their existence is an act of extreme violence. Their deaths are a cause for celebration."
Daniel Shipwreck @mxdshipwreck: "People asking "why do people hate billionaires?" a lot during the submersible discussion and here's the core of it for me: Every day the mega-rich could vastly reduce or even end mass suffering on a global scale with little cost to themselves. Every day they choose not to."

OceanGate CEO Knew in 2021 He'd 'Broken Some Rules' With Titanic Sub - "Years before the tragedy, Rush said in a 2021 interview with the Spanish YouTuber alanxelmundo that he hoped to be remembered as an innovator.  "I think it was General MacArthur who said: 'You're remembered for the rules you break,'" Rush said, smiling.  The CEO acknowledged that he'd "broken some rules" with the Titan's manufacturing but was confident that his design was sound. "I think I've broken them with logic and good engineering behind me. Carbon fiber and titanium? There's a rule you don't do that," he told alanxelmundo. "Well, I did."  The Titan's hull, which was made to withstand crushing deep-sea pressure, was constructed with aerospace-grade carbon fiber that OceanGate said was designed under an agreement with NASA.  But submersible hulls are typically made using solid metals like steel or titanium. In 2017, Rush told the magazine CompositesWorld that he used carbon fiber for the Titan — then called the Cyclops 2 — because it would eliminate the need for syntactic foam, an expensive but durable material often used to make submersibles.  In his 2021 interview with alanxelmundo, Rush said the choice of material was more about pioneering ocean exploration. "It's picking the rules that you break that are the ones that will add value to others and add value to society," Rush said. "And that really, to me, is about innovation."  Rush expressed excitement about the possibilities that his submersible could offer humanity in the deep ocean... The CEO was confronted in 2018 with multiple concerns about the Titan's safety... Rush was sent a letter from the Marine Technology Society, a leading group of experts who expressed "unanimous concern" about the "experimental approach" of the Titan.  And in 2017, a consultant for OceanGate told Bloomberg that he left the company in its early years because he felt Rush was a "full-speed-ahead, damn-the-torpedoes kind of guy" in an industry that required absolute precision. It's unclear whether any of these concerns were addressed by OceanGate later, but Rush has previously complained about safety measures and regulations."

OceanGate CEO Said Titan Built With Old Boeing Material: Would-Be Passenger - "OceanGate CEO Stockton Rush told him that for the vessel's hull, the company used cut-price Boeing carbon fiber that was past its airplane shelf life... Boeing initially declined to comment, but later said the company "has found no record of any sale of composite material to OceanGate or its CEO."... OceanGate's website previously claimed that the vessel was designed and engineered "in collaboration" with Boeing.  Boeing has denied any involvement in the design of the Titan... Rush previously touted the cost-saving benefits of carbon fiber versus the standard titanium and claimed in a 2021 presentation that "carbon fiber is three times better on a strength-to-buoyancy basis than titanium."  "And underwater, that's what you care about," he added.  A 2017 CompositesWorld report said the initial carbon-fiber hull design was prepared on just a six-week deadline, though GeekWire reported the vessel was rebuilt later.  Before the tragic trip, Rush publicly discussed taking risks to pursue what he called "innovation," saying in 2021 that he knew he had "broken some rules" by using a carbon-fiber hull for the vessel."

Former Titan Passenger Said Sub Lost Communication 'Every Single Time' - "A former passenger of the Titan submersible said he took four dives in it, including to the Titanic shipwreck, and that there were communication issues on every one of them... As a submersible, the Titan could not launch and return to port the way a submarine can and instead relied on a surface vessel to carry it to and from the dive spot.  The submersible also relied on the surface ship for navigation, as GPS is not an option 13,000 feet below sea level. The surface vessel sent text messages to people in the submersible, who then used a video-game controller to navigate according to the instructions."

Meme - Marxist777: "Why the Titanic Submarine Incident will be a Victory for the working class
Here is a thread:
(As of this tweet they have 5 Hours of oxygen left)
Every single billionaire is an enemy of the people, who's entire life has been spent exploiting the working class masses. Billionaire's luxurious and lavish lifestyles are a direct result of the exploitation of the common working class person.
You should feel no sympathy for these people, they have caused the suffering of millions of people across the entire planet.
Also the notion that it is any different if one of them is a 'child' is completely absurd. A 19 year old is no child, and has actively taken part in the exploitation of millions via his father. *Guillotine* REWARD THEM FOR THE WORLD THEY CREATED."
Weird. Liberals keep telling us wokeness is about empathy

Meme - "IT IS TIME TO GO."
"Was I a good submarine?"
Naturally, the commies want to censor others for inciting violence

Meme - "Claim: OceanGate, the company behind the submersible that went missing in June 2023 on a Titanic wreckage exploration, relied on Elon Musk's Starlink satellites to provide communications during the expedition.
Rating: True
Context: Starlink is a subsidiary of SpaceX, which Elon Musk runs. However, we do not know how much Starlink is responsible for the loss of contact with the submersible, nor the reasons behind that loss of contact.
Claim: OceanGate's submersible that went missing in June 2023 on a Titanic wreckage exploration relied on Elon Musk's SpaceX-run Starlink satellites to provide communications during the expedition.
Rating: Unproven
Context: Starlink is a subsidiary of SpaceX, which Elon Musk runs, and OceanGate indeed said it was relying on the company for the exhibition, which included the submersible and a mothership - that is, a vessel that stays above water to navigate and communicate with land during the exhibition. It's unknown if, or to what extent, Starlink was used by the submersible itself at any point, or whether it was only used by the mothership. That said, we do not know how much Starlink is responsible for the loss of contact with the submersible, nor the reasons behind that loss of contact.
Claim: OceanGate's submersible that went missing in June 2023 on a Titanic wreckage exploration relied on Elon Musk's SpaceX-run Starlink satellites to provide communications during the expedition.
Rating: False
Context: Starlink is a subsidiary of SpaceX, which Elon Musk runs, and OceanGate indeed said it was relying on the company for the expedition, which included the submersible and a mothership - that is, a vessel that stays above water to navigate and communicate with land during the expedition, However, scientists have pointed out that the submersible would have had an acoustic link with the surface vessel and could not have relied on satellite internet to communicate with the surface. How, or under what circumstances, the mothership used Starlink technology during the exhibition remained unknown."
Ahh... Snopes does it again! In the space of a day, too
Some people defended Snopes by claiming it was good they corrected themselves, not seeing that this shows the contingency of "fact" checking, realising that this shows that "fact checkers" aren't the gospel truth or grasping that they had no idea what they were talking about and if they were, they wouldn't have needed to change it twice (since the truth was apparent from the start). Of course, this won't step them from throwing out "fact checks" to shut down debate

Journal of Scientific Shitposting (JoSS) - "Turns out that there's nothing wrong with shitposting about the Titan sub. In fact, we're part of a storied practice dating back over a hundred years ago. They were shitposting about the Titanic back then too!"
Yesterday's Print on Twitter - "The Evening News, Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania, April 25, 1912" (Thread)

Meme - Paul-Henri Nargeolet: "I was one of the first explorers of the titanic and served 22 years in the navy"
Shahzada and Suleman Dawood: "Mine and my fathers family supported charities. And formed a trust to help disadvantaged young people become farmers and learn about agriculture"
Hamish Harding: "I established a non-profit dedicated to world exploration and science-related education for youth"
Leftist: "I think rich people die on sea plane funny because i am jealous hateful and contribute nothing to society"

Meme - Jonathan Snow: "I dove much deeper than the Titanic in April. Every aspect of the operation was marked by the highest degree of professionalism and attention to safety shown by the JAMSTEC team. My/our scientific mission was a smashing success due to the skill of the pilots and the excellent engineering and execution of the submersible and the dives. The pressure hull had been tested to *twice* the depth I dove to, every eventuality plotted out and planned for, every system specifically designed and redesigned over the years to deliver optimum performance and safety. Tiny little details were seen to with great care. Everything was multiply redundant. The location of the sub was known to a few meters in real time at all times. There was active telemetry in both directions, voice communication and images. In the case of an anomaly, the ship has the ability to retrieve the sub unaided. The sub has 5+ days of air, food and water aboard. The statement by Stockton rush that every submersible is an experimental prototype is a lie. Successful programs running 50 years and more back in history have seen multiple iterations of design, each building on the last. Safety is not overrated, it's job one."

