December 10, 2015

"But Scalia’s arguments became quite clumsy, and raised some eyebrows, when he suggested that maybe the University of Texas needs fewer minority students..."

"... and he suggested that many of them find that the classes are 'too fast' for them at such high-rank institutions, and thus prefer to go to lower-ranked, 'slower-track schools.'"

From Lyle Denniston's description of the oral argument in Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin yesterday.
Garre, the university’s lawyer, responded by reminding Scalia that the Supreme Court had rejected that very type of argument a dozen years ago in the last major ruling to uphold a college affirmative action plan, for the University of Michigan Law School.  “Frankly,” Garre said, “I don’t think the solution to the problems with student body diversity can be to set up a system in which not only are minorities going to separate schools, they’re going to inferior schools. . . .  Now is not the time and this is not the case to roll back student body diversity in America.”

... [Garre's] comment seemed directed at Justice Kennedy, in the hope that Kennedy would not be comfortable casting the decisive vote that ended affirmative action on American campuses. If those were his thoughts, the hearing provided some foundation for them.
Those who are focused on Justice Kennedy should remember that he dissented in the University of Michigan Law School case? There, he wrote:
If universities are given the latitude to administer programs that are tantamount to quotas, they will have few incentives to make the existing minority admissions schemes transparent and protective of individual review. The unhappy consequence will be to perpetuate the hostilities that proper consideration of race is designed to avoid. The perpetuation, of course, would be the worst of all outcomes. Other programs do exist which will be more effective in bringing about the harmony and mutual respect among all citizens that our constitutional tradition has always sought. They, and not the program under review here, should be the model, even if the Court defaults by not demanding it.
Kennedy's questions yesterday were focused on the procedural status of the case, which looked to him like "the same case" the Court had sent back in 2013 when it sent the parties back to the lower court with instructions to look more deeply into something that I assume was highly significant to Justice Kennedy. The case did not go back to the district court for the development of evidence but only to the Court of Appeals which purported to look more deeply into the legal question. Yesterday, there was much discussion of sending the case back down again, but Kennedy was left saying the university “would not put in more evidence than we have now.”

ADDED: By pointing at the mismatch argument crudely, Scalia gave supporters of affirmative action a lavish gift.

71 comments:

Michael K said...

Hysteria is being created anticipating that the Court might roll back affirmative action slightly.

Anonymous said...

Why on earth is it controversial to say that admitting minority students to demanding, fast-paced institutions for which their previous education has not prepared them may be a disservice both to the students and to the institutions? This has the flavor of religious dogma, or perhaps of tribal tabu, forbidding the acknowledgment of what can readily be seen regardless of the human cost of not acknowledging it.

MayBee said...

Yesterday on CNN the argument against what Scalia said was that Sonny Hostin, a female black former prosecutor, found it offensive.

Brando said...

The real controversy should be why racial diversity is even a legitimate goal for an educational institution or government program (which the taxpayer-funded schools are). "Achieving racial diversity" is not the same thing as "ensuring no racial discrimination" and in fact the two are often at odds with one another. The fact that the Court ever bought into this "diversity is a legitimate goal" nonsense is shameful.

And Scalia is right--it benefits no one at all if a person is upjumped into a school or program that they simply cannot compete in, only to fail out or emerge at the bottom. It hurts the "beneficiary" himself because he has an (often expensive) failure rather than a chance to succeed elsewhere, it hurts the candidates who might otherwise have been accepted, it hurts the other students who have less competitive pressure from underqualified peers, and it hurts the institution itself for all of those reasons.

The racialists have pushed this nonsense (which interestingly sprang from a Nixon program) and its long failures have only frustrated them into finding new hidden demons such as "white privilege" (which they cannot identify) or "systemic racism" (which they also cannot identify) and partly explains the current campus hysteria. If three generations of racialist programs have left you as poorly off as before, what is a race-obsessed leftist to do?

MayBee said...

If we took out the idea that these people are minorities, isn't what Scalia said undoubtedly true? That students who don't qualify for more challenging universities won't do as well there?
Don't the drop out rates more or less prove this to be true?

Of course, the other answer is to make the university easier, to accommodate the less qualified students of whatever race. The question becomes is it better to do that in the name of diversity? Or is it better for students to go to the schools for which they are qualified?

(I do realize this is painting with a broad brush. Many students who are denied acceptance to UT would do very well there, I'm sure. That's the way things are with crazy college admissions these days.)

Tank said...

More bizarro world. Up is down. No truth allowed. Of course a student with SAT's 250 points below the average at Harvard will have no trouble keeping up. It's outrageous to even suggest it. Na na na.

This should be a ten minute case if the Court was allowed to be honest.

