August 21, 2019

"If there is a single micro-genre of American journalism more nauseating than the 'Jay-Z and Beyonce woke discourse circa 2007-2019,' I can't think of it."

"Why exactly we settled on these two billionaire entertainers as the embodiment of progressivism is utterly beyond me. There was never anything revolutionary about 'Woke Queen Bey.' Her weird 2010s monarchist turn was the will-to-power artfully packaged for 20-something Teen Vogue editorial assistants; lyrics like 'I see it, I want it, I stunt, yellow bone it / I dream it, I work hard, I grind till I own it' are essentially Randian.... As for Jay-Z, his — gag me — 'feminism' is about as sincere as you might expect from someone who got rich mouthing along to lines like 'In the cut where I keep em / Till I need a nut.'... All of which is to say that I can't believe anyone is actually surprised, much less upset, by Jay-Z's recent partnership with the NFL on racial issues.... Nobody bats an eye when Rush Limbaugh says things like 'I think we're past kneeling.' Why should anybody be surprised when the guy who did 'Big Pimpin'' tells us the same thing? Of course he's 'the NFL's black boyfriend.' He's been upper-middle-class white frat bros' black boyfriend for two decades now."

From "Jay-Z's cardboard corporate activism" by Matthew Walther (The Week).

Interesting to call Beyonce's lyrics "Randian." I had to look up "yellow bone it." From the annotations at Genius.com:
“Yellow bone” refers to being black but having light-skin.... Bey’s considered “yellow-boned” opposed to “red-boned” because her complexion has more of a “honey” tone to it, and is thus “yellow.” Jay Z referred to Beyonce as a “high yellow broad” on his 2009 song “Off That.”
What does Ayn Rand say about race? From Rand's "Virtue of Selfishness":
Racism is the lowest, most crudely primitive form of collectivism. It is the notion of ascribing moral, social or political significance to a man’s genetic lineage — the notion that a man’s intellectual and characterological traits are produced and transmitted by his internal body chemistry. Which means, in practice, that a man is to be judged, not by his own character and actions, but by the characters and actions of a collective of ancestors.

Racism claims that the content of a man’s mind (not his cognitive apparatus, but its content) is inherited; that a man’s convictions, values and character are determined before he is born, by physical factors beyond his control. This is the caveman’s version of the doctrine of innate ideas — or of inherited knowledge — which has been thoroughly refuted by philosophy and science. Racism is a doctrine of, by and for brutes. It is a barnyard or stock-farm version of collectivism, appropriate to a mentality that differentiates between various breeds of animals, but not between animals and men.

Like every form of determinism, racism invalidates the specific attribute which distinguishes man from all other living species: his rational faculty. Racism negates two aspects of man’s life: reason and choice, or mind and morality, replacing them with chemical predestination....
I'm not going to go any further into the study of whether Beyonce lyrics accord with Randian philosophy! If my head were full of Beyonce lyrics — which maybe they would be if my last 10 years were my teenage years — I might want to sort through whether Beyonce-ism is as left-wing as left-wing commentators had been presenting her up until this football foofaraw. But my teenage years were in the 60s. My head is full of Dylan lyrics. And I've already blogged about whether Dylan is as left-wing as some people seem to think or whether he's really somehow right-wing. So that's it for me for now about the political meaning of musical artists.

113 comments:

rhhardin said...

They've been disqualified by the left, whoever they are.

rhhardin said...

The writer is more woke than them, is what I got out of it. The persuasion being that so are you the reader.

The division seems to be between the committed woke and the let's take a look here woke.

Ralph L said...

How are they billionaires?

"High yellow" has been around for a long time, but I thought "boned" had a different connotation.

The Vault Dweller said...

How are they billionaires?

They are not just billionaires I think they are billionaires individually. Maybe not Beyonce, since Jay-Z has been in the mUsic business longer, but Jay-Z is. Though I think Dr. Dre was or is rumored to have been the first Hip-Hop billionaire, but is sometimes looked over, because he made most of his money as a producer and owner of a record label and not just as an artist.

AAT said...

"Racism is the lowest, most crudely primitive form of collectivism. “

That’s the fucking truth. The US was once collectivist along these lines, but we have worked hard to get beyond it. “The only good Indian is a dead Indian” was a kind of collectivism. I have always thought that, maybe I got it from Rand. Those are the sins of our fathers, they had been adjudicated. The problem with owning these kinds of sins in the past is that socialists, an ideology guilty of equal sins that has shown no signs of getting past their faults, attempts to use it to take away human freedom.

Maybe I am a Randian.... except that I think things like dangerous drugs should be illegal, and we should help society’s losers as best we can without destroying the incentives that make our society work, “The Great Society” failed on that score. Objectivists seem to think we are a race of "Spocks."