Meme - Rob McCallum: "... you are wanting to use a prototype un-classed technology in a very hostile place. As much as I appreciate entrepreneurship and innovation, you are potentially putting an entire industry at risk."
Stockton Rush: "I know that our engineering focused, innovative approach (as opposed to an existing standards compliance focused design process) flies in the face of the submersible orthodoxy, but that is the nature of innovation... I have grown tired of industry players who try to use a safety argument to stop innovation and new entrants from entering their small existing market. Since Guillermo and I started OceanGate we have heard the baseless cries of "you are going to kill someone" way too often. I take this as a serious personal insult."
Rob McCallum: "I think you are potentially placing yourself and your clients ina dangerous dynamic. Ironically, in your race to Titanic you are mirroring that famous catch cry "she is unsinkable". Having dived the Titanic, and having stood in a Coroners Court as a technical expert, it would be remiss of me not to bring this to your attention"

Titanic soars into top ten on Amazon Prime as viewers are reminded by unfolding submarine tragedy - "The Titanic Wikipedia page also saw a surge in clicks this week, FlixPatrol reports.   This comes after Titanic director James Cameron, who has visited the world's most famous seawreck 30 times, said the tragedy this week has parallels with the Titanic disaster, where the captain repeatedly ignored warnings about an incoming iceberg but carried on at top speed."

The final moments in that doomed submarine - "I'm indignant how tragedy has once again demonstrated that the depths of man's depravity, the pit of man's hatred for his neighbor, runs far deeper than the lost ruins of Titanic. What better place to see this truth amplified than the streets of social media.  MSNBC commentator Elie Mystal used the tragedy as an opportunity to make the discussion about his two favorite topics: race and politics.
'Next time some rich white person wants to take Sam Alito on an expensive trip, please take him to see the Titanic'
He tweeted this, after everyone on the left, including those at his own network, just got done hand-wringing over the fact that Joe Rogan's debate challenge to a doctor notorious for spreading Covid misinformation inspired some lunatic to show up at the doctor's door. The "we must watch our rhetoric because there are crazy folks out there" crowd sure seems selective in their outrage.  But things went well beyond Mystal's standard political race-hustling, plunging into unrestrained giddiness over the prospect of these four men and a teenager dying."

Meme - Autumn @clockygf: "imagine being a billionaire who's gotten everything you've ever wanted your entire life and now you're trapped in here as the lights inevitability flicker out and you're just sitting there in complete and total darkness as the realization sets in that no one is coming for you"
Ur Ellie @ellienotnora: "do u think that thing has a black box i wana hear their last moments down there so bad"

Meme - Broccoli rob @turnip_tops: "sorry you can't understand the core concept "it's good when bad things happen to bad people""
Matt Mulligan @mullymt: "Why are they bad?"
broccoli rob @turnip_tops: "billionaires are ontologically evil, hope this helps"

Meme - "Kind of loving how much the ocean has decided to just murder the rich"
1984's George Whorewell @Ewdats...: "A sub went missing full of people who paid 160k-200k to take a tour of the titanic wreckage. The ocean is just eating the rich for us these days"

Meme - Jane Eyre Jordan: "Dying in an ocean as deep as your pockets...in a vessel as tiny as the shanty houses you turned your noses up at....ln a darkness as expansive as your ego...going to see the final resting place of the souls whom you disturbed with your curiosity, but they still eagerly welcomed you."

Meme - "Ok so finally something I have some actual expertise on, structural carbon fiber. i have dealt with it doing outside plant and building wide fiber optics cable laying. One thing I learned is to never pierce carbon fiber tubing - you pierce a separate piece of the material and then you bind the piece to the tubing using the same matrix (usually epoxy) as the tubing itself. This creates a chemical bond that doesnt affect the integrity of either piece. Cabon fiber is an incredible material - much stronger by weight than almost anything, being able to be field shaped much more easily than metal, uses chemical processes to bind so requires less energy etc. But one of its interesting qualities is that since it is essentially a buch of fibers in a matrix, it shares structural handling with wood and textiles, rathen crystal latices like metal, cement, or concrete. This means that when building with it, you have to "sew", glue, or chemically bind it, or you will change its integrity. You can indeed use screws and other binders like with wood, but that is not relevant here - we do not make pressure vessels out of pure wood for good reasons. When used in ductile form or in a pressure vessel like the sub, when it is structural, as opposed to as a coating or covering, any modification to the molded form will have exponential impacts on the whole form's ability to perform as intended. A weak spot in a crystal lattice like metal or cement or concrete its vastly more selfhealing, as the loss is distribute fairly evenly across the lattice. This is why metal armor works even after multiple shots, but carbon fiber loses protection much quicker (a reason aramids are the prefered option over carbon fiber for armor). Think about it this way - you make a hole to hang, say, a computer monitor arm in a cement or brick wall. If done correctly, that will not deteriorate the wall at all, and if it does it would take years, and if you excert pressure on either side of the hole, the hole wont expand catasthropically. The building will not fall on you. You would need pressures similar to those needed to being down the structure even if it didnt have the hole. So it is is fairly safe to in a properly built cement wall, to do this. Now, if you pierce a hole on a tshirt or sock or other textile, fairly quickly the fibers will seprate, and if you excert pressure on the side of the holes, the whole shirt will rip way more easily than without that hole. By orders of magnitude of force. A tiny piercing that breaks a few fibers of the textile will lead to vast loss of structural integrity. The mechanical engineering of carbon fiber is well understood, with established practices decades old, and while there have been advancements in materials and technicques, it is an extremely mature trade - people who do this for a living know exactly what to do and not to do and why that is the case. Which bring us to pressure vessels. As James Cameron (gratefully) communicated, pressure vessel engineering - for deep sea exploration specifically, but also in general - it is even more mature.  Pressure differential physics, the most important ones in a pressure vessel such a submarine, are some of the best understood physics in physics.  We understand it mathematically even better than we understand gravity. It is a solid science that is already established and with very little fundamental research to be uncovered, if any. It is also a science for which extremely precise computer simulations exist.  The physics of which are so precise the only type of physical testing being done on pressure vessels today is if new materials are introduced - to understand its behavior to then plug it into a computer - and fully built prototypes as part of testing before production. Everything else is computer based. It is basically one of the few physics that are so deeply and completely and pratically simulated. With the correct material data inputs, you can very accurately and precisely simulate a pressure vessel's abilit to whithstand pressure differentials. In other words, the depths to which you can take any pressure vessel are very much accurately predicted via computer simulations, and until this last incident, the field had a zero implosion losses above predicted total crush depth. All submarine loses via implosion (ie pressure vessel failing) have been of submarines that sank beyond rated crush depth. And mind you this includes those made before the computer simulation era - because the math was already understood, done by hand, and the vessels over-engineered just in case. So that brings us to this picture.  For what we know of how this sub was constructed, it was made of carbon fiber as the main pressure bearing material. This is a relatively new field for carbon fiber, and the material sciences for its preformance as a pressure vessel are less understood than for other materials. We know it works to a degree - it has been used sucessfully by this and other companies.  One thing we do understand is that principle I spoke about around the structural integrity of carbon fiber being exponentially weakened by piercing or weak spots as compared to other materials. In traditional submarines, even with traditional materials, the pressure vessel or pressure hull is not used or modified in any way.  For example they have a spherical or cylindrical shape with hemispherical ends, so if you need a more hydrodynamic shape, you build an outer hull over the pressure vessel - as is done in military submarines. Even the conning towers are physically separate from the pressure vessel and are either seprate pressure vessels themselves or flooded to the hatch. Everyone who builds submarines knows this. So this picture shows a disregard of the unique qualities of the carbon fiber material plus disregarding well understood pressure vessel physics, and that leading to them thinking bolting a monitor arm was a good idea. In a metal pressure vessel, unless it went deeper than a certain limit, at worse it would have crushed the bolts and then when surfacing the arm would fall, as the bolts would now be smaller than the holes. In a carbon fiber pressure vessel, this would have weakened the entire vessel, and is a very good candidate for where the failure point lies. Safety is not some bureaucratic encumberment - it is hard cold science. But this also shows how intuitive expertise in a field doesn't translate into another We need to respect the authority of the baker when it comes to baking. One of the terrible idiocies of the "disruptive" religion in the corporate ideology is thinking smarts translate directly - or that what works in one case works in everything. The logic here clearly was that since bolting monitor arms works in my office wall, it can work in the submarines wall.  So what killed this sub was not just hubris, but Dunning Kruger."
"NEW: photo reveals the monitor in the doomed Titanic sub was *screwed into* the carbon fiber hull..."
I saw someone claiming that it was good they didn't have hardwired controls because that would require drilling in the hull, which would weaken it. So much for the monitor

