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Monday, February 04, 2013

Mailvox: an erroneous summary

Ed responds to my previous post on sexual inequality.  Unfortunately, he tries to leap past the specific issues raised and summarizes them incorrectly:
Your arguments, gentlemen, all boil down to one essential realization: When you open up the gates of universal suffrage, the results become more unpredictable and difficult to manage.
This is totally incorrect.  When the gates of universal suffrage are opened, the results become entirely predictable and deleterious.  This is both logically obvious and empirically demonstrable, since the consequences we are currently experiencing were correctly anticipated by a wide variety of men and women who opposed suffrage.
[H]ere is a point I believe you overlook: We live in the twenty-first century. Women are taxpayers, voters, and fully integrated into our educational, corporate, and political institutions. A significant number of men (myself included) believe that they have the right to equal opportunities in our society. Even if it is possible to prove that women are marginally less (or more, a la Tom Peters) capable than men, an inexorable fact remains: Female participation in our society is firmly established; and barring some cataclysmic counterrevolution, it is here to stay.
Considering that I'm on record as expecting the collapse of the USA in the 2033 timeframe, I don't think I can be reasonably said to have overlooked the point.  I understand that female participation in our society is firmly established; that is precisely why I expect our society to collapse and shatter.  This will not be the first time this has happened, and human nature being what it is, I tend to doubt that it will be the last.

Roissy's observations on this score are reliably astute: "We are the front lines of a grand sociological experiment the fruits of which are just now beginning to ripen. There is no way to know the exact contours it will trace, because nothing of this precise nature on this gargantuan scale has befallen an entire civilization of our size, until now. But if past performance of similar civilizational devolutions is indicative of future returns, there is little cause for optimism. The omens are everywhere."
 One, even if it is possible to demonstrate that a particular group (men, women, whites, blacks, Asians, etc.) is marginally more intelligent/aggressive/etc. as compared to its counterpart(s), such differences are statistically marginal, at best. Within my personal circle of acquaintances, there are plenty of Asians who are poor at math, and at least a dozen African-American engineers. The marginal characteristics of a particular group (if they are provable and demonstrable at all) do not enable you to make accurate predictions about an individual member of that group.

Secondly, we live in a pluralistic society. Fairness demands that we accept the equal rights of all individuals (as opposed to the group rights advocated by the extreme right and the politically correct left); and practicality demands that we (I am speaking for conservatives here) construct a message of small government and individual liberty that is free of religious, ethnic, and gender biases.

In practice, arguments about race and/or and sex-based innate abilities do little more than offend people.
First, the inability to make accurate predictions about an individual member of that group are irrelevant since we're not discussing the hypothetical disenfranchisement of individual voters, but rather the disenfranchisement of an entire class of voters.  And the marginal characteristics of a particular group most certainly allow one to make accurate predictions about their future collective behavior.

Second, fairness is irrelevant.  This is the expected retreat to metaphysics I anticipated and it is not applicable to the practical argument in which we are presently engaged.  Nor does practicality demand a message free of biases, indeed, the entire written history of Man demonstrates precisely the opposite.  Nor could it, given that my argument is a practical and empirical one.

Third, it is no concern of mine if people are offended or not.  The truth often offends people.  It is no surprise to me that women dislike the historical fact that their collective involvement in governance has historically led to the rapid loss of national sovereignty, to economic contraction, and other consequences generally deemed undesirable.  But history is as it is.  The facts are as they are.  Simply wishing things were otherwise is neither realistic nor a rational approach to the issue.

No one who is capable of grasping the concept that permitting children to choose their meals is not always and necessarily in their long-term best interest should have trouble understanding that permitting an increased influence in governance to any particular group is not always and necessarily in the best interest of that group or anyone else.  Nor is it necessary for a society to collapse entirely before the positive or negative effects of a specific group's increased involvement in government to be ascertained.

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86 Comments:

Anonymous DonReynolds February 04, 2013 1:18 PM  

What fairness is there in taking busloads of mentally retarded to the polls with instructions on how to vote, which completely cancels the votes of an equal number of normal/rational people? Do we let them vote because we give a flying f*ck what they think? Are we pretending to care? Not in the least. Democrats (and Republicans too) are insincere in their fake concerns about the voting rights of idiots. They are both feral and grasping when it comes to raw political power. Neither are interested in what is BEST for the nation. Come to your own conclusions.

What is BEST for the nation and its citizens has nothing to do with giving undue influence in political decisions to the bottom of the social pyramid.

Anonymous Josh February 04, 2013 1:23 PM  

No one who is capable of grasping the concept that permitting children to choose their meals is not always and necessarily in their long-term best interest should have trouble understanding that permitting an increased influence in governance to any particular group is not always and necessarily in the best interest of that group or anyone else.

Funny the cognitive dissonance in the leftist who calls for banning big gulps and cigarettes but calls for increasing the franchise.

Anonymous Gimble February 04, 2013 1:25 PM  

The problem is not "universal suffrage" - the problem is unlimited state power, and how universal suffrage has a 100% chance of creating a totalitarian society.

"construct a message of small government and individual liberty that is free of religious, ethnic, and gender biases."

Bahahaha. Sure, and why not square the circle while we're at it?

Anonymous Lex Rex February 04, 2013 1:31 PM  

"Within my personal circle of acquaintances, there are plenty of Asians who are poor at math, and at least a dozen African-American engineers."

