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November 26, 2013 / compassioninpolitics

Still more answers and criticisms of Wilderson and Afro-pessimism–the Online Debate Part I

1) Stereotyping cops doesn’t help. If you claim the issue of paying attention to the margins or diversity or race is important–you cant overlook the ways in which race and human choice intersect with being a cop.

2) Why aren’t all minorities in jail if there is a system thats systematically unjust and racist??? Why do we have a Constitution??? Why don’t we look more like Germany (circa 20s & 40s) or South Africa (circa 1980s and before under aparteid)

3) Poverty is the lynch pin for multiple measures of well-being

(see also Millenium Development Goals)

4) Also those modernity good cards say that violence is going down

a) that means its easier for minorities to not die & reach their potential

b] if race is the root of (all) violence/war….that means that racism is going down too.

5) You can manipulate poverty levels to win individual elections…….but

a) this is over broad swaths of time

b] this claim simply isn’t good enough to say “all poverty stats are bunk”

6) Hopelessness. It is true that we will never solve racism 100%, but progressive solutions

The ability for minorities to write stuff like this proves the system isn’t determinism. Determinism exists as a philosophy to turn us into animals or robots.

7) Democracy. Ok….you’re playing the metaphor and hyperbole game. It eliminates the continuum of options and empowerment that exists between governments–and ultimately flattens existence (ie deprives us of its diversity). This helps you to overlook cracks in the system or ways to work in the system–because your lense is skewed.

You can’t see the light….if you are predisposed to seeing only the darkness of night.

8) Immigrants (aka people) vote with their feet. They want to be here. They are the ultimate comparative evidence on this question.

9) Arc of history toward justice (some of this has been above–the prisons issue has more to do with mandatory minimums and privitization than systemic racism.

10) The alternative

A) Transition violence.

b] Anarchy & nuclear weapons

C) We don’t know….we don’t have plans. For group events over 12 people….its a freaking good idea to have plans. In this case, its 12 with like 12 billion versus just 12

Three core thoughts on Wilderson/Afropessimism:
1) It seems to me if you can win the arch of history moving toward less racism–and a huge transition violence/anarchy argument, that you shouldn’t have a problem beating this argument.

2) I also tend to think the essentialism & determinism & lack of hope embedded in this argument make it fundamentally philosophically bankrupt.

3) There are simply large sections of history it doesn’t seem to pay attention to, which is intellectually dishonest at a minimum.

I’ve previously written on here (Learn Policy Debate) about:
1) My criticism of Wilderson/Afro-pessimism

2) My thoughts on Race performance arguments

——————————————————————–

To address the more general thread movement/dialog–I was doing some wiki work and ran across this:

Limited deliberative forums like debate which discuss Latin American specific policies prevent elite domination, develops agency, and promotes epistemological equality
Baxter 10 (Jorge, Education Specialist, Department of Education and Culture in the Organization of American States, Former Coordinator of the Inter-American Program on Education for Democratic Values and Practices at the OAS, PHD in International Comparative Education and Policy from University of Maryland College Park, “Towards a Deliberative and Democratic Model of International Cooperation in Education in Latin America”, Inter-American Journal of Education for Democracy, 3(2), 224-254, https://scholarworks.iu.edu/journals/index.php/ried/article/viewFile/1016/1307, Accessed: 7/30/13)OG

In the context of international¶ education cooperation and international¶ development in Latin America
AND
of quality¶ and equity in education at national and local¶ levels.

They will cause people to think their oppression doesn’t fit under the umbrella of anti-blackness- that was above. They fracture the movement that opposes anti-blackness because they play the oppression Olympics- including age, gender, class, and sexual orientation in a racial democracy is key.
Roberts, 2012 (Neil Roberts is Assistant Professor of Africana Studies and Faculty Affiliate in Political Science at Williams College. Political Philosophy Theory and Event Volume 15, Issue 3, 2012)
Assessing how we might reimagine discourse on Martin, Hancock’s article situates the deaths of
AND
— however evanescent, however staggered, and however long—to materialize.

Focusing solely on race as the sole determining factor in causes of anti-blackness is totalizing and ignores discrimination in conjunction with the black body like age and gender. It ignores lived experiences of age and race discrimination like the Trayvon Martin case.
Hancock, 2012 (Ange-Marie Hancock is Associate Professor of Political Science and Gender Studies at the University of Southern California. A globally recognized expert in intersectionality, she has published The Politics of Disgust and the Public Identity of the “Welfare Queen” (2004) and Solidarity Politics for Millennials: A Guide to Ending the Oppression Olympics (2011), in addition to articles in several journals, “Trayvon martin, Intersectionality, and the Politics of Disgust” Political Philosophy Theory and Event Volume 15, Issue 3, 2012)
Paradigm intersectionality features five distinct, intimately connected, dimensions, which seek to take
AND
its short way to or already arrived at a post-racial future.

The alt’s rejection of the states makes it seem stronger than it actually is. This dooms the alt to reproduce the hierarchal structures we critique.
Guattari and Rolnik, schitzoanalysts, revolutionaries, 1986
Felix and Suely, Molecular Revolution in Brazil, p. 120-121
Comment: It’s good that you mentioned those homosexuals who worked within the system as
AND
as possible to create other territories of life, which are often clandestine.