State schools may not discriminate on the basis of race. If you don't like it, repeal the 14th Amd and see how that works out.

Renee said...

Individuals who are admitted to an educational institution, but can't keep up with his/her fellow classmates will only drop out. Rather see anyone suceed with a two year degree, then be saddled with debt and no degree. It's been a while, but it felt the public university I attended just wanted any warm body that wasn't white for its diversity. It is one of the legitimate concerns of the college protests, but pretty much my only one I agree with. We need to do something about the retention rates of minorities and more diversity positions in a college administration isn't the answer.

Sebastian said...

Richard Sander had a good piece at popecenter.org the other day, with useful references to the empirical literature. Scalia may have read it. The mismatch argument is now pretty well established. (One of the related papers, readers of this blog will be interested to know, suggests that in terms of a basic academic index all black students at UW law school fall below the first percentile of whites.) Side issue: Why are institutions other than UT Austin not objecting to that one institution trying to grab all the most talented minority students, leaving them with the less qualified? Does "diversity" matter more at the flagship campus?

BDNYC said...

"... casting the decisive vote that ended affirmative action on American campuses ..."

Is that what's at stake here? Or is the case just about affirmative action at public universities?

Anonymous said...

Who said anything about separate schools? The state school I went to was integrated; as far as I know, they all are.

Amadeus 48 said...

SJWs continue their mastery of the internet. They oversee the continuing stream of discourse that seeks to blacken the names of conservative thinkers, accusing them of being enslaved to the dogmas of the racist past and being niggaredly with justice in all its forms. SJWs do not feel safe with such ideas as "America is a melting pot" and "If you work hard you can get ahead in America". They want society to call a spade a spade...or maybe not. They work overtime to ensure that no slight goes unrecorded and that their experiences are not invalidated. All hail our new SJW masters!
How many microaggressions can you count in this comment? Come on, garage and ARM, you can do it!
Hint--I got 24.

MayBee said...

This treatment of Scalia's argument disheartens me.
It's just more shouting down of the non-progressive voice. An attempt to make a completely normal thought be seen as disgusting.

It's this kind of treatment that is leading Trump to be so popular (which also disheartens me). Can't this country learn that not listening to the opinion of the "non-cool kids" isn't working for us? That it isn't enough to just point and yell "racist" or "war on women"? It isn't enough to just twist someone's words into the least charitable interpretation and then trying to make them ashamed of it? This tactic is really hurting our country.

Basil said...

There is no evidence that diversity has an educational or any other benefit, other than as a recruiting tool for the Democrat Party. Hence, it is merely assumed to be beneficial, without evidence and pushed forward regardless of the harm to the nation, the economy and the body politic. You know, this sounds just like global warming. A theory that explains everything and that is not provably right or wrong. Which also sounds like Marxism, now that I think about it. Maybe there is a pattern here?

MikeR said...

"I don’t think the solution to the problems with student body diversity can be to set up a system in which not only are minorities going to separate schools, they’re going to inferior schools." Inferior schools? They aren't inferior, they're geared for students with a different set of qualifications. You can call the qualification inferior if you want to be insulting. The schools are just fine, and they are the right schools for that set of qualifications.

Was that actually what was rejected a dozen years ago, or was it a "separate but equal" type of setup where minorities are herded somewhere else as a way of avoiding diversity?

garage mahal said...

Scala is envious if Trump getting all the headlines.

Anonymous said...

"..go to lower-ranked, 'slower-track schools.'"

That is what affirmative action does. Qualified white candidates are rejected and assigned to go to lower-ranked slower-track schools; their places taken by those given racial preferences.

MayBee said...

If it isn't true that students won't flourish at students for which they aren't qualified, why have admissions at all? Why not just entrance through a lottery?

Hagar said...

The public schools will be prevailed upon to do a better job of preparing students when the universities start flunking out the unprepared after the first semester.

Gahrie said...

Scalia wasn't making a new argument, he was discussing one that has been made before.

rhhardin said...

Political correctness works not being allowed to notice things, by way of not being allowed to say them.

So you wind up with lots of unsolvable problems which add to the list of things you are forbidden to notice.

Trump would sweep a lot of these away by restoring notice. Hence his support.

Peter said...

The Supreme Court has twisted logic into a pretzel in justifying Affirmative Action on the basis that it is justified because it benefits the majority, by exposing them to diversity.

Because even if that's true (and how would one prove it?) it may still not be justified if it not only doesn't help but actually harms minorities?

No, because it seems unfortunate that arguments on both sides are swirling around who's helped and who's harmed, as though this were a routine civil case asking for damages.

