Rehema and Brian bungle Brown!

SATURDAY, MAY 18, 2019

Lester bungles Brown too:
We saw the report near the end of last night's 11th Hour.

Brian Williams was killing one segment by re-airing a taped report from NBC Nightly News. Hour earlier, Lester Holt had aired the report for a much larger audience.

The report was filed by Rehema Ellis. It concerned the historic Brown decision, whose 65th anniversary has recently occurred.

It could have been a decent report had it been given more time. Also, had it been prepared by actual people who actually know about public schools and who might actually care.

Instead, the report was filed by the kinds of people who draw their massive salaries for our network "news" behemoths. (You aren't allowed to know how large those salaries are.)

And so it came to pass! After flying past some fascinating elements of American history, Ellis attempted to state a fact—a fact which was offered in support of a Preferred Tribal Claim.

First, she spoke to some high schools kids in Topeka, from whence the Brown decision sprang. After that, she inevitably bungled a fact:
ELLIS (5/17/19): Today, Topeka High School is very different than it was [in 1954]:

CRISTINA DE LA ISLA, TOPEKA HIGH SCHOOL SOPHOMORE: I learn many different things from other types of people, like sexual orientation, race, just—gender, everything.

CONNOR HARRIS, TOPEKA HIGH SCHOOL SENIOR: Together we form a better, like, a better group, rather than separated.

ELLIS: But it's not all better. Recently, segregation for black students has expanded in most of the country. The number of mostly black schools more than tripled between 1988 and 2016.

On-screen:

1988: 5.7%
2016: 18.2%
To watch the report, click here.

Those statistics only appeared on the screen. Taken together with Ellis' statement, they seemed to say that 18.2% of the nation's public schools are now "mostly black."

That claim struck as highly unlikely. Hence, today's report!

For ourselves, we would have liked to hear more from those Topeka high school kids. (Cristina appeared to be Hispanic. Connor was plainly "white.")

But Ellis hurried on to a mandated tribal claim. Public school "segregation" is getting worse—perhaps much worse, she said.

This mandated claim enters the bloodstream through UCLA's "Civil Rights Project," a leading example of the realm which future scholars now sadly describe as Professoriate Down. More on that syndrome in the next few weeks.

On screen, the Civil Rights Project was cited as the source of those improbable statistics, according to which we were told that 18.2% of the nation's public schools are now "mostly black."

That presentation struck us as unlikely, and so we decided to check. When we did, the usual answer came up—Ellis had bungled her one attempt at stating a basic fact.

The numbers she cited do in fact come from UCLA's recent report about the legacy of Brown. We refer to the gloomily titled report, Harming Our Common Future: America’s Segregated Schools 65 Years after Brown.

For the record, Brown outlawed legal (de jure) segregation. American schools aren't "segregated" in that sense today.

(A basic frame of reference: UCLA tends to use the fraught term "segregation" in a way which resembles William Barr's use of the fraught term "spying.")

That said, Preferred Tribal Scripting must sometimes start with a small sleight of hand. And sure enough! When we found the source of Ellis' claim, we found that she had misstated UCLA's data.

For the record, this is what's done on network news by vastly overpaid people who have never spent a day in their lives trying to understand the actual state of our actual public schools. Instead, they tend to work from script—from familiar tribal narratives which run on mandated claims.

As you can see below, Ellis misstated the basic data. Beyond that, no one on network news, or on MSNBC, will ever attempt to report and explain the actual state of affairs.

Here's the passage Ellis bungled. More on this passage below:
UCLA REPORT (page 21): TRENDS IN SEGREGATION

Having seen the tremendous changes that continue to take place among the public school enrollment, we now turn to understanding how those students are sorted among public schools. One way to measure segregation is through the concentration of non-white students in schools. Figure 3 shows the percentage of intensely segregated schools, that is schools that enroll 90-100% non-white students or 90-100% white students. Since the peak of desegregation for black students in 1988, the share of intensely segregated minority schools, that is, schools that enroll 90-100% non-white students, has more than tripled from 5.7% in 1988 to 18.2% in 2016. During the same time period, the share of intensely segregated white schools, that is, schools that enroll 90-100% white students, has declined from 38.9% in 1988 to 16% in 2016...
Plainly, this is the passage Ellis bungled. But this passage doesn't say that 18.2% of the nation's schools are "mostly black." It says something a bit more complex, something which may seem even worse:

That passage—the passage Ellis instantly bungled—says that 18.2% of the nation's public schools have student enrollments which are 90-100% non-white. In the lexicon of the Civil Rights Project, these schools are "intensely segregated."

Many of those schools are not "mostly black"—but all those schools are very heavily "non-white." Stating the obvious, those are quite different states of affairs.

Might we start with an obvious point? It's typical of people like Ellis, Williams and Holt that the one statistical claim they choose to make in a fleeting report of this type will be flatly bungled—will just plain be wrong.

The reason for this is obvious. None of these people have spent ten seconds wondering or learning about the actual racial and ethnic demographics of our actual public schools. Homey simply don't play it that way within orgs like NBC News.

They don't care about piffle like that! Last night's report wasn't put on the air to inform the public about actual facts. It was put on the air for purposes of "virtue signalling" and narrative endorsement—to let viewers know that very good people like Lester and Brian are opposed to "segregation," just like the viewers are.

Lester and Brian are opposed to segregation! They're also devoted to cashing their checks and filling the airwaves with fluff.

Along comes Ellis! She's asked to pretend that she knows, and cares about, whatever it is she's discussing.

Did Ellis know that her statement was false—that it seemed implausible on its face? We have no idea.

Did her claim sound unlikely to Lester or Brian? Readers, please! Lester and Brian don't know squat about any of this!

This brings us to an important question. Assuming that UCLA's data are accurate, why has the reported change occurred? Why is it that 18.2 percent of our public schools are are now so heavily non-white? Why is it up from 5.7 percent? And why should the public care?