They say every struggle, as long as it isn’t centrally focused on racism, is irrelevant. This is moral absolutism- says there is only one issue we should pay attention to. There is no way for anyone to know that ALL OF THE WORLD IS EQUALLY IMPLICATED IN THE POLITICAL ONTOLOGY OF RACE. Racism is not the defining feature of life- the lived experiences of groups based on ‘Race’, gender, social class, sexuality and disability and special needs are all multi-dimensional determinants of inequality – absent this recognition, radical politics becomes conservative

Hill and Boxley 7 Dave Hill and Simon Boxley, University College Northampton, UK and University of Winchester, UK, Journal for Critical Education Policy Studies, Critical Teacher Education for Economic, Environmental and Social Justice: an Ecosocialist Manifesto,
Volume 5, Number 2 (November 2007)

6. A commitment to the development of the ethical/moral dimension of critical
AND
, and be informed by, ‘anti-classism’ and anti-sexism.

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18 Comments

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  1. compassioninpolitics / Nov 26 2013 11:08 pm

    1) Stereotyping cops doesn’t help. If you claim the issue of paying attention to the margins or diversity or race is important–you cant overlook the ways in which race and human choice intersect with being a cop.

    2) Why aren’t all minorities in jail if there is a system thats systematically unjust and racist??? Why do we have a Constitution??? Why don’t we look more like Germany (circa 20s & 40s) or South Africa (circa 1980s and before under aparteid)

    3) Poverty is the lynch pin for multiple measures of well-being

    (see also Millenium Development Goals)

    4) Also those modernity good cards say that violence is going down

    a) that means its easier for minorities to not die & reach their potential

    b] if race is the root of (all) violence/war….that means that racism is going down too.

    5) You can manipulate poverty levels to win individual elections…….but

    a) this is over broad swaths of time

    b] this claim simply isn’t good enough to say “all poverty stats are bunk”

    6) Hopelessness.

    A) It is true that we will never solve racism 100%, but progressive solutions

    b] Lots of suffering is insufficient to prove that its literally hopeless for everyone and everything. (you further have to prove that change is 100% impossible). If you cross apply our empirical examples of change you at least get 50/50.

    C)The ability for minorities to write stuff like this proves the system isn’t determinism. Determinism exists as a philosophy to turn us into animals or robots. This is the philosophy that eats at the basis of your version or rather distortion of reality.

    7) Democracy. Ok….you’re playing the metaphor and hyperbole game. It eliminates the continuum of options and empowerment that exists between governments–and ultimately flattens existence (ie deprives us of its diversity). This helps you to overlook cracks in the system or ways to work in the system–because your lense is skewed.

    You can’t see the light….if you are predisposed to seeing only the darkness of night.

    8) Immigrants (aka people) vote with their feet. They want to be here. They are the ultimate comparative evidence on this question.

    9) Arc of history toward justice (some of this has been above–the prisons issue has more to do with mandatory minimums and privitization than systemic racism.

    10) The alternative

    A) Transition violence.

    b] Anarchy & nuclear weapons

    c) I don’t see why your indict of Hobbes applies. If anything–your criticism would have to come from someone who didn’t have a hyper-pesimissim about humanity. And you don’t have to be a Hobbesian to accept the logic that anarchy or lack of laws would result in massively bad stuff happening. (yes, the criminal justice system is better than nothing)

    d) You say……”We don’t know….we don’t have plans.” For group events over 12 people….its a freaking good idea to have plans. In this case, its 12 with like 12 billion versus just 12. Otherwise, chaos happens–or something pretty close to chaos happens.

  2. compassioninpolitics / Nov 27 2013 12:11 am

    Overpopulation = scarcity (ever ism) and war
    Government solves, democracy solves (I think this may be comparative with toto)

    Determinism disad (= toto, etc..)

    Alternative sources of hope

    Alternative policy solutions

    Specific indicts of afro-pessimism
    (perhaps indicts of identity politics or particular reps of race)

    Need a better analysis:
    1) Modernization solves (ie for minorities, race, etc…)
    2) the arc of history tends toward justice
    3) Criminal justice system and race

  3. compassioninpolitics / Nov 27 2013 2:12 am

    Possibly, hegemony checks racism/west is the best.

    Conspiracy theory bad

    Extremism, radicalism bad (???) Utopianism bad (???)

    Perhaps a government key to movements, movements solve oppression/racism, etc..

    “Letter of the Law” against itself

  4. compassioninpolitics / Nov 27 2013 4:04 pm

    Quote
    We aren’t stereotyping all cops – we don’t say that all cops are bad, but we look to the streets and the races of people being arrested and searched and come to certain conclusions – this may not be causation, but there is a strong correlation. I don’t need to prove that the entirety of America’s legal system is screwy to make the statement that there was something supremely fucked up about Zimmerman’s trial.

    To prove the system is terminally screwed and without hope–yes you do. Otherwise I can suggest you’re cherry picking or using isolated examples. PS. Zimmerman only proves the system in Florida is messed up regarding Stand Your Ground law. That represents a rather small portion of the US & the cases in that system.

    The Constitution is amazing (especially given the alternatives). And the Constitution is a living document. Jefferson isn’t in charge of if slavery is good/bad, constitutional/unconstitutional. And the constitution was helpful in advancing the cause of minorities (voting, school, etc). It is a bastion for protecting minority civil rights.