AAT said...

“The Yellow Rose of Texas.” I always assumed that was about a pretty black girl.

She's the sweetest little rosebud
That Texas ever knew
Her eyes are bright as diamonds
They sparkle like the dew
You may talk about your Clementine
And sing of Rosa Lee
But the Yellow Rose of Texas
Is the only girl for me

David Begley said...

Jay Z (real name unknown) and Beyoncé (real name unknown) are not musical artists. But they are rich.

Kevin said...

Progressivism pretends to move us forward but can’t stop living in the past.

David Begley said...

I submit if those two showed up at Barry Gordy’s Motown, they would have been thrown out.

AAT said...

Rand didn’t assign enough importance to the unconscious mind, IMHO. Poorly understood because it is not based on higher logic, just associations, rewards, and punishments and drives based on the evolution of hormones and the needs of procreation. It has a kind of veto power on the ideas that we can rationally consider since it is evolutionarily dozens of millions of years older, more highly tuned, smaller, quicker by an order magnitude in its simple conclusions, less prone to failure.

Kevin said...

Nobody bats an eye when Rush Limbaugh says things like 'I think we're past kneeling.

Woke in 2019: Black people need to keep kneeling!

The Vault Dweller said...

I'm always a little quizzical, when someone tries to dismiss some piece by saying it is just repackaged something or other, especially when it is a criticism about music, like this author does by saying Beyonce is just repackaged Nietzche and Ayn Rand. The important characteristic of music is that it is engaging to listen to, not that its lyrics cover some new area of thought or life. I mean there must have been countless songs written about the joy and pain of love It doesn't mean any new or subsequent song is bad or worthless because it covers the same subject.

Mr. Majestyk said...

No, Objectivists do not think we are a race of "Spocks." Rand wrote about what emotions are, where they come from, and why we have them.

AAT said...

"Rand wrote about what emotions are, where they come from, and why we have them.”

Well, that doesn’t seem to be accounted for in Objectivism, maybe you can enlighten me.

Laslo Spatula said...

You can trace an arc of Woke through the last 20 years of Jay-Z's career.

He began as celebrated by the black rap community as a hustler who made it big by any means possible (i.e., drug-dealing) and became rich and powerful enough to swing his cock in the world of the elite.

Then came the wannabe white kids, claiming him as a role model, too, in a suburban-bedroom-gangsta sort of way.

After marrying Beyonce he moderated his lyrics to be more sensitive and socially-aware -- to be better seen as an artist-businessman, not gangsta rapper, i.e., to be safe enough to get deals with Nike, etc.

Now, the SJWs look down on such a rags-to-riches success story, preferring the riches-to-rags of Kaepernick, a mediocre quarterback who found that blaming The System can be lucrative, too, without actually having to prove your worth in a measurable manner (view quarterback stats as akin to record sales to complete the picture).

Jay-Z has joined the NFL in the game where the goalposts keep moving...

I am Laslo.

AAT said...

"like this author does by saying Beyonce is just repackaged Nietzche and Ayn Rand.”

The writer’s problem is that she doesn’t think that art should exist outside the needs of The Party, but she can’t say that. This is a denunciation, not an artistic criticism.

rehajm said...

You don’t know how progressivism hooked up with these two billionaires (slur)? You needed pitchman for the crap you were selling. To use your terms they were progressivism’s white boyfriend.

Jersey Fled said...

Wow! Ann quoting Ayn this morning.

whitney said...

I think Jay-Z and Beyonce are the perfect symbolic representatives of woke America

Mary Beth (the commenter) said...

For years, it seemed that anything I read about J and/or Bey mentioned how they not only campaigned for Obama, they were good friends with the Obamas. It's weird that it isn't mentioned now.

Jeff Brokaw said...

The NFL had a choice between SJW wokeness and sensibility. They chose sensibility.

I’m okay with that.

rehajm said...

Thats good Laslo...

Laslo Spatula said...

The author Matthew Walther is white, of course. (Google his pictures: he is exactly the white kinda-hipster-pseudo-intellectual that you would expect to see).

So the soft white guy is So Woke he can tell the black man from the ghetto that -- regarding social justice and racism -- he is Doing It Wrong.

God, I'd love to see him alone in a room with Jay-Z. He'd piss his quivering self before Jay-Z could even deliver a moderate bitch slap.

He brings to mind the Gatsby Project and the following line: ""He went out of the room calling 'Ewing!' and returned in a few minutes accompanied by an embarrassed, slightly worn young man, with shell-rimmed glasses and scanty blond hair."

Matthew Walther IS Ewing.