When debating gender/sex based differences, I have found that the rabbits frequently trot out personal anecdotes as evidence. No studies or actual data evidence, just anecdotes.

Anonymous Josh February 04, 2013 1:31 PM  

While arguments of innate ability and predilection are interesting in the context of Internet forums and late-night discussions over beer, my primary concern is a practical one: How can we return America to the center-right consensus that is its natural state? I believe the answer is to take a hard look at the direction so-called “conservatism” has taken in recent years: The GOP since G.W. Bush has become too religious, too shrill, and too anti-intellectual. Rectify these deficiencies, and you will restore conservatism’s broad appeal.    

Ed, have you considered that the natural state of America as a center right country (assuming this is a correct assumption) existed because of the natural state of its voting population was center right, and as the composition of that voting population changes, so does its natural state?

Blogger ray February 04, 2013 1:32 PM  

lol by 2033 the United Sisterhood of Amaryka will have cleansed fatherhood from the western nations, reduced male attendance at universities to 5 percent (required technogeeksters) and forced males from all employment except cops, prison guards, and heroic swat teamers (there'll be LOTS of those!) :O)

as now, by 2033 the US media will be full of articles assuring everybody that the absence of male agency across their nations is because "men are lazy, shiftless, and peter pans" not because Her jimmy choos are always on the necks of the nation's sons

this monstrous mammyland isnt gonna be allowed to continue another 20 years

God is good and wont allow the boys and men that he created as reflections of himself to be enslaved by a Fempire that hates them, their maleness, and the gift of fatherhood in all its authentic forms

pls close the door to eternity on your way out, Babs

the hell that you created for others, you will go into

Anonymous Josh February 04, 2013 1:33 PM  

There's a superfluous "of" after because. I hate editing a sentence whilst in the midst of typing it.

Blogger Joshua_D February 04, 2013 1:39 PM  

Josh February 04, 2013 1:31 PM

Ed, have you considered that the natural state of America as a center right country (assuming this is a correct assumption) existed because of the natural state of its voting population was center right, and as the composition of that voting population changes, so does its natural state?


No. No he hasn't. He seems oblivious to cause and effect. Ed's a prog at heart.

Anonymous Ha February 04, 2013 1:44 PM  

The other Big Giant Fail in Ed's summary is the premise that somehow what America has done (and is doing) is to create a land of Equal Rights and Equal Opportunity. We're not. Certainly women (and minorities) have, in the past, couched their demands as "merely" seeking Equal Rights and Equal Opportunity, but for many decades now it has been abundantly obvious that as a practical matter they seek supremacy, not equality.

Fairness demands that we accept the equal rights of all individuals (as opposed to the group rights advocated by the extreme right and the politically correct left); and practicality demands that we (I am speaking for conservatives here) construct a message of small government and individual liberty that is free of religious, ethnic, and gender biases.

Fairness demands no such thing. But that aside, you are living in a crazy libertarian fantasy land if you think women (and minorities) are seeking a country based on small government and individual liberty.

If the demand for "fairness" leads to the total destruction of the system you hold dear (small government and individual liberty) then it really ought to be time to reevaluate your commitment to "fairness". If "fairness" and "equality" are at odds with liberty - and they manifestly are - then which one is the most important to you? (When making that choice, keep in mind that women think "equality" is more important than liberty, especially your liberty.)

Anonymous Josh February 04, 2013 1:44 PM  

Ed's a prog at heart.

Perhaps. More likely he's just your standard conservative that wants the world to go back to the way it was when he was a kid. Hence his call for Reagan as the cure for what ails the gop.

Anonymous Josh February 04, 2013 1:47 PM  

When making that choice, keep in mind that women think "equality" is more important than liberty, especially your liberty.

That's sexis! And totally untrue because I know like lots of women who totally aren't like that and vote for republicans!

Anonymous feral1404 February 04, 2013 1:55 PM  

"Secondly, we live in a pluralistic society. Fairness demands that we accept the equal rights of all individuals..."

I have no problem with this in theory, except that the concept of 'equal rights' has been infalted and twisted beyond all reason. At present, all animals are NOT equal, thus the angst among different groups.

Our present concept of 'rights' is as far away from the founder's vision as a hawk from the moon.

Blogger IM2L844 February 04, 2013 1:59 PM  

Fairness demands...

It doesn't really matter what comes after that. The Fairness bubble is already over-inflated and will burst sooner or later. I think the 2033 time frame is too generous.

Blogger El Borak February 04, 2013 2:00 PM  

Bahahaha. Sure, and why not square the circle while we're at it?

Precisely the point that Ed either misses or ignores. The point is not that women are not more capable or less capable. The point is not whether they make better managers or worse. The point is that they, for biological reasons they neither they nor anyone else can change, tend to be naturally opposed to liberty and limited government. Therefore trying to structure a limited government philosophy that appeals to them is tilting at windmills and always will be.

The problem is not "gender bias," it's that a person's sex tends to determine their priorities. Those who are physically weak tend to prioritize physical safety more highly than those who are strong. Women, who tend to be physically weak, therefore in the collective tend to eschew liberty - freedom of action followed by variability of outcome - in which their weakness increases their vulnerability.