    I don’t see how labeling or mislabeling my argument as (the West is the best) gets you anything. My argument is that the most important data…..
    Free monetary exchange creates winners and losers. Minorities are better under that system than say China or feudalism. Inequality of results is the price of freedom–the sure beats Commy Russia.

    Quote
    Disqualifying certain categories of people from government is (surprise) not a recipe for democracy. I refuse to even stoop to the level of seriously criticizing the racism of your metaphors – whiteness of light/darkness of night binary – just be careful what you say.

    Everybody over 18 can vote that hasn’t committed a serious crime. Fine, counterplan with all people have the right to vote. Burning it to the ground gets rid of the vote and the institutions that support the vote.

    I’m familiar with this light/dark metaphors argument (usually using Hibbits in a law review I believe). Me using the word black or dark doesn’t make me a racist. It gets back to intent of the speaker–and you don’t have access to that. MLK used light and dark metaphors throughout the majority of his speeches–that doesn’t mean he was a racist or perpetuated racism. So how do I as a scientist tell the difference between white/dark or as a teacher or any other career where these distinctions matter….sometimes with life or death consequences. Its better to have light to see….than being confused or misperceive or otherwise perceptually distorted by the dark of night. Thats reality–thats not racism. (That demarcation is waaaay overly simplistic) The only way I can be a non-racist is to not use white/dark, light/dark metaphors and visual communication. Thats when PC//post-whatever movement becomes draconian and procrustean (look them up…they might just be on your SAT).

    Quote
    nuclear testing in the Fourth World?

    Its called a moritorium. And thats a blip on the radar in race relations (we control momentum of the link and the direction of history)

    Quote
    The country where people have the freedom to not get shot in streets and raped by oppressive paramilitary forces and can work for less that minimum wage is in fact NOT a reason why we are good, it is a reason why we are less awful – this is not an excuse.

    I never said that was good. I’m just saying the good you aren’t talking about (conveiniently) plus that is comparatively better than nothing–where you don’t have constitutional rights–where a you effectively have a lynch mob type. Rollling the clock back on civil rights protections isn’t the magical answer–the rainbows, unicorns, and kumbaya moment the hyper-left academics make it out to be (errr spin it to be).

    Quote
    5) Yes, while overall poverty may decrease you have to remember that everything is relative – not the 1%’s salaries but rather the 0.01%’s are rising so much higher that the net quality of life isn’t increasing.

    Inequality, abscent heavy-handed intervention that treats the people like objects or robots or both (whites & minorities)–would be the only way to rectify this. And there is no evidence that in the abscence of a legal framework the situation would be better.

    The cruelty remains under wraps huh? Its not my fault you can win a decent impact.

    You didn’t isolate an impact to Americanism, that you hadn’t already mentioned.

    You seem to blow off the Hobbesian anarchy claims that undercut & turn both your impacts and alternative

    Chaos in government, weapons, and military would probably be a bad thing. Ever heard of the loose nukes scenario? That massively outweighs any impacts–including testing. It would give anyone with big enough guns access to the big read button.

    * I apologize for any gaps in the line by line–my computer/internet access is acting up. (somewhat fixed, but I think some stuff got a bit out of order, sorry).

  5. compassioninpolitics / Nov 27 2013 7:34 pm

    I was able to go back and write answers to fill in some of the gaps. Thanks for understanding.

    1) Police examples. Humans make mistakes, they are human.
    a) Police are in the fog of war and must make decisions based on limited understanding, with time pressure, and in a context where they have an obligation to protect the public and keep themselves from dying as well. In that context, errors will be made. You have no statistical basis to tell us if they are anything more than abberations and obscure examples–much less the evidence to prove they are motivated by race.
    b] you think in a world where law and order types like cops…..who at least have legal accountability now……wouldn’t double-down on abuses post the alternative? Especially when the risks of misperception and the fog of war multiple 1000 fold (you can’t tell who is your friend, foe, and have no mechanism to resolve disputes).

    2) Democide is a comparative argument: http://www.hawaii.ed…ills/MURDER.HTM

    3) How has your life been made worse by The Patriot Act in a tangible way? But we haven’t had anything approaching 9/11 on American soil. Small privacy violations of privacy beats being 6 foot under or having to deal with another 9/11.

    4) Arguments that say the west is the best are racist?
    a)ungrounded overgeneralization
    b] Comparative evidence: As I said, other nations vote with their feet AND they write Constitutions to protect minorities AND model our federalism, which on balance keeps the peace. They model our representative democracy, which while imperfect sure does have more representation and voice and peace than the alternatives. (Thats Diamond & its the Democide cards)

    5) Capitalism isn’t perfect–but comparatively better than a world without institutions and where trade isn’t free (ie its distorted or controlled or dictated).

    Quote
    Saying that you are better than Feudalism IS NOT the hallmark of a great nation.

    My argument is the logical alternative to getting rid of capitalism would likely revert to feudalism. We’ve spent a number of years getting here….to turn the clock back something like 500 years seems silly and counter-productive. There may be alternatives to capitalism but a “burn the baby with the bathwater” strategy of burn it down–sounds like the strategy of an irrate 3 year old rather than an intelligent 30 year old. Its the ultimate Eric Cartman strategy applied writ large across the US. Thomas Jefferson & our founding fathers are better governors and policy makers than Eric Cartman or a 3 year old. Its historically proven.