I am Laslo.

AAT said...

It won’t be long before they are airbrushing Obama out of photographs. Well, using the airbrush feature in Photoshop.

Jeff Brokaw said...

Formula for success: go with the opposite of what every random SJW Wokeness Olympics columnist says and move on with your life.

Kevin said...

They chose sensibility.

Only after trying every other alternative.

MadisonMan said...

@Laslo, yes, Matthew Walther whitesplains why Jay-Z uppity.

Bob Boyd said...

Here's a picture of the guy calling Jay-Z an Uncle Tom

Jeff Brokaw said...

Just for some SJW Wokess Olympics fun, Jay-Z should act all butt-hurt and demand the firing of Walther.

Then sit back and watch the SJW Social Media Fireworks, wait 24 hours, and then say “haha just kidding!”

Laslo Spatula said...

It is interesting to observe that Walther waited until after the first wave of articles criticizing Jay-Z came out -- most by black writers.

Only then did he feel safe to pile on.

He obviously needs the weathermen to tell him which way the wind blows.

I am Laslo.

AAT said...

" It is a few chosen blacks gaining access to an unchanged monied white world of privilege.”

You point to the society where everybody can be raised up without denying the people liberty, you seem convinced it exists. But that’s probably because you lack any serious knowledge of history, having been fed your whole life on carefully curated propaganda. Or so it seems from your comments.

They chose themselves, BTW. Who is it that you contend “chose” them for success?

gilbar said...

does America (by which, i mean DEMOCRATS) even care about Blacks anymore?
Haven't they been replaced by Hondurans ?
Seriously, WHAT do democrats need Blacks for anymore? It's not like they do yardwork or something.
Their Votes? Dems assume that they'll be able to harvest enough if they need them .
The Blacks in California or New York? If they changed and voted, IN MASS for republicans, Democrats would still take those states. Same with Illinois
Can someone name a Blue state where they need those votes?
I'll stipulate, that Blacks are useful in purple states. They certainly used the votes in Waterloo, and Milwaukee. But those votes don't seem enough anymore; so now what?

AAT said...

"ou do the same, Mr spatula, and see if you get published.”

We all know that the leftist gatekeepers who have installed themselves in publishing houses, periodicals, newspapers, and even awards would never let Laslo’s writing see the light of day. That says nothing about the quality of his writing, and everything about the kind of cultural gatekeeping that Walther is trying to engage in.

You sing and dance and have the “choosers” pick you over Jay Z and Beyoncé and see if you sell any albums. It’s all about gatekeeping with you guys.

AAT said...

‘The problem with the internet is that there are no gatekeepers.” -HRC

Narayanan said...

Should be possible to substitute any -ism that devalue individual into quote paragraphs. And learn from results.

Narayanan said...

For role of emotion read essays in Romantic Manifesto - where she delves into esthetics.

Fernandistein said...

"Yellow", etc = mulatto and variants. They used to have some much cooler and funnier words than "yellow", like "quadroon", etc.

Racism is the lowest, most crudely primitive form of collectivism.

Even cruder and more primitive than familism, which everyone approves of, and which racism is an extension of? I don't think so. Racism is probably the 2nd best best form of collectivism.

It is the notion of ascribing moral, social or political significance to a man’s genetic lineage

Make up your own definitions...

— the notion that a man’s intellectual and characterological traits are produced and transmitted by his internal body chemistry.

Mostly true!

Which means, in practice, that a man is to be judged, not by his own character and actions, but by the characters and actions of a collective of ancestors.

Completely false!

Saint Croix said...

All I know about Beyonce is that she thinks you ought to put a ring on it. Also she got married the year before that song came out. I don't know if marriage is "upper middle class" but it's a pretty important institution. And the left has done a lot of damage to it.

I like that song.

Laslo Spatula said...

"You do the same, Mr spatula, and see if you get published."

Ah: getting published is what makes an opinion authentic.

Good to know.

"many NFL white supporters will approve."

Which means what, exactly?

So Jay-Z didn't live up to your desires. That happens. People are disappointing if you watch long enough.

Though it is funny that Kap's Wokeness followed soon after Visa dropped him from their TV ads because his star had dimmed.

But he has Nike now: they are good at making shoes for people with clay feet.

I am Laslo.

AAT said...

"any -ism that devalue individual i”

By devaluing the individual, you mean things like this: "It is a few chosen blacks gaining access to an unchanged monied white world of privilege.”

Were there roving gangs of white supremacists forcing blacks to listen to their music? Did they get a memo that Jay Z and Beyoncé were “chosen”? Like Mohamed Ali, I guess, and Eddie Murphy, and we could go on for quite a while picking out black people who owe their success, apparently, not to their talent, but to having been chosen by the head of the white race, i guess.

tim maguire said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
tim maguire said...

