11 Liberal rules for racism in America

Discussion in 'Too Hot for Swamp Gas' started by PSGator66, Aug 13, 2013.

  1. Lawdog88
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    Lawdog88 Well-Known Member

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    It strikes me that, in comparing the two sub-sets you mentioned, i.e., African-Americans ("brought here to live in this context") vs. West Africans left behind (who are doing about the same as East Africans, in that context, which we know is at best, a marginal existence), really makes a tacit, but rather sweeping, racial indictment against African-Americans. Did you not see the irony here ?

    Amateur sociologist that you are, I would bet that you did not intend that, either.
  2. GatorRade
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    GatorRade Well-Known Member

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    I'm interested in what you are saying, but I'm afraid that I'm not following the exact nature of your critique. You are saying that I made a racial indictment against African-Americans because I brought up west Africans?
  3. Lawdog88
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    Lawdog88 Well-Known Member

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    You apparently admitted that none of your examples of the Black race are succeeding very well, as caused by - as you claim - the disparate cultures, i.e., West & East African cultures, as against the African-American culture existing in this country.

    If they are not doing qualitatively very well in either of the African culture examples you gave, and clearly as you imply, in this culture (presumably they would have an even greater opportunity for success in this culture, than over there . . . unless you are not admitting that as an underlying premise of your criticism), how then could their lack of success possibly be the fault of the culture . . . if they are not doing well wherever they find themselves ?

    Thus, you make the tangential argument that in fact, the reason they are not doing well - no matter where they are - is because of the race.

    Unless, of course, I misunderstood your examples and comparisons.
  4. GatorRade
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    GatorRade Well-Known Member

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    Ok, I think I see what you are saying now, Law, and I do think that you have the wrong impression of my post. Admittedly, I think I tried to cram a bit too many concepts into the few sentences. So here comes a much longer and more boring version.

    I was hoping to get across that I didn't think that an assault to a peoples in their home land was comparable to the slave trade, where the group was forcibly moved into a new environment. Here, they are without any of their prior physical resources and, even once freed, must deal with the hostilities of the region, most notably racism. This is why my a priori expectation would be slower socioeconomic growth with such a group. These recurring factors are to me fundamentally more damaging than one time destructive measures, such as those associated with a war.

    My reference to the remaining the west Africans was an attempt at a comparison to the holocaust. In both cases, the loss of human resources was tragically immense (numbering in the millions in both cases), but the rate of relative per capita growth in prosperity perhaps should not be expected to be as hampered as with the group descended from slaves.

    In here, I recognize that it may appear that I am peddling a contradiction, as the African-American population is probably over an order of magnitude more prosperous that most current African populations, but I am thinking in relative terms. Living in the US, even coming from a relatively disadvantaged family, clearly has its benefits. But yet the African-American population hasn't caught up the white American population. With the size of both of these populations, I'd sort of assume that the law of large numbers should force the outcome of these two populations to converge, unless there is an exogenous effect. So here I believe that it is likely that there is such an effect. For me, this effect is likely the residual result of slavery, for others on the thread, either government or the African-American individuals themselves are perpetuating a lack of personal responsibility. Hence, the comparison to the east African nations.

    In actuality, the model that I am using to make all of these over-simplified hypotheses doesn't include the individual's DNA one bit. Although I would be surprised to find absolutely no genetic differences in capability between populations, I just think that the effect of these factors are likely negligible in comparison with environmental factors, most notably economic opportunity of the environment, but also parenting, schools, friends, etc. All the good stuff.

    So I hope that clarifies my thoughts a bit better, and doesn't sound even more crass to you.
  5. Lawdog88
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    Lawdog88 Well-Known Member

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    Thank you for the clarification, and I understand your hypothesis.

    I think it would be interesting - if it were possible - to compare individual productivity per capita, with a "muligan" factor built-in for culture and economic model disparity, between the West / East Africans and African-Americans. Just a pipe dream, perhaps, and likely impossible to measure and compare due to the stark differences in how the relative economics (including, but not limited to, availability of resources and services; currency; standard of living; all that, etc.) are arranged, especially since ours are much more "polished" after these years, and quite sophisticated by comparison. In other words, the measurement would be whether the folks in the deprived economic system are actually making more out of less, with less advantage, per capita, than African-Americans are here ? If so, why ?

    If we could make that measurement though, perhaps we could then get down to a meaningful hypothesis about the source of the black man's apparent malaise in this country - or whatever you want to call his under-productivity / under achievement, etc. as compared with the white race, and possibly find out just exactly what the source of it really is. Lack of opportunity and disadvantage caused by poor self-image, cultural stigma and societal bias; those same attributes caused by the welfare state combined with a lack of initiative; some combination of that . . . or something else altogether.

    Although I may not agree with your conclusion, the premises for it were well-stated.
  6. wargunfan
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    wargunfan Well-Known Member

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  7. GatorRade
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    GatorRade Well-Known Member

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    Definitely investigating the underlying causes of prosperity is one of the most interesting questions for me, but as you point out, not something that one can really investigate with any scientific rigor. Interestingly, Adam Smith himself makes a specific reference to Africa's socioeconomic status in book I of The Wealth of Nations. He tells us that, like my model, genetic differences (though these words have yet to be invented) aren't so great as we might imagine, and our talents probably reside because of specialization and economic trade:

    Indeed, he describes long distance transportation (what he calls a “water carriage”) as a key to prosperity, because it increases the effective market size. He then implies that landlocked towns, like many in Africa, become relatively poor compared to busy port towns. Smith seems to imply that this is the reason that Africa remains “barbarous and uncivilized”, as he says.

    Indeed the African-Americans enjoy a great deal more opportunity than the African-Africans, so I certainly agree with him there. But obviously it isn't the whole story, as we still have the black-white gap.

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