How difficult could it be to use the text of the 14th Amendment plus civil rights statutes to just close the door on this steaming pile of dishonesty that is Affirmative Action (and why would it even matter that someone will always be able to conjure some convoluted argument to justify race-based discrimination)?

Although if the Court is considering harm, I'd think that if minorities are harmed it would be a harm they chose for themselves if they had the option to go to lower-ranked schools.

Rick said...

he suggested that many [minorities] find that the classes are 'too fast' for them at such high-rank institutions, and thus prefer to go to lower-ranked, 'slower-track schools.'"

Of course the left wingers try to claim he means they need slower paced schools simply because they are minority, but in reality the point is that they need slower schools just like the white and asian kids with the same preparatory background. This is someone high profile and supposedly honest enough for Althouse among others to cite and he still can't help sliming a Justice to further his political preferences.

I remember Connor Friedersdorf going off about not being able to trust some right leaning journalist / blogger because of some slight misstatement, holding that it invalidated referencing him at all. Will Connor or others on the left hold a left wing source to the same standard?

Rick said...

MayBee said...
Yesterday on CNN the argument against what Scalia said was that Sonny Hostin, a female black former prosecutor, found it offensive.


Of course the media is following the student activist crybully tactic of misunderstanding reality in order to claim to be offended by non-controversial remarks. As much as the decent left wants to pretend campus tactics are a few immature students out of control we see them using and supporting the same tactics in their spaces. They just drop the childish screaming and (most importantly) use the tactics as intended against the right rather than against erstwhile allies. When leftists criticize the campus activists for their "tactics" we should all understand they only mean the element of using them against other lefties.

Roy Jacobsen said...

Lickspittle Media hack puts words in conservative jurists mouth. Such a thing is unheard of.

http://www.mediaite.com/online/media-jumps-the-gun-attack-scalia-for-perfectly-reasonable-question/

Laslo Spatula said...

Sarah's mind once again slipped wistfully into the past, to that One Hot Summer in 1957 in Madison County...

"Miss Sarah, do you think there will ever come a time when us Negroes can goes to a White Folks College?

"Oh my wonderful, silly Mandingo: of course not. White people go to white colleges because of their white brains."

"But I has a brain, too."

"Yes, my love, but it is a Negro brain: they are shaped differently."

"Us Negroes have different-shaped brains, Miss Sarah?

"Of course, Mandingo. The Negro brain is smaller than that of a white person: they are flatter, almost like a pancake. Science tells us that."

"Gee, that is a tough break."

"Don't despair, my Mandingo: the Good Lord gave you all the brain you need to be able to do all of your Negro things."

"Negro things, Miss Sarah?"

"Negro things, Mandingo. Like lifting heavy things, and doing simple repetitive chores. Why, negroes could be excellent garbage-men if it weren't for them then taking honest white folks' jobs."

"But I taught myself to read, Miss Sarah."

"Negros can learn to read, but that is only because God wants them to be able to read the Bible some."

"But I read "Moby Dick," Miss Sarah: I understoods it and everything."

"You understood it as much as a Negro possibly can, I know that, my Mandingo. But surely you don't think you read it as well as a white person at a prestigious college?"

"I guess not, Miss Sarah."

"Of course not, my Mandingo. There is the white brain, then the white Retard brain like cousin Ben, the Chink brain and then the Negro brain, And then there are horses and dogs and the like."

"It is good to be smarter than a horse, Miss Sarah."

"Oh, my Mandingo: if you were a horse you'd be a very smart horse indeed...

I am Laslo.

lgv said...

For those that don't know or don't recall. UT has a non-racial policy of accepting students in the top 10% of their high school graduating class. This allowed students from poorer minority dominated schools to get it. The de facto result was a nicely diversified student body without actually looking at race.

But UT wanted to bitterly cling to allowing race to be a factor in admissions. Administrators wanted to maintain control of the process. It's less about diversity than it is about power and control.

PB said...

the challenge is to actually prove that diversity provides positive benefits. We're at the point where we can't just take their word for it. There has to be something measurable, but the only thing they can measure is percentages.

campy said...

"Sonny Hostin, a female black former prosecutor, found it offensive."

Isn't that enough?

Francisco D said...

African Americans are disadvantaged by Affirmative Action in two ways: (1) kids who might do well at a public university are acce[ted at the Ivies where they are competing with elite Asian and Caucasian students, for the most part; (2) Accomplished African Americans who graduate from a prestigious school have their accomplishments diminished by the expectation that Affirmative Actin was the cause of their success.

My Black former brother in law (extremely academically accomplished at Princeton and the U of C Law School) explained this to me 40 years ago when I was a foolish liberal.

chickelit said...

Imagine what the NBA would look like with Affirmative Action.