"If there is a single micro-genre of American journalism more nauseating than the 'Jay-Z and Beyonce woke discourse circa 2007-2019,' I can't think of it."

Not even pornogrind?

Of course, that guy had the right politics.

Known Unknown said...

"It is a few chosen blacks gaining access"

Chosen?

What is hard work but your own choosing?

Known Unknown said...

I will say Solange's album was much better than anything I have heard from Queen B lately.

AAT said...

"Beat that strawman hard.”

I am sure you are not goig to explain why it’s a “strawman.”

“ad hominem”
I don’t see any, not one. Just Socratic dialogue, you know, like Liz Warren says we should engage in!

“Out.”

Oh, surprise surprise surprise, you are goign to cut and run! Well, if you think of any good replies during the day, come back and let us know! “Carriage wit” is allowed in blog comment sections. I won’t hold my breath.

Guildofcannonballs said...

Why shit on cavemen? Didn't they have variations same as you and me? Why does the caveman get to be judged willy-nilly but not a white or a black?

Sounds like that damn old hogwash.

Saint Croix said...

Racism is probably the 2nd best best form of collectivism.

Wow, what a stupid thing to say.

stevew said...

"Randian" is used as an insult - understood that way by the Woke and the Progressive Left - trying to figure out how it relates to Ayn Rand is a waste of time.

The Jay-Z and Beyonce alliance with the NFL is nothing more than the NFL using them to rehabilitate their image. Kaepernick and his kneeling schtick dinged up the NFL, and they didn't help with their response.

If you watch the NFL you will recall they have a week on the schedule when the players where pink gear, supposedly in support of Women's Health. It's all show as that is nearly the entirety of their contribution to the advancement of women's health. Likewise their military and veterans display.

The best thing they could do to improve their image with the public is get back to a focus on the game.

PJ said...

Leave it to a dead white lady to skip the part where racism doesn’t include POC judging white people by the characters and actions of a collective of their ancestors.

Howard said...

I've seen them three times at Warrior playoff games. They behave themselves with the greatest common touch and the most genuine I have seen in any celebrity.

Unknown said...

@AAT sure, i’ll save you five seconds of Googling: “Emotions are the automatic results of man's value judgments integrated by his subconscious“ — online Ayn Rand Lexicon

Angle-Dyne, Samurai Buzzard said...

Vault Dweller: I'm always a little quizzical, when someone tries to dismiss some piece by saying it is just repackaged something or other, especially when it is a criticism about music, like this author does by saying Beyonce is just repackaged Nietzche and Ayn Rand.

In this case it means that the writer is a ridiculous pseud. (I'm told that this is not uncommon when it comes to pop-music criticism). A glance his œuvre at The Week suggests that the author exercises his talents across a broader field in general woke pseud-ery, not just in woke analyses of pop-music.

Sebastian said...

Message to Jay-Z: stay on the plantation. 'twas ever thus with Dems.

"Racism is a doctrine of, by and for brutes. It is a barnyard or stock-farm version of collectivism."

Hence its use by the present-day prog collectivists.

Saint Croix said...

If you watch the NFL you will recall they have a week on the schedule when the players where pink gear, supposedly in support of Women's Health.

If the NFL was actually worried about breast cancer, they might talk about how the birth control pill and abortion have both been linked to increased risks of the disease. But of course many football players like the birth control pill (and abortion) because football players like having more sexual options and children can be a financial and emotional burden. Many football players like a 15-minute commitment, not an 18-year one. But since pink uniforms represent Planned Parenthood as much as Susan G. Komen, it's all good.

If we were scoring this in a football game, it would be

Sex 21
Breast Cancer 0

I was going to say "pink uniform pussies," but that's just mean.

Angle-Dyne, Samurai Buzzard said...

Re Rand on racism: Standard example here of what all decent people were saying in the mid-20th century about "racism", and it isn't unreasonable in that historical context. Taken out of that context and read in 2019, it comes across as defensive blank-slatism. Here the belief that "racists" refuse to judge "a man...by his own character and actions" (the favored straw-man of the ignorant) is held up as an apotrope against the fact that our intelligence and behaviors are most certainly influenced by "a collective of ancestors" (aka genes).

Grand Beagle Fen said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Grand Beagle Fen said...

Frank Herbert's desert nomads have 124 different words for "water", categorizing everything about it - from it's temperature and taste to how it pools to how it flows to how it evaporates and condenses. That's how important Water is to them.

So I'm amused at how many different ways African-Americans define "black". When the media tells us it's the whites who are the racists.... Hmmm

Ken B said...