Why are so many more schools now so heavily non-white? There are several parts to the answer, but the answer must start with this:
UCLA REPORT (page 4): White students are now a minority across the country’s public school enrollment, and they have been for a while, particularly in the public schools of the nation’s two largest regions, the West and the South. Since 1968 the nation’s enrollment of white students has declined by 11 million students while the enrollment of Latinos has increased by 11 million. There are now nearly three million Asian students and two million students who identify as multiracial...Latino students were 5% of U.S. enrollment in 1970 and 26% by 2016.
Duh. Using the dates Ellis cited, white kids were 68.8% of the student population in 1988. That number had dropped to 48.4% by 2016. (See the graphic on UCLA's page 16.)

According to that same graphic, Latino and Asian-American kids were 14.8% of the student population in 1988. That number had risen to 31.8% in 2016.

In short, there were many more "non-white" kids in American public schools as of 2016! This is one part of a real explanation of the rise in heavily "non-white" schools.

The changes we've cited don't fully explain the large number of schools which are more than 90% non-white. To add more meat to the bones of a partial explanation, consider the recent demographics of the Detroit Public Schools, according to Stanford's Sean Reardon:
Student demographics, Detroit Public Schools
White kids: 3 percent
Black kids: 87 percent
Hispanic kids: 7 percent
Asian-American kids: 1 percent
By the nature of this district's enrollment, it's possible that every school in the system would be "intensely segregated"—would be almost wholly non-white.

There are very few white kids in Detroit's public schools! Down in Laredo, there are even fewer:
Student demographics, Laredo ISD
White kids: 0 percent
Black kids: 0 percent
Hispanic kids: 99 percent
Asian-American kids: 1 percent
None of this district's schools are "mostly black." All are completely "non-white."

The point we're making is simple. Racial imbalance within our schools is often the result of enrollment patterns in our large urban school systems. This is even true in New York City, where only 14% of the students are white and the New York Times is baffled by the amount of "segregation."

Lester didn't tell you any of that last evening. Instead, he sent Ellis out to report on "segregation" in public schools—and the one statistical claim she attempted she got flatly wrong.

That happened for an obvious reason—these massively overpaid people don't care about public schools.

They care about virtue signalling and adherence to narrative. They care about makeup and hair. They care about Q ratings.

They care about their very large checks. They care about sticking to easy story-lines on the extremely rare occasions when they talk about public schools.

Brian aired the segment last night because it made his job easier. It also let him signal his virtue. Brian opposes segregation, just the way you do!

Last night, we heard about NBC's report from several anthropologists. Somewhat surprisingly, they told us how the pseudo-liberal world would react to our own report.

"The pseudo-liberal always loved reports of the type Ellis aired," one despondent future scholar despairingly told us. "They liked the way reports of that type made them feel.

"They won't begin to see the point of what you're trying to say," we were told. "This is what we humans were like the years before Mister Trump's War."

Ellis in the past: We feel sure that Rehema Ellis is a very good person. That said, the last time we saw her report on schools, she authored one of the most egregious groaners ever. To recall what she said, just click here.

As always, she was advancing the corporate message. In those days, the message was this:

Our public school teachers are no damn good with their ratty teachers unions.

NBC was very big on that message back then. This is the way we humans behaved as we tumbled towards Mister Trump's War.

61 comments:

  1. "Why is it that 18.2 percent of our public schools are are now so heavily non-white?"

    What the fuck does it even mean, dear Bob, and why anyone other than race-obsessed liberal zombie would see the world in these terms?

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  2. "It was put on the air for purposes of "virtue signalling" and narrative endorsement—to let viewers know that very good people like Lester and Brian are opposed to "segregation," just like the viewers are."

    If Somerby is going to accuse Lester and Brian of virtue signaling and narrative endorsement, perhaps Somerby should quote what Lester and Brian actually said about this specific report. He doesn't. He just accuses them, without telling us what either of them said that would constitute virtue signaling. That seems pretty unfair.

    Ellis is blamed for confusing non-white with black, which is a mistake but not one that warrants an entire post like this. Just as refusing to call today's de facto segregation "segregation" at all because it isn't the same as what Brown v Bd of Education addressed, strikes me as ridiculous. Times change. Today, segregation is not legally mandated but it still occurs because non-white students and white students are not attending the same schools, based on the figures in that UCLA report.

    Somerby seems to think that academic research is being done to confirm a preconceived agenda. Does he think researchers went out and told people where to live and which schools to attend, so that they could engage in virtue signalling? Or does he think the report is lying, made up figures to fit its agenda? Or does he think no such reports should be written -- probably closer to Somerby's wishes.

    I think Somerby is working too hard to convince us that there is some message or narrative being pushed. He doesn't tell us what Holt and Brian said that exhibited any narrative. He doesn't tell us how that report cooked any books (was it by including non-white along with black kids?). He doesn't tell us why it is wrong of us to worry about segregation between white and non-white kids in public schools, why such worry is virtue signalling and not genuine concern about whether children are learning how to get along in a multi-cultural society.

    If anything, today's narrative about teachers is that they are underpaid and dedicated to helping kids, and they deserve public support. Is that virtue signalling too?

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    1. 12:54 PM, who is in charge of letting everyone know what bloggers should be posting about and at what length, is on the job:

      Ellis is blamed for confusing non-white with black, which is a mistake but not one that warrants an entire post like this.

      Given that less than 13% of the population is black -a percentage you'd think most people who comment about racial issues in America would know- and that 15% of current public school students are estimated to be black, down from 17% in 2000 -percentages you'd hope someone commenting on public school segregation would know LINK- wouldn't you expect anyone taking the time to prepare a report to find it unlikely that over 18% of public schools today would be mostly black?