Note how *all* progressive political solutions, from market regulation to public school testing, are focused on creating predictable, manageable outcomes. It is not Vox and the Ilk that fear results that are "more unpredictable and difficult to manage." That is precisely the fear of women, progs, and technocrats, to the extent there is a difference.

Anonymous Josh February 04, 2013 2:10 PM  

The point is that they, for biological reasons they neither they nor anyone else can change, tend to be naturally opposed to liberty and limited government. Therefore trying to structure a limited government philosophy that appeals to them is tilting at windmills and always will be.

Bingo. Isn't Ed against amnesty? What about the natural conservative latino immigrants? Why doesn't he want to welcome them into society?

Anonymous bw February 04, 2013 2:16 PM  

The truth often offends people.

The metaphysical root of it.

Anonymous The Deuce February 04, 2013 2:28 PM  

Note how *all* progressive political solutions, from market regulation to public school testing, are focused on creating predictable, manageable outcomes.

Well, they're premised and sold to the public on the ability to create predictable, manageable outcomes. They're never really focused on that in practice, except to the extent that their persistent failure is predictable.

Blogger Edward Trimnell February 04, 2013 2:31 PM  

@Josh: "Bingo. Isn't Ed against amnesty? What about the natural conservative latino immigrants? Why doesn't he want to welcome them into society?"

This is Vox's space, so I'll be brief.

I *am* against amnesty for illegal immigrants (most of which are from Mexico). I'm also opposed to what is commonly called "immigration reform" (more or less the same thing as amnesty in practice).

First of all, illegal aliens broke our laws to get here. Secondly, as I said, there is no reason why U.S. taxpayers (of all races and both sexes--and yes, the gay taxpayers as well) should have to provide social welfare benefits for one third of Mexico's population (the approximate number who would immigrate here if they could). Mass immigration also discourages assimilation, as ethnic enclaves reduce the pressure to assimilate.

I don't see that view as incompatible with the position that I would not deny the vote to a man (or woman) named Gutierrez whose relatives have perhaps been here longer than mine. To me, the immigration debate is about taxes and money, not race.

Anonymous Alan February 04, 2013 2:32 PM  

Ed hasn't considered the changing composition of the citizenry because he buys into media spin that it is the right that has changed and gone extreme. It is the only way he can protect his self image of being a conservative against the discovery that he really is a progressive.

Anonymous The Deuce February 04, 2013 2:35 PM  

Fairness demands that we accept the equal rights of all individuals... and practicality demands that we... construct a message of small government and individual liberty that is free of religious, ethnic, and gender biases.

The biggest problem here is that the notion of intrinsic natural rights is based on a particular metaphysical (aka religious) worldview in the first place, to say nothing of equal rights for all. So trying to discuss such things with no religious bias is going to be confused and incoherent at best.

Anonymous DonReynolds February 04, 2013 2:36 PM  

Ed's a prog at heart.

Josh..."Perhaps. More likely he's just your standard conservative that wants the world to go back to the way it was when he was a kid. Hence his call for Reagan as the cure for what ails the gop."

He He.....when I was a kid, Reagan was the "Gipper", doing GE Theater and Death Valley Days. The face of the GOP was Dwight Eisenhower. Yeah, things have changed.....especially in the South. The only Republicans where I lived were all black.

Blogger El Borak February 04, 2013 2:47 PM  

They're never really focused on that in practice, except to the extent that their persistent failure is predictable.

Sure, their persistent failure is predictable, but not from lack of effort or focus. Progs - and I include both liberal progs and conservative ones - never account for the fact that all are not equal, in ability, in motivation, in priority. They merely assume that children (or families, or prisoners, or immigrants, take your pick) are like bars of lead or sheets of paper, equally markable or malleable so long as the correct tools and incedntives are applied.

Progs sell the idea that with enough money, all the children can be above average. But the reality is that they will all come out the same. Those under their charge will all be equal. The intelligent and curious ones will be blunted into mediocrity. The moderately intelligent and disinterested, joined by their frustrated peers, will also make up predictable, manageable average sold as success. Once the hopelessly lost are categorized off into special non-counting categories that demand even more money for admittedly less result, of course.

There are few things more tragic than taking an intelligent, creative, motivated child and making him equal to his peers. But that is the goal and too often the reality, the failure sold as success.

Anonymous Noah B. February 04, 2013 2:57 PM  

As a counter-argument to the idea that allowing women to vote leads to expansive growth of government and loss of liberty, at least in the US, the Progressive movement was already well underway by the time the 19th amendment was enacted in 1920. By that time, representatives elected by men had already voted to create the Federal Reserve and the income tax, directly elect Senators, and outlaw drugs and alcohol. World War I had just concluded, marking the beginnings of American imperialism. Vast new federal bureaucracies were sprouting. In most respects, the country's downward spiral into tyranny was already well underway by 1920.

Anonymous JG February 04, 2013 2:58 PM  

Dear Ed:

Who is WE, OUR and US you keep gibbering about?

Let me guess: “Tutto nello Stato, niente al di fuori dello Stato, nulla contro lo Stato” (everything for the state, nothing outside the state, nothing against the state).

Drop dead,

Ex-Neocon

Anonymous Josh February 04, 2013 3:03 PM  

This:

To me, the immigration debate is about taxes and money, not race.

Is not the whole truth, given this:

Mass immigration also discourages assimilation, as ethnic enclaves reduce the pressure to assimilate.

So which is it?