Buzzard
I think the meat of her argument isn’t any sort of blank slatism but analysis of the thinking implicit in racism, viz, that you can judge this person based on another group of people (his ancestors mostly). I think Steven Pinker would have no difficulty endorsing her paragraphs here.

Fernandistein said...

"Racism is probably the 2nd best best form of collectivism."

Wow, what a stupid thing to say.


Really? What do you think the best and 2nd best forms of collectivism are? Or putting it another way, the least worst forms?

I think the best form of collectivism is familism (nearly everyone agrees with that), and the worst is probably classical communism along the lines of "workers" vs "owners".

Another form of collectivism which most people agree with is "ageism", in which babies, children, adults and retirees treated differently according to their age.

Maybe ageism is the 2nd best form of collectivism, and racism the 3rd best form, is that what you meant?

virgil xenophon said...

Ann obviously hasn't spent much time in the Deep South. It's "Redbone" and "High Yella." FYI.

Hammond X. Gritzkofe said...

"...whether Dylan is as left-wing as some people seem to think or whether he's really somehow right-wing."

The Nolan chart turned 50 this year.

AAT said...

"@AAT sure, i’ll save you five seconds of Googling: “Emotions are the automatic results of man's value judgments integrated by his subconscious“ — online Ayn Rand Lexicon”

Not sure if that is a prime example of begging the question, but you certainly are ignoring it. That’s like defining a gear as a device to transfer rotational force without explaining how you use it in your car design.

Birches said...

Walther is one of my favorite contrarians.

Birches said...

Btw, Walther is a poor, traditional Catholic socialist. He lives in Minnesota, I think. Not a typical Ivy league now tie wearing writer. I don't think he's particularly woke, he just dislikes rich people who pretend they care about poors.

MadisonMan said...

he just dislikes rich people who pretend they care about poors.

i.e.
, most politicians.

Fernandistein said...

Walther is one of my favorite contrarians.

He has an article "Why America should absolutely buy Greenland", which doesn't consist of dishonest sarcastic Trump bashing, so he can't be all bad in that standard MSM way: "So the real question is not whether we should buy Greenland. It's how."

(I don't care or know anything at all about Jay-Z or Beyonce, so skipped all those words.)

Fernandistein said...

Ann obviously hasn't spent much time in the Deep South. It's "Redbone" and "High Yella." FYI.

I used to listen to a guy called "Yellowman" before I got sick of reggae.

Fernandistein said...

Here's Yellowman singing "This old man" Beats Beyonce, fersure.

Grand Beagle Fen said...

"Racism is the lowest, most crudely primitive form of collectivism. “


"That’s the fucking truth. The US was once collectivist along these lines, but we have worked hard to get beyond it. “The only good Indian is a dead Indian” was a kind of collectivism. I have always thought that, maybe I got it from Rand. Those are the sins of our fathers, they had been adjudicated. The problem with owning these kinds of sins in the past- "

Game theory on post-apocalyptic survival suggests that humans will organize tribally based on skin color. - for one distinct reason: you can't read a man's voter registration card from 500 yards.

This suggests that racism is anachronistic and that lessening it in the 21st century has had more to do with technology than values.

Because in a post-apocalyptic world where an EMP pulse or something has knocked out technology, humans are going to revert to tribalism and racism as a matter of survival.

SGT Ted said...

"Woke" people are extremely shallow when it comes to it. Also, "Woke" culture draws lots of sociopaths who cloak themselves in it to excuse their anti-social behavior.

BleachBit-and-Hammers said...

I prefer the Kardashians over the Jay-Z-Beyonce deal.

and I'm not a big fan of the kardashians.

Grand Beagle Fen said...

"Kaepernick and his kneeling schtick dinged up the NFL"

Dinged?

I'm a native Texan, born and raised in Dallas. I've been a diehard Cowboy fan since the days of Danny "3 and out" White.

And the NFL is dead to me. Fuck the NFL.

Angle-Dyne, Samurai Buzzard said...

KenB: I think the meat of her argument isn’t any sort of blank slatism but analysis of the thinking implicit in racism, viz, that you can judge this person based on another group of people (his ancestors mostly).

I don't think I missed the completely obvious "meat" here, Ken. My point is that in 2019 this "analysis of the thinking implicit in racism" is a huge straw-man. (Probably much less so in the '60s, when this was published.)

Just about nobody who gets labeled a "racist" these days believes that we should evaluate individuals based on observed statistical tendencies in groups. Know anybody who thinks "Well, that brilliant black guy can't really be way smarter than I am, because I'm white and whites have a higher average IQ than blacks"? Me neither. Yet in 2019, it remains an almost universally deployed straw-man (by most of the right as well as the left) whenever anybody wants to realtalk about "disparate impact".