      That would require a lot of schools with black enrollment falling between 50% and 60% of the total. And would schools with 40% of non-black students enrolled fairly be described as examples of schools where blacks are being segregated?

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    2. Rehema Ellis is herself African American. She is also the NBC News Education Correspondent. I'm am absolutely certain she knows what % of the nation is African American. Somerby is manufacturing a confusion here that doesn't exist in anyone's mind but his, and yours apparently.

      You want to point out that if 18% of schools are segregated, they are not all going to have predominantly African American student bodies. Okay, what does that change about the topic of whether segregation is good for kids, whether it is increasing, and what should be done about it?

      Ellis referred to black kids because of the anniversary of Brown v Bd of Education, which focused on black kids but affected all children. If it were the anniversary of the Serrano decision would you be confused about whether she was referring only to Hispanic kids or to other non-white kids too?

      The question you never seem to ask, CMike, is why Somerby focuses on nitpicks like this to call out women like Rehema Ellis, instead of asking why no one is asking the male presidential candidates about their position on abortion rights, a REAL journalistic bungle with consequences for women and the men who want to have relationships with actual women.

      While you have elaborated on Somerby's nitpick, you haven't explained why it warrants a whole post today, above and beyond any of the other important topics he might have written about (if he had a clue and weren't busy dog whistling to Republicans in a supposedly liberal blog).

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    3. While you have elaborated on Somerby's nitpick, you haven't explained why it warrants a whole post today, above and beyond any of the other important topics he might have written about (if he had a clue and weren't busy dog whistling to Republicans in a supposedly liberal blog).

      Somerby is a blogger, he does not purport to be a cyber paper of record or a headline news show. Like other bloggers he writes about what interests him.

      As for the Brown decision, the Court explicitly stated what was wrong, constitutionally, about segregation as public policy:

      [QUOTE]
      In these days, it is doubtful that any child may reasonably be expected to succeed in life if he is denied the opportunity of an education. Such an opportunity, where the state has undertaken to provide it, is a right which must be made available to all on equal terms.

      We come then to the question presented: Does segregation of children in public schools solely on the basis of race, even though the physical facilities and other "tangible" factors may be equal, deprive the children of the minority group of equal educational opportunities? We believe that it does.

      In Sweatt v. Painter, supra, in finding that a segregated law school for Negroes could not provide them equal educational opportunities, this Court relied in large part on "those qualities which are incapable of objective measurement but which make for greatness in a law school."

      In McLaurin v. Oklahoma State Regents, supra, the Court, in requiring that a Negro admitted to a white graduate school be treated like all other students, again resorted to intangible considerations: ". . . his ability to study, to engage in discussions and exchange views with other students, and, in general, to learn his profession."

      Such considerations apply with added force to children in grade and high schools. To separate them from others of similar age and qualifications solely because of their race generates a feeling of inferiority as to their status in the community that may affect their hearts and minds in a way unlikely ever to be undone.

      The effect of this separation on their educational opportunities was well stated by a finding in the Kansas case by a court which nevertheless felt compelled to rule against the Negro plaintiffs:

      "Segregation of white and colored children in public schools has a detrimental effect upon the colored children. The impact is greater when it has the sanction of the law; for the policy of separating the races is usually interpreted as denoting the inferiority of the negro group.

      "A sense of inferiority affects the motivation of a child to learn. Segregation with the sanction of law, therefore, has a tendency to [retard] the educational and mental development of negro children and to deprive them of some of the benefits they would receive in a racial[ly] integrated school system."

      Whatever may have been the extent of psychological knowledge at the time of Plessy v. Ferguson, this finding is amply supported by modern authority. Any language in Plessy v. Ferguson contrary to this finding is rejected.

      We conclude that in the field of public education the doctrine of "separate but equal" has no place. Separate educational facilities are inherently unequal. Therefore, we hold that the plaintiffs and others similarly situated for whom the actions have been brought are, by reason of the segregation complained of, deprived of the equal protection of the laws guaranteed by the Fourteenth Amendment.

      [END QUOTE]

      continued...

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    4. ...continued

      As to whether both black and white grade school students would benefit academically from an integrated school experience or whether members of one group would benefit and the other not or it makes little difference in the results for either group when there is no de jure segregation is not considered by Brown and remains an unsettled question as far as I know. My speculation is that society benefits from its citizens having gone to integrated schools but not, necessarily, because they end up being more accomplished academically.

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    5. Go read the UCLA study -- there is a link to it. It says that children benefit academically from being in integrated schools. You don't have to speculate when there is data addressing the question.

      Somehow Somerby missed this. A classic example of missing the forest for the trees.

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    6. 8:04 PM, "why don't you go read the UCLA study -- there is a link to it. It says," in the summary on page 34:

      We have compelling evidence from desegregated schools that white students are not harmed in terms of measured achievement outcomes and gain considerably in terms of their readiness to live and work across racial lines in the setting of the future.

      Academically speaking, we have examples in other countries of students thriving in racially homogeneous settings. I'm not going to spend any more time with the UCLA study, but I wonder how carefully it differentiates between observed academic improvement due to racial integration and that which is due to integrating those from less academically advantageous socio-economic backgrounds with those from more advantageous backgrounds. There are, of course, additional factors beyond household income in determining how advantageous to academic success the socio-economic background of an individual or a group is.

      Some of these factors remain difficult to properly assess or are left altogether un-assessed even after including several data sets in addition to household income and parental education level.

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    7. See Einsam below @2:10

      When you pull quotes, you should pull ALL relevant quotes, not pick the ones that support your contention.

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    8. 10:17 PM,

      While we are on the subject, maybe instead of trying to leave a misimpression about "children [benefiting] academically from being in integrated schools" after telling the reader to "go read the UCLA study," 8:04 PM should have been the one to "pull ALL relevant quotes" and have included all necessary qualifiers when making the quoted assertion.