AlbertAnonymous said...

Scalia's comments were more eloquently stated in the final paragraphs of Justice Thomas' concurring opinion in the first Fisher case. I recommend all to read that opinion. Interestingly, he spends most of the opinion showing how the current arguments made (and accepted by many on the left) for racial discrimination in the name of "diversity" are eerily similar to the arguments previously made (and rejected by the court) for racial discrimination in the name of segregation.

Gahrie said...

By pointing at the mismatch argument crudely, Scalia gave supporters of affirmative action a lavish gift.

Because of course, the manner you make an argument is much more important than the argument itself.

I sometimes wonder that you teach Constitutional law.

But of course, how he makes you feel is much more important than how he makes you think.

damikesc said...

Isn't it a known issue that they keep sending unprepared minorities to schools they are woefully unprepared to succeed in but would've done far better at a lower-tier school?

And why racial diversity is so important is lost on me. A black Progressive and a white Progressive are both tedious bores. Intellectual diversity is something colleges desperately lack.

We'll see if John Roberts lied in his confirmation testimony. "The best way to stop discriminating on the basis of race is to stop discriminating on the basis of race"

Laslo Spatula said...

Sarah's mind once again slipped wistfully into the past, to that One Hot Summer in 1957 in Madison County...

"Miss Sarah, I'm gonna write a book! I figures I don't needs no white college to write a book."

"Oh, Mandingo. That is adorable, you thinking you can write a book and all. What would this book be about?"

"I was thinking I'd write about a Negro who was the only Negro in a small town. He'd live in a tin shack behind the junkyard and he falls in love with a White Woman."

"Mandingo, that sounds a lot like it would be your autobiography."

"No, Miss Sarah: there won't be much about autos in it at all."

"Even if you could write such a book who on Earth would ever want to read it?"

"You wouldn't want to read it, Miss Sarah?"

Of course I'd read it, Mandingo, on account of it being you. But most white folks don't care much to read about Negroes, and most Negroes can't read. So I don't know who would ever read your book."

"Maybe one day, fifty years later maybe, someone would read it to better understand how life was like right now."

"I'm sure people in the future will have better things to do than read a book written by a Negro."

"That makes me sad, Miss Sarah."

"Oh, don't let it discourage you, my Mandingo. If writing a silly little book helps give purpose to your small Negro Life then I say do it."

"I knew you'd support me, Miss Sarah! I knew it!

"Of course, my Mandingo: I want you to be the best little Negro you can possibly be..."

I am Laslo.

Carol said...

The mismatch theory is well supported and has been around a long time. Isn't that sort of evidence allowed in the case? Brown v. Board of Ed put forth all sorts of social & historical evidence that separate schools weren't working. Is that sort of evidence no longer pertinent? Or not allowed because it runs the "wrong" way?

BrianE said...

Justice Scalia is breaking the code of the left, breaking the enforced silence of common sense.
An anecdote that speaks to what Scalia is pointing out.
Our adopted Liberian son's best friend in high school was a Kenyan immigrant family. For obvious reasons they became very close--they both were excellent soccer players.
Not an immigrant family in the typical sense since the father had a PhD in agronomy and his mother was a RN. Stephen was a very bright kid and after high school was accepted at the University of Washington, in a pre-med track leading to the medical school.
Last Christmas, Stephen came to visit us while home on vacation-- we caught up on how his studies were going-- but the discussion became unusually animated as he described the struggles some of the black kids were having at the school and asked me whether I would support a special study center at the school for minority students. This wasn't for Stephen, but he had taken up the cause of other minority students at the school.
I hadn't heard anything about this before, but I assume there was some legislation to create something. I told him that no, the University was selective in its admissions and was designed for students that excelled. These students would be better served going to one of the state colleges, catching up in their studies, and then going back to UW.
He became very angry when I wouldn't agree that these kids deserved a special consideration.
It was sad to see him so agitated and upset as he left. He hasn't stopped by since (he always used to come to our house when he was in town).
I don't think we're doing these kids a favor when we promote them to some of the elite schools when they're not equipped to succeed. I suppose their frustration soon turns to anger which leads to them blaming everyone else for their failure.

Brando said...

Frankly if "diversity" mattered so much they'd be pushing to get more whites and Asians into Howard and Morehouse. The fact that they don't makes it obvious that this was never about "diversity" at all but racial payback.

It's sickening that we've gone from "let's judge each other as individuals and not our races" to "payback time!". None of this will end well.

Eric said...

Scalia could have pointed it out elegantly and would have still gotten nearly the same pushback.

Fernandinande said...

whswhs said...
This has the flavor of religious dogma, or perhaps of tribal tabu, forbidding the acknowledgment of what can readily be seen regardless of the human cost of not acknowledging it.