A former OceanGate advisor said everyone was drinking the Kool-Aid even though 'there were multiple points of failure' with their sub - "An expert in deep sea expeditions said when he visited the workshop of OceanGate Expeditions, everyone seemed to be on board with the operations — despite what he saw as clear problems.  "Everyone was drinking Kool-Aid and saying how cool they were with a Sony PlayStation," Rob McCallum, a co-founder of EYOS Expeditions, told the New Yorker's Ben Taub, referring to the use of a video game controller in the company's submersibles — one of which eventually became the ill-fated Titan submersible.  McCallum is also an expedition consultant who had given OceanGate CEO Stockton Rush advice on marketing and logistics before visiting the workshop, located outside Seattle.  McCallum said he was disturbed by the visit, during which he examined the submersible known as Cyclops I. OceanGate's next iteration was still in planning: Cyclops II, eventually renamed the Titan.  "And I said at the time, 'Does Sony know that it's been used for this application? Because, you know, this is not what it was designed for.' And now you have the hand controller talking to a Wi-Fi unit, which is talking to a black box, which is talking to the sub's thrusters," McCallum said. "There were multiple points of failure."  McCallum said he was also concerned when Rush told him the system ran on Bluetooth, telling the New Yorker "every sub in the world has hardwired controls for a reason — that if the signal drops out, you're not fucked."... McCallum would go one to express his many concerns with OceanGate's operations to Rush, who largely rebuffed him. He told The New Yorker he finally cut ties with OceanGate when he learned Rush was not going to have his vessel classed by a marine-certification agency. McCallum was among the dozens of industry experts who sent a letter to OceanGate expressing concerns about their planned Titanic voyages.  While some OceanGate employees can be seen in promotional videos touting the safety of the company's operations, others who worked at or closely with OceanGate also expressed safety concerns.  David Lochridge, former director of marine operations for OceanGate, has said he was fired after expressing safety concerns about the Titan. And the company's former finance director told The New Yorker she quit shortly after Rush asked her to become the Titan's chief pilot despite not having any experience manning submersibles."

The Titan Submersible Implosion Was “an Accident Waiting to Happen” | The New Yorker - "Until June 18th, a manned deep-ocean submersible had never imploded... As they mourned Nargeolet and the other passengers, they decided to reveal OceanGate’s history of knowingly shoddy design and construction. “You can’t cut corners in the deep,” McCallum had told Rush. “It’s not about being a disruptor. It’s about the laws of physics.”... “Everyone was drinking Kool-Aid and saying how cool they were with a Sony PlayStation,” he told me. “And I said at the time, ‘Does Sony know that it’s been used for this application? Because, you know, this is not what it was designed for.’ And now you have the hand controller talking to a Wi-Fi unit, which is talking to a black box, which is talking to the sub’s thrusters. There were multiple points of failure.” The system ran on Bluetooth, according to Rush. But, McCallum continued, “every sub in the world has hardwired controls for a reason—that if the signal drops out, you’re not fucked.”... during the harbor trial, the Cyclops got stuck in shallow water. “It was hilarious, because there were four very experienced operators in the sub, stuck at twenty or twenty-five feet, and we had to sit there for a few hours while they worked it out,” McCallum recalled. He liked and trusted Lochridge. But, of the sub, he said, “This thing is a mutt.” Rush eventually decided that he would not attempt to have the Titanic-bound vehicle classed by a marine-certification agency such as DNV. He had no interest in welcoming into the project an external evaluator who would, as he saw it, “need to first be educated before being qualified to ‘validate’ any innovations.” That marked the end of McCallum’s desire to be associated with the project... "‘Look, I am involved with other projects that are building classed subs’—of course, I was talking about the Limiting Factor—‘and I can tell you that the class society has been nothing but supportive. They are actually part of our innovation process. We’re using the brainpower of their engineers to feed into our design. “Stockton didn’t like that,” McCallum continued. “He didn’t like to be told that he was on the fringe.” As word got out that Rush planned to take tourists to the Titanic, McCallum recalled, “people would ring me, and say, ‘We’ve always wanted to go to Titanic. What do you think?’ And I would tell them, ‘Never get in an unclassed sub. I wouldn’t do it, and you shouldn’t, either.’ ”... Whatever his differences with Rush, McCallum wanted the venture to succeed; the submersible industry is small, and a single disaster could destroy it. But the only way forward without a catastrophic operational failure—which he had been told was “certain,” he wrote—was for OceanGate to redesign the submersible in coördination with a classification society... “Do you think the sub could be made safe to dive, or is it a complete lemon?” McCallum replied. “You will get a lot of support from people in the industry . . . . everyone is watching and waiting and quietly shitting their pants.” “It’s a lemon.”... Lochridge studied each major component, and found several critical aspects to be defective or unproven. He drafted a detailed report, which has not previously been made public, and attached photographs of the elements of greatest concern. Glue was coming away from the seams of ballast bags, and mounting bolts threatened to rupture them; both sealing faces had errant plunge holes and O-ring grooves that deviated from standard design parameters. The exostructure and electrical pods used different metals, which could result in galvanic corrosion when exposed to seawater. The thruster cables posed “snagging hazards”; the iridium satellite beacon, to transmit the submersible’s position after surfacing, was attached with zip ties. The flooring was highly flammable; the interior vinyl wrapping emitted “highly toxic gasses upon ignition.” To assess the carbon-fibre hull, Lochridge examined a small cross-section of material. He found that it had “very visible signs of delamination and porosity”—it seemed possible that, after repeated dives, it would come apart. He shone a light at the sample from behind, and photographed beams streaming through splits in the midsection in a disturbing, irregular pattern. The only safe way to dive, Lochridge concluded, was to first carry out a full scan of the hull... For the next two hours, the OceanGate leadership insisted that no hull testing was necessary—an acoustic monitoring system, to detect fraying fibres, would serve in its place. According to the company, the system would alert the pilot to the possibility of catastrophic failure “with enough time to arrest the descent and safely return to surface.” But, in a court filing, Lochridge’s lawyer wrote, “this type of acoustic analysis would only show when a component is about to fail—often milliseconds before an implosion—and would not detect any existing flaws prior to putting pressure onto the hull.” A former senior employee who was present at the meeting told me, “We didn’t even have a baseline. We didn’t know what it would sound like if something went wrong.”... “I would consider myself pretty ballsy when it comes to doing things that are dangerous, but that sub is an accident waiting to happen,” Lochridge wrote to McCallum, two weeks later. “There’s no way on earth you could have paid me to dive the thing.” Of Rush, he added, “I don’t want to be seen as a Tattle tale but I’m so worried he kills himself and others in the quest to boost his ego.”... OceanGate claimed that Cyclops II had “the first pressure vessel of its kind in the world.” But there’s a reason that Triton and other manufacturers don’t use carbon fibre in their hulls. Under compression, “it’s a capricious fucking material, which is the last fucking thing you want to associate with a pressure boundary”... “With titanium, there’s a purpose to a pressure test that goes beyond just seeing whether it will survive,” John Ramsay, the designer of the Limiting Factor, explained. The metal gradually strengthens under repeated exposure to incredible stresses. With carbon fibre, however, pressure testing slowly breaks the hull, fibre by tiny fibre. “If you’re repeatedly nearing the threshold of the material, then there’s just no way of knowing how many cycles it will survive”... Rush asked McCallum to work for him—then threatened him with a lawsuit, in an effort to silence him, when he declined... He spoke of signs of hull breakage as if it were perfectly routine... Fibres do not regenerate between dives. Nevertheless, Rush seemed unconcerned... It’s not clear that Rush could always stop his descent... “If you’re not breaking things, you’re not innovating,” Rush said, at the GeekWire Summit last fall. “If you’re operating within a known environment, as most submersible manufacturers do—they don’t break things. To me, the more stuff you’ve broken, the more innovative you’ve been.” The Titan’s viewport was made of acrylic and seven inches thick. “That’s another thing where I broke the rules”... it seems as though Rush did not understand how acrylic limits are calculated."
Skin in the game doesn't save you from ego