Anonymous Josh February 04, 2013 3:07 PM  

In most respects, the country's downward spiral into tyranny was already well underway by 1920.

You mean 1865.

Anonymous Crude February 04, 2013 3:07 PM  

Some off-topic news.

http://www.christianpost.com/news/richard-dawkins-loses-debate-against-former-anglican-head-rowan-williams-at-cambridge-university-full-video-89364/

Dawkins loses a debate against Rowan Williams. 324 for Williams' side, 134 against, 85 abstentions.

Losing that handily to Rowan freaking Williams has to hurt.

Anonymous Jack Amok February 04, 2013 3:09 PM  

The marginal characteristics of a particular group (if they are provable and demonstrable at all) do not enable you to make accurate predictions about an individual member of that group.

The interesting thing is that the only way to treat the exceptional individuals "fairly" without destroying civilization is to have rigorous standards that inevitably demonstrate the failing of the masses they are the exceptions from.

Anonymous NateM February 04, 2013 3:41 PM  

"Busload of mentally retarded to the polls"

So THAT'S where all those jill stein votes came from..
was wondering.

Blogger Edward Trimnell February 04, 2013 3:43 PM  

@Josh:

By "assimilation" I mean adopting the dominant culture and language of the home country. I don't refer to changing one's genetic makeup--which would be the only way to assimilate if you accept racial determinist theories.

Blogger tz February 04, 2013 3:44 PM  

Fairness in practice means we are all slaves who are beaten the same.

Equality before the law is one thing - if a woman or man commits a specific crime, they should have an equal chance of suffering the same penalty.

Ayn Rand actually had a very nice microcosm in Atlas Shrugged, the book about what happened to the car company in Wisconsin when everyone shared and voted on who had to do more work and who had to get more benefits.

Being able to make theft or robbery by proxy legal does not make it any more ethical or any less destructive.

Remember the original influence peddling, directed at the distaff side: "you shall be as gods knowing good and evil". Adam is equally culpable for allowing Eve "to vote on the matter".

Women are the ones who wish to rob people of wealth and micromanage behavior - MADD is just Carrie Nation with police holding guns replacing her hatchet - and I mentioned prohibition in the previous thread.

Men demanding the right to kill their children ended with the fall of Rome and Pater Familias. Women demand it at all costs so today we have abortion. Were it possible, what would the 50 million dead say about "freedom"?

Anonymous Josh February 04, 2013 3:51 PM  

By "assimilation" I mean adopting the dominant culture and language of the home country. I don't refer to changing one's genetic makeup--which would be the only way to assimilate if you accept racial determinist theories.

So you do have a cultural objection as well?

I think what you're missing is that what you're calling "racial determinism" is in fact a recognition that cultures vary, and not all cultures lead to the building of western civilization.

Blogger tz February 04, 2013 3:51 PM  

To continue with a thought from the other thread, it is a very different thing to allow input on who is going to repair or improve a building which as lasted millennia and input on blowing it up, tearing it down, and shattering the foundation.

As I also noted elsewhere, when a denomination or subgroup of a church becomes "democratic" it is destined for destruction in a very short time. Voting on what color the curtains are for the youth ministry building isn't a problem, but it ends up they vote on fundamental doctrine. Heaven, the beatific vision, is a dictatorship, but one of an infinitely benevolent dictator. Hell is individualistic and democratic - you, the devil, God, all get one vote.

Anonymous VD February 04, 2013 3:55 PM  

By "assimilation" I mean adopting the dominant culture and language of the home country. I don't refer to changing one's genetic makeup--which would be the only way to assimilate if you accept racial determinist theories.

The problem, Ed, is that these things take a long, long time. It took nearly 1,000 years of contact with civilization for the English and Germans to become what we recognize as functionally civilized. Why do you believe it would take any less time for other tribal groups?

Anonymous Daniel February 04, 2013 3:56 PM  

I don't comprehend the "all boils down to" argument. Not only is it wholly illogical and provably false, it isn't even good rhetoric. Almost everyone with an IQ over 100 is going to take a swipe like that and go: "really? Then why didn't the original guy just boil it down to that?"

"all boils down to" works as rhetoric only on those who already are relying on a lot of puffery (radio or television talking heads - they can't possibly produce that much original content.

Blogger Positive Dennis February 04, 2013 3:57 PM  

My guess is that 2033 is too soon. It took about 50 years after the sack of Rome before the empire fell, but even after that the east continued. Even if we reach a tipping point and everything goes to hell in a hand basket, the American Emoire could continue for some time. Also, even if Ragarnok happens by then, that does not mean that Vox's racial and gender theories are the cause. Personally I am predicting that unless the US gets its act together that we will have a crisis in 3 to 7 years. But the crisis does not mean cannibalism, zombies, or dogs and cats getting married. My personal plan is debt free by the end of this yearWish me luck. What is your plan?

Anonymous Daniel February 04, 2013 4:05 PM  

Positive Dennis, I believe (as I understand it) 2033 would be closer to the sack and break-up, with a sizable remnant (or rather, remnants) pushing forward for perhaps centuries.

The game map from Ace and Eights is not a projection, but an alternate history, but it isn't horribly far (conceptually, not literally) from the picture in my head of the "Shattered Frontier" North America 2060.

So the precursor to this map is what I see "falling apart" circa 2033.