All education policy and discussion in the US is dominated by religious beliefs. The major religious belief is "blank slate" (those kids will get smarter when they're motivated to, or if they're around smart people). The mantra of this religion is "failing schools".

Trigger warning: NYT:
Diversity Makes You Brighter

That's the NYT, so of course when they say "brigther" they mean something else, in this case it means "more distrustful" (same authors):

Where other means have failed at stemming the growth of financial bubbles, it turns out that in a diverse market, traders scrutinize a sale more, less likely to accept a price that may be inflated. In a homogenous[sic] market, traders trust more, setting the stage to pay more than what the true value is based off a kind of herd mentality.

Fernandinande said...

whswhs said...
This has the flavor of religious dogma, or perhaps of tribal tabu, forbidding the acknowledgment of what can readily be seen regardless of the human cost of not acknowledging it.


All education policy and discussion in the US is dominated by religious beliefs. The major religious belief is "blank slate" (those kids will get smarter when they're motivated to, or if they're around smart people). The mantra of this religion is "failing schools".

Trigger warning: NYT:
Diversity Makes You Brighter

That's the NYT, so of course when they say "brigther" they mean something else, in this case it means "more distrustful" (same authors):

Where other means have failed at stemming the growth of financial bubbles, it turns out that in a diverse market, traders scrutinize a sale more, less likely to accept a price that may be inflated. In a homogenous[sic] market, traders trust more, setting the stage to pay more than what the true value is based off a kind of herd mentality.

Fernandinande said...

MayBee said...
If it isn't true that students won't flourish at students for which they aren't qualified, why have admissions at all? Why not just entrance through a lottery?


Here's what Good People do when they need a doctor or a plumber or a lawyer or a car mechanic: they pick some random person out of the phone book.

Hagar said...

Much of the Affirmative Action nonsense is due to regarding "going to college" as the ticket of admission to a privileged class rather than preparation for doing some useful work.

Notice all the articles about "he/she was the first in his/her family to go to college" with no mention if his/her major was "Women's Studies" or Theoretical Physics.

mccullough said...

"Inferior schools". -- what a fucking snob that lawyer is. Was it Ted Cruz?

We're not even close to fully formed as 18 year olds. Plenty of students go to "inferior" colleges and begin to excel. And some students at "superior schools" plateau.

This is no different than college athletics. Aaron Rodgers had no Division I scholarship offers out of high school. He played at a junior college and greatly improved. Then he transferred to Univeristy of California, an "inferior" football school compared to Alabama or Ohio State.

Would Aaron Rodgers have done as well if he had been the starting QB at USC his first year out of high school?




Steve M. Galbraith said...

Is it the best interest of a student - regardless or race - to be admitted to a school where her or she doesn't have the skills or qualifications to keep up and drops out? or is better if they go to another school where they can get a degree?

Is the idea here to help the students or to feel good about the makeup of the university?

Even asking this question is forbidden.

It's odd that if you think it would be better for a group of black students (not all; just those admitted without having the qualifications) to go to a different school because they have a better chance of succeeding that this is racist.

But sending them to a university where they'll struggle and drop out is really caring for them.

Crazy world.

Gusty Winds said...

Is the reason that all these students are freaking out is that the minority diversity effort hasn't really produced much benefit for them? It makes for a good picture for the University and its administration. They can pat themselves on the back, give each other a reach around, and say how much they care about the well being of minority students.

But if the kid drops out without finishing the degree, he, or she, or xe, or ze has financial debt with no degree.

And like Alcoholics Anonymous, once you leave, nobody cares anyway. When did we become so filled with posturing, false concern, and pitchforked righteous indignation.

Achilles said...

Progrsseives force poor minorities into a public school system they control. They segregate that system. The minorities end up with poor educational outcomes.

They make it so the only way minorities can get into college is by the patronage of the progressives. Instead of focusing on the shit schools that disenfranchise kids they force through a racial spoils system.

Scalia points this out. We want to improve the school system and give minorities a better education. Progressives want to keep minorities in failing public schools. The Progressive's position cannot survive even minimal scrutiny. Inevitably they bleat racist! and attack our motives. It is all they have.

Most progressives aren't horrible people. They just haven't thought about these things.

Richard Dolan said...

I doubt that Scalia's choice of words will make much difference. One of the underlying problems for the UT side in a case like this is that those inclined to view affirmative action skeptically -- and that is clearly a majority of the Court -- is also inclined to view skeptically the honesty, candor and trustworthiness of university administrators and academics on this topic. Kennedy's comments in all of these affirmative action cases have that idea running through them, even though he is never so gauche as to say it expressly.