    5) Legals institutions = predictability to the life of African Americans and other minorities as well–as well as creating accountability and justice in terms of institutions. The alternative is Somalia and Rwanda. When the rule of law isn’t taken seriously, life implodes–and undermines everything you hold dear. Thats a net turn to your argument.

    6) Determinism in your argument blows.
    a) Determinism = command and control–which justifies, rationalizes, and perpetuates dehumanization of all a races (that means we turn and subsume your impacts jack!)
    b] And it coops your alternative–if its deterministic–we have no hope of changing (even if we burn it all down literally or metaphorically)

    7) Ill calculated foreign policy by the US isn’t a justification for burning it all down its either a justification for:
    a) Not doing that again (ie banning that foreign policy)
    b] keeping foreign affairs more accountable
    c) I would make the argument that our foreign policy has gotten better over time.
    d) Plus, we did stop the world from having Hitler evicerate the world with human ovens (aka concentration camps). And minorities specifically benefited from that because thats who Hitler was after
    e) and the loose nukes transition outweighs
    f) FYI: I’m saying prolif bad….specifically prolif to rogue entites which can’t be deterred, have no experience with handling nuclear weapons, and are in a massive fog of war due to chaos/anarchy (the world as we know it imploding).

    8) Romanticism of other cultures.
    a) that takes out your alternative or the hope of it solving
    b] it indicts your claims as racist & stereotypical–this solves back any latent links to racism (particularly your claims and assertions about the West is the Best “data”).

  6. compassioninpolitics / Nov 27 2013 7:48 pm

    This is an update of the above dialog–specifically: 9, 10, and 11 are new. I think the other is largely the same.

    I was able to go back and write answers to fill in some of the gaps. Thanks for understanding.

    1) Police examples. Humans make mistakes, they are human.
    a) Police are in the fog of war and must make decisions based on limited understanding, with time pressure, and in a context where they have an obligation to protect the public and keep themselves from dying as well. In that context, errors will be made. You have no statistical basis to tell us if they are anything more than abberations and obscure examples–much less the evidence to prove they are motivated by race.
    b] you think in a world where law and order types like cops…..who at least have legal accountability now……wouldn’t double-down on abuses post the alternative? Especially when the risks of misperception and the fog of war multiple 1000 fold (you can’t tell who is your friend, foe, and have no mechanism to resolve disputes).

    2) Democide is a comparative argument: http://www.hawaii.ed…ills/MURDER.HTM

    3) How has your life been made worse by The Patriot Act in a tangible way? But we haven’t had anything approaching 9/11 on American soil. Small privacy violations of privacy beats being 6 foot under or having to deal with another 9/11.

    4) Arguments that say the west is the best are racist?
    a)ungrounded overgeneralization
    b] Comparative evidence: As I said, other nations vote with their feet AND they write Constitutions to protect minorities AND model our federalism, which on balance keeps the peace. They model our representative democracy, which while imperfect sure does have more representation and voice and peace than the alternatives. (Thats Diamond & its the Democide cards)

    5) Capitalism isn’t perfect–but comparatively better than a world without institutions and where trade isn’t free (ie its distorted or controlled or dictated).

    Quote
    Saying that you are better than Feudalism IS NOT the hallmark of a great nation.

    My argument is the logical alternative to getting rid of capitalism would likely revert to feudalism. We’ve spent a number of years getting here….to turn the clock back something like 500 years seems silly and counter-productive. There may be alternatives to capitalism but a “burn the baby with the bathwater” strategy of burn it down–sounds like the strategy of an irrate 3 year old rather than an intelligent 30 year old. Its the ultimate Eric Cartman strategy applied writ large across the US. Thomas Jefferson & our founding fathers are better governors and policy makers than Eric Cartman or a 3 year old. Its historically proven.

    5) Legals institutions = predictability to the life of African Americans and other minorities as well–as well as creating accountability and justice in terms of institutions. The alternative is Somalia and Rwanda. When the rule of law isn’t taken seriously, life implodes–and undermines everything you hold dear. Thats a net turn to your argument.

    6) Determinism in your argument blows.
    a) Determinism = command and control–which justifies, rationalizes, and perpetuates dehumanization of all a races (that means we turn and subsume your impacts jack!)
    b] And it coops your alternative–if its deterministic–we have no hope of changing (even if we burn it all down literally or metaphorically)

    7) Ill calculated foreign policy by the US isn’t a justification for burning it all down its either a justification for:
    a) Not doing that again (ie banning that foreign policy)
    b] keeping foreign affairs more accountable
    c) I would make the argument that our foreign policy has gotten better over time.
    d) Plus, we did stop the world from having Hitler evicerate the world with human ovens (aka concentration camps). And minorities specifically benefited from that because thats who Hitler was after
    e) and the loose nukes transition outweighs
    f) FYI: I’m saying prolif bad….specifically prolif to rogue entites which can’t be deterred, have no experience with handling nuclear weapons, and are in a massive fog of war due to chaos/anarchy (the world as we know it imploding).

    8) Romanticism of other cultures.
    a) that takes out your alternative or the hope of it solving
    b] it indicts your claims as racist & stereotypical–this solves back any latent links to racism (particularly your claims and assertions about the West is the Best “data”).