Anonymous Rasputin February 04, 2013 4:08 PM  

"Within my personal circle of acquaintances, there are plenty of Asians who are poor at math, and at least a dozen African-American engineers."

I'm calling bullshit on that last part.

Going from the random http://www.nacme.org/user/docs/RBriefV1no4.pdf random source roughly 5% of American engineers with a bachelor are black. I think it's pretty safe to say that fraction will decrease at higher levels of education *and* that blacks will drop out of engineering at a higher rates than others even after their degree, both for being less able to handle the work as well as getting better opportunities for affirmative action-type management work. So 5% should be safe to use as an upper bound for the fraction of black engineers in the US.

So the odds for a nerdy white guy to just happen to know 12+ black engineers are pretty damn long, unless he somehow specifically seeks black engineers out. Which would be *really* weird, especially considering that blacks generally don't have that much affection for nerdy white guys.

Maybe he counts people he's shaken hands with as acquintances or something.

Anonymous Rasputin February 04, 2013 4:11 PM  

Oh, I didn't notice that you were here mr Trimnell. Care to respond to my claim that you probably were a bit enthusiastic about the number of black engineers you know?

I'd be satisfied with a pseudonymous list along with a note about what kind of engineers they are.

Anonymous Josh February 04, 2013 4:15 PM  

Why do you believe it would take any less time for other tribal groups?
Because Thomas Friedman says the world is flat and hyper connected because of the internets and twitter and Myspace.

Blogger Jehu February 04, 2013 4:22 PM  

Fairness demands that all of my disadvantages be socialized, the burden smeared across respectable society. In addition it demands that my areas of advantage be fully retained and unquestioned.

That is fairness insofar as nearly everyone actually demands it. Those who try to raise 'fairness' as a moral imperative should be mocked, and not in a genteel or civil manner either.

Anonymous Thales February 04, 2013 4:22 PM  

I'm calling bullshit on that last part.

Yeah, that's rather suspect, given that maybe 5% of all folks that graduate with engineering degrees will actually work as engineers. 20 years in the field, and all I've encountered are white and/or asian guys. Maybe he's including teachers, program managers, etc. The people actually solving the technical issues are a pale, unisex bunch.

Anonymous Vidad February 04, 2013 4:27 PM  

Maybe Ed has been working with NAASA engineers?

Anonymous Mina February 04, 2013 4:31 PM  

"I have found that the rabbits frequently trot out personal anecdotes as evidence."

Not just on this topic. Name on topic where they Don't - That's the Challenge!!

Blogger swiftfoxmark2 February 04, 2013 4:32 PM  

Just remember: history shows us that when women were given the right to vote in Germany, six million Jews were later killed off for being Jewish.

In the United States, the cornerstone of feminism is the right to scramble the brains of the unborn baby. This was the next major milestone following women's suffrage. I shudder to think of what is next.

Anonymous Mina February 04, 2013 4:47 PM  

Rasputin February 04, 2013 4:11 PM: Anecdotal story warning!

I have worked in engineering for 25+ years. The black engineer and the woman engineer are at about equal representation: I'd say 1%.

99% are Asian (include Indians in that category) and white males.

This is of course just my observation but it does counter Ed's observation quite handily.

Is he an engineer and does he work in the field?

Blogger James Dixon February 04, 2013 4:48 PM  

> lol by 2033 the United Sisterhood of Amaryka ...

You know, it's entirely possible that Orwell got the gender wrong.

Anonymous Anonagain February 04, 2013 4:59 PM  

Tyranny of the petticoat. It's the third law of sociodynamics. Unfortunately, the adherence to laws regarding human nature, as opposed to those regarding nature, is dependent on the very nature of the humans to whom the laws pertain, which is, more often than not, weak, stupid, delusional, and corrupt.

In their contempt for God's natural order, of which Man is but one component, Leftists relentlessly endeavor to overcome reality, ever ending up in utter failure. They keep jumping off the cliff, expecting that one day the laws of gravity will no longer be in effect.

Anonymous Rasputin February 04, 2013 5:02 PM  

"Is he an engineer and does he work in the field?"

Not a clue, I dug around on his blog to see if he in fact *was* a black engineer (he wasn't), in which case his claim wouldn't be extraordinary, but not that impressive in terms of black achievement in engineering.

I think 1% seems a bit low for women, considering fields like chemical engineering where there's, relatively speaking, a lot of chicks. Though I certainly have no expertise on the subject, being neither American or an engineer.

Anonymous Tad February 04, 2013 5:29 PM  

@Vox Day

It is no surprise to me that women dislike the historical fact that their collective involvement in governance has historically led to the rapid loss of national sovereignty, to economic contraction, and other consequences generally deemed undesirable.

The only problem here—and it is a big one—is that you've not established these things. Simply noting an increase in laws or regulations doesn't do the trick. Was there a progressive increase in laws and regulations while women did not have the vote? If so, we can say that under a system in which on men have the vote, there was a progressive loss of liberty due to the involvement of just men in the process.

Anonymous Cryan Ryan February 04, 2013 5:29 PM  

Re: Black engineers..

I tend to believe Ed - that he knows at least a dozen black engineers. Let me explain.

I graduated in engineering in the seventies and am retired. We had one black guy in our school (1100 students) he was coal black, from Nigeria.

Industry was crying for engineers back then, and they were even diluting down several programs to churn out sheepskins in less math heavy curriculum.