At the argument yesterday, everyone was dancing around the numbers problem -- i.e., how does UT measure success in generating the 'diverse perspectives' that supposedly enrich the educational experience other than by counting admitted students by race? And if it's an exercise in counting by race with the central objective of increasing the numbers, how is that different from a quota? That problem (mostly for the UT side; it was a point for the Fisher side) became even more obvious when the discussion touched, briefly, on the 'critical mass' justification for racial preferences -- Garre saying that there's only about 400 black students at UT Austin, with Scalia's come-back: so 600 will provide the 'critical mass'? That was all about just getting the numbers up, and when all else fails to achieve it (as all else seems to be failing), then a quota-that-dare-not-speak-its-name is what you need. Those who are skeptical of the honesty of university administrators on this topic are unlikely to accept a lot of double-talk on something like that. Alito especially was focused on the impossibility of measuring what the UT side said would count as success. That was another way of suggesting, politely, that the 'diverse perspectives' talk was just so much glib blather designed to hide rather than reveal the basic realities.

The case might well have been different if the UT side -- and it's not just the Texans but the apologists for affirmative action generally -- hadn't convinced everyone except the true believers that they will say or do whatever it takes to achieve the outcome they want. Unfortunately social engineers are like other engineers -- they focus on whatever works to get to where there want to go. Alas, what is a feature for civil engineers becomes a bug for the social ones.



MayBee said...

mccullough- good point about Aaron Rodgers.

I enjoy listening to the Adam Carolla podcast. I have often heard him discuss with fellow comics how damaging it is to get your "big break" too early in your career. Comedians get excited to get an early invite to one of the big NYC or LA comedy clubs, but if they don't have their act honed, that's their big break wasted. Sometimes it's better to toil in the smaller venues, where failure isn't so damaging. You have a chance to learn and *then* move forward.

Why would educational opportunity be so different than just about everything else in life?

Peter said...

"he suggested that many [minorities] find that the classes are 'too fast' for them at such high-rank institutions, and thus prefer to go to lower-ranked, 'slower-track schools.'"

Solution: speed limits. Should any class be so difficult as to produce a disparate impact on one or more protected groups then the instructor and the institution must assume full civil liability for the harm done to these students.

Perhaps DoE could draft a "dear colleague" letter.

Dude1394 said...

I echo some of the comments about the value of diversity in almost any teaching endeavor, especially a college.

I would expect that not one single measurable metric is improved by having a diverse student body. None..

It should be abolished.

Fernandinande said...

Achilles said...
Progrsseives force poor minorities into a public school system they control. They segregate that system. The minorities end up with poor educational outcomes.


Not true.

“Yeah, kick her Chinese ass!” “Chinese bitch!” “Stupid Chinaman!” The Mexican girl’s friends egged her on.

The "Chinese bitch" went to "failing" ghetto schools, and now
"Ms. Ma is a senior vice president of SDB Partners and a policy advisor at the Heartland Institute. She is the author of Chinese Girl in the Ghetto, a politically incorrect memoir about growing up in Oakland, California."

Scalia points this out. We want to improve the school system and give minorities a better education.

He's wrong. Minorities get a great education in just about any school...if they're a member of minority groups that everyone (who counts) completely ignores because they disrupt the bogus "failing schools" narrative/excuse.

mccullough said...

Scalia is as guilty as anyone when it comes to creditenialism. He said he almost always hides his law clerk's from Harvard, Yale, or the University of Chicago.

He had one clerk ever from a state school. Jeff Sutton, who went to Ohio State law school and is a federal appellate judge. Judge Thomas is the most egalitarian in clerk hiring at the court. He has taken clerks from all different types of schools, including the "inferior" ones.

Birkel said...

Althouse reflects thee standard Leftist "thought" on this.

Conservatives must be perfect and never make a statement that can be willfully misinterpreted by truculent Leftists. And the Leftists only have to be right once.

Corollary:
Leftists will always have their statements explained away because their passions excuse their actions. Conservative criticism of Leftist viciousness is a microagression which will lead to more Leftist hatred.

Suddenly I see why Liberals support radical Islamists.

Real American said...

it's a lot easier to smear Scalia as racist than it is to make an argument using reason and logic. It's also typical of leftists. It's also rather ironic that those smearing Scalia as racist support insidious racial discrimination in university admissions and refuse to recognize the science showing the supposed beneficiaries of those racist policies are actually hurt by them. Of course, being a leftist means never having responsibility for the negative effects of your policies.

Rick said...

Gusty Winds said...
Is the reason that all these students are freaking out is that the minority diversity effort hasn't really produced much benefit for them?