    9) This isn’t an argument “Clap. Clap. Clap. Old white guy with no understanding of the human psyche makes generic arguments about anarchy being bad.” I’m using historical data of human psychology over time. A world without some institutional check leads to abuses–humans like security, power, and freedom–thats maslow and every psychologist since the beginning of time. We need institutions to resolve disputes and provide institutional accountability–we need a process and institution of justice to provide legitimacy, authority, and justice. Vigilantes and lynch mobs have generally proven totally incabable of providing just accountability in the way that the US government has.

    10) This is where your determinism goes astray:
    Quote
    That chaos is going on in places like Mexico, Venezuela, and Cuba solely because the US has fucked them up so hard. Why do you think South America is socialist?

    They made choices. The movement leaders and the people. They made decisions all along the way. Thats like saying “his dad ignoring him lead me to take drugs and go to jail” or any other alternative method of not accepting responsibility for individual choice.

    11) What wars beyond Vietnam are you contesting? And your alternative to the US not going to war is either a middle east global dictator, an italian global dictator, a Japanese global dictator (or at least over the US), and/or a Hitler global dictator. Take your pick. I’ll take US imperialism X 100 over any of those alternatives.

    * Given that I’m not very versed in this debate topic–I’m not in a position to really make a full historical analysis of the multi-dimensional issues at play here (i.e. the ways in which our Latin American policy might have kept peace in other ways). But see also 9 & 11 above.

  7. compassioninpolitics / Nov 27 2013 7:56 pm

    Sorry: I added this in response to ALEC:

    ALEC isn’t government. And saying ALEC isn’t an argument. And a world of ALEC is still probably better than anarchy & lose nukes & ever present vigilantism & begger thy neighbor rule enforcement by lynch mob. Rolling the clock back to the early 1900’s (or rather the 1500’s) is a terrible idea for minorities….for everyone.

    I also added this:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Romantic_racism
    (there are much better cards out, however)

  8. compassioninpolitics / Nov 27 2013 11:00 pm

    There is unconscious racism. That doesn’t mean you burn everything to the ground. The LA Riots and the Kent state incident indicate that it doesn’t solve and actually reifies the power of elites.

    Two key issues stand in the way of burning everything to the ground solving conscious or unconscious racism:
    1) History & human psychology

    2) Incentives/Deterrent/Norming Effect

    The impact is vigilante justice, lynch mobs, and loose nukes. This makes mad max and anarchy look like childplay. It also makes the Antebellum South look like child play.

    Your alternative leaves us powerless in the face of the rise of Hitler, both in the past and in the future. The DA to that is every impact you are claiming and more (i.e. racism and dehumanization across all races–not just one).

    And the arc of history is toward justice. Certainly institutional problems exist in terms of sentencing (mandatory minimums), privatization of prisons, and various parts of the drug war are challenging–but those can be reformed. If human choice created them, human choice can.

    The determinism & essentialism this argument is built on–is disturbing–and would risk undermining everything we cherish (aka dehumanization) about society both as majorities and minorities.

  9. compassioninpolitics / Nov 28 2013 5:09 am

    AT: Prisons are slavery

    1) No. Have you seen Roots or that new movie? You work in prison because it costs $40k + to keep you there. Thats called justice.

    2) If you’re innocent–there might be parallels, but see #1.

    3) “Drug related crimes” the problem with this argument is it fails to understand what the affects of addiction to drugs beyond marajuana are. We easily essentialize all drug addiction to the harms of marajuan and futher essentilize it to college kids who smoke on the weekend. Meth is bad stuff….it will mess you up. Heroin is bad stuff….it will mess you up. And ther are a number of other drugs that fall into this category.

    4) Your argument increasingly looks a lot like a counteplan like:

    a) invest in mental health services for addicts

    b] invest in rehabilitation

    c) legalize it

    d) drug courts

    e) change drug sentancing policies and/or mandatory minimums

    f) ban racial profiling or ban racial profiling in the drug war

    g) change the way we work with private prisons

    h) anything else thats the root cause of why the drug war has problems

    Your alternative is capitalism, but with no rules that the progressives instituted that checked corporate abuses (see the Jungle, etc…). Thats like cutting off your nose despite your face.

  10. compassioninpolitics / Nov 29 2013 2:31 am

    I’m going to echo the argument from Feldsy:

    1) The Zizek letter of the law against itself quote is kind of interesting. He cites MLK as his historical example.

    2) I don’t have the advantage of seeing this author run, so there are likely better quotes, but he’s a Rorty fan:

