As UPI puts it:
According to a scathing New York Post preview, The Triple Package: Why Groups Rise and Fall in America argues that some cultural and ethnic groups -- primarily Jews, Indians, Chinese, Iranians, Lebanese-Americans, Nigerians, Cuban exiles and Mormons -- have innate qualities that make them more likely to succeed in life.Innate? Really? I bet they don't say it's innate. It sounds a lot more like a discussion of culture, notably the immigrant spirit that has been observed and praised throughout American history. Hooray for the hardworking immigrants. That's an old and easily defensible position, but it's not going to be a bestseller unless you package it to stir people up.
“That certain groups do much better in America than others -- as measured by income, occupational status, test scores and so on -- is difficult to talk about,” write Chua and [Jed] Rubenfeld. “In large part, this is because the topic feels so racially charged.”So they are charging up their book with the racial controversy. Hey, this might be racist!
Though it doesn't hit shelves until February 4, the book has already generated the inevitable media discussion.So I'm not able to buy it and check my theory. The trumped-up racial controversy will stew for weeks before anyone can produce the actual text, and Chua and Rubenfeld will appear everywhere, because they must respond to all the terrible things people are saying about them and because they are a glamorous, gorgeous couple. And it's exactly what mainstream media will appreciate right now: a diversion from the Obama-hurting subject of the health-care debacle. And this book helps the Obama forces in 2 major ways: 1. It amps up our endless, ongoing Conversation About Race In America, and 2. It bolsters the cause for liberalizing immigration.
Extra points to Chua and Rubenfeld for throwing in the Mormons. When they were writing the book, they didn't know Mitt Romney wasn't going to win the presidency. If he had, how fabulously prescient this book would have been. In any case, Mormons will want to buy this book, and so will those who have an aversion to Mormons. And the presence of a religious group in Chua and Rubenfeld set of groups that succeed will serve as a major weapon as they fight against the accusations — the accusations they invited (invented!) — that they're a couple of racists.
Enjoy the flummery!