Neutrogena face washing / Deluxe Bathtub / Blaming Pitbull Owners

"my bathroom floor is always wet bc neutrogena taught me to wash my face like this: *splashes face*"
This is the strangest iFunny block so far

*Bathtub being filled by multiple penises on male statues*

Victim: *any living thing*
Pitbull: *The breed of peace* *shoots owner*
Pit bull: "How could my owner do this?"

Links - 29th July 2023 (1 - General Wokeness: Affirmative Action)

American Bar Association Scraps Controversial Diversity Proposal After Blowback - "The American Bar Association on Monday axed a proposal to require law schools to "diversify" their student bodies after more than a year of warnings from law professors that the plan would force schools to violate federal law.  The proposal, first released in May 2021, would have required law schools to submit annual progress reports on minority enrollment to the American Bar Association. Law schools that failed to boost the enrollment of "underrepresented groups" would have been at risk of losing their accreditation. The proposal underwent three rounds of revisions before finally being withdrawn by the association’s house of delegates, which did not rule out revisiting the proposal at a later date. An early draft had warned that U.S. anti-discrimination laws were "not a justification" for "non-compliance" with the diversity standard, a line that drew criticism from many in the legal community, including from elite universities.  Ten Yale Law School professors said in a public comment filed in June 2021 that the proposal "instructs schools to risk violating state or federal law in order to retain certification." As late as February 2022, law professors were raising "legal concerns" about the "use of racial balancing or quotas," according to a memo from the bar association summarizing the feedback it received... The association, which accredits almost every law school in the United States, has made noise about eliminating the LSAT, a test some say disadvantages minority applicants. And in February, it voted to require law schools to educate students "on bias, cross-cultural competency, and racism," over the objections from law professors who said the requirement would threaten academic freedom.  The curricular mandate was nonetheless popular among law school administrators, with 150 deans calling on the American Bar Association to implement it... There has also been little consensus on what sort of diversity the American Bar Association should prioritize. Some comments on the now-scrapped proposal said it gave "priority to racial and ethnic diversity at the expense of LGBTQ+ and disability diversity," according to the February memo, creating a "two-tiered DEI system." Others attacked "the phrase ‘underrepresented groups,’" which "may exclude individuals of groups that have been limited by a history of discrimination.""

Choice and Consequence: Assessing Mismatch at Chicago Exam Schools - "The educational mismatch hypothesis asserts that students are hurt by affirmative action policies placing them in selective schools for which they wouldn’t otherwise qualify. The researchers evaluate mismatch in Chicago’s selective public exam schools, which admit students using neighborhood-based diversity criteria as well as test scores. Regression discontinuity estimates for applicants favored by affirmative action indeed show no gains in reading and negative effects of exam school attendance on math scores and four-year college enrollment. But these results are similar for more- and less-selective schools and for applicants more and less likely to benefit from affirmative action, a pattern inconsistent with mismatch. The authors show that Chicago exam school effects are determined largely by the schools attended when not offered an exam school seat. In particular, apparent mismatch is explained by the fact that exam school admission diverts many applicants from high-performing Noble Network charter schools, where they would have done well. Consistent with these findings, exam schools reduce math scores for applicants applying from high-quality charter schools in another large urban district. Exam school applicants’ previous achievement, race, and other demographic characteristics that are sometimes said to mediate student-school matching play no role in this story."

Opinion: The warning for Democrats in the recent Supreme Court rulings - "the court’s views on the higher education issues at hand are likely more in line with voters than their own. Though their political battle plan to demonize the Supreme Court has until now been largely successful, Democrats are poised to make a major miscalculation if they assume this year’s decisions will push more people against the court and therefore further into Democratic arms... The Biden student loan proposal has found more support in polling than affirmative action generally does, yet it still doesn’t garner a majority. And its support resides much more with young people than older Americans – and the latter vote at a much higher rate."
Clearly, most Americans are bigots and need to shut up - but continue voting for Democrats

The Supreme Court’s affirmative action decision also closes the door on race-based reparations - "The Fourteenth Amendment declares that no state shall “deny to any person . . . the equal protection of the laws.” Early Supreme Court decisions understood that this meant that “the law in the States shall be the same for the black as for the white; that all persons, whether colored or white, shall stand equal before the laws of the States.”... The Supreme Court has consistently held since then that any government policy involving the use of race must be held to the exacting standard known as “strict scrutiny.” Even in Regents of Univ. of California v. Bakke, the first case to allow “affirmative action,” Justice Powell explained that “[r]acial and ethnic distinctions of any sort are inherently suspect,” and that “antipathy toward them was deeply “rooted in our Nation’s constitutional and demographic history.” The Students for Fair Admissions decisions reaffirmed the legal principle that law and government policies must be colorblind. All government programs will now be assessed by what Roberts calls “the Equal Protection Clause’s twin commands: that race may never be used as a ‘negative’ and that it may not operate as a stereotype.” Government payments made based on someone’s race — also known as reparations — fail this same common-sense test."

Myths about affirmative action being discriminatory against Asian Americans - "Blum is not a lawyer but according to the American Civil Liberties Union, he has a "long history of crafting legal attacks on civil rights...   "Asians were standing in as proxies for white students," says Jeff Chang, a writer and activist who has long fought for affirmative action. "That's essentially the strategy that Ed Blum used."  That strategy, before a far right Supreme Court, would finally be a winning one for Blum. But to reach this goal, scholars like Chang say he and his colleagues pitted Asian Americans against Black and Latino communities, using both real issues and false narratives, to end policies that had helped diversify college campuses...   "It's really tapping into fear with zero evidence."...   "This myth of affirmative action being harmful to Asian Americans is creating a deliberate racial wedge between communities of color," she says.  "It's ultimately rooted in anti-Blackness."... Many students of color can feel psychologically unsafe. Majority-white campuses can be isolating and even toxic to underrepresented students — something that the likely drop in Black and Latino students post affirmative action will only make worse...   The model minority myth does something else, Chen says. By bolstering the idea that Asian Americans—like her—don't benefit from race conscious policies or practice, "it insinuates that Asian Americans are not affected by racism in this country."... When David Cao introduced Edward Blum to Asian Americans in Houston almost a decade ago, he quoted Orwell's famous line from Animal Farm, that all animals are equal, but some are more equal.  But Poon says that doesn't describe a world with affirmative action; it better sums up our education system without it.  "To think like somebody like Ed Blum is gonna come along and basically bamboozle young Asian Americans into thinking like these policies are against us when they're actually for us is just heartbreaking," she says."
I like how racial discrimination is civil rights, if you believe in racial equality you are now "far right" and racial equality and meritocracy are anti-Blackness. This is current liberal orthodoxy. And of course the obvious evidence of racial discrimination is dismissed (which is why they can claim with a straight face that Asians are not affected by racism)
If a white student felt psychologically unsafe because the campus wasn't majority white, that would be mocked as "white fragility"
Of course there's the usual canard about how legacy admissions are affirmative action - redefining words is great to push an agenda
Asians who don't buy the liberal party line are stupid and easily confused