      By the way, the UCLA study isn't the only one I've seen which analyzes these matters, that's why I made the comment I left at 6:58 PM.

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    9. "When you pull quotes, you should pull ALL relevant quotes"

      You ought not encourage more cutting and pasting from this guy.

      Delete
  3. What is Somerby doing talking about virtue signalling when that is a term the right invented to mock liberals? What kind of liberal uses that term at all? Somerby isn't even trying to pretend to be liberal any more. Next he'll be calling us Social Justice Warriors and chanting Build the Wall.

    Today's narrative from the right is that the left doesn't actually care about black kids. It just exhibits concern about fake issues such as "segregation" in order to feel righteous, so conservatives can be called names like "racist" and condemned. Lefties only care about non-white kids because of narratives they hear from Lester and Brian, designed to make themselves feel good, because liberals don't actually think, they just feel.

    My new theory is that Somerby left the building a few years back and sold his website to Sinclair, who is maintaining in order to sow confusion on the left. Meanwhile Somerby sits on his porch and throws empty beer cans at the neighbors' kids.

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    Replies
    1. At the very least, Somerby should be posting trigger warnings for the 1:03 PM types around here.

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    2. If you want to know whether a blogger is liberal or conservative, read the blog comments. If the comments are dominated by conservatives, there's your answer.

      So, who is here these days? CMike, Leroy, David, Mao, AC/MA, Cecelia, deadrat. A bunch of trolls and Republicans.

      mm and I and a few other anonymous commenters have been trying to keep the blog on track but it increasingly isn't worth the time. A lot of others are gone who used to write interesting comments. I know they are around because I see their names at other blogs. I will probably join them soon.

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    3. 8:10, I don’t even think you know what the terms liberal and conservative even means in this day and age. Me, I’m behind the idea of anarcho-syndicalism, best expressed by Chomsky. A very difficult proposition, given the “liberal” and “conservative” narratives, which have as their base capitalism, and which they use to own the media and propagate narratives which we are all supposed to accept, is the dominant narrative.

      As well, Chomsky has named the Republican Party as the most dangerous organization currently existing on the planet. If you seriously believe I align myself with them, then you must do your best to go fuck yourself.

      On, with what I read in this post:

      “That passage—the passage Ellis instantly bungled—says that 18.2% of the nation's public schools have student enrollments which are 90-100% non-white. In the lexicon of the Civil Rights Project, these schools are "intensely segregated."”

      Riight. Is it possible that they’re more segregated, in terms of demographics, because there are now more brown people than ever?

      That’s may be why these new anti-abortion laws, meant to be challenged and eventually head to the Supreme Court, are being pushed. The idea of a non-white majority in the U.S. is simply unfathomable to a very powerful segment of the ruling class.

      I think it would be poetic justice if the brown people who used to occupy this land were to finally take it back. I’m all for it, in fact. Cmike once asked me what my stance was on open borders, and it was a new concept to me at the time – even though my meandering answer was in the affirmative.

      8:10, does that sound like a conservative to you?

      Breathlessly awaiting your reply, you anon sos.

      Leroy

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  4. Increasingly, people with conservative views in Blue states are moving to Red states where they can feel more at home, such as Idaho and Wyoming. Some have moved to Texas, but that state is in the process of turning Blue, so it may not be a haven for conservative gun-owning bigots much longer.

    This strikes me as an extreme version of the flight from urban centers to suburbs that occurred after segregation was eliminated. In large cities with big minority populations, parents send their kids to private schools to avoid the largely minority public schools. That is self-segregation and it results in separation as surely as legal segregation did.

    Why does Somerby think it matters whether the segregation is legal or social in origin? Does he think little kids will recognize the distinction? So what is his point then?

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  5. Has Somerby never heard of gerrymandering? If there are only a few white kids in Detroit, draw the school district boundaries to include white kids in adjacent areas. It is certainly not true that the population outside Detroit is mostly black.

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  6. Somehow Elizabeth Warren has made herself queen of the virtue signaling. She is first and seems to have the strongest statements on issues of concern to liberals. She has been strongly calling for impeachment and she made a very strong statement about abortion rights, condemning the harsh new laws being passed. She is daily exhibiting the strength of commitment to liberal values that Democrats have been craving. And she is wonkish too. I like Kamala Harris a lot, but I have to say that Warren is earning my vote.

    Where is the virtue signaling by the male candidates on the abortion issue? How did they let things get so bad for women in GA, AL and MO? Was it complacency or do they just not give a damn about women? They have some reassuring to do and so far they are failing big time. Women notice these things and women vote.

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  7. ‘Public school "segregation" is getting worse—perhaps much worse, she said.

    This mandated claim enters the bloodstream through UCLA's "Civil Rights Project," a leading example of the realm which future scholars now sadly describe as Professoriate Down.’

    Even the motives of the UCLA study are called into question by Somerby. Why would the researchers at UCLA be concerned about segregation in today’s schools?

    Here is why, from the report:

    “It has been apparent for generations that schools with racial segregation and schools with concentrated poverty both produce less academic success for students, and most of the schools that rank high on either measure have both.”

    The study clearly refers to segregation by ethnicity AND poverty. And Somerby does nothing to analyze or debunk the claim that he says is “mandated.” The study clearly explains itself in this regard.

    Somerby is so busy engaged in his own form of virtue signaling that he ignores what should be an important aspect of the problem, academic success.

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    1. What is the harm in attempting to desegregate?

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    2. @5:19 In most segregated schools, there's no way to desegregate because of patterns of where people live. Also, it's not clear that adding a few white children to a school would actually make that school better.

      Attempting to desegregate distracts from things that could actually help. Also, it gives more power and attention to the ignoramuses who think desegregation is possible.

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    3. After 50 years, the white supremacists have now made desegregation impossible. How convenient for the white supremacists.

