(Tonight’s guest poster in our week-long expose of the bigotsphere is Armando of DailyKos fame)
Right Wing Racism: Steve Sailer
While Jane and the other distinguished Guest Posters will no doubt do a fine job of exposing some of the more prominent Right Wing figures who traffick in racial hate, some of the most insidious racist and sexist work done on the Right tries to cover itself in pseudo-intellectualism. This type of work sometimes winds its way into the mainstream – e.g. – Lawrence Summers remarks about women in the science and math disciplines.
Rush Was Right, Of Course. But Why?
So Rush Limbaugh has resigned from his ESPN football pregame gig for telling the truth about the media overrating Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb.
This is what Limbaugh said about McNabb:
"I don’t think he’s been that good from the get-go. I think what we’ve had here is a little social concern in the NFL. I think the media has been very desirous that a black quarterback do well. They’re interested in black coaches and black quarterbacks doing well. I think there’s a little hope invested in McNabb, and he got a lot of credit for the performance of this team that he really didn’t deserve. The defense carried this team."
. . . He’s certainly been adequate. But you could easily get the impression from the TV sports wrap-up shows that he’s the second coming of Joe Montana.
That’s because, as with many black quarterbacks, McNabb’s best plays, the ones that are shown over and over again, are so much more spectacular than his average plays. Personally, I’ve long wanted more black quarterbacks in the NFL. Living in Southern California, I don’t have a team to root for. So I just watch the wrap-up shows to see amazing plays. And black quarterbacks provide more of them than whites, because they are generally faster and shiftier runners.
. . . Why do black quarterbacks tend to be better runners than white quarterbacks? For the same reasons that blacks tend to be better runners than whites in all sports. Perhaps the single most self-evident fact about American spectator sports is that blacks, on average, are faster than whites. No human being not of West African descent ever ran 100 meters in less than 10 seconds until this spring, when Patrick Johnson, finally broke that barrier, 35 years after the first Sub-Saharan African. And Johnson is an interesting combination of Australian Aborigine and Irish.
. . . Until about five years ago, black NFL quarterbacks were actually about as common as blacks are in the general population. But this was widely denounced in the press as proof of white racism–because blacks are so much more common in other football positions. For example, when I last checked a few years ago, 59 of the 60 starting cornerbacks were black.
Quarterbacks and cornerbacks, however, require radically different skills. It’s simply wrong to expect equal proportions of each race at both positions. . . .
And so on. Yes, Al Campanis lives . . . It’s about "lacking the necessities." But now in a pointy head’s suit. Sailer’s fixation is on the differences in IQ between the races:
IQ is off-limits today because people who are verbally facile, such as journalists and academics, tend to assume that reality is largely constructed from words. Thus, if we would all just stop writing about unpleasant facts, they would disappear.
Unpleasant Fact # 1: Five out of six African-Americans have IQs below the white average. But not talking about this IQ difference has singularly failed to make it go away. The black-white gap has remained roughly one standard deviation for the last 80 years.
What the censorship has accomplished, however, is preventing the emergence of a more a nuanced and optimistic view of black-white differences. Although IQ is, by far, the single most effective measurement known to the social sciences for predicting human outcomes, it’s hardly omniscient. Indeed, African-Americans tend to be better than whites at certain mental abilities that IQ tests are bad at gauging, such as the improvisatory creativity that makes them world-beaters in jazz, basketball, rap, running with the football, and preaching. . . .
Unpleasant Fact #2: Far more subtle, although the Great and the Good ceaselessly sermonize us that racial conflicts are caused by the majority feeling superior to the minority, a quick global survey suggests the opposite. The doltish masses have frequently risen up against astute "middle-man minorities" that control trade.
. . . Our political discourse is dominated not by a concern for the needs of the American people as a whole, but by the self-interest and unexamined assumptions of the verbally facile.
Sailer as the Great White Father. Riiight. His hat tips to black jazz and black preaching reminds of an old MASH episode where Harry Morgan, playing another crazy General (you think MASH could survive today?) asks a black soldier for a song, exclaiming "it’s in your blood boy!" No, Sailer’s agenda is to excuse our racist past – there is no discrimination or racism, it’s just the genes. Lawrence Summers tried a more genteel version of this song last year.
And the reality is this is right out of the GOP playbook, the one they now try to hide. Sailer himself gives away the game:
With the enthusiastic aid of the liberal media, Democrats are now setting about delegitimizing both a large portion of the GOP base and the last 38 years of GOP history [Sailer writes about the criticisms of Trent Lott`s statements celebrating Strom Thurmond`s overt racist past.]
Indeed, the biggest problem facing the Democrats is an overly target-rich environment. There are lots of Lotts among Republicans. Like a barracuda approaching a school of sardines, the Democrats are having trouble staying locked on a single victim. Should they pursue Attorney General John Ashcroft, Senator George Allen (R-VA), Senator Jeff Sessions (R-AL), Congressman Cass Ballenger (R-NY), Senator Conrad Burns (R-MT), or even male ingénue Bill Frist (R-TN) (who was chosen to replace Lott in part because he’d never run for office until 1994–or even voted until 1988–and thus has had little time to develop a rap sheet of "insensitive" statements)?
. . . Gentlemen, why is it necessary to remind you that the Republican Party cannot win a war of attrition fought on this particular battlefield?. . . The longer-term fallout will be to delegitimize the Southern Strategy that has served the Republicans well for decades. Indeed, the Washington Post just came up with a new name for the Southern Strategy: the GOP’s " racially tainted recent past."
Karl Rove and Ken Mehlman try to sweep that critical component of Republican politics under the rug, and too many Republicans of good faith, Republicans who deplore racism, sweep this dirty fact from their mind. Sailer’s sin is to say openly what we all know – Republicans have appealed to racism for over 40 years as a deliberate political strategy. Sailer, the pointy head racist, says that which we all know – the racist Republican past has led to their electoral successes. But the new Republicans know something Sailer seemingly does not – Republican extremism - on race, on religion, on "values" – threatens Republican chances with the moderate white voter. That is why they are shushing him and shunning him. The last thing the Republican Party wants are revelers in its racist past. But Steve Sailer sheds a light on the heart of Republicans politics – the naked racism which has helped it to power.
(graphic by Dark Black)