Thread by @RichardHanania on Thread Reader App – Thread Reader App - "People know about affirmative action in universities, medicine, etc, but what about in government?  What does it mean when constituencies are more worried about their politicians looking like them than performance?  Here's the story of Eddie Jordan, New Orleans DA, 2003-2007. Jordan was at first a federal prosecutor. He oversaw the prosecution of Louisiana governor Edwin Edwards for corruption.  At the same time, he refused to prosecute politician Cleo Fields, even though the FBI had him on video stuffing $25K from Edwards into his pocket. Why prosecute Edwards and not Fields? We may never know. In 2002, Jordan was elected District Attorney of Orleans Parish.  Two weeks after taking office, his first priority was to fire 43 employees, of which 42 were white and 1 was Hispanic.  He went on to hire 68 people in their place, 92% of them black. Those who were fired included the majority of his investigative staff. The effects were described as "catastrophic." The blacks that replaced them had little or no experience.  Under Jordan, New Orleans would have the highest murder rate in the nation. Jordan was sued, and the fired employees were awarded $3.7 million.  Jordan couldn't pay the verdict, and the city wouldn't bail him out. It got to the point where the fired white employees were going to be able to start seizing the furniture of the DA office to get their money. Jordan therefore resigned in disgrace.  Employees of his office described a lack of office supplies like paper clips, phone lines that didn't work, and a DA who rarely showed up to work.  His only priority was apparently replacing white employees with black ones. Under Jordan, in 2003 and 2004, the conviction rate for murder and attempted murder in New Orleans was 12%, compared to 80% nationwide. Again, this was in a city that was leading the country in murder. Days before his resignation, a New Orleans man robbed a liquor store. As it turned out, he had been "visiting" Jordan's girlfriend at the house that they shared, and then returned there after he was done.  As was usual in New Orleans, charges against the man were never pursued. After resigning in disgrace, Eddie Jordan returned to private practice.  Last time he was in the news, it was for allegedly slipping an envelope with drugs in it to his client while in court.  It's important to note that Jordan maintained support throughout the black community while all this was going on. It's possible he would have been releected if he hadn't resigned after bankrupting his office with the civil rights lawsuit. In July 2007, the community came out in support of Jordan, even after the civil rights lawsuit and years of neglecting to prosecute violent crime. What the NYT described as a "vociferous" black crowd denounced other politicians who tried to hold him accountable. The story of Eddie Jordan is the story of the American inner city.  Racial voting leads to corrupt and incompetent politicians, who only feel pressure to give their constituents jobs.  Those they hire are incompetent, but that doesn't matter. As long as whites aren't in charge. It's particularly tragic because the constituents are of course worse off. Eddie Jordan didn't hire that many people! There aren't enough city jobs to uplift black communities. And the whole city suffers from a high crime rate and government incompetence. But that doesn't matter. Racial voting is psychological, not a matter of group self-interest. It's actually self-destructive.  This is the mistake white racialists make. "They look out for their own, we should do the same."  Yeah, look at how well that's worked out for them."
Cleo Fields is black
Clearly representation is important, so we need government figures who look like their constituents

Nikole Hannah-Jones and the affirmative-action paradox - "There are few better illustrations of the difference between the currently acceptable narrative about race and actual reality than the Nikole Hannah-Jones tenure saga at the University of North Carolina (UNC). The media would have you believe that an award-winning journalist applied for a job for which she was easily qualified, but after she experienced extraordinary racist abuse, she accepted an alternative position at a historically black university instead... before activist media became involved, NHJ was happy to sign UNC’s initial offer – which was apparently a completely standard academic offer letter. It noted that her position would not be ‘inherently tenured’, but also that it would likely produce tenure ‘at the end of the contract’.  Even if the decision not to offer tenure at the hiring stage was specific to Hannah-Jones, this had literally nothing to do with racism. The controversy around her hire relates to her ‘award-winning’ work. Dozens of serious media and academic outlets on the right and the left have savaged the 1619 Project that made Hannah-Jones’ name. Her claim that the American Revolutionary War was fought largely to preserve slavery has been widely debunked. (I have also harshly criticised 1619 on spiked and elsewhere.) Even the Project’s own fact-checker wrote an article for Politico, criticising Hannah-Jones for not listening to her factual advice.   It is worth looking beyond the particulars of the Hannah-Jones saga. Almost no faculty contracts involve a promise of immediate tenure, with the best and most prominent faculty hires generally being brought in on the tenure track. And while journalism schools can sometimes be an exception to this rule, almost no tenure-track faculty are hired without a PhD or other terminal degree, and some history of scholarly publication. NHJ’s highest degree is, according to what is publicly available, an MA from UNC. Despite this, her proposed contract was one of the best job offers in academia I have ever seen: it reportedly included a guaranteed $180,000 per year in salary, a $100,000 ‘start-up package’ and almost $10,000 in moving funds.  Had Hannah-Jones taken up the position, she would have immediately become the highest-paid professor in UNC’s sizable journalism school, supplanting John Sweeney, ‘who has taught at the school since 1981 and makes $151,954’. In exchange for this amount, NHJ was required to teach two classes per semester and ‘produce journalism projects about structural racism’. In fact, the entire focus of the Knight Chair in Journalism was also changed to ‘race and investigative journalism’ to accommodate her. Literally nothing indicates that Hannah-Jones’ race provided any barrier to her proposed hiring. On the contrary, diversity was widely cited as a reason for bringing her on board. The university that sought to employ her has a Diversity/Equity/Inclusion (DEI) office which employs dozens of people and has its own unique website. The deal she went for after rejecting UNC’s pitch wasn’t too shabby, either: her new position at the nation’s top black college comes with a six-figure salary, with Ta-Nehisi Coates as a co-worker, and is funded by nearly $20million in donations.  In other words, the mainstream-media discussion of the Hannah-Jones tenure is an extraordinary reversal of reality. Sadly, this is not unique to her case. A very widespread theme in modern discourse is that ‘mediocre’ white males are held to lower standards than – say – bisexual Hispanic women when it comes to college admissions or corporate hiring. There is, in fact, a recent best-selling book about this ‘phenomenon’ by Ijeoma Oluo, fittingly titled Mediocre. Though there is more than a residual racial bias that endures for entry-level jobs, there is no evidence to support this claim in the corporate world or in academica. It is the exact opposite of the truth. Affirmative action has long been legal, if not mandatory, under US law. Almost every Fortune 1000 company or reputable university employs an entire department of bureaucrats focused on making their institutions more diverse... Was the 1619 Project really the best piece of factual journalistic commentary produced in 2019? I can hardly be alone in asking this question, especially following embarrassing incidents like the National Association of Scholars submitting a formal public letter from 21 experts to the Pulitzer Board, calling for the revocation of the 1619 Project’s prize.   One thing is for certain: the mainstream narrative on race does not recognise the prevalence of affirmative action in US society. In their book Mismatch, Sander and Taylor investigated whether black students thought a black teenager would be more or less likely to be admitted to a typical selective college than a white kid with equal credentials. An astonishing 67 per cent of black respondents said the black applicant would be less likely to be admitted – presumably because of racism – while only five per cent said the white student would be. And, right there, we have the ‘NHJ paradox’. Because of false messaging, people who are empirically and measurably privileged (in the world of academia at least) expect to be victims of racist abuse.   How to stop this trend? One obvious if blunt suggestion comes to mind: we should start actually treating all people exactly equally, and be damned open about it."