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  8. Not only are these reporters ignorant about the reality of schools, they are ignorant about about the proper use of statistics.

    BTW Hispanics are presumably counted as non-White, yet many are white.

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    1. I don't believe they are ignorant about the reality of schools. Somerby has not established that and there is no reason to assume it.

      You have a lot of nerve criticizing someone else's stats knowledge after the boner you posted a few days ago, pretending that an informal study with a majorly biased sample permitted you to conclude anything, just so you could justify your favored claim. It is exactly what Somerby rails against. But it disqualifies you from commenting on other people's statistics. You didn't even have the grace to apologize.

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    2. David, you ignorant slut, Hispanic refers to anyone of Spanish heritage. Many people from the Caribbean and some Latin American countries are descended from African slaves brought to those areas. They are black. Indigenous people from Mexico and Central America are brown skinned. Most people from those areas have some indigenous genetic mixing. Only someone directly descended from Spain will be white, and then only if their ancestors avoided Moorish and Northern African intermixing. Most Hispanics are genuine "people of color" and not "non-White," a term I find vaguely offensive because it implies that there are white people and everyone else, as if white people were primary.

      Hispanics are counted different ways depending on the purposes of a study. Sometimes they are determined by language and not race or "color."

      There are large numbers of people of German origin born in Mexico, as well as large numbers of Americans, including those seeking business opportunities near the border, retiree expats and Mormons seeking religious freedom. So, yes, there are some "white" Hispanics. White people have immigrated to most of the Latin American countries since the French and Spanish. Quite a few California celebrities have homes in Cabo. I'm sure you want to make sure they get counted properly and are not lumped in with all the colored people.

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    3. @3:18 I never claimed that Joe Simitian's study was a formal poll. Sorry that you misunderstood my comment.

      @3:32 Glad to see that you agree with me that there are some white Hispanics. These categories are ambiguous and are becoming more so over time.

      Regarding your snarky last sentence, I would prefer that people not be counted by race and ethnicity at all. We're all human beings.

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    4. If you don't count the people in CA who speak Spanish, you won't know whether to print ballots in Spanish or English only, and you won't know whether you need bilingual employees in public service positions in a given neighborhood, and you won't know how to staff immigration offices, and you won't know where to put your Taco Bell franchise, and you won't know what to stock in your grocery store, and a whole bunch of other business-related questions.

      The biggest users of census data are businesses. If you don't count people by race and ethnicity, you won't be able to give realtors information to guide you when you buy your next house. You wouldn't want to move into a neighborhood without knowing how segregated it is, would you David? We may all be human beings, David, but that doesn't mean we are all alike or make the same choices and live the same lifestyles. Serving people properly and well means taking their important differences and preferences and needs into account, which is something both public offices and private businesses need to do.

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    5. @5:44 Yes, I'd like to know what the people in a neighborhood are like before buying a house there, BUT their ethnicity is NOT what I'd like to know about them. I detest the official use of official ethnic groups, because it promotes the falsehood that someone's ethnicity is their most important characteristic. I agree with Chief Justice Roberts, “The way to stop discrimination on the basis of race is to stop discriminating on the basis of race.”

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    6. "I agree with Chief Justice Roberts, “The way to stop discrimination on the basis of race is to stop discriminating on the basis of race.”

      Who then tossed out parts of the Voting Rights Act, which protect minority voters. Well, at least David was fooled.

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    7. The way to stop crime is for criminals to stop committing crimes. We have asked them to stop so we don't need to have police or courts or jails.

      Justice Roberts is being silly. You (and I assume other conservatives) are using this fatuous remark as an excuse to ignore what is important to everyone on the planet -- their family customs and traditions, their identity, on the grounds that it would be discrimination to notice such things. Bullshit. It is only discrimination when you treat someone badly or in an unfair manner, denying them their rights as citizens, on the basis of that identity. No one intends to do away with Christmas or Cinco de Mayo (which is not celebrated in Mexico but mainly in the USA), or pizza because these are associated with specific ethnic, racial or religious groups.

      Every time you post one of your conservative memes, like this one, it makes me respect you and Republicans less. If you can't reason your way past something like this, you just aren't trying. And that makes me think you want a reason to oppose the statistics that are used to measure whether people are being treated fairly in things like housing, employment, schools and services. If there is no way to measure mistreatment, then there is no way to oppose it either. And it seems to me that is the real conservative goal. To go back to letting bigots treat minorities badly without consequences.

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    8. @1:33 My understanding is that Roberts meant his comment to be a criticism of "affirmative action", but not not a criticism of anti-discrimination laws.

      It's NOT discriminatory to protect people against discrimination based on their ethnicity. It IS discriminatory to give certain groups of people extra stuff based on their ethnicity.

      Delete
    9. It always comes back to the belief Republicans have that others are getting "extra stuff" that they didn't earn or don't deserve.

      If you are going to protect people against discrimination, you have to count them and measure outcomes for both the people you are protecting and the ones you are not protecting. That measurement means counting them and also keeping track of stuff like average incomes, house prices, rents, admissions to college, and so on. Republicans who won't measure this stuff are impeding efforts to fight discrimination.

      I won't argue affirmative action with you -- it is your typical bait and switch argument.

      I do wonder why conservatives were never taught at church that it is wrong to envy others and covet their stuff. It is even one of the 10 commandments. Yet they are excessively worried about whether they are getting their share of the stuff and worrying about whether minorities are getting too much stuff. If I get into college, great. I don't worry that others got into better colleges than I did or whether they got in with lower grades than I had. If I don't get into college, I try to improve my application by remedying the deficit and apply again. Losers file lawsuits claiming that minorities took their space. Losers worry about what others have and how they got it. It is right to protect minorities from the spitefulness of white losers.