Laslo Spatula said...

"Money changed hands, the Carter's benefitted."

And money changed hands from Nike to Kap. Kap benefitted.

It's almost like there are a lot of people cashing in on all of this.

Same as it ever was.

I am Laslo.

Laslo Spatula said...

"May they know true change, and succeed where the Boomer ideals failed."

This is pretty much said by every generation, ever.

I say that as a non-Boomer.

And to ""Same as it ever was" and "Oh, the times they are a changin" I will add "there is nothing new under the sun".

Which was written by the guy who was really Shakespeare.

I am Laslo.

EDH said...

Agreeing with MLK on fundamentals, Rand was positing a counterpoint to the collectivist approach of the civil rights movement of the time, and certainly the political structures that grew into the identity politics that have demonstrated an intractable lack of progress that continues until this day.

I have a dream that my four children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the colour of their skin, but by the content of their character.

“I Have a Dream …” August 28, 1963, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. spoke these immortal words to a crowd of over 200,000 people who had gathered for the now historic march on Washington to demand an end to racial segregation in the USA, and for equality in jobs and civil rights.

Racism is the lowest, most crudely primitive form of collectivism. It is the notion of ascribing moral, social or political significance to a man’s genetic lineage — the notion that a man’s intellectual and characterological traits are produced and transmitted by his internal body chemistry. Which means, in practice, that a man is to be judged, not by his own character and actions, but by the characters and actions of a collective of ancestors... It is thus that the theoreticians of collectivism, the “humanitarian” advocates of a “benevolent” absolute state, have led to the rebirth and the new, virulent growth of racism in the twentieth century.

RACISM by Ayn Rand | September 1963 | The Virtue of Selfishness

Bob Boyd said...

May they know true change

Be careful what you wish for.

stevew said...

Fair enough Grand Beagle Fen. Though I'm guessing hiring Jay-Z and Beyonce isn't an attempt to win you back. ;-)

JAORE said...

Beyonce is just repackaged Nietzche and Ayn Rand.

Uh oh. Beyonce's career will be OVAH when her fans learn of this!

Bob Boyd said...

I only just found out it's not pronounced Bay untz.
I got Jay-Z right, tho.

Angle-Dyne, Samurai Buzzard said...

EDH: Rand was positing a counterpoint to the collectivist approach of the civil rights movement of the time, and certainly the political structures that grew into the identity politics that have demonstrated an intractable lack of progress that continues until this day.

She was? Could be, but she doesn't appear to be talking about the civil rights movement of that time in the passage you excerpted. Doubtless she would have condemned the racialist identitarianism that the civil rights movement morphed into, but did she actually predict as much? Did she call-out the "collectivist" tendencies of the then-civil rights movement specifically?

Ann Althouse said...

If you respond to a commenter I always delete, you will have to be deleted too.

Ann Althouse said...

""High yellow" has been around for a long time..."

It was already embarrassingly old fashioned in the 1970s, so I wouldn't say "has been around." It was once around. Where did it persists? I don't think white people felt it was a term they could decently use (other than in some kind of hipster irony with air quotes).

doctrev said...

Sorry bout that, Althouse. Maybe a list of banned commenters would help to know who's permanently off the list? Either way, I'm not upset my comment was deleted.

exiledonmainstreet, green-eyed devil said...

whitney said...
I think Jay-Z and Beyonce are the perfect symbolic representatives of woke America

8/21/19, 6:40 AM

That was true during the Obama years.

As Biden has discovered, the prog goalposts have shifted leftward since then.

EDH said...

Angle-Dyne, Samurai Buzzard said...
"Did she call-out the "collectivist" tendencies of the then-civil rights movement specifically?"

Today, that problem is growing worse — and so is every other form of racism. America has become race-conscious in a manner reminiscent of the worst days in the most backward countries of nineteenth-century Europe. The cause is the same: the growth of collectivism and statism.

In spite of the clamor for racial equality, propagated by the “liberals” in the past few decades, the Census Bureau reported recently that “[the Negro’s] economic status relative to whites has not improved for nearly 20 years.” It had been improving in the freer years of our “mixed economy”; it deteriorated with the progressive enlargement of the “liberals’” Welfare State.

The growth of racism in a “mixed economy” keeps step with the growth of government controls. A “mixed economy” disintegrates a country into an institutionalized civil war of pressure groups, each fighting for legislative favors and special privileges at the expense of one another.