A buddy who could not hack the upper level math, took a lesser degree, and is now on the verge of retirement. His title is "Senior Staff Engineer". Get it? He did not pass the required courses, but was able to get a lesser degree from the engineering school. (B.S. in modern technology or something like that)

Now we both know he is not really an engineer. But whatever...now to the point.

He told me of a recent experience where he was given an assistant, a young black "engineer".

They were attempting to calculate the volume of some dirt to be removed. The black "engineer" did not understand the concept of cubic yards.

Got that? Now digest it...there's more...

She (yeah she) also did not know how many feet are in a yard.

Now swallow that. This is true.

This young black "engineer" does not know how many feet are in a yard. Or understand how to calculate volume.

Are you taking this in?

Do you now see why it is entirely possible Ed does really know a dozen black engineers?

They may show up, and they may take a paycheck, but they don't know what the funny little marks are on the tape measure.

There are 3 kinds of engineers.

1) those who make things happen
2) those who watch what happens'
3) those who wonder what is happening.

Anonymous Mina February 04, 2013 5:33 PM  

Cryan Ryan February 04, 2013 5:29 PM:
Agreed. It is very easy for people to adopt the title without having the knowledge, having earned the degree and having built anything of any significance.

Too easy, actually. I see it all the time.

I also don't think this is limited to the engineering field, sadly. I wonder if this can be tied back to the topic in Vox's original post?

Anonymous Tad February 04, 2013 5:33 PM  

@Vox Day

No one who is capable of grasping the concept that permitting children to choose their meals is not always and necessarily in their long-term best interest should have trouble understanding that permitting an increased influence in governance to any particular group is not always and necessarily in the best interest of that group or anyone else.

Except we aren't talking about children here. We are talking about women.

The fact is, there is, if half the people are forbidden to take part in the governing of the country, you create such a substantial deficit of liberty it makes no sense to talk about the level of liberty that exists at all.

Anonymous Josh February 04, 2013 5:47 PM  

Was there a progressive increase in laws and regulations while women did not have the vote?

Tad,

Which party do women tend to vote for? And even in the supposedly small government Republican party, for which primary candidates do those women vote?

Blogger swiftfoxmark2 February 04, 2013 5:48 PM  

Tad,

What are "women's issues" and do any of them actually expand liberty, ie. the natural rights of life, liberty, and property?

Anonymous Josh February 04, 2013 5:49 PM  

Except we aren't talking about children here. We are talking about women.

The two are not as different as you would like to believe.

Anonymous Josh February 04, 2013 5:50 PM  

The fact is, there is, if half the people are forbidden to take part in the governing of the country, you create such a substantial deficit of liberty it makes no sense to talk about the level of liberty that exists at all.

How do you define liberty?

Anonymous The CronoLink February 04, 2013 5:51 PM  

@Tad
"is that you've not established these things."

Yes he has, several times; you're just late to the party.

"if half the people are forbidden to take part in the governing of the country,"

Voting is a privilege, it's not a right

Anonymous scoobius dubious February 04, 2013 5:53 PM  

"Fairness demands that we accept the equal rights of all individuals..."

Well, yes. So long as we only include the right individuals. Which we clearly have not.

Marxism proclaims, 'From each according to his abilities, to each according to his needs.' This works out just fine for you, if you happen to have a lot more needs than abilities.

Anonymous Rasputin February 04, 2013 5:54 PM  

"The fact is, there is, if half the people are forbidden to take part in the governing of the country, you create such a substantial deficit of liberty it makes no sense to talk about the level of liberty that exists at all."

That's assuming that taking part in the governing of the country is itself an important freedom, which I don't really think is true for most libertarian thought. As far as I'm aware most libertarians would be fine with a heridatary ruler as long as that ruler's powers were limited and made to respect negative rights.

From that pov democracies *only* redeeming trait is that it tends to lead towards more liberty than other methods of government, not that democracy in itself is necessary, or even a part of, liberty.

Blogger Giraffe February 04, 2013 5:57 PM  

There are 3 kinds of engineers.

No, there's more than that.

sanitation engineers (garbagemen)
maintenance engineers (custodians)
I wonder if these aren't the engineers he's talking about.

Not to mention the kind that drive trains.

Anonymous Mina February 04, 2013 6:13 PM  

Giraffe February 04, 2013 5:57 PM:
Those are funny and have always irritated me.

As a way of poking fun at them, I have my title on FaceBook listed as "Materials Management Engineer" at (my horse farm) - meaning of course that what I do is bring materials in (bedding, hay, feed, water) and then take materials out (dirty bedding and manure) every day, three times day.

Yep that qualifies me as an "Engineer". That and I drive a train real good.

Anonymous Noah B. February 04, 2013 7:12 PM  

"Was there a progressive increase in laws and regulations while women did not have the vote? If so, we can say that under a system in which on men have the vote, there was a progressive loss of liberty due to the involvement of just men in the process."

I do believe there was a progressive loss of liberty while men had political control of the West. Women were advocating most of those changes, but it wasn't their votes led to loss of liberty pre-1920.

However, the New Deal Progressivism was a far greater expansion of government than anything since the Civil War and Reconstruction. And it would appear that men voted for FDR in larger percentages than women did.