      Delete
    10. @2:20 wrote If you are going to protect people against discrimination, you have to count them and measure outcomes for both the people you are protecting and the ones you are not protecting

      That sounds reasonable, but in practice it's difficult or impossible to measure accurately. A common error is to ignore differences in interests and abilities between various groups and attribute all differences in outcome to discrimination. A version of this error is to assume that any given institution should have the same percentage of each ethnic group as exist in the general population.

      Delete
    11. @2:20 You assume that affirmative action benefits minorities. Often it does, but not always. In college admissions, affirmative action hurts Asians and Jews.

      Delete
    12. Where did I say anything about affirmative action benefiting minorities? I said I wouldn't debate affirmative action with you. You always switch topics when you cannot raise a response to something someone says. I was discussing the need to classify people for census purposes and the benefits of census to government services and businesses.

      If you were collecting statistics I suspect it would be hard to demonstrate that affirmative action hurts Asians and Jews since they would be admitted on the basis of their own higher scores and would not require affirmative help in their applications. If they are not rejected, how do you claim they have been damaged?

      One reason why African Ameericans are offered affirmative help is that there are negative stereotypes about their abilities. That results in lower test scores due to "stereotype threat" (see Claude Steele's research on this). Because stereotypes of academic ability of Asians and Jews are positive, not negative, there is no reason to believe their scores were depressed by anxiety over conformance to stereotypes. So the mechanisms hypothesized to disadvantage African Americans do not exist for Asians and Jews.

      When someone raises the kinds of arguments you do about quotas hurting deserving applicants, I always wonder why someone like you is never concerned about the women who are injured by the gender quotas in place at all universities and colleges. They all (except for single-sex schools) institute a policy of admitting roughly equal numbers of males and females. They do this to enhance college life for heterosexual students by providing prospective romantic partners. Because women have been shown to out score men on entrance exams and have higher grades than men, they are disadvantaged by this policy because less qualified men are accepted in place of more qualified women to maintain the equal numbers preferred as a matter of policy. No one questions this, but it is just as unfair as the reasons you claim that affirmative action hurts Asians and Jews.

      The answer to both situations is that affirmative action is not instituted for the fairness reasons that concern you, but for a greater social good that occurs when a college's student body gives all students a greater chance to learn from and interact with students with a wider variety of backgrounds. It is why they only take so many violin-players and may give preference to someone who plays the bassoon. It is why they don't take all of the qualified athletes who apply but will lower standards to accept the student who climbed Mt. Everest over the summer. Affirmative action exists for fairness reasons (to compensate for disadvantages such students have overcome) but also to keep white kids from living in their perfect bubbles and never meeting anyone who might broaden their perspectives. It is why colleges only take a limited number of students from their feeder (immediate neighborhood) high schools. Kids need to see more of the world in order to be truly educated, and meeting different students is part of that education.

      So, your arguments may seem very plausible to you and your Republican friends, but they are not taking into account all of the educational objectives that must be met during admissions and they are wrong-headed about fairness.

      Delete
    13. "So, your arguments may seem very plausible to you and your Republican friends..."

      You are way more generous than I, Corby. I don't believe Republicans see their arguments as plausible at all. It's gas lighting all the way down.

      Delete
  9. Bernie Sanders announces, among other things:

    - a ban on for-profit charter schools and a blanket moratorium on public funding for all new charters
    - support for desegregation programs

    Story is here:
    https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2019/5/18/18630435/bernie-sanders-charter-schools-2020-presidential-candidates-policies

    Does this make Sanders a virtue-signaling liberal?

    ReplyDelete
  10. "Rehema and Brian bungle Brown!"

    It is disrespectful to refer to Rehema Ellis as Rehema because the familiarity is not justified by any personal relationship. She should be referred to as Ellis, as is customary in news reports and academic citations and most business situations. You only use someone's first name with permission.

    If Rehema Ellis is African American, the familiarity is worse because slaves and servants are referred to by their first names in order to emphasize the social distance between them and their employers/masters. That's why wait staff have their first names on their nametags.

    Somerby presumably knows this but he deliberately uses first names to diminish people he doesn't like. He really shouldn't do that because it is petty. If he cannot describe why someone is unworthy of respect, diminishing them this way is just an insult.

    Somerby likes to claim that reporters assigned to education stories have no background in education. Ellis has a personal stake in Brown v Bd of Education because of her race. She is also the "lead education correspondent for NBC News." I will take her expertise over Somerby's any day of the week. I'm also sure she would understand the hair Somerby is trying to split and that was probably misleading to exactly no one reading Ellis's article. That's because the point of the article is segregation and not black vs non-white kids. Segregation exists whether the non-white kids in one city are mostly black while in another city they are mostly Hispanic. And explaining that complexity when it is off-topic, in the middle of a paragraph, is not required for any reader except someone like Somerby, who is clearly playing Gotcha. And playing games instead of considering whether segregation harms kids and what to do about it is demeaning to everyone because it places the needs of kids second to Somerby's concern for technical niceties.

    In other words, Somerby is being an ass, more to Ellis than to Williams. He shouldn't be doing that because it makes him look like some kind of white supremacist nutcase. The kind of guy who would say repeatedly that black kids cannot learn, look at their gaps. Someone at home in the Trump camp, where no one signals virtue because they all think virtue is stupid.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. @5:36P,

      It is disrespectful to refer to Rehema Ellis as Rehema because the familiarity is not justified by any personal relationship.

      Why yes, it is. Let me explain it for you. According to TDH, Rehema Ellis and Brian Williams bungled a story, during which RE quoted an inaccurate and misleading statistic. This is known as journalistic malpractice. It seems that BW was just sleep walking through his job of looking photogenic on air and reading the teleprompter when he re-played the report by RE. But RE is NBC’s “lead education correspondent” and has been since 2010, when (again according to TDH) she started bungling education stories.

      Bunglers don’t deserve respect.

      If Rehema Ellis is African American,….