This is why the expansion of government employment (even if indirectly foisted on the private sector via compliance monitoring) is so important to the left. When one social engineering construct fails the left's response is always Moar!

Social promotion -> Affirmative Action -> government employment -> government pension.

Cradle to grave coverage all done piecemeal, much administratively, so the public never focuses on it.

traditionalguy said...

Justice demands a simple ruling that Texas has to have the same ratio of Blacks to whites in its Law School as it has players on its football team, not counting the affirmative action concussion protocol players or the kickers.

Mike said...

Too bad we don't have an independent Press that would look at the facts (and the mismatch FOTC briefs submitted to which Scalia refers) and elicit intelligent responses from the people who are responsible for so many black students being unprepared for college at UT: Democrats, teacher unions, and the progressive tendency to screw up everything about education just for the sake of doing something. Forty freaking years of declining test scores, of lower grad rates of remedial reading being a freshmen requirement!

Forty years of progressive failure to reverse decline, and yet Scalia's "tone" is the issue. And Althouse can write that with a straight face. NO MATTER how you broach the subject some asshole will shout RACISM. There's a lot of things about failure that "don't trouble" liberals, but like Scalia I too am not troubled by fewer blacks at school X so long as the ones they admit have a real shot at success there. What's wrong with that?

Buncha mismatch denying idiots...

Anglelyne said...

Typing "clumsy" or "crude" into the Liberalese-to-English google translator returns "hate-facty".

dreams said...

Here is another perspective.

"This distinction was also lost on The Hill, which declared, “Scalia: Maybe black students belong at ‘less-advanced’ schools.” Similarly, Yahoo claimed that “Scalia suggested that black students benefit from a ‘slower track’ at less prestigious schools,” as if this suggestion extended to black students whose credentials fit top schools.

Mother Jones also adopted this line and sniffed, “after [Scalia’s comment], Court watchers will really be looking forward to his opinion in the case.” Actress Rashida Jones promptly called for Scalia’s impeachment.

This commentary demonstrates mismatch of a kind — the mismatch between a serious Supreme Justice and a press corps too lazy, too ideologically left-wing, and/or too politically correct to engage an argument that, though controversial, is well-rooted in research and legal scholarship."

http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2015/12/scalia-and-the-msm-a-case-of-mismatch.php

Jack Wayne said...

Look at affirmative action as a faction and you will see why the government struggles with getting rid of it. Factions exist to make government stronger. Factions are created and nurtured by government. SCOTUS is an part of government, ergo, they are interested in maintaining the faction.

mikee said...

The government needs to be color blind. The Republicans were right on this over half a century ago, when they voted in higher proportions than Dems to pass Johnson's Civil Rights bill, and they are right on it now.

Race means nothing except to those to whom it means everything. And yet I am somehow a racist for saying the government must ignore an individual's skin color to achieve equal rights for all.

Curious George said...

From a left FB post:

Abigail Fisher has poured seven years into a campaign to promote her vision of white entitlement and white supremacy. I strongly oppose everything about her and her campaign and will do my best to confront and dismantle the ideas she promotes—they are harmful and extremely dangerous. But the fact that a justice in our Supreme Court (not a private citizen like Abigail Fisher) would support these ideas is just.... too much. It is an outrage that our Supreme Court harbors such ideas. Given that it looks unlikely that Justice Scalia will step down any time soon, I have no remorse in desiring his death. Really, I don't. None. White supremacy has no place in our Supreme Court.

I weep for our future

The Godfather said...

Having read the transcript of the oral argument, I disagree with Denniston's characterization of Scalia's arguments as "clumsy" and Althouse's complaint that Scalia pointed at the mismatch argument "crudely". Scalia's comments appear on pp. 67-68 of the transcript (although to get the context you might want to start at p. 65). This is the argument on behalf of the University by Greg Garre (Chief Justice Roberts' former colleague at Hogan & Hartson; small world). Garre argued that under "color blind" admission programs "Diversity plummeted, especially among African-Americans." This was what Scalia was responding to with this comment that "there are those who contend that it does not benefit African-Americans to -- to get into the University of Texas where they do not do well" [etc.]. I see nothing "crude" or "clumsy" about that.

But this case isn't supposed to be about what's good or bad for African-Americans; it's supposed to be about how racial diversity improves the education provided by the univerisity, so Scalia then said "I'm just not impressed by the fact that -- that the University of Texas may have fewer [African-Americans]. Maybe it ought to have fewer." This case is before the Court a second time because the Court in the first case didn't think the factual record was sufficient to support the University's program, but the Court of Appeals decided not to remand the case to the District Court to take evidence and make findings; Scalia's comment goes to this crucial issue.