Regarding the experiences of other nations, I believe France had already become socialist prior to allowing women to vote. The UK, too, was already in decline by the time women's suffrage was granted.

If your opponents are competent, this could be a challenging debate.

Anonymous Shutup, Tad February 04, 2013 7:26 PM  

if half the people are forbidden to take part in the governing of the country, you create such a substantial deficit of liberty it makes no sense to talk about the level of liberty that exists at all.

You are so right, Tad. So shutup, then.

Anonymous scoobius dubious February 04, 2013 7:30 PM  

"I believe France had already become socialist prior to allowing women to vote."

Well I think it'd be sort of silly to argue direct linear cause and effect in a petri dish in which there are so many different variables and forces in play. But then again, there's liberty and then there's liberty, just as there's socialism and then there's socialism.

There's nothing the matter with a couple of reasonable social safety nets if they're set up intelligently (and funded by something more tangible than wishful thinking and unicorn farts) and they respond accurately to things like price signals, stimuli, and actual facts on the ground. (For instance, education in the US will never be "fixed" because no one is willing to say out loud that the cause of bad schools is that they're full of bad students, not the other way around.) And as long as the social safety nets are run by, and designed for, your own actual society, not the society of invading parasites and hostile separatist populations. These things are best viewed on something like an asymptotic curve; my idea of liberty has precious little to do with dying in some Wild West gunfight at the age of 32, just as my idea of socialism has nothing to do with (in PJ O'Rourke's memorable phrase) somehow always having to give my golf clubs to people in Namibia.

As Beckett once said, the danger is in the neatness of identifications.

Anonymous Mike M. February 04, 2013 7:43 PM  

"Fairness demands that we accept the equal rights of all individuals..."

Equal rights before the law, certainly. Equal opportunity, absolutely.

But all systems of government are intended to put authority in the hands of those most capable of using it wisely. Which will - which MUST - exclude a good many people.

The only question being how to choose. Aristotle had a lot to say about this...and concluded that a republic, with the franchise wielded by men of the upper middle class, was the best over the long haul.

Anonymous Anonymous February 04, 2013 7:44 PM  

If The Bill of Rights were to be consistently upheld, extending the franchise would be less problematic. From Bastiat's "The Law":

In fact, if law were restricted to protecting all persons, all liberties, and all properties; if law were nothing more than the organized combination of the individual's right to self defense; if law were the obstacle, the check, the punisher of all oppression and plunder—is it likely that we citizens would then argue much about the extent of the franchise?

Under these circumstances, is it likely that the extent of the right to vote would endanger that supreme good, the public peace? Is it likely that the excluded classes would refuse to peaceably await the coming of their right to vote? Is it likely that those who had the right to vote would jealously defend their privilege?

If the law were confined to its proper functions, everyone's interest in the law would be the same. Is it not clear that, under these circumstances, those who voted could not inconvenience those who did not vote?--Frederic Bastiat

Expanding the Welfare State is far more damaging to liberty than extending the vote.

MALTHUS

Anonymous Jack Amok February 04, 2013 8:00 PM  

The fact is, there is, if half the people are forbidden to take part in the governing of the country, you create such a substantial deficit of liberty it makes no sense to talk about the level of liberty that exists at all.

If half the people's idea of "liberty" is selling themselves and the rest of us into slavery to a handful of despots, then you create a far worse deficit of liberty by letting them vote.

Liberty isn't about voting. The only connection between liberty and voting is the ability to vote tyrants out of office, but we don't seem to have that any more.

Anonymous The other skeptic February 04, 2013 8:13 PM  

In fact, it is men, and probably only 10% at that, who have created civilization(s).

Anonymous The other skeptic February 04, 2013 8:15 PM  

But all systems of government are intended to put authority in the hands of those most capable of using it wisely. Which will - which MUST - exclude a good many people.

Well, intent and practice seem to be vastly different. In practice, all systems of government seem to end up in the hands of corrupt, despotic, nepotistic individuals and groups.

Anonymous TheExpat February 04, 2013 8:27 PM  

Expanding the Welfare State is far more damaging to liberty than extending the vote.

aaaaaaand... which gender/population groups are the main force behind the expansion of the welfare state?

Extending the vote and expanding the welfare state - the two are one.

Anonymous cherub's revenge February 04, 2013 9:28 PM  

I'm calling bullshit on that last part.

I'm calling bullshit too. I've been involved in the building trades in Chicago for over 15 years and I've encountered dozens, probably well over a hundred engineers - HVAC/mechanical, materials, civil, plumbing, electrical, sewer and structural, and I've come across exactly one Black engineer, and I'm pretty sure he was an AA contract for Cook County.

Even in the big liberal city, officials quietly bow to reality when it may be their ass that plunges to death in a fiery elevator shaft - for now anyway.

Anonymous Koanic February 04, 2013 9:40 PM  

Come to think of it, Roissy must be another big-eye melon.

Anonymous Oy February 04, 2013 9:42 PM  

if half the people are forbidden to take part in the governing of the country, you create such a substantial deficit of liberty it makes no sense to talk about the level of liberty that exists at all.

Expanding the vote in the name of liberty has created an even more substantial deficit of liberty, dolt.

Anonymous Anonymous February 04, 2013 10:16 PM  

Greencarman here...


Don Reynolds--What fairness is there in taking busloads of mentally retarded to the polls with instructions on how to vote, which completely cancels the votes of an equal number of normal/rational people?