Diversity by diktat: An obscure 1977 OMB memo forms the basis for today’s affirmative-action programs - "Ever since the Supreme Court decided the Bakke case in 1978, enhancing the “diversity” of a school’s student body has been the only permissible rationale for affirmative-action preferences in higher education. Justice Lewis Powell, originator of the diversity rationale, had in mind a college admissions office that wanted to admit applicants who would add racial and ethnic diversity to the crop of musicians, athletes, scholars, artists, actors, and other discrete groups colleges recruit to enhance the college experience. Yet the way colleges use race in admissions today does not match the putative diversity objective. First, many elite schools try to match their percentage of minority students from various groups with their respective percentages of the applicant pool or other demographic baseline. This seems a lot more like a soft quota than like a sincere attempt to achieve diversity. Moreover, as David A. Hollinger has pointed out, universities often give little or no consideration to the fact that members of minority groups “may have no interest whatsoever in the culture popularly associated with the group.” An applicant with one Mexican great-grandparent can honestly check the Hispanic box on her college application, but that does not mean that she will bring Hispanic culture with her to the school, or that she is even familiar with that culture. Both of these problems have been debated in detail in past cases. But there is another, bigger, problem with the diversity rationale that has been largely ignored by courts and litigants: In pursuing diversity, colleges universally rely on racial classifications derived from the Office of Management and Budget’s 1977 Statistical Directive No. 15. These classifications were never intended to be proxies for educational diversity, but rather to create uniform classifications to make government data collection needed for civil rights enforcement and other matters more consistent and coherent. OMB cautioned that the “classifications should not be interpreted as being scientific or anthropological in nature,” and warned that they should not be “viewed as determinants of eligibility for participation in any Federal program,” such as affirmative-action programs. Nevertheless, the classifications became the standard used in measuring diversity in higher education. No university has ever explained, in litigation or otherwise, why a diversity of students from these specific statistical categories are appropriate proxies for ethnic diversity. Indeed, the relevant official categories — Asian American, Black, Hispanic, Native American, White — are themselves internally ethnically diverse, indeed radically so. The Asian classification is particularly broad. As Justice Samuel Alito commented in Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin, “it would be ludicrous to suggest that all [students classified as ‘Asian’] have similar backgrounds and similar ideas and experiences to share.” Such a “crude” and “overly simplistic” racial category cannot possibly capture how “individuals of Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Vietnamese, Cambodian, Hmong, Indian and other backgrounds comprising roughly 60% of the world’s population” would contribute to diversity on a college campus. Chief Justice Warren Burger similarly noted in United Jewish Organizations v. Carey that the White classification also “consists of a veritable galaxy of national origins, ethnic backgrounds, and religious denominations.” The only time a white applicant counts as enhancing diversity is when he has Spanish-speaking ancestors and therefore qualifies as Hispanic. A Yemeni Muslim, Egyptian Copt, Hungarian Roma, Bosnian refugee, Scandinavian Laplander, Siberian Tatar, or Bobover Hasid might add significant religious, ethnic, and cultural diversity to a campus. For campus affirmative-action purposes, however, admissions offices classify them all as generically white per the Directive 15 rules. Those who qualify for the African American category also are not culturally uniform. A descendant of American slaves who grew up in a working-class, majority-black neighborhood in Milwaukee does not contribute to diversity in the same way as a child of an African diplomat who grew up in toney D.C. suburb, nor as a black-identified applicant with multiracial ancestry who grew up in a small town in Montana. Yet they all fall into the same diversity classification. The American Indian category, meanwhile, includes everyone from a resident of the Hopi reservation with an unbroken line of Hopi ancestry to an individual who checks that box because his great-great-great grandfather was a Cherokee. Surely, these applicants would make very distinct contributions to a campus’ ethnic diversity. Classifying them both as generic Native Americans obscures those distinctions... An alternative basis for affirmative-action preferences in university admissions is to right historical injustices that have modern reverberations, and to help bring marginalized groups into the American mainstream. The Supreme Court has held that using racial preferences for this purpose is unconstitutional. Nevertheless, there is a way to pursue the remedial goals of many affirmative-action advocates without using race in admissions — universities could limit admissions preferences to African American descendants of American slaves (ADOS) and members of American Indian tribes who live on reservations... Universities could be “color-blind,” while retaining the ability to redress the lingering harms from state-sponsored racism without triggering strict scrutiny that applies to racial classifications under the 14th Amendment."

Affirmative Action Conundrums - "its beneficiaries—no matter how supportive they are of the policy—still do not want to be associated with it. Yes: no matter how much the dialogue has changed, everyone hates the idea of affirmative action. Even Kendi seems to dislike it. The claim that someone has benefited from affirmative action is generally treated more like a scandalous accusation than a neutral statement of fact, even by affirmative action supporters—not what you would expect from a treasured and successful policy. Affirmative action fails ballot measures even in the most liberal states, and people of goodwill can tie themselves into the most absurd intellectual knots as they attempt to discuss it without acknowledging its inherent unpleasantness. At the same time, the ethos of affirmative action has made it past admissions and hiring into our approaches to interpersonal encounters. Robin DiAngelo and the other handsomely remunerated hucksters in the you're-so-problematic anti-racist cottage industry basically train people to be individual loci of affirmative action psychology in everyday life. And studies bear out that white liberals do in fact exhibit this psychology: they use shorter words with black people than with white people and judge them by less exacting standards... Back in 2009, it was a point of general agreement that affirmative action policies were prima facie discriminatory and hence undesirable, and that they needed a compelling justification to overcome this fact. Even a deviation from colorblindness had to pay respect to the colorblind ideal by justifying itself on other grounds. This, of course, is how courts have always treated affirmative action. Three justifications were floated at the time. First was the diversity rationale, a relatively centrist justification enshrined in actual law... Then there was the historical reparations rationale... Finally, there was the role model rationale... None of these rationales informs much of the discussion about affirmative action today outside of court decisions. The idea that affirmative action helps white students by bringing the diverse perspectives of black students into the classroom is seen as tokenism that concedes too much to white interests. Affirmative action is no longer really considered a reasonable vehicle for reparations, either; the right way to achieve reparations—if they're justified at all—is to pass a reparations bill. And I don't hear much talk about the role model rationale anymore. If I had to guess, I'd say the hip view is that it misdiagnoses the problem or even blames black people. Plus, years of affirmative action ought to have ameliorated the role model problem, so continuing to use this rationale would be to accept an increasingly limited role for the policy (or would constitute a tacit acknowledgement that the policy had failed to produce its intended results). So what justifications for affirmative policies have replaced them? Well, none, as far as I can tell... its necessity is substantiated in three new ways. First, affirmative action is straightforwardly anti-racist, since anything that helps black people is anti-racist. Second, affirmative action cannot possibly be racist, since the people against whom it discriminates are not considered powerless in a way that would make discrimination against them objectionable. Third, affirmative action does not really discriminate at all because the whole idea of merit or student ability is itself a racist or otherwise prejudicial notion... How could affirmative action play an important role in an allegedly racist, white supremacist society? Critical race theorists hew to the interest convergence thesis, which holds that policies that help nonwhites are only able to pass when they also help white people. For this reason, some writers, like Kimberlé Crenshaw, one of the originators of the theory of intersectionality, have claimed that the group that benefits from affirmative action the most is white women (in Crenshaw's words, the “principle [sic] beneficiaries”). But at least in college admissions, white women do not benefit the most from affirmative action. They do not benefit more than members of underrepresented minority racial and ethnic groups; they could not possibly based on average grades and test scores and admission rates for the different groups. Compared to white men, white women are admitted to college at rates roughly proportional to their representation in the population; they have only slightly lower SAT scores, and they have higher grades. So it is virtually impossible to read into college admissions statistics an energetic affirmative action program for white women. A Vox article making this claim cites only Crenshaw to substantiate it, and Crenshaw's own article has no footnotes whatsoever—a very rare thing in a law review... The incoherence of anti-racist agitprop extends beyond affirmative action. Progressives and anti-racists advocate an end to colorblindness, not just as a theoretical ideal of liberal neutrality, but as a matter of practical politics and the letter of the law. But it's hard to see how such a development could possibly benefit people of color in a genuinely racist society. When I ask why racist institutions might be so committed to affirmative action, I'm sometimes told that it’s merely a matter of public relations—a kind of cosmetic diversity. But this just pushes the need for an explanation back a step. Why would diversity itself be prized by the public in a racist society?... Of course, some people use “racist” or “white supremacist” to describe a kind of state of affairs or distribution of resources rather than a set of beliefs people might actually hold. If that's what you mean by the terms, there's no mystery; but if that's what you mean, you also won't have recourse to “white backlash” explanations of political events, or to other elaborate stories about the psychology of white people... The best explanation of this conundrum available to anti-racists is that the racism in American society is not due to its elites and their institutions—those people are trying to “do the work.” Rather, American racism is the product of the leftover dregs of historical racism that manifest as implicit biases, and larger pieces of racism that end up as explicitly racist individuals... This theory, however, faces an empirical problem and a political problem. The empirical problem is that the construct of implicit bias is questionable... the theory valorizes wealthy, prestigious, urbane Americans at the expense of ordinary ones... A different kind of theory of this sort holds that powerful people aren't racist, but that they also don't want to trouble themselves much with real problems, or to think about just how racist America is. So they practice affirmative action and similar policies due to a tense combination of genuine conviction and denial. I suppose this is politically better than the above theory, but as psychology it strikes me as even worse. It requires us to think of people as suspended in a constant state of cognitive dissonance around race, motivated primarily by the irrational need to ignore what is obvious."
The liberal justification for affirmative action I see nowadays is that it assumes all groups are equally talented, so disparity in outcomes is proof of discrimination, so AA stops minorities from being discriminated against
To liberals, affirmative action is anything that helps you get in, so it's no wonder they keep claiming whites are the biggest beneficiaries of affirmative action