      If? You don’t know? Seems a tad disrespectful.

      TDH deliberately uses first names to diminish people he doesn't like. … If he cannot describe why someone is unworthy of respect, diminishing them this way is just an insult.

      Didja read the blog entry? TDH thinks BW and RE are guilty of bad reporting. This is generally considered a flaw in a journalist.

      I will take her expertise over Somerby's any day of the week.

      That’s because you’re an ignoramus.

      That's because the point of the article [sic] is segregation and not black vs non-white kids.

      The “article” was about Brown v Board. In that context, getting the racial element right seems crucial. In any case, you shouldn’t be making excuses for broadcasting wrong statistics.

      instead of considering whether segregation harms kids and what to do about it

      If that what floats your boat, what are you doing reading a blog that isn’t about the harms of segregation or the cures for segregation?

      [Makes TDB] look like some kind of white supremacist nutcase.

      Don’t know many white supremacists, do you?

      The kind of guy who would say repeatedly that black kids cannot learn, look at their gaps.

      Do you even read the blog entries? TDH often cites the progress black students have made in test scores.

      Someone at home in the Trump camp, where no one signals virtue because they all think virtue is stupid.

      No, they can’t tell and don’t care about the difference between vice and virtue.

      Delete
    2. @deadrat:
      Somerby does rail against liberals for calling out “segregation” and clearly believes that the idea of “integration” is either wrong or not feasible. In other words, he does take a stand on this, even if you think he is just doing press criticism. Somerby opens himself up to criticism on this, and it is legitimate to disagree with him. This type of back and forth would be normal on a normal blog. It’s called a “conversation.” Somerby makes interesting points, but he deliberately provokes people by attacking liberals and journalists. He does this on purpose, so the responses he gets should be expected. If he were less caustic, he would receive less caustic responses.

      Delete
    3. Not @5:36P,

      I’m going to change my abusive approach to commenters here in my reply to your comment in the hope we can have a conversation or at least a “conversation.” I’ll tell you up front that I think this is a fool’s errand, but that’s as may be.

      Perhaps we can agree that the majority of your comment is both uncontested and irrelevant to the topic at hand. If you think any of the following is off track, please let me know:

      Somerby opens himself up to criticism on this [going beyond his ostensible remit of criticizing the press], and it is legitimate to disagree with him.

      Clearly the first clause is true, if only within this commentariat. The second clause seems without force. Legitimate? If you think TDH is inconsistent between his claimed topic and his actual blogging, what could possibly make a disagreement illegitimate? If TDH allows comments from our Village Idiot David in Cal, our Village Troll Mao Cheng Ji, and spam ads from spell casters and Mumbai moving companies, I fail to see how anything is out of bounds.

      This type of back and forth would be normal on a normal blog. It’s called a “conversation.”

      Are you talking about exchanges between commenters or on the missing exchanges between blogger and commenters? In either case, I don’t know. I don’t read enough blogs to have a sense of what’s normal. My exchanges often go ridiculously beyond the ostensible topic, so what’s blocking your “conversations”?

      Somerby makes interesting points, but he deliberately provokes people by attacking liberals and journalists.

      Yes, isn’t that a possible reason for his blogging?

      He does this on purpose, so the responses he gets should be expected.

      I think we have to grant agency to TDH. How else could he blog, by accident? And yes, I think provokers expect to get outraged responses. I can’t know for sure, since I don’t know Somerby personally, and it’s always been my contention that he doesn’t read his comments. But he’s a stand-up comedian, and it’s my understanding that those folks are used to hostile crowds and hecklers.

      If he were less caustic, he would receive less caustic responses.

      Sounds reasonable. So what? Do you think he cares about the pH of his commentariat? Remember, I don’t think he bothers to read the comments.

      I don’t understand why you made any of these statements. Perhaps you could clear that up for me.

      So that leaves your first two sentences, which both seem germane, and if I may be permitted to paraphrase: “TDH criticizes the use of the word segregation because he either thinks integration is wrong or infeasible, and thus he takes a stand on integration even as he hides behind a stance of press criticism.” Have I got that right?

      But TDH calls the word segregation “fraught,” in other words dangerously misleading. Do you agree? Here’s a little exercise that might help:

      1) Security segregation, in the context of the securities industry, refers to regulatory rules requiring that customer assets held by a financial institution (generally a brokerage firm) be held separate from assets of the brokerage firm itself in a segregated account. (Wikipedia, emphasis theirs)

      2) “In the name of the greatest people that have ever trod this earth, I draw the line in the dust and toss the gauntlet before the feet of tyranny, and I say segregation now, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever.” (George Wallace, 1963 inaugural speech as governor of Alabama)

      con't ->

      Delete
    4. <- con't

      If you use the word segregation in a racial context (in say, a report that mentions Brown v Board), especially when you can’t get your demographic statistics correct, then you conjure up the worst parts of the worst chapter in American history.

      If you want to argue with that, then I’ll listen. But I challenge you to find a single sentence in this blog entry or any other of TDH’s that says or implies that “integration is wrong.”

      On the other hand, I do think TDH is saying that integration of public schools is infeasible in many urban areas because there aren’t enough white students to go around. If you want to argue with that, then I eagerly await your plan to integrate the Laredo Independent School District. And if you can’t come up with one, I promise not to speculate that you think integration is wrong.

      Delete
    5. Ah, deadrat. Slow clap. The silence is deafening, and disappointing. I would have dearly enjoyed seeing a reply from the victim of your reasoning. Who knows, they may even now be trying to parse it.

      Only DinC is dumb enough to keep trying, though I notice you leave that up to mm, which he does very well. Can't blame you.

      Leroy

      Delete
  11. No matter how tiny a proportion white children are, they will remain harassed in the media. So called racism is simply about demonizing whites so they can be replaced without too much fuss.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I agree. Harassing/ demonizing white kids isn't racist.