    Abstract theorizing bad. The perm acts as an ideological and practical bridge–its the only and best hope for change. McClean 2001
    ( David E. McClean, Lecturer in Philosophy, Rutgers U.,, The Cultural Left and the Limits of Social Hope, Presented at the 2001 Annual Conference of the Society for the Advancement of American Philosophyhttp://www.american-…vid_mcclean.htm )
    Quote
    Leftist American culture critics might put their considerable talents to better use if they bury some of their cynicism about America’s social and political prospects and help forge public and political possibilities in a spirit of determination to, indeed, achieve our country – the country of Jefferson and King; the country of John Dewey and Malcom X; the country of Franklin Roosevelt and Bayard Rustin, and of the later George Wallace and the later Barry Goldwater. To invoke the words of King, and with reference to the American society, the time is always ripe to seize the opportunity to help create the “beloved community,” one woven with the thread of agape into a conceptually single yet diverse tapestry that shoots for nothing less than a true intra-American cosmopolitan ethos, one wherein both same sex unions and faith-based initiatives will be able to be part of the same social reality, one wherein business interests and the university are not seen as belonging to two separate galaxies but as part of the same answer to the threat of social and ethical nihilism. We who fancy ourselves philosophers would do well to create from within ourselves and from within our ranks a new kind of public intellectual who has both a hungry theoretical mind and who is yet capable of seeing the need to move past high theory to other important questions that are less bedazzling and “interesting” but more important to the prospect of our flourishing – questions such as “How is it possible to develop a citizenry that cherishes a certain hexis, one which prizes the character of the Samaritan on the road to Jericho almost more than any other?” or “How can we square the political dogma that undergirds the fantasy of a missile defense system with the need to treat America as but one member in a community of nations under a “law of peoples?”
    The new public philosopher might seek to understand labor law and military and trade theory and doctrine as much as theories of surplus value; the logic of international markets and trade agreements as much as critiques of commodification, and the politics of complexity as much as the politics of power (all of which can still be done from our arm chairs.) This means going down deep into the guts of our quotidian social institutions, into the grimy pragmatic details where intellectuals are loathe to dwell but where the officers and bureaucrats of those institutions take difficult and often unpleasant, imperfect decisions that affect other peoples’ lives, and it means making honest attempts to truly understand how those institutions actually function in the actual world before howling for their overthrow commences. This might help keep us from being slapped down in debates by true policy pros who actually know what they are talking about but who lack awareness of the dogmatic assumptions from which they proceed, and who have not yet found a good reason to listen to jargon-riddled lectures from philosophers and culture critics with their snobish disrespect for the so-called “managerial class.”

    Heres more bio information on the author: http://www.polinitic…tdrmcclean.html

  11. compassioninpolitics / Nov 29 2013 2:31 am

    “Prison is slavery.”

    1) No. Have you seen Roots or that new movie? You work in prison because it costs $40k + to keep you there. Thats called justice.

    2) If you’re innocent–there might be parallels, but see #1.

    3) “Drug related crimes” the problem with this argument is it fails to understand what the affects of addiction to drugs beyond marajuana are. We easily essentialize all drug addiction to the harms of marajuan and futher essentilize it to college kids who smoke on the weekend. Meth is bad stuff….it will mess you up. Heroin is bad stuff….it will mess you up. And ther are a number of other drugs that fall into this category.

    4) Your argument increasingly looks a lot like a counteplan like:
    a) invest in mental health services for addicts
    b] invest in rehabilitation
    c) legalize it
    d) drug courts
    e) change drug sentancing policies and/or mandatory minimums
    f) ban racial profiling or ban racial profiling in the drug war
    g) change the way we work with private prisons
    h) anything else thats the root cause of why the drug war has problems

    Your alternative is capitalism, but with no rules that the progressives instituted that checked corporate abuses (see the Jungle, etc…). Thats like cutting off your nose despite your face.

    Side argument–a little overtagged perhaps…..

    Prison problem creates positive movements to solve racism and intersectional oppression. Davis in ’98
    (Angela Davis is a former political prisoner, long-time activist, educator, and author who has devoted her life to struggles for social justice. Masked Racism: Reflections on the Prison Industrial Complex Source: http://colorlines.co…al_complex.html )

    The emergence of a U.S. prison industrial complex within a context of cascading conservatism marks a new historical moment, whose dangers are unprecedented. But so are its opportunities. Considering the impressive number of grassroots projects that continue to resist the expansion of the punishment industry, it ought to be possible to bring these efforts together to create radical and nationally visible movements that can legitimize anti-capitalist critiques of the prison industrial complex. It ought to be possible to build movements in defense of prisoners’ human rights and movements that persuasively argue that what we need is not new prisons, but new health care, housing, education, drug programs, jobs, and education. To safeguard a democratic future, it is possible and necessary to weave together the many and increasing strands of resistance to the prison industrial complex into a powerful movement for social transformation.

  12. compassioninpolitics / Nov 29 2013 2:32 am

    How many Africans have undergrad degrees? Masters? PhD? over time?
    How many Africans earn $25k to $28k or more?

    And certainly how many African Americans are in poverty based on a meaningful definition of the term?
    I’m going to throw this chart out there (not sure what its based on). Poverty down from 20% to 10%
    http://povertynewsbl…y-level_21.html

    Pre-empt: poverty measures that highlight 2008 (ie focus on) aren’t entirely meaningful, because that spike distorts the trend. Its like measuring my energy level at 7:30am in the morning and projecting it out.

    I realize this is the oppression olympics–but its the natural extrapolation of the tenor of the argument–and its a way to step back and see big picture.
    And not to stack oppression versus oppression, but sometimes you have to make priorities:
    • how about Africans in Africa that live on less than $2 a day (something like $700-ish a year).
    • how about the untouchables in India, who are at the bottom of the caste system?

    * Population explosion to some extent certainly distort stats on both sides (ie in a world of greater population–more people are probably going to be in prison).

  13. compassioninpolitics / Nov 29 2013 2:38 am

    I’m taking this from earlier in the thread…..and I hope I’m not taking it out of context.

    Quote
    “I think Wilderson’s kritik only applies in the US”

    Yes, but the black bodies argument (a particular kind of universalism) shouldn’t be predicated on geography/culture/location.

