MONDAY, JANUARY 31, 2022
Greetings from the pre-rational animal: Was there anything wrong with Biden's pledge—with his pledge to nominate a black woman for the Supreme Court?
Not necessarily, no. Was his pledge an act of perfect societal brilliance? Not necessarily yes.
At that point, along comes Blow, determined to state the tribal script for the ten millionth time. He tends to submit his columns in all caps. Editors lower-case them down.
In his new column today, Blow notes what no one else has been willing or able to remember or say. Fot a long time, especially long ago, only (upper-class) white man needed to apply!
No one else has uncovered, remembered or stated this forgotten fact. Then the logic kicks in:
BLOW (1/31/22): The irony here is that Ronald Reagan, the Republicans’ patron saint before the rise of Trump, made a similar promise in 1980 when he was in trouble with women for not supporting the Equal Rights Amendment. He promised to nominate a woman—again the word “white” was silent—and that’s how we got Justice Sandra Day O’Connor.
[The always ridiculous Ben] Carson wasn’t the only conservative making a fuss about Biden and identity politics. Tucker Carlson also railed against the impending pick, saying, “Biden claims that his race counting is essential so that the court and the rest of his administration, quote, ‘looks like America.’” He continued, “Of all the lies that Joe Biden tells, this could be the easiest to check. We have the latest census numbers, and we can promise you with dead certainty that Joe Biden’s nominees look nothing like America, not even close.” Instead, Carlson said, a Black woman nominee will “represent about 7 percent of the population.”
I say, look at it another way.
Of the 115 justices who have served on the bench since 1789, 108—roughly 94 percent—have been white men. Zero percent have been Black women.
Viewed this way, through the long sweep of American history, the United States has some work to do.
Reagan pledged to nominate a woman? No one else has said that!
The always ridiculous Ben Carson is almost always ridiculous. In this case, Tucker Carlson at least managed to the get numbers pretty much right.
Regarding the alternate way Blow looks at it, we would only say this:
It's true! It's true that, since 1798, zero percent of Supreme Court Justices have been black women.
It's also true that zero percent have been Hispanic men. Also, zero percent have been Asian-Americans, whether women or men. Within that demographic, gender doesn't matter.
The same is true of Native Americans, the subgroup of longest standing. Zero percent of Supreme Court Justices have been Native Americans. There have been no Native American women, no Native American men.
There was nothing "wrong" with what Biden did. It also wasn't necessarily the perfectly right thing to do.
No one is required to think it was the best way to proceed. But within our failing national culture, you can be fairly sure that almost everything you hear about Biden's decision is going to be dumb—selective, illogical, overstated, possibly loud and overwrought.
When it comes to a matter like, there is no type of bean-counting which can solve or nullify the historical problem of proportional representation on a nine-member body. There is no statistical way to square this particular circle.
There is no way to bean-count your way to some perfect resolution of this matter. That said, we can tell you this:
Our blue tribe is, on balance, very, very dumb. Our reasoning skills barely exist. We're cruelly tethered to narrative. We're the spawn of preferred Storyline.
"Man [sic] is the rational animal," Aristotle is widely said to have said. He'd never read the New York Times. He had never watched cable news—not our channels, not theirs. He wasn't able to observe the work of either tribe in this, the era of Trump and anti-Trump.
In fact, we humans are the script-reading animal—the animal tethered to script. We're told this on a nightly basis by disconsolate major experts who report to us from the future. They speak to us through the nocturnal submissions the haters refer to as dreams.
Our team is very, very dumb. You'll very rarely be shocked, surprised, disappointed if that's all you expect.
Other bean-counting procedures: We strongly recommend Jay Caspian Kang's essay on the type of bean-counting which now controls admission to highly "selective" colleges. Headline:
"It’s Time for an Honest Conversation About Affirmative Action"
Kang covers some important points. We think he may have omitted one, which we hope to cite in the future.