Unfortunately, some people (I mean Denniston, not Althouse) cannot consider the legal issues in a case like this in any other frame work than bigots v. Black people. That's what's "clumsy".

Theranter said...

Me too, Curious George, me too. It's not going to be pretty.

I wish whomever posted this on FB would take AlbertAnonymous' excellent advice and read Justice Thomas' concurring opinion. It doesn't take long, and they will learn much.

The opinion (here http://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/12pdf/11-345_l5gm.pdf) is a fantastic lesson in history, our Constitution, and the Court. They may learn much from it, and also begin to understand there is so much more in play than some girl with a vendetta and a Justice that "harbors such thoughts." Uh oh, battery dying, cannot finish thought nor edit, but at least want to say please take AlbertaA's suggestion and please read JT's concurring opinion.

Bryan C said...

"By pointing at the mismatch argument crudely, Scalia gave supporters of affirmative action a lavish gift."

Nonsense. "Supporters of affirmative action" had no intention of arguing Scalia's statements in good faith. There's no magic combination of words that will render liars unable to lie. They've been confronted with the same arguments many times before and are incapable of refuting them. Which is why they and their sympathetic media partners immediately resort to straw-men and ad hominem.

The Gold Digger said...

UT has a non-racial policy of accepting students in the top 10% of their high school graduating class.

I went to grad school at UT. At the time, admissions for the business school were based on two numbers: your undergraduate GPA and your GMAT score. GPA times ten or 100 or whatever to get it on the same scale as GMAT plus the GMAt = The Number. If you were white, you had to get above X to be admitted. If you were black, you had to get above (X-Y) to be admitted. If you were hispanic, you had to get above (X-Y-Z) to be admitted.

Nope, I have no proof of this. I saw it a year or two after I graduated and was shocked.

Real American said...

Anti-discrimination laws exist because race shouldn't be used as a proxy for experience, ability, intelligence or skill, etc. Those laws, in essence, say it doesn't matter what race you are in hiring, contracting, education, housing, etc.

The "diversity" rationale, on the other hand, is the opposite. The flawed fundamental underpinning of "diversity" is that the race of the students matters. It doesn't and the law says it doesn't. "Diversity" basically says the race of students ought to be X, Y and Z. For example if you're a white or Asian student and the school policy is that it needs more blacks and Hispanics, then it also saying it needs less whites and Asians. That is an insidious racial motive and it is illegal discrimination under any sane reading of US Civil Rights laws and the Constitution.

The idea that this "diversity" rationale could justify racial discrimination in admissions under strict scrutiny is appalling. At its base, "Diversity" has a racist intent, nothing more. Thus, the argument is that because schools have a racist intent, they should be allowed to discriminate by race. That is disgusting.

Schools should be admitting students based on their abilities to succeed at and contribute to the the institution based on non-racial factors, such as experience, ability, intelligence and skills. That's it. Schools should not be in the business of even caring what the racial makeup of the student body is. It is what it is. Admit the best people you can and let the chips fall where they may.

Terry said...

Paul Mirengoff at Powerline has a different take on Scalia's words (and the resulting media shitstorm): http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2015/12/scalia-and-the-msm-a-case-of-mismatch.php

"From the reaction of much of the mainstream media, you would have thought that Scalia advocated the overturning of Brown v. Board of Education. The Huffington Post wrote, “Justice Scalia thinks black students belong in ‘slower-track’ schools.” Actually, of course, Scalia was simply raising the question of whether those blacks who, based on their record, are unlikely to do well in elite schools should be admitted, and whether they benefit as much as they would if they attended a school where they are likely to do well."

seulgaist said...

I've been watching CNN all morning while trying to do a restore on my repaired computer. The Talking Heads are talking about the "mismatch" theory as if the settled science is that it has already been debunked.

I've not seen any reply to mismatch in the popular media, nor a defense of mismatch against a reasoned criticism of their theory. I'm sure there's some refutations in obscure educational journals, maybe even authored by that Professor Emeritus of Education, my old earring-wearing buddy Billy Ayers.

Mismatch debunked? No way.

Milwaukie Guy [on the backup]

Anglelyne said...

seulgaist: Mismatch debunked? No way.

It's amazing how many true things you'd think had been "debunked" if you believed the stuff goodthinkers told you.

Joe said...

When I was in high school, I entered the equivalent of a high honors program. I did terrible. I was getting stressed out and wasn't learning anything. Finally, my parents with some of my teachers slowly got me out of the program. It was embarrassing, but my only regret is that I didn't exit the entire program at once.

(It didn't help that my parents had very high expectations and were fairly oblivious to the actual classes due to my older siblings being much smarter than me. And yes, my younger siblings are much smarter than me too.)