What's YOUR standards, your criteria, your metric? Please divulge.


Don Reynolds--What is BEST for the nation and its citizens has nothing to do with giving undue influence in political decisions to the bottom of the social pyramid.


And who, praytell, determines who is naive and who is wise, who is unsophisticated and who is sophisticated--in other words, who are the “proper” voters or rulers? Why should one group of people assume that their best interests will be taken into account by, essentially, elitists who assume their intellect is superior compared to the masses? Why should women and blacks and gays and other groups be beholden to such governance? Because those whom YOU believe are most qualified to vote/rule?



Anonymous Anonymous February 04, 2013 10:58 PM  

Greencarman here...

VD--It is no surprise to me that women dislike the historical fact that their collective involvement in governance has historically led to the rapid loss of national sovereignty, to economic contraction, and other consequences generally deemed undesirable. But history is as it is. The facts are as they are. Simply wishing things were otherwise is neither realistic nor a rational approach to the issue.


YOUR interpretation of the facts. Simply saying you are correct without taking into account a myriad of factors--social conditions, economic upticks and downturns, political ideologies defined, countered, and redefined, historical accounts based on subjective points of view--is neither realistic nor a rational approach to the issue.

Again, it's doesn't matter in the long run. Women will exercise their right to vote, minorities will participate in our political system, and our country's demographics will swing in a multicultural direction. There is nothing you or I can do about it.

Anonymous Anonymous February 04, 2013 11:07 PM  

Greencarman here...


Mike M.--But all systems of government are intended to put authority in the hands of those most capable of using it wisely. Which will - which MUST - exclude a good many people. The only question being how to choose. Aristotle had a lot to say about this...and concluded that a republic, with the franchise wielded by men of the upper middle class, was the best over the long haul.


Aristotle is dead. The definition of liberty has grown and matured as the human race has progressed. History has clearly demonstrated when human beings are cared for, suppressed, or reprimanded for their "own good" by other human beings, chaos ensues. Not because of exercise of liberty, but its deprivation.

Anonymous Ulmer Miller February 04, 2013 11:57 PM  

"...women dislike the historical fact that their collective involvement in governance has historically led to the rapid loss of national sovereignty, to economic contraction, and other consequences generally deemed undesirable

Vox, I'd like to read about these moments in time. Can anyone point me in the right direction? (Other than the United States, of course.)

Anonymous scoobius dubious February 05, 2013 12:26 AM  

"Why should one group of people assume that their best interests will be taken into account by, essentially, elitists who assume their intellect is superior compared to the masses? Why should women and blacks and gays and other groups be beholden to such governance?"

Okay, I've got an offer on that. We'll do a little experiment. We'll send women and blacks and gays and Latinos to some undeveloped wilderness part of the world (some steppe or mountainous stretch of Central Asia, for example), and if they manage to fight off the locals, husband the resources properly, form a just and functioning government, and then build a civilization that's so awesome and fantastically rich that everyone else in the world wants to move there, then if and when the white males show up as supplicant immigrants, they'll just have to agree to be governed by blacks and gays and women, who will have shown that they in fact know what's best.

Do we have a deal?

(I don't even want to know about the results of this awesome imaginary country, no matter how awesome it turns out. I just want blacks and gays and feminists and Latinos to leave America, and move someplace that they'll doubtless all like so much better wifout de ebil raciss whiteboys holding em down, mon.)

Anonymous The other skeptic February 05, 2013 12:32 AM  

They were attempting to calculate the volume of some dirt to be removed. The black "engineer" did not understand the concept of cubic yards.

Well, I is a software inginer, and even I know that stuff. I also know that 25.4mm is about twice the width of a 50 BMG bullet.

Anonymous Roundtine February 05, 2013 2:54 AM  

The fact is, there is, if half the people are forbidden to take part in the governing of the country, you create such a substantial deficit of liberty it makes no sense to talk about the level of liberty that exists at all.

Explain how the Turkish military, overthrowing Islamic governments who would have restricted liberty, are in fact themselves restricting liberty. Unless instead of liberty, you mean will of the people.

Blogger stareatgoatsies February 05, 2013 2:23 PM  

Female suffrage doesn't begin and end with women being given the right to vote. No successful politician can afford to ignore the preferences of 50% of the electorate. That's the part that has positive consequences for female liberty.

Does anybody around here argue that previous generations of young women had more options and thus more freedom than the current generation?

Anonymous Anonymous February 05, 2013 2:24 PM  

Extending the vote and expanding the welfare state - the two are one.--TheExpat

You seem to be conflating economics and politics. The economist Thomas Sowell believes there is a distinction between them. I agree with him.

MALTHUS

Blogger Some dude February 05, 2013 7:32 PM  

It jist occurred to me, that is why those of us who understand the cause of the collapse have to document and leave a testimony for future men. We may not be able to save ourselves, but we might be able to save another generation from making the same mostake

Anonymous Anonymous February 05, 2013 11:57 PM  

Greencarman here...

Scoobius dubious, how about you conduct an experiment...live in the real world, where there is diversity in life, and deal with women, gays, and blacks with kindness and consideration, as God intended.

Otherwise, lay off the bong.

Anonymous Anonymous February 07, 2013 7:19 AM  

Congratulations, you have once again made an appearance on "Fundies Say the Darndest things"!!

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