The existence of such pressure groups and of their political lobbies is openly and cynically acknowledged today. The pretense at any political philosophy, any principles, ideals or long-range goals is fast disappearing from our scene — and it is all but admitted that this country is now floating without direction, at the mercy of a blind, short-range power game played by various statist gangs, each intent on getting hold of a legislative gun for any special advantage of the immediate moment...

The “liberals” are guilty of the same contradiction, but in a different form. They advocate the sacrifice of all individual rights to unlimited majority rule — yet posture as defenders of the rights of minorities. But the smallest minority on earth is the individual. Those who deny individual rights, cannot claim to be defenders of minorities.

This accumulation of contradictions, of shortsighted pragmatism, of cynical contempt for principles, of outrageous irrationality, has now reached its climax in the new demands of the Negro leaders.

Instead of fighting against racial discrimination, they are demanding that racial discrimination be legalized and enforced. Instead of fighting against racism, they are demanding the establishment of racial quotas. Instead of fighting for “color-blindness” in social and economic issues, they are proclaiming that “color-blindness” is evil and that “color” should be made a primary consideration. Instead of fighting for equal rights, they are demanding special race privileges.

They are demanding that racial quotas be established in regard to employment and that jobs be distributed on a racial basis, in proportion to the percentage of a given race among the local population. For instance, since Negroes constitute 25 percent of the population of New York City, they demand 25 percent of the jobs in a given establishment.

Racial quotas have been one of the worst evils of racist regimes. There were racial quotas in the universities of Czarist Russia, in the population of Russia’s major cities, etc. One of the accusations against the racists in this country is that some schools practice a secret system of racial quotas. It was regarded as a victory for justice when employment questionnaires ceased to inquire about an applicant’s race or religion.

Today, it is not an oppressor, but an oppressed minority group that is demanding the establishment of racial quotas. (!)

Angle-Dyne, Samurai Buzzard said...

EDH - thanks for taking the trouble to answer my questions! Much appreciated.

Fernandistein said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Angle-Dyne, Samurai Buzzard said...

AA: It was already embarrassingly old fashioned in the 1970s, so I wouldn't say "has been around." It was once around. Where did it persists? I don't think white people felt it was a term they could decently use (other than in some kind of hipster irony with air quotes).

Yes, but that doesn't mean that it "has[n't] been around". A word or phrase doesn't have to persist as either ironic or acceptable for people to be familiar with it. Nor, for that matter, is its continued existence defined by its frequency of use among white people in general, let alone "nice" white people.

Fernandistein said...

“I Have a Dream …” August 28, 1963, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. spoke these immortal words

That plagiarized introduction and the slogan following it do seem immortal, don't they?

The funny thing is that King was a collectivist who wanted reparations and other special race-based treatments before equal, non-racist, treatment was considered.

PM said...

Jay-Z's money deal with the Kaepernick-less NFL flipped the script for the progressives who, as always, are on the right side of hysteria.

Bob Boyd said...

Remember when they were telling us Condoleezza Rice isn't really black?

Matt said...

Formation by Beyonce (first quote by Walther) was written by Khalif Brown, Asheton Hogan, Mike Will Made It and Beyonce. Big Pimpin' by Jay-Z (second quote) was written by Jay-Z, Chad Butler, Bernard Freeman, Timothy Mosley (Timbaland) and Baligh Hamdi.

Is it worth the effort analyzing a song's lyrics as a reflection of the singer when there's a good chance the singer didn't write the lyrics? In any event, I'm guessing "own it" came first, and "yellow-bone it" was a half-assed attempt to find a rhyme and be mildly clever.

NorthOfTheOneOhOne said...

stevew said...

The Jay-Z and Beyonce alliance with the NFL is nothing more than the NFL using them to rehabilitate their image. Kaepernick and his kneeling schtick dinged up the NFL, and they didn't help with their response.

Limbaugh addressed this on his show last week. He belives that somebody wants to bring Jay-Z in as a partial team owner (apparently Jay-Z and Bey don't have enough money to swing full ownership), but has to get buy-in from the Owners Association. He's thinking the NFL position is a way of getting the owners comfortable with Jay-Z and throwing Kapernick under the bus was a good faith gesture on Jay-Z's part.

Grand Beagle Fen said...

"Fair enough Grand Beagle Fen. Though I'm guessing hiring Jay-Z and Beyonce isn't an attempt to win you back. ;-)

Hehe. Nope.

But isn't he married to that Kardashian girl? I've been impressed with her lately. She's been bringing to the attention of Trump cases of black males who may have been unfairly sentenced to prison. I think she's even gotten Trump to commute a few sentences.

Not as glamorous as fighting climate change and saving the planet, but much more useful.

stevew said...

