Monthly Archives: August 2017

On Renaming Schools

The Ontario Elementary School Teachers union has recently come out calling for the removal of the name Sir John A. MacDonald from all schools because of his waged “genocide” against Indigenous peoples in Canada.   The argument is that we wouldn’t expect Jewish kids to happily attend Adolph Hitler Elementary School in Germany, so why would we expect Mohawk children to attend Sir John A. MacDonald Secondary School in Waterloo, Ontario?

In response some on the Right (and centre) object that the Leftists pushing this agenda of tearing down statues and insisting on renaming buildings and institutions are “revising history” and practicing Presentism – judging people of the past by current moral standards. Truthfully, everyone born 100 years ago was a racist, sexist and homophobe by today’s standards.  We need to consider that had you been born in 1920’s Germany then very likely you would have been a Nazi.  Had you been born in 1920’s Russia then very likely you would have gladly marched dissidents off to the gulags.  This is not to say that you would have been a “bad” person if you had, only that humans are fallible and our behaviours and attitudes are influenced by the cultures we are raised in and those cultures spawned a lot of deeds we would judge as evil today.  But just because we are born in this age and in this part of the world does not somehow make us uniquely and morally superior to those flawed peoples of the past.  We are flawed as well and should humbly appreciate this fact.  No doubt in just a few short decades our own children will look back at our attitudes and be dismayed and disgusted – does that make us “bad” people?

However, the Left view commemorative statues and naming things in honour of past leaders as an endorsement of those individuals and thus their worst beliefs that cannot be abided. I cite their “worst” beliefs because the Left never seem to want to judge people on the best things that they did but only on the worst things.  Forget that Sir John A. MacDonald was a founder of a great Western country that has since founding provided freedom and prosperity for millions of people and participated valiantly in wars against evil regimes.  No, let’s judge him by his starving of Indigenous people and establishment of residential schools.  Of course the counter argument is that whitewashing someone’s record could warrant even Pol Pot could have a school named after him if we restricted ourselves to judging people solely on the best they had to offer during their lives.

What if we approached this problem with a libertarian solution – the practice of Localism; provide local autonomy over cultural matters. If the people of Waterloo want Sir John A MacDonald taken off the name of their high school let them vote and say so – it’s their school, not the federal or provincial governments.  If the people of Charlottesville want a statue of Robert E Lee taken down let them vote locally and decide – it’s their history, not the history of Californians.  Conversely if the people in Quebec want the name of Wilfred Laurier retained on their buildings despite his advocacy for a Chinese head tax and calling Indigenous people “savages” then that’s their decision and if the people in British Columbia asked that his name be pulled off buildings there because of the high Chinese populations that’s OK too – the two solitudes can coexist.

However, the imposition from on high of politically correct directives on these matters should be avoided.  The argument on both sides has merit but polls show consistently that most people are opposed to the Left’s historical revanchism so why let a minority impose its will on the majority regardless of the minority’s claim to moral correctness.  Make the decisions on these matters local and democratic.  The great fear of course here in Canada is that the Panda Bear Justin Trudeau and his leftist sycophants at the provincial levels will start to make this an overarching policy and once again the imposition of cultural values of Toronto, Montreal and Ottawa being imposed on everyone else.

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On Social Justice Warrior Modus Operandi and the Google Memo

So some young doofus who worked at Google thought it was wise (it wasn’t) to post a 10-page manifesto (who writes long manifestos other than Ted Kaczyinski?) to the company website complaining about the company’s diversity hiring practices. He’s fired now.

He’d do well to read the following. The Left are obsessed with three things; Security, the Great Virtues (Agape, Egalitarianism, Justice) and Agency.   Under the heading of Egalitarianism falls the ideas of Equality and Fairness and a subheading under Equality is Equality of Outcomes.  Not Equality of Opportunity… Equality of Outcomes.

So the typical Social Justice Warrior modus operandi is as follows;

1) Search for an issue where the outcomes for one group are not the same as for another group (or groups);

2) Label the group enjoying a favorable outcome the Oppressors;

3) Label the groups not enjoying a favorable outcome the Victims;

4) Declare that the Oppressors are enjoying favorable outcomes because of discriminatory practices or societal biases against the Victims. These identified discriminatory practices can be merely alleged and unproven because, in true post-Modernism thinking so long as something is perceived or felt it has truth attached to it.

5) Demand that reverse discriminatory practices be employed to correct the imbalance in outcomes;

6) Never, ever entertain any suggestion that the disparity in outcomes might be the result of Victim behavior or character. Ostracize anyone who suggests as such and label them homophobes, transphobes, racists, sexists, bigots, etc.

7) Never, ever look back over your shoulder and review to see if the reversal of discriminatory practices has worked to actually improve outcomes for the Victims;

8)  Return to 1).

So, let’s take the issue of there not being a lot of female computer programmers.

There are way more male programmers than female programmers in Silicon Valley. An unequal outcome.

The males in charge of tech companies in Silicon Valley = the Oppressors

Females (in general) = the Victims

Females don’t get hired as computer programmers because Men (the Patriarchy) are systematically refusing to hire them.

Demand that this practice is reversed and that Men go out of their way to hire more female programmers to right the imbalance.

Scream “Sexist!” at anyone who suggests the problem may in fact be that a) not a lot of women actually go into computer programming or b) it’s not an occupation that women have shown to be particularly great at (with exceptions, of course)… for whatever reason.

Demand that affirmative action and hiring quotas be put in place, but never go back and see if these practices have actually improved the outcomes for female programmers, knowing instead that what it will more likely do is prevent male programmers from getting hired or promoted, which is OK because it’s harming the Oppressors (justice).

And so on. I could do this on any social issue of the day.  The formula for faux outrage, labeling, demands or justice and ignorance of results can apply to just about anything.

So young Google guy, James Damore, please learn your lesson.  You can’t fight the machine.

Here’s an exercise; Justin Trudeau says there is not enough female representation in federal cabinet.  Go through steps 2-8.  Enjoy.

 

Update – here’s the memo.

https://assets.documentcloud.org/documents/3914586/Googles-Ideological-Echo-Chamber.pdf

It’s actually a very reasonable and well thought out article.  However, that doesn’t change the fact that writing it and posting it on your company board, when you know you work for a left-leaning company, is not a wise thing to do if you hope to keep your job.  Brave.  But bravery’s cousin is very often stupidity.

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