The Question of Affirmative Action: An Interview with Glenn Loury - "MICHAEL SANDEL: You’ve said that affirmative action is not about equality, it’s about “covering ass.”...
GLENN LOURY: I was drawing the listener’s attention to the difference between the institutional interest in having a diverse profile of participants and the interests, as I understand them, of the population which may be the beneficiary of this largesse. My point was: if you want genuine equality, this is distinct from titular equality. If you want substantive equality, this is distinct from optics equality. If you want equality of respect, of honor, of standing, of dignity, of achievement, of mastery, then you may want to think carefully about implementing systems of selection that prefer a population on a racial basis. Such a system may be inconsistent over the longer term in achieving what I call genuine equality; real equality; substantive equality; equality of standing, dignity, achievement, honor, and respect...
GL: part of the honor being conveyed comes from the distinction of having been identified as one of the persons in society who excel; who are extraordinary in their achievement; who are in the top five or 10 percent or whatever it may be. Brown admits about 1,800 students from over 30,000 applications. I imagine something similar is true at Harvard. The very fact of having been selected is meant to convey that we have vetted you, we have compared you to others, we have found you to be extraordinarily outstanding and we have selected you. So that is honor. That is a certification of merit... Peter Arcidiacono, the economist who was the expert witness for the plaintiffs in the Harvard affirmative action case, is studying students at Duke who elect to pursue science and engineering and mathematics-type curricula. He wants to know how likely it is that a student will elect to leave the technical curriculum and switch over to a softer, less quantitative line of study, as a function of race and their pre-admissions characteristics, their test scores and grades and so on. He finds that more than half of the African American students at Duke who matriculate with an intent to pursue STEM area studies end up switching out before they graduate. I don’t remember the number exactly but something like 10 or 15 percent of white students in the same situation switch out. But he also finds that when he controls for the test scores and grades, there’s no racial disparity in the likelihood of leaving STEM. His data from Duke indicate that the African American students with an interest in STEM but lower quantitative qualification in their pre-admissions profile simply are unable to persist in the study of the technical curriculum. That’s the kind of thing I say is inconsistent with “genuine” equality as I’m defining it. Let me give another example: I’ve been told—sotto voce—by partners at big law firms in New York and Chicago that they are hiring associates of color who they don’t think are really that good. But they know that they’re going to have to make some of them partners because the firm can’t stand the reputational hit of having a class of partners with an inadequate number of people of color. And, without wanting to be quoted by name, they say, “I shudder at the prospect in some cases because I know that the people that we’re dealing with here are really not as good as I would like to see them be in order for me to make this promotion decision. But the logic of affirmative action in a way compels this and now I’m confronted at the firm with an ex post facto situation in which everybody knows that there are these disparities by race and the performance of people within the firm, but nobody is willing to say it because it’s politically incorrect to do so.” That’s the kind of situation that I would hope to avoid. Affirmative action in 1980 is one thing—thinking of that as a year marking the transition from the era of discrimination to an era of aggressive effort to achieve diversity and inclusion. But affirmative action as a permanent, institutionalized practice of racially differentiated standards of selection is problematic...
Sure, the rich kid who has three generations of Harvard alumni in the family and gets selected to be admitted ought to have an asterisk next to their name... But those people are not operating against the headwind of racial stigma. You can’t identify the beneficiary of the legacy preference at a glance... if I want there to be more black physicists or more black literary critics, I’ve got to do something about the background educational dynamic that is producing such huge disparities in the performance of the black population on the criteria used to select students at a place like Harvard...
No African American has ever won the Nobel Prize in economics. Suppose Black Lives Matter were to go to Stockholm and picket the committee that decides who gets the Nobel Prize. The honor that I would like to be able to bask in would become unattainable were there even a hint of political influence... there are some kinds of goods which can’t be redistributed. The very act of intervening in order to effect a redistribution destroys the quality of the good that is being redistributed. And I think human distinction is one of those goods... the motivation for it, while perhaps noble, is nevertheless inconsistent with the dignity of the African American population. We are being treated to a certain degree like children. We’re being excused from the burdens of performing at a very high level... you don’t treat us seriously, you don’t treat us as equals, if you’re not prepared to insist that we perform to the same level as anybody else. In your students’ questions, I have heard two themes. First, it may be that above a certain threshold the differences amongst individuals are not that important. So, you might want to say that people are “qualified” and have that be some kind of categorical and not a continuously differentiated judgment, if they exceed that threshold... Second, what are we rewarding when we say we’re rewarding merit? Are we rewarding effort or are we rewarding ability or are we rewarding privilege?... if the institution is only concerned about performance, then the fact that the high performer is a high performer in part because they’ve benefitted from privilege should not count against them. But I can see a more subtle argument, one I associate with John Roemer’s book Equality of Opportunity, that says let’s classify people based on their background conditions... That tells me something about you, about your resilience, about your determination, about your fortitude, perhaps about your aptitude because I’m comparing you to other people who have similar background conditions... I haven’t really changed the fundamental premise of my selection model, which is that I’m trying to find the people who are going to perform best after admission; I’ve just enriched my prediction model by using your relative performance among peers. (The question remains as to the role of race per se in making such relative assessments.)...
The over-representation of African Americans amongst the incarcerated population is in the realm of dishonor... we fill our jails with drug traffickers serving a market that wouldn’t exist but for middle-class and upper-class people engaged in the consumption of these substances... the huge disparities in the quality of the educational services available by class and by race and by social location are a fundamental issue of fairness. So, in my view, racial justice and equity understood in the largest sense would be 95 percent talking about things like that and five percent talking about who got admitted to the most selective higher education venues. They’re not unimportant, but it’s the tail wagging the dog if that’s the main thing we’re talking about."
Clearly, black students who drop out of STEM are victims of racism, so we need even more anti-racist discrimination, like having easier courses for black students