    That would seem to deny its very determinist foundations.

    To the extent his argument is about capitalism–which is a cultural phenomena–it would seem that
    there is an underlying tension.

    The more think the argument is a bit like Schopenhaur, except applied at a cultural/societal level and with race as the core theme.
    1) All is trash and no hope (notice he projects this forward, universalizes humanity (psychology, motivation, and action), and universalizes top-down solutions). Thats a huge burden of proof. A we have 2 or 3% risk of solving would seem to (mostly) escape this problem.
    2) We should opt for a final solution.

    The question is that final solution might actually kill us.

    ———————-

    What is this argument? How does it relate to the failure of 1964?

    Quote
    the failure of the 64 civil rights act to solve for the fungibility of the black body.

    Black fungibility will exist post-alt. Its the black body after all.

    Black fungibility? Isn’t that just a way of saying race is socially constructed? If so, that would seem to hedge against his determinist & no hope arguments in a BIG, BIG, BIG way.

  14. compassioninpolitics / Nov 29 2013 2:39 am

    Lucas, please resume eating turkey and Thanksgiving leftovers (Your words and/or crow would be nice as well)

    Length is not equal to argument. And, my computer had been having problems. But more importantly….he’s focusing on the wrong thing. And you’re not really looking at this from a lynch-pin argument perspective of what the aff has to win to make this a viable argument.

    Racism bad is but one level of an at least 3 to 5 level debate (two and three below are interrelated). If I win the alternative debate its game over. Also, if I win one of the major access to the core of their belief systems–its game over.

    1) Racism bad & happening how. Its all pervasive (there is no hope–not even 1%).
    2) Determinism
    3) Hope
    4) Essentialism
    5) History of Institutions Helping (any of which is a reason–there is hope).
    6) the Alternative

    If I win the alternative debate (aka turn) or win big any of 2 through 5, I can win the debate–or seriously undercut the assumptions/rationale/logic of the K. It fundamentally poisons their ideology, worldview, and framework. It also fundamentally poisons their alternative.

    In a world of determinism–robot and animal life would be the norm. Its fundamentally flawed as a philosophy thats an ideological cul de sac which can justify the worst atrocities in history. Its an independent reason to reject this ideological hackery.

    Legal institutions provide the option of accountability……a world without structures provides no hope. The constitution and separation of powers and federalism checks those institutions from getting out of hand (aka decentralized power). You strip us of those opportunities.

    I took out the internal link to prisons being slavery–at least to the extent that it was claimed.

    Also, the essentialism and over generalization arguments–provide space for hope–provide space for choice–provide space for change.

    I can concede the its getting worse part (racism, prisons)…..and say…..its still better than guaranteed racist elite backlash, loose nukes, lynch mobs, and anarchy. In the world of all that power, racism, slavery, and dehumanization would run rampant.

    Romantic racism–racism that alternatives to primacy are viable is just as problematic as any latent racism. (I realize I need to articulate this argument better and it probably won’t get me quite the traction I would like to if it came down to the wire).

    * I will revisit some arguments from earlier which need to be dealt with

    ** I chose not to deal with the responses to the card arguments–first, because I didn’t need them. I really only added them to the thread so that other people could research them. second, its pretty much conjecture on both sides unless we have the original documents or at least the cards that are represented. I’ve never read the originals–I thought they still added to the marketplace of ideas on the topic.

  15. compassioninpolitics / Nov 29 2013 2:39 am

    Quote: “You can say social construction if thats how you understand it. But it is ontological, which is deeper than the social.”

    Social + ontological doesn’t make it determinist.
    They aren’t mutually exclusive.
    I have an ontology, but also my identity is socially constructed by myself and others.

    Fungibility usually deals with flexibility and changability….meaning non-determinist.
    You can’t have it both ways. Your arguments for “no hope” or “history always being the same or worse oppression” fall apart.

    Its a double bind (I think).

  16. compassioninpolitics / Nov 29 2013 2:40 am

    I’m making a pretty nuanced argument against his claims. I’m not sure if you posted before I finished my latest draft of the post before you–I think it more clearly & distinctly points to the holes in the ideology which Wilderson proposes.

    I think racism is bad. I think institutional racism & unconscious racism are bad. Those are fairly undeniable–I don’t see a point in having a racism good/bad or increasing/decreasing debate. Thus, the real questions are:
    1) what worldview will we accept?
    2) what alternative will we accept?

    I can concede tons of the K and still say vote neg or reject large parts of it.

    I don’t see why CRA 1964 made things worse for African-Americans–or with the exception of Vietnam anything bad happened till Reagan.

    And no alternative except burn it down has been offered. Constant criticism isn’t a real alternative—-or its a copp out–I can do both. (although admittedly probably can’t win a real perm debate). Oh….actually my bad–that alt. still links to the ideology/worldview DA above.

    Theres one more ideology DA. The US system is based on Aristotle and it allows for middle ground and mixing of ideas. This allows middle of the road and balancing solutions–ones which don’t have an inflexible and unchangeable fundamentalist bent. This is my Wilderson flattens reality & both destroys, ignores, or distorts the options for alternatives. His hyper-skepticism should never be used as the basis for an attempt to make the world a better place to lives. Its flawed at its core.