      Delete
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    ReplyDelete
  13. For what it’s worth, Kevin Drum has a semi-retort to Somerby:

    https://www.motherjones.com/kevin-drum/2019/05/why-are-american-schools-so-segregated/

    Also, for what it’s worth, Kevin’s commenters lead an interesting discussion, some of whom respectfully disagree with him.

    ReplyDelete
  14. This discussion about segregation isn't only about schools. It is about affirming the value of civil rights for all in our society.

    The conservative nominees for judgeships are refusing to affirm that Brown v Board of Education is settled law. That makes segregation a current issue separate from the impact on schools because it is being used to signal support for white supremacist views.

    http://www.msnbc.com/rachel-maddow/watch/trump-judges-send-cultural-wink-with-brown-v-board-of-ed-evasion-59871813903

    It is curious that Somerby has chosen to write several columns, all critical of anti-segregation efforts in large cities. It is perhaps no coincidence that he is making these sorts of media criticisms at this particular time, including attacking a female African American journalist, in the guise of correcting details but also criticizing the entire venture as statistically unachievable.

    Is Somerby aware that he too is signaling support for efforts to tear down civil rights accomplishments? Does he mean to be doing this or is he clueless about the larger context of this discussion?

    Kevin Drum lives snugly in an Orange County suburb that is majority minority (Asian and Persian), in the heart of one of the areas that white flight created. But Drum is willing to own up to the history of demographic shifts in the greater LA area. Somerby keeps pretending that he is a liberal and that he is merely making criticisms of journalism when he once again cites NAEP scores for disadvantaged students, emphasizing the differences between those black and white scores. If he were a bigot on a soapbox, he couldn't do a better job of maligning those who are trying to help black kids.

    Somerby is no liberal. Is he also a bigot? You tell me. Trolls need not respond -- we know what you are going to say.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The conservative nominees for judgeships are refusing to affirm that Brown v Board of Education is settled law.

      Not quite. They’re refusing to say whether they think Brown v Board was correctly decided. This makes it sound like they would be willing to return to separate-but-equal if they had a say. Which they won’t, not in the positions they’re being confirmed to. They also say that Brown v Board is binding precedent that they would be duty bound to uphold and enforce.

      This doesn’t make “segregation a current issue” because it doesn’t have word one to do with public accommodations or public schools. It’s all about Roe v Wade. These clowns have all been advised not to lie under oath but not to signal that they’re willing to undercut Roe at every opportunity. Thus the refusal to give opinions about any Supreme Court decision lest they be asked about abortion rights.

      If you think these judges are itching to rule that intrastate railway accommodations can be resegregated by race or that black students can once again be excluded from Little Rock Central High School, then you have no clue about what’s going on.

      criticizing the entire venture [integration] as statistically unachievable.

      If you think it’s achievable, please present your plan for integrating the Laredo Independent School District. I’ll wait.

      [TDH] once again cites NAEP scores for disadvantaged students, emphasizing the differences between those black and white scores.

      Not in this blog entry, but when he does, is he wrong about those differences?

      Somerby keeps pretending that he is a liberal

      And you keep pretending that you know what’s going on.

      Is he [Somerby] also a bigot?

      I don’t know him, so I can't say for sure. Are you also an idiot?

      Delete
    2. Is he [Somerby] also a bigot?

      I don't know him, so I can't say for sure, but he most definitely carries water for bigots, so...

      Delete
    3. Well, I got the answer to my last question.

      Please give an example of TDH carrying water for bigots. Your tribal fantasies don't count. Go ahead. Give it your best shot.

      Delete
    4. Transparently anti-white post is transparent.

      Delete
  15. Bernie bungled the abortion question on Meet the Press today. When Todd asked him about use of abortion to select the sex of a child, he said that would have to be addressed, backtracking on the right of a woman to make decisions about her own health. This gaffe suggests he hasn't thought through the issue.

    Vox summarizes the positions of the other candidates. Gillibrand and Warren are the only ones with detailed proposals:

    https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2019/5/17/18627693/2020-democrats-alabama-abortion-ban-hyde-amendment

    Only 11 out of 24 candidates have something about abortion rights on their web pages.

    Bernie says he wants judges who will support Roe v Wade, but he hasn't signed onto the idea of a proposed constitutional amendment guaranteeing abortion, transition and contraception healthcare rights. He hasn't called for repeal of the Hyde amendment. He does support funding Planned Parenthood. But there is a lot more that can be done and he isn't doing it. Warren gets it; Bernie doesn't.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Off topic
    An adult film star who previously alleged an extramarital affair with Donald Trump now says in a statement the affair never happened.

    A lawyer for porn actress Stormy Daniels confirmed his client’s statement


    Sexy picture at the link. https://www.jstor.org/stable/24887192?seq=1#page_scan_tab_contents

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You were supposed to take Daniels statements seriously, not literally.

      Delete
  17. ELLIS (5/17/19): Today, Topeka High School is very different than it was [in 1954]:

    Yeah, in 1954 THS likely had many more white students the 40% of enrollment now, and many fewer Hispanic students than the 29% of enrollment now. But the one thing that wasn’t different was that the high school was integrated.

    Brown v Board was actually a consolidation of several cases challenging school segregation laws in several states. Kansas was the only appellee that didn’t mandate segregation. Kansas law allowed communities to require their school boards to maintain segregated schools, and in 1954 in Topeka that applied only to some elementary schools.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Duh. Using the dates Ellis cited, white kids were 68.8% of the student population in 1988. That number had dropped to 48.4% by 2016. (See the graphic on UCLA's page 16.)

    But yeah, replacement migration is just a conspiracy theory. A twenty percent reduction in the majority population's percentage of students in the school system in 20 years is totally normal, and not at all anything to concern yourself over.

    ReplyDelete
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