"Limbaugh addressed this on his show last week. He belives that somebody wants to bring Jay-Z in as a partial team owner"

Oh my, hadn't heard that. That is even more cynical than what I was thinking!

Anthony said...

This whole WHITE SUPREMACY RACIST RACIST RACIST RACIST crap is getting out of control.

Yesterday at the gym I finished up and went to the locker room to shower. A black guy (whose color I gave not two sh**s about) was by my locker so I just breezily said the usual "I'm right behind you here. . . ."

Him: "That's not something a black man wants to hear."

Me, blank look and thought bubble: ("Huh?")

Him: "When a white man is behind a black man it's usually because he's chasing him."

Me, thought bubble: ("Is this an appropriate time to make a Don't Drop The Soap joke?")

Me: "Oh. . . .I've, ummm, never heard that one before."

And thus began a full minute of him trying to engage me in anti-Trump, horrible racism, children in cages, pussy-grabbing, blah blah blah, which I desperately tried to redirect while taking off all of my clothes.

Me, thought bubble: ("DUDE, WER'E IN A LOCKER ROOM AND WE JUST MET AND YOU'RE TRYING TO GET ME TO TALK ABOUT POLITICS AND RACISM WHEN I AM TOTALLY BUCK NAKED.")

I fortunately managed to escape (avec towel) with a friendly "You have a great day!" to which he responded in kind.

W.

T.

F.

Is wrong with people these days?

Jupiter said...

I don't think something named "Matthew Walther" gets to criticize black people, even if one of them is a honey-colored Randian and the other is a professional misogynist.

That's racist!

Char Char Binks said...

I've managed to ignore most of Bouncy's whiteface minstrelsy.

hugh42 said...

Yellow bone = light skinned black person.

mockturtle said...

Althouse admits: My head is full of Dylan lyrics.

I'm sorry to hear that. Maybe some kind of decongestant would help. ;-)

mockturtle said...

Three cheers in memory of Ayn Rand. We really should celebrate her birthday: February 2, I believe. She is one of the women I most admire, along with Maggie Thatcher, Golda Meir, Elizabeth I and Pancho Barnes.

Jim at said...

The NFL had a choice between SJW wokeness and sensibility. They chose sensibility.

They did? How? In what way?
I ask honestly because I haven't watched a minute of an NFL game in three years.

JAORE said...

Pancho Barnes? Very cool reference. As a native Kansas boy I was a fan of Amelia, but all the pilots of yore were on my list.

FWIW: I, long ago (1979?), took flying lessons at Evergreen Field in Washington. 1948 Champ, grass field, no radio, tail dragger and the fuel gauge was a wire through the cowling, it slowly disappeared as the fuel burned. Flip the prop to start, look over your shoulder and GO!

My instructor was well into his 70's. The other was a woman of similar age who showed me her first pilots license, Nebraska Aviatrix #3.

Ralph L said...

Pancho Barnes?

Wasn't that the pretty brown boy on "CHiPS?"

ken in tx said...

The Yellow Rose of Texas was a mullatto prostitute who gathered Intel on Santa Anna's army for the Texians during the War for Texas Indipendence. The song was originally considered risque and not suitable for mixed company.

Unknown said...

@AAT not surprisingly, that’s not all Objectivism has to say about emotions. Here’s more information… 3+ hours of lectures on the Objectivist theory of emotions. Be sure to remove the spaces:
courses dot aynrand dot org/campus-courses / emotions

Angle-Dyne, Samurai Buzzard said...

JAORE @1:37:

Cool story.

Bilwick said...

Nowadays, of course, Rand would be labeled a racist because she DIDN'T believe that skin color should or did determine a person's beliefs or attitudes.

You know the worst thing about Rand's philosophy? If enough people accepted it, the serfs might get the idea that their lives and property belong to them and not the State. Then we could end up with a truly free society! The horror--the horror!

AAT said...

"that’s not all Objectivism has to say about emotions”

This is called a dialogue of the deaf. And was talking about the subconscious, not just emotions. Objectivism can have all of the theories they want about emotion. How does a government that is based on Objectivism handle the fact that most humans aren’t rational most of the time and that half of the people are dumber than average, making matters worse?

Saint Croix said...

What do you think the best and 2nd best forms of collectivism are?

I don't believe in collectivism. And I really don't believe in racist collectivism. Maybe you could give us some racist collectivism success stories.

Saint Croix said...

I think the best form of collectivism is familism (nearly everyone agrees with that), and the worst is probably classical communism along the lines of "workers" vs "owners".

So you are ranking the forms of collectivism, and this is what you came up with?

1. Family
2. Racist Collectivism
3. Communism

BJM said...

"Don’t follow leaders

Watch the parkin’ meters"


Still good advice.