Affirmative Action in a Multiethnic Nation - "As we are constantly reminded, America is becoming an ever-more diverse nation. Whites will be a minority by mid-century. Some perceive this to be an unalloyed good. But it appears that few proponents of affirmative action are prepared to consider the dangers of quotas in a multiethnic society. A survey of other nations’ experiences with this policy reveals sobering consequences. At best: social strife, inefficiency, endemic public corruption, and nepotism. At worst: tribalized violence and warfare. In Malaysia... The term “Ali Baba” there describes an arrangement wherein “Ali,” the native Malay, acts as a frontman for the actual Chinese/Indian business owner “Baba.” Despite state discrimination, the overseas Chinese and Indians remain far wealthier and better educated than native Malays. India’s reticular caste system poses unique problems. Legions of ethnic groups seek categorization as “backwards classes.” In Maharashtra, the paramilitary Shiv Sena jealously guards ethnic spoils systems. Successful Bengalis in the state of Assam have encountered violence from aggrieved natives. Scions of the upper-castes have self-immolated protesting quotas that limit their opportunities. Many reserved spots for Dalits (“untouchables”) and other backwards classes either go unfilled—especially in high-skill occupations like engineering—or go to the “creamy layer” (i.e., the most advantaged members of putatively marginalized groups). In Brazil, applicants for university and government jobs are boosted by Afro-Brazillian or pardo (brown) status. Inspection boards use detailed guidelines—including fine gradations of skin-tone and measurements of lip size, hair texture, skull shape, and nose width—to ferret out Europeans from those of genuine Indigenous and African descent (given the high rate of intermixing, this is a fraught endeavor). Desperate strivers blacken their skin or otherwise modify their appearance to gain an edge. The Policy of Standardization in Sri Lanka contributed to a bloody civil war between Tamil and Sinhalese... as the share of eligible recipients increases claims that quotas do not materially harm whites (and perhaps “white-adjacents” like East Asians) will become increasingly implausible. When the Nixon Administration first implemented affirmative action programs for blacks and American Indians, whites comprised the vast majority of the US population. At that time, one could reasonably claim the program had minimal impact. This is not true anymore... If the ratio is allowed to become too unbalanced, it will do violence to the Court’s promise that “Under the Constitution there can be no such thing as either a creditor or a debtor race.”... there is little evidence that diversity actually yields educational benefits (and that courts do not require universities to prove that they do)... the “plus-factor vs. quota” distinction has always been farcical. Universities’ student demographics remain remarkably stable year-to-year, suggestive of quotas applied with slight fluctuations. Moreover, universities are not required to offer statistical proof that any applicants possessing Justice Powell’s race-neutral holistic characteristic are provided with a “plus-factor” at any rate approaching that of “underrepresented minorities.” In fact, being a “farm boy from Idaho” might function as a demerit to many admissions departments. Affirmative action’s early proponents promised that the regime would function as a temporary stopgap rather than a permanent dispensation. But today’s supporters don’t deign to offer any such assurances. In their view, affirmative action will remain justifiable until representation in every sector of society is near proportional to share of population. The Manichean view of Ibram X. Kendi, as articulated in his ideological guidebook How to be an Antiracist is instructive... Many have pointed out that this political platform is “openly totalitarian.” Kendi’s proposal for a Department of Antiracism tasked with preclearing all state, local, and federal policies for any hint of racism—defined as any racial disparities—makes this abundantly clear. Kendi’s formulation is necessarily selective (it only considers the historical struggles of certain groups, naturally those whose present struggles are conspicuous) and presumes that past inequities are determinative of outcomes today. Due to accidents of history, culture, and more, never in history have different ethnic groups experienced equal outcomes. And while discrimination does have an impact, and should be rectified where possible, it is often not dispositive. Victims of discrimination frequently outpace perpetrators (e.g., Chinese and bumiputeras in Malaysia). The antiracist Left’s vision would require authoritarian micromanaging of society, lowering of standards, and leveling of outcomes. Meritocracy and excellence would fall by the wayside. The individual ambitions of those who possess the wrong racial traits would be squashed and their opportunities limited. Affirmative Action Now, Affirmative Action Forever. Few ordinary people want to live in a society rife with ethnic tension and mediocrity. California voters, and the American public at large, should reject the antiracists’ racism by subterfuge."

Opinion | Nigeria Is Haunted by Its Civil War - The New York Times - "Postwar leaders found another way of building national unity: the concept of “federal character.” A new Constitution required the composition and conduct of government to “reflect the federal character of Nigeria.” Its purpose was to ensure that no ethnic group would monopolize leadership of the government or be excluded from national economic and political opportunities. Still in place today, it in effect operates as one of the world’s biggest affirmative action schemes. Nigerian law even bans political parties if they adopt names, logos or mottoes with ethnic, geographic or religious connotations, or if their membership does not satisfy constitutional diversity requirements. But these efforts to ensure national unity, however well intentioned, froze Nigeria in time-bound assumptions about what the country should look like. The postwar desire to prevent another secession generated a near obsessive ethnic micromanaging of national life — and created a nation that exists almost simply to share money and jobs. “Federal character” became the most controversial two words in Nigeria’s Constitution. An ethnic quota regulates almost every facet of public life: Admission to the government and the Civil Service, schools and universities, the military and the police is decided by regional origin. Rather than working as a glue for unity, the fixation on ethnic sharing of national opportunities and resources made Nigerians more aware of their ethnic differences. Resentment rose in parts of the country badly served by the quota system. The irony is plain: To prevent the recurrence of a war fought at least partly on ethnic lines — Biafra was populated mainly by the Igbo ethnic group — Nigeria’s rulers solidified ethnic identities. What’s more, instead of ensuring the country’s unity, the postwar settlement generated conflict."
Clearly obsessing over race will bring nations together

Affirmative Action and Its Mythology - "the presence of the term “preferential treatment” had its most pronounced negative impact on support for assisting racial minorities when the context involved race-based preferences in college admissions. Moreover, and perhaps most disturbingly, Sniderman and Piazza (1993 pp. 102-104) find that in a comparison of two groups of similar whites, individuals to whom affirmative action was mentioned showed a significantly higher tendency to affirm negative racial stereotypes about blacks like “most blacks are lazy” than did those to whom affirmative action was not mentioned at all... This paper enumerates seven commonly held but mistaken views one often encounters in the folklore about affirmative action. 1) Affirmative action may involve goals and timelines, but definitely not quotas. 2) Color- blind policies offer an efficient substitute for color-sighted affirmative action. 3) Affirmative action creates opportunities but does not undercut incentives. 4) Passing equal opportunity laws is enough to ensure racial equality. 5) The earlier affirmative action is used in education or career development, the better. 6) Many whites are directly affected by affirmative action policies designed to increase representation of minorities. 7) Affirmative action always helps its intended beneficiaries... A recent controversial paper by Richard Sander (2005) offers the disturbing possibility that, at least in the context of legal education, affirmative action may actually harm its beneficiaries... the median black student starting law school in 1991 earned first-year grades comparable to those of a white student at the 7th or 8th percentile of the overall grade distribution. Roughly 52 percent of black first–year law students fall in the lowest decile of the overall grade distribution; 83 percent fall in the bottom three deciles. Furthermore, Sander presents evidence that lower first-year grades are associated with lower rates of law school completion and lower odds of passing the bar exam. Thus, Sander argues it is theoretically possible (given certain assumptions on the educational production function and on the determinants of the supply of black lawyers) that even though eliminating affirmative action would cause fewer blacks to be enrolled at elite law schools, it could also cause the number of practicing black lawyers to increase. This counter-intuitive result is possible because, without affirmative action, black students would enroll in greater numbers at less selective law schools and be more likely to graduate from law school and to pass the bar exam."

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