    Also, the fact that Wilderson admits that the US system hasn’t been unrelenting–suggests that there are cracks in the systems. His nostalgia for a time when things were better before Reagan or before Vietnam or before the Drug War–points to historical points in time where we could have less racism without burning down the world around us–along with the majority and the minority. That version of reality….that version of hope is the one which is the basis for hope and change–to change, reform, and reconfigure a world better for us and minorities–beyond racism, dehumanization, and slavery. Only an institutional solution provides that.

    * I will have a response by 9pm eastern, 8pm central to an earlier RickRoss post.

  17. compassioninpolitics / Nov 29 2013 2:40 am

    I apologize for not making my deadline….sue me….its Thanksgiving.

    I’m going back to #41 here……

    Stereotyping or no stereotyping….its over-generalization. Over-generalization means there is space for good cops. Cops that don’t kill minorities 24/7. I didn’t read that evidence in your front lines. There is space for hope. Your hyperbolic language denies the real and genuine sacrifie of cops–and African American cops at that. Suggests you have an agenda rather than a “fair and balanced” approach. This alone is enough to no link your argument–and create a DA.

    Your overt versus covert racism distinction doesn’t really make all that much difference. And you can always say X was covert racism almost in the same way that you can almost always say X was covertly selfish. Motive isn’t particularly accessible.

    It doesn’t matter–the alt makes the overt & covert situation worse.

    Quote
    Why aren’t ALL minorities in jail? because this is NOT overt racism as you continually keep failing to see.

    This is the definition of a “just so” argument. You can’t prove the level of covert racism you claim exists–period. Cops aren’t all racists–and perhaps even in their racism they still act to protect African Americans. (ie the racist doctor who saves African american lives or creates a vaccine for diseases in Africa or which occur among the African american community still is saving African Americans)–and possibly making life better for those individuals.

    Continuum–how many acts a day? an hour? a minute? does an overt racist make? how about a cover racist?
    There is a large continuum between a 2 pack a day smoker…..and a once a week or once a month smoker. Same goes for racism.
    And by definition–if people don’t know they are covertly racist–by definition they are probably doing good stuff to along the way–that makes the world better or even makes the world better for minorities.

    The racist (overt or covert–you can pick) teacher who educates an African american who goes on to get a middle class job, or to be a teacher, or to be a civil servant–makes the world better.

    You are looking at individual points in time–not numbers over time. By your definition, we have no way to access poverty–thats net worse but it also mutes all your poverty arguments. This kind of perfectionism–results in paralysis and a less informed populous. (I cited a trend–you don’t have any evidence that your generic link links to my specific data–ie agency X has data which not only is skewed, but skewed to the point of being totally useless).

    I’m pretty sure I can concede this:
    Quote
    I understand this point. And all this means is that it is up to white people to be allies. To reform the system so that the concrete manifestations of the system’s violence on the ground does not continually occur against the black body. This would prove the Wilderson alt wrong. I totally agree, but its just the sad truth that we aren’t fucking there yet. I appreciate Wilderson’s honesty, but I don’t want a race war.

    1) Democracy is a linear DA. You don’t have greater democracy in chaos, anarchy, or. The impact to democracy is the democide argument.
    Democracy is never going to be perfect. But I would prefer our current state–to one where 80 to 99.5% didn’t have a voice.

    2) Also, I don’t know where on the flow the historical AND future hitler as a turn to your slavery & racism arguments was answered. This subsumes all the slavery arguments you are making by 10,000x. The world would be in slavery.

    3) i can run a federalism DA too. Calebresi–peace, democracy, freedom. War = metaphorical hell, slavery, dehumanization, and racism.

    Dude, leaving your host country is your choice unless there is a genocide or mass exodus event (ie 1,000s flee all at once). Most of these people still have a middle class in their country OR they leave middle class options to come here. The “capitalism made me do it” excuse was already played out in 2008. Yeah, thats right I called your whitewashing tantamount to banker BS!

    Thats the only warrant I need:
    Quote
    The alt demands transition violence.

    You’re conceeding the core of the argument. I don’t need a warrant. If I assert the US is key to the global economy and you don’t fundamentally contest it, its true.

    Also, my warrants are history and human psychology. Just like Economics 101, you don’t need formal logical syllogisms to see the beautiful simplicity of the argument.

    You don’t have a single defense of the transition or the alternative–thats why my historical and human psychology warrants get full weight. They’re mostly uncontested. You have to prove the world of your alt would be better for race, slavery, and violence–and in each and every case you’ve come up with nothing, nada, zip.

    Quote
    All the political philosophy doesn’t work for the black body in the US

    Thats a hyper-generalized claim without a warrant.

    That begs the question of what “works for” means.

    Heres the ultimate gut check–which proves the over-generalization, hyperbole–and the idea that Wildersons’ assessment is simply too pessimistic–and thus 100% bankrupt as a singular philosophy to apply writ large:
    You don’t have evidence that 100% of african americans reject 100% of western philosophy.
    You don’t have evidence that 100% of african americans have never had government or a white person do anything good for them.
    You don’t have evidence that 100% of african americans that government policy “doesn’t work”
    Did any African Americans want Hitler to win so he could set up gas chambers in the states?
    Did anyone want another global power putting us into slavery as an entire nation or entire world?
    Why would we do the alternative when we only risk turning hyperbolically labeled slaves into real world slaves x100 due to the global nature of the problem created by the alternative?

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